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-   -   Acorn Archimedes Software Preservation (http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=43299)

Interceptor 11 March 2009 22:31

http://www.softpres.org/faq:imaging_disks:requirements :)

mr.vince 11 March 2009 22:32

Hiya, you'd need at least an A1200 or another one with a 68020 or better processor. 8 megs of RAM would be good, although less works if you dump over a parallel connection to a PC running a server software.

EDIT: Damn, a minute to late.

MarkYoungIW 11 March 2009 23:01

@Interceptor & Mr Vince

Thanks for that. Will give it some thought!! Moving house in a fortnight, so probably wont get much done till then, so will keep an eye on Cyclone20 as well and decide what to do once I am moved.

alexh 12 March 2009 15:20

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
IPFs are truly preserved.

Maybe, but access to the data within them is not.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
Now for the lib. It's available for all major platforms.

That's a matter of opinion. UAE on the X-Box, PSP, GP2X etc. are all missing IPF support. If all the SPS guys disappeared over night (unlikely buy hey) then the data is not truly preserved is it?

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
I see that some people are scared because it is not open source

Only scared that it is called 'preservation'.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
I don't see anything stopping anyone from doing the same and archiving the games in another format he likes (if he does not like IPF that is). That would of course mean writing and designing your own format.

A classic response from someone who knows they've already lost the argument ;)

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
Being open source does not mean everything is better.

You are absolutely correct. But it is essential for any true 'preservation' that everything be transparent, open so that there is enough information from the word go so that the data can be recovered by almost anyone, at any time.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
Do you really want to give preservation into the hand of novices, that can code but have no understanding of protections or similar?

Nope.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
Do you want them to mess with the codebase, just because it is open source?

Thats upto them, you don't have to accept their modifications into the mainline of the codebase.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
Do you want them to reverse the library to also write IPFs? To see dozens of IPFs of the very same title, called "alt1", "alt2", "+8", "fixed"...

If by "write" you mean convert from the dump file to an IPF then not particularly.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
In fact, UAE is open source. I have not seen many useful distributions with any functionality I am currently missing.

But it has been ported to many platforms the original author never envisaged. The fact it was open source allowed people to add support for the Wiimote control, access files over WiFi, use the GPU of the X-Box as a P96 framebuffer!

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
I am very sure that if Toni should ever abandon the project, there will not be many people available to fill the gap.

Tell that to my former colleage at Mitel, Brian King.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
But we can make sure, the format itself is consistent, and the data is consistent as well.

I know. I like and respect the work the SPS do. They are all clever people.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
I just do not get the point why this would be a showstopper for preservation.

Because currently no-one can add IPF support to any platform not deemed suitable by SPS. That is not true preservation.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 522599)
We're currently looking into adding a signed digest added to the IPFs so users can be sure they are getting the real deal and not anything forged or changed. Please note that this is not DRM, so please have a read on what signed digests / hashes are used for.

Sounds good. Much better than keeping the plugin closed source IMO.

fiath 12 March 2009 16:27

Quote:

Originally Posted by alexh (Post 522983)
Maybe, but access to the data within them is not.

Yes it is. At the very very worst, you could simply use the library to extract it, but it will never come to that. Even if that was the case, you wouldn't have to worry about bit rot, bad reads, save games, hiscores, viruses - because we have already solved those problems.

Quote:

Because currently no-one can add IPF support to any platform not deemed suitable by SPS. That is not true preservation.
I would argue that it's not a preservation problem that you can't play IPF's on an XBox... :)

We have only have a handful of requests to support these platforms, otherwise we would have ported it already (assuming we can use a legal devkit). I do understand that those people find this frustrating though, but we have to weight the costs and the benefits in everything we do.

Quote:

You are absolutely correct. But it is essential for any true 'preservation' that everything be transparent, open so that there is enough information from the word go so that the data can be recovered by almost anyone, at any time.
As above, the data can be recovered by almost anyone, at any time. However, you do have a valid point in that in an ideal world the source to the IPF library would be available - it's not like we don't realise this... We agree, and that is why we have always said it would be released eventually. The problem is that it is not the right time for us right now. It would cause us problems that we would just rather not deal with at the moment.

