CoolWriter 3.1 Word Processor for IIGS

January 31, 2019

I came across this nifty word processor in //Alive Magazine from 1996. Very flexible and really small footprint. I created a 2mg file as original was a shrinkitGS which some folks may have issues with.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/c6cbmvxd8vjx6nk/CoolWriter31.2mg?dl=0

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Treasure Dive for Apple II – Nibble Magazine Collection

January 22, 2019

Here is a Treasure Diver Game. Fun to collect treasures, and avoid the obstacles etc. It can be played from Joystick or Keyboard. I’ve been playing it on my Virtual ][ Emulator. Link to download is below:

http://www.nibblemagazine.com/Nibble89disks.zip

http://www.nibblemagazine.com/nibble_disks.htm

After booting you need to select Joystick or Keyboard.

If you select Keyboard then you’ll need to select “FIX” to assign the keys for up, down, left and right.

You’ll also then select Skill Level. These are reverse of what’s typical. Level 5 is the easy level (start here). Level 1 is so fast you can’t hit the keys fast enough.

Here I’m selecting Skill Level 5 under a flashing cursor.

Key selection for navigation.


Mega Audio Card for IIe or IIGS from A2Heaven

January 9, 2019

MEGA Audio is a new audio card for Apple // that holds inside several audio cards itself. It supports emulation of several different kinds of audio cards that were/are available for Apple // computers, all-in-one:

2 x Mockingboard-cards (no support for SSI-263 speech chips emulation)

1 x A.L.F.-card

4 x S.A.M.-cards (4 x DAC)

http://www.a2heaven.com/webshop/index.php?rt=product/product&product_id=159

Mega Audio

The latest item I purchased is the Mega Audio Card from A2Heaven. It supports MockingBoard, SAM and ALF audio card tech.

I installed it in my FastChip//e and after a few iterations it worked fine. I initially installed it in Slot 3 as this was the only open slot in the IIe. But it would not allow me to access the Mega Menu. The Mega Menu is where you assign sound tech cards to specific slots.

The Mega Menu is accessed through the “monitor” function from Basic prompt using the call -151. Then CFFF, the CX00 (x being the slot number) and then C800g to exit to the Mega Menu. This brings up the Menu.

After emailing back and forth with the designer, Plamen, it turns out slot 3 will not work. So, I moved it to slot 4, removing the mouse card temporarily and it worked. I also tested it in slot 1 and slot 2 and it worked fine.

Since I need my Mouse in slot 4 I removed my serial card from slot 1 and installed the Mega Audio there. My final configuration came out as Mega Audio in slot 1, FastChip//e in slot 2, slot 3 empty, Mouse card in slot 4, Liron Card in slot 5, DuoDisk card in slot 6 and SCSI card in slot 7. I ran SkyFox, which supports the MockingBoard and it sounds great.

One note: The Mockingboard Utilities Disk assumes your card us in Slot 4. Therefore you’ll get no sound when playing the Mockingboard Utilities disk with the Mega in any other slot.

The installation of the Mega Audio card in the IIGS was a real trial.

You can only get to the Mega Menu by running ProDOS 8 and exiting to Basic, then access the “monitor”. It will not work if you boot to GSOS 6.0.1 and then run basic. I booted to a disk running ProDOS 2.4.1 with BitsyBye and was able to access the Mega Audio Menu. But I really did not feel the Mockingboard emulation was necessary in a IIGS given it’s inherent sound chip capability. So, I just attach the external Apple speakers to the sound port on the back of the IIGS. It sounds terrific as usual.

X

The package contents.

Here is the cards from A2Heaven. The 8MB Ram Card, the Mega Audio Card and The FastChip//e.

Across the top is a Tempered Glass Monitor stand. I like it as it allows me to see the light show, and easily access the slots. It’s very heavy as it’s meant to support large LCD monitors/computers e.g. iMac. Here’s the link.

https://www.amazon.com/Computer-Monitor-Riser-Multi-Desktop/dp/B0721T22MP


MicroDrive Turbo Rebuild – Partitions and CiderPress with “Special” 32MB Drive Images

December 28, 2018

This post is about how CiderPress and MicroDrive Turbo treat some 32 MB hard drive images that are found on Alex Lee’s site for the IIGS. Some of the images are larger than others by a block. This is not an issue with CFFA3000 cards or Emulators. But with MicroDrive Turbo cards and CiderPress this led to an issue with loading them onto the partitions as recommended by the microdrive documentation. This post carries on from my post of 5 days ago.

http://www.whatisthe2gs.apple2.org.za

So I experimented by increasing the block size by one as you’ll see in the pictures below and the odd sized or other sized, if you want to call them that, images loaded just fine and work on the MicroDrive without issue so far.

