HARDWARE ★ INICRON RAM-ROM-BOX ★

Inicron - SoftbrennerInterface ROM - Inicron ROM-RAM BoxInterface ROM - Inicron RAMROM - Box (Manual)
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Users's manual of the INICRON ROM-RAM-BOX (C)1995
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For further information please look at the '#DOC-E-2.TXT'-file !
Important: All following explanations depend on the basic version of
;the ROM-RAM-BOX with 128 kb (8 ROM-RAM slots) and on the
;SOFTBRENNER version 1.02 !
THE ROM-RAM-BOX
Basics............................................. x
Switches and controls of the box
(1) On/off EPROM-socket........................... x
(2) On/off Simulator-RAM-chip.................... x
(3) Selection ROM-number EPROM-socket............ x
(4) On/off ROM-RAM slot 0-7....................... x
(5) On/off writemode.............................. x
(6) Resetswitch................................... x
(7) LED writemode................................. x
(8) Akku-Jumper................................... x
(9) LED Power on ................................. x
(10) Choice of EPROM-segments...................... x
(11) EPROM-Socket.................................. x
(12) Simulator-RAM 128 kb.......................... x
Basic settings..................................... x
THE SOFTBRENNER V1.02
The menue
L LOAD & INSTALL................................... x
Z SHOW ROMs....................................... x
R SHOW RSX ..................................... x
G GET ROM ......................................... x
S SAVE ROM......................................... x
K CATALOGUE........................................ x
E ERASE ROM........................................ x
M MAKE ROM......................................... x
I INFO............................................. x
+ - USER......................................... x
A B C DRIVE........................................ x
TIPS AND HINTS
Special info about ROM-No. 0 & 7................... x
Installation of data into the ROM-RAM-BOX.......... x
Design of ROM-headers.............................. x
PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS
What's to do if.................................... x
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BASICS
The ROM-RAM-BOX is equiped with a 128 kb simulator-RAM. It holds 8
ROM-RAM-slots. Each ROM-RAM-slot is able to contain the data of a
'normal'16 kb EPROM.
Every ROM-RAM-slot has got a number. ROM-RAM-slot 0 has the number 0,
ROM-RAM-slot 1 has the number 1 etc. up to RAM-ROM-slot 7. These
numbers are equal to the 'ROM-select-number' which the CPC can access.
Beside these 8 RAM-ROM-slots in the simulator-RAM the ROM-RAM-BOX
carries an additional slot: Slot number 9, the EPROM-socket. It has no
fixed number like the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7: This number is editable
between 0-15. The EPROM-socket represents a link between EPROMs and
simulator-RAM.
To use EPROM-programs you have to bring it into the ROM-RAM-BOX.
In which way you get EPROM-software into the ROM-RAM-BOX ?
Three sources are possible:
1. You have got an EPROM (8,16,32 or 64 kb capacity) and you want to
install these ROM-programs into the ROM-RAM-BOX. You have to use
the EPROM-socket. Put the EPROM into the socket and get the program
with the 'GET-ROM' option of the SOFTBRENNER. The ROM-program is
now ready to be installed in the RAM-ROM-slots 0-7 or you may save
it on disc.
2. There is an EPROM in another ROM-BOX or in another hardware
(maybe into a RAM-expansion with EPROM-socket etc.). In this case
you are able to get the data with the 'GET-ROM' funktion, too. And
of course yoy may save or install it.
3. You've got ROM-software on disc. In this case you can use the
'LOAD & INSTALL' function to load it and install it in the ROM-
RAM-slots 0-7.
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; SWITCHES AND CONTROLS OF THE ROM-RAM-BOX
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(1) ON/OFF EPROM-SOCKET
With this switch you turn the EPROM-socket (11) ON or OFF.
If you want to run an EPROM-program in the socket or if you want to
'GET' a program, you have to switch it ON (towards viewer). Is the
socket turned off, the CPC can not access EPROMs in the socket.
(2) ON/OFF RAM-CHIP
With this switch you turn ALL ROM-RAM-slots 0-7 ON/OFF. If you
switch the chip OFF, the settings (4) won't be important any more !
To the viewer is ON, away is OFF.
If you turn the RAM-chip off, the CPC can't access any ROM-program in
the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7.
This point is important if any software does not run with ROM-software
(maybe the software 'fears'a hacking module or the ROM-soft occupies
too much working RAM etc.)
In this cases you easily turn the RAM-chip OFF, reset the computer and
load the software again.
This funktion may be useful in another case: If there is some data-
trash in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7 (no correct ROM-header for example) and
the computer get into trouble after switching on. If this situation
apears turn off the ROM-RAM-slots seperately with switch (2) or turn
them off completely with (4). Then reset the computer, load the
SOFTBRENNER from disc and erase or change the data-trash. See Point
(4).
(3) CHOOSE ROM-NUMBER EPROM-SOCKET
The user is allowed to choose the ROM-number of the EPROM-socket. The
number is binary encoded. You can choose a number between 0 and 15
with the four DIP-switches. Turning a switch up represents a set bit
(one) and a down switch stands for a reset bit (zero).
Examples:
The EPROM-socket should have number 0:
down down down down (binary 0 0 0 0)
The EPROM-socket should have number 1:
down down down up (binary 0 0 0 1)
Number 7:
down up up up (binary 0 1 1 1)
Or number 15:
up up up up (binary 1 1 1 1)
etc.
