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ImAGreatMagician

Legitimately patch valid copy of SC4 to 1.1.640 and play without CD?

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Before anything else I HAVE A VALID STORE BOUGHT COPY OF SC4, I HAVE A SERIAL KEY, A GAME ACCESS CODE AND A PROOF OF PURCHASE so please do not harass me with anything about piracy and illegal copying.

I bought the game years ago when XP was considered new and I have recently got back into the game because of all the neat mods (Love you guys btw your all great).

Ok I have everything updated and am currently running 1.1.638.0 of Sim City 4 Deluxe now I know that in order to update to 1.1.640 I need to install the BATupdate, which I will do if I must. No I hate having to keep CDs in my drive and risk them getting scratched and I really do not want to cough up $20 just so I can play the game on steam. Is there an official patch or anything that will allow me to have the update and play my game without a CD? I have looked around on the forums and seen several mentions of an official patch that requires registration to play without the CD, however all the links redirected to Facebook or something and were invalid. If this option still works, are there any working links? Anything pertinent would be of help.

Thanks.

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As far as I know, you can redeem Simcity 4 on Origin. Just input your serial key into Origin. By the way, I'm not a fan of the service, but it might be the easiest thing to do(outside of a no-cd crack).

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If you have a virtual CD package, just use it to make a copy of the play disk on your hard drive, then use the package to load it as a virtual CD. Used to work for me, but my CD's died of old age and bad storage, so I bit the bullet and purchased the digital download, which is complete with all updates and runs diskless. Try Amazon and/or GamersGate. Neither of these give you anything but the install suite. No login and no snooping. You might find a Christmas special about now.

Meanwhile, be aware that on the BAT page at SC4Devotion, you need take only the patch download (second one) to get up to 1,1,640. You only need the BAT if you are going to make new models, and then you also need gmax.

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I read in that thread that you can use the disk to start the game, and then remove it. Does that actually work? And the game still keeps running?? Heck, I wish I knew that before. Could have saved a lot of wear and tear on the disk AND drive.

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Does not work, I get some sort of invalid serial notification.

You can't use the automatic registration tool, you have to contact EA 'support' and get them to add it to your account manually.

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  • Original Poster
  • If you have a virtual CD package, just use it to make a copy of the play disk on your hard drive, then use the package to load it as a virtual CD. Used to work for me, but my CD's died of old age and bad storage, so I bit the bullet and purchased the digital download, which is complete with all updates and runs diskless. Try Amazon and/or GamersGate. Neither of these give you anything but the install suite. No login and no snooping. You might find a Christmas special about now.

    Meanwhile, be aware that on the BAT page at SC4Devotion, you need take only the patch download (second one) to get up to 1,1,640. You only need the BAT if you are going to make new models, and then you also need gmax.

    As Moose said, you can install a free Virtual CD program.

    Take a look at for recommendations.

    I have no idea how to do that kind of stuff, I tried to use Alcohol to create an image of another game but I could not get it to work and unless I get someone to do it for me that will most likely not be an option. I am hopelessly lost when it come to anything more than running an installer.exe

    Does not work, I get some sort of invalid serial notification.

    You can't use the automatic registration tool, you have to contact EA 'support' and get them to add it to your account manually.

    This may be more along the lines of what I am looking for. Can you post a link cause I can't seem to find anything related to EA support. Is this through Steam and once I have registered will they add it to my Steam account or Origins account?

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    If you have the Steam version you have 1,1,641. It should run without a play disk. My disks died of old age, so I simply purchased a new, legal copy from GamersGate. I don't have the complications that come with Steam or Origin.

    Playing the disk loaded version without a play disk is not a matter of patching, you have to eliminate the security system, and there really is no room in the .exe to do this if you have the legitimate patches.

    Now, you can solve this easily by purchasing the digital download version (watch for a sale). I recommend Amazon or GamersGate.

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    They won't add it to your Steam account, they'll add it to your Origin one. It'll just suddenly appear in your games list. If you really want it on Origin, go to support.ea.com then navigate to Origin support.

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    One of the things I dislike intently about both Origin and Steam is their abuse of the standard structure for the program that has been in use for many years. It is not only arrogant, it is a pain the the pant seat.

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  • Original Poster
  • They won't add it to your Steam account, they'll add it to your Origin one. It'll just suddenly appear in your games list. If you really want it on Origin, go to support.ea.com then navigate to Origin support.

    I have registered the game through EA at this website https://activate.ea.com/activategame.do and follwed the steps provided.

