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Download and organize Amstrad CPC ROMs

05/02/2020
This article tells you where to find software on Amstrad CPC, shows how to organize them by genre, in an unique format, and propose to download an archive of ROMs.

A wide choice of emulators

Logo Amstrad CPCThe emulators on Amstrad CPC are numerous and allow to emulate the CPC 464, 664, 6128 et 6128+ almost perfectly and on several operating systems, such as for example on systems:

  • Windows : Caprice Forever, CPCEPower, WinAPE, JavaCPC, Sugarbox, CPC++, CPCE, CPCEmu, WinCPC, CopaCabana, Caprice32, Arnold...
  • Android : AndCPC, Droid-CPC
  • Linux : CPCemu, Arnold, DSP
  • Nintendo DS : AmeDS, CrocoDS
  • Wii : Wiituka
  • Sony PSP : PSPCap32
  • Palm OS : Caprice pour Palm OS
  • Amiga : CPCEmu, Ami-CPC, A-CPC, CPE
  • Directly in a browser : CPCBox

This success no longer needs to be proven. However, to use these emulators, you need to have files. CPCemu author, Marco Vieth, initiated the DSK format in order to store the image of a 3 inch floppy disk. This format has since been recognized by most emulators.

Get software on Amstrad CPC

There are over 7.000 software (games and utilities) on Amstrad CPC. You can find ROMs all over the internet (the number of fan sites is just amazing!) :

  • Planet Emulation offers single game downloads
  • Game Tronik allows you to download a game individually but also its different variants
  • Emuparadise displays more than 11,000 software for download, also individually
  • CPCRulez lists the games according to their medium, offers screenshots of the boxes, the instructions and tips
  • GoodCPC is an archive of approximately 670MB containing over 27,000 DSK files, representing 7,300 unique software, all compressed in 7z format. However, the software is not organized or presented.
  • CPCGamesCD is an ISO archive created by Miguel Sky and gathering in a single file more than 4000 games and utilities, with description, screenshot, emulators and utilities. Incredible!

    Interface de CPCGamesCD

Organize your ROMS

I have a preference for the CPCGamesCD archive, in view of the organization carried out, but the files in the archive are not all of the same format, however. There are :

  • DSK files
  • GZ files
  • binary files in "Amstrad format"

I wrote a script which allows to convert all these files in the same format, namely the DSK format:

  • By unzipping all the GZs
  • By reintegrating the files in the DSK format

The DSK format is not compressed and occupies between 190 KB and 200 KB (the format of a floppy disk), all these files are then compressed in 7Z format with maximum compression.

The idea is to have all the ROMS of a genre in the same directory (adventure game, arcade ...), compressed in 7Z format and containing all the necessary DSK files (plus the file_id.diz if it is present)

Unzip all GZ files

The following batch script goes through all the GZ files in a directory and its subdirectories and deletes the original GZ file. To use it, change the directory specified in SourceDir, specify where 7Z is located, and save everything in a .BAT file.

REM Unzip all the GZ files in a folder and subfolders
SET SourceDir="d:\RomsCPC"
FOR /R %SourceDir% %%A IN ("*.gz") DO (
    "E:\Utilities\7-Zip\7z.exe" x "%%~A" -o"%%~pA"
    del "%%~A" )

Insert all files in a DSK

The script generedsk.7z(79 Ko) can convert all subfolders to a DSK file.

It takes several minutes to process but, once that is done, you get a tree view with only DSK files and file_id.diz files left.

Compress each folder

The final step is to compress the DSKs (occupying more than 900 MB) into 7z archives compressed to a maximum level (level 9).

Once this is done, the set of files will weigh only 168MB, a gain of 81%.

Download 4600 ROMs

Here is an archive containing the ROMS integrated by the previous method: amstrad_-_cpc.zip(196 Mo)

Dernière modification le 15/05/2021 - Quillevere.net

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