Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

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George712
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Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

Hello,

my ATARi STE has the curious behaviour after reading and displaying intakt floppies with cryptic extensions. I added a screenshot.
The behaviour is not random and repeatable. The STE doesn't bot from floppy (goes into a loop), but it can read the content after booting without disk. When opening a Txt-file, the content is partially read correct partially you have also this cryptic mess.

I tried following so far:
* Swapped the floppy drive from an intakt machine
* changed the CPU with an 68HC0000
* changed the Ribbon-cable
* took power for the drive from an PC-PSU

I would be very gratefull for any kind of ideas.
104312315_10163754159180176_5660906143674999365_o.jpg
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by ThorstenOtto »

That looks really strange. I can't imagine any hardware failure that would display the name correct, but only corrupts the file extension. I guess its your floppy disk that was previously damaged. Did you try another one?

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

Yes. I tried another with same effect.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by mlynn1974 »

Can you run programs from GEM? If you can try to run Fast Copy 3 and use its directory listing to see if it also shows corrupt filename extensions.
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George712
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

I cannot run programms from disk. The only programms i can run are the applications build in the TOS.
Haven't figured out how to run programs without a working floppy.
Any ideas appreciated.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by stormy »

George712 wrote:
Sat Jun 27, 2020 8:12 pm
I cannot run programms from disk. The only programms i can run are the applications build in the TOS.
Haven't figured out how to run programs excet from floppy.
Any ideas appreciated.
Yes I have had this problem before, you need to install some pull up resistors.
this: https://www.exxoshost.co.uk/forum/viewt ... =17&t=1417
and possibly this too, if the first doesn't work: https://www.exxoshost.co.uk/forum/viewt ... 235#p27504
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by mlynn1974 »

Which version of TOS and which DMA chip does this machine have? Can you connect a Drive B: and see if that works normally?
If it does could you dump your version of TOS to disk, and file compare it with a known working good version of TOS for your language.

I'm not a fan of these mods. Although there might be a chance it helps fix the problem hundreds of thousands of STEs were produced and worked well without them.
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Hardware: Cumana CSA 354, Ultimate Ripper, Blitz Turbo, Synchro Express II (US and UK Versions).

George712
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

How do i connect a b: drive? You mean external? Or do iset some jumpers?
I dont know the version of tos and the dma chip. But i could post some pictures.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by mlynn1974 »

Yes if you have one or if you can borrow one connect an external drive with the external disk drive connector on the back of the STE.
Boot the machine with a formatted floppy disk in drive A: and another disk in drive B: and see if you can see the filename extensions on DRIVE B:

The DMA chip will either be be C025913-38 or C398739-001.
I think C025913-38 was only ever fitted to TOS 1.06 machines.
Still got, still working: Atari 4Mb STe, 520STFM, 2.5Mb STF.
Hardware: Cumana CSA 354, Ultimate Ripper, Blitz Turbo, Synchro Express II (US and UK Versions).

George712
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

I have dma c0259-13-38
And tos chips c0301180-001a and c301179-001a which seems to be 1.62 Tos German

Could this be the reason?

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by mlynn1974 »

I think an upgraded TOS is fine. TOS 1.62 fixes a few bugs, notably the ability to boot in medium res with the standard setting in DESKTOP.INF
As stormzy said there might be defective resistors somewhere, that could be difficult to trace or problems with the WD1772 chip.

Do you have a volt meter? Could you check that the power supply is outputting +5 and +12V. Not too high or too low. A good steady voltage.

There is a myth that the C025913-38 is bad and causes problems with hard disks but there are other factors at play including the quality of the power supply. As far as I know it has not been conclusively proved that the C025913-38 should be replaced. A bad power supply would cause major stability issues and not a very specific error with filename extensions I would think.
Last edited by mlynn1974 on Sun Jun 28, 2020 2:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
Still got, still working: Atari 4Mb STe, 520STFM, 2.5Mb STF.
Hardware: Cumana CSA 354, Ultimate Ripper, Blitz Turbo, Synchro Express II (US and UK Versions).

