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twodogs
December 10th, 2011, 03:01 PM
I finally got my IBM 5150 up and working with an XT-IDE card, compact flash adapter, and DOS 5. Now I'm trying to run MS Adventure. I downloaded the following image which I believe must be extracted to floppy.

Microsoft Adventure [DC] (1981)(IBM) [Adventure, Interactive Fiction].img

I first tried to look at the image with Winimage software, but it errors out and won't open it. I next tried to use the IBM 5150 to create the floppy as follows (this method has worked with other images).
- First, I connected my backpack 3.5 drive to the IBM 5150 (I have a boot disk with a backpack driver that works a charm)
- Second, I copied the MS Adventure file to a 3.5 floppy along with the Dskimage utility.
- Third, I used the command "Dskimage MS Adventure 0:40:2:9". This looked like it started to work, but it errors out and fails.

Anyone have ideas?

Twodogs

mbbrutman
December 10th, 2011, 03:29 PM
I'm quite certain that Adventure is copy protected and if so, dskimage probably can't be used. To be absolutely certain, which particular "dskimage" is this (is there a name and version on it) and where did you get the Adventure image from?

Chuck(G)
December 10th, 2011, 03:56 PM
How does this differ from the Adventure that was on CP/M and before that, a DECSystem 10?

mbbrutman
December 10th, 2011, 04:42 PM
How does this differ from the Adventure that was on CP/M and before that, a DECSystem 10?

I don't know. But that sounds like a good topic for a different thread. The OP is trying to get the Microsoft version for the IBM PC running on his machine, not doing a compare and contrast with other games that share the same name, but perhaps might be different.

twodogs
December 10th, 2011, 05:04 PM
The game was on a DVD that I got from the guy who sold me the PC. All the other games seem to work.

Chuck(G)
December 10th, 2011, 05:14 PM
I'm quite certain that Adventure is copy protected and if so, dskimage probably can't be used. To be absolutely certain, which particular "dskimage" is this (is there a name and version on it) and where did you get the Adventure image from?

Well, a little Google-fu and this turns up (http://www.filfre.net/2011/07/microsoft-adventure/).

Answer 1: It's the same game as the DEC and CP/M versions as well as countless other ports (I did one to the CDC Cyber 70 myself from the DECSystem10 tape).

Answer 2: The game is copy-protected, but in a rather simple-minded way--the sector addresses are "translated" from the floppy. A little poking around with a binary editor should give the secret away.

Only Microsoft would have the nerve to copy-protect something that was essentially in the Public Domain.

Erik
December 10th, 2011, 07:10 PM
The other bit of info to keep in mind is that Adventure was originally shipped on SS/DD media in a "proprietary" track/sector setup - I.e. not DOS standard so a disk image would probably need to write back as Single Sided.

Great Hierophant
December 10th, 2011, 07:37 PM
"Dskimage MS Adventure 0:40:2:9"

MS Adventure is a 160K game, so use the following dskimage attributes, 0:40:1:8. Your parameters are for a standard 360K image, so no wonder there would be errors, because there is nothing to copy there!


Only Microsoft would have the nerve to copy-protect something that was essentially in the Public Domain.

The underlying game may have been PD, but Microsoft's efforts in getting it to run on the PC are properly copyrightable and exploitable.

This game's protection has been bypassed, there is a disk image floating around and you probably have that.

twodogs
December 10th, 2011, 07:57 PM
I think we're onto something here. Here is a paste from the dskimage.txt readme.

DskImage 1.0
M. Brutman (mbbrutman@brutman.com)
February 10th 2006

Size Format Tracks Heads/Sides Sectors
5.25" 160KB 40 1 8 Very old format
5.25" 180KB 40 1 9 Very old format
5.25" 320KB 40 2 8 Very old format
5.25" 360KB 40 2 9 Standard PC/XT/Jr format
5.25" 1200KB 80 2 15 PC AT
3.5" 720KB 80 2 9 First generation 3.5" drives
3.5" 1440KB 80 2 18 Modern 3.5" drive format

I tried 0:40:1:9 and that produced no errors. Its progress, but the boot sector could not be found. Then I came back and found the latest posts, so I'll try 0:40:1:8. I'm wondering if it's OK that the floppy is formatted to 360K, but I guess I'll know soon enough.

