MAME Installation

From Retro Arcade Guides

The MAME Torrents available on Pleasuredome were created in a way that their contents can be used directly in MAME or frontends, without the need of copying, moving, renaming, compressing, or extracting any files or folders.


Setting up MAME

Create the ini files with the appropriate command:

mame -createconfig


Edit the mame.ini file created on the same folder of the emulator executable and add the corresponding paths. Example:

rompath                   roms;C:\PD\MAME ROMs;C:\PD\MAME CHDs;C:\PD\MAME SL ROMs;C:\PD\MAME SL CHDs
samplepath                samples;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\samples
artpath                   artwork;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\artwork
ctrlrpath                 ctrlr;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\ctrlr
cheatpath                 cheat;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\cheat
snapshot_directory        snap;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\snap;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\snap_SL


The cheat.7z, snap.zip and snap_SL.zip archives in the root folder of the MAME EXTRAs are seen by MAME as folders.

For the cheats to work, you need to manually enable them. To do that, you have two options:


1) Edit the mame.ini file (permanent change):

cheat                     1


2) Start the emulator with the following command (must be done every time you play):

mame gamename -cheat


Edit the ui.ini file created on the same folder of the emulator executable and add the corresponding paths. Example:

historypath               history;dats;.;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\dats
categorypath              folders;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs\folders
cabinets_directory        cabinets;cabdevs;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
cpanels_directory         cpanel;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
pcbs_directory            pcb;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
flyers_directory          flyers;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
titles_directory          titles;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
ends_directory            ends;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
marquees_directory        marquees;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
artwork_preview_directory "artwork preview;artpreview";C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
bosses_directory          bosses;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
logos_directory           logo;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
scores_directory          scores;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
versus_directory          versus;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
gameover_directory        gameover;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
howto_directory           howto;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
select_directory          select;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
icons_directory           icons;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs
covers_directory          covers;C:\PD\MAME EXTRAs


The hiscore plugin is for games that didn't save the score when the machine was turned off or unplugged (not all machines had NVRAM to keep their high scores):

plugins                   1
plugin                    hiscore


The contents of the MAME Multimedia torrent (soundtrack, videosnaps and videosnaps_SL) can't be used by MAME; they are supposed to be used by frontends.


Setting up Software Lists on MAMEUI

The software which is in software lists is controlled by XML files found in the hash folder (defined by hashpath in mame.ini).

MAMEUI is a bit different than MAME: mame.ini is in the ini folder.

If nothing shows on the "SW Items" tab, then either the machine has no Software Lists, or the hash files were not found.

If the hash files exist, MAME will look for the Software Lists' files in the ROMs folder(s) defined by rompath in mame.ini, by default the roms folder.


Loose software are software that are not part of MAME's Software Lists (files that were picked up here and there).

The idea is to have a separate folder structure for them.

The root of the folder where these files are is by default the software folder (defined by swpath in mame.ini).

If you won't use loose software, you don't have to set up this folder.

In the GUI this folder is called "Software File Base".

Make a subdirectory for each system, named however you want.

Let's say you have some extra Genesis ROMs, so in my case I have E:\DATA as my "Software File Base", then I have E:\DATA\Genesis for loose Genesis games.

So, right-click on the machine "Sega Genesis (USA, NTSC)", select Properties, click on the "Software" tab, insert the Genesis folder, click on OK.

Then click some other system then Genesis, and those extra ROMs will show up on the "SW Files" tab.

The main thing is that both "Software File Base", and the game's folder be set up and actually exist, and be different from each other. If you don't do that, nothing shows in "SW Files".


See also