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Re: Help for Paul

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  • etxmato
    Hi Again, ... 1. Given that the hardware has 2 serial ports how can I connect the second port to a second modern computer and transfer the files?? I need rs232
    Message 1 of 13 , Aug 29 4:09 AM
      Hi Again,

      Thanks Bob, Steve and Lee for suggestions and offers so far. I just received another email from Paul, basically he doesn't see a good way forward unless he can get the files from the 8" disks. Also he wants to do this himself as he is afraid to post the disks and possibly loose the data. Now he needs some advise, and has the following questions:

      ------ email copy from Paul -------
      1. Given that the hardware has 2 serial ports how can I connect the second port to a second modern computer and transfer the files?? I need rs232 wiring and CPM command sequences to do this. From both computers

      1A. For example can I use copy con to copy the file from the host computer that is action as a terminal and running CPM under windows 98?/ If so how??

      2. Looking at the prom software for the controller and the instruction base it sure is not clear how I could reformat the current disks as it looks like the format is hard coded into the firmware. Again specific command sequences

      3. I also have a second generation controller that also supports 5" drives. But is the format it uses usable on modern 5" drives say from WIN 98 2000 computers that still support 5" drives?? Its not clear that the 5" format of 1980 is readable by 2000 computers. Need confirmation if it will work??

      I do have hardware for all of the above but no point unless there is a chance of success that being getting a ws or TXT file into the above win 98 computer where I have software that supposedly can read WordStar (ws) files.
      ----- end email from Paul -----

      If you have any answers to the above please let me know!

      Cheers, Marcel.
    • Robert DiPippo, k1wyc
      Marcel, Paul use the Windows or DOS computer as the terminal and capture the data then save it in a file. I have done this many times using my laptop computer
      Message 2 of 13 , Aug 29 7:59 AM
        Marcel, Paul use the Windows or DOS computer as the terminal and capture the data then save it in a file. I have done this many times using my laptop computer from my Elf2 computer. Procomm works well in either Windows or DOS. List the data while in the capture mode of Procomm.

        As for drive support use an older version of DRDOS as it supports 5" and 8" drives and should work.

        I have many versions of Workstar if necessary for DOS and it will work under Windows also.

        RS232 wiring for a DB9 is

        1 - 1
        2 - 3
        3 - 2
        Join 4 & 6 at both ends no wire needed
        5 - 5
        Join 7 & 8 at both ends no wire needed

        This is the same as a null modem cable.

        Bob
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: etxmato
        To: cosmacelf@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Saturday, August 29, 2009 7:09 AM
        Subject: [cosmacelf] Re: Help for Paul


        Hi Again,

        Thanks Bob, Steve and Lee for suggestions and offers so far. I just received another email from Paul, basically he doesn't see a good way forward unless he can get the files from the 8" disks. Also he wants to do this himself as he is afraid to post the disks and possibly loose the data. Now he needs some advise, and has the following questions:

        ------ email copy from Paul -------
        1. Given that the hardware has 2 serial ports how can I connect the second port to a second modern computer and transfer the files?? I need rs232 wiring and CPM command sequences to do this. From both computers

        1A. For example can I use copy con to copy the file from the host computer that is action as a terminal and running CPM under windows 98?/ If so how??

        2. Looking at the prom software for the controller and the instruction base it sure is not clear how I could reformat the current disks as it looks like the format is hard coded into the firmware. Again specific command sequences

        3. I also have a second generation controller that also supports 5" drives. But is the format it uses usable on modern 5" drives say from WIN 98 2000 computers that still support 5" drives?? Its not clear that the 5" format of 1980 is readable by 2000 computers. Need confirmation if it will work??

        I do have hardware for all of the above but no point unless there is a chance of success that being getting a ws or TXT file into the above win 98 computer where I have software that supposedly can read WordStar (ws) files.
        ----- end email from Paul -----

        If you have any answers to the above please let me know!

        Cheers, Marcel.