twodogs
December 10th, 2011, 10:16 PM
Still no luck. The MS Adventure image is 180K, and I believe the size stays the same after disk creation. I formatted the floppy to 180K (format a: /f:180) and tried to extract the image using 0:40:1:9. No errors, but boot sector could not be found. I formatted to 160K with the same result.
I began to wonder if my Adventure was corrupt, so I began Googling and downloading from 3 different sources. I checked them with md5sum and they were all identical. I have a couple of thoughts. First, perhaps taking a 360K floppy and reformatting it to 160K or 180K might leave some remnants of the previous format? I don't have fresh floppies, but maybe there is a way to wipe them. Second, perhaps I need to fire up the binary editor and check for copy protection.

Great Hierophant
December 11th, 2011, 04:49 AM
My mistake about the disk image size. 180K is the way to go. Unless your drive is somehow not working properly, old data should not interfere with what your program is trying to do with an image rewrite. The program you are using does nothing fancy. Try the program called img2dsk, you may have better results with it.

twodogs
December 11th, 2011, 09:50 AM
I tried img2dsk with the same result. It appears to burn OK, but the disk will not boot. The directory has seven files of 0 bytes with garbage names.

Chuck(G)
December 11th, 2011, 09:56 AM
If you'd like, zip the image up and post it. I'll see what's going on.

hargle
December 11th, 2011, 10:12 AM
I tried img2dsk with the same result. It appears to burn OK, but the disk will not boot. The directory has seven files of 0 bytes with garbage names.

Now that you've created the disk image, you may be onto the next problem. Earlier XTIDE BIOSes didn't recognize boot disks properly, at least on some booter games.
You may need to upgrade to the latest version of the xtide universal BIOS.
http://code.google.com/p/xtideuniversalbios/

That .img file, and likely all the other games on that DVD of yours came from me. The filename at least suggests my handiwork. I hope you didn't pay for it.

twodogs
December 11th, 2011, 11:02 AM
I believe you are correct, sir. That's why it couldn't possibly be a problem with the file! Perhaps the next step should be to upgrade the BIOS. That would also give me the chance to solve the address problem I had with one of my addon cards.

deathshadow
December 11th, 2011, 11:20 AM
1) trying to do a directory of most booters returns gibberish or broken. Doing a DIR to verify is pointless.

2) If you're using the images I'm thinking of... using the 360k drive in my 98 machine with winimage made a disk that works just fine in both my Tandy 1000 EX and my Sharp PC-7000... so I suspect whatever method you're trying to use to make those disks is messed up... or maybe even the drive you're trying to use?

3) Yeah, the mere presence of the XT-IDE BIOS could be causing floppy boot to fail. Once you've made a working (in theory) floppy, get the XT-IDE card out of there and see if it works.

Chuck(G)
December 11th, 2011, 02:06 PM
If it's really the booter, it's simple enough to boot into DOS and use DEBUG to write a few lines of code to read the first sector off the A: drive into 0:7C00 and jump to it with all segment registers 0000.

twodogs
December 11th, 2011, 04:33 PM
I yanked out the XT-IDE card and the floppy booted right up "Somewhere near by is a colossal cave." Awesome. Thanks for your help. Now it looks like I have to reflash the BIOS on the XTIDE so I can boot the game without a screwdriver.

Twodogs

hargle
December 11th, 2011, 04:47 PM
Glad you got it! The XTIDE upgrade is pretty simple, and totally worth it.

Be sure to follow it up your playing with a viewing of the "Get Lamp" documentary!
http://www.getlamp.com/

Maverick1978
December 12th, 2011, 07:41 AM
I'm glad that someone else ran into these problems first so I have something else to reference later :) I've been meaning to get into some of the text adventure games, including Adventure, the Zorks, Planetfall and Sorceror (I've had those for years in C64), as well as some of the older Sierra hi-res stuff that I've booted but never actually played through.

Of course, just like console gaming, it's just not as "real" if you emulate it... playing on the era-specific hardware is a must! :)

hargle
December 12th, 2011, 09:46 AM
Luckily, all of the infocom games have been successfully converted into real DOS applications now instead of requiring them to be written to bootable diskettes. According to my games collection, there are only ~50 games (out of over 3000) released from 1981-1989 that need to be written to a bootable disk to be played.

