It is now February 1st, 2019. 13 months ago I decided that I would start the new year 2018 by doing something I had never done before: by trying out Amstrad CPC 8-bit microcomputer emulation on Linux. Back then I used MAME, and today I will show you how to get Apple IIe emulation up and running on Fedora Linux 29. Like with Amstrad CPC emulation, we will use MAME as our emulator.
Why did I choose MAME? Because a few months ago, I tried to find special-purpose Apple II emulators for Linux, and that search was a pretty annoying experience. Maybe I did not have enough patience, or maybe I used wrong key words in my search, but whatever the reason, now I think that using MAME is a good way to do this.
For sure I remember that getting system ROMs was a painful failure and unfortunately with MAME, the situation was not that much different - finding the working Apple II character and system ROM files can be extremely frustrating indeed.
This is a step-by-step tutorial on how you can run Apple IIe emulation to play retrogames on Fedora Linux 29. With little creativity, the advice here is applicable on any Linux such as Ubuntu or Debian GNU/Linux.
Let's start by installing MAME emulator first. Open a terminal window and type:
After that, you can query the RPM database with command:
You should see something like the following:
Press Q to quit
less pager program and return to the
bash shell prompt.
Fedora Linux 29 has
autosave enabled by default in the global configuration file
/etc/mame/mame.ini. I do not like that default, so I remove it with:
Almost everybody who works with computers knows that Steve "Woz" Wozniak was an important pioneer in the home computer industry. With business-oriented Steve Jobs, he founded Apple company and the rest is history. Many early, big and influential computer companies such as Atari and Commodore are gone now, but Apple still persists.
I am a little bit afraid of being persecuted by Apple, but thinking realistically, the Apple IIe ROM files, even though copyrighted, have ceased to create profits for Apple. The first Apple II computer was released way back in 1977 and the last came out in 1993. So we are talking about obsolete software that really, in my opinion, should have its copyright expired.
To make life easier for Apple II and retrocomputing fans out there, you can download apple2e.zip here. Without the files in that ZIP archive, MAME cannot run Apple IIe emulation, so it is necessary to install them.
If you are interested, you can ask MAME to tell you which ROM files it expects to find for
Now install the ROM files for MAME:
After that you can ask MAME to verify that the ROMs are okay:
I am a legal owner of three Apple II games, meaning that I have bought authentic, physical copies from eBay. The games are available for download here:
Before starting MAME, I have my Logitech Rumblepad 2 USB controller plugged in.
To run Boulder Dash you do:
Then press key A on the keyboard to select "Apple joystick":
After that I press the FIRST BUTTON of my Logitech Rumblepad 2 USB controller, and that starts the game:
To run Picnia Paranoia do:
This floppy disk image contains three games, and we are interested in the game C i.e. Picnic Paranoia:
Press R on the keyboard followed by C and you will see this:
The game cracking group has inserted its message before the game. Press ENTER to advance to the game:
You will see
PRESS RETURN TO START. "RETURN" means ENTER:
This is Picnic Paranoia:
To run Miner 2049er do:
Then press ENTER:
I press A for "Apple joystick":
Keep your joystick/controller pad centered (i.e. in neutral position) and press the controller's FIRST BUTTON:
Hold controller in the left position, and press the FIRST BUTTON. Repeat for right, up and down.
Press number 1 on keyboard:
This is Miner 2049er:
For some reason, Miner 2049er game seems to last forever. In other words, the "lives" do not decrease at all. I do not know why.
You now know how to install MAME and Apple IIe related ROM files. You also know how to start three classic retrogames on Apple IIe emulation using MAME.
I find it pretty sad that Steve Jobs never really gave credit to the hackers who created Apple II. It was a good 8-bit machine, and it made lots of money for Apple. I am sure many Apple II owners remember it with great joy, and possibly want to relive their old memories using emulation. This tutorial is meant as help to those people, and also to those who are just getting to know Apple II.
I certainly hope that Apple will not persecute me for making the Apple II system ROMs available. The site kolttonen.fi is a strictly non-profit site with no ads or commercial interests.
Have fun!Kalevi Kolttonen <firstname.lastname@example.org>