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How to acquire Telco

Telco TI-99/4A

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#1 jmazzy OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 4:38 PM

Greetings.

 

I recently needed to move my TI-99/4A out of a family crawl space and decided that, rather than pack it away again in a closet, I'd indulge in an occasional trip down memory lane and actually use it.  So I now have it set up in my bedroom.  I did a few Google searches to help me get my feet wet again (it's been over 20 years since I've used it regularly), and I came across the posting:  Telnet - Getting your TI on the Internet & TI BBS's

 

I'm currently in the process of setting up a UDS-10 as laid out in that topic.  (Many thanks to Omega for beginning the topic and to those people who contributed to it.)

 

Back in the day, I used Terminal Emulator II along with a 300 baud Volksmodem to attach to CompuServe and a few local BBS's.  But from the discussions I'm reading now, it seems Telco may be the most ideal terminal program for my future connections to BBS's.  (I haven't connected to anything since the unpacking.  I still need to finish preparing my UDS-10.)

 

So my question:  how do I get Telco?  I know I can download a copy of it from WHT.  But...downloading that with my MacBook obviously means a copy of it lives...on my MacBook, not on a TI diskette.  So how do I actually get the Telco program to my TI-99/4A?  Since WHT seems to have it available for download as a DSK file, I assume I have to prepare a TI diskette and copy the program to it.  But I not entirely sure how I would take the downloaded file from my MacBook and get it onto a TI diskette.

 

The wheels in my head are turning now, and I'm wondering if this means I need to run some sort of TI-99/4A emulator app on my Mac along with an attached diskette drive.

 

I imagine somewhere there's an explanation of how to do what I'm trying to do, but I haven't found it yet.  Rather than continuing to search, and since I'm past-due to get involved in some discussions here, I decided to pose the question to all of you.

 

Any guidance or information would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks!

 

- Jerry


Edited by jmazzy, Mon Mar 2, 2015 4:42 PM.


#2 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 5:31 PM

Ahhh, the chicken and the egg...

 

The easiest solution is to ask someone here to send you a disk.  What type of drive(s) do you have?



#3 sprintcarfan OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 5:34 PM

I just went through the same ordeal this past weekend.... I have a console and loaded PEB, but with no modern hardware like HDX boards, or floppy emulators.  I have a Terminal Emulator II cartridge and tried to transfer between the TI and various TI emulators on my PC, but didn't have much luck for whatever reason.  I ended up typing in a crude assembly program that was listed in the October 1989 Micropendium magazine.  It uses Xmodem and can talk to Hyperterminal,etc on a modern computer.  I compiled it and was able to transfer MagicFM using this terminal emulator on the TI and Qmodem Pro on a PC.  As long as you have an E/A cartridge, RS232 card, and some kind of term program on your Mac that supports Xmodem, you should be able to transfer files and open up more possibilities.

Attached Files


Edited by sprintcarfan, Mon Mar 2, 2015 5:35 PM.


#4 arcadeshopper ONLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 5:49 PM

few ways to accomplish this most of which you won't be able to do without something on your TI to load programs with.. There is no reliable way to write a ti disk on modern hardware.. As everything's hd and all the controllers that would do the lower density are long gone from computers..  

 

Easiest way is to get a copy of magicfm on disk.  I can mail you one if you pm me that will give you a good starting point.. you load magicfm on the TI, and an xmodem capable term on the pc, then use that to talk to the TI, copy files over..etc.. over a straight through cable db25-db9 (assuming your pc has db9 anymore, might need a usb to rs232 adapter some are peices of crap and don't work.. ymmv) 

 

Another easy way is to use a XB2.7 cart and the hdx utility on it with hdx server on the pc..but then you need the cart..which is about 50$ for a nice one or you can buy a ubergrom with the burn on my website arcadeshopper.com 

 

Greg


Edited by arcadeshopper, Mon Mar 2, 2015 6:04 PM.


#5 atrax27407 OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 7:36 PM

Do you have disk drives in your PEB? Are they 5.25" or 3.5" drives? What kind of disk controller card do you have? Are they SSSD, DSSD, or DSDD? I can send you a copy of TELCO if you let me know what configuration your drives are.

#6 jmazzy OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 8:29 PM

Thank you all for the helpful feedback!

 

While I think I may have the requisite cables for a Mac-to-TI file transfer, I agree w/Omega that receiving a diskette from a fellow user would be the easiest route for me. (Although I am interested in digging deeper into the Magic File Manipulator program for some potential future projects.)  So, Atrax, I appreciate your offer and will take you up on it.

 

I have a console and a PEB with one RS232 card, one internal 5.25" diskette drive (model # PHP1250), and one disk system card (model # PHP1240).  It's been ages since I've used the diskette drives so I'm having trouble remembering the supported diskette format.  But, according to the PHP1240 documentation I'm looking over now, looks like it's SSSD.



