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So I got me a SIDE2 Cart and a CF card reader for my PC - Now What?


bugbiter
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Yesterday my brand new SIDE2 cart arrived! I can load games and stuff with the switch up and Spartados with the CF Harddisk comes up if I boot with the switch down (but only if I boot with option, otherwise CF card wont recognize??)

 

I 've read the documentary on Lotharek's website and I've watched the videos that are linked there but I can't figure out how I can copy files from PC onto the CF card so that i can use them on my Atari 130 XE. The Atari Harddisk partitions on the CF card seem to be invisible for Windows..

 

I'd like to play around with my own stuff on the hard disks thing, can I use the hard disks with turbo basic also?

 

Is there more info for SIDE2 newbies somewhere? The threads I found about SIDE so far are way too advanced for me right now..

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Thanks, flashjazzcat, for the documentation!

 

I've got a preconfigured CF card from lotharek with loads of games on it. I also can access hard disk drives C: to G: (alias c3: to c7:), all empty with 65516 free sectors.

So I guess I don't need to do the Fdisk setup for rhe compact flash card.

 

Do I really 'format' the Card on the PC now in order to be able to copy files later? It says so in your walktrough.

Of course all the preinstalled XEX files be erased after that? I'll save them to the PC first for later use.

 

I have FAT32 on my CF card, not FAT16 like in your example. Do I just use "format drive" in windows explorer? Does this destroy anything else from lotharek's preparations?

 

Thank you for explaining!

 

"... If everything looks right, remove the disk or CF card from the adapter (if necessary, power down first), and connect to the PC. The PC’s operating system should recognize the MBR partition table, and say that the FAT partition requires formatting. Go ahead and format theAPT Partition Editor and Utilities (3rd Edition) 10 partition, being sure (since we chose FAT16 when setting it up) that “FAT” is used (not “FAT32” in this particular example), and for best performance with FATFS.SYS, use a cluster size of 4 or 8KB. Once that’s done, copy some files into the newly formatted FAT16 partition on the PC, making sure they have 8.3 names (no long filenames for the moment). Now, remove the disk or card from the PC, reconnect to the Atari, and power - on again... "

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Do I really 'format' the Card on the PC now in order to be able to copy files later? It says so in your walktrough.

If you want to copy content from the FAT part (accessible by Windows) to the APT partitions, then you'll need a FAT16 partition on the card, which becomes readable by SpartaDOS X when you install the FATFS.SYS driver after having configured an external FAT partition using FDISK as explained in the manual. Any files in the FAT16 partition then become readable on the Atari. If you decide to prepare another CF card as per the external partition walkthrough, then you would indeed format it on the PC: this would only erase content in the FAT, leaving any APT partitions untouched (this is why we have the protective MBR partition table).

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I'm sorry, I am not an expert on file systems, nor do I have any experience with spartaDos. To be honest, I don't understand most of all that.

 

I don't want to copy from one part of the CF card tp another,

all I want to do is get files from my PC to the CF card so that I can acces them within the hard disk system provided by the side2 cartridge.

 

My CF card seems to have two partitions: one FAT32 with 3,22GB, one with 512 MB but no info on filesystem.

So you say I need to make a FAT16 partition to get it readable on the Atari? I dont quite understand, I have just copied some files from PC to the Hard disk in Spartados using SIO2PC. It worked. So where are these files? I can't see them on the card using my pc's card reader...

 

Sorry, I'm confused. Seems I am the dumbest SIDE2 owner on earth.

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Yesterday my brand new SIDE2 cart arrived! I can load games and stuff with the switch up and Spartados with the CF Harddisk comes up if I boot with the switch down (but only if I boot with option, otherwise CF card wont recognize??)

 

I 've read the documentary on Lotharek's website and I've watched the videos that are linked there but I can't figure out how I can copy files from PC onto the CF card so that i can use them on my Atari 130 XE. The Atari Harddisk partitions on the CF card seem to be invisible for Windows..

 

I'd like to play around with my own stuff on the hard disks thing, can I use the hard disks with turbo basic also?

 

Is there more info for SIDE2 newbies somewhere? The threads I found about SIDE so far are way too advanced for me right now..

 

Ok let's start from the beginning.

 

1) Forget everything you know or read so far. We might get confused somewhere in this story, so we start from scratch.

 

2) You CF card probably comes with a few Atari partitions (which are indeed not visible by windows/OSX/Linux, so that is not a fault) and a FAT32 partition.

 

3) It is NOT possible to transfer files from that FAT32 to your Atari partitions.

 

4) The FAT32 partition is usable on the ATARI as a READ ONLY partition, which can be accessed by a special FAT32 loader. You'll see this loader when you start your Atari with the SIDE2 cartridge attached and the switch is in UP position. Then you can start the binary files (most of the time that is .XEX, but never ATR) that are stored on that CF card. I guess the prepared CF card Lotharek sells has .XEX files on it... but i'm not sure -> you might be able to check that on your windows computer.

