RetroPies for Christmas!
For Christmas this year I ended up building a bunch of RetroPi’s with Raspberry Pi 2 “kits” (they come with a case, RPi2 and power supply)
I also ended up getting a controller, for my dad I got a Buffalo SNES USB controller. For everyone else, especially if your planning to play anything more modern, I’d want something wireless and with analog sticks like the Logitech F710
On all three of the RPi’s I did for others I used SanDisk Ultra 32GB microSD cards. These were the cheapest among the brands I like and I’ve found SanDisk not to go corrupt on me.
With one of the Pi’s, a friend of mine wanted to use an X360 controller. That ended up being a boondoggle because, after installing the X360 driver from the menu, it tries to use two controller spaces. I’ve yet to resolve that issue, save for plugging it in last so it takes up the ports of the next two spaces after all other controllers are plugged in.
All that being said, everyone that got one absolutely loved it.
Resolving some problems
I also ran into a two problems, first with inputs not autoconfiguring in Retroarch. Worse than that, the cofigure controller for retroarch was missing from the retropie setup menu. I resolved the input issue by reflashing the image from Petrockblog (3.2.1). For some reason updating RetroPi from the binary was breaking autoconfig.
The second was with Player 2 input not working on the image I got from PetrockBlog (Retropi 3.2.1). However, I was able to resolve that by SSH’ing into the RPi and running the following commands (found here):
git clone https://github.com/libretro/stella-libretro.git (this downloads the code to your pi; do it in your home directory) cd stella-libretro (this navigates into the source code you just downloaded) make (this compiles the code) cd /opt/retropie/libretrocores/lr-stella (this navigates to the directory on your pi that houses the stella emulation library) sudo cp stella_libretro.so stella_libretro.so.bak (this makes a backup of your old stella library just in case) sudo rm stella_libretro.so (this deletes your old stella library to make room for the new one; the backup is still there) sudo cp /home/pi/stella-libretro/stella_libretro.so stella_libretro.so (this copies your newly-built stella library from the source code directory to the directory where your stella emulation library lives)If something goes wrong, you can revert to your old stella library backup by doing: cd /opt/retropie/libretrocores/lr-stella (navigates you to the directory where your stella emulation library lives) sudo rm stella_libretro.so (this deletes your newly-built stella library to make room for your old backup to be restored) sudo mv stella_libretro.so.bak stella_libretro.so (this renames your backup to make it work with RetroArch again)
A few tips I learned:
- Creating a ghost of the installation with everything I wanted on the SD Card was great for creating more RetroPies. I had to do all my setup on the first one and then cloned the card afterwards using Win32DiskImg.
- Edit the input configuration so that hitting both analog sticks (or another combination if your controller lacks those buttons) to open the RetroArch menu. The config file is located at \\RETROPIE\all\configs\RetroArch.cfg and you can uncomment the section regarding a menu combo and use the corresponding number for each combo (search the file for combo).
- Setting up SAMBA shares worked great for giving non-tech-savvy people the ability to add their own content.
- Installing the smartphone controller experimental package was a nice addition for people who don’t want to have extra controllers lying around all the time but occasionally wanted to play with more people.
- Most of the USB Wi-Fi adapters I tried had awful speeds, I ended up relying on Ethernet 90% of the time during my setups.
- Having a wireless keyboard (Logitech K400) was awesome (I now use it for my xbox one and HTPC)