Firmware updates for the STM32/Gotek HxC floppy emulators !

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mondo1976
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by mondo1976 » Tue Jul 11, 2017 3:56 am

Very happy to report that I tried to get a write error on my Emax and eventually got bored and gave up because it wrote successfully every single time. This was in raw mode, haven't tried HFE writes with this newest version, so I can't speak to that.

I'm so pleased with this new firmware!

namachari
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by namachari » Tue Jul 11, 2017 5:50 am

Jeff wrote:What is the relation between the CPU clock and the FDC clock ? The is FDC clock fixed ?

Is the machine working properly with a normal floppy drive ?
I wouldn't imagine that there is any relationship between the CPU and the FDC clock speed. The FDC has it's own Xtal so I'd think it's independent. To tell the truth, the system was working very well (still no Gotek writes) and then one day the Z80 died. After replacing the Z80 with the same (and higher speed rated) Z80, the system never worked as well. I just haven't been able to figure out why.
I haven't tried it with a real floppy for a loooooong time. Maybe time to give it a go.

I tried out your latest alpha release:

IMSAI 8080 - I ran various SD systems disk diagnostics tools on both HFE and IMG images. Random read writes, continuous read writes etc, and it never failed once. Previously the tests would fail about every second write :-)

SD systems SBC-200 @ 2 mhz - the bane of my existence!!!! I can PIP files around in HFE images, and it seems consistent. IMG don't even boot. Next I'm going pulling the VG monitor ROM and installing the SD systems monitor ROM, and do some tests with a more 'standard' config, not using the vector graphic VDU card and keyboard. but rather connecting to a serial terminal.

Anyway, certainly I see improvements on the IMSAI.

thanks

Phil
Last edited by namachari on Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:33 am

Ok then it's maybe time to prepare an "official" release. :D

namachari
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by namachari » Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:27 pm

Sounds like a good plan.

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Wed Jul 12, 2017 12:39 am

New version :

http://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_driv ... aTrial.zip

- libc memcpy/memset and some others functions replaced by my assembly versions to obtain some severe code speed-up ;)
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:wink:

namachari
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by namachari » Wed Jul 12, 2017 3:58 am

A quick reply.

I very briefly tested this on my machines:

IMSAI 8080 using .IMG files - Could not do a PIP to copy a file in CP/M, BDOS error. Running the SD systems disk test tools now hangs the system! Reverted back to previous version.

SBC-200 using .HFE files (.IMG files don't work) - No obvious difference noticed.

Will test more a bit later.

Phil

****UPDATE**** I'm still testing, but I can now confirm the above.

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:00 am

namachari wrote:A quick reply.

I very briefly tested this on my machines:

IMSAI 8080 using .IMG files - Could not do a PIP to copy a file in CP/M, BDOS error. Running the SD systems disk test tools now hangs the system! Reverted back to previous version.

SBC-200 using .HFE files (.IMG files don't work) - No obvious difference noticed.

Will test more a bit later.

Phil

****UPDATE**** I'm still testing, but I can now confirm the above.
Yes: Bad memory alignment crash at in FM write mode...
Fixed :
http://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_driv ... aTrial.zip

Thanks for the feedback.

namachari
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Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:33 am

Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by namachari » Wed Jul 12, 2017 3:43 pm

Jeff wrote: Yes: Bad memory alignment crash at in FM write mode...
Fixed :
http://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_driv ... aTrial.zip

Thanks for the feedback.

Thanks...thats better!

namachari
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by namachari » Thu Jul 13, 2017 12:56 am

Just a quick question:

I know you have recently done a lot of code refinement to get as much speed out of the read write out of the Gotek as possible. Just wondering if it would it still be true that speed of reading and writing to a .IMG file is faster than doing the same to a .HFE file?

Also, I know you fixed the two dot screen glitch which really helps my ADHD. But I was wondering if it would be possible to use these 3 dots (periods) to indicate the drive is doing something? The information that the 7 segments display can show is obviously limited, so it would be nice to utilise whatever we can to help understand what the drive is doing.

Some thoughts were:

- Flashing one light for reads, and another for writes
- a left to right animation (all 3 dots) for reads, a right to left animation for writes
- Not quite sure how the 'eject a disk' works yet, but could the dots indicate an ejected disk somehow?
- Something else?

