FASTChip //e for Apple IIe – Accelerator Card

November 20, 2017

Just installed my FASTChip //e In italics are the notes from the website.

November 22, 2017

I’ve been running a tests of PublishIt v4 startup time on the Apple //e with the FastChip//e.

*With the FastChip//e set at 10 MHz and running PublishIt from the SCSI drive it took 8 seconds to load.

*With the FastChip//e running at 1.0 MHz running from the SCSI drive it took 25 seconds.

*With the FastChip//e running at 1.0 MHz and PublishIt v4 running from a UniDisk 3.5 disk connected the Liron Controller Card in the //e it took 53 seconds to load. [ Note: The Apple //e has a RamWorks8M card made from a2Heaven. This card uses current day technology so it must provide some additional advantage when loading the fonts, et al into memory upon startup. The only way to see the difference would be for me to uninstall the RamWorks8M and reinstall the 1986 RamWorks 1M card by Applied Engineering. At the end of this posts are links to YouTube videos of the above.

The FASTChip //e accelerates the Apple //e™ by replacing the on-board microprocessor with a much faster one. Because the memory on the Apple //e™ can only run at a 1 MHz speed maximum, faster memory (SRAM) must be provided to increase performance and allow the 65C02/65C816 CPU to run at full speed. To do this, the FASTChip //e contains 512KB/1024KB of fast SRAM memory. The clever design allows the acceleration of programs running in both main and auxiliary memory. The additional FASTChip //e memory can emulate both 192/448 KB fast RamWorks  compatible RAM and 256/512 KB fast RamFactor (slinky) compatible RAM.

FASTChip //e features

  • Easy to install card, installable in slot 1-7 of the Apple //e™, or Enhanced //e.
  • Does not mechanically interfere with the 80 column card in slot 3.
  • 65C02/65C816 microprocessor running at a clock rate of more than 16 MHz .
  • External Hardware Control Panel with controls and LED display.
  • CPU frequency can be changed real-time via rotary knob (0.2Mhz to 16.6Mhz).
  • Stop/Pause and Status buttons for easy control.
  • 4 digits x 7 segment LED display.
  • Built in 192/448 KB fast RamWorks compatible RAM.
  • Built in 256/512 KB fast RamFactor (Slinky) compatible RAM.
  • Low power design for cool operation.
  • Acceleration of programs running in both main and auxiliary memory.
  • Compatible with most interface and expansion cards for the Apple II/IIe.
  • Transparent operation with all Apple II software.
  • An easily accessed built-in software control panel lets you control processor speed, memory, joystick, speaker sound quality and many other options.

My actual //e Setup with FastChip//e, RamWorks8M card and SDFloppy II installed.

FastChip//e videos of PublishIT version 4 at 10 Mhz. A program essentially unusable on a IIe at 1 MHz.

[Note: I’m running PublishIt from a SCSI drive, not a floppy, unidisk 3.5, or SDFloppy, although programs ran fine from all three devices. But obviously SCSI is the fastest ] : unless you have a CFFA or MicroDrive Turbo.


VisiCalc v1.37 and v2.08 for Apple ll

November 10, 2017

I’ve been experimenting with VisiCalc on the Apple IIe and Franklin Ace500. I also ran it (v2.08) on the IIGS, the TransWarpGS, from the floppy. VisiCalc was the first really super Spreadsheet program for desktop platforms. It came out in 1979 developed by Dan Bricklin. It has a very interesting command structure as every row/column action or save/load action begins with a ” / “. The trickiest thing was learning how to control the movement up/down and right/left until I found the Reference Guide. You need to tap the space bar each time you want to switch between x and y axis. Also, you still use the ß à arrows whether going sideways or up down. Here is a link to the program and reference card.

Below: version 2.08 running on Virtual ][ Emulator. You can see the VC-208 in entry line.

This is a template I picked up with a few other Apple IIe templates. 

AceCalc v2.0 by Franklin on Apple lle

November 7, 2017

I’m playing with AceCalc by Franklin from 1983. Operates in a similar fashion to VisiCalc. Here’s a link to the download and manuals.

I’ll post some additional pictures later today.

These are screenshots using Virtuall ][ emulating Apple //e.    Notice the mouse text characters.   If you know how to configure the Virtual //e to not display these let me know.

GraphicWriter III for Apple IIGS with Graphics Inserted

October 9, 2017

Updated April 27, 2018

Here is a printout of the current page 1 done on my ImageWriter II. Note: The blur outs are intentional.

Updated March 15, 2018 Pi-Day

One Pi is font, the other image cut and paste from other document.

Updated March 12, 2018

More screen shots. Color and b&w pictures. [ Picture quality lacking as I got my iPhone to close to the LCD TV. I’m using the Scart Converter with special RGB Adapter cable. See other blog entry for details. ]

This picture is more representative.

Graphics I clipped from other programs using SHR screen capture NDA and then using SuperConvert4 or Platinum Paint 2 to clip.

October 15, 2017
UPDATE.  I was running GW3 v1.1 in the previous examples.   Below are the pictures of GW3 v2.0, which I added to the
GSHarddrive image today.    GW3v2 is in a separate folder on the GSHarddrive. I updated the previous word processing file, which is illustrated.

GW3 V2.0Updated file.Older v1.1 The PDF.