Important: If you want to change the number of the EPROM-socket you
;should NOT choose a number which is occupied by another
;ROM !
If your favorite number is occupied by a ROM in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7
you may switch the slots 0-7 off seperately (switch 4) or completely
(switch 2).
(4) ON/OFF ROM-RAM-SLOTS 0-7
These 8 DIP-switches turns on/off the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7. On the left
side you'll find the switch representing ROM-RAM-slot 7, on the right
side you see the switch representing slot 0. DIP-switch down is ON,
switch up is OFF.
If you want to turn off all ROM-programes in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7,
you have to push all 8 DIP-switches UP or you turn off the RAM chip
completely with switch (2). See point (2).
Important: You should NOT switch on a ROM-RAM-slot if it's number is
;occupied by another ROM !
If the place is occupied by the EPROM-socket, you can easily change
the number of the EPROM-socket with switch (3). Or maybe turn off
the EPROM-socket with switch (1).
(5) ON/OFF WRITEMODE
This switch is used to turn on/off the writemode of the ROM-RAM-BOX.
To the viewer is ON (green LED is lit), away from viewer is OFF (green
LED is off).
This switch ALLWAYS should be in position OFF !
Only if you want to install ROM-software in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7 you
may turn it into ON position. Please note the SOFTBRENNER advices !
See chapter 'SOFTBRENNER',too.
Very fatal to the installed ROM-programes would be if you turn on the
writemode and reset the computer: The ROMs would be corrupted and a
'checksum-error' message would be the result (if a checksum routine
would have been implemented).
If a 'checksum-error' appears you have to install the ROM-programs
again !
(6) RESETSWITCH
As an 'extra-bonus'you've got this useful switch which allows you to
reset the CPC very save and easily !
(7) LED WRITEMODE
It is lit, if the writemode is ON. See Point (5) !
(8) AKKU-JUMPER
If the jumper is set and the computer is on, the build-in accumulator
will be charged.
The RAM-chip (12) is powered by the accumulator when the CPC is off.
So all installed ROM-programs in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7 are 'save and
warm'.
Attention: If you turn off the CPC and put the jumper away, all
installed ROM-programs will be erased !
Only put the jumper away if you store the ROM-RAM-BOX for a long time
(some month) without computer on. This would be better for a long accu
lifetime.
(9) LED POWER ON
This LED is lit if the ROM-RAM-BOX is connected to the CPC and the
computer is on.
(10) CHOICE OF EPROM-SEGENTS
If you want to 'GET ROMs'which are bigger then 16 kb, you can use
these two DIP-switches to get the data in 16 kb steps.
One Segment = 16 kb = Room for one ROM-program.
Selection (top view):
: O 1. Segment, standard position
:O ; (used at 8,16,32 & 64kb EPROMs)
: 2. Segment (used at 32kb u.64kb EPROMs)
:OO
:OO 3. Segment (used at 64kb EPROMs)
:
:O 4. Segment (used at 64kb EPROMs)
: O
Please see at chapter 'SOFTBRENNER' point 'GET ROM', too !
The choice of segments is not only important to get EPROM-programs.
Another interesting possibility is to run up to four different ROM-
programs in a 64kb EPROM !
(11) EPROM-SOCKET
The EPROM-socket is very useful to 'GET' ROMs. If you 'grabb' an EPROM
you are able to save the ROM-program on a disc or you may install it
in the ROM-RAM-slots.
Certainly you can run an EPROM-program in the EPROM-socket.
The ROM-number of the EPROM-socket can be choosen freely between 0-15.
See Point (3) !
You can use the following EPROM-types:
2764 8 kb
27128 16 kb
27256 32 kb
27512 64 kb
or the C-MOS-version:
27C64
27C128 etc.
Attention: The EPROM-notch has to be away from viewer !
;Take care that the computer is switched off while you are
;put an EPROM in/out !
(12) SIMULATOR-RAM 128 KB
This 128 kb static-ram is the most important part of the ROM-RAM-BOX.
It is divided into 8 ROM-RAM-slots which can carry 16 kb each.
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; BASIC SETTINGS
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Top view, left to right side:
(1) On/off EPROM-socket : Away from viewer = OFF
(2) On/off Simulator-RAM-chip : Away from viewer = OFF
(3) ROM-no. EPROM-socket : Up down down down = ROM-number 8
(4) On/off ROM-RAM-slot 0-7 : All up ; = all OFF
(5) On/off writemode : Away from viewer = writemode OFF
; ->green LED off
(8) Akku-Jumper ; : set
(10) Choice of EPROM-segment: : O
; :O
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;THE SOFTBRENNER V1.02
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-L- LOAD & INSTALL
This function allows you to load a ROM-program from disc and install
it in ROM-RAM-slot 0-7. Take care of the SOFTBRENNER's advice !
After resetting the computer the user can use the ROM-programs (mostly
via RSX-command) !
Important:
You should try to avoid running TWO ROMs on the same ROM-number.
That mean: If you run an EPROM in the EPROM-socket or in another
hardware-expansion (harddisccontroller etc.) you should not turn on a
ROM-ROM-slot with the same ROM-number because this overlay would cause
such trouble !
If you want to know what ROM is laying on which ROM-number you can use
the 'SHOW ROM' option of the SOFTBRENNER.
