Tested: BETOP controller with Fedora 25, and openSUSE 42.2/FreeBSD 11 on VirtualBox  Part 1

According to a Beijing gamer, BETOP has been manufacturing gaming controllers for more than 15 years in Asia and their products are well-supported and reliable on multiple types of hardware. As it turned out, the BETOP-2175, a wired XBOX360 controller that retails for $15.00 (99 RMB),works very well with emulators for Linux, even when running over VirtualBox.


The BTP-2175 used with an SNES game emulator on Fedora 25 Gnome 3.

Note: Although I'm not a gamer, I was impressed with the BETOP-2175 while testing it with Android, Linux, and FreeBSD emulators. In many ways, the BTP-2175's build quality was superior to any of the overpriced accessories from Belkin and Logitech. Although BETOP manufactures Bluetooth-enabled controllers, I opted for an older wired model as a matter of preference, and because I'm not interested in any type of gaming. BETOP controllers are available from Amazon Japan, China, and US, and retail stores in Asia.

This series of articles provide an overview of using the BTP-2175 on Fedora 25 Gnome 3 and guests on VirtualBox, specifically FreeBSD and openSUSE 42.2.

Note: Although emulators and websites providing ROMs have been around more than a decade now, the legality of playing ROMs is a gray area, though setting up emulators isn't much of an issue from a software licensing standpoint.

DTP-2175, Fedora 25 Gnome 3, and retro gaming emulators


Although the standard repositories of Fedora restrict software for game emulators, you can set up RPM Fusion to configure game emulators. This article uses Fedora 25 Gnome 3 on an Acer ES-11, Gens/GS version 7, and Snes9x-gtk 1.54.1. Controller performance was tested with Castlevania: Dracula X (1995) for Super Famicom and Castelevania: Bloodlines (1994) for Sega Genesis.

To set up Snes9x-gtk and the BTP-2175 on Fedora 25:

1. After setting up the RPM Fusion repository, install the snes9x-gtk software package using dnf or Software Management.

Note: You can also install a standalone Snes9x software package without GTK support.

2. Connect the BETOP controller to the USB port.

3. Launch Snes9x-gtk and click Options > Preferences > Joypads to map the controller buttons.

Configure the controls by clicking once with the mouse on an item, and then pressing the corresponding physical button on the controller.



If the BETOP controller isn't detected, press and hold the BETOP button at the middle of the controller until the LED lights change modes. The LED mode lights change depending on what type of device you connect the BETOP controller to. The first two LED lights (P and X) are lit for PC. Unless you plan to use the controller for other devices such as an XBOX, you only need to perform the step once.

If the controller is still not detected, disconnect the controller and then reconnect to a different USB port.

Note: On the Acer ES-11 with Fedora 25, I had to connect to the USB 3.x port in the rear rather than the USB 2.x port on one side of the laptop.

The controller has four modes. When using the controller as an XBOX controller on Linux, set the mode to P-X by pressing the BETOP button between the Back and Start buttons.

Note: I'm aware that serious gamers are more particular about controller responsiveness than casual, aged users like myself. If the performance of the BETOP controller is inadequate, then there is a userspace XBOX360 controller driver available on GitHub. Note, however, that you don't need to install this driver to get the BTP-2175 working on Fedora.

4. Load a supported ROM by clicking File > Open ROM image.

5.  If needed, configure the control Options if available.

Since the BETOP controller has the same number of buttons as an XBOX controller and different labels, configure the Options before playing.

Snes-9x is a mature emulator so it's no surprise that the playing experience of Castlevania: Dracula X was excellent. In comparison to the Android emulator Happy Chick, graphics and control responsiveness were clearly better. Jumping and movement with the BTP-2175 on the Linux machine were better than on the Kindle Fire HD8 with USB OTG. Veteran players will clearly notice the difference in playing experience.


To set up Gens/GS and the BTP-2175 on Fedora 25:

1. After setting up the RPM Fusion repository, install the gnes-s software package using dnf or Software Management.

2. Connect the BETOP controller to the USB port.

3. Launch Gens/GS and click Options > Joypads to map controller buttons.

Once you configure all the buttons, click Apply and then Save.

Note: If the BETOP controller isn't detected, press and hold the BETOP button at the middle of the controller. The LED mode lights change depending on what type of device you connect the BETOP controller to. The first two LED lights are lit for PC. If the controller is still not detected, disconnect the controller and then reconnect to a different USB port.



Gens/GS was able to run Castelevania: Bloodlines (1994) very well and matched frame rates supported by the Portable GamePlayer previously tested here for Unsolicited  But Offered.  Moreover, all 3 buttons worked and users can configure the three buttons as needed via the Options menu at the start of the game. However, unlike snes9x-gtk, out-of-the box audio support didn't work with Gens/GS and there were no background music and sound effects while whipping through creatures of the night.

Note: The Enable option was available under the Sound menu but clicking the option didn't enable audio. The gens-sdl version of the emulator actually ran Bloodlines with full audio, but failed to support the physical controller despite detecting the hardware.



Continued in Tested: BETOP controller with Fedora 25 and FreeBSD/openSUSE 42.2 on VirtualBox

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