What is DATVault?
DATVault is a service built into RomVault which helps keep your DATs up-to-date. With DATVault, you can simply click a button to update your DATs to the latest versions from your favorite ROM cataloging projects.
DATVault was created to solve several problems:
- There was no single place to download DATs. You would need to constantly check various project sites or forums for updates.
- There was no easy way to keep track of MIA ROMs (missing in action, or private ROMs).
- It was hard to keep track of when DATs are updated. Some projects update every few months while others update multiple times per day.
- Manually downloading and staying up to date with the latest DATs was tedious and time consuming. ROM collecting is a hobby, and keeping DATs up to date is a chore.
- Other DAT downloader solutions were either broken, unreliable, or not integrated with the ROM manager. Basically other solutions just didn't work well.
- Custom solutions require scripting and constant maintenance. A simple solution anyone could use was needed.
In short, DATVault simply makes ROM collecting and maintenance easier. It allows you to focus less DAT management and more on ROM collecting.
How do I get access to DATVault?
The DATVault service is included in RomVault 3.4 and above. Anyone can use it, but it is limited to official MAME “listxml” DATs without an access key. Patreon supporters get full access to the entire DAT repository and will receive a unique access key after signing up.
Why do I need to be a Patreon supporter for full access?
DATVault is a service that requires maintenance and upkeep to ensure it runs smoothly for everyone. Providing full access as a premium service is a way to reward RomVault users who would like to support future development. For the monthly price of a nice cup of coffee, the time savings DATVault provides should be well worth it, especially for heavy RomVault users and active collectors.
How do I get my access key?
DATVault is still very new, and a work in progress. The current process to get your access key is a bit manual:
- Sign up to be a Patreon supporter with either “DATVault Access” or “Beta Access Program” level
- Send a direct message to me (GordonJ) and let me know that you signed up. I will create a key for you.
Can I share my access key?
No. Each key is unique and you should not share your key. Your DATVault access key may be revoked if sharing is detected. I hope I never need to do this :/
How does DATVault work?
DATVault indexes DATs from a variety of sources, stores them in a repository, and delivers these DATs to DATVault users. This approach allows for better management, server-side DAT processing, and helps reduce the load on the source sites for the DATs. Refer to the next section to learn how DATVault works.