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Old 21 March 2020, 15:25   #1
mousehouse
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Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Netherlands
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A2386SX bridgeboard setup troubles

Hi all,

As we're all staying inside anyway I decided to dust off my A2386SX bridgeboard and give it a spin. I've got Janus 2.1 installed (or so I believe) and can see and access the BIOS of the PC in PC Mono.

It displays "invalid configuration information" even though the BIOS settings all seem good (only floppy drive A set to 720k, floppy B and HDs set to NONE).

Janus Handler Version 36.85
Janus Library Version 36.83

Then an error "Press X to run SETUP, F1 to continue, or use PCReset to retry after which the system sort of halts, waits, ... after you press F1.

I cannot get it to boot of an external Amiga floppy drive (720/880). The BIOS seems to recognise the drive, I can hear it access the drive briefly at reboot and it seems to try to boot from it but no luck. I've created 720k MSDOS 5 install floppies on a PC but they are not guaranteed to work. PCPrefs set to D000, Mono and A: to EXTERNAL.

Now I've downloaded two PCem hardfiles from TheZone (PCHDF MSDOS 6.22) but I cannot get anything booting on the card.

A2386SX is seen in Show Config and WhichAmiga
Jdisk.device is in DEVS:
Janus.library is in SYS:Expansion with the tooltypes
SYS:PC contains the PCColor/PCMono/PCReset/PCPrefs programs
SYS:PC/System contains some small files including pc.boot, pc.boot.2386sx, aboot.ctrl, 2500prefs and ScanCode.table
Binddrivers is in the startup-sequence

Questions!
- What should be in my startup-sequence for the BB to work?
- How do I start DOSServ from the startup-sequence?
- Does anybody have a known working bridgeboard hardfile that I can download and try to skip the floppy drive issue?

Any help appreciated...


edit:
My machine is an A3000 with OS3.9 and an 68060 CPU
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Old 22 March 2020, 16:19   #2
mousehouse
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I've made a little progress... Swapped the floppy drive for a true PC 1.44MB drive I pulled from another machine, and changed the floppy ribbon cable. The one from the PC has a different twist to it compared to the one I was using.

Fixed the "invalid configuration data" error by changing the graphics type in the BIOS to match the setting in PCprefs (choose MONO in the BIOS if you use the PCmono application on your workbench screen).

Found a set of HD MSDOS 6.2 floppies from Dell in my floppy stash, can hear the drive read a few sectors and I get all the way to:

"Starting MSDOS..."

Then it hangs, floppy light stays on. C+A+DEL does not work, needs a PCreset.

Any ideas?
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Old 22 March 2020, 18:32   #3
mousehouse
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Ok, final update! I got it working by reinstalling janus 2.1. There is an error in the install script which does something with "swapcolors". I removed that and reinstalled. Now MSDOS installs on my hardfile!

w00t :-)

All of this to find out Fritz3 needs a VGA card... bummer...
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Old 24 March 2020, 22:58   #4
Unicorn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mousehouse View Post
Ok, final update! I got it working by reinstalling janus 2.1. There is an error in the install script which does something with "swapcolors". I removed that and reinstalled. Now MSDOS installs on my hardfile!

w00t :-)

All of this to find out Fritz3 needs a VGA card... bummer...
Sorry I could not help due to my A2386SX having a battery leak. It is pretty bad and might kill the board.

I remember some of the issues with Janus installs.

Well done getting some function going.
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Old 30 March 2020, 19:50   #5
mousehouse
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Location: Netherlands
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Yeah DOS6 runs... it took me ~3 minutes to remember how much I hated that OS. Just watching the installer do it's thing is bringing back bad memories...

Good luck with your card! If you're not very good at hardware repairs yourself (like me) there are quite a few good repair guys around... They're valuable boards it seems these 386SX ones.
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