George712
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

The psu has stable voltages at 5 and 12 volts.
I realized that the characters of the extensions are replaced everytime with exact another symbol. Like missing a bit or taking it from another character set

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by czietz »

George712 wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 1:50 am
I realized that the characters of the extensions are replaced everytime with exact another symbol. Like missing a bit or taking it from another character set
You're right about that. Assuming that the correct file name is e.g. "GEMDEMO2.BAS", you need to take away bit 6 to get to "GEMDEMO2.⇩⇧3" (with the 3 displayed as it would be on a seven-segment display). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atari_ST_character_set

It's hard, however, to come up with a theory why pull-up resistors, the DMA chip, etc. would only ever affect the file extension.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by mlynn1974 »

It would be handy to test this STE with a known working TOS ROM, and get a dump of that one to see what is wrong with it.
Still got, still working: Atari 4Mb STe, 520STFM, 2.5Mb STF.
Hardware: Cumana CSA 354, Ultimate Ripper, Blitz Turbo, Synchro Express II (US and UK Versions).

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by ThorstenOtto »

I agree with @czietz. Any hardware failure would either make the floppy completely unreadable, or at least also the corrupt the filenames, and not only the extensions.

Only reason that i could think of is an corrupted TOS ROM, that somehow mangles the extension. If possible, you should try to dump the ROM and compare it to a known, working version.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by Zippy »

I think there's something about the FDC dealing wth 16 ($10) bytes at a time, but not sure if it actually has a 16 byte hardware buffer or exactly how it works, or if the 16 byte chunks are processed by the DMA hardware.

The file extension part will always be at the same offset into every 16 byte block (at bytes 8,9,10 of 0-15 IIRC, 0-7 being the filename) so it could still be theoretically possible there's some strange hardware fault here, rather than something in software causing it.

I'm no expert on the FDC hardware side though, maybe one of the guys who knows could comment.

I've seen that partially corrupted filenames thing on my own original ST, I swapped out to another drive and it was OK for a while longer, before completely failing to read anything at all. I ended up getting a MegaST instead and my original ST is still lying around here somewhere with a non-working drive, so interested to hear the answer to this one myself.
Last edited by Zippy on Sun Jun 28, 2020 5:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

George712
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by George712 »

This really looks more like a software bug.
I have also an ATARI STFm, would a possible minor revision TOS work on a STE too?

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by ThorstenOtto »

IIRC you need at least 1.62. 2.06 should also work, if you can use 256k ROMs.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by joska »

George712 wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 1:03 am
I have dma c0259-13-38
This *could* be your problem (the "bad DMA" myth is not a myth), but I find it highly unlikely that your STE has had this problem since new. "Fixes" like the termination resistors, HC CPU etc that has been mentioned are just workarounds for the real problem. Whatever that is, but I would guess DMA or floppy controller. Having access to a diagnostics cartridge would help here, since you're unable to run any software from floppy.
czietz wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 7:11 am
It's hard, however, to come up with a theory why pull-up resistors, the DMA chip, etc. would only ever affect the file extension.
It does not. If you read the first post it clearly says that file contents is corrupted too.
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by stormy »

Why not try the pull up resistor mod I posted earlier? It can't do any harm, and might fix the issue.
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by joska »

Well, unless this STE has had this error since day one, something has changed/broken that causes this. If the resistor mod makes any difference it does not *fix* the problem, only works around it. What's broken is still broken.
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by susher »

Not really. The STE is marginal as built and the drift in components with age could have just pushed it over the edge. There should always have been pull-ups on those lines, but it just happens that they have floated high enough to work by a happy accident.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by mfro »

joska wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 8:22 am
czietz wrote:
Sun Jun 28, 2020 7:11 am
It's hard, however, to come up with a theory why pull-up resistors, the DMA chip, etc. would only ever affect the file extension.
It does not. If you read the first post it clearly says that file contents is corrupted too.
I find that hard to believe either. It appears the number of directory entries and free space on disk is displayed correctly. In order to get to the shown display, it must have read at least the boot sector and most of the FAT correctly, already.

If I had to guess, I'd put my money on some flipped bits in the ROMs (maybe at the character case conversion before file name display).

I'd at least try to boot a floppy based TOS before any hardware change.

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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by joska »

George712 wrote:
Sat Jun 27, 2020 1:09 pm
The STE doesn't bot from floppy (goes into a loop), but it can read the content after booting without disk. When opening a Txt-file, the content is partially read correct partially you have also this cryptic mess.
But yes, a corrupted TOS is not unlikely.
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Re: Atari STE: Drive A: diplays files with cryptic extensions

Post by beel1 »

Could it be bad RAM?

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