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Author Topic: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)  (Read 47625 times)

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crawlingpeter

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #120 on: March 01, 2014, 12:32:37 am »
I believe I have lost hope for this project and that truly makes me sad because it had the most potential for any Android front-end I'd seen...

However, there is a new Android FE in town! The Gamesome Frontend.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.vektor.gamesome

I haven't used it yet because I just found out about it today. The one in this thread looks like it would've been much flashier so I do hope it eventually gets resurrected and they can both coexist.


fish_

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #121 on: March 15, 2014, 12:38:05 pm »
Hello.

I have a suggestion to make. For those who own the same type of Android stick as the one used in this project, one additional option to consider is installing Linux via a Micro-SD card and compiling the required emulators. As you can see from
of my MK808 stick's desktop, I have managed to compile several Retroarch cores on an optimised Linux distribution and implement custom launchers for each game. For those wanting something more striking than custom launchers, installing an emulator front-end or configuring an animated desktop dock would be viable options.

The performance of the various Libretro cores on my system seemingly matches that of their Android equivalents, though I should note that I have not yet managed to successfully compile the N64 core. (It doesn't officially support ARMv7 architecture, leading to a variety of installation issues.) This point notwithstanding, I am most impressed at my little stick's ability to operate as both an emulation station and a lightweight desktop replacement.

Being a Linux beginner, the installation process was not without its difficulties. I started by browsing this thread in order to install a pre-configured Ubuntu distribution. The rest involved following instructions from various sources, along with conjuring a few improvisations of my own. I shall not describe these processes yet for brevity's sake, though I would be happy to give a full account of the steps I took if others are interested.

Thank you.

thehammer12

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #122 on: March 20, 2014, 02:00:56 pm »
Hello.

I have a suggestion to make. For those who own the same type of Android stick as the one used in this project, one additional option to consider is installing Linux via a Micro-SD card and compiling the required emulators. As you can see from
of my MK808 stick's desktop, I have managed to compile several Retroarch cores on an optimised Linux distribution and implement custom launchers for each game. For those wanting something more striking than custom launchers, installing an emulator front-end or configuring an animated desktop dock would be viable options.

The performance of the various Libretro cores on my system seemingly matches that of their Android equivalents, though I should note that I have not yet managed to successfully compile the N64 core. (It doesn't officially support ARMv7 architecture, leading to a variety of installation issues.) This point notwithstanding, I am most impressed at my little stick's ability to operate as both an emulation station and a lightweight desktop replacement.

Being a Linux beginner, the installation process was not without its difficulties. I started by browsing this thread in order to install a pre-configured Ubuntu distribution. The rest involved following instructions from various sources, along with conjuring a few improvisations of my own. I shall not describe these processes yet for brevity's sake, though I would be happy to give a full account of the steps I took if others are interested.

Thank you.

I just ordered the MK808 and the MK908ii the other day, I thought about trying that and glad to hear someone else thought about putting linux on it. My only concern is that will I still be able to hook up joysticks and buttons? I would rather not use gaming controllers with it as I have seen some others online do.

fish_

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #123 on: March 22, 2014, 01:53:51 pm »
My only concern is that will I still be able to hook up joysticks and buttons? I would rather not use gaming controllers with it as I have seen some others online do.
Hello.
I attached two controllers to my device via a cheap passive USB hub. Linux detected their axes and buttons without any problems.
Unlike most emulators in Android, I can program my desktop launchers to load bespoke configuration files via simple shell scripts. This way I can customise controls for each rom; my Wii Classic Controller is used in most cases, whereas my arcade stick is used for certain fighting games. When emulating DOS games, I can even use my controllers on games with no pre-programmed joystick support.

thehammer12

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #124 on: March 25, 2014, 12:10:14 am »
My only concern is that will I still be able to hook up joysticks and buttons? I would rather not use gaming controllers with it as I have seen some others online do.
Hello.
I attached two controllers to my device via a cheap passive USB hub. Linux detected their axes and buttons without any problems.
Unlike most emulators in Android, I can program my desktop launchers to load bespoke configuration files via simple shell scripts. This way I can customise controls for each rom; my Wii Classic Controller is used in most cases, whereas my arcade stick is used for certain fighting games. When emulating DOS games, I can even use my controllers on games with no pre-programmed joystick support.