        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • randy129
        ... You need to know: a) If the ports have DB25 or DE9 connectors. b) If they are male or female. c) If the ports are wired as DTE or DCE. a & b are easy, you
        Message 3 of 13 , Aug 29 9:53 PM
          > 1. Given that the hardware has 2 serial ports how can
          > I connect the second port to a second modern computer
          > and transfer the files??

          You need to know:
          a) If the ports have DB25 or DE9 connectors.
          b) If they are male or female.
          c) If the ports are wired as DTE or DCE.

          a & b are easy, you just look. c is a bit harder, I
          would just use a rs232 tester ($5.00), and if you are
          connecting DTE to DTE (or DCE to DCE), it will show
          on the LEDs of the tester, in which case you know
          you need a null-modem adapter.

          A long time ago, I would have tried to make the right
          cable, but now I would just buy a cable and the needed
          adapters (25 to 9 pin, and maybe gender changers if cable
          did not have the right ends). ((Actually, I would rummage
          around in a few drawers till I found the right cables/adapters,
          coz I got tired of not having the right cables a long time ago,
          and bought a bunch of cables/adapters/testers/etc.)) :-)

          This place has inexpensive cables/adapters/testers:
          http://www.computergate.com


          > I need rs232 wiring and CPM command sequences to do this.

          The CP/M commands depend on just how you want to transfer,
          and what programs you have available on CP/M. All cp/m's
          have "pip" (peripheral interchange program). The command:
          PIP LST:=FILENAME.EXT
          will send filename.ext out the LST: device. You need to
          figure out what the cp/m device name is for that 2nd serial port.

          If you have a comm program on cp/m, you could do a file transfer.
          I have "modem7" on my old cp/m box, it does "xmodem" protocol.
          If memory serves me, I caught the file on my PC with a terminal
          program (either win 98 terminal, or maybe hyperterminal?????)
          I could be just remembering wrong, but it seems to me I told
          the terminal to use zmodem, and it received xmodem just fine.
          It was about six years ago last time I tried this.

          > 1A. For example can I use copy con to copy the file from the
          > host computer that is action as a terminal and running CPM
          > under windows 98?/ If so how??

          I would just copy them to PC files, not bother with cp/m (at
          least not while transfering).

          Randy
        • Lee Hart
          I have an SDS S-100 computer similar to what Paul has, with 8 drives, CP/M, and Wordstar. I think I could convert his disks, but he has 40 disks and it s a
          Message 4 of 13 , Aug 30 10:29 AM
            I have an SDS S-100 computer similar to what Paul has, with 8" drives,
            CP/M, and Wordstar. I think I could convert his disks, but he has 40
            disks and it's a pretty tedious process. Plus, he is understandably
            reluctant to send out his master disks.

            It might be better to get Paul's computer working, so he can transfer
            the data himself. The problem is straightforward; but it involves many
            simple little steps. The trouble is, if he misses a step, or doesn't
            know how to do it, it fails. When it fails, it's not likely that he'll
            know what went wrong. Someone without a lot of experience is not likely
            to be able to figure out the problem.

            To start with, we need to know exactly what hardware he has. SDS made
            lots of different systems, with different capabilities and limitations.
            If possible, Paul can copy my setup as a working example.

            Randy129 has a good list of *some* of the problems involved. He wrote:
            >> 1. Given that the hardware has 2 serial ports, how can
            >> I connect the second port to a second modern computer
            >> and transfer the files?
            >
            > You need to know:
            > a) If the ports have DB25 or DE9 connectors.
            > b) If they are male or female.
            > c) If the ports are wired as DTE or DCE.

            Based on my SDS computer, they are DB25 female. Whether they are DTE or
            DCE, the baud rate, and all the data format features (# data bits,
            parity, stop bits, etc.) are determined by a tangle of jumpers. He'll
            need documentation for his SDS serial card to sort out how it's
            configured now, and/or how to change it to an acceptable format.

            Mine has an SBC200 CPU board which has a serial port on it. I use it
            with a Heath H19 serial terminal at 4800 baud, 8 data, no parity, 1
            stop. My Wordstar is configured for this terminal as well.

