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Author Topic: Run the game without installing?  (Read 5972 times)
bloodredtoe
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Run the game without installing?
« on: 2008 November 26, 16:31:54 »
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I've managed to screw my system because of SP3 and I will have to reinstall.
Since the game is on like 20 disks + extra work patching, hacking (begone evil SecuROM!) it and adding essential fixes, I'm wondering whether it's possible to just copy the files and add necessary registry entries for it to work.

I sucessfully played the Sims 1 like that, but I know some games and programs just bork.

Has anyone tried to skip the installation? Did it work?
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nekonoai
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #1 on: 2008 November 26, 17:27:18 »
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Sorry, no shortcuts.
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bloodredtoe
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #2 on: 2008 November 26, 18:56:03 »
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Sorry, no shortcuts.

That means "no" because you have tested it?
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seelindarun
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #3 on: 2008 November 26, 21:23:41 »
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It means no, because nekonoai understands a little something about installers and executables, which you apparently don't.

However, if you doubt the authority of those who bother to post to your thread, why not test it yourself?
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bloodredtoe
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #4 on: 2008 November 26, 22:47:50 »
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However, if you doubt the authority of those who bother to post to your thread, why not test it yourself?

Easy, man. I'm just asking if anyone has tested it already.
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Zazazu
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #5 on: 2008 November 27, 04:59:42 »
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The game has to make changes in files other than just C:/Program Flies/EA Games/Etc. to run. Hence, it can't and could never run without being installed on your PC. Besides, how would you actually put those 20 CDs in at the same time?
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bloodredtoe
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #6 on: 2008 November 27, 07:41:58 »
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The game has to make changes in files other than just C:/Program Flies/EA Games/Etc. to run.
Oh, that would explain why your computer slows down after having installed it... But seriously - does each and every EP and SP does that? Reducting installation to just half would be a  great relief...

Besides, how would you actually put those 20 CDs in at the same time?
Not at the same time - one after another. (Oh, well, forgot about one extra where I keep patches, bless dad for extra drive).
And like half of them are actually DVDs. This is a huge game...
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Argon
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #7 on: 2008 November 27, 08:19:02 »
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The game has to make changes in files other than just C:/Program Flies/EA Games/Etc. to run. Hence, it can't and could never run without being installed on your PC. Besides, how would you actually put those 20 CDs in at the same time?

Eh? I read it as "If I copy the files to the hard drive and add the registry entries, will it run?" The answer for that is yes, but it'd be pointless and more of a pain in the butt to do manually. Unless of course you want to just simplify your re-install process. All you really need (with a nocd crack) is the "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\EA GAMES\The Sims 2 Whatever" keys.
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #8 on: 2008 November 27, 08:22:06 »
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Oh please, surely you don't seriously imagine that manually copying the contents of 20 CDs and then manually editing hundreds of lines of registry is likely to be quicker and less hassle than a conventional install?

*nods @ Argon who posted while I was typing.
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bloodredtoe
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #9 on: 2008 November 27, 09:34:12 »
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Oh please, surely you don't seriously imagine that manually copying the contents of 20 CDs and then manually editing hundreds of lines of registry is likely to be quicker and less hassle than a conventional install?

By "copy the files" I meant the game files I currently have on my HD. Oh, man, I must've sounded like a retard if you thought I wanted to copy raw contents of the disks...
And there aren't many registry entries for the game. Like three groups at most. And you extract a group as a whole.

Installing from the disks takes a few hours. Adding previously extracted registry entries and moving files from one partition to another is a few minutes.
But question is if anyone has tried that for the Sims 2? I know programs that will not work if treated this way (possibly they store some files outside the game folder or modify system files), that's why I ask. Of course, I can test myself in the end, but for such a huge game I thought it to be likely that someone has tried it before.
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talysman
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #10 on: 2008 November 27, 09:49:19 »
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Oh please, surely you don't seriously imagine that manually copying the contents of 20 CDs and then manually editing hundreds of lines of registry is likely to be quicker and less hassle than a conventional install?

