"Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

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"Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 09:48

Motherboard: Notebook Compaq nx6310
Processor type and speed: Celeron M 1,46 Ghz
Amount and type of RAM: 1Gb
Video board w/ RAM amount and type : 8Mb
Sound board: default
Operating system: Win Xp
Game name (and version, if applicable) : Elite (1987)
Description of problem: The game is playable but, under every Dosbox version don't load and check the list of the saved game file.
However the game save and load if runned by prompt without dosbox.
Reproducibility of problem: Always if you run it under Dosbox.
Sound mode used: Default
Video mode: Default
Version of emulator: all dosbox version
Steps already attempted to solve the problem : nothing

To understand and reach the problem, run the game under dosbox, pres ESC anytime you want douring your orbital station permanence.
Now you are in the game control pannel where you can save, load, check the list of the save game, set the control and exit to DOS.
If you save the game, you can see the saved game file in the windows folder but the game don't list the file using the check command "C" and don't reload the saved game file using the "L" load command.
The same procedure, without dosbox, run but the playability is imposible by the clock normal overframing.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 10:44

You are not alone:

http://www.dosbox.com/comp_list.php?sho ... arch=Elite

Does it help if you press CTRL-F4 (which tells DOSBox to refresh the drive cache)?
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 11:44

eheheh... too much easy.
Ctrl F4 doesn't work for this issue.
So I think that is a "variable" problem. Infact if you save the game without dosbox running, but in the same status, if you go in the windows folder, open the saved file with notepad, save without changing anyting, and return to the game (without dosbox running), the file doesn't work.
Then, I think there is something that if the saved game file (.CDR extention) was modyfied by another program (DosBox also), doesn't work.
I think that when the game program hand to the dosbox the seved game file, dosbox change someting and the file lost its authenticity.
Really, I don't know how can I solve di problem. :depressed:
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby wd » 2008-9-26 @ 11:53

Can you post two files, one that works and one that doesn't?
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 12:04

Please try this:

1) Start DOSBox.
2) Start Elite.
3) Go to the game control panel.
4) Save the game position.
5) Exit game.
6) Exit DOSBox.

7) Start DOSBox.
8) Start Elite.
9) Go to the game control panel.
10) Do the saved game position show up?
11) Can you load the saved game position?
12) Does it work?
Last edited by MiniMax on 2008-9-26 @ 13:35, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 12:17

sure!
I post the url, becouse I don't want to zip o rename the extention.

Game file: Game
saved game file that work: WORK.CDR
saved game file that not work: NORK.CDR

Note: I think that the control pannel doesn't case sensitive, but I've try both case and work also.

I'm patient waiting for your response.
Thank you...

Please try this:

1) Start DOSBox.
2) Start Elite.
3) Go to the game control panel.
4) Save the game position.
5) Exit game.
6) Exit DOSBox.

7) Start DOSBox.
8) Start Elite.
9) Go to the game control panel.
10) Do the saved game position show up?
11) Can you load the saved game position?
12) Does it work?

Sorry Minimax but doesn't work. It doesn't also in the same dosbox session.

Maybe if Chrisintx don't remember how he fix the problem or somelse find the key, I'm really going crazy.... :blah:
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 13:38

Those URL's doesn't work for me. They lead me straight to the front-page: http://it.altervista.org/
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby wd » 2008-9-26 @ 14:10

Please download the WORK.CDR file you uploaded (be sure you put it into an
empty directory), then copy the game files into that directory (excluding all
savegame-related files), and see if it works.
If it doesn't it has to do with file attributes as noted on the dosbox compatibility page.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 14:10

@MiniMax : You have to right click mouse and save like object. :cool: if you open like a web page the host redirect you to the root host page. :money:


Please download the WORK.CDR file you uploaded (be sure you put it into an
empty directory), then copy the game files into that directory (excluding all
savegame-related files), and see if it works.
If it doesn't it has to do with file attributes as noted on the dosbox compatibility page.


