[FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

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[FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

1) MOD enabler
First of, what is a MOD enabler? A MOD enabler is a tool for enabling and disabling mods, i.e. the tool handles the copying of files to the correct folders and then remove them again at the end users command.
A perfect tool for this is "The Generic Mod Enabler" by JoneSoft and you can download it absolutely free of charge from the official homepage. I will be using this tool for the rest of the guide and have been using it for handling MODS for games like rFactor, Silent Hunter 3 & 4, Panzer Campaigns, EEAH/EECH and Combat Mission.
Here are my personal notes and should be taken as that:
  • Before starting using a tool like JGSME then make sure you have a clean install of the game, since you want to return to that state sometime in the future
  • If a patch is released for the game, REMEMBER to de-activate ALL MODS's BEFORE applying the patch. I keep forgetting this and therefore there can be some mismatch between files when deactivating a MOD. But please try to remember this.... The solution to this is re-install....
  • JGSME doesn't use some sort of compression like the LOMAN MOD manager, and therefore will an activated MOD files be in the MOD folder, in the game folder and the original files (if overwriting something) in the backup folder. This can be an issue for very big MOD's and low disk space. But again, nothing that have giving me troubles.
  • If your dream MOD doesn't comply to the simple structure of a JSGME MOD, then its very easy to do it yourself (read on). I do this all the time since I don't want to mix it up and I want full control


2) Installing and initialising of JSGME
  • Download the latest version of JSGME from the official homepage from the link above
  • Run the "jsgme_setup.exe" and install JSGME to your Kharkov folder:
    Image
    Image
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  • Start JSGME from the desktop icon (if you selected that option when installing) or browse to your Kharkov folder and double click on the JSGME.EXE. After JSGME starts, click the "Tasks->Generate snapshot of game files.". This make a .txt file with some info about your clean version of Kharkov and can help you when you want to clean up your Kharkov installation.
    Image
    Image
  • Close down JSGME
  • If you open your Kharkov folder the JSGME installer has made the following:
    Image
  • And in the MODS folder (NB! Only the JSGME.ini will be visible if you aren't showing hidden files):
    Image
  • We are now ready to use JSGME.

3) Adding MOD's and enable/disable them
  • First we need one or more MOD's that made for JSGME (way more simple than it sounds, more of that later). If you don't have any you can try this one: Stridor_Sound_MODS_JSGME.zip which I will use as an example.
  • Download the MOD and open the zip/rar file with your chosen unpacker, I normally use WinRAR.
  • The above file looks like this when opened:
    Image
  • Extract the files to your recently added MODS folder in your Kharkov directory (It is VERY IMPORTANT that your unpacker create sub folders!!!!):
    Image
  • Open your MODS folder in the Kharkov directory and make sure your MOD's is installed correctly:
    Image
  • Start JSGME and you can see your newly installed MOD's, ready for activating:
    Image
  • Select the MOD you want to activate by clicking its name and then click the ">" button to activate the MOD:
    Image
  • If you want to disable a MOD, you select it from the right side "Activated Mods:" and click the "<" button to deactivate the MOD again
  • You are now ready for playing Kharkov. Enjoy yourself.


4) How to create MOD's for JSGME
Creating a MOD is way beyond this guide, but how to make it JSGME ready will be covered next.

The most important thing when creating a MOD for JSGME is the folder structure. The JSGME MOD has to have the EXACTLY same folder structure from the root of the Kharkov folder to where the changed files are located. This is best explained with an example:

The sounds for Kharkov are located in the following folder:
Image
And I want to make a MOD that changes the "click" sound played when I select something in-game. The sound played is the "MM click.wav". I change the sound file in some kind of editor and have the changed file on my desktop. Let's make it a JSGME MOD. This is easiest done by going to the MODS folder in the root of Kharkov and making a new folder. The name given here will be the name users of your mod will see when using JSGME, so please give the folder a saying name. And if your MOD is one that will have many changes over time then please consider adding a version number to the folder name.
I will call mine "More subtle click sound (Cougar_DK)":
Image

Now comes the most important part of this.... Since the newly created folder is at the same level as the root folder of your Kharkov game you will have to manually create the full path down to where your MOD's file(s) will be located. Since my MOD is a sound MOD I will have to create the following folders:

Image
Image

Now I can copy my MOD file into the newly created folder structure:
Image

The MOD are now ready for testing, so I start JSGME up:
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And activate my MOD:
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I know the above is a simple example, but a MOD that changes files in different folders and adding new content is as simple to do. And the best part is that when testing your own MOD you can activate/deactivate it to make sure it works as it should before releasing it. Its pretty easy to spot a misplaced folder when done this way.