            SDS also made SBC100, SBC200, and SBC300 CPU boards, plus I/O4 and I/O8
            boards, all with serial ports. I have at least some documentation on
            these if needed.

            Step 1: Get the old SDS computer itself to work.

            First, there are all the issues of whether the computer still works.
            There could be missing cables, capacitors that have gone bad from
            sitting and will fail as soon as it is turned on, connections that have
            gone open or become intermittent from corrosion, disk drives that have
            mechanical problems from sitting (need to be cleaned and lubricated etc).

            Once it works, he'll need a working console. SDS computers either had a
            memory mapped video board and parallel keyboard; or used an RS-232
            serial terminal. I think Paul said his had a serial terminal; but the
            terminal is gone and I don't know what kind it was.

            His best bet is probably to use a PC as his console. Again, I have no
            idea what kind of PC he has, whether it has an RS-232 serial port, or
            what version of Windows or other software it has.

            In the past, I used a PC to emulate a serial terminal with the DOS
            MODEM7 program, and with the TERM program that came with Windows 3.1.
            Both of these worked adequately for basic jobs, but worked poorly with
            Wordstar (they imitated a very "dumb" terminal).

            The terminal program buried in Windows 98 worked *worse*. It was so slow
            that it missed characters, and was effectively useless for anything but
            simple command line CP/M commands (DIR A:, PIP this=that, etc.)

            There are better terminal programs for PCs, but he'd have to buy one, or
            figure out the oddities and quirks of one of the free ones by trial and
            error.

            The SDS computers have a built-in machine level monitor. Even if the
            disks aren't working and CP/M isn't loaded, you can talk to the SDS
            computer from the console. It can examine and change memory, run a
            program at a memory address, try to boot from disk, etc. On my SDS
            computer, typing a capital C <return> tries to boot the CP/M operating
            system from the boot tracks on the A: drive.

            The disk needs a working copy of CP/M that is configured for the *exact*
            harware that is actually installed and configured. CP/M isn't like DOS;
            you can't stick any disk in any computer!

            Once he has a working SDS computer, and a working console using a PC,
            and a working CP/M operating system, it should be very easy to transfer
            the files. The most straightforward way is to have the PC's terminal
            emulator save the data it receives to disk, and type the CP/M PIP
            command to send each file to the console with something like TYPE
            filename.doc. If it's a program file with 8-bit data or embedded control
            codes in it, then use PIP CON:=filename.com.

            --
            Ring the bells that still can ring
            Forget the perfect offering
            There is a crack in everything
            That's how the light gets in -- Leonard Cohen
            --
            Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart_at_earthlink.net
          • etxmato
            Hi Again, Thanks again for all the replies; sorry this is difficult for me to summarize as I don t know the CPM or SDS systems..... ... Where? the CPM in the
            Message 5 of 13 , Aug 30 1:52 PM
              Hi Again,

              Thanks again for all the replies; sorry this is difficult for me to summarize as I don't know the CPM or SDS systems.....

              Anyway this is what Paul answered/asks:

              > Once he has a working SDS computer, and a working console using a PC,
              > and a working CP/M operating system,
              Where? the CPM in the SDS is working and the only way to command the 8" disks

              > it should be very easy to transfer
              > the files. The most straightforward way is to have the PC's terminal
              > emulator save the data it receives to disk,
              How do you do that?

              > and type the CP/M PIP
              > command to send each file to the console with something like TYPE
              > filename.doc.
              I do not want to send the file to the emulator display. I do want to read the dir command and transfer the files to the host computer's hard drive. Is that possible??

              If we are using Procom what do I type into the emulator to send the data from drive D on the SDS computer to Drive G on the host emulator computer. This ONE statement is 99% of the issue The file type does not matter nor the file content. What matters is the file is not on a modern PC where it can be operated on. WordStar is a distraction in the effort just a different file that needs to be saved and cannot be a copy of what the terminal emulator might display.

