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Old 31 May 2003, 21:49   #1
Parsec
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WHDLoad - Stuck!

Have just set up my A1200 with Workbench 3.1, and have installed WHDLoad (using CodyJarret's FAQ)

I've downloaded installs for Pacmania and Starglider 2 and tried to set them up. They install fine, and create a disk image from the floppy without problems.

But when I try to run both games WHDLoad crashes with an exception. Pacmania says "Exception - Illegal Instruction" and Starglider 2 says "Exception - Line 1111 Emulator". For Pacmania I've tried the hacked and original (from TOSEC) copy, and Starglider 2 is an original. Both these games load off floppy.

Pacmania manages to get the loading screen up, then it flickers and crashes. Starglider 2 doesn't even get off the Workbench

This is an Amiga Technologies A1200 with 2Meg Chip RAM...

Any ideas?

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Old 31 May 2003, 22:16   #2
BippyM
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Try different WinUAE configs..

Try the attached

Last edited by BippyM; 10 July 2013 at 22:38.
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Old 31 May 2003, 22:16   #3
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OK Some success at last.

Grabbed the HD version of Super Hang-On off BTTR, copied it over the serial link and it works! My first Amiga HD game

The memory requirements listed in the installer for Starglider 2 are too high for my machine (no fastmem) so maybe that's the problem, but there's no explanation for Pacmania...

Will try a few more and see what happens.
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Old 31 May 2003, 22:23   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by bippym
Try different WinUAE configs..

Try the attached
Thanks mate but it's a real Amiga. Didn't say that in my post at first you most have read it before i edited it.
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Old 31 May 2003, 22:36   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Parsec
Thanks mate but it's a real Amiga. Didn't say that in my post at first you most have read it before i edited it.
I have a similar unexpanded A1200 setup. Unfortunately most WHDLoad games require Fast RAM so you're only going to be able to play a handful of WHDLoad games. Try Hunter and Castle Master. They both work fine on an unexpanded A1200. If a WHDLoad game crashes while loading, it usually means it can't find enough RAM.
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Old 31 May 2003, 22:48   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Steve
I have a similar unexpanded A1200 setup. Unfortunately most WHDLoad games require Fast RAM so you're only going to be able to play a handful of WHDLoad games. Try Hunter and Castle Master. They both work fine on an unexpanded A1200. If a WHDLoad game crashes while loading, it usually means it can't find enough RAM.
Cheers Steve. I think you've saved me a lot of hassle with this one (I was about to trawl through all my disks installing them to see what works).

Interesting to see you're in St.Helens, I live in Wigan!

What is your thoughts on RAM expansion? I don't think I really need an accelerator, but looking on PowerC they want 39.95UKP for the A1208 which takes one 4/8 Mb SIMM. Battery backed-up clock sounds good though...
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Old 31 May 2003, 22:51   #7
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Keep an eye on ebay, I got a 1204 for 16 on there
 
Old 01 June 2003, 00:33   #8
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I'd recommend getting an 030 accelerator board. If you do, make sure that you don't get an overclocked CPU - I've had two and they just burn out. Go for a 50MHz chip (it's difficult to clock lower-rated CPUs this high, so they're generally genuine 50MHz chips) or a 28MHz chip (the slowest 030 you can find). 40MHz boards tend to be overclocked.

If you're willing to pay around 70, you can often find Blizzard 1230-IV boards on eBay - these are the best 030 accelerators ever made for the Amiga. The mark III boards are quite good too, but I think that the mark II boards conflict with the PCMCIA socket.

Don't get an 040 or 060 accelerator - due to bugs in the Amiga Technologies motherboard (revision 2b), they crash every few minutes (if you can get the computer to boot at all). You can get the bugs repaired (30 from Eyetech) or you can attempt to do it yourself (instructions are on the Aminet) but I wouldn't recommend it unless you're a hardware guru.
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Old 01 June 2003, 00:46   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by ant512
Don't get an 040 or 060 accelerator - due to bugs in the Amiga Technologies motherboard (revision 2b), they crash every few minutes (if you can get the computer to boot at all). You can get the bugs repaired (30 from Eyetech) or you can attempt to do it yourself (instructions are on the Aminet) but I wouldn't recommend it unless you're a hardware guru.
Jeez you know your stuff! I knew there was "something" about certain A1200 boards and timing issues but couldn't remember exactly what! Will steer clear of 040 and 060 accelerators as I don't need that much power anyway.

Always wondered - do accelerator boards need drivers to get them going or does the machine recognise that there is a CPU/FPU upgrade present?
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Old 01 June 2003, 01:13   #10
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Cool

Quote:
Originally posted by Parsec
Cheers Steve.
Glad to help.
Quote:
Originally posted by Parsec
Interesting to see you're in St.Helens, I live in Wigan!
Ah, the land of the pies.
Quote:
Originally posted by Parsec
What is your thoughts on RAM expansion? I don't think I really need an accelerator, but looking on PowerC they want 39.95UKP for the A1208 which takes one 4/8 Mb SIMM. Battery backed-up clock sounds good though...
I'd definitely go for an accelerator board with Fast RAM rather than just Fast RAM. I used to have the Blizzard 030 with 16MB and can tell you that it is a superb board. I never had any problems with it. I'd like to try something faster though so I'm currently saving up for a Blizzard 1260. Nice and fast.
Quote:
Originally posted by Parsec
Always wondered - do accelerator boards need drivers to get them going or does the machine recognise that there is a CPU/FPU upgrade present?
The Amiga automatically takes advantage. No drivers are needed in the same way PC hardware requires drivers. That is true plug and play!