    1. Login with your EA account
    2. Enter the code in the box above.
    3. Click Sign In to redeem the code.
    • It may ask you to link or create a new persona. If the code is still coming up invalid, please email, chat, or call in to support and we can assist you further.

    Note: You may need to go back to options and click on "Refresh My Games" before the game will show up in Origin. If this does not make the game show in your "My Games" section, please log out and log back in to Origin.

    I have recieved an email confirming the game has been linked to my email address (the same on as origin) and my EAClassic sreen name is linked to my EA account. However that game will not appear in the Origin browser, is there some extra step I am missing?

    @A Nonny Mose

    I really think you have the best idea in the long run, but as I said earlier unless there is some super sale. I see no point in paying for the same product twice but I will if there is no better alternative.

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    Okay, I'm going to show a bit of my age and ignorance by posting this comment, but...

    What is Origin?

    Are you guys saying I can go to this Origin website, sign up for an account, enter the License key from the back of my SC 4 jewel case, and then download the game?

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  • Original Poster
  • The Issue has been solved, I ended up calling EA support and they added it to Origin for free.

    Thanks for all your help guys the support was great.

    @Ihrob Origin is EA's version of Steam, just another way for EA to cash in on the expanding internet based gaming market with their own client. Like Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

    So yes in theory just follow my link from earlier post. You have to create a EA Member Account or something then you get an email. I could not get the game to physically show up in my Origin borwser and I really never could figure out how that works, but I ended up calling EA Support (through Origin Help tab) and they added the game into the Origin client. It was wierd because they never asked for my serial key or some verfication that I bought the game (I guess they saw that I had entered the serial when I registered therough the website or something) any way they loaded the game into Origin and all is well.

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    The Issue has been solved, I ended up calling EA support and they added it to Origin for free.

    Which is exactly what I instructed you to do in the first place:

    You can't use the automatic registration tool, you have to contact EA 'support' and get them to add it to your account manually.

    It's also less of a way for EA to cash in and more of a temper tantrum from when Valve wouldn't let EA run riot on Steam.

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    As Moose said, you can install a free Virtual CD program.

    Take a look at for recommendations.

    I have no idea how to do that kind of stuff, I tried to use Alcohol to create an image of another game but I could not get it to work and unless I get someone to do it for me that will most likely not be an option. I am hopelessly lost when it come to anything more than running an installer.exe

    You don't need to be a computer expert to use these tools. Basically the steps are:

    - Install the software.

    - Insert the (original) CD or DVD.

    - Use the software to create a CD or DVD image (an .iso or .cdi file).

    - Instruct the software (a menu command or button) to create a Virtual CD/DVD drive (and assign a drive letter to it - I use S: for simcity). This drive can of course be seen in your Windows Explorer (under My Computer), and it's initially empty (as if the CD/DVD is removed).

    - Then "mount" your CD/DVD image to the virtual drive (this is tantamount to inserting a CD/DVD into the drive). In Paragon CD Emulator this can be done simply, by dragging the CD/DVD image and dropping it onto the virtual drive. Otherwise right-click on the drive, and there must be some command like "Mount CD/DVD Image", or "insert Virtual CD/DVD".

    And of course. you can even install the software and copy the CD/DVD image to another, diskless computer, ie the CD/DVD image can be created on another computer and be copied to the target computer.

    Hope this helps.

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    Yes, quite correct. This is simply a matter of reading the manual or help files. If the manual is in a foreign language there are enough translators around that are free. (Google, for instance).

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    Please correct me if I'm wrong, but despite all of the hearsay and pseudo-instructions above, nowhere have I read of anyone actually succeeding, or even really attempting to replace the game disk with a mounted image (virtual disk).  True, there are a plethora of free virtual disk programs available that are innately easy to use, almost fool-proof.  However, it has been my experience that the game still prompts for Disk 2 even after mounting an image previously created from it.  I've had no luck experimenting with different software packages, drive letters, volume labels nor image file formats (ISO, UDF, Joliet etc.).  Interestingly, I noticed that none of the virtual drives created appear in Windows Disk Management - which suggests the copy protection resides at a deeper hardware level than the software tested is able to fully emulate. 

     

    Google searches yield some interesting possibilities, but I prefer to proceed with caution when installing stuff on my PC and prefer a clean "unhacked" solution.  I certainly haven't given up and will report back with any positive findings.  Cheers.

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    Please correct me if I'm wrong, but despite all of the hearsay and pseudo-instructions above, nowhere have I read of anyone actually succeeding, or even really attempting to replace the game disk with a mounted image (virtual disk).  T

     

    I use Alcohol 52% it creates a virtual disk drive and you can also use it to create a image of the disk you want to mount, the only time I have any problems is if I forget I've been playing SimCity 3000 and I've forgotten to "take it out" of the virtual drive and put "in" the SimCity 4 image disk instead.

