Falcon emulator - anybody willing to help?

A forum about the Hatari ST/STE/Falcon emulator - the current version is v2.2.0

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thothy
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Falcon emulator - anybody willing to help?

Postby thothy » Wed Nov 01, 2006 1:43 pm

Hi everybody!

As some of you might already have noticed: There is now a experimental support for TOS 4.0x in the current Hatari CVS repository. When you check out the current source code, set the ENABLE_FALCON variable in the src/Makefile to 1 and recompile, you get a Hatari that can already boot TOS 4.04 and run some
few Falcon program (e.g. the Demos "Autowaschen verboten", "Terrorize your soul" or the games "Double Bobble 2k" and "Sheer Agony"). However, most of the programs that works already a little bit run without sound and have timing problems and other glitches.

Some parts of the Falcon emulation code (e.g. the Videl emulation) have been taken from the Aranym project, so some might now wonder why I started adding Falcon support/code from Aranym to Hatari, when there is already Aranym (which is a really good program already): The reason is simple: Aranym is not a Falcon emulator but rather a "next generation Atari" or a "virtual
machine" designed for modern GEM programs mainly. AFAIK its goal was never to be a Falcon emulation that can run the Falcon demos and games - but these are now the goals that I want to achieve with Hatari. I am not very interested in GEM applications anymore, but rather want to see old Falcon games and demos running on my current computer. So the intention of this step I made with Hatari is not to create a competitor for Aranym, but to create an cycle-accurate emulator for the programs (esp. games and demos) that Aranym will never run. Hope I got that point clear.

However, my spare time is unfortunately quite limited and I personally don't have very much experience with the Falcon hardware programming. So I am currently searching for help.
Is somebody willing to help developing the Falcon emulation
code in Hatari? Developors who

1) know how to program in C

2) know the Falcon hardware a little bit

3) have motivation to work on a Falcon emulator.

are hereby invited to join the Hatari development! If you are interested, please write me an e-mail or drop a note on the Hatari development list (see http://sourceforge.net/projects/hatari/ for more information).

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Postby unseenmenace » Wed Nov 01, 2006 2:44 pm

Is it possible to compile Hatari for Windows? I think you would get a lot more support if it was possible. That aside I do have a Falcon and a little bit of experience of programming its innards so I would be willing to help.

EDIT: Great idea by the way :)
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Postby thothy » Wed Nov 01, 2006 4:05 pm

Yes, it is possible to compile and run Hatari on Windows. You need the MinGW C-compiler for this. Rename the Makefile-MinGW.cnf to Makefile.cnf before you start compilation. Everything is a little bit rough, and some parts (e.g. the GEMDOS HD emulation) do not work on Windows, so it might be a little bit hard to get Falcon programs running there (especially since the ACSI HD emulation also does not work in Falcon mode), but at least Hatari compiles now under Windows (it did not before version 0.90).

I agree, with proper Windows support there might be a much higher user base for Hatari. But Windows is not my favourite OS and until now there also was no need to really support it since there are other good ST/STE emulators for Windows. But now that there is basic Falcon emulation in Hatari, maybe some Windows developers would like to help now to fix the remaining issues in Hatari for Windows?

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Postby Marakatti » Wed Nov 01, 2006 5:04 pm

Wow, this really sound like a dream come true! There are talented coders out there, who knows Falcon inside out. Let's hope (well, beg...) they have time and motivation to enter the project.

And if there's a need for betatester, i would be glad to help as long as it runs on Mac OS X.
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Postby mikro » Wed Nov 01, 2006 5:21 pm

hi thothy,

well, it looks cool. Personally I can reach all three points very easy but my problem is: the time. for now i have so many projects in my pipeline that i simply can't open another one... they are mainly "native related" i.e. to help to survive current atari scene...

btw, i've tried to make such project (falcon emulator) as my final high school project but i didn't succeed. (i code risc assembler/simulator/debugger for some new risc cpu which isn't the worst experience, too).

so... sometime i'll take your gauntlet but in the present there are more important things...

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Postby [ProToS] » Thu Nov 02, 2006 1:18 am

perhaps you could try to contact the Reservoir Gods members, they have work f030
emulator project in the past with some source code aviable on sourceforge but
it's closed now
http://web.archive.org/web/200503221443 ... conpowder/

http://rg.atari.org
RG forum ;) http://www.atari-forum.com/viewforum.php?f=23
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Postby earx » Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:21 am

hi thothy,

i'd like to cooperate on this project. i hope you will be at paracon8? i think i have enough time since my falcon demo project is in the freezer since a very long time.. ;) a good falcon emulator would be great esp since the real thing is getting more rare by the minute.

cheers,

pieter (earx)

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Postby CiH » Thu Nov 02, 2006 11:15 pm

Hmm, we have good news/bad news here...

i think i have enough time since my falcon demo project is in the freezer since a very long time..


Doh!! Those are only good words coming from TBC! ;-)

i'd like to cooperate on this project.