*nods @ Argon who posted while I was typing.
Don't edit the registry keys.

Copy to another partition, do your XP reinstall, then copy TS2 back to the same directory structure and re-add the keys. Should work. But no, I haven't tested it, though I've wanted to find out for a while. Let's say you be the guinea pig.

ETA: I'm quoting Mirelly's comment for context, but by "you", I mean the OP.
« Last Edit: 2008 November 27, 10:08:42 by talysman » Logged
J. M. Pescado
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #11 on: 2008 November 27, 10:21:01 »
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That doesn't work. TS2 installs really stupidly, so instead of storing all its registry crap under a sensible single tree, it craps all over the place in incomprehensible hexgibberish.
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bloodredtoe
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #12 on: 2008 November 27, 18:59:46 »
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That doesn't work. TS2 installs really stupidly, so instead of storing all its registry crap under a sensible single tree, it craps all over the place in incomprehensible hexgibberish.

I think the entries are under EA Games and Electronic Arts. At least it looks so when you take a look through the registry.
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Simsample
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #13 on: 2008 November 27, 19:30:28 »
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Yes, there are keys:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ EA Games
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ Electronic Arts\ EA Games
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ Microsoft\ Windows\ Current Version\ Uninstall
You'd need to extract all of those from your current install, and then install to the same location to make them work on a new install. I'm not sure if there are any more entries lurking anywhere, or if the keys are different in Vista.
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SiuPang
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #14 on: 2008 December 03, 07:54:38 »
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I've managed to screw my system because of SP3 and I will have to reinstall.
Since the game is on like 20 disks + extra work patching, hacking (begone evil SecuROM!) it and adding essential fixes, I'm wondering whether it's possible to just copy the files and add necessary registry entries for it to work.

I sucessfully played the Sims 1 like that, but I know some games and programs just bork.

Has anyone tried to skip the installation? Did it work?

I tried that before... Even if you have backed-up all the necessary registry key and you have put them all back in places, the game still WON'T run. Not sure why.
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Lord Darcy
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #15 on: 2008 December 03, 11:19:10 »
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I used to do the same thing as OP in TS1 days. I always installed TS1 to my data partition, not the program partition, so all installed game files were intact even after formatting and reinstalling Windows. With the single execution of the exported reg file, the game is magically reinstalled again... how sweet.

I was severely disappointed to find that this trick no longer works in TS2. Tried and failed. I had to manually delete all added entries. I was not sure whether it's inherently impossible in TS2, or I missed to export all needed registry entries.
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Jaedle
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #16 on: 2008 December 03, 12:10:30 »
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I am one of those neurotic people who tries to keep a nice cleaned up registry. To make that easier, I use Revo Uninstaller to rid myself of all those weird leftover examples of hexgibberish whenever I uninstall anything, but there are other programs which do the same thing. I have noticed when uninstalling programs with Revo that it often finds keys I would never have located myself. If you missed any keys you could probably find them by using one of those programs, but Revo forces the user to uninstall with the program's own uninstaller before it performs deeper searches for leftover material in the registry. For that reason, you can't use Revo to find them without actually doing an uninstall. Unfortunately, I do not know if any similar programs can show you those without performing an actual uninstall. It might be worth looking for one. You may be able to find some keys you missed exporting.
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Alexx
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Re: Run the game without installing?
« Reply #17 on: 2008 December 06, 01:55:13 »
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Yes, there are keys:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ EA Games
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ Electronic Arts\ EA Games
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ Microsoft\ Windows\ Current Version\ Uninstall
You'd need to extract all of those from your current install, and then install to the same location to make them work on a new install. I'm not sure if there are any more entries lurking anywhere, or if the keys are different in Vista.
Yes,two more registry entries needed:
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\EA GAMES]
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths]
Then all goes without any problems.But if you install(add) some new EP or SP you need to export all 5 registry entries again according to changes
I keep my "open"game install on 3 DVD and reinstall it on fresh system(after system crash as usual) really can save time and nerves. Smiley
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