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Thread: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

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    Talking The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    The Mod Userís Best Friend Ė The Mod-Switcher

    Created by the mighty Vercingetorix, this is _the_ way to install and uninstall RTW mods quickly, easily and with the minimum of fuss. It allows you to install and uninstall mods with just a single click of a button and you can use it for practically any mod you want.

    No more wasted space with multiple data folders or tedious uninstalling and reinstalling the game every time you want to play a new mod. Now, you can keep your data folder as pure vanilla, leave the Mod-Switcher to deal with backing up the files and restoring your originals and swap from mod to mod as your fancy takes you.

    And hereís a step by step guide as to how to use it:

    Step One:
    Download Vercingetorixís Mod-Switcher programme

    Step Two:
    Place the Modswitcher .exe file in your Rome Ė Total War folder (the one with the RomeTW.exe in) as pictured:



    Step Three:
    Double click on it to run it and youíll get a screen like this:



    Go to Create RMOD

    Step Four:
    This is where youíll create the .rmd file that will include all the information needed for the Mod-Switcher to install the mod.



    Follow the instructions onscreen. First of all you need to drag the Data folder of the mod you want to install into the window or alternatively you can browse for it.

    The Data folder will normally (though not always) be the file that you have downloaded. Itís just like the Data folder for the game, except that it only contains the modded versions of the files that are to be changed. The directory structure should match that of the game.

    For example, here is the data folder for one of my own mods: the Proper Wonders on the Battlefield mod. The WDN file has just been downloaded and unzipped and this is whatís inside.



    As you can read, the Data folder includes the modded versions of various text files. The mod also needs a change to the descr_strat file and so inside this Data folder youíll find another folder called world and more that directly match the gameís directory.

    As the file contains the correct directory structure, you donít have to worry about it. Just drag the Data folder into the Mod-Switcher panel.



    Dragging the Data folder into the window fills in its correct address. We then also add in manually the Mod Name and the Mod Version, so we can keep track of our existing mods.

    Several mods require you to delete a file before they will operate, the Mod-Switcher will do it for you. Just fill in the name of the file in the Files to Remove section starting with the gameís Data folder.

    In this case, the mod requires we delete the map.rwm file in the base folder (this is often the case with mods as otherwise changes to the map may not take effect). So, starting with the data folder we give it itís address of data\world\maps\base\map.rwm

    Step Five:
    Now we can go to the Make RMOD menu and click on Make RMOD.

    This brings up this panel which asks you where you want to save the RMOD. You want to save the RMOD to your Rome Ė Total War directory. The same directory that you have the Mod Switcher programme in.



    Once youíve typed in an appropriate filename and pressed save, the Mod Switcher will now create the RMOD file.



    Step Six:
    Now thatís done, the Proper Wonders mod will now appear in the list of available mods. To install it, just select it and click install.



    It will then show up as the Current mod. You can either launch the game from inside Mod Switcher or, if you use command line switches, you can exist and launch the game normally.



    To uninstall it, just click Uninstall!

    And now you can install and uninstall this mod with just a click of the button.

    Find out more information about the Mod-Switcher, as well as posing technical questions to Vercingetorix himself, here.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  2. #2
    Member Member Alexander the Pretty Good's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    I remember this baby when it had no GUI for the "creat RMOD" function. Scared me off, it did.

    Hell yeah this looks good. And will save me a *crap* load of time and effort! Thanks a million times to Vercingetorix, modding diety!

    And to ER, for sharing this gem!

    Now, if just the mod-makers will release .RMD files instead of whole installers...


  3. #3
    Eliminated Faction Heir Member Laridus Konivaich's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander the Pretty Good
    Now, if just the mod-makers will release .RMD files instead of whole installers...
    It is possible, I will in fact bring it up for the AoH team. Sorry for not doing my homework, but does the .rmd fiel type offer any compression? Another feature that would be very nice in RMOD would be support for running .exe patch files for the packs, as mods that change the 'apparent culture' of the factions want to include these, since uploading 150mb or larger .pak files is not really an option.
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  4. #4
    The Lion Prince Member Sundjata Keita's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    No offence here Epistolary Richard but shouldn't this go in the guides forum Great tutorial BTW, I shall certainly use it and the mod switcher for ZTW.