Mad-Mike
December 13th, 2011, 12:26 PM
Seems odd someone having so much trouble, I have a 360K and 1.44M bootable diskette copies of this game made using a program called img2dsk accessable here

http://www.zimlab.com/wizardry/retrograde/programs.htm

I had it on the original 160K that I'd play on my Tandy 1000 SX back in the day all the time. When I started configing my more recent machines to use 1.4M bootable floppies, I experimented with using img2dsk to make a diskette of Adventure using 1.44M diskettes - it works perfectly, I can still run off the diskette on my current Dual Core box (LOL). So IMG2DSK is the program I recommend, and you can even run it on that IBM if you want to, it should work, I do most of the IMG2DSK work on my Tandy 1000A these days.

twodogs
December 13th, 2011, 12:28 PM
Awesome. I reflashed to XTIDE BIOS version v1.1.5 and it does allow booter games to load. Hargle, is 300h still the best address for the XTIDE? I thought I read in one of the threads that there is a better option. I might have a conflict with my multifunction card.

twodogs
December 13th, 2011, 02:53 PM
Uh oh! Time to go to the XTIDE tech support thread.

twodogs
December 15th, 2011, 06:39 AM
All is well now. I'll sum up what I learned.
1. Know how to recognize a booter game. It will be an image file of a size that exactly matches the formatted capacity of specific media (listed at bottom).
2. Find the correct media and format it to the size of the image file. In my case the command was "format a: /f:180"
3. Use a utility like img2dsk or dskimage to extract the file to the media. The file directory structure will look like garbage and can't be used to verify a correct image burn. Boot the computer from disk to see if it works.
4. If you have an XTIDE card, you must use BIOS v1.1.5. Earlier versions will not permit the booter to boot.
5. Unrelated to the game, I had a problem with my XTIDE card failing to correctly recognize my drive. This required an easy hardware mod http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/showthread.php?19591-XTIDE-tech-support-thread/page30

Thanks to all,
Twodogs

Size Format Tracks Heads/Sides Sectors
5.25" 160KB 40 1 8 Very old format
5.25" 180KB 40 1 9 Very old format
5.25" 320KB 40 2 8 Very old format
5.25" 360KB 40 2 9 Standard PC/XT/Jr format
5.25" 1200KB 80 2 15 PC AT
3.5" 720KB 80 2 9 First generation 3.5" drives
3.5" 1440KB 80 2 18 Modern 3.5" drive format

tmatuc
January 22nd, 2012, 07:57 PM
Does anyone have a link to the DOS disk image? Thxs

mbbrutman
January 23rd, 2012, 05:19 AM
Does anyone have a link to the DOS disk image? Thxs

No. That's a copyrighted title and we don't do "warez" or "abandonware" here. Look on eBay for a used copy.

tmatuc
January 23rd, 2012, 02:51 PM
I have a copy, how do I make an image?

twodogs
January 24th, 2012, 06:59 AM
That's covered in post #25 above. I think your question probably has more to do with the general process of getting software from a new computer to an old one. I have a Windows 98 computer with a 3.5 floppy drive on it. I copied the image file to the disk along with the dskimage (or img2dsk) program. I also have a Backpack drive - this is a 3.5 external disk drive that connects to the parallel port of my IBM 5150. From the backpack drive, the command is something like "dskimage filename.img a: /f" This command formats the 5.25 disk on the IBM while at the same time burning the image.
An alternate method would be to have a more modern computer with a 5.25 floppy drive installed. Then just burn the disks on that machine and good to go. I tried this and failed because I purchased a newer TEAC 720K 80 track drive. The old drives were 360K 40 track so I had compatibility problems. Perhaps with some fiddling I can get it to work, but I wish I had bought a 360K drive.

tmatuc
January 24th, 2012, 02:24 PM
I understand the process of taking the image and putting it on a disk (img2dsk) but how do I get an image from my disk? Is there a dsk2img utility?

