How to utilize OBMM.

This page updated on May 29 2017 CST

Reconditioning a Downloaded Mod Archive

This tutorial will show the steps I perform to "clean up" mods downloaded from the Internet into a standard format for my library.

Assumptions (note differences as they apply to you)

  • You installed Oblivion Mod Manager (OBMM) to the default install folder.
  • You have Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 installed (a requirement of OBMM).
  • You have NIFScope installed.
  • You have TESSnip installed.
  • You installed Oblivion to C:\Program Files\Bethesda Softworks\Oblivion\
  • The OMOD folder will refer to C:\Program Files\Bethesda Softworks\Oblivion\obmm\mods\
  • The mod you downloaded is called MyMod
  • You want all your mod archives/readme's to fit a standard format that is easy to extract info about them.

Background Info

Normal mod archives are any archive files that have not been converted from OMOD format. They may not have readme files, they may not contain a folder structure that can be extracted directly in Oblivion's data folder, etc.

This tutorial will show you the steps I go through to prepare and convert a normal mod archive into OMOD format.

Procedure

  1. Download the mod from the Internet
  2. Extract the archive into it's own folder.
  3. Rename the folder to match the name of the mod (without the version number)
  4. If the files in the root of the folder are not correct, then re-arrange them.
  5. If there are screenshots, take the best one and move it to the OMOD folder and delete the rest.
  6. If a readme file does not exist, create one and name it the same as the mod name but with "Readme.txt" at the end. Example: MyMod Readme.txt
  7. If a readme file does exist, rename it just as the above if not already correct.
  8. Open the readme file and add the following information at the top:
    Name: MyMod
    Version: 1.0
    Date: 12/31/2006
    Category: Weapons and Armor
    Requires: Oblivion 1.1.511
    Author: John Doe (jdoe@gmail.com)
    Source: http://www.tesnexus.com/downloads/file.php?id=1
    Description:
  9. If there is a folder called meshes, it might be wise to open a few of the .NIF files with NIFScope and spot-check the texture path and make sure it isn't hard-coded. If they are hard-coded, simply edit the path and change it to a relative location and re-save the .NIF file.
    Incorrect Texture Path: C:\Program Files\Bethesda Softworks\Oblivion\Data\Textures\weapons\mymod.dds
    Correct Texture Path: Textures\weapons\mymod.dds
    Of course, you could simply skip this check and just see if the textures work in the game but then again, they might work right now if the hard-coded path matches your installation...but if you even install Oblivion to a different folder, the texture will appear invisible.
  10. Now that the mod is "cleaned up" we can then proceed to creating an OMOD.

Real-World Example

Please note that this particular example has many areas that I fix and does not represent the majority of mods available.

  1. Download Conan Sword, version dunno.
  2. Extract 2493-dunno-conan sword-TESNexus.rar to someplace like C:\Conan Sword\
  3. Notice that the .esp, .nif and .dds files are all in the root directory and it's missing a readme file. This simply won't work.
  4. We need to figure out what directories these files need to reside in or we need to modify the files and pick a location where we want to place them. For now, let's just figure out where they are expected to go.
  5. Use NIFScope to open "Conan Sword.nif" and notice that after expanding all properties, you'll see two references to texture conan.dds in C:\Program Files\Bethesda Softworks\Oblivion\Data\Textures/texture conan.dds
  6. Change both paths to Textures\texture conan.dds and save Conan Sword.nif
  7. Use TESSnip to open conan sword.esp and expand GRUP-WEAP-MODL, notice that the value is Weapons\Conan Sword.nif, need to move the .nif file under a Weapons sub-folder for the .esp file to find the model.
  8. Make a sub-folder called C:\Conan Sword\Weapons\ and move Conan Sword.nif to that folder.
  9. Make a sub-folder called C:\Conan Sword\Textures\ and each .dds file to that folder.
  10. If you were creating this mod from scratch, the best place to store this .nif is Meshes\Weapons\Conan Sword\Conan Sword.nif and the corresponding textures should be placed Textures\Weapons\Conan Sword\*.dds
  11. Now create a readme file, C:\Conan Sword\Conan Sword Readme.txt
  12. Use the readme template to add standard info at the top and copy/paste any author's notes that may exist on the website and it should look something like this file: Conan Sword Readme.txt
  13. Now that the mod directory/folder structure is cleaned up, we can now proceed to creating an OMOD.