How to install and play SNES games on Ubuntu

Installing SNES Emulator on Linux

Remember the good ol’ days when you would stay up all night trying to get to that next level.. when nothing else mattered but that extra life or one more point to beat that high score? Those were the days… but those days don’t have to leave you know. There is hope, and that hope is found in an SNES emulator by the name of ZSNES. If you do not have Ubuntu, you can still use ZSNES but you will have to build it from source which you should all know because it will come into play many times while using linux/unix.

The installation process of ZSNES is actually quite simple. Almost no work is required and it can all be done graphically through Synaptic if one wishes to do so but here we will simple use the terminal to save time. First off, let us update synaptic.

sudo apt-get update

Now it is time to install ZSNES which is found in the Ubuntu Repositories, if you do not have Ubuntu or would like to build from source, you can get the source code here.

sudo apt-get install zsnes

Now look in your menu and you should see under games, ZSNES. That is all there is to it! Now you have the emulator installed, it is basically just like the console. I have found that I have experienced some glitches with sound though and I would recommend going into ZSNES then Config >> Sound then setting the sampling rate to 8000HZ only if you experience sound lag. Also, you may have to install these files and I have read that you could try this command:

sudo aptitude install libsdl1.2debian-alsa

Do not forget to install your USB-based gamepad to get the most out of your gaming!

And while you’re at it, why not install an NES (yes the original Nintendo) Emulator! ¬†Or you prefer more modern games? How about a Wii and GameCube Emulator!


19 thoughts on “How to install and play SNES games on Ubuntu”

  1. this is awesome. I wish everything was this easy to install on linux because I am a linux NOOB. works great!

  2. Huh. This is going to save me some time. I was installing everthing manually. (nasm, libsdl ,- mind you, ldsdl needs like, 8 other .deb files. , gmake, etc) Thank you.

  3. Hi,

    Works great except for – no sound
    I’ve tried the killall esd and it says that nothing has been killed…
    Any help on getting sound with this would be very appreciated

    thank you!

  4. This walkthrough worked out very well. Im glad it works so easy. I think Im starting to understand why Im doing these things like this the more I read about linux. Im one of the newly converted from the windows world. Thank god there is finally an alternative that can do all the things I need to do. Lovin Ubuntu so far.

  5. Hmmm everything seemed to work ok but I also, have no sound as well. Everything else seems to work just fine except for the fact that I have no sound in the emulator. Really wish I knew why this might be happening but I dont know enough about how Linux works to analyze the problem.

  6. Well, goes like this for me

    sudo apt-get install zsnes desktop
    Reading package lists… Done
    Building dependency tree
    Reading state information… Done
    Package zsnes is not available, but is referred to by another package.
    This may mean that the package is missing, has been obsoleted, or
    is only available from another source
    E: Package zsnes has no installation candidate

  7. I followed the steps, but I get the error:

    E: Package zsnes has no installation candidate

    Thank you.

  8. I get:

    sudo apt-get install zsnes
    Reading package lists… Done
    Building dependency tree… Done
    E: Couldn’t find package zsnes

    I know nothing about Linux, I just started using Ubuntu. What have I done wrong?

  9. pbd, zsnes is in the ‘universe’ repository for Ubuntu. Many systems don’t have this type of software enabled by default.

    You should search for tips on how to add ‘university’ to your apt source list.

    I just got zsnes installed, working with sound and my joypad – Super R Type, right on!

  10. help I think that my synaptic is broken because when ever open it it comes up saying W: Couldn’t stat source package list common/main Packages (/var/lib/apt/lists/update.eeepc.asus.com_1.6_dists_common_main_binary-i386_Packages) – stat (2 No such file or directory)
    W: Couldn’t stat source package list p704/main Packages (/var/lib/apt/lists/update.eeepc.asus.com_1.6_dists_p704_main_binary-i386_Packages) – stat (2 No such file or directory)
    W: Couldn’t stat source package list p701/main Packages (/var/lib/apt/lists/download.tuxfamily.org_eeepcrepos_dists_p701_main_binary-i386_Packages) – stat (2 No such file or directory)
    can some one help me!!

  11. By the way can any one tell me where to get kpackage from? There is a guy who will tell me every thing I need to do but he says on his website that I need kpackage. Please help. I will be very greatfull. :-)

  12. I tried this and got the znes emulator, but whenever I try launching it nothing happens. Can someone please help me?

  13. HEY!

    this is awesome… but zsnes doesnt actually open…… at all.
    please help,

    ubuntu 8.10 intrepid

    peace thank you

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