A GUIDE FOR DEPENDABLE TAITO GNET CF CARD WRITING WITHOUT MICRO$OFT WINDOZE (ALMOST)

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    • A GUIDE FOR DEPENDABLE TAITO GNET CF CARD WRITING WITHOUT MICRO$OFT WINDOZE (ALMOST)

      Hey Everyone,

      Do you have a newly upgraded/BIOS flashed (2011 Bios) Taito G-NET board ready for CF games? Have you been trying to write/flash your ____ CF card with limited to no success in Windoze 7 or higher? Do you keep getting Unable to open file or error writing hunk 0 errors from your current version of MAME's CHDMAN? Do you get odd errors from whatever version of GNETFlasher.exe you happen to be using (eg. CF reader/writer not showing up, stops writing half way, unable to start write, etc.)? Have you tried just about every guide on the internets concerning getting this to work on a Windoze system, only to come away thinking your CF cards, CF reader/writer or version of Windoze is keeping you from making a valid GNET card? Do you have access to a physical (or virtual machine) of MAC (OSX) or some form of Linux? Well then this guide is for you.

      REQUIRED ITEMS:
      • Reliable USB Compact Flash reader/writer (or some type of PCMCIA reader/writer to use with PCMCIA CF Adapter)
      • A Compact Flash Card (64MB to 2GB; although 64MB should be more than enough for most games/conversions)
      • A Reliable PCMCIA (PC Card) CF Adapter (SanDisk brand seem to be the most dependable)
      • A Physical (or Virtual; untested) Mac/OSX system or Linux variant able to read/write to USB devices
      • ***A Windoze system (VM is fine too) to run CHDMAN for CHD image extraction
      NOTE:
      *** SDLMAME's CHDMAN can be used instead for this task, making it completely *NIX based. This, however, will also require the SDL Runtime Library installed before hand.

      INSTRUCTIONS (Tested with a MAC; Not verified on *NIX, but should work):
      1. On a Windoze system, use MAME's CHDMAN.exe utility to extract your chosen game to an .img file (example below is version .146 or higher).\path\to\chdman extracthd -i [tt]\path\to\chaoshea.chd -o \path\to\chaoshea.img
      2. Move/copy your new image file to the MAC/NIX system.
      3. Connect your CF reader/writer (or PCMCIA CF-Adapter) to your MAC/NIX system.
      4. Verify the drive's location in the DEV chain by doing one of the following from a terminal window:
        MAC > sudo diskutil list*NIX > sudo fdisk -l
      5. Review the output of the command, and locate the root disk that matches your connected device. Assuming you only have one internal disk and nothing else attached, on a MAC this would be /dev/disk1 and on *NIX this would be /dev/sdX (X is the main letter that matches up with the USB chain, usually "a").
      6. (If you already know your CF Card is zeroed out/raw, skip to next step) Zero out your CF Card; this example shows this happening to disk1(OSX)/sda(NIX):
        MAC > sudo diskutil zeroDisk /dev/disk1*NIX > sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sda
      7. Write the GNET image file to your newly zeroed card (the "r" is to write to the RAW block device; not essential, but does speed things up):
        MAC > sudo dd if=/path/to/chaoshea.img of=/dev/rdisk1*NIX > sudo dd if=/path/to/chaoshea.img of=/dev/sda
      8. Unmount/Eject the CF/PCMCIA card from the OS.
      9. Place the CF Card in your PCMCIA Adapter (if not already there), and load into your Taito G-NET board.
      10. Power on your JAMMA system.
      If everything worked without errors to this point, you should see your G-NET system load with two progress bars: the first for loading the game into RAM, and the second for preparing the loaded RAM for initialization.

