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Old 30 August 2012, 17:25   #1
hansel75
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Bootdisk for mounting a card in PCMCIA

Hi! I was wondering if there ever was a floppy boot disk released, to allow workbench2 and whdload to be loaded from the pcmcia adpater+cf card?, and not via any kind of internal ide/cf setup.

I have seen the idea mentioned a few times but have failed to find any working ones for download, the few i thought would work like comfy and cf classic workbench failed to boot for me.

I have an A600 with kickstart 2.0(37.299), and if it is possible to boot from a floppy, which then redirects to the pcmcia cf card that is acting as a hard drive, or using a hdf file with an installed workbench, that would be amazing!

Thanks, Hansel.

Last edited by hansel75; 30 August 2012 at 17:39.
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Old 30 August 2012, 18:29   #2
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This is very easy to make yourself. Might not be worth your while to mount a virtual drive image on an A600, but just having the system on the CF card, why not.

You can get away with keeping the card in FAT format to some extent, but there are certain characters that are illegal in FAT but legal in Amiga filesystems..
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Old 30 August 2012, 18:57   #3
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Hi and thanks Jope, could you give some simple instructions on how to do this. I am an amiga noob, i don't know how to make boot floppies or how to create and edit a start sequence etc.. I also don't know what files i would need to add to the floppy adf.

Either that or would it be possible for you to make up a boot disk in adf format and upload it for download?

As i mentioned i have a 2mb A600 with kickstart 2.0 37.299, also with the pcmcia adapter and a 4gb cf card formatted in fat32.

Much appreciated, Han.
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Old 31 August 2012, 12:39   #4
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Hi, i seem to of gotten a boot disk to work that is designed to allow you to run comfy or cf_ClassicWB_LITE from cf/pcmcia.

But i can't seem to get any hdf files to run of the cf card that's in the pcmcia slot, i just get blanks screens after about 20secs of floppy activity.
I have copied over the necessary workbench file in winue for classic workbench etc, and it works in winuae ok but not on my real amiga.

The cf card is formatted to fat and i have added the hdf file onto it, the cf/pcmcia on it works fine when using the adf transfer software floppy to copy out adf's to real floppies.

I have an A600 has kickstart 2.0 (37.299), could this be the problem?
Should i be able to boot a hdf file of the cf/pcmcia when using a boot disk on this amiga?

Thanks, Han.

Last edited by hansel75; 31 August 2012 at 12:46.
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Old 31 August 2012, 17:02   #5
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First of all, are you sure what you want to run will run on your A600? You talk about classicwb, but I seem to remember that requires KS/WB 3.0 as the minimum?

A HDF cannot be run, it must be mounted. However mounting it requires a virtual disk driver. As I said before, on a base A600 that is not worth your while, you will lose precious RAM that could be put into better use. Also I'm not all that convinced that any virtual disk drivers will run on a base 68000 system. Haven't tried it myself, but you can search for them on aminet and read the manual to find out.

What you should do is: extract the contents of the HDF onto a memory card, then create a boot floppy that mounts that memory card and transfers control to it.

- format a blank floppy
- install that blank floppy (makes it bootable)
- copy at least the files devs/system-configuration, devs/compactflash.device, c/mount, c/assign, l/fat95, devs/dosdrivers/cf0, devs/dosdrivers/cf0.info to the same directories on that floppy
- create a s/startup-sequence on the floppy that mounts cf0: and assigns all the system assigns to cf0: with sys: being the last one.
- Then you can run "execute s:startup-sequence" as the last command in your floppy's startup-sequence and your system will start to run off the card in pcmcia.

You can use the assign command on a freshly booted floppy (boot with startup-sequence disabled) to find out what the system assigns are.

These instructions assume WB2.1. Your computer will not run anything newer since you have Kickstart 2.x.

There's a tool called snoopdos that can help you track down any missing libraries, that list of files is probably incorrect, since I'm just working off the top of my head here.

If you only have WB2.04 or 2.05, you need to do a little modification to the devs/dosdrivers/cf0 file, it needs to be copied to the floppy into a file called devs/mountlist and you need to add cf0: as the first line of text inside it and a # as the last line.

