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Thread: Sierra original 720K floppies (KQ1, LSL1)

  1. #1
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    Default Sierra original 720K floppies (KQ1, LSL1)

    Hi all,
    I've got original copies of KQ1 and LSL1 on 720k floppy. I've noticed when I dump them via Kryoflux there are bad sectors on tracks 78 on both disks. (From what I see track 78 is in the unused are of the disk right?) These disks on a PII under modos 6.22 work fine. It detects its an original disk and the copy protection then asks for a game disk to be inserted and once enter is pressed the game files up. No problems.

    The problem is when I do the same on my IBM 5170. I press enter when asked for original disk, iit accepts it (so looks like copy protection is working) then ask for the game disk and once enter is pressed it just sits there with the floppy drive light on and the only way to get out of it is to turn the IBM off and on again.

    I've cleaned my drive. I don't have problems with other games. Any idea why it's hanging?

  2. #2

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    When I run it from the HD the only questions I get are to verify your age.
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

  3. #3
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    Hello,

    I assume by '720k floppy' you're referring to DD 3.5" disks.

    Either way, track 78 should be a normal track, and should have the normal sector layout.

    My understanding is that ONE of the methods used for copy protection is to tweak the format, so that there are 'bad' sectors. BUT, the sectors may not be 'bad' in the usual sense, then may have a different sector number (i.e. something other than 1-9), or may be different in some other way. So, when the normal OS functions try to read the sector, they get an error, but a special function in the prog which knows what to expect and maybe bypasses some of the 'normal' functions and thereby DOES actually read something there.

    Id be interested to know what the kryoflux says about the nature of the 'bad sectors'. Does it give any detail. If the kryoflux does in fact read the sector, what does it say is there?

    What version of DOS is the 5170 using? Maybe this system is NOT so capable of reading the tweaked sector. Sounds like it's trying to, and not (immed ?) getting an error, but is not completing the job. Could be that the head alignment is ever so slightly out so that the read isn't perfect?

    Geoff
    Vintage Devices: Epson HX-20/TF-20, Amstrad PCW 8256 (with extras), 386 and 486 PCs with 5.25 and 3.5 floppy drives, Pentium 75 with Roland LAPC-I midi card

  4. #4
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    I seem to recall stories of the copy protection failing on certain 5170s. Since you can prove ownership of the originals, is it acceptable to download a cracked copy and run that instead on your 5170 to ensure your 5170 is not at fault?
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  5. #5
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    ok thanks for the info. Yeah someone else did mention that to I was investigating but did not find anything solid. Strange.

    Trixter, any ideas why it fails? Timing?

    I'll look for a cracked copy and see how that runs..

  6. #6
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    I don't recall the specifics of the stories, sorry. It might be a factor if your 5170 is 6MHz or 8MHz.

    If the cracked copies also don't work, then you have something to investigate on your 5170.
    Offering a bounty for:
    - A working Sanyo MBC-775, Olivetti M24, or Logabax 1600
    - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)

  7. #7
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    Hi, Yes my system is a 8mhz IBM 5170. I just tried a cracked version on 720K floppy and works flawlessly. It seems to only affect 720k floppies as my original 360k floppy work perfectly and accept the copy protection. Very strange.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeoffB17 View Post
    Hello,

    I assume by '720k floppy' you're referring to DD 3.5" disks.

    Either way, track 78 should be a normal track, and should have the normal sector layout.

    My understanding is that ONE of the methods used for copy protection is to tweak the format, so that there are 'bad' sectors. BUT, the sectors may not be 'bad' in the usual sense, then may have a different sector number (i.e. something other than 1-9), or may be different in some other way. So, when the normal OS functions try to read the sector, they get an error, but a special function in the prog which knows what to expect and maybe bypasses some of the 'normal' functions and thereby DOES actually read something there.

    Id be interested to know what the kryoflux says about the nature of the 'bad sectors'. Does it give any detail. If the kryoflux does in fact read the sector, what does it say is there?

    What version of DOS is the 5170 using? Maybe this system is NOT so capable of reading the tweaked sector. Sounds like it's trying to, and not (immed ?) getting an error, but is not completing the job. Could be that the head alignment is ever so slightly out so that the read isn't perfect?

    Geoff
    Hi Geoff, tracks 78 are damaged but investigating those tracks they are blank so should not affect the games. I think its just a coincidence that both KQ2 and LSL1 disks have the same bad sectors on track 78. I've also heard this is quite common. The KF makes these sectors bad as they are bad. I guess at the flux level it will contain data and opening the image in a hex editor shows random characters on track 78.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by robbo007 View Post
    Hi, Yes my system is a 8mhz IBM 5170. I just tried a cracked version on 720K floppy and works flawlessly. It seems to only affect 720k floppies as my original 360k floppy work perfectly and accept the copy protection. Very strange.
    Is it possible that the original 720K disk is no longer original? By that I mean could the files from the two 360K disks have been copied at some point to that 720K disk for whatever reason? If that's the case the copy protection could fail since the game is going to look for a second disk.

    Alternatively, have you tried ejecting the disk when it asks for the game disk and then re-inserting it and then pressing enter?
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

  10. #10

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    Didn’t some games have copy protection where it would move (or maybe edit) a file from the floppy to the hdd, and you had to uninstall the game (so it would copy that file back to the floppy) to be able to install the game again?

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