This thread contains answers to the most common questions regarding the Dreamcast emulator named Chankast (a.k.a Chanka or ChankaDC).
This FAQ does not cover questions regarding the usage of a Dreamcast or software that runs on a Dreamcast.
VERY IMPORTANT NOTES:
1: Make sure that you are using the latest official Chankast version before reading this FAQ (get it from the official Chanka site). The latest official version is v0.25.
2: Many questions of this FAQ are already answered in the official Chankast manual (make sure that you have read it before reading this FAQ).
Q: What system requirements does Chankast have?
A: In order to be able to use Chankast your PC must meet the following requirements:
Intel Pentium 4, AMD Athlon XP or any other processor that supports SSE (2 Ghz or faster recommended)
ATI Radeon or Nvidia GeForce video card (or any other card that supports hardware T&L)
Windows XP, 2003 or 2K (other Windows versions will not work)
Note that you must also have the two necessary Dreamcast bios files called "dc_bios.bin" and "dc_flash.bin" in order to run this emulator.
If your PC does not meet all the above requirements the emulator will not work correctly or even not at all.
Q: Every time I try to run Chankast it shows a "your CPU doesn't support SSE" error. What's wrong?
A: Make sure that your CPU supports SSE (older CPUs do not). If you are sure that your CPU supports SSE but you still get the same error then you have to enable it from the BIOS configuration of your mainboard.
1: Some older mainborards need a BIOS update in order to let you enable SSE while some others do not support SSE at all.
2: Do not use programs that "enable" SSE. They will probably make the emulator crash.
Q: Every time I try to run Chankast it shows an error about "ddraw.dll" or "d3d9.dll" or another ".dll" file. How do I fix that?
A: Install directX 9b or newer.
Q: Every time I try to run Chankast it shows an error saying that my video card is not directX compatible or my desktop color depth is not 32 bit. How do I fix that?
A: Update your video card drivers and make sure that your desktop color depth is 32 bit.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Some older video cards may not have drivers compatible with directX 9b. In that case you have to get a newer video card.
Q: Every time I try to run Chankast it crashes with a "Chankast.exe has encountered a problem and need to close" error. How can I fix this problem?
A: Updating your video card drivers will probably fix this problem. If not, close any unnecessary applications and try again.
IMPORTANT NOTE: The emulator will probably crash if you try to use the ASPI CD-ROM Interface while having any custom IDE drivers installed. Refer to the "I can't make Chankast run games under Windows 2K, why?" question for instructions on how to solve this problem.
Q: How do I run games?
A: The emulator supports only selfbootable backups, original and non-selfbootable disks will not work.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Running CDs is not generally recommended, prefer using CD images instead.
Q: How do I run CD images?
A: You have to use a virtual CD-ROM drive and mount the CD images to it.
Q: Every time I try to run a .cdi CD image of a game I get an I/O control error. Why?
A: This is caused by the software that was used to create these CD images and it's not a fault of the emulator. If you want to make these images work with Chankast do one of the following:
1: Use Daemon Tools v3.29 to mount you CD images (other versions of Daemon tools will probably NOT work).
2: Use a tool to convert the CD image to another format (this does not always work).
3: Use Diskjuggler to burn the CD image to a CD-R(W) and create another CD image using another sofware (CloneCD, Nero, etc.). You may have to use an older version of Diskjuggler to burn the CD image or the game may not work.
Q: I can't make Chankast run games under Windows XP. I always get a "can't read TOC from x:drive" error. Why?
A: Use the xxx CD-ROM interface of the emulator or read the next question.
Q: I can't make Chankast run games under Windows 2K, why?
A: Make sure that you have the latest ASPI drivers installed and selected the ASPI CD-ROM interface from the plugin configuration of the emulator.
1: If you get a "can't read TOC from x:drive" error you may have to install ASPI drivers v4.71 from HERE and after that install v4.60 from HERE in order to make it work.
2: You must not have custom IDE drivers installed when installing the ASPI drivers (use the IDE drivers that come with windows). If you have, the emulator will probably crash.
