January 2, 2009

MAME Frontends in Ubuntu

I have been interested in getting MAME running on my desktop again. I never got SDLMAME working on Fedora 8 because performance was terrible. For some reason, under Ubuntu with my Intel GMA3100 onboard video things work well enough to play pacman at least (and probably others, SFA2 seemed to work well, but as always SSF2T was too fast) so I wanted to see what the state of MAME Front Ends for linux was. (Oh, also I have to run in the software render mode to get the tab menus to show up, otherwise they are garbage. Once things are set up though I don't need the menus, so back to hardware mode which is fast.)

kxmame doesn't believe me that my sdlmame executable is a MAME executable, it complains that it can't find any MAME instance and errors out. So that is enough time spent on that one.

kamefu refuses to find any of my roms. So that one is out.

wah!cade seems to work, but it uses bitmaps for the default UI and on my 24" monitor I can't read anything. So I stopped play with that for the time being.

Two more I am looking at are Lemon Launcher (probably won't install it unless I can't get AdvancedMenu to work) and AdvanceMENU which is my current best hope. There is a description of the install process here. So far installing AdvanceMENU has been a real pain. this thread has helped me fix a few SDL errors and of course I had to install a lot of stuff to get this to compile.

Once compiled I couldn't get it to run well: I added sdlmame as an xmame emulator, and had to make some init files for that. But it would freeze when trying to launch a program. I am now checking on the configuration used by Piapara, a bootable ISO that runs advancemenu and sdlmame to see what they use. To do that I had to create a boot cd, mount the iso in a loopback filesystem, then mount the app.img in a loopback filesystem. Finally, the relevant setup info they use is:

emulator "MAME" mame "/usr/bin/mame" "-inipath /mnt/pendrive/sdlmame/ini"
emulator_roms "MAME" "/mnt/cdrom/sdlmame/roms"
emulator_flyers "MAME" "/mnt/cdrom/sdlmame/flyers"
emulator_altss "MAME" "/mnt/cdrom/sdlmame/snap"
So they set up the emulator as a mame emulator. Ok. I'll try that.

Also, a new discovery: using the sdlmame option -gl_forcepow2texture fixes the menu corruption bug that I was seeing. So yay for that! Actually on further investigation I also needed to set the filter to 0 and (remove bilinear filtering from output, which makes things look more pixelated and better anyway) and enable gl_glsl in the sdlmame config. It seems to be working well now.

I haven't got advancemenu to work though. I have all these great artwork cabinet and screenshot files, but I can't get advancemenu to launch sdlmame. Ah well. That is enough time spent on that today.

Annoyingly Super Street Fighter II Turbo still runs too fast. Tapper runs well though, so that is good enough.



Comments

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Re: MAME Frontends in Ubuntu
Another mame and linux afficianado :) Just got gsnes9x in last night. Mame is on the list. Best of luck with your attempts!!
Posted 9 years, 2 months ago by Andy • @ • • Reply
Re: MAME Frontends in Ubuntu
So what are people currently using for SDLMame front ends?

I have AdvanceMenu working to the point that it can display games that I have, but it can't launch SDLMame, despite what I think are correct settings in the advmenu.rc.

I've had a few good games of Tapper, Donkey Kong, and Pac-Man though, so that is cool. I just wish I had a more efficient way to browse and launch the games.
Posted 9 years, 2 months ago by Fugu • @wwwReply
Re: MAME Frontends in Ubuntu
gmameui, mamepgui, gnome video arcade, piapara, zxmamecd, etc......
Posted 8 years, 7 months ago by mocha • • • Reply
Re: MAME Frontends in Ubuntu
You should also try the QMC2 frontend (http://qmc2.arcadehits.net/wordpress/) which maintains packages for various Ubuntu versions. I'm running it in Linux Mint 11 (which is Ubuntu-based), and it's great.

One of my favorite features is that for each game you have, you can automatically see the preview image and description from the MAME MAWS database (http://maws.mameworld.info/maws/)---so there's no need to import game history files, or even screenshots!

The only thing to be aware of is that if you download MAME icon files to use with the frontend, you must convert them from .ICO to .PNG format.
Posted 6 years, 6 months ago by ander • • • Reply
Re: MAME Frontends in Ubuntu
Thanks, I'll check it out! I recently bought a MacBook Pro 17" and have been dual booting into Windows (not much, admittedly) for games, so I haven't been fooling around with MAME on linux lately. But I do want to check it out and see if I can get a good solution working on my linux box.
Posted 6 years, 6 months ago by fuguTabetai • @wwwReply

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