VICE (which stands for Versatile Commodore Emulator) is a cross-platform emulator for Commodore’s 8-bit computers, more precisely C64, C128, VIC20, PET models (except the SuperPET 9000), as well as PLUS4 and the CBM-II (C610).
It is available for Commodore devices running on Amiga, Unix, MS-DOS, Win32, Mac OS X, OS/2, Acorn RISC OS, QNX QNX, GP2X GP2X, Dingoo Dingoo A320, Syllable Syllable OS, and BeOS host machines.
The tool also comes with support for digital joysticks that can be used via a parallel port driver and performs hardware SID playback with a CatWeasel PCI card.
The advantages of being portable
VICE comes wrapped up in a portable package which can be deployed on your system by simply running the executable files. Each emulator can be run independently without having to go through an installation process, and they have the same user interface, configuration settings and file formats.
You can get rid of the tool by deleting the files that you have downloaded from the Internet. It is important to mention that no entries are recorded in your Windows registry, and you may copy it on any USB flash drive or other devices.
Working with the emulators
You are given the possibility to automatically start the disk/tape image, attach or detach the disk image, control datasette (e.g. stop, start, forward, rewind, record), attach or detach the cartridge image, reset data, and perform basic edit tasks (copy, paste).
VICE allows you to load and save snapshots, start/recording and playback history, overwrite playback, record sound to a file, and stop the audio recording process.
What’s more, you may enable the automatic refresh rate mode, set up the maximum speed, activate the full screen, make the main window remain on top of other programs, enable video cache, and swap joysticks.
Wide range of configuration parameters
There’s support for a comprehensive suite of configuration settings that are related to autostart, video, peripheral, drive, datasette, joystick, userport joystick, keyboard, mouse, sound, SID, ROM, RAM, and cartridge/IO. You can make the utility save the settings upon exit and export the configuration data to a file on your computer so you can easily restore it.
An overall reliable, smart and powerful emulator
All in all, VICE integrates an advanced feature pack for helping you emulate Commodore’s 8-bit computers, and is suitable especially for professionals. It emulates chip timings efficiently and provides an accurate 6502/6510 emulator.