Guide:Using Linux on the Replay

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Guide:Using Linux on the Replay

Post by WheatPasta » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:22 pm

Guide:Using Linux on the Replay

Before I start anything I have to stress that this guide is merely a reference. While I strongly encourage everyone to at least try a form of Linux I suggest that if you are new to Linux you either try so on a secondary machine or through a Live USB. There is a small chance that if something goes wrong during the install that the Replay will not boot to any OS. until you reinstall one.

Not to scare anyone away, but I accept no responsibility for any damage or data loss that happens to your Replay from using this guide. You should not cause any actual damage to your Replay, and you should back up your front end. You should also be able to use the Windows Media Creation Tool to reinstall Windows with no issue if something does happen, but I just wanted to make mention.

I have been messing around with the Replay and Windows Recovery in different ways, and due to this my Replay front end is not currently working correctly. As i have mentioned before I have backed up my front end to another drive, and I am going to try completely reinstalling Windows and copying my back up over again to see if I can get it sorted. However before I do so I figured that for science I would install Linux to the mSATA and see how well it preforms, and if there are any issues. With that being said... Lets get stuck in. (Shout out to Simply Austin there)

What you will need: A USB flash drive, your Linux Distro of choice, a keyboard to get into the BIOS, and a program called Rufus.

First for the sake of the guide here we will be using Lubuntu a version of Ubuntu with the LXDE Desktop Environment. You can read about and download it here. I have been a fan of Linux Mint, and I usually use that. However after a first install I noticed it ignoring key strokes. So I decided to give Lubuntu a try we will be using this version to test for compatibility and because it is a lighter Desktop. You of course are welcome to use any version of Linux you'd like.

There are plently other out there in general, and even quite a few geared towards lower end hardware. These include but are not limited to PeppermintOS, Bodhi, and Puppy.

Ubuntu is Debian based. So using another Ubuntu or Debian based Disto might not be exactly the same, but should be very similar. Thus this guide should get you along for the most part.

Next we will need a program to take your chosen Distro ISO and turn it into a USB boot-able drive. For that I will be using Rufus. Rufus is very portable, it does not require an install, and claims to be faster then other USB boot-able makers.Insert a USB drive you would like to use to make the drive, and run Rufus. Rufus should detect the USB drive you inserted, but it is always good to double check the name and drive letter to make sure you write to the correct device. Next under boot selection make sure Disk or ISO is chosen, and then click Select. Navigate to your ISO you downloaded and click open.

Leave everything as it is, and click Start.Rufus might ask do you want to download and update after clicking. Select yes, and then it might say ISO Hybrid image detected. Select Write in ISO and click OK. It will warn you that the drive will be formatted. Click Ok, and wait.This might take a few moments to finish even more so if using the Replay to do this. It took me about 3 mins to do it on my Replay.

Next we will want to leave the stick in, and restart the Replay.Once you see the yellow Replay BIOS screen come. When using my wireless combo I am able to hit the escape key to get into the BIOS, but not the F7 key to get into the boot choice screen. If you can use a wired USB keyboard, and start tapping the Escape key. This will get us into the BIOS. We need to turn off secure boot to make life easier during the install process.

Go over to the Security tab in the BIOS. Then down to Secure Boot, and then disable. Now go to Save and Exit. This will cause the Replay to reboot. If you only have a wireless keyboard when rebooting tap escape again. This time go into Boot, and under Boot Option #1 change it to your USB drive. Then reboot. If you are wired tap the F7 key when the yellow Replay screen comes back up. This will bring up the boot menu. One of these things in the list should be the name of the USB drive you have plugged in. Scroll down to it, and press enter. Then at the next screen press enter on Try Lununtu Without Installing, and wait for it to boot.


Once it boots you will be in Live USB mode, and any wireless keyboard and mouse you have should function completely now. You can stop at this point, and use the Replay in this state as a Desktop computer. However none of your work or files will be saved in this state. This usually tends to be used to test compatibility before committing to a full install, or to repair an existing install in some way. Use this mode to see how you feel about Linux and how well it runs for you.

However for the sake of this guide we are going to commit to a full install. So click the little Install Lubuntu icon, and follow the Wizard. Once you get to the Wireless portion you should connect to your network, and then select to install third party software. This is where I ran into a problem with Secure Boot enabled. With it enabled the Lubuntu Wizard said I needed to set a password to disable it, and I have a feeling if I happen to forget that password I would end up in a tough spot. So make sure to disable Secure Boot first as mentioned above before hand.

Next we come to the instillation type. Here for me personally I want just Ubuntu to install to the mSATA. So i'll select Erase disk and install Lubuntu, Then in the next menu it is very important to select the mSATA from the top right drop down that says EMMC. Mine is 120 GB ATA Kingrich KM9 128. Then click install now, and continue. This will start the instillation process. During this time you will want to set things like Time Zone, and your log in name. Follow the Wizard and set accordingly. After you finish the set up go grab a coffee, and when it is done the system will ask you to reboot and remove the USB drive.

