edge + slot 2 ez 3in 1 for gba games, NDStation, exploader

Discussion in 'EDGE' started by pikoko, Mar 12, 2011.

  1. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    I need help setting up my flash card / microsdhc correctly so I can play both nds games and gba games.

    I use the following:

    DS Lite USA version
    EDGE DS slot 1 normal using latest firmware/OS
    slot 2 ez V 3-in-1
    kingston 8gb class 4 microsdhc

    I want to be able to run my .nds roms from the edge OS, since they're auto dldi patched and I can download the new firmware for compatibility, that's pretty easy.
    I currently have a folder for lameboy for gb games, and that works fine booting from the edge OS.

    basically, the problem I run into is with gba games. I like being able to just boot into my Edge OS and click on a rom file and run it, so I used ndstation initially. but I ran into all sorts of problems with memory types and patching, saves disappearing. (the saves disappearing only seemed to start happening after I bought and started using my 3-in-1, however. ) I always used gbata to sram patch my .gba's before converting them, but now I hear certain save types won't work with this program? I also have my GBA.cfg file for ndstation in my root and a /gba/ folder for my gba game .nds files. the .cfg file when opened in a text editor seems to only have one FAT save recorded...

    I read the english readme for exploader, question: what is the no multisave feature, what is gbaframe and where do I get it? Also, can I hide files/ folders on my edge menu if I don't want to see the system and save folders for exploader? If I have the exploader ini in my sdcard root, can I put the exploader .nds file in a subfolder along with my gba games?

    I still prefer having .nds bootable gba files on my microsd card though, so I want to make the majority of my games work through ndstation. (I have a feeling it won't work for something like migrating pokemon from gba to pearl or diamond though, if it's .nds ...)



    LONG STORY SHORT:
    the gba games I want to play are as follows, I'd like specific instructions on how to convert them to work with ndstation. pokemon games I will keep as gba for exploader, if people answer my above questions on the program. I had been using an older version of ndstation (1.1). found 1.2.1 on the official site, but when I used it to convert games they never ran, just showed the ndstation splash eternally. Also when should I, if ever, check the use psram box on ndstation? could mixing psram roms with roms not using it be causing my saves to disappear?
    the ndstation readme mentioned mixing nor and psram saves.

    Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (8mb)
    Golden Sun (8mb) FLASH_V123 (512Kbit)
    Golden Sun 2 Lost age (16mb)
    metroid fusion (8mb)
    (Pokemon fire red / leaf green / ruby / sapphire (all 16mb, might be best to put these on exploader)
    metroid zero mission (?mb)
    pokemon pinball ruby sapphre (8mb)
    sonic advance (8mb)
    sonic advance 2 + 3 (16 mb)
    super dodgeball advance (8mb)
    super mario advance (4 mb)
    super mario advance 2 (super mario world) (4 mb)
    super mario advance 4 ( super mario bros 3) (4 mb) FLASH1M_V102 (1024Kbit)
    legend of zelda - minish cap (16 mb)


    ((I'm also considering getting a 16gb microsdhc card because I've filled my 8gb, would a class 2 be sufficient? I can only find lesser namebrands for class 4's.))
     
  2. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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  3. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    the microsdhc speed issue was more a question for DS games, especially more demanding ones if I get a dsi in the future. I assume GBA Frame is just a skin judging by the name.. is that correct? Optional feature?

    I was also looking at the apps here: http://gbatemp.net/t4562-gba-tools-and-software can gbata correctly handle eeprom 124 roms, or should I use the gbatemp software for those? Would I need to still SRAM patch roms that I put through a program such as GBAtemp EEPROM v124 Patcher /1024Kbit Flash Patcher/Flash Advance Toolkit? Since these programs are for gba flash carts, and if I recall SRAM is what the DS uses? (I did some research and SMA4, the big problem game, uses flash 1024k. so I should probably convert it to 64k (1024kbit flash patcher readme says 64k or 128k) and then sram patch?)

    Perhaps that was part of the reason for the disappearing saves - I used gbata to sram patch games it couldn't handle / save types it couldn't handle. Maybe using these programs first, then sram patching the resulting fixed save type rom would work better.

    Out of curiosity is there a way to use ndstation 1.2.1 (newest I know of) and have it create playable roms, not just sit on the summer coding challenge splash screen when I try to run them?

    If I decide to put my pokemon games for use with exploader would I still need to sram patch them? I assume I'd SRAM patch first, then apply the secondary (rtc you said?) patch if needed.
     
  4. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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    anything higer than a class 4 will work fine without artifacting.

    That list of tools is out dated, and is mostly covers for a wide range of flashcarts. Several don't work with the 3in1. For example, the last update to that list was in 2005 and pokemon emerald came out in 2007.

    Most compatible tools for the 3in1 are the 3in1 tool and most patchers that come out after 2007.

    http://www.ezflash.cn/zip/3in1tool.zip

    I don't use ndstation, so I can't help you on that on any specifics.

    GBA exploader already does a SRAM patch for any game that is not normally compatible. You only need to RTC patch any pokemon game your trying to run.