If you want to know wich external EPROMs are connected to the CPC, you
should use this command while EPROM-socket and ROM-RAM-slots are
turned off.
Hint: You are allowed to overlay the build in BASIC-ROM (number 0) and
the AMSDOS-ROM (number 7) !
-Z- SHOW ROMS
This option shows ALL ROMs 0-15 which are connected to the CPC !
ROMs outside ROM-RAM-BOX are displayed,too (the DOS of an external
harddisccontroller for example etc.).
During the display-mode the ROM-numbers are scanned permanentely.
The user gets an overview of all ROM-programs.
This option is useful to proof an installation or to check if there is
a free ROM-RAM-slot or not.
Following informations are displayed:
1. The ROM-name (up to 15 chars)
2. The version-number (1.01 for example)
3. Foreground (Fo)-,Background (Bg)- or Sideway (Si)-ROM
4. The address of the claimed RAM-area
-R- SHOW RSX
This funktion is useful to list all RSX-commands of an ROM-program.
The user can take quick advantage of these RSX-commands after turning
on the computer or after a computer-reset.
-G- GET ROM
This important option encourage the user to 'grabb' ROM-programs.
Please follow the advices given by the SOFTBRENNER !
You can get ROM-programs from an EPROM in the EPROM-socket, from an
EPROM in any connected hardware-expansion or from one of the ROM-RAM-
slots. The 'grabbed'data is ready to install in the ROM-RAM-BOX or
you can save it on disc.
16 kb EPROMS can be 'grabbed'in one move, 32 kb-EPROMs in two moves
and a 64 kb EPROM in four moves. See chapter 'ROM-RAM-BOX', too.
Important:
You should try to avoid running TWO ROMs on the same ROM-number.
That mean: If you run an EPROM in the EPROM-socket or in another
hardware-expansion (harddisccontroller etc.) you should not turn on a
ROM-ROM-slot with the same ROM-number because this overlay would cause
such trouble !
If you want to know what ROM is laying on which ROM-number you can use
the 'SHOW ROM' option of the SOFTBRENNER.
If you want to know wich external EPROMs are connected to the CPC, you
should use this command while EPROM-socket and ROM-RAM-slots are
turned off.
Hint: You are allowed to overlay the build in BASIC-ROM (number 0) and
the AMSDOS-ROM (number 7) !
-S- SAVE ROM
This option is useful to 'grabb' and save ROMs.
Please follow the advices given by the SOFTBRENNER !
Hint: If you type in the filename you may add drive & user:
Example: FILENAME: 1b:cookie.rom -> to save it on user 1,drive b
or FILENAME: cookie.rom -> to save it on current user & drive
-K- CATALOGUE
Displays the catalogue from the current drive.
-E- ERASE ROM
Kills a ROM-program in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7. The memory would be
filled up with hex &FF.
Please follow the advices given by the SOFTBRENNER !
-M- MAKE ROM
This complex option allows the user to create his own ROM !
Please read the instructions in the '#DOC-E-2.TXT' file !
-I- INFO
The user have to choose between some short info about the SOFTBRENNER
and some info about the switches and controls of the ROM-RAM-BOX.
USER
Changes the current USER. Use the '+' and '-' keys !
DRIVE
Selection of the current DRIVE. Use the keys 'A', 'B' and 'C' !
--------------------------------------------------------------------
; TIPS AND HINTS
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SPECIAL INFO ABOUT ROM-NO. 0 & 7
These two ROM-numbers (ROM-places) are different to the other numbers.
Both numbers are occupied by build-in ROMs !
ROM-number 0 is the BASIC-ROM number and ROM-number 7 is occupied by
the AMSDOS-ROM.
But can overlay them by external ROMs.
Please have in mind: You should only put BASIC-like ROMs on number 0
— a patched BASIC for example.
If you put an AMSDOS-ROM on ROM-number 0, CPM will be booted
automatically after switching on the CPC !
If you want to put a ROM-program on ROM-number 7 you may choose
a DOS-ROM. Very tricky DOS' are existing (XDDOS for example which
gives you 716 kb on a 3.5" B-drive !)
Owner of a CPC-PLUS have to know a curious fact:
In the DOS-ROM of the plus machines a routine is implemented which
takes care for the 'nice' menu-part after switching on the computer.
For this routine is jumped by the operating system after turning on
the CPC, you can not choose every ROM to put it on ROM-number 7. It
has to be patched for this conditions.
Please read the hints in the '#DOC-E-2.TXT' file !
What do you have to remind if you want to install a new DOS on ROM-
number 7:
Normally you'll find a DOS-ROM on ROM-number 7. If you want to install
a new DOS on this place, you have to reset the computer after
installing the new ROM ! If you do so the new DOS is initialisized and
you can go on.
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INSTALLATION OF DATA IN THE ROM-RAM-BOX
You'll write data in the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7 if the following conditions
are true:
1. the ROM-number has to be selected
2. the choosen ROM-RAM-slot has to be turned on (switch 4)
3. the RAM-chip has to be switched on (switch 2)
4. the writemode is on (switch 5)
The writeable RAM-area of the simulator-RAM is similar to the
screen (hex &C000-&FFFF).
The installation-job is done by the SOFTBRENNER in a comfortable way.
But if you want to do it yourself, you can do it easily !
You'll find an assembler-source-code on the disc (INSTALL.E).