Hooray! :-)
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Postby bj » Fri Nov 03, 2006 1:46 am

Hi Thothy

Sounds like great news to me. Keep up the good work. I'm restricted to windows for emulation so guess I'll have to wait until a windows version is available. Unfortunately my programming skills are zero. But can help in the cheering from the sidelines department :)

Go for it Thothy :!: Falcon emulation here we come :D
regards
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Postby punkrulesok » Fri Nov 03, 2006 9:13 pm

I've spread the word on yakyak.org mate :)

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Postby RetroGamerUK » Sat Nov 04, 2006 9:23 am

You also have my full moral support for this project thothy, just please spare a thought for us poor, under-privileged Windows users who lack the non-conformity of mac and linux users...

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Postby lotek_style » Sat Nov 04, 2006 10:19 am

Wohoo Thoty rocks the show :D ... Great to hear that finally somebody seems to be motivated enough to work on this project... but as the others mentioned already a windows port will be absolutely essential.
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Postby daeghnao » Sun Nov 05, 2006 11:31 am

Been following the discussion while I've been frantically organising our annual Linux install event here in York. Now that that's mostly out of the way, I will hopefully have a little more time and could get involved with this project. I can offer:

C programming skills
Actual Falcon to test on
Some minor experience with cross-compiling to Windows using mingw
A lot of experience explaining things to people

Thothy, I'll get in touch via email with some more details and see how much help I can be.

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Postby thothy » Mon Nov 06, 2006 8:47 pm

Hi everybody! Thanks for the kind words here and e-mails that you've wrote. I just didn't yet had the time to reply to all the mails, since real life takes too much time at the moment ... :-(

A note to the Windows users: As I've mentioned it, basic support for Windows is already there in the source code. It just needs some work to get some parts working that do not run very well yet (e.g. GEMDOS HD emulation). But since I hardly use Windows at all, I'll leave this part to somebody who really uses Windows - I am pretty sure one of the Windows users around could help here.

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Postby Lautreamont » Mon Nov 06, 2006 10:03 pm

thothy wrote:Yes, it is possible to compile and run Hatari on Windows. You need the MinGW C-compiler for this.


I tried once to install a mingw development environment on a windows machine. I took me a full day to get a system with graphics and sound libs. Then I realised that among the few people who are willing to compile their programs themselves, most of them won't spend a day to install an unix development environment on their computer. People on Windows expect to compile programs with the Microsoft MSVC compiler instead, which didn't seem to comply to any international C standard the only time I used it.

Hatari sources would probably have to be tweaked to make them compile with msvc and much time would probably be wasted. It's no match for Steem or Saint on Windows, and a windows port should be the last thing to do without the help of a windows programmer. However, if a Windows port is to be done, maybe it could help to replace the autotools by more multi-platforms programs like cons (Perl) or scons(Python).
Last edited by Lautreamont on Mon Nov 06, 2006 10:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby christos » Mon Nov 06, 2006 10:07 pm

I don't have a linux installation but for a falcon emulator I will so I don't really see a problem....
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Postby punkrulesok » Wed Nov 08, 2006 7:21 pm

Any chance of some screenshots of the Falcon desktop running?

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Postby thothy » Sat Nov 11, 2006 6:55 pm

I've now uploaded some screenshots here:
http://hatari.sourceforge.net/scrshots5.html

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Postby unseenmenace » Sat Nov 11, 2006 7:07 pm

OOOHHH!!!! Cool bananas :)
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Postby CiH » Sat Nov 11, 2006 9:27 pm

Thothy,

Can you be biologically modified to have my babies?! :lol:

Seriously, looking forward very much to the next Hatari version.
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Postby Marakatti » Sun Nov 12, 2006 9:24 am

Excellent work, this is a Xmas present no 1 in my wishlist :)
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Postby thothy » Sun Nov 12, 2006 11:28 am

Thanks for the flowers! But to prevent disappointment, I have to stress that the Falcon emulation code is really in a very early stage of development. I don't think that there will be a stable, public version within the next months... sorry!

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Postby punkrulesok » Sun Nov 12, 2006 5:21 pm

hey, getting the desktop and some apps working is better than has been done before :). I'm just glad someone is interested in getting the falcon emulated :).

looking forward to a windows port sometime in the future :)

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Postby Cohen » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:18 pm

Wow, that sounds like an amazing project!

I'm certainly not the person suited to write in this thread as I'm (at best) only loosely following the Atari Scene and can't offer any real help. (Never had a Falcon, always wanted one.) What I can provide is this link I stumbled upon accidentally. Apparently someone already has compiled Hatari for Windows. Perhaps it would be beneficial to contact the author?

As you can see, I'm happily running SNDH-Player in 256 colours from a GEMDOS drive under Windows:

Image

And that's the "Autowaschen Verboten"-Demo thothy already mentioned - running in fullscreen mode:

Image

(Also executed without any problems from a simple harddrive folder. Very impressive! :thumbs:)

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Postby keili » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:23 pm

Cohen, can you show us your desktop without a running program :wink: ?
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