              Help!??
              Cheers, Marcel.
            • Lee Hart
              From: etxmato ... The trouble with summarizing is that it leaves out things that the writer assumes that the reader already
              Message 6 of 13 , Aug 30 2:34 PM
                From: etxmato <marcel.v.tongeren@...>
                >Thanks again for all the replies; sorry this is difficult for me to summarize as I
                >don't know the CP/M or SDS systems...

                The trouble with summarizing is that it leaves out things that the writer assumes that the reader already knows. That's what makes this problem so difficult -- it's like trying to tell someone how to replace a light bulb, but not realizing that the reader doesn't know that they unscrew!

                > Anyway this is what Paul answered/asks:
                >> Once he has a working SDS computer, and a working
                >> console using a PC, and a working CP/M operating system...
                > Where? The CPM in the SDS is working and the only way to command the 8" disks

                What I meant is that he needs to get to this point:
                - put the SDS computer on a desk
                - the 8" drives sitting on the desk next to it, and connected to the computer

                connected (via the 50pin flat cable),

                - AC line cord plugged into AC power, and the back of the SDS computer


                >> it should be very easy to transfer
                >> the files. The most straightforward way is to have the PC's terminal
                >> emulator save the data it receives to disk,
                >How do you do that?
                >
                >> and type the CP/M PIP
                >> command to send each file to the console with something like TYPE
                >> filename.doc.
                >I do not want to send the file to the emulator display. I do want to read the dir command and transfer the files to the host computer's hard drive. Is that possible??
                >
                >If we are using Procom what do I type into the emulator to send the data from drive D on the SDS computer to Drive G on the host emulator computer. This ONE statement is 99% of the issue The file type does not matter nor the file content. What matters is the file is not on a modern PC where it can be operated on. WordStar is a distraction in the effort just a different file that needs to be saved and cannot be a copy of what the terminal emulator might display.
                >
                >Help!??
                >Cheers, Marcel.
                >
                >
                >
                >------------------------------------
                >
                >========================================================
                >Visit the COSMAC ELF website at http://www.cosmacelf.comYahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >


                --
                Those who say it cannot be done should not interrupt the one who is
                doing it. -- Chinese proverb
                --
                Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart-at-earthlink.net
              • Lee Hart
                From: etxmato ... Sorry; something screwy happened. I ll try again. A working SDS computer, and a working console using a PC,
                Message 7 of 13 , Aug 30 2:40 PM
                  From: etxmato <marcel.v.tongeren@...>
                  >> Once he has a working SDS computer, and a working console using a PC,
                  >> and a working CP/M operating system,
                  > Where? the CPM in the SDS is working and the only way to command the 8" disks

                  Sorry; something screwy happened. I'll try again. A "working SDS computer, and a working console using a PC, and a working CP/M operating system means:

                  - SDS computer on the desk, plugged into AC power, and turned on.
                  - 8" disk drives on the desk, also plugged into AC power, and turned on.
                  - 8" drive cabinet connected to the SDS computer by the 50-pin ribbon cable connector.
                  - "console" serial port RS-232 connector on the SDS computer connected by a cable to

                  sing a PC as the >
                  >> it should be very easy to transfer
                  >> the files. The most straightforward way is to have the PC's terminal
                  >> emulator save the data it receives to disk,
                  >How do you do that?
                  >
                  >> and type the CP/M PIP
                  >> command to send each file to the console with something like TYPE
                  >> filename.doc.
                  >I do not want to send the file to the emulator display. I do want to read the dir command and transfer the files to the host computer's hard drive. Is that possible??
                  >
                  >If we are using Procom what do I type into the emulator to send the data from drive D on the SDS computer to Drive G on the host emulator computer. This ONE statement is 99% of the issue The file type does not matter nor the file content. What matters is the file is not on a modern PC where it can be operated on. WordStar is a distraction in the effort just a different file that needs to be saved and cannot be a copy of what the terminal emulator might display.
                  >
                  >Help!??
                  >Cheers, Marcel.
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >------------------------------------
                  >
                  >========================================================
                  >Visit the COSMAC ELF website at http://www.cosmacelf.comYahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >


