UPDATE: New Raspbian Binaries Available
Today I present the binaries for AdvanceMESS. The Multi Emulator Super System. MESS can emulate somewhere around 250 different home consoles and computers. It’s not perfect in any sense, but it works for most consoles.
I have currently tested:
- NES (some games are slow, but it works).
- GameGear (works)
- Genesis (slow but works)
- SNES (couldn’t get it to work…yet)
- Download MESS Binaries.
- Unzip MESS to the ~/MESS directory.
- chmod 777 /dev/fb0
- Put your console bios’s into mess/share/advance/rom/
- Put your console games into mess/share/advance/image/<console>/ (ie mess/share/advance/image/nes/
- CD into mess/bin/
- Run advmess with ./advmess
- The first time it’s run it will generate a set of folders and files into ~/.advance
- edit your ~/.advance/advmess.rc to include the proper display configuration
- For HDMI try:
- device_video_clock 5 – 50 / 15.62 / 50 ; 5 – 50 / 15.73 / 60
- For NTSC TVs try:
- device_video_clock 5 – 50 / 15.73 / 60
- For HDMI try:
- While still in the mess/bin directory, type ./advmess <console> -cart <filename>
- ./advmess nes -cart file.nes
This is one of the weirder setups I’ve tested, but once setup, it works. If you have any issues, let me know and I will try to help you.
P.S. I will NOT help you find console bios or roms. Please don’t ask.
so far, I just tried out the RetroArch emulator. Thank you for this post – I will also test the AdvanceMESS!
You might be interested in my post about connecting a SNES controller to the Raspberry at
I have tried to follow your guide above but getting a error on step 7
“pi@raspberrypi:~/mess/bin$ sudo ./advmess” gives me the error
sudo: ./advmess no: command not found
Any hint on what im doing wrong?
Don’t use sudo. It shouldn’t be needed. just do ./advmess
Let me know if that helps.
I have the same issue (running raspbmc in my case, which ultimately may not work but should get past this step…)
-bash: ./advmess: No such file or directory
advcfg advj advk advm advmess advs advv
You probably forgot to put execute permissions on the file. ls -lha will show you the permissions of each file.
chmod +x advmess will do the trick.
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Great new!!! I’m planning to put my raspberry pi into and old Nintendo 64.
It will be so cool to play N64 games with a raspberry pi into an original case of N64.
i wish too but alas slow processing.
it would be epic though if someone managed to get it to work though!
Do the BIOS’s get put into folders too? How does MESS know where to find them?
The BIOS’s get put into the ROM folder. The game roms go into the IMAGES folder under the system’s name. So NES roms go into the images/nes folder. MESS knows what to look for when you call the program.
./advmess system -cart filename
ie: ./advmess nes -cart filename.rom
I cant get any bios to work. I have put them in mess/share/advance/rom/ but when I try to start advmess it shows .rom NOT FOUNT, but I have .bin added.
What could be the problem and how can I solve it?
(I’ve also tried to change locations of rom/image folders in advmess.rc but it also didn’t help)
How do you edit the file in step 8 . New to Linux , Thanks for the help
also i type /.avdmess famicom -cart famicom.rom and id does not find the file. the bios is in the rom folder
please help !
I did correct the line to be ./advmess famicom -cart disksys.rom and still it says
Device cartridge load (disksys.rom) failed: File not found
Why are you basing your build on +3 years old source code (AdvanceXXX) ?
Currently i’m setting up cross build environement and i will try to provide very recent mame/mess builds.
If you have some info on cross build, i will be plaised to got them.
Following your previous directions I was able to get Advmame up and running but Advmess is giving me problems. When I try to run an nes image (say “./advmess nes -cart Super_mario_brothers3.nes”) I get the following:
AdvanceMESS – Copyright…etc
MESS – Copyright…etc
MAME – Copyright…etc
No video modes available for the current game.
Unable to start video emulation
If run startx and type the same command into the terminal I get the same first 3 copyright lines followed by a different error:
Signal SIGBUS[ADRALN], fault at 0x9a8323e6, from code at (nil)
Compiled Jun 21 2012, 19:26:16
No stack backtrace: compile without CFLAGS=-fomit-frame-pointer and with LDFLAGS=-rdynamic
Any ideas what could be amiss?
I have the same problems as you Dan W, run from Terminal ‘No Video Modes’ from within X and using a terminal same message about ‘No stack backtrace:’, is this due to the new build of Raspbian Wheezy. I was trying to run a Genesis Rom (Sonic Compilation)
Anyone smarter than me able to help? I hope so, was looking forward to some Sonic action!
Keep up the great work, was waiting for someone to make this possible. Now I really can get rid of my old Xbox (no need for XBMC for Xbox or the emulators with it) Farewell old box, you have served me VERY well for a very long time!
I’m on the same situation running on sdl on terminal. Using hdmi 1920×1080 tv display.
I am also having the same problem. Has anybody been able to resolve this?
Ignore my stupidity, just found the latest build. Run sonic, but verrrryyyy slooooow. Am I running with the wrong settings? Has anyone done any optimisation with this?
I am getting error: bash: ./advmess: Permission denied despite changing the permissions for my user. is there anything I can try to get this permission error to change? all folders/files(console bios / roms) are in the right locations stated above so this should be a simple fix! please help
So I guess it’s safe to say that not only does this not work, but it’s also not being supported or upgraded? That’s ok, I don’t expect anyone to work for free if they’re no longer interested in a project – I just want to know where we stand here.
It’s still workign and still being supported. This is an old post. I’m hoping to push a new deb package this week.
The sluggishness is obviously due to using the framebuffer. Have you attempted to use OpenGL (-video opengl)? I haven’t given it a try yet, and it may need some code editing, but I’d just like to see if it was even attempted
OpenGL is not available on the Pi, only OpenGL ES.
I’m new to linux and dont know a lot about it,
How do I unzip a file?
I was also wondering what step 3 means 3. chmod 777 /dev/fb0 ?
I tried it (I extracted a Famicom BIOS from a zip in an archive, it’s still called disksys.rom and there’s a copy in */rom and */rom/nes) and I got this (File Manager window to prove the file is actually there):
What am I doing wrong?
* = mess/share/advance
try advmess nes -cart nes/game
To get advmess working on Adafruit PiTFT 320×240 add this to your ~/.advance/advmess.rc:
can i do it without the terminal?
I do the command in step 3, and it says in the terminal:
“Changing permissions of `/dev/fb0′: operation not permitted”