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Old 28 April 2002, 13:34   #41
andreas
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Arrow Arctic Fox installer available!

Hey,

I don't think anyone of you guys has already noticed it: JOTD finished his Arctic Fox installer.
Unfortunately, without an original image of the disk this won't work out. I tried to fix the overdump to a correct size, and renamed the disk to "Arctic Fox Disk 1", but the installer didn't accept it as a working disk.

So now we have the installer, but no suitable disk to create the installer from, or do we have?
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Old 29 April 2002, 05:55   #42
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Post Herndon HLS Duplication

Galahad missed one common protection on his (great!) list, the one on Plutos, Leisure Suit Larry, California Games, Blockbuster etc. There is a 297 byte file named as 3 spaces " " on the disk. Track 1 is read and decoded using a custom MFM decoder and one sector from the track contains an error at the Dos level.

It uses self modifying code to decrypt itself using prefetch tricks, and after the first pass it changes the text at the top of itself to "Herndon HLS Duplication". It then locks the disk, performs a dos.Info() call and reads track 1 from the disk. Then several checksums just after the track reading code are done which decrypt the rest of the file.

It is quite a pain to patch due to the checksums and only works on a 68000 without lots of degrade/cache disabling type tricks. I believe it is one of the most common early protection schemes (1987-1988) and I have seen it on lots of games in my collection!

BTW, I think a big listing of all these (and how to bypass!) would make a very interesting read!
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Old 29 April 2002, 06:04   #43
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Yes I would be interested in this kind of info myself
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Old 29 April 2002, 14:27   #44
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Stick out tongue

I'd rather be interested in an image of the original
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Old 29 April 2002, 15:36   #45
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Well, you will *eventually* get one, due to it being dumped by our tools by the same person that submitted it to JFF. Don't ask me how long it will take before you can use it though
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Old 29 April 2002, 19:27   #46
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hehe
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Old 25 June 2002, 18:26   #47
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Floppy disk

Check the Zone and let me know if anyone can get this to work. Using KS1.0 I got it a little further than the other versions out there, but it still appears broken.
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Old 25 June 2002, 19:58   #48
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Thanks for uploading.
Yes, this disk won't go beyond Track 61.
If I'm not completely wrong, it was the same track it stopped on the common dumps.
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Old 25 June 2002, 20:03   #49
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Quote:
Originally posted by andreas
Thanks for uploading.
Yes, this disk won't go beyond Track 61.
If I'm not completely wrong, it was the same track it stopped on the common dumps.
Did you get it to the Dynamix title screen? I managed to get it that far. Maybe now that crack patch text that Twistin' posted will work on this image?
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Old 25 June 2002, 22:06   #50
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Yes I could get to this screen. Did you create the rawread dump from an ORIGINAL? If yes, please try to use the new HD installer from JOTD.
Even your disk you've just uploaded isn't accepted by the installer. I analysed the script but couldn't find any reason WHY it bails out. They must do a certain kind of raw track structure check there, methinks...
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Old 27 June 2002, 18:50   #51
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For all the energy that has been expended by a few of you in getting an original or cracked image of Arctic Fox, has it ever seriously occurred to those of you owning Amigas to spend $5 or $10 to buy the original?

It's obviously worth buying if you've spent nearly 6 months yearning for it in this thread. A quick google search will bring up at least 2 Amiga stores (Vintage Computers, US; Valleysoft, Canada) selling the game for the paltry amounts I mentioned above. I'm sure it can be found as cheaply and closer to home for those outside North America in secondhand forums like Amibench.

Just a (heretic sort of) thought........send flames to the usual place!
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Old 27 June 2002, 19:04   #52
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Yes you make valid points Shadowen, but I think in this case it's more the fact of being able to do it and of course to see if it can be made HD installable as well

I think by now this has become a challenge a hurdle to get over
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Old 27 June 2002, 23:46   #53
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Well, I can tell you that no software copier or ripper will write an image of an original Arctic Fox disk perfectly unless it can vary the speed of the source drive in a preordained fashion, on a track-by-track basis, like a tracer machine. The CAPS people hope to develop hardware that can do this (or at least achieve the same end). However, without an original disk this is all academic now isn't it?!

Last edited by DrBong; 28 June 2002 at 21:07.
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Old 28 June 2002, 00:38   #54
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Quote:
Originally posted by Shadowen
Well, I can tell you that no software copier or ripper will image an original Arctic Fox disk perfectly unless it can vary the speed of the source drive in a preordained fashion, on a track-by-track basis, like a tracer machine. The CAPS people claim that their tool can do this. However, without an original disk this is all academic now isn't it?!
ProjectD has a parameter for Arctic Fox that claims to duplicate the protection. I assume this is what my backup copy used. I managed to get to the choose your tank screen once using the rawread copy I made, which makes me wonder if it's not a floppy emulation problem? Otherwise, wouldn't we have the exact same results each time in WinUAE?
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Old 28 June 2002, 10:26   #55
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Quote:
Originally posted by Shadowen
The CAPS people claim that their tool can do this. However, without an original disk this is all academic now isn't it?!
No, we don't claim that. You cannot vary the drive in most (if not nearly all) Amiga's. But that is beside the point - we don't need to.

