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TI99 drive on PC ?


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We'll have to let Tursi chime in on this one... I don't want to make any assumptions. But up until the most recent release of Classic99, it did not support DSK files. It uses (F)iles (I)n (A) (D)isk format. You do not transfer a disk, you transfer the individual files contained in that disk. TIFILES is the term for the format.

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Good to hear. How can we be notified when the next run is available, and do you know about how much one will cost?


Yeah, I read about the 360/300 rpm reading ability, which is a huge bonus. I have a couple of TEAC dual 3.5/5.25 drives I am looking forward to putting to use. I have been unable to get the drives to work properly on the TI, and am about ready to throw in the towel. It will be nice to have a single, unified method for reading old disks, instead of the various hodge-podges I have in place now -- though 1541 and a modified Amiga 1020 work pretty well for creating D64 images, and I can read 1581 disks on the Amiga with a couple of different filesystems. But I have nothing easy for TI stuff, just yet. And with me about to fire up my Atari 800XL in the next 12 months, I am going to need more more more more more.


Sign up at the website at kryoflux.com. That will put you in the queue, so to speak. When boards are available, we first mail those people to give them first opportunity. I expect the price will be the same as it is now.


As to drives, we recommend your normal HD PC drive for 3.5". It should work with any Shugart compatible drive, but we have the best results, and the device has been tested the most, with your usual HD drive. Also, I don't know if your dual drive is the same (it may not be), but in general we have found that dual drives are not the best quality.

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I'm not sure what all this talk is about "emulator formats"... Classic99 runs standard TI files formats... if it runs on your machine, it runs on Classic99 with NO conversions...


As far as DSK files, you can make up the DSK files using a free program called TI99-Dir.


We refer to them as "sector formats", i.e. normal sector-by-sector images. I only used the term "emulator formats" because the other guy did :)

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This is not a concern in the TI-99/4A world. There are about two pieces of software that need any formatting information beyond the actual sector data, and they're long since broken.


If it was a concern, anyway, the PC99 format is defined to contain all that information already (even though it tends not to in practice).


Well that is nice to hear. I should note though, that copy protection is not the only reason for doing low-level images. For example, at the Software Preservation Society, we require that information see if a disk has been commercially duplicated (important when seeing if a game is authentic), and has not been written by more than one different drive (to ensure it has not changed since mastering).


Another reason is that sampling a disk in this way, you can often retrieve data that the original machine could not. Not if the data is really bad of course, but in our experience many errors tend to be reading problems rather than actual bad data.


Coming from the Amiga world, we have actually managed to preserve quite a few titles that no longer worked because of the protection. Dungeon Master being a famous example. It used an invalid encoding, which no longer worked on the original machine, but we were able to recover and preserve it using a low level technique.


Not always appropriate, but something to consider for commercially mastered disks.

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I understand the usage in other communities, I just think you may be wasting your time going too far down that road for the TI community, and especially expecting everyone to accept yet another file format (we are slowly trying to condense the half-dozen or so that we have now already ;) ). TI Software just never became that big a market - I would estimate better than 80% of "commercial" software was duplicated by people in their living rooms rather than on commercial devices, and as far as I know there are rather few known titles not already dumped. At any rate, the PC99 format already contains space for the inter-sector information, which could likely be adapted to actually work. ;)


Anyway, that's neither here nor there, and I'm not intending to belittle your efforts, just to help prioritize them.


To answer an earlier question, Classic99 does not expect a header on disk image files. It uses a sector dump in the same way as V9T9 does (which is the format of most disk images out there). There's enough information in that to use the file reliably. Classic99 does not create new emulator-specific file formats, the file formats the community created created back in the mid-80s have all the information we need. ;)

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