boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Atari ROM Folder Help

Fri May 26, 2017 9:18 pm

I have been reading through much of the posts and information on the web but have been unable to get the mame64 (0.185) program to load an Atari 2600 cartridge ROM. I have a couple of old cartridges I want to show my son but the 2600 died years ago.

My discussion will use the ROM Asteroids since this is one I have.

I launch the MAME64 GUI and scroll to Atari 2600 (NTSC) and select it. I then have a new list of roms of which Asteroids is listed. If I select it, I receive an error that the ROM is missing files. I know the ROM is good because I can get it to load if I use a command line to run the 2600 console manually. The MAME64 gui just cannot find it.

I have little understanding of XML but have done my best to review the a2600.xml in the hash folder. If I understand it correctly, I should have a zipped file called asteroid with asteroids.bin inside. This where I get lost. What folder do I put the zipped file in? From my reading, it should be in a folder called a2600 and the folder or subdirectory should be in the folder ROMS. Although I have searched everywhere I can, I come up short of the answer to this. I have tried placing the ROM in \software \software\a2600 and \roms\a2600, the ROM is never found.

Can someone offer some assistance in my understanding or point me to documentation I can read to solve this?

Thank you,
John

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Robert
Posts: 38
Joined: Thu Nov 06, 2014 12:44 pm
Location: Land of Oz
Contact: Website

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Sat May 27, 2017 4:43 am

Make a folder called 'software' under the folder containing MAME. Then from within the software folder make a folder called 'a2600'. Put asteroid.zip into the a2600 folder.

Now, in your mame.ini, make sure that rompath contains roms;software (the separator is a semi-colon, it's hard to tell with the font used here)

If all is ok, type in from the command line: mame a2600 asteroid and make sure it starts without error.

If that works, then you will be able to run it from the built-in UI.

boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Sat May 27, 2017 3:47 pm

Robert,

Thank you for your help! I followed your instructions and can confirm, the command line works as expected. However, the UI still does not load the game with a red banner advising some or all of the files are missing. Have I overlooked any other configuration settings?

I edited the mame.ini roms;software in the rompath. I placed the subdirectory a2600 in the software folder under the mame root directory with the asteroid.zip file in it.

Thanks,
John

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Robert
Posts: 38
Joined: Thu Nov 06, 2014 12:44 pm
Location: Land of Oz
Contact: Website

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Sat May 27, 2017 11:25 pm

There was a whole heap of breakage during the 0.184 to 0.185 cycle, and perhaps your problem is caused by that. However it is working with the current git version. I'd suggest downloading 0.186 when it is released next Wednesday and give that a try.

boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Sun May 28, 2017 4:36 pm

Robert,

Thank you again for your advice. I will download the next version and post the results when finished.

John

boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Thu Jun 01, 2017 10:57 pm

I downloaded the 0.186 version and have the same issue. While testing, I accidentally clicked on asteroids (older) and it loads correctly. I have looked over the a2600 folder and do not see a rom called asteroid1 or a file called "asteroids (1981) (atari, brad stewart - sears) (cx2649 - 49-75163) [no copyright].bin" Where is it loading this from? I don't see it anywhere in any of the directories. What have I missed?

John

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B2K24
Posts: 40
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2016 5:43 am

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:41 am

Switch from MAME 0.185 to MAME 0.186 as Robert suggested. Now in your mame.ini there's an option called rompath wherever you decide to put the a2600 folder, this location must be set or defined in the rompath option. Robert explained exactly how to do this by creating the software directory and adding that location to the rompath option.

I just tested using MAME 0.186 and I can load asteroids using MAME's Internal UI.

Another option to try is removing the bin from the zip file and use MAME's File Manger to load the file.
Run mame64 a2600 from command line then press enter on cartridge (cart). Then you can navigate to the bin file and it will load.

boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Fri Jun 02, 2017 9:53 pm

B2K24,

Thank you for taking the time to respond. I have done everything you and Robert have suggested even before your post but I am still unable to get anything in the a2600 folder to load. Yes, from command line everything works. I still do not understand how or where the Asteroids (older?) is loading from. It is the only working ROM when I run Atari 2600 (NTSC) of the ones I have and that one is not in my a2600 folder. I have verified the roms path and hash file for a2600. If it is working for you, then I still have missed something. I will continue to search for a solution.

Thanks,
John

boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Fri Jun 02, 2017 11:36 pm

So I finally figured out the problem. After reading a few new posts, I read where the UI must match everything including the CRC in the hash file. The post from B2K24 on another thread posted this information. I had not paid attention to the error in the command line as the game worked. When the game exited I noticed the file error. It turns out I have dumps with different CRC values. Now that I have the correct ROMs, I just need to rename them to match what is expected in the hash file. I still have a lot to learn but am pleased with my progress. This is really cool so I can show my son what we had when I was his age.

Thank you to everyone how helped me with this!

John

boochk
Posts: 25
Joined: Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 pm

Re: Atari ROM Folder Help

Sat Jun 03, 2017 1:30 am

After reviewing the ROMs I downloaded to match the cartridges I have, I am able to make them work. The problem I am running into is the Space Invader game (one example), when I run it, the game is in black and white. My rom was in color. If I review the 7z file, there are 20 different files with extension a26. How do I match up the ROMS with the hash file? Do I have to test each game until I find the correct version. Is there a simpler way of matching the games with the hash file. If there is documentation on how to do this, please point me to the documentation so I can explore this further. I don't seem to be able to find anything that describes how to do this.

Thanks,
John

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