HxC Floppy Drive Emulator

HxC Floppy Drive Emulator general information and news
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 2:35 pm 
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Hi,

Does any one know if HxC unit will work on the Tatung Einstein?
Disk images for the Einstein are the same as the Extended *.DSK for the Spectrum ZX +3 and Amstrad CPC.
These can be made from Einstein floppies in an XP PC floppy drive with CPCDiskXP software download from http://www.cpcmania.com/ .

Does the HxC unit manage all Extended *DSK images generically or do Extended *DSK images for different computers need the HxC unit to be configured differently?

Regards Chris Coxall


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 7:17 pm 
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christophercoxall wrote:
Hi,

Does any one know if HxC unit will work on the Tatung Einstein?
Disk images for the Einstein are the same as the Extended *.DSK for the Spectrum ZX +3 and Amstrad CPC.
These can be made from Einstein floppies in an XP PC floppy drive with CPCDiskXP software download from http://www.cpcmania.com/ .

Does the HxC unit manage all Extended *DSK images generically or do Extended *DSK images for different computers need the HxC unit to be configured differently?

Regards Chris Coxall


if the Tatung Einstein used Extended *.DSK, this should works without problem.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2010 11:49 pm 
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Post subject: Will HxC unit work on the Tatung Einstein?
Thanks Jeff for your reply
>if the Tatung Einstein used Extended *.DSK, this should works without problem.

As soon as a HxC unit is available to purchase I will like to get one to try one on the Einstein.

Regards Chris Coxall


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 12:22 am 
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I wondered if anyone could confirm if these work with the Tatung Einstein, and if so how to connect it up and what floppy cable to use.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:43 am 
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I have heard from people that the Tatung Einstein does work with the HXC Floppy Emulator, apart from a handful of games which have some kind of security encryption and will also not work in the Einstein Emulator in MESS, but will work if copied to a disk and used on an original Tatung Einstein.

I just wondered if anyone had any more information regarding connecting to an Einstein internally, such as jumper settings and cables needed.

I guess the main questions I have are:

1. Will I need to use the same cable as used in the Amstrad CPC 6128/Spectrum +3: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Amstrad-CPC-S ... 35b62ceee7

2. Will I need to place the power connector on upside down, like you do in the Amstrad CPC 6128? This is quite important I guess, as I do not want to damage the HXC or the Einstein.

If anyone could please help, I would be very very grateful, and will also report back any findings so the Einstein can be added to list of officially supported systems. I am surprised that no mention of the Tatung Einstein has been added to this list yet. It is a very underated system, and has some great games and the best version of Chuckie Egg I have played.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:09 am 
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StarshipUK wrote:
I have heard from people that the Tatung Einstein does work with the HXC Floppy Emulator...

... and will also report back any findings so the Einstein can be added to list of officially supported systems. I am surprised that no mention of the Tatung Einstein has been added to this list yet.


Since nobody reported me anything about a Tatung Einstein + HxC Floppy Emulator test, i cannot add it to the list.
To be added this must be tested.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:05 pm 
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The reference I found was here:
http://retrocomputermuseum.co.uk/forum/ ... 7#msg35247

But not really much information to go on. I also found this:

I did the 3" disks for the RCM Einstein - There are some games that cannot be copied yet (they have copy protection and being a niche machine nobody has cracked it yet). You can do them yourself if you have a PC running Windows XP and that PC has a 5.25" drive or a connector for one (so not a new PC). The 3" drive from the Einstein TC-01 can be connected directly to the 5.25" floppy cable connector in the PC as either A: or B: (if BIOS supports it).

The Einstein uses a 3" Floppy Drive like the Amstrad CPC 6128 and Spectrum +3.

I'll whip the case open later and take some pictures for people to look at.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 7:17 pm 
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I have managed to get the HXC Floppy Emulator to work with my Einstein. It was quite easy.

This guide here tells you how to connect a standard 3.5" Floppy Drive to an Einstein:
http://www.einstein.talktalk.net/pdf/idc.pdf

To make the HXC an A/0 boot drive, you need to cut 10 and 12 on a standard PC floppy cable as shown in the document and link them together. For power you need a standard PC extension power cable splitter.

The Game ROMS found at: http://www.tatungeinstein.co.uk/front/imagefiles.htm all loaded with no problems.

However the Game ROMS found at: http://www.tatungeinstein.co.uk/front/progress.htm did not work, but these do not work in MESS either. They WILL WORK on a real Einstein if you manage to transfer them back to an actual 3" disc, but will not work in MESS or using the HXC Floppy Emulator.

These games that will not work are:

CLUEDO
DRUID
ELITE
HIGHWAY ENCOUNTER
HOUSE OF USHER
KONAMI FOUR GAME PACK
MONOPOLY
SCRABBLE
SNOOKER
SOUTHERN BELLE
THEATRE EUROPE
THE WRECK

Perhaps someone will find the kindness in their heart in the future to look at why these do not work, and produce a fix.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 8:00 pm 
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I have just added two videos.

This shows Starquake loading with a Tatung Einstein and the HXC Floppy Drive:
http://youtu.be/JSql6wQuPYs

This shows Southern Belle not loading when using an HXC Floppy Emulator on a Tatung Einstein. Elite also fails to load in the same way. The other non-working games fail to load in different ways.
http://youtu.be/7DpzSo9nuSY


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:35 pm 
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StarshipUK wrote:
To make the HXC an A/0 boot drive, you need to cut 10 and 12 on a standard PC floppy cable as shown in the document and link them together. For power you need a standard PC extension power cable splitter.



No! you don't need to cut anything. Just move the jumper to ID0-Drive A on the HxC !

About the image i will have a look.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 11:51 pm 
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Jeff wrote:
StarshipUK wrote:
About the image i will have a look.


Did you manage to have a look at the non working images?


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 8:33 am 
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StarshipUK wrote:
Jeff wrote:
StarshipUK wrote:
About the image i will have a look.


Did you manage to have a look at the non working images?


There are missing some protections informations on these files...

are there a way to rewrite them on a floppy disk ? it is working ?


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 8:17 pm 
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The protected disks for the Einstein can successfully be read and written back to a real floppy with CPCdiskXP (http://www.cpcmania.com/) EDSK file structure information here - http://cpctech.cpc-live.com/docs/extdsk.html).

I've tested Elite and can confirm that writing the image back to a 3" floppy results in a working copy in a real Einstein. I don't know if the Einstein had some combinations of protection features not seen elsewhere but CPCdiskXP makes an accurate copy and to make working backups.

MESS also fails to run the protected games, but that is down to the floppy emulation being more of a work around rather than a real attempt at emulation.

The Protected disks can also be copied on the Einstein itself with advanced copy software. However just trying to access the protected disk, even by attempting a DIR (directory listing) command on the Einstein will result in game becoming unusable. In the case of Elite it will start to boot but stop after progressing to the splash screen.


Hope this helps you get to the root of the problem.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 07, 2012 8:46 pm 
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the DSK format is not very good to archive copy protected disks. However, the software knows about some protection schemes and recreate the needed data on the fly...

If we could get a dump done in a proper format (for example with the HxC tool), it will likely work much better.


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