    There are NO RTC PATCHES for pokemon emerald.
     
  5. relminator

    Member relminator GBAtemp Fan

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    Edge + GBA exploader == Win

    I used that combo playing Aria of Sorrow.

    Unless you change your minf often(Like wanting to play Golden Sun before even finishing CAOS), NOR mode is the mode to play GBA games.
     
  6. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    I do change my mind often, I switch between games often. NOR mode is what ndstation defaults to when you don't check the psram option I assume... What';s the process to run gba roms in exploader if I do commonly switch out games before finishing them? (hence why I have so many on my flash cart at one time) is there a specific mode I need to use / button combo / etc


    how do I do that: when you say no rtc patches for emerald, you mean it doesn't require one, or one just doesn't exist so it can't be used on a flash cart properly?

    16gb microsdhc's are hard to find above class 2... looked at some class 4 on amazon but some reportedly were relabeled knockoffs ):

    Hopefully someone around here uses ndstation, but it seems it's a rather defunct tool sadly.
     
  7. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    so if I wanted to often change which gba game I'm playing and be able to load saves from multiple games, how would I do this with exploader?

    for instance. play some golden sun, save. reboot DS. play some other gba game. save. reboot. be able to load up golden sun again or a previous game and have it load the save from before.

    also read more about RTC.... I can play pokemon games that have rtc patches with edge and 3 in 1 but not emerald unless I had an m3 + m3 GEP or another combo that has RTC support, correct?

    I'm probably not getting a DSi, so if I needed another dslite slot 1 / 2 combo solution that would make my complicated play style easier, what would be suggested? I was considering r4DS original with WOOD or acekard2, I hear they're better for GBA loading? what slot 2 cards if any are good for those. also should I get the "i" versions of the r4, m3, or acekard even though I have a dSlite, simply for the fact they're newer and hopefuly more supported (firmware updates etc)
     
  8. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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    If you want the information on the combinations, you can use the first link in sig.
     
  9. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    I have read the link, I'm just a little overwhelmed and thinking of getting a new slot 1 so I can use an integrated gba loader, rumble function, or a slot 2 with RTC.

    also, is running the sram test and comparing the results a viable option for finding what version 3 in 1 I have? I'm very concerned about opening it and not being able to put it back together. Since ndstation works only with 3 in 1 GEP v1, I should find out what version I have.

    In the meantime it seems that clean roms with exploader would be best and are compatible with the most versions of the 3 in 1. If I want to do the "play some golden sun, save. reboot DS. play some other gba game. save. reboot. be able to load up golden sun again or a previous game and have it load the save from before." scenario with gba roms using exploader, does it matter if I use NOR or psram mode? PSRAM is for 16 mb and under games only I know (but some of my 16 mb games are 16384kb, and exploader readme says only up to 16000KB. can I still run these in PSRAM mode? or will only my 4 and 8mb games work in psram?). However, I don't know if it has any advantage over NOR? I don't care about load times, I only care about the ease of switching between different games and being able to automatically load the appropriate save file even after switching between games without having to manually back them up (except for emergencies of course). It should just make a .sav after I save in-game and turn off the ds no matter which mode I use, right? Some sources online warn against using both psram and nor modes, I assume this is only applicable for when you load the same game in different memory modes, not mixing games.

    basically, all my gba games are 4, 8, or 16 mb (16384KB). I just want to know what mode to run them from to preserve the saves for all of them even if I alternate games, and if I need to use a specific mode for the 16 mb games.

    also if i need to sram patch a game, should I use the patches at nofrills, or use gbata/ez4 tool? I assume the ips patches at nofrills are preferable? Most games can be autosram patched by exploader, the readme lists nearly all the save types I've encountered so far. if there are any games you KNOW don't work with exploader's auto function?

    so much stuff to understand ): thanks for the help and please try to explain how I should go about running my games from exploader step by step.
     
  10. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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    Most people use gba exploader because ndstation doesn't support any of the new 3in1s.

    You can keep using the Edge card if you want. If you plan to use the M3 GEP, you will need to use either gba exploader with your Edge card or get the M3 Real/Zero, because no other slot1 can use the M3 GEP.

    There is only one GBA mode if you have a M3 GEP, SDRAM mode (same thing as PSRAM except it is 32MB in size).

    The link is just a collection of patches, as to it being the prefered list, I can care less. Most pokemon players are oblivious to certain things, which creates a blind spot in thier understanding. Obvious signs that the blind spot is the shock that they have to patch something instead of it just working mentality that comes from them. There are also several patches uploaded to the download section (filetrip) which they could have just used to search for.

    You don't need to use gbata/ez4 tool/3in1tool/etc unless you have to. The problem is that ndstation is that it doesn't do any of the patching for you, so you have to apply patches manually. Sometimes people don't find out that they have to patch the game until after they do all that work to get it running in the first place.

    The best situation is to use gba exploader and the M3 GEP for all pokemon games, that way you don't have to use any kind of patch what so ever and use whatever setup you prefer for all others.
     
