How do I backup VBA Games on a PC?/Rip/etc.

Discussion in 'GBA - Hardware, Devices and Utilities' started by petethepug, Jun 26, 2016.

  1. petethepug
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    petethepug PUG

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    I know its a really silly question but I cannot find any sources that explain how to.
    I am looking to put a few of my old VBA Games on my PC in a ROM Extension, but I cannot seem to figure out how. I only saw this one tutorial of this guy using a DS to rip it successfully but he never explained how it would really work with different carts, or how to install a Homebrew Hacking Method.

    So with that being said... What should I do?
     
  2. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Guru

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    Use a rom copier for GBA games or use a nintendo ds with a flash cart, (Must have slot 2 for gba games) Then use a flashcart with homebrew, it should be easy to find one, it will copy the game to the micro sd card in the flash card.
     
  3. petethepug
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    petethepug PUG

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    Alright, do I need a specific flashcart for the DS, or are they all pretty much just the same thing?
     
  4. Sonic Angel Knight

    Sonic Angel Knight GBAtemp Guru

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    I think any flashcart can work, as long as you can use one of the old ds models that has the slot 2 function (for gba games) Just load the homebrew for the rom copier and do it. Rom files depends on the game and sizes are (Min)4MB 8 MB 16MB 32MB (Max)
     
  5. petethepug
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    petethepug PUG

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    Alright, thanks! :D
     
  6. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Ripping GBA games?

    3 methods worth speaking of

    1) Use a DS or DS lite. It has a nice GBA slot in it which you can access via DS code. That means if you can run DS code via a DS slot flash cart (and any that have DLDI which should be most you will find, certainly if you pick any of the suggested ones it will have it) and can dump games with things like http://filetrip.net/nds-downloads/applications/download-gba-backup-tool-0-21-f3228.html . There are others but they are not as nice as that.
    To run said GBA games in hardware you need a GBA slot flash cart (if you are on a DS then the EZ 3 in 1 or if you want something more standalone then the EZ4 works, there is also the new GBA everdrive but whether it is worth the effort and cost remains to be seen -- it will doubtless be good but the EZ4 near enough does all the same things for a lot less) or something like a DStwo or ismm to run GBA emulators from the DS slot (the DS slot is somewhat slower so it can't run GBA games so the carts instead need extra hardware to do emulation, said emulation not being as nice as real hardware). If you only want to dump games and saves then you only need a DS slot flash cart which can be found for next to nothing.

    2) An old legacy GBA flash cart setup. Two types will work here i) the old serial cable setup (slow as you like and will not work on the DS/DS lite but will get it done) and ii) a so called linker based flash cart which is basically a cradle that writes to the flash cart, however it was easy enough to add game dumping functions to them so most will have that.
    Good luck finding either of those for sale today. You will probably also want a computer (or virtual machine) with windows XP on it as well as nothing I can recall made it across to vista, let alone anything newer. Linux and mac? hahaha.

    3) You build it. http://reinerziegler.de/GBA/gba.htm#cart reader has more. Technically it is not that hard, neither though is buying a $10 DS flash cart (the DS/DS lite have no restrictions like the DSi and 3ds so you can buy any old thing which many companies will be happy to sell you for "get it out of my warehouse" prices.

    I have method 2) available to me and it is pretty sweet, however 1) is not so bad and you could probably chain it with DSftp or something to avoid having to find a card reader if you wanted.
     
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  7. petethepug
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    petethepug PUG

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    Yeah, I am easily getting confused between the three products.
    Gameboy, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance pretty much.

    I might just do the DS Method since it is the easiest, and most simple method out of the two.
    Now that that's over with I was wondering which method of a flashcart would be best. I know I asked this before but I cannot seem to find any good sources for flash carts (For DS.) Except here where it lists where it lists the features of some carts,

    https://gbatemp.net/threads/which-flash-cart-should-i-get.290097/

    I'm thinking of buying a DS-Two but I am concerned if I am going a little overboard with this flash cart since I am only using this for extracting the ROM of the game. Should I just get a R4i instead since it has "real time menu's" ?
     
  8. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Gameboy aka GB
    Old monochrome device. There is also the gameboy pocket which is a smaller version of the gameboy with no significant feature differences beyond that.
    Gameboy Colour aka GBC
    Has a colour screen.
    Has some limited colours, backwards compatible with all GB games. There are GBC exclusives and there are carts that gain features for being in a GBC. There is a very rare and hard to come by version of this with a lit screen, most you find nowadays will be third party mods.
    Gameboy Advance
    A fairly different machine to those before it. The original gameboy advance and gameboy advance SP can play all GB/GBC games too. The GBA micro can not play GB/GBC games. The DS and DS lite also have a GBA slot and can not play GB/GBC games.

    The GB/GBC carts use 5V where the GBA uses 3.3V (look down inside a GBA and you will see a little leg that gets pushed down to activate the mode) so you can not simply dump GB/GBC stuff using GBA hardware. You can do a hackjob on an old thing from 2) in the list above http://mootan.hg.to/fmgbx/ez_fmgbx.html and the same site as before also has a GB/GBC section http://reinerziegler.de/readplus.htm#Home made programming systems , not sure what really exists commercially at this point in time and if you go hunting around you can probably find some GB/GBC save dumping setups made using an arduino if you prefer to go that route. I don't know if there is any kind of multiboot for the GB/GBC you could do like you can to dump GBA games.

    Yeah the DStwo would be way overkill for just dumping games, it is a lovely cart but way surplus to requirements. I would get a reasonable DS flash cart though because if you are going into all this then you will probably want to play DS games eventually, if it was an extra $40-80 like it might have been for some things in the GBA era then yeah it is a decision but this is an extra $10 at most and if you are dumping your own games it is probably a vanity project anyway (you might have some saves you really want but probably not and thus you can just download them, nobody cares or gets arrested for it and doubly so if you do it properly) so just spring for it. I don't know what we are suggesting these days but the R4i gold was when I last looked and will do this happily and play basically all the games. Real time menus means basically nothing, or more likely that it has menus that you can open in game to select cheats (the DStwo also has that feature if you cared). The only thing that stops me suggesting "basically anything" is that some stopped updating before the end of the DS commercial library so not everything will play every game, and this does include big companies like EZFlash (their EZ5i stopped being updated and now things like pokemon typing and pokemon conquest are harder to play, not sure about black and white 2) and M3. Even of those weaker ones then most will play most things in it (there are not too many that were dropped in 2009 or something and not brought back in one form or another) though so it is not like you are going to go short of games.
    I am not sure what shops we are suggesting right now either.