This is an old revision of the document!


How to install games to hard drive and make them run.

Chapter 1: The Fundamentals

You will need X68000 with 2MB of ram and a keyboard. It is possible to run some small games with 1MB as well, but the majority of them require 2MB. Download the latest English version of DiskExplorer here:

http://hp.vector.co.jp/authors/VA013937/editdisk/index_e.html

And download the hard disk image from here:

http://gamesx.com/wiki/doku.php?id=x68000:sxsi_disk_image_with_games_and_lots_of_mdx_files

This will save you the trouble of setting up a working environment. Open the downloaded image with DiskExplorer, have a look around.

Chapter 2: HumanOS vs MS-DOS

Lucky for us the HumanOS is very much like ye good old MS-DOS. Now let me explain what happens when X68000 tries to boot from hard drive:

  • FIrst it checks for partition which is set as BOOTABLE and tries to boot from it. If none are found, insert disk prompt appears
  • Tries to execute HUMAN.SYS, COMMAND.X These files are mandatory for X68000 to boot into command prompt
  • Executes scripts from CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT. They perform a chain of DOS commands and execute files.
  • Files with extension *.R and *.X are executable. Just type the name of file in command prompt and press enter to execute it or highlight it in file commander and press enter.

Every game disk which has these files boots in the same manner. There are some very rare exotic games which use trackloaders, kind of like on Amiga. Motos and Flying Shark, to name a few. You can recognize them very easy because if you try to list contents of such disk, they will look like empty or have one or more dummy files. Please note that in most cases you will have to convert *.dim floppy image files to *.xdf before opening them in DiskExplorer.

You can do it with Virtual Floppy Image Converter. Grab it from here:

http://www.vector.co.jp/soft/win95/util/se151106.html

Chapter 3: Writing !Start.bat files

Upon booting, the X68000 executes files from config.sys and usually they have X or SYS extensions.

  • *.X files, which are required for the game to run, in almost all cases can be executed from *.BAT files or command line.
  • *.SYS files and some rare *.X files need ADDDRV (Example #4). ADDDRV is very picky and most of the times incompatible.

Combining lines from Config.sys and Autoexec.bat

Crystal Tower is used to illustrate this example:

Original Config.sys

FILES = 15
BUFFERS = 20 1024
LASTDRIVE = Z
BREAK = KILL
VERIFY = ON
TITLE = \CONFIG\TITLE.SYS
KEY = \KEY.SYS
USKCG = \USKCG.SYS
BELL = \CONFIG\BEEP.SYS
DEVICE = \SYS\OPMDRV3.X
DEVICE = \SYS\FLOAT2.X
DEVICE = \SYS\IOCS.X

Here we can see drivers being loaded and environmental variables being set up.

  • The mandatory variables and drivers like USKCG.SYS and FLOAT2.X are being set up each time when booting from HDD so most of these lines can be safely ignored.
  • Drivers are usually loaded from SYS and BIN directories.

In this example OPMDRV3.X and IOCS.X are the ones which interest us. First we must check if they can be executed after the system has fully booted. If yes, then there is a good chance that the game can be installed to HDD.

Original Autoexec.bat

echo off
PATH A:\;A:\SHELL;A:\SYS;A:\BIN;A:\ETC
tone3.x
chdir ct
ctmain

Here we can see another environmental variable called PATH being set up. In this case we can go with the lazy method and SUBST to the directory (Example #2) where we have copied the game or we can change the paths so that we don't have to do SUBST. Please note that there are games which still need SUBST even after modifying the PATH variable.

  • Remove references to \ A:\ B:\ if they are present
  • Write OPMDRV3.X and IOCS.X after the line which defines PATH
  • Rename autoexec.bat to !Start.bat.

The resulting !Start.bat should look like this:

echo off
PATH SHELL;SYS;BIN;ETC
OPMDRV3.X
IOCS.X
tone3.x
chdir ct
ctmain

Example #1 - Installing Fantasy Zone and running it from Hard Drive

  • Make a directory in Games2 and call it FantasyZone
  • Copy the contents of floppy to created directory
  • Delete HUMAN.SYS and COMMAND.X from directory FantasyZone
  • Rename AUTOEXEC.BAT to !Start.bat
  • Run !Start.bat

This method should work with the majority of one floppy games. If for some reason it refuses to load, try the SUBST A: A:\GAMES2\NameOfYourGame method described in the next example. If that fails, try to exit all file commanders and run it from pure DOS. If that doesn't help, it could be some sort of protection. Try a different game.