 

5) The only partition visible on Windows is that FAT32 partition mentioned in step 2, 3 and 4. So if you want to play games with your SIDE2 cart, put the .XEX files (again: not ATR, but also not .ROM!) on the FAT32 partition and start your ATARI + SIDE2 with switch in UP position.

 

6) Let me know if step 1-5 are clear and do work.

 

Then there is the story with the ATARI partitions.

 

a) The Atari Partitions are for use with SDX or with another DOS if you use SIDE2 in combination with Ultimate 1MB.I concentrate now on use without U1MB.

 

b) If you put your SIDE2 in SDX mode (switch down) you can access the partition Lotharek prepared. These partitions are empty, but you can fill them yourself.

 

c) You could save a home made BASIC program to those partitions by doing this:

 

boot SDX (SIDE2 switch in down position)

after the D1: prompt type BASIC and press return

type in a basic program like : 10 PRINT "SIDE2 is Amazing":RUN

 

you can save it to one of the ATARI partitions by typing "SAVE D3:TEST.BAS"

 

d) If you want to be able to transfer files from PC to these Atari partitions (which is probably not needed since you can use the FAT32 suggestion I posted above in steps 1-5), you have to do some more.

 

e) Now comes the documentation of FJC. To be able to transfer from PC to Atari partitions you'll need a FAT16 partition (not FAT32, and it's also limited to a max. partition size!) ...

 

f) If you followed FJC's steps, and you install the right FATFS.SYS driver in config.sys of SDX you should be able to transfer files from FAT partition to Atari partitions.

 

 

Could you tell us why you want to transfer files from PC to those Atari partitions. Again: if you want to be able to play games, you don't have to... the FAT32 will do what you want.

 

If you want to be able to transfer amazing tools like The Last Word, and you don't have solutions like Sio2PC/APE/Sio2SD/Sio2IDE/Sio2USB/Sio2BT ... you indeed might need to follow the d,e,f steps... But since you declare yourself as being a newbie, I'm wondering if this is the case or not.

 

Good luck, and feel free to ask more!

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Thanks a lot for the explanation!

 

Well, I am a newbie concerning SIDE2 cartridge, not Atari8bit.

I've had my 800xl with floppy since 1984 and never quite let go. I have now sio2pc with APE, several 400s,800s,600xl,800xl,130xe and a 1200xl ntsc. Most other machines are pal ones. None of them has any extra RAM extension. I did lots of projects back then using Turbo Basic or MAC/65 with Dos2.5. Two years ago I discovered WUDSN IDE and love it! I use it with ATASM because it has the mac65 syntax.

 

I got me the side2 cart mainly because I saw these amazing videos by Phaeron. I really would like to convert some own footage and play it live on my 130xe. To do that, i figure, I have to copy the movie data onto the cart somehow so i can play it high speed from the hard drive.

Also, I would like to get my own APAC239i photo viewer running from the cart, taking benefit from the fast transfer rates. Starting the viewer it crashed after the splash screen, I assume lomem is too high with no extended memory on a vanilla 130xe. I'll try to relocate my code above lomem, see if that works. Hope i dont need ram expansion for now.

 

So, the state of things right now:

1) The xex loader is working perfectly, there is a huge library of games, demos, anims and tools on the cf card all sorted alphabetically, thnks to lotharek, so no problem here. So your steps 1-5 are ok.

2) if i set the switch down and boot the machine to spartados, i have 5 drives ready. C, d, e, f, g. But When called, the prompt says D3, D4, D5, D6, D7. this is already confusing me. In APE I Also have drives D1-D8, do I have to switch those off in APE while using sdx to avoid mix-ups?

 

So I know the Fat32 partition is there and working, and the 'windows-invisible' atari drive partitions also.

Is there a chance that the FAT16 partition which I need for windows exchange has been set up already by lotharek? How can I find out?

 

P.S. Thank you for your patience!

Edited by bugbiter
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Thanks a lot for the explanation!

 

Well, I am a newbie concerning SIDE2 cartridge, not Atari8bit.

I've had my 800xl with floppy since 1984 and never quite let go. I have now sio2pc with APE, several 400s,800s,600xl,800xl,130xe and a 1200xl ntsc. Most other machines are pal ones. None of them has any extra RAM extension. I did lots of projects back then using Turbo Basic or MAC/65 with Dos2.5. Two years ago I discovered WUDSN IDE and love it! I use it with ATASM because it has the mac65 syntax.