                  --
                  Those who say it cannot be done should not interrupt the one who is
                  doing it. -- Chinese proverb
                  --
                  Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart-at-earthlink.net
                • Lee Hart
                  From: etxmato Aarrgh! That s twice that Earthlink s webmail has sent the message before I m done and without me hitting send !
                  Message 8 of 13 , Aug 30 2:45 PM
                    From: etxmato <marcel.v.tongeren@...>

                    Aarrgh! That's twice that Earthlink's webmail has sent the message before I'm done and without me hitting "send"! I'll try again later on another computer.

                    --
                    Those who say it cannot be done should not interrupt the one who is
                    doing it. -- Chinese proverb
                    --
                    Lee A. Hart, 814 8th Ave N, Sartell MN 56377, leeahart-at-earthlink.net
                  • Mark Graybill
                    ... The PIP command Lee gave will send the original file to your LST: device, usually set to point to the printer port. If this is the case, connecting that
                    Message 9 of 13 , Aug 31 1:27 AM
                      On Sun, Aug 30, 2009 at 1:52 PM, etxmato<marcel.v.tongeren@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      > Hi Again,
                      >
                      > Thanks again for all the replies; sorry this is difficult for me to
                      > summarize as I don't know the CPM or SDS systems.....
                      >
                      > Anyway this is what Paul answered/asks:
                      >
                      >> Once he has a working SDS computer, and a working console using a PC,
                      >> and a working CP/M operating system,
                      > Where? the CPM in the SDS is working and the only way to command the 8"
                      > disks
                      >
                      >> it should be very easy to transfer
                      >> the files. The most straightforward way is to have the PC's terminal
                      >> emulator save the data it receives to disk,
                      > How do you do that?
                      >
                      >> and type the CP/M PIP
                      >> command to send each file to the console with something like TYPE
                      >> filename.doc.
                      > I do not want to send the file to the emulator display. I do want to read
                      > the dir command and transfer the files to the host computer's hard drive. Is
                      > that possible??

                      The PIP command Lee gave will send the original file to your LST:
                      device, usually set to point to the printer port. If this is the case,
                      connecting that port to the PC and having a program on the PC ready to
                      receive the data will transfer the file as-is to the PC:

                      PIP LST:=filename.ext

                      others that may work if LST: does not:

                      PIP LPT:=filename.ext
                      PIP TTY:=filename.ext
                      PIP PUN:=filename.ext

                      Then the Wordstar file can be converted through a utility on the PC.
                      These range from simple high-bit strippers to full converters to HTML
                      and other formats. Check out wordstar.org.

                      >
                      > If we are using Procom what do I type into the emulator to send the data
                      > from drive D on the SDS computer to Drive G on the host emulator computer.
                      > This ONE statement is 99% of the issue The file type does not matter nor the
                      > file content. What matters is the file is not on a modern PC where it can be
                      > operated on. WordStar is a distraction in the effort just a different file
                      > that needs to be saved and cannot be a copy of what the terminal emulator
                      > might display.

                      If the PC running Procomm is in the host mode (use Alt-Q to put it in
                      this mode), connect to it with the CP/M system. Then select UPLOAD off
                      the Procomm host menu, and choose XModem transfer (retains all the
                      Wordstar formatting info from the original file, unlike ASCII
                      transfers.) The PC will then wait to receive the file.

                      Then use your CP/M program's command to do an XModem upload. If you
                      need assistance, let me know the CP/M program being used (MDM7.COM or
                      whatever) and I can give specifics for it if I know them. It should
                      request the filename and upload protocol. Then the CP/M system should
                      contact the PC, and give messages on the transfer status until it is
                      complete.

                      F1 does setup on Procomm, if that is required beforehand.
                      >
                      > Help!??
                      > Cheers, Marcel.
                      >

                      Good luck!

                      -Mark
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