Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

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Zerocloud411

Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Zerocloud411 » 04 Sep 2014 19:45

Hey, I'm fairly new to the emulation scene but I've learned a good amount about it these past few weeks. I was reading up on the NES version of Metroid when I read that the FDS version was in fact better in a lot of ways like sound, ability to save, enemy AI, etc... than the NES version, I decided to download the FDS version. However, I saw that it was labelled as for bad dump and checking Dat-O-Matic's pdf on FDS roms it seems that Metroid has two ripped versions, both bad dumps. 1.1 has "save cleaned" and 1.2 has "header not valid".

After all of my googling I havent' been able to really understand what those two things mean and what they really affect. Since the FDS uses a floppy disk I assume "save cleaned" means the rip was from a floppy disk that was used and had a save on it that was removed to be "like new" but not actually. As for "header not valid" I actually read on the No-Intro FAQ and other sites that games shouldn't have headers since those were added for immediate emulation and hinder proper preservation. If somebody can explain those two things to me I would be really grateful.

Anyway, I was thinking about purchasing a brand new/un-sealed Metroid FDS disk from somewhere online, probably e-bay and handing it over to somebody in this community who knows how to rip properly. I'm not saying I will do it but I'm thinking about it. However, before doing so, I'd like some explanations on how this stuff works. First of all, if I give this over to somebody who knows how to do it, will that rip be guaranteed to be 100% if the disk is unused/not damaged? Second, how do I figure out what revision number the game is before purchasing? Third, concerning FDS, does using the floppy at all before ripping essentially make it a bad dump since the FDS writes to the floppy? And I see that in the PDF there is mention of "Golden Disk" and "un-sealed". Does golden disk literally mean it comes on a gold floppy like Metroid does or does that mean something else? Don't see why the color of the disk matters.

Anyway, any responses are really appreciated.

P.S.: Kind've unrelated, but I can't seem to be able to soft patch FDS games with Nestopia. Is this because the game is being read from a .ups file?

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C. V. Reynolds
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by C. V. Reynolds » 05 Sep 2014 07:50

I'm not an expert on the matter, but I can answer some questions to the best of my ability.
Since the FDS uses a floppy disk I assume "save cleaned" means the rip was from a floppy disk that was used and had a save on it that was removed to be "like new" but not actually.
Yes.
As for "header not valid" I actually read on the No-Intro FAQ and other sites that games shouldn't have headers since those were added for immediate emulation and hinder proper preservation.
This is a different sort of header, I think. The headers No-Intro doesn't want are the 16-byte headers that were once necessary to run the games on emulators (but are no longer necessary on emulators such as Nestopia Undead). A "header not valid" report suggests the FDS ROM image's internal header is what is damaged, and that's an essential part of the data.
First of all, if I give this over to somebody who knows how to do it, will that rip be guaranteed to be 100% if the disk is unused/not damaged?
Yes.
Third, concerning FDS, does using the floppy at all before ripping essentially make it a bad dump since the FDS writes to the floppy?
Floppies (such as what FDS games are stored on, though I'm unsure if FDS floppies had the feature) have a write-protect tab in the corner, as you may know. You can set it to write-protect mode and prevent the data from being overwritten. I assume any game that allows its data to be overwritten (and isn't write-protected via the tab) would be altered the moment the FDS loads it, but I'm unsure.
Don't see why the color of the disk matters.
It's technically possible, though very unlikely, that the golden version contains a different ROM. I can't think of a reason why it would in Metroid's case. A golden cart would appeal more to collectors and demand a higher price, though.
P.S.: Kind've unrelated, but I can't seem to be able to soft patch FDS games with Nestopia. Is this because the game is being read from a .ups file?
Unfortunately, this is a limitation of all versions of Nestopia I know of. FDS games only soft-patch through ups, and any attempt to soft-patch a game that writes its own ups will result in your ups being overwritten. Hard patch is the way to go unless this is changed in the future.


I'd like to know how to tell version number without peeking into the ROM dump as well. I haven't found any info on how to do so. :(

Zerocloud411

Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Zerocloud411 » 06 Sep 2014 04:45

Thank you very much for your response! It was very helpful.

If I decide to purchase a FDS who in this community do you know that would be willing to rip it if I send it to him/her? Also how can I be sure what version the disk is prior to purchasing it from somebody (ebay sellers don't seem to have that info listed in the details section). Also I actually have read that FDS disks are flawed because they create bad sectors over time even when not being used. Do you know what the chance of an unsealed disk having bad sectors is considering how old the disks are by now?

As for Nestopia. Since ips patches can be combined, would it be possible for me to combine a ups and an ips and then just have the save data continue to write over the combined file?