Trixter
January 24th, 2012, 06:09 PM
Yes, but what kind of disk are you trying to image? Is it a plain DOS-formatted disk? Is it a commercial game? Knowing what you are trying to make an image file of will help us recommend the correct utility for you.

tmatuc
January 24th, 2012, 07:36 PM
It is Microsoft Adventure - the disk is formatted for 180k and it is copy protected (see previous posts in this thread).

per
January 25th, 2012, 09:36 AM
It is Microsoft Adventure - the disk is formatted for 180k and it is copy protected (see previous posts in this thread).

If you want to make a true copy, then you will need some way to bypass the conventional floppy disk controller. The best way to do this is to use a hardware interface that directly accessed the floppy disk drive on the absolute lowest level. Several such solutions exists, like several versions of the Central Point's CopyIIPC Option Board (Internal ISA, a slow CPU requiered), the Catweasel (Internal ISA/PCI) or the Kyroflux (External USB) devices.

These devices will make images of the exact magnetical properties of the disk. However, these can't be used right away by emulators due to the low-level nature of the image data (basically, the data in the image is encoded just like on the disk, and emulators only understand decoded images. This is also the reasons why these devices work with most copy protected disks, as most floppy disk copyprotection scheemes fools around with the decoding hardware of the conventional floppy disk controller. Taking the decoding out of the picrue renders these protection scheemes useless).

tmatuc
January 25th, 2012, 02:42 PM
Too complicated for me! Is there not a software solution?

Trixter
January 26th, 2012, 08:24 AM
Image files can be made with tools either designed to copy odd/interesting disk formats (ImageDisk, Teledisk) or tools specifically targeted for duplicating copy-protected game titles (CopyIIPC+Snatchit). ImageDisk and shareware versions of Teledisk can be found at http://www.classiccmp.org/dunfield/img/index.htm .

I would try to duplicate your disk first with ImageDisk, then if that doesn't work, go searching for other tools. ImageDisk is great software, and free too.

per
January 26th, 2012, 10:57 AM
Image files can be made with tools either designed to copy odd/interesting disk formats (ImageDisk, Teledisk) or tools specifically targeted for duplicating copy-protected game titles (CopyIIPC+Snatchit). ImageDisk and shareware versions of Teledisk can be found at http://www.classiccmp.org/dunfield/img/index.htm .

I would try to duplicate your disk first with ImageDisk, then if that doesn't work, go searching for other tools. ImageDisk is great software, and free too.

I read somewhere that CopyIIPC and Teledisk attempts to actually patch the disk to remove the copyprotection... I have not verified if this is the case or not, but I just want to mention it in case you would find this as an issue.

Trixter
January 26th, 2012, 11:51 AM
CopyIIPC would patch a few mechanisms, yes. Usually only the most common ones like Everlock or Sierra or Electronic Arts games. Otherwise it would try to duplicate the disk verbatim. CopyWrite did the same thing but with a lot more patching and a lot less copying.

I don't believe Teledisk attempted any sort of patching at all; it was a straight disk imaging utility. If it definitely did not, Chuck may pipe in. If it definitely did, Chuck will most likely not pipe in ;-)

Maverick1978
January 26th, 2012, 12:55 PM
Could someone explain the CopyIIPC + SnatchIt! method of copying disks? I've seen mention of this several times over the years, but nowhere have I seen or been able to find more than a single cursory explanation of it - basically, I've only seen that this method can be used to capture disk images, but nothing of the "how-to" so far as actually putting this method to use!

Trixter
January 27th, 2012, 01:37 PM
Download a CopyIIPC+Snatchit .zip file and read the docs for Snatchit and all will be made clear.

twodogs
January 28th, 2012, 09:03 AM
Tmatuc,

You might be able to get better advice if you'd tell us exactly what type of computer and software you are trying to run, along with the symptoms. If your floppy is corrupted, then making an image will only replicate the error.

tmatuc
January 29th, 2012, 05:20 PM
SUCCESS! Evidently there are two versions of img2dsk. One is an exe file(27kB) and the other is a com file(3kB). The executable version format is <img file> to <output file>. The command version format is <img file> to <floppy drive letter>. The img2dsk.com is the version I needed. Voila! I was able to transfer the Microsoft Adventure image to 5.25" 180kB, 360kB and also to 3.5" 1.44MB. They all boot on my machine and run. Thanks all.

tmatuc