Does the 060 have problems with the Commodore A1200's or the Escom (Amiga Technologies) A1200's? I have a C= Amiga but I'm not sure what the revision number is. This is the first time I've heard about these 060 problems.
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Old 01 June 2003, 02:22   #11
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THis bloody A1200 is going to cost me a fortune! Firs buying it, then the hard drive + cable and ....

After an evenings use it looks like the floppy drive is dead. It will read a bootblock, but will not read/write much more. It's got a Panasonic drive (257 I think) and a little adapter board (like the CatWeasel I guess). Will a standard PC HD drive fit?

Or will a standard A500 drive fit? I have one of these in my drawer, always good to have a spare when the A500 is in use..
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Old 01 June 2003, 18:01   #12
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Thumbs up

Congrats on 10000 threads EAB.
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Old 02 June 2003, 00:23   #13
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Things are looking on the bright side Went to PC World today (only place open on a Sunday) to get a new floppy drive. The Panasonic 257 on their website was not in stock, they only had "Alps".

Decided not to bother, so bought a head cleaning kit instead. Then got in the car, and decided **** it, it's only a tenner for a drive and I might be able to get it working so got one too. The best thing is, the head cleaner sorted my problems

I now have two WHDLoad installs that work (on my base A1200), Super Hang-On and Defender of the Crown. Trouble with both is that when the game is running and HD is being accessed the screen goes black and the sound breaks up.

This is not really an issue with SHO, but with something like DOTC it ruins the presentation. Is this just from not having enough RAM or are all WHDLoad installs like that? Not quite the gaming nirvana I was hoping for....
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Old 02 June 2003, 00:44   #14
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030 accelerators do not need drivers. 040 and 060 accelerators do.

040 boards require a "68040.library" file - this is usually shipped with the board, and it may even be on the original WB3.x disks. If the board was made by a decent company, it'll use the official Commodore library.

060 boards were never envisioned by Commodore - the 060 was developed after both the 4000 and 1200 were released. To get around this problem, hardware manufacturers use a dummy 040 library that simply redirects any calls to 040 functions to the original library, and any 060 calls to another library - "68060.library". These are all board-specific, and libraries for one board don't usually work with other accelerators.

If you get an 060 board, you'll also probably need CyberPatcher (Blizzard-only, supplied with the board) or OxyPatcher (commercial). These programs emulate FPU functions not supported in the 060. The 060 does have hardware emulation of those functions, but it is staggeringly slow - programs can hang for hours at a time if they use many unsupported FPU functions.

OxyPatcher and CyberPatcher are simply installed in WBStartup, and sort out the problem.

You'll notice problems with 040/060 boards on all Amiga Technologies 1200s. They all have revision 2B of the motherboard, which I've found to be the worst version. The last version of the Commodore 1200 (revision 1d.4) also has problems, but the fix is slightly different. I've found the problem to be less severe on this version (a crash every two minutes, instead of every few seconds), but reports vary.

Versions without any known problems are 1A and 1B. Apparently the 1B motherboard is the most common British version.

You can check the revision of your motherboard by opening the case, lifting up the keyboard, and looking underneath the metal shielding next to the accelerator expansion slot. It'll say something along the lines of "Channel Z A1200 Revision xx". (The "Channel Z" is a reference to the B-52's song.)

As for floppy drives, Amiga Technologies couldn't get any of the original Amiga floppies, so they bought a job lot of PC high-density drives and modified them to work with the Amiga. This has pros and cons - you can get a patch from the Aminet that enables the drive's high-density mode (for Amiga disks only, not MS-DOS formatted disks), which is a bonus, but the drives are missing a vital disk signal ("DISKWAIT") that means they don't work with the majority of non-DOS disks. Primarily, that means an awful lot of Amiga games won't work from floppy.

I once tried fitting an A600 drive to an Amiga Tech motherboard, and it refused to work - it span constantly. That may have simply been my own incompetence, or Amiga Tech may have modded the motherboard itself to work with PC drives.

Last edited by ant512; 02 June 2003 at 00:51.
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Old 02 June 2003, 00:58   #15
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Oh, and if anyone's looking for an 060, Vesalia (http://www.vesalia.de/) are currently selling off their stock of Blizzard 1260 50MHz boards, with 64MB of RAM, for around 170. Note that this is the tower version of the board, and will probably only fit towered 1200s.

I ordered one a while ago, and am expecting to get it delivered either this week or next (finally I can replace my Apollo 1260!) - if anyone wants info about Vesalia's service and the quality of the board (and whether or not it fits in a desktop case) I'll post more info here when it arrives.
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Old 02 June 2003, 01:09   #16
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I have an A1200 with 030 board. Some WHD games still messes up and wont start. One games works fine in WinUAE and the exact game have problems on my real system.
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Old 02 June 2003, 01:37   #17
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Also a bit cheaper - Viper 060
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Old 02 June 2003, 08:17   #18
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Damn,.. thats cheap for a 060 :eek
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Old 02 June 2003, 09:49   #19
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The question is, though: Is the Viper a good board? The obvious problems are:

- No rekicker (Blizzard has BlizKick, Apollo has RemApollo);
- Does it support MuLib (Enforcer replacements, virtual memory, etc);
- RAM limitations (64MB, the same as the Apollo, but that board could have a second SIMM socket fitted. The Blizzard accepts 128MB SIMMs, with a second socket on the SCSI expansion);
- No SCSI support.
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Old 02 June 2003, 10:08   #20
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Think I'll try and get an 030 off eBay.

Any ideas on WHDLoad blanking the screen and stopping audio playback when the game loads data ? Will this improve with more RAM?

I know there is a preload option, but it doesn't seem to be on all games...
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