I've do that yet. Both the game file and the saved game file was in a empty folder

Code: Select all
C:\elite\elite.exe
and
C:\elite\WORK.CDR


Have you the same issue? Did you try it? Waht happen?
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 14:18

Both files looks okay to me. Same size, same structure, no CR/LF conversions:

Code: Select all
$ vd WORK.CDR
     0: 43 6F 6D 6D 61 6E 64 65  72 20 66 69 6C 65 1A 0F | Commander file..
    10: 0D 43 4F 4D 4D 41 4E 44  45 52 20 00 20 20 20 20 | .COMMANDER .
    20: 20 20 31 39 37 2E 35 20  43 72 65 64 69 74 73 00 |   197.5 Credits.
    30: 4A 5A 48 02 53 B7 00 14  56 50 40 50 40 14 56 01 | JZH.S...VP@P@.V.
    40: 4C 41 56 45 00 00 00 00  00 04 07 00 00 03 02 05 | LAVE............
    50: 1C FF 00 00 00 F0 34 84  18 4C 41 56 45 20 20 20 | ......4..LAVE
    60: 20 00 04 07 00 00 03 02  05 1C FF 00 00 00 F0 34 |  ..............4
    70: 84 18 A4 B9 B9 AC 00 FF  00 00 00 01 00 00 00 00 | ................
    80: 00 00 00 00 00 00 01 00  B7 07 00 00 00 00 00 4A | ...............J
    90: 41 4D 45 53 4F 4E 20 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | AMESON .........
    A0: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    B0: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    C0: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    D0: 00                                               | .

$ vd NORK.CDR
     0: 43 6F 6D 6D 61 6E 64 65  72 20 66 69 6C 65 1A 0F | Commander file..
    10: 0D 43 4F 4D 4D 41 4E 44  45 52 20 00 20 20 20 20 | .COMMANDER .
    20: 20 20 35 30 33 2E 34 20  43 72 65 64 69 74 73 00 |   503.4 Credits.
    30: 4A 5A 48 02 53 B7 00 14  56 50 40 50 40 14 56 01 | JZH.S...VP@P@.V.
    40: 4C 41 56 45 00 00 00 00  00 04 07 00 00 03 02 05 | LAVE............
    50: 1C FF 00 00 00 F0 34 84  18 4C 41 56 45 20 20 20 | ......4..LAVE
    60: 20 00 04 07 00 00 03 02  05 1C FF 00 00 00 F0 34 |  ..............4
    70: 84 18 A4 B9 B9 AC 00 FF  03 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    80: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  AA 13 00 00 00 00 00 4A | ...............J
    90: 41 4D 45 53 4F 4E 20 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | AMESON .........
    A0: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    B0: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    C0: 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00  00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 | ................
    D0: 00                                               | .

Commander Jameson is obvious docked at space station Lave :)
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 14:31

Both files looks okay to me. Same size, same structure, no CR/LF conversions:


Maybe the .Exe track the created time of the saved game files? :confused:

So, maybe during the passage Elite.exe==>DosBox==>Folder the file is created with a time delay? :oops:
or the exe track the file including a train of bit in the saved game file.
Becouse if you modify by the Ex-editor the cash the saved game file don't work also. Eheheheh! :money:

I'm beginnig to be paranoid.... maybe the FBI and the NASA don't want to discover the secrets of this game.... :happyhappy:
maybe alien exist :happyhappy:
maybe I'm alien :happyhappy:
maybe.... :happyhappy:

Dam! I wanna play Elite!!!! :lol:
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby ripsaw8080 » 2008-9-26 @ 14:39

The problem is indeed the file attributes. The game clears all file attributes on the file when it creates it, and then expects all attributes to be clear when it loads it. DOSBox indicates the archive flag is set, even if it's cleared in the WinXP file system, and the game thinks this is an error condition for some reason.

I adapted another file attribute fix I've made before; this one will report no attributes for any file with a ".CDR" extension while the TSR is loaded. Source code is included.
Attachments
ELFIX.ZIP
(973 Bytes) Downloaded 1644 times
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 14:57

DOSBox indicates the archive flag is set, even if it's cleared in the WinXP file system, and the game thinks this is an error condition for some reason.


