torsdag 31 maj 2012

Problems upgrading WiFi + BlueTooth on HP laptop

My mission: Upgrade the Broadcom 54mbps WiFi in my old HP 530 laptop to something faster, "Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6230" (300mbit N-card with Bluetooth). It was not as easy as I first thought :(

First problem: Full-length vs half-length PCI Express Mini. The newer card was (like most other cards) half-length, to fit that in the older computer I needed an adapter which was about €1 on eBay.

Second problem: "104-Unsupported wireless network device detected". The BIOS of most HP/Compaq laptops whitelist only a few specific wifi cards and will not boot if they detect any other card. This is f*cked up and this alone makes me never buy an HP laptop again (or a Lenovo, which appearantly does the same). I bought the laptop, let me do what I want with it!
Fortunatelly, some very skilled people have found ways to disable the lock-out in the BIOS and have published these hacked BIOSes. See links below.

Just make sure you don't accidentally downgrade your BIOS. And of course, do this at your own risk, etc :)

Third problem: No Bluetooth device detected by Windows. The wifi device was found in device manager and worked fine after I downloaded the appropriate drivers. However, no Bluetooth devices were found or listed in the device manager - like the Bluetooth didn't even exist. Unfortunatelly, after reading a bit about the PCI Express Mini standard, I realize that it has two interfaces: PCI-e and USB. I think that the Bluetooth portion of the card works over the USB interface, while the wifi use the PCI-e interface, and that none of my two computers implement the USB interface, only the PCI-e interface. Either that or only the BT component of my card is broken, but I think that is less likely. So... Pity, I'll have to get a Bluetooth USB dongle I guess. But at least the wireless is a lot faster now :)

Please let me know if this helped you! Also please share any additional findings about this if you can!

Links I learned stuff from:!-HP-COMPAQ-bioses-how-to-modify-the-bios/page111?p=333358#post333358

tisdag 8 maj 2012

Backup savegames from Indiana Jones on Steam (and probably other games)

I needed to copy the savegames for the Steam/LucasArts/SCUMM game "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" from one Windows 7 PC to another. The files were not that easy to find...

The files are located here:
"C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\indiana jones and the last crusade\INDY3\savegame.___"
"C:\Users\<your username>\AppData\roaming\LucasArts\Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade\*.*"

You need to copy the both the "savegame.___ " file and all files in the other folder and copy them to the corresponding location on the other computer.

I would guess this applies to other Steam/LucasArts classics as well.

Also note that using the Steam function "Verify integrity of game cache" can actually overwrite your Indiana save games! This is because Steam thinks the "savegame.___" file is a game data file and thus overwrites it with some file one they have on their servers! Because they don't change the other files, they will mismatch and wont be possible to load. That happened to me, but I was fortunate enough to recover my savegames by using system restore (or whatever it is called) - right-click on the file, Properties, Previous versions. Copy the old version.

Based on the fact that one of the savegame folders are for all users, and one which is specific for the current computer user, I think trying to run the game using different Windows accounts on the same computer would probably not work and might corrupt savegames!

I would be happy to post this info to Steam's support and the Steam forums instead, but because they for some moronic reason require separate accounts, I write about it here instead.

By the way, I wouldn't recommend anyone to buy the LucasArts classics from Steam. Even though non-steam of the games are made for DOS/Amiga/etc, you can use ScummVM to play the games on virtually any operating system and hardware.

Hope this was usefull to anyone!