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DESIGN OF ROM-HEADERS
ROM-programs has to be designed in a special way. That's important
because the CPC operating system needs a special designed header (in
the beginning of each installed ROM-proram) to initialisize the ROM
correctly.
All persons who want to create their own ROM-programs will find an
assembler-source-code on the disc (HEADER.E).
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;PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS
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WHAT'S TO DO IF...
...you turn on then CPC but instead of starting BASIC the computer is running crazy ?
Solution: One or more ROM-programs are corrupted. So they have to be
reinstalled or switched off.
To turn them off seperately use the DIP-switches (4).
If you want to reinstall the programs you have to load the
SOFTBRENNER: Turn of the ROM-RAM-slots 0-7 seperately or
switch them off collectively with (2).
Then you are able to run the SOFTBRENNER from disc.
Turn on the ROM-RAM-slots and examine the ROMs with the
'SHOW ROM' option. Corrupted ROMs has to be reinstalled.
Maybe the EPROM-socket causes such trouble. In this case
turn it off (switch 1) or choose another ROM-number (switch
3).
WHAT'S TO DO IF...
...i have installed a new DOS in ROM-RAM-slot 7 but some trouble
apears after i have tried to load more ROMs from disc ?
Solution: The new DOS has to be initialisized: Reset the computer and
start the SOFTBRENNER again. Now you can going on to install
another ROM-program.
WHAT'S TO DO IF...
...during the 'SHOW ROM' option the display flickers and ROM-names
etc. are displayed wrong ?
1. The trouble is caused by two ROMs laying on the same
ROM-number.
Solution: Turn off one of these ROMs or choose another ROM-number
or take it away !
2. The trouble is caused by an extremely long cable.
Solution: Use shorter cables !
3. The trouble is caused by bad connections.
Solution: Try to connect all components well.
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Additional information to the SOFTBRENNER instructions
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CONTENTS:
— What has changed ?
— How does the ROM generator work ?
— The ROM generator options
— New options of SOFTBRENNER V1.22
— Hints 'n help
Upgraded ROM-RAM-BOX
'Park' ROMs
'Real'ROMs
Cruncher
Problems with crunched programs
Multipart programs
Autostart
Saving
Editor
'PLUS'-DOS-ROM-hint (for PLUS owners only)
'RAM-ROM' selection 8-15
Old versions (V1.02-V1.15)
Extract programs (XTRACT)
Checksum
Softbrenner ROM V1.22
Utility ROM V1.16
Install.asm
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The new SOFTBRENNER 1.22 - what has changed ?
— since version 1.11:
a completely new powerful ROM generator has been implemented. Now it is
possible to integrate several programs into one ROM. There is no limitation
to binary files anymore - now you can also put BASIC programs in a ROM.
Furthermore it is now possible to put files in a ROM which are longer than
16KB (up to about 31KB) - the program will be split up into two ROMs !
You can even 'autostart' your programs (BASIC & binary !!): after having
reset the CPC the 'autostart' program will start automatically.
— since the ROM-RAM-BOX can now be upgraded to 16 'RAM ROMs'the SOFTBRENNER
handles the 'RAM ROMs'8-15, too !
— a ROM editor for quick changes and patches has been implemented. Now you
needn't leave the SOFTBRENNER if you only want to change a RSX name or some
other easy peasy thing.
— right before installing a ROM, the checksum is changed automatically so that
you needn't use the 'CHECKGEN' program anymore.
— the irritating fact that ROM named 'BASIC' or 'CPM ROM' have been considered
as switched off in the 'SHOW ROMs'option has been changed.
— ROMs that don't have a 0,1,2,254 or 255 as their first byte are now
considered as data trash and 'TRASH' will be displayed.
— RSX commands of a ROM can now be printed - quite handy with ROMs with many
RSX commands.
— the new SOFTBRENNER does only run on a CPC 6128 (PLUS) although no E-RAM
is used, so 464 owners can get a 464 version on demand. The new XTRACT option
(since V1.18) does use ERAM block 3 (&C7).
— some options (install, kill, park) can also be done in BASIC using the
corresponding RSX command.
— the colour can now be changed.
— since version 1.15:
ROMs can now be 'parked'very easily.
— since version 1.18:
programs which have been implemented using the ROM generator v1.11-1.22
can now be extracted using the XTRACT option.
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; THE ROM GENERATOR V1.22
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How does the ROM generator work ?
After having started the ROM generator you can fill the currently empty
ROM with the programs you like. The programs can be loaded from disc and
you can choose an RSX command to start the program. The current ROM can
be saved or installed at any time. You can also load a ROM that was generated
using the ROM generator and change it (for example add some new programs).
You can also use the 'GET ROM' option to 'grab' a ROM and change the grabbed
ROM which is now the current ROM.
To change a ROM includes: you can add new programs, change the ROM name, the
versionnumber or the promptmessage (promptmessage= the text a ROM displays when
the CPC is switched on. You can also delete programs using the 'DELETE RSX'
option or you can delete the complete ROM ('ROM delete'= default settings).
You can add a maximum of 32 programs to a ROM. The number of entries is
displayed (at the beginning: 0 of 32). The percentage of free memory in
the ROM is also displayed as well as the current end address of the programs
in the ROM (at the beginning: memory free from &C2E2 FREE 100%).