I was thinking about using a USB hub as well and or going with an i-pac, do you think it would be compatible?
so your swamping out controllers depending on the game? Can you post a pic of your setup....if you dont mind.

fish_

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #125 on: March 27, 2014, 06:01:03 pm »
I was thinking about using a USB hub as well and or going with an i-pac, do you think it would be compatible?
so your swamping out controllers depending on the game? Can you post a pic of your setup....if you dont mind.
Hello again.
If the I-PAC is compatible with Ubuntu—as appears to be case—then I would expect it to be recognised by a Linux-enabled MK808. That said, I am far from knowledgeable about such a peripheral.
As for your request,
is an annotated photograph of my system. You will notice that my two game controllers pass through the same adapter, which are thus detected by Linux as a single device with a large number of axes and buttons. Thanks to my shell scripts however, each game is pre-configured to the physical controller and button layout that best suits it.

thehammer12

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #126 on: March 31, 2014, 11:57:21 am »
I was thinking about using a USB hub as well and or going with an i-pac, do you think it would be compatible?
so your swamping out controllers depending on the game? Can you post a pic of your setup....if you dont mind.
Hello again.
If the I-PAC is compatible with Ubuntu—as appears to be case—then I would expect it to be recognised by a Linux-enabled MK808. That said, I am far from knowledgeable about such a peripheral.
As for your request,
is an annotated photograph of my system. You will notice that my two game controllers pass through the same adapter, which are thus detected by Linux as a single device with a large number of axes and buttons. Thanks to my shell scripts however, each game is pre-configured to the physical controller and button layout that best suits it.

Good set up right there, you should at least throw it in a bartop kit or something. I think it would be pretty cool if you did that.

 Im definitely gonna go that route with the i-pac w/ linux but I gotta do more research before I mess this up haha.

spongebobgorilla

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #127 on: April 01, 2014, 04:20:31 am »
The frontend now launches directly into MAME games using custom shortcuts  ;D.  These shortcuts need data to identify the rom and this data is passed to my modified build of RetroArch.

Custom shortcuts are easily created with the Tasker App



How exactly does the rom name get passed to Retroarch. I'm trying to replicatethis but having trouble with the code. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

degenatrons

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #128 on: April 01, 2014, 05:19:53 am »
The frontend now launches directly into MAME games using custom shortcuts  ;D.  These shortcuts need data to identify the rom and this data is passed to my modified build of RetroArch.

Custom shortcuts are easily created with the Tasker App



How exactly does the rom name get passed to Retroarch. I'm trying to replicatethis but having trouble with the code. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

My modified build of retroarch reads data from the shortcut to determine which rom to launch.
For the fontend,  I'm using Javascript within the HTML/webview to launch a task with romname as a parameter.  The task launches the rom and does various other rom specific stuff if resources exist e.g. display bezels.

Code: [Select]
performTask('launch',10,romname,0);
I've been away for a while but will be picking up work on this again as there seems to be a lot of interest in it.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2014, 05:21:42 am by degenatrons »

spongebobgorilla

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #129 on: April 01, 2014, 05:41:44 am »
There certainly is. is there any chance you can release an APK or your modded retroarch, as this is the only emulator i'm having trouble creating shortcuts for. Or perhaps provide a more detailed instruction on how to modify it ourselves?