Congratulations you are now running a full install of Lubuntu. After the reboot you can start doing computer things.
If you are having a software problem be it front end, Windows, or want to try RetroArch and LauchBox but need help feel free to contact me. Post on the forum, PM here, or on Discord. I will be more then happy to do my best to get you sorted.

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Re: Guide:Using Linux on the Replay

Post by WheatPasta » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:23 pm

Updating
After the install has finished and your reboot the Replay the first thing you will want to do is check for updates. To do this click the menu icon, go down to System Tools, and click Software Updater. This will check for updates, and if any are found it will ask if you want to download them. You can click Details to see what they are.

After you set them to download and install you will want to go to the menu. Then scroll to Preferences, and click Power Manager. in here go to the display tab, and turn all the sliders to the far left making them say never. Now go to the Security tab, and change Automatically lock the screen to Never. This will make it so that the Replay will never blank the screen while you are in Retro Pie, and you won't have to enter a password to bring it back if you don't set the blanking to Never.

Testing wise everything seems to be okay. key presses are fine under Lubuntu. Firefox comes installed so you can get online, and some basic software as well as a few games are included. You can click the menu and then go to System Tools again. Then this time to Software, and browse right from your desktop to grab more applications and games. The only issue OS and hardware wise I have had so far is that the WiFi signal strength under Lubuntu is a little lower then under Windows when the Replay is in the same spot for me.

Installing Retro Pie
Important
I have left the install instructions to install RetroPie on top of Ubuntu below. I have used them before successfully to install Ubuntu with Retro Pie on top on countless machines. However the Replay is now not one of them. I tried a complete fresh install from scratch to the mSATA of Linux Mint XFCE. While I did not get to test RetroPie on it when I would type it would ignore some of the key presses. So then I tried Lubuntu and Xubuntu. Both of these would install the Retro Pie front end, and navigate it fine. However after launching a game the screen would just go black. I tried different systems, different cores for the same system, and different controllers with no luck.

I then thought since Lu and Xubuntu were so light that something might be missing that Retro Arch needs to run. So I did a fresh complete install of Ubuntu MATE, and I had the same issue. So for the time being I am going to try installing ReactOS just to see how far it has come, and then I suppose it is back to Windows I go for now.

You are able to install Retro Pie on top of an Ubuntu install. Most things in Linux these days can be done from the desktop. However to install Retro Pie we have to visit our friend the terminal. Don't run away just yet! You can follow this quick guide right here. I will copy it over so you don't have to go back and forth

Click the menu, go to System Tools, and then click LXTerminal. Now we just need to copy and paste a few lines highlight and copy one line then click back into the terminal. Hold CTRL and Shift at the same time then tap the V key to paste. Then press enter to execute the command you pasted in, and move to the next line.

First line
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade (It will ask for your log in password to continue)

Second line
sudo apt-get install -y git dialog unzip xmlstarlet

Third line
git clone --depth=1 https://github.com/RetroPie/RetroPie-Setup.git

Fourth line
cd RetroPie-Setup

Fifth line
sudo ./retropie_setup.sh

After pressing enter and running the fifth line if you have used Retro Pie before you should see the familiar setup script menu. If this is your first Retro Pie rodeo press enter on Update Retro Pie setup script to make sure you have the most recent version, and then press enter on basic install. This will install Retro Pie and the more general emulators. Once that is done you can close the terminal window.

Now click the little folder icon next to the menu icon in your task bar. This should bring up a file manger window like Windows Explorer, and you should be at /home/(your usermane) you should see a RetroPie and RetroPie-Setup folder. Click the RetroPie folder. Inside there will be the BIOS and roms folder. Grab what ever roms you want and place them in the correct system folder. Then drop what ever BIOS you need in the BIOS folder.

Plug in a controller. Now it is time launch Retro Pie. Go to the menu, scroll to games, and click rpie. I plugged in the Replay controller dongle, got into Retro Pie, and held a button for a second. It came up as a Xbox 360 controller and I was able to map it fine. I would set the Hotkey enable to select. This will allow you to press start and select to exit a game. Then you can choose another.
If you are having a software problem be it front end, Windows, or want to try RetroArch and LauchBox but need help feel free to contact me. Post on the forum, PM here, or on Discord. I will be more then happy to do my best to get you sorted.

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Re: Guide:Using Linux on the Replay

Post by WheatPasta » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:23 pm

Notes
As mentioned above I could not get RetroPie to install on the Replay. I have had it installed on a laptop, desktop, and older mini PC with no issues. So I left the instructions there for anyone who wants to try on a different machine.

I also tried to install React OS. I tried both the boot and the install ISO files. I could not get either to work. I have used React OS before. It is an open source OS that is binary compatible to Windows. Progress is a little slow, but it is still being actively developed.
If you are having a software problem be it front end, Windows, or want to try RetroArch and LauchBox but need help feel free to contact me. Post on the forum, PM here, or on Discord. I will be more then happy to do my best to get you sorted.

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