 

I got me the side2 cart mainly because I saw these amazing videos by Phaeron. I really would like to convert some own footage and play it live on my 130xe. To do that, i figure, I have to copy the movie data onto the cart somehow so i can play it high speed from the hard drive.

Also, I would like to get my own APAC239i photo viewer running from the cart, taking benefit from the fast transfer rates. Starting the viewer it crashed after the splash screen, I assume lomem is too high with no extended memory on a vanilla 130xe. I'll try to relocate my code above lomem, see if that works. Hope i dont need ram expansion for now.

 

So, the state of things right now:

1) The xex loader is working perfectly, there is a huge library of games, demos, anims and tools on the cf card all sorted alphabetically, thnks to lotharek, so no problem here. So your steps 1-5 are ok.

2) if i set the switch down and boot the machine to spartados, i have 5 drives ready. C, d, e, f, g. But When called, the prompt says D3, D4, D5, D6, D7. this is already confusing me. In APE I Also have drives D1-D8, do I have to switch those off in APE while using sdx to avoid mix-ups?

 

So I know the Fat32 partition is there and working, and the 'windows-invisible' atari drive partitions also.

Is there a chance that the FAT16 partition which I need for windows exchange has been set up already by lotharek? How can I find out?

 

P.S. Thank you for your patience!

If booting to Spartados and you want to use the APE as SIO drives then the only drives that can be seen by the Atari are APE drive 1 and drive 2,,, because drive 3 through 7 are seen as partitions (not drives). also drive 8 would become and SIO APE drive or ramdisk. In APE leave the drives 3-7 empty. change working directory to C:> and you can copy from D1: or D2: to D3:-D7.

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I thought it's a good Idea getting aquainted with SpartaDos a litte (finally) and I'm begiining to understand why nobody seems to be interested in copying files onto the CF card in windows.

 

I never thought it could be so much fun copying 100 or so files from D1 (APE) to D4: (Hard drive) using SpartaDos! So fast, so convenient! It feels like my Atari has finally grown up and behaves like a MS-Dos computer :-)

 

My BGP Viewer now runs on the Hard drive and one picture (20K) is loading in about 3 Secs :-))) Wow!

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No, that is exactly what we want! SpartaDOS-X is better than M$-DOS, and we want to prove that!

 

That's what I meant. But bugbiter wrote that his Atari finally behaves like a MS-DOS computer, and that would be my worst nightmare if I noticed my Atari 8bit would behave like that :D

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Not my fault, The Spartados manual somewhere even says they tried to give it the feel of MS-Dos.. ;-))

 

On the PC I hated MS-Dos. On the Atari Spartados seems to do a pretty good Job.

The blue screen and Atari font makes it fun for me :-)

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Question: With the FATFS.SYS installed, what driver number is the partition assigned to? I mean, I have other means to get the files back and forth, but this seems quite cool.

The external FAT partitions (which will become readable once FATFS.SYS is installed) will be referenced by whatever drive numbers you assigned to them in FDISK.

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I can't get my SIDE2 card into an 800! The Cart is somehow wider than normal. Did you manage?

 

Out of curiosity, is the bottom ~2 cm of both cartridge sides machined off? (Mine is, so obviously it was known that the cart is too wide for some Atari's. Comparing it to an original "brown" Atari cart, it it close to 5 mm wider. OTOH, it is a nice looking cart, and fits right in the XL/XE (probably not the 1200XL).

 

-Larry

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Yes it it kind of smaller on the bottom, but it seems to be cast that way.

Looks to me as if the narrow area is not going high enough on the cart so it stops before the contacts reach the socket in the 800.

How can i dismantle the cart to file off the excess plastic???

Id never file off my beloved 800 or 400 nor 1200 :-)

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  • 1 year later...

I just got my U1MB installed today and am now looking to get the Side2 up and running. Thanks to all above who have shared useful info.

 

I have a basic question. Does the Side2 use Type 1 or Type 2 CF cards? Also, is it possible to use an SD card in a CF adapter? That would allow me to avoid getting a CF reader for my computer.

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No, that is exactly what we want! SpartaDOS-X is better than M$-DOS, and we want to prove that!

 

Ok, so what is better in Spartados-x compared to MS-DOS, and why? To me it looks and feels just like MS-DOS with a different but similar file system.

Edited by gargoyle
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Ok, so what is better in Spartados-x compared to MS-DOS, and why? To me it looks and feels just like MS-DOS with a different but similar file system.

Wow, you really dug up an old post. I can't find it at all now to attempt to put it in context.

 

I would assume that I was speaking of the new *UX type commands, flexibility of disk format and sector size, not relying on OS CIO devices (like M$-DOS does with the BIOS ROM). SDX is an operating system, not just a DOS over a BIOS.

 

Read the SDX manual and see all the features the latest version has.

 

Just google SpartaDOS-X or go to spartados.com.

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