Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

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Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Sun May 25, 2008 12:18 pm

Hi!

I am building an Atari ST ROM cartridge for the 520ST/1040ST/MEGA ST models.

Atari offered a diagnostic cartridge for systemcheck and repairing STs.

I want to build such a cartridge myself and need some information about it:
:?: Where to get a manual
:?: Where to get the rom files (2x 32kB) for it


Info.pdf


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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby ppera » Sun May 25, 2008 2:22 pm

I googled little. Looked for some cartridge contents with utilities too. Nothing... Probably Best and other salers hold back publishing of such things, since they still sale cartridges.

In any case, if someone has some nice ST(E) cartridge content (image of ROM(s) ) is welcome to post it here :-)
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Sun May 25, 2008 2:38 pm

Hi!

Thank you.

I got it working :cheers:

The diagnostic module is very simple to use, so no manual needed :D
The files I already have are OK.

The problem was a hardware design error :oops:
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby techie_alison » Sun May 25, 2008 3:26 pm

I too would be very interesting in the ROM images for this. :)
If I don't answer or appear to have forgotton then email again, I'm scatty! :)

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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby karlm » Mon May 26, 2008 12:39 am

If someone were to make up some I am sure some people would be interested ... :)
It would be neat if you could use say a pair of 64k or even 128k roms and have a cart that was switchable between ST / STE / Mega / TT etc. Was there a Falcon diagnostic cart or am I dreaming there?
(yes I know the cartridge port is limited to a certain address range but you can set it up like the switchable TOS ...)

so many ideas so little time and expertise :)

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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby Rat boy » Mon May 26, 2008 3:15 am

From first views, seems like a version that we used back in the day..so excellent to get one working! Any screen shots to confirm? Pretty basic, and 'down to earth' testing, but it does what it says on the tin! bypasses many system operations on a 'dead' system...so very useful.
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby karlm » Mon May 26, 2008 4:34 am

Just had a thought ... that should be the exact same thing that a Spectre 128 was, minus the Apple ROMs of course. So you could use it for that too, if you had the ROMs. It was better done a little later on when the MCA hacked a copy of SpectreGCR/3.0 and had the ROMs load from disk ... bypassing the cartridge ...
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Mon May 26, 2008 4:48 am

Rat boy wrote:From first views, seems like a version that we used back in the day..so excellent to get one working! Any screen shots to confirm? Pretty basic, and 'down to earth' testing, but it does what it says on the tin! bypasses many system operations on a 'dead' system...so very useful.



Hi!

This a common project of Ppera and me (Popsel).
There will be 128KB cartridge, too.
One 128kB PCB is already made but not soldered yet.
When it is finished we will offer the Eagle files for free.
You may make it at home or send it to a PCB service :)
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Mon May 26, 2008 4:52 am

karlm wrote:If someone were to make up some I am sure some people would be interested ... :)
It would be neat if you could use say a pair of 64k or even 128k roms and have a cart that was switchable between ST / STE / Mega / TT etc. Was there a Falcon diagnostic cart or am I dreaming there?
(yes I know the cartridge port is limited to a certain address range but you can set it up like the switchable TOS ...)

so many ideas so little time and expertise :)

karlm.


The card fits in the Mega STE and Falcon too, but needs other ROMs to test the hardware.
Atari made a diagnostic ROM for the Falcon, too.
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby Techman » Mon May 26, 2008 4:55 am

i hvae those roms in my collection...
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Mon May 26, 2008 4:57 am

Hi!

To test the SERIAL and PRINTER ports we need TEST-PLUGs.

IF somebody has the schematics for that ATARI-TEST-PLUGs please send it
to me or post it here.

For testing the midi port we need only a standard midi cable :D
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby Rat boy » Mon May 26, 2008 5:08 am

AFAIK, the serial/parallel loopback tests are a simple err..loopback test, and can be bypassed anyways...

But looking at the pinouts for those posts, pretty easy to figure out the wiring..

Seriously - unless you have an internal issue with these ports, then the tests are 99.9% useless...OK it fails..no biggie.

Show me someone that had a serious internal parallel issue on their Atari. Never happened.

Otherwise the mem and processor test are VERY useful. Remember I used this cart DAILY. Repairing the computers that was sent to ME to FIX. Never had a parallel/serial problem though..
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby karlm » Mon May 26, 2008 5:25 am

Techman wrote:i hvae those roms in my collection...

Please Please Please Techman! Copies to Popsel so he can test!
cheers
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Mon May 26, 2008 6:46 am

Rat boy wrote:AFAIK, the serial/parallel loopback tests are a simple err..loopback test, and can be bypassed anyways...

But looking at the pinouts for those posts, pretty easy to figure out the wiring..

Seriously - unless you have an internal issue with these ports, then the tests are 99.9% useless...OK it fails..no biggie.

Show me someone that had a serious internal parallel issue on their Atari. Never happened.

Otherwise the mem and processor test are VERY useful. Remember I used this cart DAILY. Repairing the computers that was sent to ME to FIX. Never had a parallel/serial problem though..