If a program does no fit into the current ROM it can be split up into two
ROMs. The longest file that can be processed may be about 31KB long (if you
desperately need a program to fit into a ROM you should try to crunch it. See
also Hints 'n help).
There is no limitation to a certain filetype: you can put binary programs
as well as BASIC programs into a ROM. If you want to make the best use
of the available memory in a ROM you should try to use 'real'ROM programs
(programs that run IN the ROM -> they don't need to be copied into the RAM. See
also Hints 'n help).
You have the interesting possibility to 'autostart' a program after a reset
of the CPC (for example you can redefine the keys, change the colours, etc.).
----------------------------------------------------------------------
; The ROM generator options
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The options are mainly self-explaining, so only the main options are
explained here:
-X- ADD RSX
The most important option of the ROM generator: you have to choose a program
that should be integrated into the current ROM.
After having chosen the program you get some information about the file.
Using this information it is ofter much easier to decide how the
program has to be implemented.
You will then be asked to enter some information. For each input the ROM
generator makes a suggestion which you can accept by pressing the ENTER key.
By choosing the suggestion you can get results even if you are in a hurry
(the given suggestions are not always the best choice, but they are only
suggestions which you don't have to accept !).
You may enter the desired name of the RSX command which later starts the
program in the ROM. The ROM generator suggests a command name (normally the
filename of the program). It is important not to use spaces in the command
name since otherwise the command couldn't be executed by BASIC.
You will then be asked what should be done with the program after its
RSX command has been entered. The possibilities are:
-1- only copy into the RAM
-2- copy into the RAM and start
-3- start IN the ROM
Again the ROM generator makes a suggestion which may be accepted by pressing
the ENTER key. In case of BASIC programs you should choose between -1- and -2-.
In case that there is no entryaddress available (Entryaddres: &0000, a screen
for example) you should choose -1-.
If a program is located in the area between &C000-&FFFF it is most probable
that it is a 'real'ROM program and you should choose -3-. In this case you have
to make sure that the startaddress of the program is the same as the address
shown after MEMORY FREE AFTER:&.... IF THIS IS NOT THE CASE THE PROGRAM MUST
BE FREELY RELOCATABLE IF IT SHOULD WORK ! (see also Hints 'n help, 'real'ROMs)
If the program to be implemented is no BASIC program and no 'real'ROM program
the ROM generator asks for the executionaddress and the startaddress. The
startaddress is the address to which the program will be copied after it's
RSX command has been entered. The entryaddress is the address to which the
CPC jumps in order to start the program. Normally you can choose the
suggested addresses (the original addresses).
NOTE: If the original entryaddress is &0000 you MUST change it otherwise the
CPC will reset !
The last input you have to cope with is the question whether the program
should autostart. You can change the autostart option later in the -R- SHOW RSX
option, too. There an autostart program will be marked with a "*".
After you have succesfully entered all the necessary data the program will
be implemented in the current ROM. During the implementation you might encounter
the following problems or messages:
1. No problems at all. No messages. The program fits into the current ROM
and will be implemented.
2. The program is too long for one ROM, it will be split up into two ROMs.
This works as follows: the first part of the program (in the first ROM part)
will be saved or installed and the second part of the program remains in
the memory as the new current ROM. This second ROM can now be changed (you
might add other programs, for example), saved or installed. Before you
save or install the ROM you should change the ROM name (for example ROM #2).
The same goes for the promptmessage: change it (useful if you want to make
clear which ROMs belong together) even leave it out completely.
3. The current ROM is almost filled up already and the program is very long
-> try to delete other programs from the current room in order to free some
bytes.
4. The program is relatively short but the current ROM is almost full already
-> try to delete other programs from the current room in order to free some
bytes or accept that the new program will be split up into two ROMs !
5. The program is longer than about 31KB and therefore too long to be processed
with the ROM generator. You should try to crunch it in order to shorten it
a bit (try the CHEESE CRUNCHER V2.2 by Antoine, great piece of code !!!).
6. The program should run IN the ROM but is longer than about 16KB
-> unfortunately IMPOSSIBLE !
NOTE: For easy handling you should avoid splitting programs up. It is also
not the best thing to do to put the first part of a program into a ROM
which already contains the second part of another ROM.
IMPORTANT: If a program has been split up into two ROMs both ROMs have to be
installed if the program should work ! By the way, the order of the
;ROMs (part ROMs) or their ROM numbers are not relevant.
ANOTHER NOTE: If a program is split up the second part in the second ROM
; automatically gets a dummy RSX command which cannot be
executed by BASIC. You must not change such a dummy RSX into
; an autostart RSX !
You should take care of saving of installing your, now hopefully working,
ROM especially if you change from the ROM generator to the SOFTBRENNER since
some actions of the SOFTBRENNER delete the current ROM (the ROM buffer). These
actions are:
1. LOAD & INSTALL
2. GET ROM
3. SHOW RSX "FROM DISC"
4. SAVE ROM
5. XTRACT
If one of these actions put a ROM generated by the ROM generator into the
ROM buffer it will be considered as the new current ROM !
----------------------------------------------------------------------
;New options of the SOFTBRENNER V1.22
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Since SOFTBRENNER v1.15 you have a new option (and a new RSX command):
-P- PARK ROMs.