  5. #5

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    It will do ultimately, but right at the moment this has been intentionally placed here as the first step of some new initiatives that we're working on.
    Last edited by Epistolary Richard; 07-03-2005 at 20:52.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  6. #6

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Quote Originally Posted by Prince Laridus Konivaich
    It is possible, I will in fact bring it up for the AoH team. Sorry for not doing my homework, but does the .rmd fiel type offer any compression? Another feature that would be very nice in RMOD would be support for running .exe patch files for the packs, as mods that change the 'apparent culture' of the factions want to include these, since uploading 150mb or larger .pak files is not really an option.
    I'm not 100% sure on compression, but I think I remember that it doesn't. The benefits in terms of space saved on the HD is that the RMOD file will only include those files that the mod alters, not an entire data folder as in the case of multiple installs.

    Obviously, for the purpose of uploading/downloading the RMOD file can be zipped, but I don't know what sort of compression % it gives.

    As for patch.paks, no problem whatsoever. I used exactly the same process to create an RMOD file for a mod that was a combination of text files and a patch.pak and it worked like a charm.
    .
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  7. #7

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Just tried out the compression, for the Proper Wonders mod at least, the compressed RMOD was pretty much exactly the same size as the compressed files.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  8. #8
    Modding Godfather Member Vercingetorix's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Great tutorial Epistolary Richard! I must admit my tutorial writing abilities are no match to yours
    I have found God.

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    Modder Member Encaitar's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Can RMOD run .bat files as part of the install process?

    For me:tw for instance, there are a few bat files that are run during the install process. They're not all completely necessary, but without them the download size would increase from about 60MB to over 160MB.
    Encaitar Arandur

    Middle-earth: Total War Dev

  10. #10
    Modding Godfather Member Vercingetorix's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    You can, in the advanced options you have "Install executable" and "Uninstall executable". Just put the appropriate .bat filenames in the boxes. One thing you should be aware of is that the .bat files must be placed in the data\ folder of your mod so that they're copied on install, they are also run AFTER the install/uninstall process.

    If you have any questions or problems please ask.
    I have found God.

  11. #11
    Member Member Alexander the Pretty Good's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Question - does Mod-Switcher support command line switches? Like -show_err?

    If it doesn't, could support be added in a future release? Pretty please?

  12. #12
    CeltiberoRamiroI Member Monkwarrior's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    In my experience ModSwitcher was very useful, but I used a mixed installation. The rmod file contained only the files that replaced the original ones. All the other files were installed in a "classical" way (due to compression questions). Those files, the rmod and even ModSwitcher were included in a self-installer (.exe) file, able also to uninstall the mod.
    The shortcut of the game will be shared by all the mods, so it would contain the commands you put in it (ex. -show_err).
    Probably, the final release of the mod will have the same structure, without ModSwitcher if it is already popular enough.

  13. #13

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    That sounds like a good combination, what were the compression questions you mentioned?
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  14. #14
    CeltiberoRamiroI Member Monkwarrior's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    I wasn't sure if rmod had any compression at all, or if it would be compressed in the self-installer file.
    In that way I was sure that the final file was not too large. (Perhaps I'm wrong, it would be necessary to test if rmod is compressed by the common installer programs )

  15. #15

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    I don't believe the RMOD has any compression, but my experiments with my own files showed that a zipped RMOD was the same size as a zip of the regular files.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  16. #16
    Modding Godfather Member Vercingetorix's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Correct the RMOD has no compression but they compress fairly well (about the same as all the files separately).
    I have found God.

  17. #17
    Member Member Alexander the Pretty Good's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Ave, Vercingetorix! Some things...


    Issue/Comment: Maybe it's just me, but when I'm making or installing a .RMOD file, doing things like opening new windows makes the bar graph stop or the whole little window goes blank. As long as you don't touch anything, it finishes making the .RMOD file and all is well. I suspect it's my stupid laptop, though.