Anyway, just a though. I'm not sure how practical it all is.

Thanks again

Phil

drwhy
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by drwhy » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:36 am

Hi !

I´ve tested V3_0_15_1a in my Amiga 500 so far without any problems.
It seems to be pretty much faster (in browsing through titles) than the
previous versions !

Now my question is:

Is there a possibility to insert files between slots ?

greetings
move.l $c0ffee,Screen

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:12 am

New File selector update with some new features:
https://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_dri ... aTrial.zip

You can now import from txt file / export to txt file / auto populate / check / fix and clear your slots configuration.

This is for the moment available in the Windows and Linux version in command line but i plan to move some of these functions in the Amiga/ST GUI.

HXCFEMNG.exe -help to get the command line options

Options:
-help : This help
-verbose : Verbose mode
-disk:[path] : Path to the drive to mount
-getslots:[filename.txt] : Get the slots list
-setslots:[filename.txt] : Set the slots list
-fixslots : Fix the bad slot(s)
-populateslots : Scan all supported file images on your SD/USB stick and auto add them into the slots if they are not already present in the slots.
-clearslots : Clear the slots

Examples :

(If F: is your SD / USB stick)

Get all my current slots setting into mylist.txt

HXCFEMNG.exe -disk:F: -getslots:mylist.txt

Set mylist.txt slots setting into the cfg file

HXCFEMNG.exe -disk:F: -setslots:mylist.txt

The current text format per line is :

slotnumber:/path/to/the/image.adf

Examples :

Code: Select all

00001:/pop.adf
00002:/DSKA0003.IMG
00003:/testfolder/dkboot_fat1440.img
00004:/EmptyFM.img
00005:/FM26S77T128B.IMG
00006:/HD1.hfe
00007:/HD2.hfe
00008:/HD3.hfe
Note 1:
Since the software do raw access to the SD/USB Stick, the executable can't be launched from these drive.
Depending of your setup, you may need to start the software in administrator mode.

Note 2:
The Linux version is available on github :

https://github.com/jfdelnero/HXCFE_file_selector

Checkout the repository and do a make into the sdl subfolder.

Any feedback is appreciated ! Thanks ! :)

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Wed Jul 26, 2017 7:21 am

drwhy wrote:Hi !

I´ve tested V3_0_15_1a in my Amiga 500 so far without any problems.
It seems to be pretty much faster (in browsing through titles) than the
previous versions !

Now my question is:

Is there a possibility to insert files between slots ?

greetings
yes probably in a next file selector release.

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:10 pm

Some releases :

Current version : Firmware STM32 USB HxCFloppyEmulator v3.0.21.1a

Code: Select all

Cumulative modifications since the last stable firmware version :

8 August 2017: Firmware STM32 USB HxCFloppyEmulator v3.0.21.1a

- LCD Display : Refresh rate adjusted and I2C dead lock issue fixed.

- Normal / direct browsing  mode :

Auto selecting the current image or subfolder if you don't
press the buttons during than 4 seconds. If needed, the file name
scroll during the delay time.
This modification make the additionnal select button optional.
Of course the LCD still needed for this mode.

- Indexed/selector mode :

Delay added before selecting the image. Browsing through the slots
is smoother. If needed, the file name scroll during the delay time.

- 7 segments display : 
  New error/message codes : 
  "FAt" : Fat init error.
  "NFL" : No file. Empty stick ?
  "CFG" : Config file not found !
  "cFG" : Bad config file !
  "Nor" : Warning -> in Normal/Direct browsing mode. You should use a LCD screen.
  "AUt" : Autoboot.hfe not found.
  "Err" : File image error !
  "Ldr" : Into the bootloader. 

- Config file save : Before writing to the disk, check that this is really needed.
                     (Parameters change check) 
 
7 August 2017: Firmware STM32 USB HxCFloppyEmulator v3.0.20.1a

- Low level I2C & LCD IO redesigned and optimized.
- Long names are now scrolling on the LCD during floppy emulation.
- Short name image type identification issue fixed.
- USB "Hot plug" support fixed in autoboot/"file selector" mode.

