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Bizhawk / Compiling

Bizhawk is a C# emulator.

Building it is virtually the same as every other TASing emulator. It can be compiled with the free Visual Studio 2015 express (or community editions), or Visual Studio 2010 Professional editions[1].

  1. Make sure you have a compatible Visual Studio; Visual Studio Community 2015 is recommended. When installing it, be sure to uncheck all the options as they are not needed for BizHawk. UPDATE: not sure how true that is in 2015.
  2. Install TortoiseGIT. Take care to read their faqs about prerequisites which include demanding "Git for Windows 2.0+"
  3. Create a directory and make sure it's empty. It's always a good idea to pick a directory name without spaces in it; this tutorial will use "C:\BizHawk".
  4. Right-click in it and pick "Git Clone". In the box "URL" enter "https://github.com/TASVideos/bizhawk". Leave everything else blank and click "OK". Now some files will be downloaded from GitHub.
  5. Find "BizHawk.sln" among the downloaded files and double-click it. If you get prompted to sign in, pick "not now" unless you want your life more complicated on account of someone trying too hard to make it too simple. If this is the first time you've run Visual Studio, you'll get prompted for "Development Settings". The current setting is "General". Change it to "Visual C++". If you choose anything else, nobody will be able to tell give you suggestions for hotkeys. Then pick "Start Visual Studio".
  6. You should have the *.sln file open now and see a "Solution Explorer". Look for "BizHawk.Client.EmuHawk", right-click it, and pick "Set As Startup Project". Now go to "Build | Configuration Manager" in the menu, change the active solution configuration to "Release" and pick "Close". UPDATE: but first, make sure it doesnt say x64 anywhere it could say x86.
  7. Finally you're at the point where you'll usually be at when checking out a new BizHawk build: hit Ctrl+F5 to build and run it.

Before you can use some of the emulator cores, you'll need to drop in some firmware files; the right spot to put them will be at "C:\BizHawk\output\Firmware".

Now, for an important part. To pull down Git updates so you can build them, right-click "C:\BizHawk" and pick "TortoiseGit > Pull" and click OK. You can now repeat the build-and-run step in Visual Studio to test the new build.

Note: For general orientation on how to use Git, which requires degrees in Hacking, Advanced Wizardry, and Deciding Which of A Thousand Ways To Do Things, consult several of the million web pages describing at excruciating length how to do simple things in Git, because it's just so simple.

If your Git checkout ever gets wrecked and can't build then close Visual Studio, make a backup of your "C:\BizHawk" directory, then make a new one and go back to step 3. The backups will be helpful recovering from mistakes and re-incorporating saved data and states from previous play sessions in the last checkout you made.

If a developer wants your help debugging something, the single best thing you can do is to run BizHawk with F5 instead of Ctrl+F5; when the program crashes you can select the contents of the call stack window and copy them out.


[1] If your VS2010 complains on the solution version being newer, install SP1 for it.

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Bizhawk/Compiling last edited by zeromus on 2017-02-16 06:56:26
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