Here you can find some example mountlists: http://www.nyx.net/~rdavis/AmigaHints2.html search for the strings zipc: and zp0:. It is just a text file. Workbench ships with a rudimentary text editor called ed. <esc> x <return> saves and quits. <esc> q <return> quits without saving.

This should give you some idea about what things you need to learn how to do. Don't be afraid, AmigaOS is very simple and easy. There's a wealth of information + manuals on the web, just dig in and start learning what the commands do.

Step by step tutorials are boring, learning how to perform tasks is exciting. Debugging vague instructions makes you find out loads of new stuff. :-D

Last edited by Jope; 31 August 2012 at 17:10.
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Old 31 August 2012, 18:03   #6
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I can share my bootdisk with you.

It basically boots up, mounts the CF or Multicard on PCMCIA with a FAT filesystem, and then redirects all system assigns and stuff over there and boots from there. It's pretty handy I believe!

This only needs for you to have a Workbench install on your CF, SD or whatever card you have on the PCMCIA. No internal CF needed and the bootdisk I provide is legal (please don't ask for Workbench installs). if it doesn't work from that point on, it's up to you

And if you want to go the DIY way, just do what Jope said, it's basically the same.

Let me know!
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Old 31 August 2012, 18:15   #7
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Hi. Thanks Jope for all your help, but this is a bit beyond me. I understand some of it but i'm lost on a lot of what you suggested. Again thanks for your efforts.

Akira i would like to try your boot disk if it's ok to send to me, i have my workbench disks already here so i'm ok there.

So with your bootdisk, can this be used with the cf classic workbench 68k/gaae version, or the cf lite version in which i think both have kickstart 2 support(i might be wrong though), if not how to i go about installing workbench onto the cf card in combo with your boot disk.
Do you use a hdf file or do you just have the contents of the amiga drive directly on the cf card.

Thanks guys, Han.
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Old 31 August 2012, 18:31   #8
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Well you have to sort something out first, it seems to me you are stuck in the way between your Amiga and PC without having any way to transfer files over without one "egg or chicken" doing the work for you.

Without any means to transfer an ADF to your Amiga and then make it into a real Amiga diskette, I think you are pretty much stuck. Unless I missed something, I feel like you have on the one side Amiga WB disks and on the other side ClassicWB on your PC.

As to answer your question anyway, you would have the card formatted as FAT and copy the contents over. No need for HDF mounting. I know some people do it that way but my way is simpler I believe.
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Old 31 August 2012, 19:20   #9
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Hi and thanks, i can copy out adf's to a real floppy ok. I have the pcmcia adf transfer kit.

Han.
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Old 31 August 2012, 19:36   #10
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Alright then, look at The Zone, I have uploaded the bootdisk for you.
Let me know if it works. Remember, it will only work as long as you have inserted a CF card on the PCMCIA device, and as long as you have copied a Workbench over to it.

This is how you access The Zone: http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?t=26201
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Old 01 September 2012, 09:06   #11
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Thanks a lot for the boot disk Akira, it seems to work ok.

But i am having trouble getting with the workbench side of things. What is the best way to transfer/install a working WB2 onto my cf card?

Also would this classic workbench work ok-
ClassicWB 68k/GAAE
ECS, 2.0 ROMS, 68000, 2MB RAM, 80MB Hard Drive
TV/Monitor (Designed for PAL/NTSC/Non-Interlaced 640x256)
Normal Icon System - 4/8 Colour Screenmode
Target System A600/A500+ with memory expansion

Or should i start from scratch, my main issue atm is i don't know how to setup the WB files on the cf card.

Thanks, Han.
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Old 01 September 2012, 09:19   #12
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The best way .. Mount the hdf in winuae as a hard drive, mount the CF card in winuae as a directory-based hard drive, boot from a workbench disk image and copy clone the hdf's contents to the cf card.

Useful CLI commands:
- info (to find out what device/volume names your drives show up as)
- copy sourcedrive:#? destination: all clone (to copy the stuff over, naturally replace sourcedrive and destination with the names visible in your emulation)

That edition of classic wb seems to be a good match for your hardware.
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Old 01 September 2012, 09:56   #13
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Hi and thanks again. I'm not having any luck at all, i tried what you said but i don't think i am doing it properly. The only thing it ended up copying to my cf card using your method is the info files but nothing else.

