Please do not post a support request without first reading and following the advice in

Where are Favorites/Last Played collections stored?

  • Hi everyone,

    I've got multiple pi's running RetroPie, where the roms folder is shared via samba from one pi, and mounted via fstab on the clients. I've also got the gamelists and downloaded_images folders set up similarly, so I have a unified game library across all devices.

    I'd like to do the same with the automatic collections, but can't seem to figure out where those files are kept. I did stumble upon the github pull request where this feature was added and also this wiki entry for adding custom systems to EmulationStation, but I'm not familiar enough with EmulationStation and RetroPie to figure out how I might be able to set something like this up.


  • Global Moderator

    @ridgekuhn The automatic collections don't have a dedicated folder or configuration file, they're created based on the existing game information/metadata, stored in the gamelist.xml file for each system.

  • For example, the arcade favorites are stored here:


    To find the existing favorites, look for the line:

    And for the games you want to add to favorites, add the same line in the game's metadata.

    For example:

    	<name>Ms. Pac-Man</name>
    	<desc>Ms. Pac-Man (c) 1981 Midway.  A sequel to Pac-Man.</desc>

  • Your best bet would be to use custom collections instead of automatic collections such as Favorites, since custom collections do have their own .cfg file saved in its own location and those are easy to backup and get running on all your RetroPie setups.

    The default location for the Custom collections is: /home/pi/.emulationstation/collections

    Ex: You create a custom collection named Zelda and add all your different Zelda games to that custom collection through Emulationstation, then a file named Zelda.cfg will be saved under /home/pi/.emulationstation/collections. You could easily backup the Zelda.cfg file with rsync to a USB drive or your shared samba folder and then make it available on all your RetroPies.

  • My microSD card became corrupt and I had to revisit this issue, and I just realized I never thanked you guys! Thanks for helping me twice!!!

Contributions to the project are always appreciated, so if you would like to support us with a donation you can do so here.

Hosting provided by Mythic-Beasts. See the Hosting Information page for more information.