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Thread: Exidy Sorcerer CP/M logical device redirection

  1. #11

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    Witchy,
    Please Contact Dwight (VCF PM) as I'm sure he has some 16 Sector Punches that he is willing to sell. I seem to remember the figure
    of $35.00 for a Punch assembly. Shipping would be the worst part.

    I also sent you a couple of emails.

    Larry
    Last edited by ldkraemer; October 8th, 2018 at 02:29 PM.

  2. #12

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    In terms of getting files across; I found a Modem7 implementation on one of my floppies. You can download the 300BPS WAV here:
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/03racdgx9g...odem7.wav?dl=0

  3. #13

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    Oh nice one, I'll give that a try shortly. My machine struggles with 300 baud WAVs though so this will be interesting. I've tried files from Exidyboy and Tezza and none have worked at 300. 1200 is fine though, perhaps oddly. I'll report back
    www.binarydinosaurs.co.uk - UK home computer history
    Where RIFA capacitors come to die
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  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by Witchy View Post
    Oh nice one, I'll give that a try shortly. My machine struggles with 300 baud WAVs though so this will be interesting. I've tried files from Exidyboy and Tezza and none have worked at 300. 1200 is fine though, perhaps oddly. I'll report back
    That is a bit odd, but I can make a 1200 baud version this weekend if it does not load. I don't know if it makes a difference if you feed the wav to the serial port (use tape drive 2) but that would probably involve creating a new cable..

    I am interested in the disk imaging software you are working on transferring.

  5. #15

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    I get no response from your WAV unfortunately, perhaps I need to explain my machine a bit more.

    It's been modified with a non-standard monitor called 'Supervisor' that allows a 1-5 menu choice at boot:

    1 = boot from Micropolis drive 0
    2 = ditto but slightly different, I wondered if it would boot from drive 1 but no,
    3 = monitor
    4 = boot ROMPAC
    5 = nothing that I've found, though I've dumped the ROMs for later inspection.

    It also has 3 custom buttons fitted that invert the screen, select 300 baud RS232 and select 1200 baud cassette. I do have the serial umbilical with both cassette leads but I'm not entirely sure unit 2 works or that if none of the buttons are pressed then the SE T= commands are honoured. Certainly a 1200 baud WAV won't load unless I have the right button pressed. Also the LED on the cassette interface only dims and flashes with cassette 1 connected up.

    It's a bit of a beast!
    www.binarydinosaurs.co.uk - UK home computer history
    Where RIFA capacitors come to die
    facebook.com/binarydinosaurs

  6. #16

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    Quite a bit of success tonight, and by accident I'm back at the original reason for this thread. Thanks to the MYZ80 CP/M simulator (running on a win7 virtual machine) and a download of the MAC/RMAC 8080 assembler I'd successfully assembled my hacked SOL-20 floppy imaging utility and via the 1200 baud serial link got it to run on the Sorcerer (there's a lot of steps in this which I'll not bore anyone with).

    The utility won't transfer anything though, and I suspect it's crashing. I remembered my stack of ESC newsletters (The European Sorcerer Club) and delved into them looking for answers as to why RS232 under program control might not be working - the original SOL-20 routine I'm modifying uses the console for user prompts AND a pseudo device selectable by the user for transport. The Sorcerer doesn't use pseudo devices and appears to wrap all I/O into two routines called SEND and RECEVE, they simply use whichever device is selected at monitor level with the SE T= command.

    Up until recently I'd been basing my hacking attempts using my original Sorcerer techincal ref and Monitor 1.0. A few days ago the bitsavers archive gave me some hints on the changes to Monitor 1.1 and the extra facilities in the SE T= command around RS232:

    SE T=0 1200 baud cassette
    SE T=1 300 baud cassette
    SE T=2 1200 baud RS232
    SE T=3 300 baud RS232.

    It occurred to me that while I was happily transferring my utility via 1200 baud serial to the monitor with SE T=2 I'd not tried CP/M since discovering these extra functions. Sure enough PIP FOO.BAR=RDR: transfers the whole HEX file (6k) over in a few minutes and writes it to disk.

