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The Game Zone (Multiple BB Instances via AHK script) 1.0.0

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About This File

Allows you to Easily use multiple instances of Bigbox on each PC to improve speeds in navigation by splitting up platforms and running them from a single app. Also allows you to customize each instance to use different themes, platform videos, etc.. Includes a ReadMe in the folder

I wrote this AHK script to make it easy to run multiple instances of Bigbox on the same PC.

The reason I did this was I noticed my main LB/BB rig was getting so big that navigation was starting to slow down, especially in arcade using the newer themes. It was even worse on the older PC's thoughout he house. I got the idea that maybe if I split the platforms up into different copies of LB/BB I might get a smoother experience, especially on older PC's and it worked.

The script can be easily changed and customized to your needs. It's simple to change the images, background, layout, number of instances, etc. with much more than Notepad++. It takes a little work to set things up, but works pretty well after your done.

Just extract it and put the "The Game Zone" folder where you want. 

Here is what you need do to Prepare: - this is most of the work

1. Make a copy of your Launchbox folder before doing anything just as a backup in case you have a boo-boo and something gets messed up. That makes it easy to go back. I'd leave it alone until finished.


2. If your game media, including roms, (images, videos, music, manuals) is within your Launchbox folder, you will need to move or make a copy of it all to a centralized location Outside the default Launchbox folder. This excludes your Platform Categories, Platforms, Playlists folders and startup videos. Mine is actually on a shared NAS folder. This keeps you from creating and having multiple copies of your roms and game media in a later step.


3. Next, you need to edit the paths to each of them in the "Folders" section of Launchbox by right clicking on a platform, then Edit > Folders (tab) and navigate each of them to where you put the media OR edit the Platform xml (../Launchbox/Data/Platforms) files with Notepad++ so Launchbox uses the new centralized media locations. Notepad++ is faster and easier, but more chance of errors. 


4. After your media is in a centralized location, you can delete it all from your default Launchbox folders.


5. Next, make multiple copies of your edited Launchbox folder and rename them the following (only if you wish to use the script "As Is"):

LB-Arcade
LB-Retro
LB-Modern

by default the script uses your normal Launchbox instance for the Master system.


6. Lastly, you will need to edit the AHK script to match the different path instances that you have chosen. Mine are as follows and what the script is using by default:
D:\Gaming\Apps\LB-Arcade
D:\Gaming\Apps\LB-Retro
D:\Gaming\Apps\LB-Modern
D:\Gaming\Apps\LaunchBox (master system with all platforms)

After everything is all set up and working, you can play with modding to your taste and needs.

TIPS:
I do all my maintenance work in my master instance and use Syncthings to copy the appropriate platform xml files to the appropriate LB instances, that way I do the work once and the other instances are updated automatically. Yep, I'm lazy! There is a shortcut in the folder to drop on the desktop. You might have to fix the icon for it (copy of it in the "The Game Zone" folder), since my paths may be different than yours.

I think that's it. This is my first AHK script and was fun learning about AHK. You can do much more with it than I imagined.

Feel free to post questions, comments, suggestions and share what you come up with.

-Enjoy

Edited by The Papaw
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What's New in Version 1.0.0   See changelog

Released

No changelog available for this version.

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