I suppose you could say - "we claim we don't need to do that".

There is tons of stuff on the WIP pages about this, but basically our tool reads disks in such a way that it can read anything*. You just can't write these tracks. After all - what is the point in a game having tracks that it cannot itself read?

* +/- 15% of normal Amiga density - nothing has gone close to this in 1000's of disks dumped - and I doubt we would see it seeing as the Amiga cannot read outside this range - and so the game would not work / be able to use it.

Anyway - don't worry - we have had the original for ages and it is dumped and works.

Last edited by fiath; 28 June 2002 at 10:49.
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Old 28 June 2002, 20:40   #56
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@Fiath

You have my apologies- I was jumping the gun a little (I was at work and had to type in a hurry from memory). I wasn't merely talking about your software imaging tool, though. The wanted section on the CAPS page hints that a hardware/software solution will be developed if the necessary information/tools can be provided so that floppy drives (normal or adjustable) can achieve the feats of tracer machines for those games that cannot be physically re-mastered at present (There are also references to hardware in the WIP section. Am I reading too much into all the snippets?). If so, I imagine that any hardware/software solution developed will probably vary drive speed for physical re-mastering of said disks to be successful.

I also missed a couple of critical words out in my previous post and meant to refer to writing an image back to disk as opposed to dumping an image for the purpose of anything but (i.e. emulation etc.). As you said, you can't write tracks back (yet!). However, I'm sure that hardware such as the Burst Nibbler on C64 can be reproduced for Amiga.....just need some brilliant people on Amiga (like the C64 Retro Replay developers perhaps) to take an interest in this sort of project. Burst Nibbler had a phenomenal rate of success in reproducing copy protected disks on the C64, with failure being in the order of 1%.


> You cannot vary the drive in most (if not nearly all) Amiga's.

Copiers using dedicated parameters and hardware vary the speeds of normal Amiga drives in writing tracks, don't they? 3rd party Amiga floppy drives also exist where you can vary the speed of writing for each track (as rare as they are).

Anyway, this has gone far away from my original point, which was that if people owning an Amiga want Arctic Fox (or any other uncopiable game) so badly, then why not just buy it rather than spend months or years in threads hoping that someone will deliver them a free image. Few games fall into this category to begin with and even fewer would be impossible to source out or unreasonably priced.
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Old 28 June 2002, 21:04   #57
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@Dpainter

>ProjectD has a parameter for Arctic Fox that claims to duplicate the protection. I assume this is what my backup copy used. I managed to get to the choose your tank screen once >using the rawread copy I made, which makes me wonder if it's not a floppy emulation problem? Otherwise, wouldn't we have the exact same results each time in WinUAE?

Whole host of potential problems there. First off, you're trying to image a 2nd generation copy that may be on low quality/age-degraded media to begin with. Also, every time you try to image a disk with software (even using the same drive), you can get slightly different results on each track, thus producing structurally different images (good example of this is MFMWarp which will give you different size warp images on multiple warps of the same disk using the same drive; usually doesn't take many warps to get a bad image of a warp-able disk). With things like this interacting with a good but still not 100% emulator, it gets very hard to pinpoint where the problems may lie. However, given that you don't have a physical original, my money is on problems occurring way before you get to the emulator.
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Old 28 June 2002, 22:05   #58
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Quote:
Originally posted by Shadowen
Anyway, this has gone far away from my original point, which was that if people owning an Amiga want Arctic Fox (or any other uncopiable game) so badly, then why not just buy it rather than spend months or years in threads hoping that someone will deliver them a free image. Few games fall into this category to begin with and even fewer would be impossible to source out or unreasonably priced.
Well, you have to understand that we ARE doing this. Mind you, every one of us who wants Arctic Fox hasn't purchased it, but that's beside the point. We are looking for a cracked, copyable version of this game so that it can be emulated or moved around to/from a real Amiga. Buying a copy will just yield yet another copy-protected game on my shelf. I collect originals anyhow. Quite a number of games on my MIA list are games which I own original copies of, but need a copy dumped. And this should be assumed for any of us here who spend a lot of effort trying to locate versions that are spreadable.
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Old 28 June 2002, 22:15   #59
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Quote:
Originally posted by fiath
Anyway - don't worry - we have had the original for ages and it is dumped and works.
OK, don't torment us any longer: show us the in-game screenshots from Arctic Fox on an Amiga emulator, and don't try to fool us with the Atari ST version.
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Old 28 June 2002, 23:17   #60
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@Twistin'
Well, chances are there isn't a cracked version if one hasn't turned up to this point. You know that not every Amiga game has been cracked. So how has this been dealt with in the past here? Well, one good way I've seen is that a few of you kindly ask a cracker like Codetapper if he will take on the job. Then if the task is accepted, someone owning the original sends the cracker the disk. In the case of Arctic Fox, it will probably have to be snail-mailed.

A good alternative is that again someone owning the original uses the WHDLoad installer and puts it in the Zone.

In the absence of a cracked version done at release (which probably won't surface anytime soon if it does exist), the bottom line is that an original copy is needed by someone here. A cracked version may turn up tomorrow, but how much of a betting man are you?! ;-)
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