    (still can't transfer disk images though)

    I also discovered what my 'Supervisor' monitor actually is. It was written by a bloke called Nigel Yeo and it's designed to NOT reset the machine in the event of a crash. Usually with the Exidy monitor pressing both RESET keys will totally reset the box and lose whatever you were working on. Instead the Supervisor halts the machine and presents the 5 options I mentioned in my last message meaning you can save work or maybe fix why it crashed. The 5 options are:

    1 - cold boot from disk
    2 - warm boot from disk
    3 - monitor
    4 - cold boot ROMPAC
    5 - warm boot ROMPAC

    And now it's time to give it a rest for the night.
    www.binarydinosaurs.co.uk - UK home computer history
    Where RIFA capacitors come to die
    facebook.com/binarydinosaurs

  7. #17

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    >>Up until recently I'd been basing my hacking attempts using my original Sorcerer techincal ref and Monitor 1.0. A few days ago the bitsavers archive gave me some hints on the changes to Monitor 1.1 and the extra facilities in the SE T= command around RS232:


    The first few pages of this document describe a whole bunch of issues with monitor 1.0 and the serial port.
    https://archive.org/details/Sorcerer..._Exidy/page/n0

  8. #18

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    Thanks to the talented dave_m on this site, who has been restoring my Sorcerers to working glory, I am about to start to try to preserve my Exidy Sorcerer disks too. I have many 5 1/4inch disks and many 8 inch disks.

    Can I short circuit the extended research you have done and ask what you current thinking is about the best way to do this?

    Until now I had been anticipating writing something to read sectors from the disk and transfer them via the serial port or via the parallel port to another machine and then convert that raw sector data into some sort of format readable on modern machines.

    Sounds like you have been making significant progress though on finding simpler way than building it all from scratch though?

    Andrew

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by dutchacorn View Post
    That is a bit odd, but I can make a 1200 baud version this weekend if it does not load. I don't know if it makes a difference if you feed the wav to the serial port (use tape drive 2) but that would probably involve creating a new cable..

    I am interested in the disk imaging software you are working on transferring.
    The Modem7 program resists conversion to tape. I found the version I saved loads ok, but does not work. So it takes a bit more investigation.

    BTW if I press reset it will bring you to the monitor but it does not clear the memory. In fact that is my way of getting to monitor from CP/M and save the program loaded in CP/M to tape.

  10. #20

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    Ah, the way the writeup for Supervisor 1.1 reads a RESET would clear RAM which is why the warm boot back to CP/M was a Good Thing. Can Monitor 1.1 Sorcerers do that?

    Quote Originally Posted by flibbledeedo
    The first few pages of this document describe a whole bunch of issues with monitor 1.0 and the serial port.


    Yes, I did wonder if mine had those issues until I found the description for my monitor in the ESC newsletters. It's definitely 1.1 but some of the SE T options are hard-wired to buttons on the keyboard so I can't do 300 baud cassette for example. Or at least I think I can't.

    Quote Originally Posted by flibbledeedo
    Sounds like you have been making significant progress though on finding simpler way than building it all from scratch though?


    I've been working on converting a SOL-20 program that does just what you mention from deramp.com, it reads disk sectors then squirts them out the serial port via XMODEM so you end up with a raw image of the disk. My main trouble with that is the SOL uses pseudo ports for redirecting I/O while still maintaining a console.

    Easy, you think. The Sorcerer's technical ref with 1.1 additions says I should be able to use the SEND and RECEVE entry points for the console (which works) as well as INTAPE and OUTTAPE for RS232 (SE T=2) but so far I've had no luck with that. I've been trying to add in routines from a Dumb Terminal program in the Sorcery Brews booklet on bitsavers since I know that works serially to a PC. Problem there is the SOL-20 program is written in 8080 assembler while the Brews code is in Z80 and uses the BIT mnemonic which doesn't exist in 8080. My assembly isn't THAT good that I can just substitute extra 8080 code to do the same thing without a lot of reading and testing.

    The first thing the SOL program does after selecting which pseudo port you want to use (my version only accepts '1' for RS232) is wait for a handshake byte from the receiving end. The Dumb Terminal program gets a byte from the serial port like this:

    Code:
    IN    A,(0FDH)   ;char received?
    BIT   1,A        ;
    JR    Z,LOOP-$   ;loop if nothing
    IN    A,(0FCH)   ;get incoming char
    My google-fu has let me down for finding 8080 code that replaces the BIT mnemonic but I think I can do something similar with ORA which should attempt to set a bit then clear or set the Z flag if it was successful or not. Maybe I might not be explaining myself too well here.
    www.binarydinosaurs.co.uk - UK home computer history
    Where RIFA capacitors come to die
    facebook.com/binarydinosaurs

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