Using this option you can switch off a background ROM (first byte &01)
WITHOUT a) switching off the 'RAM ROM socket'
b) using the !ROMOFF command
c) deleting the ROM
Parked ROMs will not initialised anymore and therefore are NOT active.
Using the same option again you can 'unpark' the ROM again. The park option
changes the first byte of a background ROM from &01 into &FE. You can
have the same effect by using the editor but the park option is even easier.
Another new option in the main menu is the -F- COLOUR SELECTION. If you don't
like the white background just press the F key.
Since SOFTBRENNER v1.18 you have the new option -X- XTRACT.
This new feature makes it now possible to extract and save programs from
ROMs. For technical reasons this works only with ROMs generated with
the ROM generator v1.11-1.22. The first version v1.02 is not supported
since those ROMs could contain only one program anyway !
The new possibility is quite handy for utility compilations (if you want
to 'recycle' old programs in new ROMs). Just extract the desired programs
from the old ROMs using the XTRACT option and save them. After that you can
generate a new ROM using the 'old'programs.
NOTE: 'Real'programs can cause problems since these are normally compiled
for an exact address in the ROM (this is not the case for freely
relocatable programs which are, saddly enough, only very few). If you
have extracted a 'real'ROM program you can normally not be sure that
it can be stored at it's original address (therefore it wouldn't work).
So, be careful !
----------------------------------------------------------------------
; Hints 'n help
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Upgraded ROM-RAM-BOX 256KB - 16 RAM ROMs
Normally hardware upgrades (at least if the device to be upgraded was not
designed for an upgrade) cause problems. Fortunately the only problem
with the ROM-RAM-BOX upgrade is that now two ROMs have to share one switch
-> switch (4).
If you use one of the 8 DIP switches now always two ROMs are switched on or
off: ROM n and ROM n+8 (the ROMs which are displayed next to each other in
the SOFTBRENNER option -Z- SHOW ROMs).
Examples:
You switch off 'RAM ROM socket' 0 -> 'RAM ROM socket' 0 and 8 are off
" " " " 1 -> " ;1 and 9 are off
" " on " 8 -> " ;8 and 15 are on
and so on...
If you want to switch off explicitly one of those two ROMs without switching
off the other as well you can do that by using the !ROMOFF command of the
SOFTBRENNERs.
Example:
You want to use all ROMs exept for 3 and 5 and 6:
!ROMOFF,3,5,6 -> ROM 3,5 and 6 will be switched off (only by software).
In case you want to initialise ALL ROMs again you could type !ROMOFF,240
(240 is just a 'dummy ROM') -> all ROMs exept for 240 will be initalised.
If a program (for example DISC'O'MAGIC) reinitialises all ROMs after being
started (and even that ROM which you don't want to be) you could delete
the ROM using the -E- DELETE ROM or !KILL,no.
But there is a better solution to the problem:
You can park the unwanted ROM using the -P- PARK ROM option or !ROMPARK,no.
After a reset the ROM is actually no more present. 'PARKED' will be displayed.
If you want to recover the ROM just use the park option again. You can only
park background ROM which are the most common ROMs.
You can park ROM manually, too: 'grab' the undesired ROM using the -G- GET
ROM option. Then change the first byte of the ROM (at &4000) into a &FE by
using the editor. To recover it again repeat the procedure and set the first
byte (at &4000) to its original value (a &01 for background ROMs).
It is a good idea to put ROMs that belong together 'next to each other'
(for example MAXAM 1.5 and PROTEXT). You should do that also with two
part ROMs since then you switch on or off always both parts.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
'PARK' ROMs
See 'New options of SOFTBRENNERS V1.22' !
----------------------------------------------------------------------
'Real'ROMs
There are two main kinds of programs that can be implemented into the
current ROM: a) Programs that will be copied into the RAM or copied and
; started after the RSX command was used
;b) Programmes that run IN the ROM. This kind of program makes the
; best use of the memory available in a ROM, because:
; 1. less ROM for organisation purposes is used
; 2. no RAM will be used
These programs have to fulfil certain criteria: they have to be able to run in
ROM (it must not contain selfmodifying code, etc.) and they must be able to
run at the address displayed in the ROM generator (MEMORY FREE AFTER:&....).
Example: in an empty current ROM the code of a 'real'ROM program can start
at &C2E2. Either your program is freely relocatable or the desired program
must be assembled for this startaddress (&C2E2). Of course this is only possible
if you have the sourcecode of the program. If this is not the case you have to
use the 'normal'way of implementing the program (copy into the RAM).
----------------------------------------------------------------------
CRUNCHER
If a program is longer than about 31KB or if you don't want a program to split
up into two ROMs you can try to crunch it.
We recommend the CHEESE CRUNCHER V2.2 by Antoine which is always good
for best results. As a good example for how useful crunching is, serves
best the wellknown DISC'O'MAGIC by Joker. Uncrunched about 16KB long it needs
to be split up into two ROMs. Crunched with the CHEESE CRUNCHER it is only
about 13KB long and can be put into ONE ROM together with other programs
without any problems. You see, before putting a program in a ROM you should
always try to crunch it.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
PROBLEMS WITH CRUNCHED PROGRAMS
Sometimes programs crunched with the CHEESE CRUNCHER do not work after being
put in a ROM. An explanation for this effect might be that the programs
get a very high startaddress after being crunched. Quite often this leads
to the effect that, while being copied and decrunched, the program overwrites
RAM areas that are reserved for the 'RSX system'.
