revamped this old thread to let people know about what is (slowly) going on
now, someone might say: these games have been working fine since forever, in MESS.
In fact, there are 2 brand new features documented in the screens above: we have some very preliminary code ready to allow loading from software lists in NES
and, something new for MESS (and partially new for the whole NES emulation since Pasofami), the same code allows for loading real dumps (i.e. with split PRG & CHR)
the code requires A LOT
of work before it can be made available to public: e.g. the list contain less than 200 games, there is no current support for different mappers (the screens above were obtained by manually changing the mapper and by recompiling the source for each game), and the whole code should be rewritten so that softlist becomes the official way to load nes carts in MESS and iNES and UNIF files use its code, rather than the other way around like it currently is.
However, it is a first and long awaited step in the right direction and many thanks go to bootgod for the info he provided me. Expected time for public disclosure remains (hopefully) late spring - mid summer...