Amiga Emulation with E-UAE on Ubuntu 32 and 64 Bit

Posted by on Dec 1, 2008 in Games, Ubuntu6 comments

Amiga A500 Kickstart 1.3 ROMSpeedball, Canon Fodder, Alien Breed, Flood, Defender of the Crown, Powermonger… the list of classic Amiga games is not quite endless, but is certainly far longer than I can be bothered compiling.

A recent bout of nostalgia had me searching obsessively for Amiga games, and a way to play them. UAE and WinUAE have been around for a while, and, so it seems, as E-UAE, which is a fork of UAE and adopts features form WinUAE. Cool! The application is available in a variaety of forms, from precompiled 32 bit binaries and 64 bit binaries, to the source tarball itself. I opted for the source code, and set about compiling it myself. If you don’t have the tools to compile from source, they need installing – from a Terminal (Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal) run

sudo apt-get install build-essential

Cannon Fodder

To compile the source is a pretty simple procedure:

wget http://rcdrummond.net/uae/e-uae-0.8.29-WIP4/e-uae-0.8.29-WIP4.tar.bz2
tar -jxvf e-uae-0.8.29-WIP4.tar.bz2
cd e-uae-0.8.29-WIP4
./configure –with-sdl-gfx –with-sdl-sound
make

More compile options are explained in the file docs/compile.txt which can be viewed by running:

more docs/compile.txt

Once the code had compiled, it can be installed by running:

sudo make install

However, I used a rather cool tool called checkinstall, which produces a .deb file, which can be installed, and therefore tracked by dpkg. It needs installing first:

sudo apt-get install checkinstall

To create the deb package, and have checkinstall automatically install it, run it as root <This article has been interrupted by my Wife requesting I give our Daughter a bath. I apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, and service will resume as soon as possible :) >

Defender of the Crown

Anyway, where was I? Run checkinstall as root to have it auto install:

sudo checkinstall

You’ll need to answer a couple of basic questions – adding a Description and such, but the final options should look a little something like this:

0 - Maintainer: [ username@host ]
1 - Summary: [ The enhanced version of UAE, the UNIX Amiga Emulator ]
2 - Name: [ e-uae-0.8.29 ]
3 - Version: [ 0.8.29-WIP4 ]
4 - Release: [ 1 ]
5 - License: [ GPL ]
6 - Group: [ checkinstall ]
7 - Architecture: [ amd64 ]
8 - Source location: [ e-uae-0.8.29-WIP4 ]
9 - Alternate source location: [ ]
10 - Requires: [ ]
11 - Provides: [ uae ]

If you just want to build the deb package, without installing, you can run:

checkinstall --install=no

This will create .deb file in the e-uae-0.8.29-WIP4 directory (I’ve already compiled if for AMD64, so if it’s easier to download than to compile, etc. grabe it here: e-uae-0829_0829-wip4-1_amd64.deb).

If you have the .deb file, simply run:

sudo dpkg -i e-uae-0829_0829-wip4-1_amd64.deb

Either way, once it’s installed, it can be run from the Terminal:

uae

Or by creating a new menu item pointing to the uae binary.

Shadow of the Beast

The last thing required to run Amiga games, is a Kickstart ROM (preferably v1.3!). There a few methods for obtaining one – you can buy one from http://www.amigaforever.com; you can use an application such as TransROM or GrabKick from within Workbench/Shell on your Amiga to dump the ROM to a file, then transfer the file from your Amiga to your PC, or, you can probably acquire a ROM file via a Google search. Personally, I opted for the latter – I already own 2 A500s, but since they’re in the UK, and I’m in Thailand, it kind of makes sense…

Anyway, once I had the Kickstart ROM, I created a directory in which to keep it, and my games:

cd ~/
mkdir -p amiga/rom
mkdir amiga/games

and extracted the ROM file to ~/amiga/rom then started E-UAE:

uae

then navigated to the Memory tab, and clicked “Change” under Kickstart ROM File, selecting the ~/amiga/rom/kick.rom file. Tweak whatever settings you like – I increased the memory to a whole 1Mb (don’t laugh – a 512kb RAM upgrade was expensive in those days!), then saved the Configuration from the File menu. This creates a text file called .uaerc in your home directory, which can either be edited via the UAE GUI or directly in a Text editor such as vi, pico, gedit etc.

E-UAE Setu

That’s it – once it’s set up, it’s a simple case of inserting the disks, and starting up the Emulator. Games will come as .adf files (Amiga Disk Files), so once you have an archive containing them, extract them to ~/amiga/games then in the Floppy Disks tab of E-UAE point each “drive” to the game disks:

e-uae-insert-disks

Speedball 2

By the way, if you’re even more Old Skool, then you might want to check out my previous post on Speccy 48k Emulation: Retro: Sinclair ZX Spectrum 48k on Ubuntu 64 Bit.

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