As it happens, some of the reasons against releasing the source have dropped away in the last few years. Hopefully many of the others will drop away in the coming years. Unfortunately, there is significant preparitory work that would need to be done to ensure our operations are not impacted. Right now, we just have too much other work to do... like fighting against time to get the data off the originals...

StingRay 12 March 2009 16:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by alexh (Post 522983)
That's a matter of opinion. UAE on the X-Box, PSP, GP2X etc. are all missing IPF support. If all the SPS guys disappeared over night (unlikely buy hey) then the data is not truly preserved is it?

Quite strange logic here! The data IS preserved, the fact that IPF support isn't available for all platforms doesn't mean you can't access the data. Where's the problem to read the data on a system that does support IPF's?

mr.vince 12 March 2009 17:31

Quote:

Originally Posted by StingRay (Post 523059)
Quite strange logic here! The data IS preserved, the fact that IPF support isn't available for all platforms doesn't mean you can't access the data. Where's the problem to read the data on a system that does support IPF's?

Thank you. I also tried to address this by the following:

"I don't see anything stopping anyone from doing the same and archiving the games in another format he likes (if he does not like IPF that is). That would of course mean writing and designing your own format."

I'd like to add that my intention was to say that anyone can take the data from an IPF trough the lib and write it to whatever format he wants to. C20 does that (based on HxC). Easy peasy.

I just dislike complaining about things that are for free. :)

MarkYoungIW 12 March 2009 18:01

Didnt realise this would kick up such a debate on the way things are stored!!

All I was trying to do was to make sure that the Archimedes community took the same active stance that the Amiga community have!!

Once I have decided what kit I will use for dumping, will sucessful dumps be added to the Games list on the SPS site? Only I notice at the moment, nothing other than Amiga stuff is listed.

alexh 12 March 2009 18:15

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 523084)
I just dislike complaining about things that are for free. :)

I'm not complaining, I am nagging ;)

Quote:

Originally Posted by mr.vince (Post 523084)
I'd like to add that my intention was to say that anyone can take the data from an IPF trough the lib and write it to whatever format he wants to. C20 does that (based on HxC). Easy peasy.

Is that true? I thought that the data was not fixed and depending on the contents of the IPF and previous disk commands the lib produced different results for identical accesses? (Simple answer, bare in mind this area is not something I know much about).

Interceptor 12 March 2009 18:37

Quote:

Originally Posted by MarkYoungIW (Post 523096)
Didnt realise this would kick up such a debate on the way things are stored!!

All I was trying to do was to make sure that the Archimedes community took the same active stance that the Amiga community have!!

Once I have decided what kit I will use for dumping, will sucessful dumps be added to the Games list on the SPS site? Only I notice at the moment, nothing other than Amiga stuff is listed.

dont worry mark, you are not being ignored, just blame alex, we do ;)

what happens is we receive the dumps, we then analyse them, and create an IPF from them providing they are in good condition, that is to say no errors or modifications (like high scrore saves etc)

now, becuase of this many dumps dont make the grade and so an ipf isnt released until a good one does turn up. but when it does, alll contributors get the IPF back, not just the contributor of the good one.

HTH

Quote:

Originally Posted by alexh (Post 523104)
I'm not complaining, I am nagging ;)


Is that true? I thought that the data was not fixed and depending on the contents of the IPF and previous disk commands the lib produced different results for identical accesses? (Simple answer, bare in mind this area is not something I know much about).

kinda, there is one instance right now where getting weak data (that that is different each time you read it) is rather clunky, but that will be improved in a later lib release, hopefully the next one, which is a major release.

but yes, the lib is DESIGNED to allow you to extract any and all data for whatever use you want. i.e you can read an IPF and use a disk dumping tool forexample to create and ADF, or EDSK etc, providing your target format supports the data.

mr.vince 12 March 2009 21:48

Quote:

Originally Posted by alexh (Post 523104)
I'm not complaining, I am nagging ;)

Yeah. Just go on stealing other people's time. I wonder how many people have gotten the false impression that something is wrong with IPFs.

