as emulation (of lat. aemulari copy) in the computer engineering the functional copying of a system by another one designates. The copying system receives the same data, implements the same programs and obtains the same results as thatoriginal system. An emulator is a system, which copies another. To differentiate are hardware and software emulators.

A hardware emulator is electronic equipment, which can copy a microprocessor (CCU) functionally, electrically and mechanically (housings and pin). The connection to the processor building groupby means of bases and suitable plug one provides. It is called also in circuit emulator (ICE).

Example 1: A terminal emulated for the PC a host/a Mainframe, is thus addressed over special terminal emulation. Opposite the host/ Mainframe it emulates Terminal over a DTC (digital terminal CONTROLLER) and a MDP (multiple digitally haven).

A virtual machine is often falsely called emulation. In the foreground it stands however that the entire hardware thus, CCU, RAM etc. anotherSystem (host computer) one copies virtually and as accurately as possible. Each virtual machine possesses thereby its own virtual hardware and runs independently of the other machines.


A terminal emulation permits the interaction with text-oriented programs, which run on a distant computer, over an external interface, usually a serial line or a modem connection. Terminal emulations were programmed, around the behavior one „stupid “terminals, thus a simple data viewand input device to copy. Terminal emulations exist also for computers with graphic surface.

Table of contents

ranges of application

emulators for different purposes are used:

  • Investment protection: Software, which was developed for older systems, can run on modern systems further.
    • Example: on a Linux -/Apple -/Amiga - computer becomesby means of Bochs, QEMU, VMware and/or. VirtualPC a PC emulates, on which Windows can be installed. Most Windows software bought so far can be used further.
    • The open SOURCE project Wine against it emulates only the interfaces that of Windows operating system for application.
  • Software development:
    • Itis possible to develop and test software for other systems.
      • Example: Programs, which are developed for Palm OS on a PC, can be tested with an Palm emulator.
    • It is possible to test an operating system.
      • Example: The emulator „Bochs “offersan Debug interface on. Hereby one can examine (or for training purposes to observe), wie/ob somewhat functioned.
  • Training: An emulator permits it to train itself into systems whose acquisition would be otherwise very aufwändig.
  • To the long-term archiving of digital objects the emulation places an alternative to the migration and/or. Conversion (see also electronic archiving).
  • Spare time/hobby: Old console plays from the early eighties can owing to suitable emulators howz. B. MEASURING on modern hardware run.
  • Ergonomics: Software, which runs normally only on systems with unergonomischen in/expenditure fishbones (process card displays), can on systems with comfortable screens run.
    • Example: The image replication with Game Boy emulators on a PC is better than with a materialGame Boy.

See also: Simulator, Bochs, DOS box, MEASURING, PearPC, QEMU

acquaintance hardware emulators

  • HP terminal
  • Memorex telex terminal
  • JANUS (Atari Hardwareemulator for the PC of 1995)

acquaintance software emulators

work on] for it, however no emulators

the following software is falsely often regarded as emulation software:

  • VMware and VirtualPC (the version for MicrosoftWindows of systems) - do not rank among the emulators, since it does not act here around Virtualisierung, emulation, of systems and neither soft nor hardware are emulated. Rather the hardware virtualisiert
  • WINE (W INE I s N ot on To E mulator) - like the name, no emulator already says
  • LINE - like WINE no emulator
  • Xen - also no emulator, but a monitoring program, that is here for the sake of completeness specifiedif E/OS
  • Mac on Linux
  • , ShapeShifter , Plex86 SCO
  • UNIX ScummVM
  • [
work on] becomes

emulated systems

emulators exists for nearly each system, so z. B. for:

allemulated systems to call the framework would blow up here.

Lately emulators play an important role also in the Freeware - scene. Thus for instance the GameBoy Advance offers those by its relatively simple programming language (a simplified version of C)Possibility of programming plays and applications which are then used on an emulator.

For the user, the emulators z. B. to implementing old, commercial computer - and video games it begins, is problematic that these also then still under the protectioncopyright stand, if there are not to buy it for several years no more.

Opposite the genuine, original hardware play console emulators possess some advantages. In addition count the exzellente image quality, the digitally processed and thus lossless receptible clay/tone. Further one, the user friendliness thatactual systems extending aspects are z. B. improving the video expenditure (z. B. Soft drawing and filters of diagrams with consoles such as super Nintendo or Playstation, although these systems never supported these techniques, let alone to compute would know) or a usingfrom Savestates to fast memory and loading of Spielständen - at any time at the run time of the play.


of Rome

software of older computer systems, particularly the play consoles, is available frequently only in the form of ROM - components. ThereRome relatively simply to select, work emulators leave themselves usually problem-free with Rome files so mentioned (or also ROM image), which are present in different file formats.

Unpacked refer different file endings to certain Rome formats, for example:

  • .nes - Nintendo Entertaiment system
  • .smc- Super Nintendo Entertaiment system
  • .nds - Nintendo DS, DS Lite
  • .bin - image standard CD, about a Playstation
  • .crt - C64 cartridge image, Rome contents of a plug-in module for the expansion haven
  • .gb .gbc .gba - Gameboy, Gameboy Color & Gameboy of a Advance
  • .z64 .v64 .n64 - Nintendo 64
  • .smd - Sega genesis/megadrive image
  • .a26 - Atari 2600 plug-in module
  • .a78 - Atari 7800 plug-in module

image of data media

something similar behaves it with copies of software, those on volumesor disks were delivered. Tape are images also here and/or. Disk image for the use with an emulator spreads.

some emulators can read also genuine tones in of cartridges as.wav file.


the most well-known emulator and alsoDistance most popular, is MAME. Mame stands for „multiple Arcade Machine emulator “and emulates in the current version over 2.500 Arcade automats (without clones and not functioning plays).

A problem is however that not all Rome are copyright-free and still commerciallyare used. The MAME open SOURCE project takes up therefore no Rome, which are younger than 2 years not to also endanger in order new developments. Whereby that does not exclude that alternative MAME versions do that now and then - with more or less success. Newer one,only few months old of Rome force usually each PC into the knees and are only unsatisfactorily emulated.

Older one like Pacman, Mr. DO, Popeye and Polyplay (the only Arcade automat of the GDR) run however as on the original automat, thatonly which is missing is the classical Münzeinwurf. There are however reproductions in the housing of a normal automat, which contains a PC, on which MAME runs and to which explicitly to the hardware of the automat one adapted.

The scene of the emulation fans is muchlargely, maintains many forums and represents a large competition grows to the commercial PC play sector. Within these also the translation scene formed, itself Japanese/English with translating of Japanese NINT DO and Sega Rome in English predominantly busily or inGerman, since the plays were never located by the manufacturers themselves for the German market.

One of the few well-known sides exclusively with legal Rome are occupied is PDRoms. There all possible homebrew - plays and - demos become since 1998for different systems gathered. Up-to-date this side over 2000 files in over 20 categories accommodates.

see also

Web on the left of


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