If say my cf card is mounted as dh3 and the main hdf file is dh0, would this be the right cli command-

copy dh0:#? dh3:

Also should the cf card be added in winuae under "add directory or archive" or "add hard drive"?

And should the cf card be formatted in side of the amiga environment in winuae, or is a windows format format ok.

I tried it with that classic workbench hdf i mentioned, sorry i really am an amiga noob lol, it's been 20yrs since i last used one.

Han.

PS: I just had a pm from another member, he doesn't think this will work because of the fat format not liking amiga files, apparently a hdf file on the cf card is the best way to go!

Last edited by hansel75; 01 September 2012 at 10:25.
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Old 01 September 2012, 13:02   #14
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Well that is not true. Fat format will work OK. I been using it for ages. You are just not doing something right but you are on the right path.
Also classicWB does not include the WB Files so you gotta install it using real wb2.05 floppies too.

For me the best way is always to start from scratch but that is up to you.

Your command is slightly off, I'd do:
Copy DH0:?# all to DH3:

That makes sure all dirs ad subdirs are copied.

I'd install from scratch on WinUAE using default wb2.1 disks.
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Old 01 September 2012, 14:43   #15
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Hi, ok i have sorted out the copying process and managed to copy the workbench files onto my cf card within winuae using the cli command.
The 4gb cf card itself had been formatted into fat format through windows beforehand, and i know it works fine when transferring adf's to floppy.

I have done 2 tests, one with the classicWB68k(after installing the WB files to it ok), the other with a WB2 install i did from scratch.
Both WB's boot up in winuae fine using an A600 profile with hd.

I then put the boot floppy into the amiga with the cf/pcmcia card that has the WB files directly copied onto it, and both times it boots of the boot floppy for about 20secs, then does nothing and sits on a blank screen,

I think i'm about to give up on this after spending the last 3 nights trying to get something working, i don't know what i am doing wrong and it's really frustrating.

I appreciate all the help, Han.
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Old 01 September 2012, 14:55   #16
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Don't worry man, it's a bit daunting to get things up and running after such a long break. I'll have the disk ready tonight.

Haven't used my Amigas in months, kinda excited to be tinkering with it again
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Old 01 September 2012, 16:29   #17
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It is weird that it sits there without saying anything. If there was any sort of mistake, an AmigaDOS screen would come up and say so.

Try adding the following line at the beginning of the s/startup-sequence file on teh boot floppy:
echo " "
That should turn the AmigaDOS screen on and you can see if something else is going on.
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Old 01 September 2012, 19:43   #18
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Oooooh I always make this mistake when making this sort of script.
Find in The Zone a new floppy disk which definitely should work as I tested it in my A600 just now and booted a simple WB setup off an SD card formatted as FAT16 on the PCMCIA port.

Let me know how it goes!
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Old 02 September 2012, 03:05   #19
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Most likely wont work, pcmcia doesnt work either on 37.299, so you cant boot off hdd or use the pcmcia port.

When I was finding this out I was like, did commodore even test anything before it was release? both the new features of the 600 and neither of them worked at release.

Got a 37.299 600 here, so going to try a boot disk tomorrow to see if the internal hdd works at all, seeing as its a 4fb cf and I believe ,300 could boot upto 40mb drives I doubt it.
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Old 02 September 2012, 07:49   #20
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Hi sneeker, the pcmcia on an A600 with 37.299 does in fact work, you just need the compact flash files in the right directory of your wb disk.
Either that or the adf transfer kit software that came on floppy with my pcmcia adapter, will detect the pcmcia fine as well.

I know this works because i have copied out many adf's to real floppies on my A600 using adfblitzer/tsgui.

As for hd usage on this A600, i believe that 37.299 does not have any ide support, so an internal ide/cf hd setup would not work unless a kickstart 3.1 chip is installed.

Now what we are trying to achieve here is to use a boot floppy to allow the pcmcia/cf card to act as a hd, and someone correct me if i am wrong, but this workaround in theory, should still work ok, even with 37.299.

Han.

PS: Couldn't get anything going with your 2nd boot disk either akira, i have no idea what the problem is.

Last edited by hansel75; 02 September 2012 at 08:40.
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