Hard sector format

HxC Floppy emulator support for all others computers...
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Jeff
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by Jeff » Fri Aug 03, 2018 7:45 am

snhirsch wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:57 pm
djones60 wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:33 pm
I hadn't looked the codes up but seemed to remember that is what they meant.

What I find interesting it the retry eventually works. I would think it would always work or never work. Seems like there is a funny timing issue in there somewhere.

Something else I noticed with my GoTek. To get it to boot, I had to install the motor on jumper. But to boot off the floppy, I had to remove that jumper. If I booted from the GoTek, I couldn't read the floppy until I removed the jumper again once the machine had booted.

David
That's odd behavior. Not seeing that here. Are you sure you have the drive select on both floppy and Gotek set correctly? Also, if you are using a PC cable with a "twist" in it that can cause all sorts of mayhem with drive assignment.
This is not a surprise : I suppose that the machine is trying to boot on the first drive, which is the the floppy drive according to your post. putting MO force the Gotek selection and let you boot from it if you have not floppy disk inserted in the floppy. But MO jumper is also making a conflict with the floppy drive because both drives are selected if you try to read the floppy drive.

snhirsch
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by snhirsch » Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:57 pm

Jeff wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 7:45 am
snhirsch wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:57 pm
djones60 wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:33 pm
I hadn't looked the codes up but seemed to remember that is what they meant.

What I find interesting it the retry eventually works. I would think it would always work or never work. Seems like there is a funny timing issue in there somewhere.

Something else I noticed with my GoTek. To get it to boot, I had to install the motor on jumper. But to boot off the floppy, I had to remove that jumper. If I booted from the GoTek, I couldn't read the floppy until I removed the jumper again once the machine had booted.

David
That's odd behavior. Not seeing that here. Are you sure you have the drive select on both floppy and Gotek set correctly? Also, if you are using a PC cable with a "twist" in it that can cause all sorts of mayhem with drive assignment.
This is not a surprise : I suppose that the machine is trying to boot on the first drive, which is the the floppy drive according to your post. putting MO force the Gotek selection and let you boot from it if you have not floppy disk inserted in the floppy. But MO jumper is also making a conflict with the floppy drive because both drives are selected if you try to read the floppy drive.
Good catch, Jeff! When you try to boot from the Gotek it must be select 0. You mentioned in your post that you're not setup that way and I didn't read carefully enough to spot it.

djones60
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by djones60 » Fri Aug 03, 2018 8:31 pm

Ok. That makes sense. I was wondering about it being the B: drive at the time. Then was on to other stuff and forgot about it and their being a possible conflict. I'll switch things tonight and see if it's happier :)

So, can the GoTek's be set up as a B: drive or do they always need to be the A: drive?

snhirsch
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by snhirsch » Fri Aug 03, 2018 8:55 pm

djones60 wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 8:31 pm
Ok. That makes sense. I was wondering about it being the B: drive at the time. Then was on to other stuff and forgot about it and their being a possible conflict. I'll switch things tonight and see if it's happier :)

So, can the GoTek's be set up as a B: drive or do they always need to be the A: drive?
It's not a matter of Gotek vs. floppy, but of which drive you want to boot from. The boot drive (emulated or real) must always be drive 0.

djones60
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by djones60 » Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:10 pm

True, But the NS Advantage has a boot time choice. So you can boot from either. When you get the "Load System" prompt, you can just press enter to boot from drive 0. Or enter D2, to boot from drive 1.

snhirsch
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by snhirsch » Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:24 pm

djones60 wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 11:10 pm
True, But the NS Advantage has a boot time choice. So you can boot from either. When you get the "Load System" prompt, you can just press enter to boot from drive 0. Or enter D2, to boot from drive 1.
I never knew that. I will experiment with this to see if I can reproduce the issue you reported.

dwight
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by dwight » Tue Aug 07, 2018 2:03 am

I'm not having much luck locating a N* in Europe. It might be that we could find some boards and send them to him. He could then supply the S-100 to plug them into. The only issue there is that the mother-board has the serial terminal ( on the Horizon ) I'm not sure how one might do the same for the Advantage. The serial is just a 8251 so it shouldn't be too hard to find a serial card and some RAM. For the serial it is a matter of matching the address for the 8251. I don't think the code uses serial interrupts. I'm not sure about the disk controller. It has interrupt outputs but even there I'm not sure if it uses them. I don't think the CPU even has any special thing. When booting from disk, the controller has the first low level code that brings the rest in. There may be some special boot addressing on the cpu card though.
Dwight

djones60
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by djones60 » Fri Aug 10, 2018 4:28 pm

Is there a version of the HxCFloppyEmulator that converts Northstar NSI files into HFE and that work on the HxC? The one I've tried so far converts the files but they aren't readable by my NS Advantage. So I was wondering if I was just using the wrong version or if it's a work in progress. Is this something that volunteers are needed for development or testing?

Thanks
David

snhirsch
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by snhirsch » Fri Aug 10, 2018 5:21 pm

djones60 wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 4:28 pm
Is there a version of the HxCFloppyEmulator that converts Northstar NSI files into HFE and that work on the HxC? The one I've tried so far converts the files but they aren't readable by my NS Advantage. So I was wondering if I was just using the wrong version or if it's a work in progress. Is this something that volunteers are needed for development or testing?
The latest version should be able to do this. You need to select HFE version 3 as the output type, however. Jeff's code can convert single or double-sided MFM images, but I do not think it supports FM (older format).

djones60
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by djones60 » Fri Aug 10, 2018 5:52 pm

Thanks. That is probably what I was doing wrong. I was just using the default HFE export and didn't scroll down and try the other ( v3 ). I'll give it a try when I get home from work today.

snhirsch
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by snhirsch » Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:27 pm

djones60 wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 5:52 pm
Thanks. That is probably what I was doing wrong. I was just using the default HFE export and didn't scroll down and try the other ( v3 ). I'll give it a try when I get home from work today.
Just keep in mind that the timing relative to generated index may not be optimal in the HFE export. That was the point behind the variety of HFE files posted above. Jeff generated a bunch of variations using an unreleased version of the tool and I'm not sure if the default from HxCFloppyEmulator corresponds to the one we found to work best.

djones60
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by djones60 » Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:43 pm

I assumed it wouldn't be reliable even if it works. I was just going to mess around with some images and see what I can pull off them.

Jeff
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by Jeff » Tue Aug 14, 2018 10:56 am

A question to everyone present in this thread : Is the "Gotek" hardware is a must for you ?
I mean : Today there is definitively some more reliable and interesting solutions available. I am thinking about something designed around a Raspberry-Like solution.
BTW is there someone with a Raspberry Pi Zero (W) here ?

snhirsch
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by snhirsch » Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:10 pm

Jeff wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 10:56 am
A question to everyone present in this thread : Is the "Gotek" hardware is a must for you ?
I mean : Today there is definitively some more reliable and interesting solutions available. I am thinking about something designed around a Raspberry-Like solution.
BTW is there someone with a Raspberry Pi Zero (W) here ?
The Gotek hardware is not a "must", but low cost is important to me. An RPi based solution would be fine if it can be somehow mounted similar to the Gotek. A loose Pi is not a good answer - needs to be attached to the machine.

Jeff
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Re: Hard sector format

Post by Jeff » Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:40 pm

Why low cost is important for you ? Do you plan to resell them ? Or plan to install thousand units somewhere ?

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