This reports the files in KBytes but illustrates the different sizes.

The series of screens can also serve as a bit of a tutorial on using CiderPress to load images.

Image 1: The 3 Partitions that come standard. All are 65535 as recommended in the manual.

Image 2: Two of the three partitions appear on the desktop. The third does not appear since its image is not loaded, as yet.

Now I add a 4th Partition. A 65356 block partition.

Using the Volume Copier in CiderPress

You’ll see the 3rd and 4th Partitions listed. One at 65535 blocks. My experimental at 65536 blocks.

Loading the Productivity and Graphics image.

Now, loading the other size, block size, image. System Addons.

Here the images appear on the desktop.

Starting MicroDrive Setup from GSOS to add another partition, Load it, and use it.


FloppyEmu with New 16 MHz TransWarpGS v1.1 and CFFA3000

December 23, 2018

Just expanding on my TransWarpGS post from 4 days ago.

Having a little fun. I plugged my FloppyEMU into the IIGS that runs via the new TransWarpGS v1.1 and boots from CFFA3000. Icons on left are the FloppyEMU.


MicroDrive Turbo CF Card Rebuild for IIGS

December 22, 2018

I recently had to rebuild the CF card that was in my MicroDrive Turbo. Here are some of the pictures as I went through creating the partitions with the MicroDrive Setup Utility Backup Disk. You’ll see I added partitions in increments and tested along the way. Like 1 partition, 2 partitions, 4, 8. I did test boots after 2, 4 and 8. Eight was my final. [Note: it’s best to read the wiki at the ReactiveMicro site covering the MDT before and while running setup]

I love the icon that comes with the MicroDrive Turbo Setup Disk.

Below: I added partition 2 but also changed default boot drive to 2.

Just an FYI: I’m running CiderPress in Windows XP using Parallels on my iMac.

Although there is a version of CiderPress that runs within Wine on Macs it will not recognize the CF Card. Tried it.

Note below: make sure you uncheck the box “open read only” or you won’t be able to Load. My card was a 512MB CF. Below noted as 500MB.

Select your partition. Then click Load From File button. Here I replaced partitions VG1 and VG2 with Audio Utilities and Prod Visual. Then select the image.

Note: for some reason MDT will not load images with size 32,769. It will load 32,768.

Further down is a picture of the error message. I work around this by loading in an Emulator and copying individual folders to an image which is 32,768 or smaller.

Since it says you need a partition of 65536, which is one block larger than the MDT Setup Utility Manual says I thought I might try to actually set up an image of this size and see what happens. Soon…


CFFA3000 Drive on IIGS plus Large Volume GSOS Installation Kit

December 19, 2018

I just got around to installing my CFFA3000 Card in my IIGS Rom03 as I also just received my new TransWarpGS from ReactiveMicro (separate blog post). The focus of this post is the Large Volume Installation Kit. You really “Level Up” dramatically with this kit. It’s worth every penny.

The link to the CFFA site:

http://dreher.net/?s=projects/CFforAppleII&c=projects/CFforAppleII/main.php

The link to large volume installation kit which describes it’s contents and features in detail. Below the link is a snapshot of that page.

https://www.ebluejay.com/ads/item/5548729

This kit is worth every cent. With the included CF Card, the USB drive and the USB Cable you’re all set. No hunting around for things.

Once you increase the number of SmartPort Assignments (just a menu change) you’ll see the HFS Drives, and be able to assign the other images. Here are a few pictures of that effort. Most of the images are from Alex Lee’s IIGS site. But a couple are images I made in my Virtual II Emulator.

http://www.whatisthe2gs.apple2.org.za/

The Santa Trashcan icon is on the System.Addons image on Alex’s site.

Here is the OMNIDISK image I made in my Virtual II Emulator. You’ll see all the AppleWorks versions. I copied these over to one of the CF card “hard drives”.

Below are pictures from the Kits Setup and Installation Guides.