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View Poll Results: Are you interested in the CF project?

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  • Yes! I'll be there and build one!

    4 25.00%
  • Yes, and bring a laser cut mounting plate for me!

    8 50.00%
  • Yes, but I won't be at VCF East

    4 25.00%
  • No, but I'll totally hang out at the hackerspace

    0 0%
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Thread: VCF East 2019 Project: CF and CP/M for the 8085 SBC!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Central VA
    Posts
    4,380

    Default VCF East 2019 Project: CF and CP/M for the 8085 SBC!



    This year's VCF East workshop project will be a CompactFlash interface for last year's 8085 SBC rev 3! I have the above-pictured CF interface debugged and a first draft implementation of CP/M 2.2 running on it. There's some cleanup work to be done, and I'm going to write some utilities for both CP/M and ROM-FS, but I feel like it's complete enough to announce it!

    Here's a closeup of the CF interface:



    It's a pretty simple implementation, and I've chosen the default port addresses to be compatible with Grant Searle's Multicomp -- I believe the RC2014 CF interface follows that standard, too. CP/M implementation was "the old fashioned way," by the CP/M alteration guide, using an unmodified DRI CP/M 2.2 master distribution disk.

    I'll be bringing 50 kits for the CF interface, as well as some additional 8085 SBC rev 3 kits for those who didn't get to build one last year. The majority of the CF interface kits will have the CF socket soldered down ahead of time, so there is no surface mount soldering required! If you want to try your hand at soldering the connector, there will be a very limited number of boards without the connector installed. Industrial Toshiba 64MB CF cards will be provided with CP/M preloaded so that no one has to bring it up by hand (which took around a week, not exactly a workshop project!).

    The middle board in that stack is an experimental Intel 8255 parallel I/O board I'm working on. I don't know if I'll have it ready for VCF East, but if I do, I'll bring kits for it as well.

    I laser cut a little acrylic baseplate/connection shield for my personal 8085 SBC, I got tired of worrying about shorting it out on stuff when it's on the workbench. If there's interest in those, I can try and run a bunch more at the local makerspace and bring them too.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Middletown, Maryland USA
    Posts
    148

    Default

    Fantastic, glitch! I'd definitely like a laser-cut mounting plat for mine, as well. I really love that SBC.

  3. #3

    Default

    Excellent. I am looking forward to it. I wanna make it, I wanna mount it and I wanna run it. Should I bring my SBC?

    Bob Flanders

  4. #4

    Default

    I'm good for a CF board. I have some CF chips, will you be able to "copy" to them in some way? Funny thing, to have a *pair* of CF boards? or is there another way to share the CF interface? This technology is too *new* for me to be familiar with.

    On the baseplate, how about printing some paper templates? Then I can cut one from whatever materials I wish. I save old plastic packing for such purposes - say, an old salad takeout dish. It's the easiest source for thin transparent plastic sheet.

    Herb Johnson
    \"Dr.\" S-100: archives of S-100 documents, also
    8-inch floppy drives and drive documents

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Central VA
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    Default

    Yes, if you want to bring your own CF cards, I can copy the image over to them. You can use a USB reader and do the copying on a modern computer, or as you suggested plug in two CF interfaces and use a utility to block copy between them. I'll also make the final images available online, in case anyone is doing this from scratch or someone frags their CF card!

    I may eventually do a Glitchbus board with dual CF sockets, software-wise it'd be like two boards, one addressed immediately after the other. The 3M CF sockets I'm using aren't particularly cheap (around $5 each) and I figured, why put two on, make the board more complicated and expensive, just to have most people use a single CF card anyway? All but the smallest CF cards are big enough to have more than one CP/M "partition" defined (e.g. several drive letters on a single CF card).

    I can make paper templates available if folks want them, though the laser cut versions are 1/8" acrylic, and fairly rigid. They make for a nice mount! You could certainly cut one from acrylic using either a plastic gouge or by sawing, and drill the mounting holes, using a template.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Central VA
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    Additionally, good news! I had time to build and test the second prototype run of the 8255 parallel interface board, so that will make it onto tomorrow's circuit board order. I should have a quantity of 8255 board kits available at VCF East, plus bare boards. They look roughly like this:



    That's the first prototype rendering, so the final board is a little different, but the component placement is all the same. Half the board is prototype area, so you can do your own thing without having to implement the 8255 over and over.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Central VA
    Posts
    4,380

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    Quote Originally Posted by semuhphor View Post
    Excellent. I am looking forward to it. I wanna make it, I wanna mount it and I wanna run it. Should I bring my SBC?

    Bob Flanders
    YES! If you built an 8085 SBC rev 3 last year, definitely bring it this year! In addition to getting to test the CF interface with your very own board, we'll be able to run updates on the EEPROM to load a newer version of GWMON-80 and the CP/M autoboot loader. If something goes wrong, I can reprogram the EEPROM in one of my testbed 8085 SBCs.

    Additionally, if you built an 8085 SBC rev 3 at home, from a kit or bare board, and haven't gotten it working, bring it to the workshop and we'll get it going.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Central VA
    Posts
    4,380

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    Circuit boards ordered! Should have them in about a week, then I can begin that wonderful timesink that is...packing kits!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Central VA
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    All kits are packed! I'll be bringing 52 CompactFlash interfaces to VCF East next weekend. Six of them are available with the CF socket not soldered down, for those who want to try surface mount soldering.

    Kit price is $40, which includes the full kit, CF card with CP/M 2.2, and mounting hardware for the 8085 SBC rev 3. As we did last year, boards will be sold only for assembly at VCF East until Sunday, to give everyone who wants to build one a fair chance at getting one.

    I will also be bringing 10 8085 SBC rev 3 full parts kits, and should have kits together for the 8255-based parallel interface pictured above.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Posts
    3

    Default

    I'm excited for this one! I just got back from VCF Southeast, and won't be making it to NJ this time, but I will buy a board once you put it on Tindie.

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