     

    -catty

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    The good news is it's definitely possible. But does require some software. As already explained, you'll need to create an image (e.g. iso, img) from the CD, which can then be mounted. Once the image is created, I suggest storing it for archival purposes (although quite large). This way you'll have a digital backup of your game CD.

    I used CloneCD (21 day trial) to create the image, and Virtual CloneDrive (free) to mount. Both packages are lightweight and easy to use. Once done, this will be recognised as a physical drive on your PC, and the game can be run as normal. Essentially, what it does is add a new temporary drive. As far as the OS is concerned, this is fully functional. When you like, it's possible to eject the drive, or later mount it by clicking the image file, or using an (optional) right-click context menu. If needed, multiple images can be mounted at once, while not affecting your physical drive. In my experience, I've found this software to be reliable and stress free.

    While not needed for mounting, I'd also advise doing the same for disk 1. This way, if (or when) your CDs wear out, everything will be there to install the game digitally.


    P. S. As a side note, the last reply to this thread was nearly a year ago. In future, instead of reviving topics like this, please feel free to start a new one. :)

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    Before I got the update to 1,1,641 by purchasing a new copy when my play disk died, I ran the game in the past using virtual CDs.

     

    As I recall, the package I used (don't remember which one) allowed you to have as many VCD drives as you wanted.  This extended the life of my CDs by quite a bit.

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    Just by way of information to clarify a bit the fact working  for some and not for others.
     
    The protection of the original CD is the pattern SafeDisc / SafeCast 2.xx - 3.xx  then if  the virtual disk is ready to emulate it  should work correctly even with a simple MDS.
     
    The not presence of the virtual drives in the manager disk may be due to activation of the HIDE-CdR on some softwares to avoid checking ATIP.
     
    CD copies are not suitable for emulation due to load data that are susceptible to this verification although she can only be made ​​in recording devices and not in normal CD-ROMs.
     
    This link MS also has some information about the problems with the load of cds protegidos.

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    I tried to use an image I just made of my Rush hour disc to launch without my disc (I want to preserve it, and I quite like silence), but I always got the "no disc" message.

     

    I created the iso with iso creator and mounted it with daemon tools lite, set to emulate Safedisc.

     

    I gave the iso the same name volume as the original.

     

    Anybody any idea what I could have made wrong ?

     

    Could it be that SC4 searches for the same path it was installed from ?  :lost:

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    I tried to use an image I just made of my Rush hour disc to launch without my disc (I want to preserve it, and I quite like silence), but I always got the "no disc" message.

     

    I created the iso with iso creator and mounted it with daemon tools lite, set to emulate Safedisc.

     

    I gave the iso the same name volume as the original.

     

    Anybody any idea what I could have made wrong ?

     

    Could it be that SC4 searches for the same path it was installed from ?  :lost:

     

    Maybe you could use Safedisc v2? Cause that's the actual version used. And SC4 doesn't search for the same path it was installed from.

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    Or try to create the image with CloneCD, as Cyclone suggested. This will generate .img .ccd and .sub files. Create virtual device if you haven't yet then mount with Alcohol 52/120 (or Daemon Tools but I personally prefer Alcohol). Works like a charm.

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    I tried to use an image I just made of my Rush hour disc to launch without my disc (I want to preserve it, and I quite like silence), but I always got the "no disc" message.

     

    I created the iso with iso creator and mounted it with daemon tools lite, set to emulate Safedisc.

     

    I gave the iso the same name volume as the original.

     

    Anybody any idea what I could have made wrong ?

     

    Could it be that SC4 searches for the same path it was installed from ?  :lost:

     

    Maybe you could use Safedisc v2? Cause that's the actual version used. And SC4 doesn't search for the same path it was installed from.

     

     

    Daemon does not give me options for v2 specifically...  :meh:

     

    Or try to create the image with CloneCD, as Cyclone suggested. This will generate .img .ccd and .sub files. Create virtual device if you haven't yet then mount with Alcohol 52/120 (or Daemon Tools but I personally prefer Alcohol). Works like a charm.

     

    I'll use clone cd then, Iso creator is a little "simplistic", maybe it missed something.

     

     

     

    I will do as you suggest then and install Alcohol, I hope there is no incompatibility with Daemon. If so I'll have to get rid of alcohol but no problem I already used alcohol some time ago.

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