Release Notes for CD-i Emulator, version 0.5.2
This is the first public release of the CD-i Emulator. There are still
many issues, but this version is good enough for a first release.
This version of the emulator supports all the Philips players that
I've been able to get my hands on so far, with the following notes
- Maxi-MMC players (180) aren't supported because I haven't got any
useful info about them.
- Mini-MMC players should work, if they are recognized as such. This
includes the 205/910, 350 and 605 players.
- Mono-I players (210/00 and 220/20) work once they are recognized,
but at present only the 220/20 is.
- On Mono-II players (210/20 and 220/40), CDDA tracks don't work yet.
Titles that try to use them (such as The Apprentice) will be silent
and/or hang after some time.
- On Mono-II players, the player shell does not recognize disc insertions.
If the disc is already there when the player boots, it works fine.
- Roboco players (450 and 550) don't recognize discs from the player
shell. However, you can use the -playcdi option or the equivalent GUI
setting to play discs (see below).
- The 370 is actually not a Philips player and it doesn't work yet. This
one needs to wait for 68341 and cdap/rchip support.
- The 615 player will recognize discs from the player shell, but when
you try to play them the emulation will hang. You can use the -playcdi
option or the equivalent GUI setting to play discs (see below).
- Joystick support is available but somewhat experimental and probably
needs more tuning; you can use the -joyxxx options to change the
joystick poll frequency, swing, dead zone and step count. The defaults
are chosen to sort-of match the original "joystick" remote. The program
only recognizes joysticks on startup, no hot-plugging yet!
- If the CD-i application attempts to reposition the cursor, players up
to and including Mono-III will actually reposition your Windows cursor,
as long as it is over the emulator window. You can regain your cursor
by using the Alt key.
- There is basic support for the front panel display of the 205/910,
210, 220, 470, 490 and 740 players. This needs more work.
Interesting tidbit: although the CD-i 660 doesn't actually have a front
panel display, the ROMs still send the appropriate commands. You can
see this by using the option: -set ikat.leds=cdi4xx.lds.
- On most players, you can use the option -playcdi or its GUI equivalent
"Play CD-i disc (skip CD-i player shell)" under the Options | Settings
menu choice to immediately start the CD-i application, skipping the
This feature works by loading a small OS9 module that overrides the
standard player shell; the -playcdi option is just a shorthand for
"-set extra=playcdi" that will tell the system builder to read the file
"sys/playcdi.use" that specifies to load the "mod/playcdi.mod" module.
You can use the same technique to load your own memory modules too;
check out the playcdi.use and playcdi.mod files in the sys and mod
directories. The assembly source to playcdi.mod is included also.
- You can load the symbol table (stb) files produced by the Microware
OS9 linker l68; great for debugging your CD-i software! A sample file
playcdi.stb is included; load it with the debugger command "a playcdi".
You'd better have used -playcdi too, or you'll get a "bad crc" message
because the symbols won't refer to the correct "play" module!.
- It appears that the -ntsc option doesn't work on some of the newer
players; I haven't figured this out yet.
- This version does not support the NVRAM saving feature of some previous
beta versions. A better NVRAM saving feature will be added in the next
version, but only for the unlimited edition.
- CD-i Emulator registers itself with Windows, which allows the "wcdiemu"
command to be used from the Start | Run box. This can be useful if you
need an option or setting not (yet) covered by the GUI.
- CD-i Emulator associates itself with a number of file extensions
commonly used for CD-i disc image files. The specific extensions
are configurable and there is an option to automatically check the
associations on each startup. This allows double-clicking of disc image
files and dragging of such files to the main emulator window. Note that
each double-click will open a new emulator instance!
- CD-i emulator supports "raw disc image" file formats with sector
sector sizes of 2448, 2352, 2340, 2336 and 2332 bytes, with or without
two-second pregap and/or scrambling. This should cover all the "raw
disc image" file formats out there. In particular, the Nero (NRG) file
format for track-at-once images is supported, as well as the IsoBuster
(BIN) and CloneCD (IMG) files.
- Disc image files can be opened from the GUI with the File | Open menu
choice, as well as using the -disc option from the command line.
- Previously opened disc image files are remembered. You can directly
select the 10 least-recently-used files from the File menu, but there is
also a File | Select menu choice that gives you access to the full list.
The list is saved in the cdiemu.ini file in your Windows directory.
- The File | Select menu choice is actually a fairly general disc image
catalog facility; it displays information about each disc image file and
even allows some of it to be edited, which is useful because the default
titles from the disc image file are not always meaningful. Sorting
and search functions are also included. You can also browse for disc
image files and/or drag disc image files to the window to add them to
- To complement File | Open and File | Select there is also a File | Eject
menu choice with a corresponding toolbar button. On a real CD-i player
the Open/Close button will normally also reset the player, in the
emulator you have to (at least for now) do it yourself with the
Emulate | Reset menu choice or 'R' toolbar button.
- The Options | Settings menu choice provides a GUI for the most
useful command line options, allowing them to be set persistently. The
persistent settings are saved to the cdiemu.ini file. Nearly all command
line options can be set from the file.
- If a recognized (by model) but unknown (by checksum) CD-i system ROM is
found, the user is asked to report his experiences to the website. This
is intended to get a better idea of the ROM versions actually out there;
I have come across some documentation that suggests that (at least for
the early players), there may be many (sometimes more then five!) ROM
versions for each player model.