Solution:
You could try to enter a lower startaddress (and also a lower entryaddress)
in the corresponding ROM generator menu. Sometimes you can also copy the
program into the screen memory (at &C000). This works, of course, only if
the crunched program is shorter than &4000 bytes and if the decrunch buffer
is not located at an address higher than &C000 !
Maybe you can change some of the crunching-parameters: try to alter the
buffer-address (&C000 and &C400 for example) !
----------------------------------------------------------------------
MULTIPART PROGRAMS
Multipart programs can be implemented in a ROM quite easily, too:
often multipart programs consist of a small BASIC loader and the binary
main code. It is very common that the BASIC loader does nothing but loading
and starting the main code. In this case you can completely leave out the
BASIC loader.
Example:
10 MEMORY &7FFF
20 LOAD"MAIN",&8000
30 CALL &8000
In this case only the program "MAIN" is important.
The following example is slightly different:
10 MEMORY &7FFF
20 LOAD"SCREEN",&C000
30 LOAD"MAIN",&8000
40 CALL &8000
In this case, if you don't want to leave out the screen you must modify the
BASIC program a bit:
10 MEMORY &7FFF
20 !SCREEN
30 !MAIN
After the modification save the BASIC program again. In the ROM generator
you can now implement all parts of the program (-R- ADD RSX). The BASIC program
can be given a desired RSX name (for example RSX name 'GAME') the screen must
get the RSX 'SCREEN' and the main code must get the RSX 'MAIN'br.
In the -R- ADD RSX option 'GAME' must be defined as 'copy into the RAM and
start', 'SCREEN' as 'only copy into the RAM' and 'MAIN' as 'copy into the RAM
and start'.
After a complete implementation you can start the program with !GAME.
This example shows an important detail which has to be taken into
consideration: sometimes program parts are loaded to addresses that
are not their original startaddresses (LOAD"MAIN",&8000 instead of
LOAD"MAIN"->let's say the original startaddress is &4000). While implementing
those programs you must not choose the suggested address (here: &4000) but
choose the correct address (here: &8000). The same goes with the entryaddress:
the program might be saved with the entryaddress &4000 but it must be started
with CALL &8000 since it will be loaded to address &8000. So, you must choose
&8000 as the new entryaddress.
It is, of course, no disadvantage to crunch the screen as well as the main
code.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
AUTOSTART
Autostart is a very handy thing, although there are sometimes problems
with programs that reinitialise all ROMs when started (for example
DISC'O'MAGIC). In this case the autostart program would be started over
and over again. Therefore a tricky keyscan routine is implemented in ROM
generator ROMs: to prevent a program from being autostarted just press the
SPACE bar during the initialisation !
Problems can also occur if an autostarted program wants to use RSX commands
of ROMs that have not yet been initialised since the autostart program
interrupted the initialisation process. In such cases install the ROM with
the autostart programs on a ROM number as low as possible since the ROMs
are initialised downwards from 15 to 0 (7-0 at CPC 464).
Autostart is available since version 1.16 for BASIC programs, too.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
SAVING
Filename input in the SOFTBRENNER/ROM generator follows the same rules
as in BASIC. This means that you can also determine the drive and user
together with the filename.
Example:
Filename: 0B:TEST.ROM -> File "TEST.ROM" will be saved on drive b, user 0
Filename: B:TEST.ROM -> File "TEST.ROM" will be saved on drive b, current user
----------------------------------------------------------------------
EDITOR
Besides quick patches you can do another handy thing using the editor:
you can switch ROMs off (without deleting them) by setting their first
byte (normally 0, 1, 2 or &80) to a value <> 0, 1, 2 or &80 (for example
&FE or &FF). After a reset this ROM will not be initialised anymore !
If you have chosen a &FE as the first byte 'PARKED' will be displayed
whilst 'EMPTY' is displayed if you chose a &FF. This 'park' method
can be done more easily using the -P- PARK ROMs option !
In addition you can change the name of a ROM or the promptmessage of a ROM
(useful with ROMs that have not been generated using the ROM generator).
Example: You want to suppress the promptmessage of a ROM.
You have to search the address in the ROM where the promptmessage is
stored. Then you have to look, which byte marks the end of the string
(the message). Frequently used bytes are &00 or &FF. You have to enter
this byte at the beginning of the promptmessage. If the promptmessage
reads for example "MUSIC ROM ACTIVE" you have to set the end mark instead
of the "M". After this procedure you have to install the ROM again and you
can test it. You can for example play around with some control codes such as
10 (&0A)->linefeed or 13(&0D)->carriage return which means that you insert
them before your new end mark (for example &0A,&0D,&00 -> lf,cr, END).
----------------------------------------------------------------------
'PLUS'-DOS-ROM-hint (for PLUS owners only)
We have patched the AMSDOS v0.50 (the normal 6128 AMSDOS) so that you can
just put in in 'RAM ROM socket' 7 ! You can now have extemly easy 100%
disc compatibility to the 'old'generation. If you want the patch - just
contact us.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
'RAM-ROM' selection 8-15
Some words on putting ROMs in the 'RAM ROM sockets'8-15:
Due to uncompatible programming some programs don't work if they are installed
above the DOS.