4 August 2017: Firmware STM32 USB HxCFloppyEmulator v3.0.19.2a

- New buttons behaviour and better debouncing filter. Navigation user-experience should be better now.
- Disk Eject function : Press both buttons to eject the disk. Working in indexed, autoboot mode, and normal mode.
- "Eject at power up" option added.
- Support up to 999 Images in autoboot mode (with the File selector) (Use the new CFG file and selector to use this feature)
- LCD : Display refresh improvements.
- New CFG file format : Some new flags and no more slots/disk drive limitation.
- Some critical parts rewritten in assembly. Huge code speed improvement -> Better HD density reliability. ED density to be tested ;).
- Code size reduced.
- Advanced USB mass storage cache implemented to improve read/write reliability.
  (Btw : Now when track size can be stored into the SRAM, the emulator will not read forever the data from the stick but use the cached data instead).
- IMG/ST file write support done.
- Huge RAW (*.ADF/*.ST/*.IMG) Write performance enhancement (Write 2 tracks at once !)
- RAW *.IMG files can be used in indexed mode : Name the files DSKA0000.IMG,DSKA0001.IMG,DSKA0002.IMG,...
- HFE write performance enhancement.
- "Autoboot.hfe not found" message added.
- 7 segments display "dots" glitch fixed.
- 128 & 256 bytes sectors support added in raw mode.
- FM support : Write to HFE file fixed.
- FM support : Raw (*.dsk) read/write support.
- New File format support (WIP) : HFEv3. Can now support copy protected images converted from IPF and others similar formats !
  Variable bitrate supported (CopyLock & SpeedLock). Weak/Flakey bits support to be added !
- Fix IPF support for these games: Jim Power, Z-Out,Xenon 2,Ghosts'n Goblins,Rainbow Islands,B.A.T II  and probably some others !
- Slot number printed on the second line during slot search with an LCD.
- XCopy write issue fixed.
- Sound buzzer output on the "JB" jumper position. You can connect a piezo or a magnetic buzzer (transistor needed for the magnetic version).
  The sound output can be disabled or enabled into the selector settings.
  (Note : Please remove these old sound mod using directly the step signal, they are producing reliability problems...)
- Mixed track format/density write support fixed (To be tested!).

  Current direct images support : *.HFE (RW),*.HFE V3 (RW) (early write support), *.ADF (RW), *.ST (RW), *.IMG (RW).
  Note : HFE files is a multiplatorms floppy image format supporting many systems and disk formats.

Selector software :
- New Bootblock for the Amiga version : The file selector is now "trackloaded" and start faster.
- Speed up the sub-directory change/browsing.
- Can start an image from the slot page with the F7 key.
- The File selector is now available under Windows and Linux ! : You can now edit the list from a PC !. (Compatible with all SD/USB HxC drives !)
  To launch it : HXCFEMNG -disk:[SD/USB drive letter:]
  See the selector readme file for more details.
  This is a new selection solution for all others machines without native file selector available.
- Linux/Windows version : You can now import from txt file / export to txt file / auto populate / check / fix and clear your slots configuration.
  Very useful for fast populating and compilations duplication ;)
- Windows version : Fix big size (>8GB) usb stick/sd access issue.
- populateslots option : autoboot.hfe filtered.
07 aug 2017:
- Fix the config file access error when the file haven't the archive flag set.


Converter / HxC Software :
- WIP : HFEv3 Import/export support added. This format support copy protections (variable bitrate protections and soon weakbits protections).

Thanks to all alpha/beta testers for testing the firmware and reporting the issues ! :)
http://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_driv ... rmware.zip

(in the <<Next_WIP_Alpha_Firmware_And_Tools>> folder)

http://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_driv ... _notes.txt

:D

Kingstener
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Kingstener » Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:16 am

@ Jeff,

at v3.0.21.1a there is a problem with the OLED display mod. After selecting the file (by push-button or automatically), there are errors in the first line. Can you correct that please?
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And the blinking second LED is annoying with scrolling text... :shock:

Jeff
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Re: New Alpha version Firmware - Volunteer Testers needed !

Post by Jeff » Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:16 pm

As planned : New features = new bugs then a new firmware to fix them is needed :lol:

https://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_dri ... rmware.zip

(in the <<Next_WIP_Alpha_Firmware_And_Tools>> folder)

https://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_dri ... _notes.txt

9 August 2017: Firmware STM32 USB HxCFloppyEmulator v3.0.21.2a

- LCD Display : Fix possible blackout/garbages issue.

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