    Icing on the cake - my wishlist if there is any life after version 1.0.

    1) Allow command line switches from the ModSwitcher launch window. Preferably with check boxes and the switches separated into conveniant categories. I would dedicate a shrine to you if you implemented this, Vercingetorix.

    2) Flexibility with version numbers. I want to have version numbers that have multiple periods and or letters. Ie, Chivalry Total War v.27b or DarthMod v5.3.2 - which currently is impossible. Worth a half shrine, tops.

    3) Back-up. I guess I could make one now by dragging the original data folder into the "Make a .ROMD file" screen, but a built-in back-up would be cool. As long as it wasn't too big. Half a shrine, at least.

    4) Allow [limited] editing to .ROMD files. IE, I had a .RMOD file for a version 2.5, but now 3 is out and I don't want the hassle of deleting and making new files. Same procedure as making a new one, just somewhat faster. If possible, two shrines.

    5) Compression. Even a little would be good. Because if I want to have multiple total conversions, it starts to add up. But not too much compression, if it takes long to load. This is three shrines.

    6) Teach me your ways, master - I'm interested in learning how you did this. What language or wizard did you use? Another shrine.

    If you grant my wishes, I'll dedicate 8 (count 'em, eight!) shrines in your honor. Thank you for making this wonderful tool, Vercingetorix.

  18. #18
    Insanity perhaps is inevitable Member shifty157's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Are there any problems with saved games if you switch from one mod to another and then back again?

  19. #19
    Modding Godfather Member Vercingetorix's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander the Pretty Good
    Ave, Vercingetorix! Some things...


    Issue/Comment: Maybe it's just me, but when I'm making or installing a .RMOD file, doing things like opening new windows makes the bar graph stop or the whole little window goes blank. As long as you don't touch anything, it finishes making the .RMOD file and all is well. I suspect it's my stupid laptop, though.

    Icing on the cake - my wishlist if there is any life after version 1.0.

    1) Allow command line switches from the ModSwitcher launch window. Preferably with check boxes and the switches separated into conveniant categories. I would dedicate a shrine to you if you implemented this, Vercingetorix.

    2) Flexibility with version numbers. I want to have version numbers that have multiple periods and or letters. Ie, Chivalry Total War v.27b or DarthMod v5.3.2 - which currently is impossible. Worth a half shrine, tops.

    3) Back-up. I guess I could make one now by dragging the original data folder into the "Make a .ROMD file" screen, but a built-in back-up would be cool. As long as it wasn't too big. Half a shrine, at least.

    4) Allow [limited] editing to .ROMD files. IE, I had a .RMOD file for a version 2.5, but now 3 is out and I don't want the hassle of deleting and making new files. Same procedure as making a new one, just somewhat faster. If possible, two shrines.

    5) Compression. Even a little would be good. Because if I want to have multiple total conversions, it starts to add up. But not too much compression, if it takes long to load. This is three shrines.

    6) Teach me your ways, master - I'm interested in learning how you did this. What language or wizard did you use? Another shrine.

    If you grant my wishes, I'll dedicate 8 (count 'em, eight!) shrines in your honor. Thank you for making this wonderful tool, Vercingetorix.
    Most of those features I can add, I'll work work on them. As for the progress bar freezing this is something I've noticed and need to fix. It will actually work as usual the bar is just not updated so if that ever happens be patient and it'll finish. The program is written in c/c++, If you are interested in programming I recommend getting a good book, read as many tutorials online as you can and code code code
    I have found God.

  20. #20

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Quote Originally Posted by shifty157
    Are there any problems with saved games if you switch from one mod to another and then back again?
    Not that I've experienced, obviously if you try and load a saved game from the Chivalry Mod into SPQR then you're going to have problems, so it's a good idea to mark the saved games with the mod they're played with.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  21. #21
    Member Member Alexander the Pretty Good's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    That would be another interesting feature - something that manages all your saved games by mod type.

    Thank you, Vercingetorix - I can't wait for the next edition!

