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Is WinSCP or Putty necessary?

  • Hi all,
    It's been an inordinately long length of time since I have been on this forum and posted anything, not that I haven't read quite a bit.

    Thanks to the sterling work by hiulit and the video conversion tool he wrote (believe it was a joint effort) , and me trawling through loads of posts, I have managed to sort out the non playing of videos issue I had since the update.

    Due to that I have been on YouTube looking at the various ffmpeg videos, and found it very informative.

    However, that is not the point of my question.

    I had some issues with my new laptop (another reason why I haven't frequented), in that I was unable to "see" my pi on the network - was OK with my work laptop, I put this down to MacAfee Virus program controlling firewalls and the like.
    However, I was strangely able to map the network drive and gain access to all the necessary main folders (Bios, Roms, Configs, Splashscrrens) via this. I could then copy arcade roms from my laptop to the pi over the wireless network.

    So it begs the question, is WinSCP, Putty, or any other "file sharing" program necessary?

    I do have the latest WinSCP program, and strangely with this it connected directly to the Pi with no issues whatsoever! But from what I can see it allows me to do the same things as a mapped drive.
    I also downloaded from here a program called Programmers Notepad which allows editing of the XML files, I know WinSCP has a built in one, but don't know if edited files are saved in the correct format or not.

    So can anyone give me the advantages of using the WinSCP program (or similar) over the straight forward Mapped Network (Or if it's visible, clicking directly on the RETROPIE in the Network Tab), method of doing things????

  • @Impman66 I don't think this is as much about advantages as it is about understanding the difference.

    • WinSCP and Putty communicates using the ssh protocol.
    • A Windows share communicates over the CIFS protocol.

    So it's two very different things. The reason the Pi isn't discovered by the network is probably down to the broadcasts coming from the Pi being overlooked or rejected somehow. Or maybe you are segmented from the broadcasts. Hard to tell when I don't know your network of course. But basically it's like this:
    If you can see the Pi in your Windows Network, it's because the Windows machine has received a broadcast from the Pi telling it "Hey, I'm here! Show me!". But that is not a necessity for you to be able to communicate with it. It's just a convenience. If you know the IP address of the Pi, you can just connect the share using that and it'll work just fine.

    The advantage to WinSCP and Putty is that it's more Linux-centric. So for people like me, a daily Linux user, that is what I personally feel most at home with (SSH, I don't use Putty and WinSCP obviously as Linux has it built-in basically). But at the end of the day, there isn't much difference. Oh, but Putty of course allows you to run commands on the Pi. A Windows share won't do that for you. So I guess this is more like a WinSCP compared to Windows Share discussion.

  • Nice one thanks for clarification on that. Having just started to use the WinSCP, I am getting to like it and getting to grips with it.
    Being in lockdown, helps as I have so much more time on my hands to actually do and learn things.
    Once again thanks.

  • I manage things with a desktop session on my rpi4.

    I installed vanilla raspbian first, then did the retropi manual install.

    I have this line in my /etc/rc.local:
    su pi -c vncserver :1 >/dev/null 2>&1 &
    This starts a vnc server on the pi at port 5901.

    I can then connnect with realvncviewer, and work through the graphical desktop. Downloads don't have to be copied across the network, I just do it in the shell prompt.

  • Global Moderator

    @Impman66 said in Is WinSCP or Putty necessary?:

    So it begs the question, is WinSCP, Putty, or any other "file sharing" program necessary?

    no, there are 3 supported methods of copying roms, and you're simply using the third:

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