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Author Topic: windows 98se to linux version for mame cab.  (Read 5463 times)

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windows 98se to linux version for mame cab.
« on: September 06, 2008, 02:47:59 pm »
Ok I am trying to get Mame and mamewah to run on my old Compaq 5000us series, very very old hardware. It came with window me installed and already had numerous virus and problems. So I formatted the hard drive and installed windows xp, but due to the old hardware it ran SLOW! So I downgraded to windows 98se, but having WAY too many problems just setting up Mame command line. SO I decided I want to run linux on the machine being the fact it would run better with littler problems. Now I have never used Linux so this is the first. I don't know what distribution of Linux should I run, I was think Damn Small Linux being the fact it is so small. The problem is the that will it be good to run Mame and Wah!Cad? What is the best recommended Linux for very old hardware, and small, but still run at a good rate?
« Last Edit: September 06, 2008, 03:24:06 pm by emopants92 »
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Re: windows 98se to linux version for mame cab.
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2008, 06:42:22 am »
I suggest you follow these instructions for a "low-memory" install of Ubuntu:

You'll then want to install sdlmame. Ubuntu packages can be found here:

Finally, you'll probably want a frontend. You can try Wah!cade:

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Re: windows 98se to linux version for mame cab.
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2008, 10:43:41 pm »
I would try advancemame, or advancecd... it will give you a very small version of linux to try, and then you might be able to work from there:

But remember, even a large distro can be scaled back to almost nothing.. it is just a matter of turning off the programs that get loaded, and possibly compiling a kernel for your hardware.


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Re: windows 98se to linux version for mame cab.
« Reply #3 on: December 08, 2008, 09:27:39 pm »
I have a Dell Dimension 4600 with a Pentium 2.8ghz and 2gig of ram, and a 256meg video card.   I have this machine on a triple boot:

Windows XP, Puppy Linux, Ubuntu Linux.

I do most of my every day tasks in Ubuntu.  I am keeping Windows for the stuff I can't run under Linux (obviously).   I am using Puppy Linux for experimental purposes. 

In Windows I currently have Mame .100 running with MALA Front End
In Linux I am using SDLMame with WahCade (0.123)

Puppy Linux is a very small Linux distribution that can be set up to run entirely in memory and it is very fast.  I have Pupply Linux set up under Wine, which means it can run Windows programs supported by Wine.

I am a retro gamer and play games from 1978 to 1990.

The results of my testing is this:

1) Windows XP:  To put things in all fairness, I did try Windows XP with Mame 0.123 but I didn't like the way vector games looked/worked in that version, so I went back to version 0.100.  But overall Window XP is the fastest/best.  I could only imaging on a faster machine like mine, Windows 98SE will probably even be faster.

2) SDLMame:   Ubuntu Linux Mame runs fine for the most part on raster games.  Some games that require more system juice will cause the audio to "flutter" a bit, but not much.  However vector games look terrible, even worse than Mame UI 0.123 did in Windows XP.  When playing Star Wars (Atari) there is A LOT of audio skipping.  The game is still playable, but it is annoying.   Tempest distorts.  The vector graphics looked the worst with Gravitar.   I know that there are some vector settings within the Mame.ini configuration file, but I did mess with these settings in both Linux and Windows to make the vectors "look better", but I can say that neither of the version 0.123 vector graphics won me over.   Mame version 0.100 looks WAY better in Windows XP

3) Puppy Linux:   Lets face it, Linux doesn't run as fast as many people will tell you.  Ubuntu Linux runs just marginally faster than Windows XP.    The thing that may make you believe otherwise is the fact that over the years, your average Windows XP system collects so much internet junk that it slows things down...yes even with spyware and virus protection.  And think about it, with all that protection running in the background it does make Windows XP really slow in comparison to Linux.  BUT!!! (A big but here).  If you blast Windows XP and reinstall from scratch and only put what you need on the system, it runs pretty fast.

Now getting back to Puppy.

A few of you here may be familiar with DWJukebox, or by it's more familiar name here:  WinCab.

Well I have used this program as a test subject for tests using Wine in Linux.  First I did some tests with WinCab under Ubuntu Linux and the results were abysmal.  However, I did suspect that using a faster operating system with Wine may help and I was right.  Wincab runs MUCH faster under Wine within Puppy Linux.

One future test I will be looking into will be to try to run Mame UI version 0.100 with Wine under Puppy.   I am hoping to get better results then than I am now running SDLMame within Ubuntu.

If straying away from Ubuntu isn't your game, they do have a slimmed down version of Ubuntu called Xubuntu.   I have not tried this OS out (as of yet), but I do know that Puppy Linux is much smaller than Xubuntu, but it is less flexible.   As I said, I am mostly experimenting with Puppy Linux because it is one of the fastest Linux distributions out there.

With the Puppy/Wine combination, I believe most programs meant for Windows (most mind you as not all Windows programs will work with Wine) should run well.

Still much testing has to be done.

But these are my findings thusfar.

Hopefully they will be helpful to someone.

"Let me tell you about the time I used a sharpened clamshell to turn a T-Rex into a T-Rachel!" -Buck  Ice Age 3