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Author Topic: floppy disk emulator help/input  (Read 1171 times)
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sphinx
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« on: May 22, 2022, 07:59:16 07:59 »

i have old computers i would like to use but floopy disks both on 5.25 and 3.5 are not that common anymore
so i am looking for emulator with floopy connection
i have old swedish computers made by LUXOR ABC80 and ABC806 series both use 5.25 in different formats from 160kb this can be lower to 640kb
i would like to find a floopy emulator to use with these old computers if someone has any info that can help since i have never used such devices.

for my c64's it is easier to find since these are more common but of course any input for emulators for these as well.

all help is greatly appreciated.

p.s. does anyone know of keyboard adapter for ABC806 series so it would be possible to use corded PC keyboards since these are more common than
the ABC series keyboards.
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« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2022, 09:33:26 09:33 »

about 20 years ago there was a lot of info on adding usb to old computers, maybe thats the way to go.
add usb then use usb to floppy emulation.
China has a lot of 2,5" floppy to usb drives, at less than $10-15
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Sideshow Bob
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« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2022, 11:20:22 11:20 »

These are quite old devices long before the USB days. Do you know of they even support dual side floppies. 5.25 disks was single sided 160K before becoming dual sided 320K. Later we got the high-density variant with a capacity of 1.2 MB. I do not know if your machine support dual sided disks. From using Google I came by this https://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_drive_emulator/#sdhxc From what I read they can be configured to single sided. And you also can configure
►Number of tracks
►Sectors per track
►Sectors size
Also what I would have done is to search up something like a CPM (CPM is an old operating system) forum on the internet. They may be able to help you out better regarding emulators

Posted on: May 22, 2022, 11:13:43 11:13 - Automerged

about 20 years ago there was a lot of info on adding usb to old computers, maybe thats the way to go.
add usb then use usb to floppy emulation.
China has a lot of 2,5" floppy to usb drives, at less than $10-15
Yeah I used USB mass storage driver for DOS. When I worked with windows CE (x86). Very handy for transferring the CE image to the system HD. 
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sphinx
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« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2022, 11:35:47 11:35 »

yes both abc80 and abc806 support dual sided floppies the ones i got 2 are single side and 2 are double sided and both support both of them

i was lucky to get 200 5.25 double side and double density floppies 320kb i think they are those are new and unpakcked of good quality

but i would prefer to use a floppy emulator

i found HXC2001 too but i never used one

the ABC806 can use cpm2.0 and 3.0 but i am not 100% sure on the last one the abc80 i am not usre it can run cpm the computers are basicly the same but the 80 has less memory

i got 2 3.5" as usb drives but i guess those could perhaps be modified to run 5.25 i havw never looked into that.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2022, 11:37:48 11:37 by sphinx » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2022, 01:55:58 13:55 »

in past I need to install a software that require a 1.44mb floppy disk so came across with this software that can make or convert a standard USB stick to act like a floppy disk

sadman
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sphinx
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« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2022, 03:27:45 15:27 »

i have no problems with 5.25 or 3.5 on pc have lots of drives for these to read with
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CocaCola
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« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2022, 07:29:21 07:29 »

I would guess if you can find the info on the floppy interface protocol, it should not be much work to use a micro to spoof a floppy drive and use EEPROMS in a ZIF socket as a pseudo cartridge system, at least that would be my initial approach to get your most basic hardware-based emulator with a 'retro' feel...

The trouble is if you can find the floppy interface protocol documented well enough so you are not forced to reverse engineer it.

I can't be of much help beyond that, I do get a big kick out of seeing people do stuff like this, but the amount of time and dedication to accomplish this (especially if you need to reverse engineer the protocol) is not something that appeals to me doing myself 🤣

All that said, I think Sideshow Bob provided what might be your best lead with the hxc2001.com project as they have a generic floppy drive system emulation system already working, so all that is needed is the specific interface end to your system, an they might even be half way there with one of their already supported systems...
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Manuel
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« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2022, 08:02:04 08:02 »

I used one from the following site some years ago'....

http://www.gotekemulator.com/

I was not fully satisfied since I had many issue in letting the emulator work on the PC for preparing images....

And also followed a universal emulator (check how wide is the formats support list) :

https://hxc2001.com/

Take care,
X!
« Last Edit: May 23, 2022, 08:06:01 08:06 by Manuel » Logged

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Sideshow Bob
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« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2022, 10:45:32 10:45 »

Did some research Sunday. What you need is to emulate the interface between the FD controller and the host machine. The standard interface that all PC floppy disk drives use is called the Shugart Associates SA400 interface. It was invented in the 1970s and is based on the NEC 765 controller chip. All modern floppy controllers contain circuits that are compatible
with the original NEC 765 chip.
If you want to create an emulator. Just Google things like.
Shugart Associates SA400
Intel 8272A
Not saying it will be easy though In the end I would have gone with turnkey solution. I also post a link to a book. See the pages from page 569 and onward
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sphinx
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« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2022, 12:33:33 12:33 »

i have the interface-card/controller for floppy drive, 3 of them so i only need to emulate the floppy drive itsself
the formats seem to be according to manuals

 80kb  40 tracks   8sectors/track    256bytes/sector
160kb  40 tracks   16sectors/track   256bytes/sector
640kb  80 tracks   16sectors/track   256bytes/sector

looks more and more to hxc2001 floppy emulators

i got floopy controller chip somewhere in my parts boxes as well , i think name starts with wdxxxx
« Last Edit: May 23, 2022, 12:39:20 12:39 by sphinx » Logged

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kreutz
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« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2022, 05:27:09 17:27 »

You should take a look at: https://github.com/keirf/flashfloppy
HxC also has a firmware hack: https://hxc2001.com/store/    for the Gotek USB floppy emulators, Both work with HxC formatting
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