It is possible to add a tooltip for your MOD by placing a simple text file with the .jsgme extension at the root of your MOD. The text can max be 255 characters long and will be shown when the mouse cursor hovers over your MOD in the JSGME main window. (I will make an example of this later)

5) Deploying a MOD
The easiest way is to pack the MOD with zip or rar before uploading it or mailing it to friends. So go to the MODS folder of Kharkov and since I use WinRar its integrated in my right click menu:
Image

I select zip and makes sure that WinRar doesn't touch the paths to the file(s):
Image

And the packed MOD is now ready to share:
Image


6 Conflicting MOD's
Sometimes a MOD will change file(s) already changed by another MOD. Since this normally can cause trouble this is a more advanced topic but nothing to be afraid of since JSGME can help you.
Lets take an example. This is my downloaded MOD's from my MODS folder:
Image

Matrix released the beta 1.1b patch as a ZIP file and therefore is pretty easy to use as a MOD since you make the folder in the MODS folder and unpack it there.

I enable the MOD:
Image
Image

Next I try to enable the "Silo Fix - L3B map", an unofficial workaround by Mraah:
Image

And the following window appears, telling me that there is a conflict between these two MOD's:
Image

A normal user should stop here and contact the MOD creators and hope they somehow can merge their MOD's. If you can't wait and want to see what happens when activating the MOD you can do this, perfectly safe.

First lets see what JSGME does when enabling a MOD. This picture shows the file "map.bmp" in the folder "Media\KHARKOV_L3B" has been changed by the MOD called "PCKv101bBetaPatchFiles":
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So now I try to enable the "Silo Fix - L3B map" and answer Yes to activating it:
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Now see what happened behind the scene:
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JSGME now know that there are two MOD's that have modified the "map.bmp" file and it even know there is a critical relation between them. So if I try to remove the "PCKv101bBetaPatchFiles" MOD the following happens:
Image

And I get the following error message:
Image

So JSGME helps you track the MOD's and you can perfectly safe, play around with the MOD's.


7 "Housekeeping" the MOD's
This will be covered at a later time.
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EagleMountainDK
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

Its my hope with this guide that 1) people making MOD's will release the MOD's in this format and 2) that us gamers uses more time playing than handling files.
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Stridor
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Stridor »

Cougar,

Many thanks for doing this. It is going to be very helpfull for the mods I hope will soon follow [;)]
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Erik Rutins
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Erik Rutins »

Thanks, Cougar. Great job!
Erik Rutins
CEO, Matrix Games LLC


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For official support, please use our Help Desk: http://www.matrixgames.com/helpdesk/

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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by junk2drive »

Thanks from me too. I didn't know about the folder in the folder routine. This will help me use JSGME with other games now.
Conflict of Heroes "Most games are like checkers or chess and some have dice and cards involved too. This game plays like checkers but you think like chess and the dice and cards can change everything in real time."
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by junk2drive »

After installing JSGME in my PCK folder and reading the Help file, I now see that the folder instructions are there, I just didn't get it.
&nbsp;
Thanks for a well done tutorial.
Conflict of Heroes "Most games are like checkers or chess and some have dice and cards involved too. This game plays like checkers but you think like chess and the dice and cards can change everything in real time."
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

Thanks for the kind words!&nbsp;
Mraah
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Mraah »



Excellent Tutorial Cougar!!!

I think if this tutorial isn't in the Maxtrix front folder then it should be!!!

Erik, you listening?? We know you are [;)].

Rob
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

I have written part 6 of the MOD guide called: "6 Conflicting MOD's". Hope its usefull for some of you. The next part will be about "housekeeping"....[:D]
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by JudgeDredd »

Big thank you Cougar...great tutorial on how to use this great mod tool.
Alba gu' brath
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himmelstoss
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by himmelstoss »

sweet awesomness!!

this game gets more and more fun! who needs "Theatre of War" anymore.

thx Courgar!!

himmel
tell it like you think it is!

