Getting a decent version of mame is not trivial, and some hackery is involved. On my (very) old setup, I used arcadeOS and vsyncmame which were two great pieces of software. However, DOS is pretty much dead, and the last version of vsyncmame is from 2002/2003. Back then, I actually got xmame to work on a cab, with a GGI->framebuffer setup, and a slightly modified 3DFX Banshee kernel-driver - but the vsync capabilities of vsyncmame and the convenience of arcadeOS made me drop that project.



First off, Andrea Mazzoleni is undoubtedly a very talented person. AdvanceMame in itself, but also AdvanceCD (and the usb-boot utilities) must have taken an enormous amount of time to create. The main appeal of AdvanceMame (for me at least), is its ability to access the framebuffer directly without resorting to limiting API's.

It has it quirks though, and I have always though of AdvanceMame as a hot chick with bad teeth, and an incredible lisp. My main beef with AdvanceMame is:

    • How it handles monitor timings
    • Too many features I don't want
    • Said feature(bloat)richness makes it stupidly hard to configure

Further, as of October 2006, it seems development has halted.


SDLmame is a relatively new effort, and has the advantages of simple/clean code, and being in sync with mainline mame. Getting SDLMame to work with the framebuffer is (now) not hard, it works by default because of the SDL framebuffer driver. SDL is not superadvanced when it comes to setting modes, and has no support for custom resolutions or refreshrates. The workaround is to make sure /etc/fb.modes contain a "perfect" mode for the game you're trying to launch.