Quote:

Originally Posted by alexh (Post 523104)
Is that true? I thought that the data was not fixed and depending on the contents of the IPF and previous disk commands the lib produced different results for identical accesses? (Simple answer, bare in mind this area is not something I know much about).

Well, you should have read + understood the facts before complaining in depth that this is no true preservation... As I said... just take the lib and read the data off the IPF like you'd do from a real disk, then write it to the open source format you've conceived... Is that simple enough? :cool

Charlie 13 March 2009 00:15

Um,
Just in case anyone is still interested in actual data I've started upping some stuff to the Zone!

FWIW:
I honestly don't care in what form RiscOS software / games end up being preserved - just so long as they are!

Yes, having perfect images of original discs must be a good thing in the long-run but right now software for this platform is disappearing into the ether on a daily basis.

At the moment I'd say getting stuff off floppies & onto HDD's in a usable form is for the sake of speed the best way to go: HD-Installing stuff in such a way that it's not dependant on original media.

MarkYoungIW 13 March 2009 10:34

Thanks for this Charlie. Will get dumping my stuff on the zone very soon.......That is unless anyone wants it on their ftp?

Charlie 13 March 2009 11:11

@ MarkYoungIW:
You're welcome.
I'd happily put the lot on my server (see Avatar). It's been in bits for months while having a major upgrade & this would be the impetus to finish it...
...was done months ago but I never quite got round to putting an OS on it - bad Charlie.

MarkYoungIW 13 March 2009 12:39

OK. Back to the thread then.

Lists of:-

Software for originals preservation (currently IPF)

Software known to Hard Drive install (which I have started my list at the beginning)

And I guess .adf's (working and not working stated)

Anyone that knows anyone of archimedes people, please get them involved.

Charlie 13 March 2009 22:57

Oooo, name 'n shame, eh? Who's peculiar habits shall I 'out' today..?

Hmmm, well there's:
Me
You
alexh - no wait, I have a feeling he's reformed...
T.C.
laffer
Retro-Nerd
Belgarath..?
mfletcher
rygar..?
FromWithin..?
OddbOd..?
blade002 - latent?
TCD - bet he is too.
Akira - has leanings..?
Interceptor - scientific interest.
IFW - ditto.
Ian - strong leanings.
tomcat666 - more than scientific interest?

Hey that was fun. There must be other Archie fans lurking about here...

mr.vince 14 March 2009 14:05

Quote:

Originally Posted by Charlie (Post 523245)
I honestly don't care in what form RiscOS software / games end up being preserved - just so long as they are!

Yes, having perfect images of original discs must be a good thing in the long-run but right now software for this platform is disappearing into the ether on a daily basis.

As already mentioned, we do only preserve unmodified sources to ensure we get what the publisher intended to be on the disk.

You can however do both: Keep the disks dry & cool, while you in parallel do installs to HD and backups to CD for the ones that can be installed.

In regard to authenticy, the latter can not be used for long term preservation.

MarkYoungIW 14 March 2009 15:39

I will be getting images of my originals to you as soon as either the Cyclone20 is ready, or I get hold of an amiga.

I think we probably agree its in everyones interest to pursue both methods!!

Although its nice for all of us to be able to run the IPF's either through emulator or HxC on the original machine, its also sensible to install to HD as when you get the machine out for a quick game of Elite or the likes the less setting up, the better!!

I dont know for sure, but would all Acorn titles have been authored through proper disc duplicators!? Software houses like 4th Dimension seems to be the work of one man, so wondering if those titles would have been done in that manner?

cosmicfrog 14 March 2009 16:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by MarkYoungIW (Post 523888)
I I get hold of an amiga.

what a good idea that is :great

get a 1200 or 4000 if you can, you will wonder why you did`t get 1 earlyer

this is typical of the amiga scene it takes "us" well you and charlie to perserve their stuff for them.

but that aside Welcome to these boards you non amiga owning person MarkYoungIW :laughing I`ll watch this with intrest who knows i may even get something to run on an emulator

MarkYoungIW 14 March 2009 19:51

Thinking perhaps a good place to track down people with originals for dumping for IPF's is YouTube!!!

For instance:-

http://www.youtube.com/user/peetvanpeebles

He seems to have a few!!!

Will get on and start contacting some people on YouTube.


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