Oblivion Mod Manager

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Utility Profile
Name Oblivion Mod Manager
Author(s) Timeslip
Short Name OBMM
Current v1.1.12
Project Page http://timeslip.users.sourceforge.net/
Download http://www.nexusmods.com/oblivion/mods/2097
Supported Games Oblivion

Oblivion Mod Manager (a.k.a. OBMM) is the fantastic work of Timeslip. Not only can you install and organize mods, but also you can organize your load order and implement multiple types of archive invalidation, with ease. It installs mods from special compressed archives, OMODs, that allow it to quickly access various details about the contents, relevant to using mods. Users and mod authors, can add a script to facilitate complex installations, a description shown when the mouse hovers over the OMOD in OBMM's window and ReadMes to the OMOD in order to give the user convenient access to the full document (via the OMOD context menu) before installing the actual mod.

>> Note: Windows 7 and Windows Vista users not running on an admin account need to make sure that OBMM is set to run with administrator privileges, which can be set in the files' Compatibility tab.

Highlights

The following is by no means an exhaustive list.

  • Reset BSA Timestamps - Sets the date of ALL BSAs to "1/1/2006"
    • Location: Utilities --> Archive invalidation
      Warning!!! If you have BSAs that overwrite files in other BSAs, move them out of the folder when you use this function.
      • Oblivion tries to render the newest version of a file; therefore, duplicate files with the same date is problematic.
  • BSA-Redirection - See [index.php?page=bsasandarchiveinvalidation BSAs and Archive Invalidation]
    • Location: Utilities --> Archive invalidation
  • OMOD file scripts - Facilitate (or even automate) mod installation by adding one of these to OMOD files
    >> Note: These scripts can be written in a language specific to OBMM, C#, IronPython and Visual Basic
    • OBMM's personal scripting language is fairly simple to use. Check out the readme or a tutorial site.
  • Load Ordering - Move plugins using the buttons at the bottom of the installed plugins list or the commands in the right-mouse-click menu.
  • The launch Oblivion button, automatically detects and launches the OBSE launcher if it is present.

Installation

  1. Download, extract and install the executable version of OBMM.
  2. Do the initial configuration for OBMM:
    1. Launch OBMM
    2. Go to "settings" (in the right sidebar)
    3. (Optional but recommended) Create an "OMODs" folder in your "Oblivion Mods" folder if you already have one, otherwise create an Oblivion Mods folder and another folder "OMODs" within it.
      >> Note: 1) This is recommended so that you have backups of your mods in a safe location. This folder should not be in the same place as your Oblivion install. It can even be on a different HDD or partition. 2) BAIN users already have an "Oblivion Mods" directory.
    4. Choose "Move omod directory"
      >> Note: Moving the directory reduces the size of the Oblivion folder and makes the OMODs real (safe) backups.
    5. (Still in settings) check "Never modify load order" (unless you have no intention of installing Wrye Bash)
      >> Note: This anticipates using BOSS and Wrye Bash to modify your load order.
    6. Go to Utilities>Archive invalidation
    7. Select 'BSA Redirection'.
      >> Note: 1) If you check BSA Redirection here and you also use BAIN, be sure to uncheck this option in BAIN. Using either is fine, but try to make sure you only have this method implemented once. 2) See the BSAs and Archive Invalidation page in order to learn more about BSA Redirection.

OMOD Status Boxes

  • Green - unactivated and no (visible) conflicts
    • If a mod installs files from non-standard folders with a script, OBMM cannot predict that a file will end up overlapping with some already-installed file. It will give warnings during the installation process (if activating only a single OMOD.)
  • Black - plugin conflict
    • The OMOD contains at least one plugin that has the same name and does not match (or OBMM did not install the plugin(s) and cannot tell whether or not it matches.)
  • Red - data file conflict
    • The OMOD contains at least one plugin that has the same name and does not match (or OBMM did not install the data file(s) and cannot tell whether or not it matches.)
  • Blue - activated
    • This does not always indicate that OMOD's contents are installed. If you delete all of the data files associated with an OMOD, it will not notice. (What if an OMOD only contains data files?)

The Quirks

...at least try to avoid modifying plugins outside of OBMM...

  1. Black box (plugin with same name already installed) - When you install the OMOD, there is a good chance that OBMM will not install any plugins and delete (not to the recycle bin) the conflicting plugins in the data folder. You'll have to deactivate and then reactivate the mod.
  2. Error: "Could not find plugin..." - OBMM may choke up on activating an OMOD where a plugin that had been in OBMM's plugins list when the OMOD was created was removed (outside of OBMM.) (The creation and activation may have to take place in the same session.)
  3. Script errors may interrupt installation with warning messages, but changes are not rolled back.
  4. The conflict detector is finicky and, overall, not very useful. The most information it will give most of the time is that there is a conflicting file (file with the same name and filepath) already installed. Some of the time, when it is aware of almost the entire state of the "data" folder, meaning everything was installed with OBMM, it will be able to tell if that conflicting file is a copy of the file in the OMOD. (The latter type of file overlap will not result in red squares.)
  5. OBMM load (seemingly exponentially) slower with the addition of OMODs after a certain number or total size of omods.
  6. You have to restart OBMM after installing large mods or OBMM may run out of memory suddenly. (It can happen at any point of OMOD installation.)
  7. Ran out of memory forced restart - Any files installed during that session are still installed but unrecognized by OBMM. (Activate and deactivate the OMODs that had been installed during that session to clean up.) All changes made during that session are lost, including OMOD group info and the list of plugins that OBMM was aware of.
  8. No conflict warnings when activating groups of OMODs.

Features of Note

  • Data File Browser - If you only use OBMM to install your mods, or use it to install most of them, this tool is very useful. Browse to a data file and it will tell you which OMOD installed the file (or last overwrote it.) For example, it is helpful when you cannot remember which mod's skin texture is being used because you have installed a multiple cosmetic mods and/or body replacers all contain a version of that file.
  • BSA Browser - Use this to extract, pack and browse BSAs. It is simple, and it works.
  • NifScope - NIF editor and viewer. (Need to check a texture path?)
  • Archive Invalidation - Recommended type of Archive Invalidation with OBMM: BSA redirection (which is set by default in the latest version.) Also, take not of the "Reset BSA Timestamp" function. It really comes in handy when installing mods with BSAs.
  • Oblivion Launcher - Launches with the OBSE launcher by default if OBSE is installed.

Tips

  • Overwrite all, "yes" or "no": Hold down the CTRL key when responding to an overwrite prompt for a "yes to all" or "no to all" effect.
  • Export active OMOD list: Saving this file is the equivalent of backing up your Oblivion.ini after making changes to your settings or creating a system restore point for Windows. In the event that OBMM crashes (i.e., from running out of memory after installing many mods or just a very large mod) it will not have saved any changes made during that session. However, if you have exported a version of this list, when you restart OBMM, importing the list will recover the state of OBMM at the point when the list was made.

See Also

External Links

Oblivion Mod Manager

Bethesda Softworks Archive

Oblivion Script Extender

BAsh INstallers

Better Oblivion Sorting Software

NetImmerse File