  22. #22

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    OMGosh!!!

    TY friend!

    I have been searching net for an RTW mod manager for hours! You are the best!

    Thx again m8 :)
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Check out Shogun : Total War Mod for RTW in development! >>> http://www.stratcommandcenter.com/fo...p?showforum=97

  23. #23
    Insanity perhaps is inevitable Member shifty157's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Ive been using the modswitcher for a while now and it works fine with saved games.

    Would it be possible to make a version that can add files that are not in the /data folder? This would be done in the same manual way that removing files would be done. It would be a nice touch.

    Regardless im very pleased with this.

  24. #24
    Member Member sunray's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Hi,

    I have recently installed RTR V6, by first doing a new install of RTW and then installing the 1.2 patch. Because I do not want to have several installs of RTW, I then installed the Mod Switcher. After that I created a mod (using the Mod Switcher) for Chivilary: Total War. The Switcher told me I had created it successfully.

    Trouble is, when I install, and launch the mod, it seems to load the mod OK, but the game stalls on the Chivilary: Total War introductory screen. Then when I press "escape", it throws me out to the Mod Switcher window where I launched it from.

    Can anyone give me any clues as to what I could be doing wrong. I donít ask the Mod Switcher to delete any game files, so it should only be copying the Chivilary data file over the RTR data file (which replaces the RTW data file when RTR is installed).

    I assumed that there would be no difference between how the Mod Switcher sees vanilla RTW, and how it sees RTW modded to RTR. Or did I assume wrong?

    Any help would be appreciated.

    regards

    sunray
    Last edited by sunray; 08-14-2005 at 22:38.

  25. #25

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    There wouldn't be any differences as to how it works. But I think you'll find that the problem is that Chivalry does not replace all the files that RTR does. So when you try to install Chivalry the game is trying to use a combination of RTR and Chivalry files. You should only really use the Mod Switcher on a v1.2 install if you want to switch between mods that weren't designed to work with each other (which is almost all of them).
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  26. #26
    Member Member sunray's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Epistolary Richard,

    Thanks for the info, and the prompt response.

    So, based on what you have advised, I guess that the problem is of my own making. Maybe, if I start again, and do a vanilla RTW + 1.2 patch install, then using the Mod Switcher, create a mod for RTR and a mod for Chivilary, I may have what I want. Is this what you would advise?

    I am simply trying to get away from having two installs of RTW.

    regards

    sunray

  27. #27

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Yes, that's what I'd go for. I've certainly used the Mod Switcher with Chiv with no trouble. Never tried it with RTR, but so long as you auto-install to an empty folder that should give you the Data folder you need to make the RMOD. Let me download it and have a look.

    Oh, but just to be sure, make a copy of your Data file once you've installed the 1.2 patch. Just as a backup in case something goes wrong.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  28. #28

    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Right, well, I've downloaded RTR6 and I don't see anything that would stop it working as an RMOD. I can't test it unfortunately, so I can't say for sure, but it only has two files outside the data folder. One's a bat, that looks like it makes some back ups and the other is a suggested preference file. Obviously you can use whatever preference file you like.
    Epistolary Richard's modding Rules of Cool
    Cool modders make their mods with the :mod command line switch
    If they don't, then Cool mod-users use the Mod Enabler (JSGME)
    Cool modders use show_err
    Cool modders use the tutorials database Cool modders check out the Welcome to the Modding Forums! thread Cool modders keep backups Cool modders help each other out

  29. #29
    Member Member sunray's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Epistolary Richard,

    Thanks for the time and effort that you have devoted to my problem. I believe you have shown me the way ahead, that will allow me to have both of these mods available within the Mod Switcher framework.

    I now believe I have a good chance of success, and I will give the suggested process a try.

    Thanks again for your time and consideration.

    regards

    sunray

  30. #30
    Member Member Tyford's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Mod User's Best Friend - the Mod-Switcher

    Is it just me, or can't you download the mod switcher? The link doesn';t led me to a download screen, only giving me warnings on the webpage it takes me to.

    Thank you

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