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Mad Russian
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Mad Russian »

I just downloaded this and it doesn't make any folders in the MODS folder.&nbsp; See your #3 above....

No !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS folders.

Should I make them or what?


Good Hunting.

MR
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Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by himmelstoss »

ORIGINAL: Mad Russian

I just downloaded this and it doesn't make any folders in the MODS folder. See your #3 above....

No !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS folders.

Should I make them or what?


Good Hunting.

MR


hey mad,

what you do is when ever you get a new mod downloaded you just put it into the MOds folder under PCK. Than it will automatically show up in the enabler and all you got to do than is to enable it in there (switch it to enabler side)- thats all.

hope i made sense,

himmel
tell it like you think it is!

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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

ORIGINAL: Mad Russian

I just downloaded this and it doesn't make any folders in the MODS folder. See your #3 above....

No !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS folders.

Should I make them or what?


Good Hunting.

MR

Hi MR, I'm sure you missed this step: "Start JSGME from the desktop icon (if you selected that option when installing) or browse to your Kharkov folder and double click on the JSGME.EXE. After JSGME starts, click the "Tasks->Generate snapshot of game files.". This make a .txt file with some info about your clean version of Kharkov and can help you when you want to clean up your Kharkov installation."

If you do this, JSGME should make the MODS folder.

Hope this helps
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Mad Russian
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Mad Russian »

Guys,

It makes the MODS folder but not the !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS sub-folders that you show in your screenshots. I used your tutorial step by step till I got to that point where I don't have those sub-folders.

I'll just go play with it and see what happens.

Thanks for you quick response.

Good Hunting.

MR
The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.
Mraah
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Mraah »

ORIGINAL: Mad Russian

It makes the MODS folder but not the !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS sub-folders that you show in your screenshots. I used your tutorial step by step till I got to that point where I don't have those sub-folders.

MR,

Once you start activating and deactivating mods it should make those two folders ... !BACKUP and !INSTLOGS.
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Mad Russian
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Mad Russian »

ORIGINAL: Mraah

ORIGINAL: Mad Russian

It makes the MODS folder but not the !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS sub-folders that you show in your screenshots. I used your tutorial step by step till I got to that point where I don't have those sub-folders.

MR,

Once you start activating and deactivating mods it should make those two folders ... !BACKUP and !INSTLOGS.

Ok, when I was following along in your tutorial you showed them in the picture and said it was extremely important that it make all the folders and sub-folders so I thought the Enabler was skipping a step with my installation. I'll play with it some tonight if I get a chance.

Thanks for the help. It's greatly appreciated.

Good Hunting.

MR
The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

ORIGINAL: Mad Russian

ORIGINAL: Mraah

ORIGINAL: Mad Russian

It makes the MODS folder but not the !BACKUP or !INSTLOGS sub-folders that you show in your screenshots. I used your tutorial step by step till I got to that point where I don't have those sub-folders.

MR,

Once you start activating and deactivating mods it should make those two folders ... !BACKUP and !INSTLOGS.

Ok, when I was following along in your tutorial you showed them in the picture and said it was extremely important that it make all the folders and sub-folders so I thought the Enabler was skipping a step with my installation. I'll play with it some tonight if I get a chance.

Thanks for the help. It's greatly appreciated.

Good Hunting.

MR

Hi MR, if you take a look at this picture they folder icons is dimmed, I'm pretty sure its because they are hidden and I have chosen to show hidden files and folders.
Image

I will check it out when I get home and update the guide. Thanks for the feedback!
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EagleMountainDK
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by EagleMountainDK »

The !BACKUP and !INSTLOGS folders is indeed marked as hidden. I have updated the guide.

Thanks MR! [:)]
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Mad Russian
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RE: [FAQ] JSGME MOD Enabler

Post by Mad Russian »

ORIGINAL: Cougar_DK

The !BACKUP and !INSTLOGS folders is indeed marked as hidden. I have updated the guide.

Thanks MR! [:)]

ROFL!!!!!!!!!

Thanks MR for what? [:-]

You guys are doing all the work here!

THANK YOU! [&o]

Good Hunting.

MR
The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.
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