Keep up the good work though...

fish_

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #130 on: April 01, 2014, 03:39:22 pm »
Im definitely gonna go that route with the i-pac w/ linux but I gotta do more research before I mess this up haha.
As a preliminary piece of advice, it is important to ensure you have suitable accessories. Few have faith in the unbranded power supply bundled with the MK808, so a replacement PSU is strongly recommended. I use a 2.1 amp model that I found for a reasonable price on Amazon. A Class 10 Micro SD card is also an advisable purchase, though it may be possible to boot to Linux directly from a USB device.

degenatrons

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #131 on: April 01, 2014, 04:56:05 pm »
Im definitely gonna go that route with the i-pac w/ linux but I gotta do more research before I mess this up haha.
As a preliminary piece of advice, it is important to ensure you have suitable accessories. Few have faith in the unbranded power supply bundled with the MK808, so a replacement PSU is strongly recommended. I use a 2.1 amp model that I found for a reasonable price on Amazon. A Class 10 Micro SD card is also an advisable purchase, though it may be possible to boot to Linux directly from a USB device.
I had considered Linux on MK808 before setting out with the Android stuff.  I've previously installed Picuntu as per this step by step guide on the miniand forum.  Basic install was straight-forward but I had driver issues (video and network) and found myself spending lots of time troubleshooting and not making progess.  That's why I dropped the idea.  If i'm honest,  I was only looking to Linux at the time because it was more familiar to me.  I had planned to use Puppy Linux.
I found power supply issues on MK808 were resolved after update to latest Minix HFW firmware.  I've never had a problem with the bundled supply.

degenatrons

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #132 on: April 01, 2014, 05:07:54 pm »
There certainly is. is there any chance you can release an APK or your modded retroarch, as this is the only emulator i'm having trouble creating shortcuts for. Or perhaps provide a more detailed instruction on how to modify it ourselves?

Keep up the good work though...
Thanks.  My plan is to make the modded retroarch available with install instructions.  It will likely be a prerequisite for andMAME.

crawlingpeter

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #133 on: April 01, 2014, 11:22:58 pm »
I've been away for a while but will be picking up work on this again as there seems to be a lot of interest in it.

This is seriously the best news I've heard all week! I know I would personally be not be opposed to paying quite a bit for a finished version of this.

Also, would it be possible for your project to use the Android intents RetroArch already has in place?

degenatrons

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #134 on: April 02, 2014, 07:50:18 am »
I'm taking a look at the latest retroarch v1.0.0.2.
Noticed that the latest build v1.0.0.2-r36 available on playstore doesn't include MAME cores. I could've installed manually but to keep things simple have picked up an earlier release from their download page.

http://www.libretro.com/index.php/downloads/
RetroArch-armv7-v1.0.0.2-r34.apk

The build includes these MAME cores.
MAME 2003 (0.78)  - Older MAME which is less demanding on resources and good for mobile devices
MAME 2010 (0.139) - Intended for more powerful devices.  Same as MAME4Droid.  CPS3 support is included.

Here's the changelog.  Not much in there about Android.
http://www.libretro.com/index.php/retroarch-1-0-0-2-changelog/

I was hoping to see intents added to simplify integration with andMAME frontend.  I'll take a look at the code to see if anything is changed in that respect.

crawlingpeter

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #135 on: November 27, 2014, 09:15:03 am »
Even though I had forgotten about this thread for a while, RetroArch has been improving in every category since the last time you posted so maybe they have fixed all the issues that were getting in the way?!

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #136 on: September 18, 2016, 09:55:21 am »
Hi.  I decided to use my android tv box as a processor of my bartop
arcade machine.  Therefore i set a frontend to android tv box so it launches bu holding
android background.

I used the follwing apks
nova launcher (set as default home manager)
and a startup apk (set mame to start automatically)

Here is the link in youtube


RetroDevil#2

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Re: Making an Android Frontend (Android 2600:Part 1)
« Reply #137 on: December 29, 2021, 09:01:49 am »
Ahoy !!
So I love this project .
Me and the boys are jumping into making a open sourced android frontend now .

We have been reverse engineering DIG frontend and stuff like that .
This project is very cool and also deserves a look. 


I have been trying to recreate your project as well.
I don't understand a few things .
Retrying and review this thread today .

A few things that really stand out
built in bezels
System on page then folder with roms .
Ability to add virtually anything.


« Last Edit: December 29, 2021, 09:06:01 am by RetroDevil#2 »