TOS: Now and When

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clh333
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TOS: Now and When

Postby clh333 » Thu Nov 02, 2017 7:40 pm

Very new to Atari workings so please pardon this most basic question:

1040 STf has six TOS ROM, numbered C062160-001 to C062165-001 (28 pins). I think these are 1.0 ROMs. Everything I have read says to replace them: Obviously the easiest solution is to burn another set (6x27C256?) with a higher version of TOS. Here is where my limited knowledge is causing problems: TOS 1.04 ("rainbow") is recommended as a minimum, but are higher versions also compatible? In a six-chip configuration?

Apparently with some modifications you can run two ROM and even two ROM with 32 pins. I have seen this configuration running 2.06 TOS but not specifically on this machine. What are the options?

On a related note: I have been looking for a hardware reference for the ST; I already have the Abacus / Becker Atari ST Internals. Is there another one that anyone could recommend?

Thanks for your replies.

-CH-

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby siriushardware » Thu Nov 02, 2017 9:01 pm

To keep the machine looking neat I would suggest you keep to a six-chip set and just replace the existing 6-ROM TOS1.0 with TOS 1.04 in 6 * 27C256, as you suggest. My original STFM is running with exactly that upgrade. If you plan on using any sort of HDD solution or substitute that's the best reason right there to update from TOS 1.0- the HDD access speed increase when going from 1.0 to 1.04 is really noticeable. Also, I think 1.04 can write and read PC formatted discs (720K), whereas TOS 1.0 used a less compatible Atari-only format.

On the other hand, one reason to keep TOS 1.0 is for maximum compatibility with everything ever written for the ST, since this version of TOS was known to all s/w developers at every stage of the ST's history and there was no excuse for them not to check that it worked on 1.0, whereas software written when TOS 1.0 was still current was sometimes broken by later TOSes, due to future changes unforseen by the developers.

If you want to have a choice between two TOSes then use 6 * 27C512s instead, program TOS 1.0 into the lower halves of the 512s, and program TOS1.04 into the upper halves of the 512s. When inserting the 512s into the sockets, bend pin 1 on each chip flat out sideways so that it does not go into the socket pin 1 - then - run a wire between the pin 1s of all six 512s. Wire a switch to take these interconnected pin 1s either to 0V or pulled up to +5V.

You then have both TOS 1.0 and TOS1.4 available, although of course you should only switch from one to the other when the machine is powered down.

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby arf » Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:32 pm

clh333 wrote:Very new to Atari workings so please pardon this most basic question:
for a hardware reference for the ST; I already have the Abacus / Becker Atari ST Internals. Is there another one that anyone could recommend?


Atari ST/TT Profibuch (in German) and Atari Compendium (English) and Scheibenkleister (focussed on mass storage, German)

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby ijor » Fri Nov 03, 2017 12:59 am

clh333 wrote:On a related note: I have been looking for a hardware reference for the ST; I already have the Abacus / Becker Atari ST Internals. Is there another one that anyone could recommend?


The official Atari documentation is not bad at all. Get them here: http://dev-docs.atariforge.org

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby clh333 » Fri Nov 03, 2017 10:49 am

Delighted to have your responses; thank you very much for your suggestions.

I'll opt for TOS 1.04 for now and see what I can do with it. Unfortunately my command of the German language is limited; I realize there is much that I am missing as a result.

-CH-

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby Eero Tamminen » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:13 pm

Any program that works only with TOS v1.00, will work only from floppies, which makes them quite annoying, when one has hard disk attached to ST.

I know exactly one program (ST Quixx game) which requires TOS v1.00, which is not exactly a pressing reason to use TOS v1.00. Does somebody know any other programs that requires TOS v1.00, or is there already a list of them? (Ones which haven't been yet fixed to work with multiple TOS versions and otherwise improved)

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby ijor » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:39 pm

There are many programs that don't run on TOS 1.04 in their original form. Usually floppies with copy protection. Yes, many of them, perhaps most of them, have been already "fixed" so that they can be loaded from a hard disk and so that they would work with any TOS. It is up to every one to decide then, if it matters or not to use an earlier TOS. But it always have to be warned about the potential incompatibility.

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby siriushardware » Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:35 am

Eero Tamminen wrote:Does somebody know any other programs that requires TOS v1.00, or is there already a list of them?


My original disc copy of 'Arkanoid' which came with my STFM (with TOS1.0) does not run on later TOSes because it reads the mouse X position directly from the system memory location where TOS keeps it. Unfortunately in later TOSes this system variable was moved to another location so any games which originally read the mouse position this way were broken in later TOSes.

I'm sure 'Arkanoid' was probably fixed for all TOSes in a later release, but there will be many items of software which were released when TOS 1.0 was the current TOS and never subsequently updated. Hence the advice to retain TOS 1.0 if maximum compatibility with all software is the paramount requirement. I did not do this myself: I updated to TOS1.4 and patched a copy of the Arkanoid disc so that it read from the correct memory location in TOS1.4.

Of course, this meant that it no longer worked in TOS 1.0, so this was not a very 'good' fix.

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby Eero Tamminen » Mon Nov 06, 2017 11:29 pm

ijor wrote:There are many programs that don't run on TOS 1.04 in their original form.


Has anybody documented / listed them anywhere?

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby ijor » Sat Nov 11, 2017 1:51 am

Eero Tamminen wrote:Has anybody documented / listed them anywhere?


Not that I know. But they are many.

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Re: TOS: Now and When

Postby AtariZoll » Sat Nov 11, 2017 6:38 am

Eero Tamminen wrote:Any program that works only with TOS v1.00, will work only from floppies, which makes them quite annoying, when one has hard disk attached to ST.
I know exactly one program (ST Quixx game) which requires TOS v1.00, which is not exactly a pressing reason to use TOS v1.00. Does somebody know any other programs that requires TOS v1.00, or is there already a list of them? (Ones which haven't been yet fixed to work with multiple TOS versions and otherwise improved)

Those 2 things must not go together. There is plenty of games working (properly) only with TOS 1.00 - what means that it may start (even from hard drive), but then some things work not - usually controls. I remember 1 APP what even works only with German TOS 1.00 - GFA Artist - at least German release.

List would be good. Yes, I fixed many, and you can see here notes if there is only TOS 1.00 compat. : http://atari.8bitchip.info/ASTGA/astgam.php
Like: http://atari.8bitchip.info/ASTGA/T/tracker.php

And funny recent finding: there are even silly ways of determining TOS version - in game Swiftar they assume that it is TOS 1.00 if 512KB RAM, otherwise assuming it is TOS 1.02 and then use concrete addresses in low RAM (specific for any TOS v.) to read joystick. Btw. that's the flaw of STOS too, only that it has almost proper TOS v. detection and tables for more TOS versions.
As may see, tests must be done very detailed - in case of Swiftar you may think that it is only TOS 1.00 if test with only 512KB RAM.

Considering list: probably list only about TOS 1.00 is not good idea. Should make list with all TOS v. limited SW - there is plenty what works only with 1.00-1.02 or - 1.04 , for instance.
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