With my softmodded PlayStation 2 setup I prefer to use the HDD OSD as my primary interface, I like the ability to boot games from the stock Sony software. For preparing those games to boot, there's a fantastic piece of software called HDLGameInstaller. It has the ability to install games from disc or over the network. Note that HDLGameInstaller CANNOT install DVD-9 games directly from the disc drive. This is due to how the PS2 functions and is not something that the software can fix.
You can get the latest version of HDLGameInstaller directly from the developer here.
The most common way that most PS2 softmod users manage their HDD is through the full HDL or OPL software, each of which have their own UI as opposed to using Sony's software. HDLGameInstaller uses a mini OPL installation in each game's partition, and I've noticed it doesn't seem to have the same compatibility as the full version of OPL. I wasn't able to find any information on the development of this version of the software versus full OPL, so I wanted to start my own compatibility list.
The majority of the games on this list have been installed over network using the HDLGameInstaller PC client, but there shouldn't be any differences between a network install and an install from the PS2's drive. I run HDLGameInstaller directly from the HDD as a KELF.
Some of these games have been installed with a prior version of HDLGameInstaller, and if I don't recall the version I'll just be putting unknown.
|ICO||NO||SCUS-97113||0.818||Game loads but after starting a new game it black screens. Tried with all settings.|
|NeoGeo Battle Coliseum||YES||SLUS-21708||0.808|
|Rule of Rose||YES||SLUS-21448||0.818|
|Sega Ages 2500 Series Vol. 31 - Cyber Troopers Virtual On||YES||SLPM-62767
|Shin Megami Tensei Nocturne||YES||SLUS-20911
|Shin Megami Tensei Persona 3 FES||YES||SLUS-21621
|Shin Megami Tensei Persona 4||YES||SLUS-21782
|Space Channel 5 Special Edition||NO/YES||SLUS-20806
|0.818||Space Channel 5 Special Edition consists of both Space Channel 5 games. Disc 1 which has the first game does not work. Disc 2 with Space Channel 5 Part 2 does work.|
|Street Fighter Anniversary Collection||NO||SCUS-20949||0.818||Game will boot but gets stuck on the "Now Loading..." text. Pressing start causes the game to lock up. Tried with all settings.|
|Street Fighter EX3||YES||SLUS-20130
|Time Crisis II||YES||SLUS-20219
|Time Crisis 3||YES||SLUS-20645