Monthly Archives: November 2009

Amiga in the USB stick

A couple of weeks ago I wanted to play Napalm with my Amiga, but there was a problem. My mouse didn’t work at all.

I decided to make a bootable USB stick with fullscreen UAE. Server installation of the Ubuntu Karmic was used as root filesystem. I have mini laptop and desktop machine. I wanted to use USB stick with both machines. E-UAE was used, because it is in the karmic repositories and E-UAE supports JIT.

First I tried setup UAE work with DirectFB. No X means more space to the games and applications. Almost everything worked fine with mini laptop. Problems: Amiga side has only one screenmode available. Another was screen refresh rate with desktop machines CRT-monitor. 60Hz makes me feel sick. The main problem was how to setup framebuffer so the same configuration could be used with several setups. This was not good solution.

Second option was to use X11. I used mingetty and bash profile to make system login automatic. GDM and KDM have too many dependencies and XDM does not suppot automatic login. There is no window manager at all. Everything worked great. I was able to select different screenmodes. No more 60Hz nighmare. Tried with USB version of the Competition pro, I recognised some delay when using it.

Where is an emulation used there is always problems. Problem with saving some screenmode with UAE on machine-1. Then try to use stick with machine-2, which does not support saved mode, Result is segmentation fault with the E-UAE. Workaround: Do not save any special screenmode. Amiga has option to use screenmode. Save something like 640×480 mode as default and then change it after every boot.

Napalm worked great. Even Superfrog was fully playable with atom n270 mini laptop. It is almost like using actual Amiga. I was satisfied with the result.

Instructions to create E-UAE USB stick: http://koti.kapsi.fi/~jvaltane/uae/