Strange floppy behaviour

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netanel_h
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Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:22 am

Hey, I purchased the SDCard HxC Floppy Emulator, in try to activate old garage machine which has failed 720kb floppy drive.

I tried to make an image from the floppy (from 1990) with Hxc Floppy Software (floppy disk dump), and although image was created successfully, there was something strange I want to discuss before the real test with the real machine (will be on Sunday).

Attached screenshot of the issue, It looks like something mystery in the floppy, which has 1 special line (data) in the right part, when all the other data is in the left side, and in the output it was copied to the left part. I am afraid it is a specail floppy-protect procedure, that may prevent the machine from start.

Does anybody know about such a strange behaviour of a floppy and how to deal with it?

I can upload file-image of the floopy (created by dd-linux) and the hfe file, if it would be able to help.
Attachments
screenshot-1.JPG
screenshot of the issue
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Jeff
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Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by Jeff » Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:31 am

netanel_h wrote:Hey, I purchased the SDCard HxC Floppy Emulator, in try to activate old garage machine which has failed 720kb floppy drive.

I tried to make an image from the floppy (from 1990) with Hxc Floppy Software (floppy disk dump), and although image was created successfully, there was something strange I want to discuss before the real test with the real machine (will be on Sunday).

Attached screenshot of the issue, It looks like something mystery in the floppy, which has 1 special line (data) in the right part, when all the other data is in the left side, and in the output it was copied to the left part. I am afraid it is a specail floppy-protect procedure, that may prevent the machine from start.

Does anybody know about such a strange behaviour of a floppy and how to deal with it?

I can upload file-image of the floopy (created by dd-linux) and the hfe file, if it would be able to help.
Send me the floppy images (img + HFE) by email, i will have a look.
If possible remake an floppy dump and export into the AFI format. after send me this one too.

http://hxc2001.free.fr/imiel.htm

What is this "garage machine" ?

netanel_h
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:06 am

FIles were sent by email.
Jeff wrote: What is this "garage machine" ?
It called "sun mcs 2000 sl".

Jeff
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Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by Jeff » Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:15 pm

netanel_h wrote:Hey, I purchased the SDCard HxC Floppy Emulator, in try to activate old garage machine which has failed 720kb floppy drive.

I tried to make an image from the floppy (from 1990) with Hxc Floppy Software (floppy disk dump), and although image was created successfully, there was something strange I want to discuss before the real test with the real machine (will be on Sunday).

Attached screenshot of the issue, It looks like something mystery in the floppy, which has 1 special line (data) in the right part, when all the other data is in the left side, and in the output it was copied to the left part. I am afraid it is a specail floppy-protect procedure, that may prevent the machine from start.

Does anybody know about such a strange behaviour of a floppy and how to deal with it?

I can upload file-image of the floopy (created by dd-linux) and the hfe file, if it would be able to help.
I got the image file, and without hesitation i can tell that this is a copy protection.
The track 9 side 0 have 16 sectors "mixed" together (the start of the next sector is in the data part of the previous one).
This is a common protection used on video game disk (Atari ST...).
Some game have up to 255 sectors in one track -> doesn't fit on a normal track if you don't mix them. By this way you cannot copy the floppy disk with an normal computer.

Regarding the dump you have done, this is not exactly the real track layout of the disk, anyway the protection should be fooled because all 16 sectors are on the virtual track (this track contain more data than the others in the hfe file) .
So try the HFE file, it may work. (Don't forget to change the HFE interface mode to Shugart)

Remember that the protection is at the track 9 -> the hxc show the track number on the lcd during reading. This may help to understand if the protection is working or not.
if the garage machine hang at the track 9, other dump tool/solution should be used. (more details if needed).
(there are maybe something else at the track 79...)

Question : Was this floppy disk formatted/created by the machine or is this an original disk ?

netanel_h
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:34 pm

Jeff wrote:Question : Was this floppy disk formatted/created by the machine or is this an original disk ?
The disk is the original, machine can't foramt or do anything with the floppy, only read it (I suppose).