Main Text:

This is a nice program for the IIGS. You can download this program from the link below. The download includes a number of files and versions of the program including some  picture disks. You can also grab the manual which is very extensive. The program disks are 2mg files. The manual says you can load the program to the hard drive which I did and it works perfectly fine. I use it under a subdirectory GW3 on my main 32 MB hard drive. The program seems to come with the graphical and pseudo-graphical program features of this era. You have the font and formatting capabilities with multiple columns for text. and the ability to draw or have some type of image on the screen. A couple key things that I did, which I liked, was the ability to import AppleWorks files and also Bank Street Writer files. As you can see in the examples below I did both. [ I wonder if I ran the Spell Check in GW3. I’ll need to verify. ]

This one picture of v2.1 was taken from the Internet.

Import file options screen.
Below is a picture of the screen where I imported the AppleWorks file. This is actually the National AppleWorks User Group file that was on one of the disks I had. The funny thing that occurred is I enhanced the title of the page as you can see with the shadows around the letters but when you try to print that to a PDF out of the Sweet16 IIGS Emulator the shadow font does not translate and you get nothing but a big black space at the top of the very first page. I confirmed this by changing the font back to something more natural and it output the PDF just fine.
Here is a example of importing the Bank Street Writer Plus file from my disk. I try to keep mini-journals in all the different word processors I have, and their versions. This Bank Street Writer Plus file shows the embedded text formatting controls.

Spell Check

Here’s an example of importing one of the picture images that came on the disks with the program. As you can see I set the text to wrap around the image completely.
Lastly, here is a group shot of all four pages that printed including the header where I changed the font to not be shadow font, included the logo, the AppleWorks file, and the Bank Street Writer file.

RamWorks8M from for Apple IIe

August 13, 2017

I bought this 8 MB RamWorks8M card from to max out the memory in my IIe. My IIe was using both a RamWorks 1 and an Apple 1 MB cards taking up the Aux Slot and another Slot. With the RamWorks8M card I could eliminate the Apple 1MB card and open a slot, as well as reducing electrical draw. The following pictures include shots from both my actual IIe and the Virtual II Emulator. The Emulator provides better clarity of image since I need to reduce resolution so much with real pictures to save space.

The card is little bigger than a credit card. Note the pointing finger and keyboard image on the card to illustrate direction of Install.

The RamWorks8M installed.

RamBoard Test disk.
8 MB testing. 87th pass on actual IIe.

Super Desktop Expander v5.3.1 with Partition and ProDrive programs. The ProDrive Doc is good. Must read.

SDE5.3.1 Main Menu
ProDrive Menu
Partitioning Program. I did not use the AppleWorks option. I’ll try that later.
Selection of partition size
2 MB Selected for System leaving  6 MB for Ram Disk.
Updating the ProDrive.bin so it starts up this way.

Cataloging Ram
Available Drives
Running PublishIT4 on 3.5 UniDisk via my Liron Card in the IIe.
Updated my Journal of Activity and saving to Ram Drive. You can see the Ram Drive has almost 6 meg of space available 5947k.

Preview in Publish.It4 program.

//Write v1.01 Graphical Word Processor for Apple IIe

July 30, 2017

Here is the link (2 dsk images) and a bunch of pictures. Pretty straight forward.

Correction to the “Import File” note in the examples below. I was able to import AppleWorks files. It gives you an error message but you ignore it and everything seems to import fine with the exception of style/format features. Examples added at the bottom of this article..

Here’s the screen appearance using the Script font.

Boot up.

Main screen.

Open file screen on Drive 1.

Open file on Drive 2 after I created the file.
Screen appearance in regular type font.
Saving file a separate ProDOS formatted disk.

Selecting printer configuration. Mine is actually ImageWriter II and Apple Serial Card.

The printouts to PDF in Emulator.

Importing AppleWorks files.

Importing some of the standard AppleWorks data disk files.

Saving the imported file to my //Write DATA disk in Drive 2.

In the Drop down menu below you see //Spell but I don’t know if they ever created the Spell Checker. I’m searching but I haven’t found it yet.

Bank Street Writer Plus – Printer Option Examples – Apple IIe

July 30, 2017

This is an extension of my Bank Street Writer Plus post of February 22, 2017. It focuses on experimenting with the printer setup controls and the respective outputs. These were done on my Virtual II Emulator.

This printout is an example of the UltraCondensed printer setting giving you 17 characters per inch (CPI). You’ll also see the font type changes in the first paragraph. The 2nd image illustrates the controls on the screen for this document. Also I’ve changed the lines per inch from 6 LPI to 8 LPI. [ please forgive the typos…I should have spell checked —fixed on last picture on this page.]

Here is the Setup menu accessed by hitting the escape key on bootup.

Here are the printer commands. You can find these in the ImageWriter II manual. The program comes with the ImageWriter command set included but only A-F Setup. I Setup G-P. Later versions of AppleWorks and other word processors had these included and selectable.

Option-P brings up the menu when in the program. 

Here’s an example of the default 65 CPI and how the printing appears as you change items. Note: the paragraph start with “Notes from July 13” is actually a cut & paste from AppleWorks. This includes extra carriage returns which gives you the jagged look until you remove them.

I noticed when I changed to ultracondensed giving 17 CPI and also with 8 LPI it would only use 2/3 of the page since default was 66 lines. See below: 

You can see the end of page line above. I switched the top and bottom settings along with the lines per page to make it better.