Mmmm.... really I don't understand what you said! :lol:
Where I have to put your uploaded file?In the game folder? I have to run it every time that I use dosbox to clear the saved file attribute? I run before e during the dosbox running, I run it before and after I save the game... but... don't work. I'm sure I doing someting wrong. Have you a Elfix.exe user manual for newbe? :sweatdrop:

Some one can explain me how I can see the file attribute? I need a exeditor?
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby ripsaw8080 » 2008-9-26 @ 15:05

Doesn't matter where you put it, but for simplicity just put it in the same folder as the game. It does not change attributes on files, it alters how they are reported through a DOS call.

Make sure you are running the fix inside DOSBox before you run ELITE.EXE, then the game should load saved games without the error.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 15:09

ripsaw8080 wrote:The problem is indeed the file attributes. The game clears all file attributes on the file when it creates it, and then expects all attributes to be clear when it loads it. DOSBox indicates the archive flag is set, even if it's cleared in the WinXP file system, and the game thinks this is an error condition for some reason.

A littel detective work by yours truely reveals the same - the Archive flag is set when the CDR file is created. But it works for me if I do an

ATTRIB -A *.CDR

from the Windows CMD-console before launching Elite.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 15:19

patrikup wrote:Have you a Elfix.exe user manual for newbe? :sweatdrop:

You have to run it inside DOSBox just before you run Elite:

Code: Select all
C:\> ELFIX
C:\> ELITE


patrikup wrote:Some one can explain me how I can see the file attribute? I need a exeditor?

No, right-click on the file, and choose Properties. You should see the 3 attributes:

[ ] Write protected [ ] Hidden [X] Archive

The Archive-attribute needs to be cleared for ELITE to recognize the file correctly. ripsaw800's little program tricks ELITE into thinking that the Archive attribute is clear no matter what.

I made a little BAT-file (with Notepad) called RUN.BAT that loads & run it all:

Code: Select all
@echo Loading ELFIX, an TSR by ripsaw800. Fixes a problem with file attributes.
@ELFIX.COM

@echo Loading ELITE
@ELITE.EXE


Now all I have to do is to write RUN in DOSBox :)

Now that you know all this, you should probably ditch Elite and instead use Elite Plus :) Much better sound and graphics in Elite Plus.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby ripsaw8080 » 2008-9-26 @ 15:27

That's strange... even when I clear the archive flag in WinXP, DOSBox still indicates it is set through INT 21/4300. Why would it be different for someone else?

Edit: I answered my own question. Apparently it is different when a FAT volume is in use (drive_fat.cpp vs. drive_local.cpp). The source code appears to default to just the archive flag for all files for drive_local.cpp
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby MiniMax » 2008-9-26 @ 15:41

ripsaw8080 wrote:Edit: I answered my own question. Apparently it is different when a FAT volume is in use (drive_fat.cpp vs. drive_local.cpp). The source code appears to default to just the archive flag for all files for drive_local.cpp

Or - I made a mistake. I can't get it to work now, even when I run it from my USB-stick with a FAT-filesystem.

I probably ran ELITE directly from the CMD-prompt after I had cleared the A-bit.
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby patrikup » 2008-9-26 @ 15:43

Minimax and Ripsaw8080.... I love you! :lol:

Good job men!

Elite run, save and load.

Wow really I never seen a software problem solving faster than you... :happyhappy:

About the Flag I have the same problem... Maybe if you delete the flag you have to reboot? I don't know... :confused:

However... at the last all gonna better! eheheh! Thank you very much!
You save I little student that can play only Elite between a medicine exam and boring lesson at the university. Thank you!

P.S. I dont like Elite plus so much.... I love my old 4 color graphic! eheheh! When I start to play computer at 6 year old I begin with a PC1 Olivetti Prodest (no HD only SDFloppy Drive 4 color and Ram 512KB).
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Re: "Elite" (1987) save/load problem request.

Postby GalaxyHigh » 2011-6-19 @ 18:21

I know this is a very, very late response but has anyone had issues running this uner Win 7?

I'm running DosBox 0.73 and have tried running the bat patch and manually adding attrib -a *.cmd

I notice that Win 7 doesn't archive files in the same way XP does. Could this be an issue?

Regards.

EDIT: My apologies, DosBox 0.74
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