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C. V. Reynolds
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by C. V. Reynolds » 07 Sep 2014 08:47

You're welcome. And I forgot to say before: Welcome to the forum!
Zerocloud411 wrote:If I decide to purchase a FDS who in this community do you know that would be willing to rip it if I send it to him/her?
I personally don't know, but perhaps an administrator such as BigFred or Xuom2 could point you in the right direction. :)
Also I actually have read that FDS disks are flawed because they create bad sectors over time even when not being used. Do you know what the chance of an unsealed disk having bad sectors is considering how old the disks are by now?
Unfortunately, this is a reality of any game storage medium, called bit rot. It's usually uncommon if the games are well cared for. It is worse, however, with Famicom Disk System (and other floppy-based systems) simply because they're on floppy disks and floppies are more susceptible to data loss than other storage media. I don't know the odds of one buying a game with bit rot, but if the game has been kept in a good environment and has been sheltered from the elements, its odds of being undamaged are improved. Though, it's true the age of the disk is going to play a part in the risk no matter what you do.
As for Nestopia. Since ips patches can be combined, would it be possible for me to combine a ups and an ips and then just have the save data continue to write over the combined file?
I tried it once (assuming I did it right). The emulator will still completely overwrite the ups file with a new file any time it needs to write new data. :sdrop: Perhaps someone can suggest a change to the Nestopia Undead author.

Zerocloud411

Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Zerocloud411 » 17 Sep 2014 23:55

Alright thanks again for all of your help!

Unrelated but I'd rather not start another thread for it: Do you know how I can rip a rom from a compilation? ie: Extract the 2003 ROM version of The Legend of Zelda (NES) from The Legend of Zelda: Collector's Edition (GCN) and play it on a NES emulator?

Bent
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Bent » 18 Sep 2014 13:57

Zerocloud411, check out this old (old!) thread:

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=272

Ignore the argument I had going on, in there I put some general step by steps on how to extract roms from a few GC games. You should be able to go from there.

EDIT: I also forgot about some more work that was done to get some of the other roms from those games. I have a lot more directions, PM me if you would like them. Maybe some day I will write up a guide.

Zerocloud411

Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Zerocloud411 » 19 Sep 2014 17:19

Thanks a lot for the reply. I read the entire thread (pretty funny back and forth going on there lol) and I managed to successfuly pull the nes roms from Animal Crossing. However when I try the same thing on "The Legend of Zelda: Collector's Edition", I don't get any famicom.arc, all I see that has the .arc extension are "archive_00.arc" and "ZeldaPakSeqs.arc", neither of which seem to contain the nes games. What do you suggest I do?

Bent
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Bent » 20 Sep 2014 21:13

Those games were part of the PM's I was talking about. I am trying to write a guide for taking care of those but I don't have it finished yet. Those games have the roms embedded in the main .dols. Basically, you extract the .tgc files, convert them to .gcm, extract the main .dols from those .gcm's. Then you need to open up those .dols in a hex editor and search for the string "NES" without the quotes to find the iNES header. Then extract the next X bytes, depending on the size of the rom. If you can't follow me with this very rough description, wait a week or so and I hope to have my guide finished.
Last edited by Bent on 21 Sep 2014 00:39, edited 1 time in total.

Zerocloud411

Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Zerocloud411 » 21 Sep 2014 00:08

Yea that's definitely over my head since I don't know what half of that means. I look forward to your guide :D!

Overload
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Overload » 16 Feb 2015 09:27

users.tpg.com.au/advlink/temp/fmc-met_(rev_1)_(1986-08-11).zip

This isn't a new copy of metroid but it is guaranteed good, dumped it myself.

The disk I dumped it from is original but it does have save data.

Buddybenj
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Buddybenj » 18 Feb 2015 00:47

Overload wrote:users.tpg.com.au/advlink/temp/fmc-met_(rev_1)_(1986-08-11).zip

This isn't a new copy of metroid but it is guaranteed good, dumped it myself.

The disk I dumped it from is original but it does have save data.
The point is that this person wants to buy and dump a new copy because when the game is started for the first time some data is written to the disk, which is why the No-Intro entry for this game says .

Buddybenj
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Buddybenj » 11 Mar 2015 23:41

I'm willing to split this with you ($28.60 per person). I found a person who can dump FDS games for me. Let me know if this works for you.

drummerdave4689
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by drummerdave4689 » 21 Jul 2016 09:50

Hey guys, did anything ever come of this? If not, I'm totally down to help in any way possible.

Buddybenj
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by Buddybenj » 22 Jul 2016 04:07

drummerdave4689 wrote:Hey guys, did anything ever come of this? If not, I'm totally down to help in any way possible.
A generous user here named HardcoreHubz bought a sealed copy and dumped it. It's on this page, just do a ctrl-f for it (it should be a sealed copy): http://www.gamingalexandria.com/FDS%20Dumps/

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C. V. Reynolds
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Re: Purchasing Metroid (J).fds

Post by C. V. Reynolds » 24 Jul 2016 04:35

What Buddybenj said indeed. HardcoreHubz bought and dumped a LOT of games and I admire that. I have a lot of respect for video game preservationists.

On Metroid specifically, HardcoreHubz obtained a sealed copy of Metroid 1.2 version and dumped it.

I must note: 1.1 and 1.3 have been confirmed to exist (though No-Intro has no copy of 1.3, it does have a used 1.1 in the database). It is speculated there exists a 1.0 version, but no one has ever proven 1.0's existence.

Perhaps I should see about constructing a list of what FDS games are still needed and whether we'd need a sealed disk dump or not (some games never save and some games are impossible to find sealed because they were disk writer games).

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