To unistall any custom IDE drivers manually do one of the following:
1: Go into the windows device manager and then to the ATA/ATAPI controllers section. Then select the IDE controller and then the drivers tab and click update drivers. Then select choose driver from list and then check show all hardware. Finally install the 'Standard Dual channel PCI IDE controller' and reboot. After that, install the ASPI drivers.
2: If your Mainboard has an NVidia nForce chipset install the latest drivers for it and make sure to choose "No" when the installer asks you if you want to install nVidia's custom IDE drivers.
Q: I can't make Chankast run games under Windows 9x/ME, why?
A: The emulator is able to run games only under Windows XP/2000/2003.
Q: Every time I try to run a game Chankast recognizes it as a music CD or thinks that there isn't a CD in the drive, why?
A: This can be caused by the following things:
1: You're trying to run an original Dreamcast disk (GD-ROM). These disks are not supported by the emulator.
2: You're trying to run a game using the "XXX CD-ROM Interface" on Windows 2K. This Interface is not supported in Windows 2K so you MUST use the ASPI CD-ROM Interface when using Chankast on Windows 2K.
3: You're trying to run a non-selfbootable disk. Either use a tool to make your game selfbootable or use the Utopia boot disk.
4: You have selected the wrong drive from the drive configuration of the emulator. Run the emulator, go to "Options"->"Configure Drive" and select the drive where the game is.
Q: Can I use the Utopia boot disk to run non-selfbootable disks?
A: It seems that you can use the Utopia boot disk with the latest Chankast version but it may not work for some people.
Q: I can't run some Capcom games, why?
A: Be sure to select the 'use capcom hack' option in the menu when you want to play games made by Capcom.
Q: Can I run any homebrew games with Chankast?
A: Yes, but you have to make them selfbootable before that. For more info visit this thread.
1: It may be possible to run some non-selfbootable commercial games that way.
2: This method does not work for all games!
Q: Every time I try to run Chankast the bios asks me to configure the date and time, then restarts when I choose "play", then asks me to set the date and time again and then restarts when I choose "play" without stopping, is there a way to fix this?
A: Each time you change any bios settings, Chankast modifies the bios files. It seems that the emulator has a bug that makes it corrupt the bios and as a result you may have this problem. So in order to fix this problem you have to replace the two modified bios files inside the chankast directory (dc_bios.bin and dc_flash.bin) with bios files that were not used by the emulator.
Q: Every time I try to run a game the bios keeps restarting itself right after the "Dreamcast" logo, how do I fix this?
A: You have to use the Europian bios in order to fix this problem. The Europian bios shows a blue swirl when it boots but the US-Japanese show a red swirl.
Q: I can't save my progress on any game. It says that there is no memory card or that the memory card does not have enough free blocks even though it's full. Why?
A: You have to create a memory card from the plugins configuration of the emulator; then run the emulator without a CD in the (virtual) drive and from the options screen that will show up choose the memory card icon and then choose the memory card and format it (fully erase it).
Q: Is it possible to change any BIOS settings such as the language, the time, the date, etc?
A: It is possible to change most of the BIOS settings (ie:language) but it is not possible to change the time and date settings. That's because Chankast does not emulate the Dreamcast clock.
1: Before starting the emulator in order to change any settings make sure that the "dc_bios.bin" and "dc_flash.bin" files do not have read-only attributes or the changes will not be saved.
2: Attempting to change the time and date options may result in corrupted "dc_bios.bin" and "dc_flash.bin" files.
Q: I still don't understand how to make this thing work, What can I do?
A: You can use the configuration tutorial from the official Chanka site.
Q: Is there a way to make a game run faster?
A: There are various ways to increase the speed of the emulator. Try to overclock or underclock the Dreamcast CPU by pressing "+" or "-" on your keyboard (the results depend on your system). You can also try to enable the 'use capcom hack' option in the menu to gain some speed on some games.
Your video card can also affect speed so it would be better to use low resolutions as well as antialiasing and filtering values if you have a low-end video card. Running the emulator in Fullscreen mode might also increase speed.
Q: Why does Chankast run slow on my fast CPU? I've seen people with slower CPUs getting it to run much faster.
A: Due to the way that Chankast is optimized it seems to run faster on Athlon XP CPUs with a Barton core and Athlon 64 CPUs. If you have another CPU Chankast will probably run slower.
