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Old 07-12-2006, 05:40 PM   #1
Jathys
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Default SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

Sorry about the delays with SMILE version 1.0 . . . It's almost done now (finally). I'm in the process of adding IPS support (SMILE can currently create a patch, but I need to add patching tonight).

Anyway, a couple thoughts and questions:
-I could easily get SMILE to ignore the header when creating/patching IPS's... that way, all patches made with SMILE will work when patched with SMILE (ie- headered, non-headered... it doesn't really matter)
-if I do that though, all patches that are made with any other program would have to be made with a non-headered ROM... unless anyone has any thoughts on how to get a correct "guess" on individual patches?
-SMILE will allow a "folder patch", which will allow the user to apply *all* patches located in a folder to the same rom, at the push of a button.... this is due to Alliance being 20 small patches currently... does anyone else work this way? if so, should I make a mini-patcher program seperate from SMILE to allow this same function to be done on other roms???
-it will NOT be an undo feature, but I am contemplating how to use IPS patches as a way of tracking changes made to the rom, in order to reverse the changes if they are undesirable (this is kind of like "undo" but only at saved points).
-file comparing will be infinitely faster (ie- actually usable without leaving your computer for 5 minutes)
-should SMILE allow people to "deselect" portions of the IPS when patching (ie- patch only changes made to a certain area of the rom)

*Note* I am eating pizza.
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Old 07-13-2006, 12:08 AM   #2
Acheron86
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Default Re: SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

> Sorry about the delays with SMILE version 1.0 . . . It's
> almost done now (finally).

Good to hear it. Take your time--it's done when it's done, and everyone knows a finished product late is better than an unfinished one on time.

> all patches that are made with any other program would have
> to be made with a non-headered ROM

The feature doesn't seem all that important--I'm about clueless to ROM structure and my hex knowledge is shabby at best but it only took a question or two for me to figure out how to "unheader" a rom myself. And anyone who makes a hack can include those instructions in the readme if they're worried. Seems easier that way, to me at least, but again I'm no expert.

> -it will NOT be an undo feature, but I am contemplating how
> to use IPS patches as a way of tracking changes made to the
> rom, in order to reverse the changes if they are undesirable
> (this is kind of like "undo" but only at saved points).

Unfortunately, about a year or so ago I had to scrap a SMILE project I was about halfway done with (completely revamped Crateria, Brinstar, and Norfair) because somewhere along the way a very important room got corrupted. I had been making backups regularly but the bug itself had eluded my detection because I wasn't testing the entire hack every time I made a backup--ended up the best "working" version would throw me back to Crateria and half of Brinstar, and I didn't have the heart. That was actually a good thing, because it wasn't that good and a lot of it hurt to look at, and knowing what I know now about ROMs I probably could have salvaged more than I did, but I would hate if that happened to my current project--anything like an "undo" function, in any sense, could never hurt.

I wouldn't make it a huge priority, of course. I'm one noob hacker in a sea of... uh... hackers?

> *Note* I am eating pizza.

And you didn't bring enough for the rest of us? For shame...
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Old 07-13-2006, 05:05 AM   #3
Jathys
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Default as for the non-undo undo

SMILE's file compare feature is good (but damn slow) for finding where data has been changed in the rom. I'll be speeding this up immensely at some point, due to the IPS capability . . . Using this and bank buddy (an unreleased program of mine), I've recovered several roms of my own, by repairing a *bank*, but not the entire rom.

That said, SMILE's patcher *may* allow the capability of patching only pieces of an IPS . . . So you could start with a fresh rom and apply *most but not all* of an IPS, to get rid of the bad section and have less to redo.

Of course, that is without any undo needed.

I think all I'm going to do as far as the IPS back ups are concerned.... Imagine having SMILE create an IPS patch each time you save, placing the IPS in a specific "back up" folder, named based on the date and time. Only 2 set backs to this:
1) With large hacks, the folder could get rather large over time if the IPS is being based off a clean rom.
2) I could have successive patches be based on comparing your current rom with a rom that has been patched by all the existing back up patches (faster than it sounds), to keep the file size very very small overall . . . But then . . . What was the negative on this again? Oh well, I'll add number 3 then.
3) If you are working on multiple hacks or decided to start over with a fresh rom, you'd have to be smart enough to either empty this folder or to patch the rom before saving changes.

Anyway, I'm just thinking out loud.
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Old 07-13-2006, 05:28 AM   #4
MegaManJuno
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Default Re: SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

Considered an alternative format aside from IPS? D's NINJA 2.0 format looks decent from what I've seen of it over on ROMHacking.net.

I believe all patches for it ignore headers (except for certain systems where they're really needed), so the headers wouldn't be a problem any longer.
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Old 07-13-2006, 07:20 AM   #5
Jathys
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Default Re: SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

> Considered an alternative format aside from IPS?

Nope. For SNES games, IPS does everything I need and is pretty much universal. The only alternate formats I would consider at all would be data *moving* patches, instead of data changing.
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Old 07-15-2006, 10:53 PM   #6
Murray
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Default Re: SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

> Unfortunately, about a year or so ago I had to scrap a SMILE
> project I was about halfway done with (completely revamped
> Crateria, Brinstar, and Norfair) because somewhere along the
> way a very important room got corrupted.
>
How exactly did the room get corrupted?
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Old 07-16-2006, 05:49 AM   #7
Jathys
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Default Re: SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

> How exactly did the room get corrupted?

Knowing SMILE, any number of ways . . . Most 2 common ways:
1) An enemy got changed into one that needs special properties which never got set . . . Crash actually takes place when the enemy is active, so an off-screen test can be helpful. Replace the enemy properties.
2) PLM screw ups . . . People make these, but so does SMILE. Very rarely a bad/non-existing PLM will turn up in the list. When this happens, replace the PLM.
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Old 07-16-2006, 04:45 PM   #8
Acheron86
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Default Re: SMILE, IPS'ing, and pizza

> How exactly did the room get corrupted?

I really don't know, because the room worked long after I had modified it. It was the "ship landing" room, the first room, and I never touched it after I was finished with it. Somewhere between changing rooms in Brinstar and Norfair it was suddenly filled with the little yellow door tops, and all the room's info was gone. I'm not sure how it got affected but I don't really worry about it too much--in all honesty, it wasn't a very good hack. :P
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Old 07-16-2006, 07:09 PM   #9
Jathys
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Default a comment on "yellow door tops"

Yellow door tops are quite often seen when there is a problem with a level . . . Why? Because that particular tile is essentially the value *zero*. If something screws up the level data (for example, SMILE's reading from the wrong spot and can't find pieces of it), the empty spaces in the bad data are all zeros and appear to be yellow door tops.

Just mentioning this because lots of people ask on those.
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Old 07-16-2006, 09:21 PM   #10
Murray
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Default Re: a comment on "yellow door tops"

> Yellow door tops are quite often seen when there is a
> problem with a level . . . Why? Because that particular
> tile is essentially the value *zero*.
>
Seen this happen once, myself. Room still appeared fine in game. though.
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