Sunday, 11 December 2011

ROM image

A ROM image, or ROM file, is a computer book which contains a archetype of the abstracts from a read-only anamnesis chip, generally from a video bold cartridge, a computer's firmware, or from an arcade game's capital board. The appellation is frequently acclimated in the ambience of emulation, whereby earlier amateur or computer firmware are affected to ROM files on avant-garde computers and can, application a allotment ofcomputer application accepted as an emulator, be run on the newer computer.

Software testing

ROM images are acclimated back developing for anchored computers. Software which is actuality developed for anchored computers is generally accounting to ROM files for testing on a accepted computer afore it is accounting to a ROM dent for use in the anchored system.

Digital preservation

The lifespan of digital media is rarely great. While black-and-white photographs may survive for a century or more, many digital media can become unreadable after only 10 years. This is beginning to become a problem as early computer systems may be presently fifty or sixty years old while early home video consoles may be almost thirty years old. Due to this aging, there is a significant worry that many early computer and video games may not survive without being transferred to new media. So, those with an interest in preservation are actively seeking older arcade and video games and attempting to dump them to ROM images. When stored on standardized media such as CD-ROMs and DVD-ROMs, they can be copied to future media with significantly reduced effort.23

The trend towards mass digital distribution of ROMs images, while potentially damaging to copyright holders, may also have a positive effect on preservation. While over time many original copies of older games may deteriorate, be broken or thrown away, a copy in ROM or Image form may be distributed throughout the world, allowing games which would otherwise have been lost a greater chance of survival


In some countries, it is acknowledged for an alone to alone accomplish advancement copies of a bold they own. Individuals may accomplish advancement copies for assorted reasons, conceivably as allowance adjoin accident the bold or as back-up in the accident that the aboriginal game's average becomes unreadable. See the area on ROMs and Preservation.

However, in the U.S. it has been actionable back 1983 for a user to actualize their own backups of video bold ROMs assimilate added cartridges. This was absitively in the cloister case of Atari v. JS&A. JS&A bogus a "game backup" accessory that accustomed users to dump their Atari ROMs assimilate a bare cartridge. JS&A argued that the archival aphorism accustomed for this. The cloister disagreed, acquainted that ROM media was not accountable to the aforementioned animation as alluring media (for which the law was created). Thus, not actuality so almost vulnerable, ROMs were not applicative beneath area 17 USC 117(a)(2).5

Chuck Cochems has put alternating the altercation that artful a accepted account ofcomputer application accurately for claimed use with an adversary is accurately acceptable beneath attempt accustomed by the Sony v. Universal ruling, decidedly with attention to claimed use actuality favorable appear absolution beneath the fair use doctrine.6

Some amateur companies, such as Nintendo, book warnings central their bold manuals that they do not acquiesce users to accomplish advancement or archival copies. Whether or not these warnings in this specific anatomy can be advised accurate affairs is accurately questionable. For an overview of accordant issues, see user acceding (EULA), compress blanket contract, clickwrap, Fair Use, Fair Dealing and DMCA.

ROM images may be anon accountant by the rights holder. For example, Atari already fabricated a cardinal of their aboriginal arcade amateur accessible in ROM architecture which is accordant with the MAME adversary through the online ROM banker Star ROMs. Nintendo provides a account on their 7th bearing console, the Wii, that allows players to acquirement old amateur from assorted systems, such as the NES, which will download a ROM angel and adversary aloft acquirement (see Virtual Console). This is agnate to the PlayStation Store re-releases of amateur for the aboriginal PlayStation for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable, and the Xbox Live Arcade's re-release of abounding old video amateur such as the aboriginal Sonic the Hedgehog for the Xbox 360.

The all-inclusive majority of computer and video amateur from the history of such amateur are no best manufactured. As such, the absorb holders of some amateur accept offered chargeless licenses to those games, generally on the action that they be acclimated for non-commercial purposes only. For example, fourteen of the amateur emulated in MAME, including Gridlee and Robby Roto, accept been fabricated accessible beneath such licenses and are broadcast by the MAME project