Example #2 - Installing Star Cruiser and running it from Hard Drive

  • Make a directory in Games2 and call it StarCruiser
  • Copy the contents of both floppies to created directory
  • Delete HUMAN.SYS and COMMAND.X from directory StarCruiser
  • Rename AUTOEXEC.BAT to !Start.bat and add the following two lines at the very beginning:
SUBST B: A:\GAMES2\STARCRUISER
SUBST A: A:\GAMES2\STARCRUISER

The resulting !Start.bat should look like this:

SUBST B: A:\GAMES2\STARCRUISER
SUBST A: A:\GAMES2\STARCRUISER
CRUISER
  • Run !Start.bat

Example #3 - Installing Dragon Buster and running it from Hard Drive

  • Make a directory in Games2 and call it DragonBuster
  • Copy the contents of floppy to created directory
  • Delete HUMAN.SYS and COMMAND.X from directory DragonBuster

Please note that there is no CONFIG.SYS or AUTOEXEC.BAT. Now search for files with *.R or *.X file extension. Those files are executable. Most of the times the names of those files give hints on which one of them is the main. If in doubt, try to execute them one by one until you find the right one. Then create a new !Start.bat file and write the name of the file which launches game. In this case !Start.bat should look like this:

BOOT.X

Example #4 - Installing Namachuukei 68 and running it from Hard Drive

Download ADDDRV.X from here: http://nfggames.com/X68000/Mirrors/x68pub/x68tools/HUMAN/ADDDRV/ADRV302A.LZH

  • Make a directory in Games2 and call it Nama68
  • Copy ADDDRV.X and the contents of both floppies to created directory
  • Delete HUMAN.SYS and COMMAND.X from directory Nama68
  • Rename config.sys to !Start.bat
  • Use SUBST, as mentioned in Exapmle #2, to map both drives to Nama68 directory
  • Use ADDDRV.X to load OPMXDRV.X

ADDDRV.X is very useful for games which load drivers from config.sys. The syntax for ADDDRV.X is exactly the same as in config.sys, just replace the “DEVICE =” with “ADDDRV.X”. The resulting !Start.bat should look like this:

SUBST B: A:\Games2\Nama68
SUBST A: A:\Games2\Nama68
ADDDRV.X OPMXDRV.X
NAMA68.X

Example #5 - Installing Pipe Dream and running it from Hard Drive

This method uses 2HDSIM.X to mount XDF floppy image files and DRIVE.X to assign drive letters A and B for them. It was discovered by Caius and is the next preferred method after SUBST.

Download 2HDSIM.X and DRIVE.X from here: http://nfggames.com/X68000/Misc/2hdsim_drivex.zip

  • Make a directory in Games and call it PipeDream
  • Rename first XDF floppy image file to Disk1 and second to Disk2
  • Copy 2HDSIM.X DRIVE.X and both renamed XDF image files to the created directory
  • Create new !Start.bat file and write the following lines:
drive a: c:
drive a: b:
2hdsim 0: Disk1
2hdsim 1: Disk2
a:
autoexec

The first four lines arrange the following drive mappings:

  • A: = Disk1
  • B: = Disk2
  • C: = Hard Disk

The same principle applies to one disk games as well, just omit the fourth line. After the drives have been mapped and image files mounted, !Start.bat changes to drive A: and executes autoexec.bat. Please note that every game is individual and sometimes requires combining lines from config.sys and autoexec.bat files.

The following rules must be met for image files to mount:

All image files must be defragmented (one continuous block).
Use Liner to defragment the images when required.

Syntax example:

liner disk1
Image files must be 1261568 bytes long. Sometimes while copying them with DiskExplorer their original size changes to 1263616.
Use JSplit to cut off the excess and restore their original size. If that does not help, reimport the original image files.

Example #6 - Installing Undeadline and running it from Hard Drive

This method is similar to Example #5, was also discovered by Caius and can be very efficient with three or more floppy games which are immune to SUBST. In this example the first floppy disk is mounted as floppy drive 0:, the second and third as floppy drive 1:. The game rotates disk two and three automatically when needed.

  • Make a directory in Games2 and call it Undeadline
  • Rename first XDF floppy image file to Disk1, second to Disk2 and third to Disk3
  • Copy 2HDSIM.X DRIVE.X and three renamed XDF image files to the created directory
  • Create new !Start.bat file and write the following lines:
drive a: c:
drive a: b:
2hdsim 0: Disk1
2hdsim 1: Disk2
2hdsim 1: Disk3
a:
mxdrv.x
loader.x

That's it. Try it ! It really isn't that hard. The most annoying part is understanding when a game has not enough free memory or if there is a protection.

Keep the scene alive !

Eidis

 
 x68000/installing_games_to_hard_drive.1408543600.txt.gz · Last modified: 2019/08/27 20:44 (external edit)
 
Except where otherwise noted, content on this wiki is licensed under the following license: CC Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International
Recent changes RSS feed Driven by DokuWiki