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Emulator(s) with working debugger? - WayneK - 03-08-2013


So recently I found my interest in NGPCdev returning (I coded one of the first 'things' on NGPC back in the day, a trainermenu (cheat selection menu) for Pacman and Cotton) - I managed to find all the docs etc. that I need to get started, but now that I'm older and lazier than I was when the NGPC first came along I have a question:

Is there an emulator with a working debugger?

MESS emulator seems to have the best (the excellent MAME integrated debugger) in terms of features, but it appears the NGPC driver doesn't support saving the bios settings - this means you have to set the language/date/time etc. every single time you reset Sad

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to fix/avoid this problem with MESS? Or offer any alternative emulators which might suit my purposes?


RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - Flavor - 03-08-2013

Mr. Kerr, am I right? Or do you prefer just Wayne now that you're older and lazier? Smile

We can try to get the MESS NGPC driver author in here. I'll message him. He's chimed in on some stuff from time to time.

There is a version of NeoPop that has some good debugging features. I'm not sure what all you want, but it has breakpoints and such.

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - Morden - 03-08-2013

Wayne Kerr! All those GBC cracktros just flashed before my eyes. Are you planning on doing something specific, like a demo, or did you just want to mess around with the NGPC, and see where to go from there?

Whatever it is you're planning, I'm always glad to see people working on new stuff for the NGPC, or any other "obscure" platform for that matter. Keep us informed!

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - WayneK - 03-09-2013

Well, as usual I have plans for various things - anyone who knows me, will know not to expect any of them to be completed Smile
Really the first thing was to get back into the swing of things with some simple demo/effect code. I am aware that NeoPop has a debugger of sorts, but it's really only break on execute that works (which is better than nothing). The MESS/MAME debugger really has everything a developer could want, if only it wasn't rendered basically useless by having to spend 1 minute every reset setting the parameters because it won't save the bios settings Sad
Perhaps the guy who was coding a new emulator & spent a lot of time disassembling the NGPC bios could offer some hints on getting the bios settings to save correctly?

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - jdg - 03-09-2013

The ngp/ngpc drivers are indeed anooying in that aspect. But that is actually caused by the neogeo pocket being such an odd beast. When you turn off the unit, it actually isn't really turned off. The main cpu is still doing stuff on a low frequency and keeping internal ram up to date.

The driver basically represents a neogeo pocket unit powered for the first time; I haven't found a really clean way to handle this a bit more gracefully yet. I find it annoying too Wink

Heh, that was easier to fix than I thought. Enjoy!

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - Flavor - 03-13-2013

(03-09-2013, 04:59 AM)jdg Wrote: Heh, that was easier to fix than I thought. Enjoy!

Does that mean that MESS now saves the info?

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - jdg - 03-13-2013

Yes, on exit it saves the mainram of the tlcs900. If it managed to load the mainram when the driver starts then it will start execution from FF1800. It's a bit of a hack but it works and it makes the emulation a lot more user friendly.

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - Flavor - 03-13-2013

Nice. Out of curiosity, is that using the NGPC BIOS or the emulated system calls?

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - jdg - 03-13-2013

The bios. Everything in mess uses bioses when available.

RE: Emulator(s) with working debugger? - WayneK - 12-05-2013

I downloaded the latest version of MESS (0.151b) yesterday, and no matter what I changed in terms of settings/savestates etc. I couldn't get it to behave any differently from previous versions Sad
It still always asks you to set the various bios options (language/b+w mode/date+time) every single reset, which makes it incredibly frustrating to use for development.

Did the changes make it to a "release" version, or is there some configuration/setting somewhere that I have just overlooked?