Hi!
I had 2x to repair damaged parallel ports.
You may know, the parallel port is driven by the soundchip YM2149 which has weak driving capabilities.
I am simple collecting useful information to include in the package we will provide when the project is ready.
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby Mug UK » Mon May 26, 2008 7:18 am

The Wiki awaits when you have more news to tell us :)
Having sold 99.9% of my 1300+ collection of originals, I'm taking a bit of a back seat on the forum. I'll still do the front-of-house admin tasks as and when they're required but, for now, I'm enjoying my Xbox 360 time too much :)

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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby gogo » Mon May 26, 2008 8:39 am

Hello,

For my first post, I can redirect you to a french page about the Atati test kit.
You'll find ROMs for almost all Ataris but the Falcon.

http://www.hobby-electronique.com/Projets/ATARI/TestKit/tabid/88/Default.aspx
2 Atari 800XL
2 Amiga 1200
1 Atari TT030 (my precious)
1 Atari 1040STF (my first Atari 16/32)
1 Mega STE
......
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby ppera » Mon May 26, 2008 9:34 am

muguk wrote:The Wiki awaits when you have more news to tell us :)


I prepare some technical info about how making SW for ST cartridge port. It is barely covered on WEB, as I see. Source is mostly Atari Profibuch. WIll put it into guides section. Maybe later to WIKI, but will not complain if someone other take to do it.
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby techie_alison » Mon May 26, 2008 11:44 pm

Heyo :-)

I have this running right now. The STFM one. It's quite intuative. Like, on my STFM it has a 72-pin SIMM in it and I can switch from 1MB to 4MB with a switch on the back. Usually it crashes the machine, but this actually knows and throws up actual bus errors.

Another thing is that it's continually reading the EPROMs. I'm doing this with an emulator/programmer, and usually when you stop emulating, the computer doesn't notice.. This does. It also blocks the colour/mono interrupt too.

Aly
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby techie_alison » Mon May 26, 2008 11:47 pm

gogo wrote:Hello,

For my first post, I can redirect you to a french page about the Atati test kit.
You'll find ROMs for almost all Ataris but the Falcon.

http://www.hobby-electronique.com/Projets/ATARI/TestKit/tabid/88/Default.aspx


Hello gogo :-)

Welcome to the forum. (and thanks for the link).

If there's any questions you have about anything, or if you're about to colour dye (that doesn't work!) your ST, then please do post. It's quite tame here. No one will start criticising or any of that.

Friendly regards,

Alison :-)
If I don't answer or appear to have forgotton then email again, I'm scatty! :)

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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Tue May 27, 2008 5:58 am

gogo wrote:Hello,

For my first post, I can redirect you to a french page about the Atati test kit.
You'll find ROMs for almost all Ataris but the Falcon.

http://www.hobby-electronique.com/Projets/ATARI/TestKit/tabid/88/Default.aspx


Hi gogo!

Thanks for this link.

They have another interesting project, too (at least for electronicans):
http://www.hobby-electronique.com/Trucs ... fault.aspx
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Tue May 27, 2008 6:03 am

Hi!

The 128KB cartridge is finished and proved to work. :cheers:

Ppera will put all information you need for building it :D

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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby Chandler » Tue May 27, 2008 9:43 am

regarding the original full kit that was sold (ie: the cartridge/leads and DMA test board)

does anyone know what was so special about the midi cable? ie: was it just a standard midi cable only shorter?

PS: i have one of those FALCON test cartridges too :wink:

dunno if it works though as i've never used it, if you need any info from it i don't mind helping as someone has already opened it in the past
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby ppera » Tue May 27, 2008 10:34 am

Chandler wrote:...
PS: i have one of those FALCON test cartridges too :wink:
dunno if it works though as i've never used it, if you need any info from it i don't mind helping as someone has already opened it in the past


You can try to read it's ROM content into file with programm CART_IMG.PRG (it is in STEEM ). May do it with some ST very likely, not only Falcon...
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby techie_alison » Wed May 28, 2008 9:54 am

Here's one to think about... A 1Mbit EPROM in place of those two 512Kbits. As Ppera has mentioned to me personally, this has to be a 16-bit chip, ie. 64K x 16. NOT, 128K x 8.

http://www.gryzor.info/Atari/romboard.html

The Atari ST Rom Module



Due to some recent interest in the Steem mailing list, I decided to post whatever info I have on the Atari ROM module I own. In the mailing list it was noted that the german magazine c't once had such a module, but I'm not sure whether this is the one or not. I did, however, win it in an auction on ebay.de, so it just might be it. If Matthias Arndt can scan the schematics from the ancient magazine we could confirm it...

The board plugs into the side cartridge slot of the Atari ST. It is not pass-through, i.e. it is the last device you can plug in the cartridge slot chain. The design is very, very simple, as you can see. It holds an EPROM labeled "ROMOS4 v.8.0" but I'm not sure about its contents, as I can't find my STe right now (gee, I really wonder where it went).

There's a small red switch on the side which can be used to turn the board off without removing it from the cartridge slot.

The maximum memory size it can hold is, AFAIK, 128kB, since there's only 128k od address space in the ST memory map. I do guess there's the possibility of bank switching, but you'd need some bank switching software.

The EPROM is, of course, read-only, so the whole thing can only be used to quickly access frequently-used, small programs. I'm not sure if you can autorun its contents, in which case you could run accessories of it, but anyhow. The module does have a booting sector, however, so maybe something could be done with it.

The only way to write onto the EPROM is first erase it (remove the small silver sticker at the middle; expose the chip to UV light for approximately 10 minutes) and then use an EPROM burner.

There's a driver that comes with the module, ROMDSK. However you can make it auto-loadable by injecting it into the first 512 bytes of the file that is to be burned onto the EPROM.

The module's contents, once loaded, are mapperd into the $00FA0000-$00FBFFFF (decimal 16384000 - 16515071) Atari memory area.

That's about it, if you need any more info, lemme know...
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Re: Need information about Atari ST diagnostic cartridge

Postby popsel » Wed May 28, 2008 1:00 pm

Hi !

I have seen this and was looking for the needed 16bit EPROMS.
They are hard to find - so we decided to make the cartrige from 2x 8bit EPROMS instead.
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