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Thread: Saving Sorcerer Software to a File

  1. #11

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    You can have a uIDE if you want, but I think we might struggle to fit the shim under the cartridge slot.

    Would love to see the Sorcerer booting to CP/M using one of these. I can help with the driver... as I have written CP/M 2.2 drivers for it already. Not sure how you'd modify the monitor to emulate tape loading from it, though. You'd have to make it aware of the filesystem (which I'd hope was CP/M based).

    http://www.cpcwiki.eu/index.php/UIDE...Z-80_computers

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by jltursan View Post
    I'm afraid that my experiences are similar. I've never found 1200 bauds a reliable speed and most of my time in front of my Sorcerer is wasted while it loads at 300 bauds. Reading what you've found makes me think, maybe there's a bug in monitor routines?, mine is not the original one, is an evolved version most probably coming from CompuData years; but shows the same behaviour.
    Could be. I have a Sorcerer II with the updated monitor (1.1). The loading at 1200 seems ok-ish except for large games like the Scott Adams adventures. The rest I can seem to load reliable 80-90% of the time.


    Quote Originally Posted by jltursan View Post
    My main objective is to get rid of the tape interface, there're a lot of new devices ready to work with SD cards (UniversalIDE, arduino projects, etc.). I need one for the Sorcerer right now!
    That would be nice. Tapes are unreliable and slow. Even my CD method isn't fool proof (but quicker to restart since you don't have to rewind the tape).

    BTW when you get your Sorcerer out, try and get this file to work. It's a game called Military Encounter (http://www.atariprotos.com/temp/me.zip)


    Quote Originally Posted by JonB View Post
    You can have a uIDE if you want, but I think we might struggle to fit the shim under the cartridge slot.

    Would love to see the Sorcerer booting to CP/M using one of these. I can help with the driver... as I have written CP/M 2.2 drivers for it already. Not sure how you'd modify the monitor to emulate tape loading from it, though. You'd have to make it aware of the filesystem (which I'd hope was CP/M based).
    Now that would be nice. I've wanted to run CP/M on my sorcerer but expansion interfaces are rare and expensive. Of course I'd just settle for reliable tape loading.

    I wonder if you could use the disk drives from the expansion to load assembly games or if they're only usable under CP/M?

  3. #13

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    I've kind of resigned myself to loading the BASIC games at 300 baud since they're only 3-4 min, but if anyone can convert Kadath and Super Star Trek to 1200 I'd appreciate it. Kadath takes a half hour to load and Star Trek is 15 minutes!

    Interestingly, even at 300 baud I can't get that Kadath game to load. Has anyone gotten it to load a real sorcerer?
    Last edited by tempest; April 21st, 2018 at 07:55 AM.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by tempest View Post
    I've kind of resigned myself to loading the BASIC games at 300 baud since they're only 3-4 min, but if anyone can convert Kadath and Super Star Trek to 1200 I'd appreciate it. Kadath takes a half hour to load and Star Trek is 15 minutes!

    Interestingly, even at 300 baud I can't get that Kadath game to load. Has anyone gotten it to load a real sorcerer?
    The 1200 baud version is the MAME-version, will not load on a real Sorcerer. I believe the 300 baud version is faulty. So I used MAME to create a new 300 baud version from the 1200 baud file. You can download it (temporarily) from my dropbox account. I tested it on my Sorcerer...

    kadath.jpg

  5. #15

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    Would love to see the Sorcerer booting to CP/M using one of these. I can help with the driver... as I have written CP/M 2.2 drivers for it already. Not sure how you'd modify the monitor to emulate tape loading from it, though. You'd have to make it aware of the filesystem (which I'd hope was CP/M based).
    You're right, the Z80 is located right under the cart slot. Maybe using the shim cards?, how tall is the shim with the Z80 fitted in?, I'll take some measures ASAP.

    I've no experiences with CP/M and Sorcerer, as Tempest says they're rare and expensive. Of course I can rely on Mame; but it's not the same.
    I'll try to find some info about the Sorcere's CP/M disks geometry.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by tempest View Post
    Ok I got the two chess programs working. I had to add the two addresses and subtract one to get the end point. So 4000 + 1C00 - 1 = 5BFF. Weird.
    It makes sense once you know what the numbers stand for.

    If you load a file you see the following information:
    [FILE_NAME] <file length> <file load address> <execution address>

    The execution address is usually the same as the location the file is loaded, but not always. For BASIC files it is often (always?) 0000 because it does not get executed but interpreted by BASIC. The execution address is the address that is used if you use the LOG command instead of the LO command. It is also the address you need to GO to manually to run the program after loading with the LO command.


    By default the file is loaded starting from the location of <file load address>, but you can override this if you wish:
    LO [FILE_NAME] <1/2> <alternate load address>

    The <1/2> specifies the tape player, of which you can have 2 defined. This is 1 by default.


    If you save a file, you are saving a part of the memory. The command is:
    SA [FILE_NAME] <start address> <end address>

    As mentioned earlier, the execution address cannot be passed with the SA command but has to be set separately in the monitor with the
    SE X=<execution address>
    command


    The <start address> is usually the <file load address> you saw while loading the file, but the <end address> needs to be calculated and is the <start address> + <file length> -1. Why "-1"? Because if you would
    SA TESTFILE 0000 0000
    it would still save 1 byte; the one located in memory location 0000.

    If it would be, say, 4 bytes, the data would be in locations 0000, 0001, 0002 and 0003. So the end address is 3, not 4.

  7. #17

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    The Sorcerer CP/M disks have been dumped, I have images of them if you need them.

  8. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by jltursan View Post
    I've no experiences with CP/M and Sorcerer, as Tempest says they're rare and expensive. Of course I can rely on Mame; but it's not the same.
    I'll try to find some info about the Sorcere's CP/M disks geometry.
    Is there such a thing? The Sorcerer uses an S-100 bus to access the S-100 FD controller. Depending on the controller and the type of disk drive you are using (48, 96 or 100 tpi) the disk geometry will be different?

    The FDC installed in my S-100 expansion is a Vista FDC and, with the single sided 40T drives gives 40/1/10/512 = 200KB. The documentation I have for it does not even mention an Exidy Sorcerer...

    About the rare configuration with the drives integrated in the monitor; I have seen a few of them on offer for months in the Netherlands, but untested and collection only. There are no takers because of [1] the price, [2] the size [3] the uncertain state [4] the number of units in the batch (6!, but only a few with drives) and [5] the number of active Exidy Sorcerer users in the Netherlands. For me buying them would mean I would have to clear out some serious floor space and it would put my marriage at risk

    I could facilitate getting some available but I would have to be reasonably sure that there are takers that would be prepared to pay, say, 200 for a working monitor unit with drives + shipping. Given the size, weight, and fragility shipping is a separate challenge...

  9. #19

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    I might be willing to pay that much, but how heavy are they? If shipping to the US is going to be another 200 euros then I’m out.

    Dumb question: with disk drives attached to the Sorcerer, can you load assembly programs from disk, or are the disk drives for CP/M only?
    Last edited by tempest; April 25th, 2018 at 08:12 PM.

  10. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by dutchacorn View Post
    The 1200 baud version is the MAME-version, will not load on a real Sorcerer. I believe the 300 baud version is faulty. So I used MAME to create a new 300 baud version from the 1200 baud file. You can download it (temporarily) from my dropbox account. I tested it on my Sorcerer...

    kadath.jpg
    Any chance you can also look at that military encounter file and see if you can get that one working?

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