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CoCo Multi-Pak


Casey
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I hope you all will pardon my ignorance because aside from some casual usage of CoCo 2 back in the day, I don't have much experience with them, but the Multi-Pak I think is an interesting device and I'd like to know more about how it worked practically.

 

Let's say I have one of these plugged into the expansion port, and in it, I have a disk controller and the modem pak plugged into it. In practice, how does one use both of these devices at the same time, say, to save a file from the modem onto the disk? I looked through the owner's manual for this device and I can see you can POKE a location in BASIC to tell it which slot to make active, so it makes sense that you could do this in machine language, but were many programs written to take advantage of a system expanded this way?

 

I come from a background with the TI 99/4A with its single expansion port (although the cartridge port was a separate thing from that) and I'm used to many devices sharing the port, but they were all controlled through a different mechanism on the TI, and any device was usable by any program without modification. Just curious about how this Multi-Pak worked...

 

Thanks for indulging me!

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I hope you all will pardon my ignorance because aside from some casual usage of CoCo 2 back in the day, I don't have much experience with them, but the Multi-Pak I think is an interesting device and I'd like to know more about how it worked practically.

 

Let's say I have one of these plugged into the expansion port, and in it, I have a disk controller and the modem pak plugged into it. In practice, how does one use both of these devices at the same time, say, to save a file from the modem onto the disk? I looked through the owner's manual for this device and I can see you can POKE a location in BASIC to tell it which slot to make active, so it makes sense that you could do this in machine language, but were many programs written to take advantage of a system expanded this way?

 

I come from a background with the TI 99/4A with its single expansion port (although the cartridge port was a separate thing from that) and I'm used to many devices sharing the port, but they were all controlled through a different mechanism on the TI, and any device was usable by any program without modification. Just curious about how this Multi-Pak worked...

 

Thanks for indulging me!

 

I am fairly new to the CoCo's, but have a mostly new CoCo 3, and a couple CoCo 2s and a CoCo 1, and Two of the MPI and one of the RS-232 Packs.

 

From what I understand, the Switch on the MPI selects Which Port is active on a Reset..

 

The MPI is designed to have the Disk Controller, like the FD-500 or FD-501 or FD-502 or even CoCoSDC in Slot #4 and the RS-232 Pack in Slot #2. and be able to have them both be accessed, since they are mapped into different Memory Locations..

 

I haven't tried it, but I believe that you want Slot #4 Active, so the RS-DOS ROMS are active, and when your run your Terminal Program, it can access the RS-232 Cart's Port with no Issues..

 

MarkO

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Interesting - I knew they would have figured out a way to use more than one device at a time (otherwise it isn't much of an expansion device) - just didn't really know how it did its thing. The TI worked pretty much the same way - the devices shared a common address space in the memory map, but certain bits in the CRU determined which device was mapped in.

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Interesting - I knew they would have figured out a way to use more than one device at a time (otherwise it isn't much of an expansion device) - just didn't really know how it did its thing. The TI worked pretty much the same way - the devices shared a common address space in the memory map, but certain bits in the CRU determined which device was mapped in.

The RS-2232 Pack has a Terminal Program in ROM, but that is MAPPED into the same Memory as the R-DOS ROM: H&C000..

 

But the I/O is different:

Disk System: &FF40 to &FF5F

RS-232 Pack: &FF68 to &FF6B

 

MarkO

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I never owned a Multipak interface but I have one coming. Primarily because I wanted my CoCo SDC always plugged in and want to use the rest as a "kiosk" to play my actual cart games :) It needs to be modded to work in a CoCo 3 (the one coming to me already is) and I can tell you that it is rare enough that if you are thinking about one to test it out it will run you almost the price of a CoCo 3 itself ;)

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I never owned a Multipak interface but I have one coming. Primarily because I wanted my CoCo SDC always plugged in and want to use the rest as a "kiosk" to play my actual cart games :) It needs to be modded to work in a CoCo 3 (the one coming to me already is) and I can tell you that it is rare enough that if you are thinking about one to test it out it will run you almost the price of a CoCo 3 itself ;)

My First MPI was Not Modded for the CoCo 3.. My Second one was Modded..

 

I have been told there is no issues using the Modded MPI on the CoCo 1 and 2, so since both of mine are the 26-3024, I bought the PAL from Zippster to upgrade it..

 

 

See thread, "Coco 3 Flash Storage Available?" for ways to contact Zippster...

 

MarkO

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