Example: The DOS has no. 7, a ROM is in 'RAM ROM socket' 14 installed. In the
worst case the program in ROM 14 is badly programmed and is doesn't work
correctly.
The reason:
Since the ROMs are initialised from no. 15 downwards to no. 1 and in this
case the DOS is not the first program to be initialised it does not get
the 'normal'workspace RAM (at &A700) but possibly &A200.
If the program on no. 14 needs the DOS workspace at &A700 it would not work !
Solution:
To make sure that the DOS is the first ROM to reserve its workspace
you should place it on the highest possible number (ideal is 15).
'Lower' DOS ROMs will be deleted or the built-in AMSDOS on number 7
will be overlayed with another ROM. After you have put the DOS on number
15 it would be extra-smart so 'grab' the built-in AMSDOS ROM, 'park' it
and put it back on number 7. Although the AMSDOS on number 7 is not active, this
method ensures compatibility even with 'dumb' programs which directly jump
into ROM number 7.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
OLD VERSIONS
Since the ROM generator has been completely reprogrammed ROMs generated
with the SOFTBRENNER v1.02 can not be used in the new ROM generator.
ROMs generated with the newer versions v1.11-v1.15 are cross compatible.
Generally speaking you should always use the newest version of the ROM
generator. Since version 1.16 it is possible to autostart BASIC programs. This
new feature needs a lot more complex routines in the ROM header. This is
the reason why ROM generated with versions after v1.16 are no longer
compatible with the older versions (see also EXTRACT PROGRAMS (XTRACT).
----------------------------------------------------------------------
EXTRACT PROGRAMS (XTRACT)
If you want to integrate routines from older ROM generator ROMs into new
ROMs you can simply extract the desired routines by using the new XTRACT
option of the SOFTBRENNER. Just extract the routines you want, save them
and generate new compilations.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CHECKSUM
Before a ROM is installed it will be tested whether it contains a standard
checksum routine. If this is the case the SOFTBRENNER checks whether the
checksum is correct. If not, the SOFTBRENNER corrects the checksum and
displays a message. Normally this happens with edited ROMs or with ROMs
generated with the ROM generator.
Attention: a checksum message can also be an indicator for a defect ROM
(maybe a defect ROM has been 'grabbed'and saved). In case of an uncontrolled
alternation of the ROM the checksum is wrong and during the initialisation
of the ROM a 'Checksum error' is displayed. The SOFTBRENNER always corrects
the checksum even if the ROM is defect ! Therefore the user has to decide
whether the message 'Checksum will be corrected'is an indicator for a defect
ROM or an edited or new generated ROM !
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
SOFTBRENNER ROM V1.22
The following RSX commands are implemented:
!SB ; - starts the SOFTBRENNER
!INSTALL,(0-15) - installs a ROM (data at &4000) on 'RAM ROM' 0-15
!KILLROM,(0-15) - kills a ROM on 'RAM ROM' 0-15
!HELP ;- lists the ROMs 0-15
!HELP,no - lists RSX commands of ROM number
!ROMHELP - same as HELP
!ROMOFF,no,no... - initialises ALL ROMs (1-15) exept for those chosen by
; number.
; Example: ROM 1,3 and 15 are not wanted.
; SO: !ROMOFF,1,3,15
; Attention: Some ROM programs initialise all ROMs
; after being started and therefore switch
; the ROMs disabled using the !ROMOFF command
; again (for example: DISC'O'MAGIC)
!ROMPARK,no - (UN)park a ROM on 'RAM ROM' number
----------------------------------------------------------------------
UTILITY ROM V1.16 (a small compilation of utilities)
!HELP ; - lists the ROMs 0-15
!HELP,no ;- lists the RSX commands of ROM number
!75HZ ; - switches to 75HZ frame rate
!60HZ ; - switches to 60HZ frame rate
!50HZ ; - switches to 50HZ frame rate
!CRTC.RESET - resets the CRTC
!GCAT ; - CAT & information about entries on other USERs
!GCAT,no ;- same as above but also switches to USER no
!RAMCHECK - information about attached RAM
!R ; - 'saves'the memory into the E-RAM (block 0-2)
!U ; - 'recalls'the memory from the E-RAM
!PRE ;- sets colours, SPEED KEY, key definitions
!KA ; - CAT from drive A without switching to drive A
!KB ; - CAT from drive B without switching to drive B
!KC ; - CAT from drive C without switching to drive C
!INSTALL,no - installs a ROM (data at &4000) on 'RAM ROM' number
Very useful for programmers are the commands !R and !U (newest version):
before you start a program which might cause the CPC to hang up 'save' the
memory (all settings and programs) in the E-RAM and then test your program.
If the CPC hangs up, just reset the computer and 'recall'the memory using the
!U command. If an ASIC window is open it will be closed before the memory is
saved.
All of tools are 'real'ROMs. That means that they don't use any RAM except for
their workspace !
----------------------------------------------------------------------
INSTALL.ASM
On the disc there is a fully documented assembler listing (MAXAM) which
demonstrates how you transfer a ROM into the ROM-RAM-BOX. The difference
to the older listing is that the ROM to be installed (at &4000) will not
be erased anymore.
----------------------------------------------------------------------

★ GROUP: INICRON
★ YEAR: 1995
★ AUTHORS: ZAQ/INICRON , WSX/INICRON

★ AMSTRAD CPC ★ DOWNLOAD ★

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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.