Not everybody hosts their files on the same service, so you won't always be able to download files in the same way. Sometimes the uploader adds a password, or requires you to click a couple of times to finally get to the download link (AXFC is like this). Some require you to wait for a countdown, or use something like the captcha service to check for bots.
Deciphering sm numbers
If you've been on youtube, chances are you've seen a few sm numbers floating around. For example, sm15357639. This is kind of like shortening Youtube URLs so you can embed them in a forum post. Also, since Youtube has a script that stops you from entering links (except in video descriptions), entering the sm number won't trigger the filter.
Nico Nico Douga's system is set up so that a video URL looks like this.http://www.nicovideo.jp/watch/sm15357639
It's common practice to take everything before 'sm' out, in case it triggers the Youtube filter. This has also become a habit for users in other places. When you encounter an sm number in the future, this is a video id and can be copy & pasted into google search to find the original video on Nico Nico Douga.
OR you could copy & paste it after "http://www.nicovideo.jp/watch/"
It'd be the same as taking "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHAVlw7FO-0"
and leaving out everything before "UHAVlw7FO-0".
This is common on forums where the ability to embed flash with BBCode has been enabled. For example, [youtube]UHAVlw7FO-0[/youtube], [yt]UHAVlw7FO-0[/yt], [media]UHAVlw7FO-0[/media], or whatever the mods/admin have set up.
The most common downloading services used in North America are Mediafire
, Megaupload, and Rapidshare
(there are others but those are the top 4, I was probably the only one using Filefront). With the possible exception of Mediafire, there are very few Japanese contributors that use 4shared, Megaupload or Rapidshare. These days the most popular are Loda, Bypatsu, AXFC Uploader Helium, Lithium, Scandium or Phosphorous (that I've seen), or 3DCustom.net.The original accessory uploaders aren't as frequently used anymore (due to them beginning to fill up).
Corrupt or 'Incomplete' Downloads
Have you ever opened up a .Zip or .Rar file only to find that there's either no data inside, or that it's supposedly corrupt? This is because the download got interrupted and cut out. Nothing serious.
Instead of trying to right click and save, follow the link with your left mouse button as normal. You may come to either a 404 Error (the file has been moved or deleted) or the link directs you to a service that requires more user input to get the file (ie: you have to click something or type a password to get in).
If you still can't download and you've confirmed that 404 error/redirecting to another page wasn't the case, try downloading from a different browser. IE is sufficient for many people at first, though many eventually make the leap to Firefox, Opera or Chrome (the last one is more hassle than it's worth, even if it seems to be working at the time. Chrome has been known in many cases to die a slow and painful death). In the end it's a matter of preference, and what kinds of features/level of customization you want in that browser.
If you STILL cannot download despite having checked all of the above, chances are that particular server may be having some difficulty at the time. Your best bet is to try back later, or find an alternative download.
403 is a 'Forbidden' Error, but it doesn't mean the file is completely inaccessible. In the case of the Accessory Uploader, (log/###.zip) if you click on the file you'll be brought to a 403 Error page, but highlighting the URL in the address bar and hitting 'enter' refreshes the page and the download prompt comes up.
404 is the only error you need to be concerned about, because a 404 Error only happens when the file has been moved to a different location or deleted from the server while the link still points to it's initial location. Sometimes files on the VPVP Wiki get deleted or moved, but you'll usually see red text saying 'lost file' and a strike
through the download at some point. The Wiki encourages users to report broken links, which Japanese users seem to do a pretty good job of doing. Links go down, and eventually are put back up.
Archiver programs sometimes have the feature to split a large download into smaller, more manageable parts in order to reduce overall download time. If this is the case, you'll need to download all parts of the file and then unzip the first one in the sequence. This starts off a 'chain' and the program works it's way through each part in numerical order.
If you don't have all of the parts to the file, the program will read up until there's a break in the sequence, and tell you it needs the next 'volume' to continue. If it prompts you to insert a disc, it's just saying that the file isn't in the folder it was supposed to search.
Installation For PMD Models
Welcome to the MMD Accessory & Model Downloading Reference. Here
you'll learn how to properly download and install MikuMiku Dance models
(and other components) so that they will load in their respective
program without difficulty. This won't be a very long tutorial, as there
are only a few key points you need to remember about PMD files.
Step 1: Have version 3.0 at least!
older than version 3 do not support multiple models. The later the
version, the more stable the program will be when loading the model as
well. Version 4 or 5 at least would be advisable. Version 512 was the
most recent, as well as the most stable release I worked on effectively.
It's faster than 6 and 7 (for me).
Step 2: Put your Models in the proper folder
Models belong in your 'Models' folder. You can put them elsewhere, but
you'll have to dig for them every time you want to open them. If you
want to sort them use subfolders. To find it, go to your root MMD
Directory (C:Program Files/MikuMikuDance or wherever you've put it) then
click User File > Models, and dump your model data in there. Also,
you MUST make sure that any textures that come with the model are in the
same folder. See below.
Step 3: Source files
common mistake in moving your models is that most people only relocate
the PMD file on it's own. Then when you go to display the model in the
program, the eyes or some materials may be replaced by white. Because
some models include extra textures, the model is programmed to link to
these extra image files. If they are not in the same folder as the
model, the link breaks, resulting in nearly bare models. Using Windows
Explorer (The file browser that comes up when you click 'My Computer' or
'My Documents' on the desktop) move these image files WITH the model.
Wherever the model goes, these image files must go.
If your textures are in the right folder and STILL don't appear, check
that they are either in .bmp or .tga format, unless you're using version 7 or later. Then png and jpg should work. If they
are, go into PMD Editor and try to find the material with the eye
texture, re-input the filename you have and see what comes up. Again,
the model must be in the same folder for this to work. You may need to
remove sphere mapping to troubleshoot in some cases."
Step 4: When your model comes in a folder
can use models that are downloaded in their own folder (like it it came
in a zip and the folder was there when you extracted) in the main
models folder, if you remember to relocate the source images as well. If
the model doesn't include any source images, either it uses some it
assumes you already have certain ones (such as models that use Miku's
greenish colored eyes), or you don't need any. More often than not the
eyes are the only issue (especially with Animasa models). You can relocate your "eyes.bmp" files (they're
numbered) to your new model folder, the model will automatically load
with the right eyes. Of course the easiest way is to move all of the
model data into the main models folder with everybody else :)
you've followed all of these guidelines correctly, you should be able
to load up any model just by clicking the button in the program, and
selecting any model from there. Some models, I've been told can cause
MMD to experience bugs or crashes if too much strain is put on it. In
other words, if you're doing too many crazy things at once. Loading up
every model in your arsenal and having them perform complicated routines
can potentially bog down a low end PC. Remember the 9 year old IBM?
Yeah that'd probably kill it no matter what software you use xD
Vocaloid Accessories typically come in a zipped folder as .vac or .x
files. To install these, find your root MMD Folder as with the models,
but click the Accessories folder instead. It'd be safest just to dump
everything that comes with the accessory in here with it. To guarantee
that it loads. For the sake of de-cluttering, it's handy to make a
subfolder for each accessory and rename it in English so you know what
Instead of clicking the button to bring up a model, you
look for the accessory button. It should be in the yellow area of the