  11. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    I'm fine manually patching games, I just wasn't sure if I should do it through a program or download a readymade patch, seeing as there are lots of different rom release versions floating around with different crc's. wasn't sure if premade patches would work right if you had a different rom than the person who made it.

    I just updated the firmware on my EDGE and made my preliminary exploader folders for my gba games. Should I sram patch the games that are flash/eeprom/1mbit/etc before trying them?

    also you say ndstation doesn't support any of the new 3 in 1's, so even if i manually sram patched the games I used with ndstation, it's a moot point if my 3 in 1 isn't rev 1, correct? so right now I'm changing over to using exploader instead. can you give me instructions on how to run my different sized games like I described? also please explain which roms I should run in psram or nor. is the 16384kbit filesize a problem since the exploader readme said 16000kb? and are 16000kb/16mb roms ok in nor, and only 32 mb are too big for that, or is it 4 and 8 mb work in nor but 16mb and up are too big. not that I have any 32 mb games.

    I'm sticking with edge and 3 in 1 right now, might buy a single m3 to use with my pokemon games only as you suggested. the edge, exploader, and m3 combo would work with RTC in all pokemon games and not require patching as you say?

    ((( don't need immediate help with this but it's something I'm thinking about: in the future if my edge becomes too painstaking to use, 3ds gets cracked, or I buy a dsiXL I will explore cards like the acekard2 with default firmware or akaio for integrated loader, or a supercardDS2, although the fact that it's a gba emulator instead of hardware is a bit of a downgrade.

    I don't know what the best card choices for ease of use / compatibility / gba rom playing are with a DSi/XL since you can't use a slot 2 with that setup. '

    if I had to buy a new card for my lite what would you reccomend? maybe a real cyclods, acekard 2, or r4 (so many models of r4 though, dunno if the i versions are better even on a lite)))
     
  12. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    so what mode do I use in exploader? for example Golden sun 2 is 16,384 KB. Is that required to run in NOR?If I can run smaller games in PSRAM, will the saves still auto backup to my slot 1 and load when I switch between games loaded in different types of memory? I often load different games, save, and then load another looking for a saved file. should I run all my games in NOR for this reason? also I should use 0.58b, correct?

    also when I used the sram function to patch a flash save type game, reopening the save type still displays as flash just with (patched) after, not sram. is that ok?
     
  13. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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    If you plan to play GS2 for a while, you want to load it to NOR, it will save some time on loading the game. If your going to play it only a few times, PSRAM mode is will do since the game is only 16MB.

    The choice of loaders to use is mostly yours, depending on what 3in1 you got might limit you to certain loaders.

    PSRAM : 16MB or less in size
    NOR : any size upto 32MB

    The NOR has a finite number of writes, if I remember correctly it is either 10000 or 20000 writes. Erasing is also considered the use of a write. If your gonna go and say WTF on this, it takes more than 5 years for you to hit the write limit. The read limit is unlimited.

    In general to extend the life of a 3in1's NOR, you normally want to run as many games in PSRAM if you can. Use NOR only on 32MB roms and games you plan to play alot.

    The battery in the 3in1 will give up eventually. There is a section on maintainace in the 3in1 guide, works for both the 3in1 and M3 GEP.

    As for the patching, GBA Exploader does a decent job at on-the-fly SRAM patching a game. You only need to SRAM patch a game manually when the on-the-fly SRAM patching fails. Manually SRAM patching will save you some time in loading if you play games where the games come with EEPROM or something.
     
  14. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    ok, makes sense; I prefer PSRAM anyway and if it saves me trouble... Will exploader throw an error if the sram patch fails? In another thread you said "Save types that require patching are EEPROM and Flash512 and Flash1M." And elsewhere I heard gbata can't handle flash1m patching.

    I tried using the ez4 client but it crashes a lot and is a bit clunky for gba patching. When I select the new save type and size and click send, it patches the new file, correct? Now, if I had an eeprom / flash(anyver)512 or flash 1m and was patching it to SRAM in ez4client, but wasn't sure what size sram to use for the 3 in 1 and edge combo. it gives choices from 0k, 64k, 128k, 256k, 512k.

    I tested GS1 and castlevania, so far so good. ((I read on a forum post elsewhere that I have to run exploader once more to backup saves on the next boot before running a DS rom or I risk my saves being deleted. I think this was only in regards to NOR though.))
     
  15. how_do_i_do_that

    Member how_do_i_do_that Blue Wizard is about to die.

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    If the sram patching fails, you see it as a corrupt save or save missing.
     
  16. pikoko
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    Newcomer pikoko Member

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    is the M3 GEP the same as the m3 slot 2 lite/ lite pro? If not, is it the same as the rumble expansion packed here: http://shoptemp.net/products/M3-DS-Real.html (I doubt it. the pack that specifically says it comes with the GEP is sold out..) any idea if the m3 GEP is still available for purchase anywhere? if not is there an updated m3 slot 2 card for ds-lite that supports RTC/gba linkage?
     

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