Q: Some games are running too fast! Is there a way to make them run slower?
A: Yes! To make the games run at 60fps (which is their normal speed) do the following:
Right click to your desktop and click "properties". This will open the Display Properties. From there click the "settings" tab and then click "advanced". This will open a new window. From there choose the "Monitor" tab, set the "monitor refresh rate" to 60 Hertz and then click "Apply".
1: If you have ever changed the settings of your video card drivers you may also need to enable the "wait for Vertical Sync" option from the drivers configuration of your video card.
2: This works only in Fullscreen mode.
Q: I can't hear any music tracks in some games. Why?
A: That's because Chankast does not support CDDA tracks yet so any game that has CDDA music tracks will be missing the specific music tracks when running on Chankast.
Q: Every game I try to run has various GFX errors. I've seen other people running the specific game without any GFX errors. What's wrong?
A: Updating your video card drivers will probably fix this problem.
If this doesn't fix the problem then your video card is quite old and does not have some features that are required by the emulator. In that case you have to buy a more decent video card.
1: Some games have GFX problems only with specific video cards.
2: Some games may look better is you enable the "ZWrite", "AlphaTest ZWrite" and "Capcom Hack" options of the emulator.
3: Some games may look better on Chankast v0.2a with the old GFX core.
Q: While I'm playing some games on Chankast I encounter various sound problems (missing sounds, sounds and music stopping randomly, sounds that keep playing forever, etc.). Is there a way to fix them?
A: No. These are known problems with many games. You may want to turn your speakers off for these games.
Q: I don't like the input (control) or CD-ROM plugin. Can I use another one?
A: Yes! You can change the input or CD-ROM plugin from the plugins configuration of the emulator.
Q: Why "NAME OF THE GAME" doesn't work, crashes, has GFX problems, or it is slow with my 10Ghz CPU and GeForce SMFX ultra super turbo?
A: The emulator itself is still in an ALPHA development stage which means that it is not as fast as it can be, it has bugs and some dreamcast parts are not fully emulated yet, that's why you may experience one or more of these problems. For a list of the compatible games you can visit this thread.
IMPORTANT NOTE: You may be able to run some "not playable games" (like Virtual On) if you overclock the Dreamcast CPU (set it to 120 or higher).
Q: I am trying to run a game that is supported by the emulator but it freezes after the intro! What can I do?
A: There is a known problem with the emulator and some games that were ripped by the group "echelon". These games won't work.
Q: I've "got" a game but when I decompress it I get a bunch of files with numbers at the end of their names! What are these and how am I supposed to make them run on Chankast?
A: These are ISO images that were splitted into multiple compressed files. You can decompress them by using a program like Winrar and decompressing the file that has the smallest number at its end (or the extension of a compressed archive). After that, the ISO image of the game will be extracted by the archive and you will be able to mount it using a virtual drive or burn it to a blank CD-R (W).
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you get an error when you try to decompress the game then the compressed archive is probably corrupted or fake. In that case you'll have to get the game from somewhere else...
Q: Is Chankast dead? When is the next version going to be released? Will it support the "xyz" feature or the "xyz" game?
A: Questions of this kind are annoying and do not lead anywhere so please don't ask.
Q: Where can I get the bios files ("dc_bios.bin" and "dc_flash.bin"), or the games (ISOs)?
A: Asking for this material is strictly forbidden and you'll be banned if you do. For more info visit this thread.
Hint: You can use a search engine (like google) to find them or find out how you can dump your own games and BIOS.
LAST NOTE: As said before, this emulator is still in an ALPHA development stage, so there may be various problems depending on the configuration of each computer and some users may experience problems while others don't. Closing any unnecessary applications (especially if they mess up with hardware parts like the CD-ROM, video card or sound card) may help you make it work and even make it faster. In case you cannot make it work whatever you do, you may have to wait for a more stable release. Understood? Got it? Capito?
If you still have questions not answered in this thread, feel free to post them, so that the moderators and the other members can help you.
Read the sticky Threads and use the Search function before asking for help.
When asking for help make sure to post your System Specs (Operating System, Video Card, Chipset of your Motherboard, etc.) or you will probably not get any kind of help.