Goldmark systems have long been renowned lor their tape to disk backup service. Speedtrans handles a fair proportion of the "DJL Speedlock" system of protection Can its successor do any better?
Tape-to-disk transfer routines have long been a bone of contention on the CPC's. Users cry out for them, mostly for the legitimate purpose of backing up tape software. For this reason we continue to cover these devices, both hardware and software. However, we'd be interested to hear from all readers as to whether you thmk we ought to contmue this policy, when there is the potential for them to be misused for illegal purposes.
Yes! Oh, you want more.. Well, using the thing is simplicity itself. Just run the program, insert a blank disk into the drive. When you have a tape to be transferred in the cassette recorder, press any key on the keyboard. From now on, Speedtrans Plus works automatically. It loads the Speedlock'ed loading picture and program, then saves them to disk. It tells you what filename the game is being saved under, and saves an autorun file as well. Run it, and your game comes off the disk at the speed of a - well, something pretty quick. All the files are compacted down to their minimum size. Speedtrans Plus will only work on 6128s or expanded 464/664 machines. Goldmark confidently predict it will handle about 83 different games.
To a more important aspect of this product - its potential use. Many people claim that these sort of programs have a clearly defined task - to make disk backup copies of someone's tape program. Which is what a proportion of people will use it for. But. stated simply, these programs bypass protection systems. After that, the programs are susceptible to misuse by pirates - software thieves. I don't believe that most commercial pirates use this method, but the possibility exists
Pirates have too easy a life as it is, and the present state of the industry is so apathetic that they will continue to get away with their theft. I would like to see more hardware protection Amstrad could easily incorporate an electronic serial number into every computer manufactured Games would have to be configured and registered with that serial number, like a lot of business software at present.
The whole point of this hypothetical exercise is that, if a game was found on the wrong machine, or a piece of software was written to get round the protection, whoever had the game or wrote the software could be identified, and then prosecuted. Now, under the above system, Multiface II - blackbox copiers - would replace programs such as Speedtrans Plus. They are cheaper in the long run. and can't easily be used to pirate games.
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L'Amstrad CPC est une machine 8 bits à base d'un Z80 à 4MHz. Le premier de la gamme fut le CPC 464 en 1984, équipé d'un lecteur de cassettes intégré il se plaçait en concurrent du Commodore C64 beaucoup plus compliqué à utiliser et plus cher. Ce fut un réel succès et sorti cette même années le CPC 664 équipé d'un lecteur de disquettes trois pouces intégré. Sa vie fut de courte durée puisqu'en 1985 il fut remplacé par le CPC 6128 qui était plus compact, plus soigné et surtout qui avait 128Ko de RAM au lieu de 64Ko.