      TROUBLESHOOTING:
      • If you see the following error 000001 SYSTEM ERROR to 0006XX SYSTEM ERROR, this means the card was recognized, but does not work correctly for some reason.
      • If you see 000777 SYSTEM ERROR, this means your BIOS wasn't correctly flashed (outside of the scope of this guide).
      • If you don't see any system errors, the game loads, but then stops abruptly after initialization/loops repeatedly through color-bars and attempts to reset, this usually means the CF card itself is not compatible (NOW you can buy a new card).



      I hope this guide saves someone a headache (and money in their wallet from buying unnecessary tools/parts that may/may not fix anything).

      The post was edited 1 time, last by lowlight: New information concerning CHDMAN. ().

    • Solid guide. I just use a bash script on ubuntu. It should work fine on a mac too since you're already using dd. I run it on a system with only one disk, so I know the CF will always be /dev/sdb. It should go without saying to set the device first if your PC has multiple hard drives, or you can accidentally erase data ;)

      I leave this in a directory with all the raw files (extracted CHDs). Run it with the game name as the only argument and it will erase/flash $device for you. Use the whole block device (i.e. $device should not be /dev/sdb1 but just /dev/sdb)

      Shell-Script

      1. #!/bin/bash
      2. #Set device path
      3. device=/dev/sdb
      4. if [ -z $1 ]
      5. then
      6. echo "Please provide a game name! exiting"
      7. exit 1
      8. else
      9. echo "Flashing $1 to $device"
      10. fi
      11. #check for mounted partition
      12. if [ -b "$device"1 ]
      13. then
      14. echo "unmounting $device1"
      15. umount "$device"1
      16. else
      17. echo "device is unmounted, proceeding."
      18. fi
      19. #check for card itself. #doesn't work. /dev/sdb exists regardless
      20. #if [ -b "$device" ]
      21. #then
      22. #echo "card is present. Proceeding with flash."
      23. #else
      24. #echo "No card found. Exiting"
      25. #fi
      26. #prompt to erase the card.
      27. echo "Erase first? (recommended). y/n (or ctrl-c to abort flash)"
      28. read erasecard
      29. if [ $erasecard == "y" ]
      30. then
      31. echo "Erasing card. THIS WILL TAKE A WHILE. BE PATIENT."
      32. dd if=/dev/zero of=$device
      33. else
      34. echo "Not erasing card. Proceeding anyway"
      35. fi
      36. sleep 5s
      37. # final flash
      38. echo "writing card. THIS WILL TAKE A WHILE. BE PATIENT"
      39. dd if=$1 of=$device
      40. echo "Done. Have a nice day :)"
      Display All
    • jugu wrote:

      skate323k137 wrote:

      Solid guide. I just use a bash script on ubuntu. It should work fine on a mac too since you're already using dd...
      Nice script. It would need to be modified slightly for mac use, as drives are usually mounted as /dev/disk1, /dev/disk2, /dev/disk3, etc.
      Precisely, it would have to be altered for that reason (diskX versus sdX). I should stress that main reason I chose to forgo scripted solutions in general for the guide was because, without explaining the script's logic, would obfuscate the inner workings of what's happening on a *NIX type system for folks that don't usually drill down. When I was first starting off in my collecting, I often found that there were a good deal of well meaning tuts and guides that would sometimes (unintentionally) tersely run you through a thing, leaving you to either sink or swim. I have a lot of Jr. Software Engineers that work for me in my normal day job that I typically can't take that sort of approach with; it's best if the steps are explained and laid out for them. So, it's colored my writing style as a result. That all being said, I had always assumed more savvy hobbyists would automate my guide in very short order. I'm glad the info in general is useful!
    • nem wrote:

      Micro$oft Windoze! It's like I stepped back in time 20 years!
      Should I have said Micro$haft WinB@it instead ;) ? It's good to hear that your solution worked out for you :) ! I just wanted to provide an alternative route that was *NIX with as few outside/3rd party applications as possible (dd and diskutil are native in their respective Operating Environments; too much 3rd party dependence can add fragility to a solution), as *NIX solutions don't seem to be covered as often in the community at large.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by lowlight: clarification. ().