Thanks for your respone, hope on Sunday will be good news.

netanel_h
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Sun Feb 19, 2012 2:59 pm

Test passed and IT WORKS!
There was no need to any modification, out of set the jumper to Shugart-non-twisted. Dumping of the floppy with floppy disk dump option and export it to the hfe format was enough to do the magic and bypass the floppy copy-protection.
Thank you very much, I will post a new thread with pictures in the showroom with some days, my digital camera contributed its 128mb memory card for the project, so I didn't have camera this morning.

Jeff
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Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by Jeff » Sun Feb 19, 2012 7:12 pm

netanel_h wrote:Test passed and IT WORKS!
There was no need to any modification, out of set the jumper to Shugart-non-twisted. Dumping of the floppy with floppy disk dump option and export it to the hfe format was enough to do the magic and bypass the floppy copy-protection.
Thank you very much, I will post a new thread with pictures in the showroom with some days, my digital camera contributed its 128mb memory card for the project, so I didn't have camera this morning.
Perfect ! :D
I am waiting for the pictures (and maybe a small videos ? ;) )

netanel_h
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Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Thu Feb 23, 2012 11:49 pm

Pictures -
http://torlus.com/floppy/forum/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=874

As opening the machine to take pictures caused machine suddenly to stop working, I wasn't in good temprt to take video, maybe in the future.

giorgio
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Joined: Fri May 18, 2012 6:00 pm

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by giorgio » Sun May 20, 2012 9:52 pm

Hi mate,I read your remarkable acheivements regarding the MSC200sl floppy emulation on torlus.com forum I also have the MCS2000SL hardware, however the second floppy would not read at all.Are you able to help me?Thanks in advance!
Giorgio
IMG_0431.JPG
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Last edited by giorgio on Sun May 20, 2012 10:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

netanel_h
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Sun May 20, 2012 10:01 pm

giorgio wrote:Hi mate,I read your remarkable acheivements regarding the MSC200sl floppy emulation on torlus.com forum I also have the MCS2000SL hardware, however the second floppy would not read at all.Are you able to help me?Thanks in advance!
Giorgio
What do you mean in "the second floppy"; did you try to copy the old floppy to a new one?

giorgio
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Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by giorgio » Sun May 20, 2012 10:13 pm

I have 2 floppy drives (left and right). It appears one of them is a booting OS. When it comes to loading the second floppy I get the error, attached.

The hardware very similar. The model is exactly the same as yours.

P.S. Apologies, in the interest of being precise I had to edit this message.

netanel_h
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Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Sun May 20, 2012 10:18 pm

I had only one 720kb floppy which boots the machine, without need to replace floppies in the middle. By the way, you have 1024k memory, I had only 768k...

giorgio
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Joined: Fri May 18, 2012 6:00 pm

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by giorgio » Sun May 20, 2012 10:23 pm

Would it be possible to try your image file?

I know it would take ages for me to get to where you are, however, if I have the image in hand it will be motivating to try the emulation route.

By the way, thanks for the quick response!

netanel_h
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:01 am

Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by netanel_h » Sun May 20, 2012 10:32 pm

Any image of the floopy (e.g. DD\linux) to an new floppy fails because of the copy-protection (see upwards), only the dumped hfe file works with the HXC emulator, do you have the emulator?
Isn't anyone who still sell the old floppies with the original software in your country? In Israel there is still a company which sells them, however, it's a Hebrew-translated version (and I have only the files of the Hebrew version). If you want the files, please post your email address here.

giorgio
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Re: Strange floppy behaviour

Post by giorgio » Sun May 20, 2012 10:42 pm

Thanks 10x!
My email is gyochev@abv.bg

It is a very good starting point for me, knowing it has been tried and tested. Meanwhile I had a look at eBay - I will purchase a floppy emulator. I would consider using Google translate if this is the only option.

Thanks again!

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