#7 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Mar 2, 2015 8:39 PM

Later, if the TI bug really bites hard, you might want to consider << one of these >>.  A lot of the guys are starting to get them as it makes moving files a snap and you don't have to mess with disks or even get a program first.  Of course, being that you are using a MAC it may be a little more bothersome.. because from what I understand, depending upon the model, you may not even have an SD card slot.  If you do, you'll have to run Windows on it to use TI99Dir and I think to even format the SD card.



#8 kl99 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 2:01 AM

HI Jmazzy! If you have a working Serial connection between TI and WindowsPC I can send you a not yet released Windows Program that solves the Egg/Chicken problem for you.
All you need is to type then on the TI-99 is OLD RS232.BA=9600 and the loading of a PROGRAM starts, it should work with an Assembler Program as well.



#9 mizapf OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 4:15 AM

There is no reliable way to write a ti disk on modern hardware.. As everything's hd and all the controllers that would do the lower density are long gone from computers.. 

 

The situation is not so bad, but still difficult. You can use DD disks in a modern floppy drive, but you have to configure the floppy controller so that the format can be read by the TI controller.

 

Some time ago (ouch... 6 years ago already!) I and Gerhard Wiesinger wrote two C programs (Linux) that allow to read and write TI floppies on a PC drive (3.5 or 5.25). Maybe this can be ported to Mac.



#10 atrax27407 OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 7:54 AM

If you still want the TELCO disk, send me a PM.



#11 Schmitzi OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 10:38 AM

...or just take OmniFlop. Works fine.

Here you can format TI-Disk-Format at your local drive,

and also transfer DSK-Files to them.

 

(don´t forget to change your Floppy- AND your Floppycontrollerdriver in windows, for that)



#12 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 10:44 AM

I ended up typing in a crude assembly program that was listed in the October 1989 Micropendium magazine.  It uses Xmodem and can talk to Hyperterminal,etc on a modern computer.  I compiled it and was able to transfer MagicFM using this terminal emulator on the TI and Qmodem Pro on a PC. 

 

 That's BAD ASS!   Desperation as the mother of problem solving?  :-D

 I respect your perseverance! 



#13 Schmitzi OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 11:14 AM

not BAD ASS, it´s GOOD ASSembly :)



#14 jmazzy OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 12:21 PM

Later, if the TI bug really bites hard, you might want to consider << one of these >>.  A lot of the guys are starting to get them as it makes moving files a snap and you don't have to mess with disks or even get a program first.  Of course, being that you are using a MAC it may be a little more bothersome.. because from what I understand, depending upon the model, you may not even have an SD card slot.  If you do, you'll have to run Windows on it to use TI99Dir and I think to even format the SD card.

 

Yes, I can easily see the value in this device.  It's on my To-Purchase list now.  Thanks.

 

I'm certainly intrigued, and I have an array of questions about it.

 

My primary question, though, is:  if my PEB drive slot is currently occupied, how would I connect the Lotharek unit to my system?  I assume I can purchase an external version of the Lotharek unit?  ...and then just connect that unit to my PEB's disk system via ribbon cable?



#15 Schmitzi OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 1:50 PM

yes, should work



#16 sprintcarfan OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Mar 3, 2015 9:13 PM

 

 That's BAD ASS!   Desperation as the mother of problem solving?  :-D

 I respect your perseverance! 

If I'm not mistaken, you, or someone on here posted a link to that assembly listing not long ago.  I think you said it was originally typed up by Jacques Groslouis.  I probably wouldn't have attempted to type the source in from the scanned article if it weren't for that.  The text is too hard to read in the article and I don't know assembly well enough to know what to expect when there are fuzzy characters.



#17 twoodland OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Oct 21, 2018 3:37 PM

HI Jmazzy! If you have a working Serial connection between TI and WindowsPC I can send you a not yet released Windows Program that solves the Egg/Chicken problem for you.
All you need is to type then on the TI-99 is OLD RS232.BA=9600 and the loading of a PROGRAM starts, it should work with an Assembler Program as well.

 

kl99 - I sure would be interested in the Windows Program that solves the Egg/Chicken problem as I am in the same boat.



#18 --- Ω --- OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:54 PM

BTW - Now that you are running Telco, be sure to << CLICK HERE >> 



#19 JB OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Oct 22, 2018 5:14 AM

 

kl99 - I sure would be interested in the Windows Program that solves the Egg/Chicken problem as I am in the same boat.

Thank you for bumping this, as it brought information I needed to my attention.

 

 

I just went through the same ordeal this past weekend.... I have a console and loaded PEB, but with no modern hardware like HDX boards, or floppy emulators.  I have a Terminal Emulator II cartridge and tried to transfer between the TI and various TI emulators on my PC, but didn't have much luck for whatever reason.  I ended up typing in a crude assembly program that was listed in the October 1989 Micropendium magazine.  It uses Xmodem and can talk to Hyperterminal,etc on a modern computer.  I compiled it and was able to transfer MagicFM using this terminal emulator on the TI and Qmodem Pro on a PC.  As long as you have an E/A cartridge, RS232 card, and some kind of term program on your Mac that supports Xmodem, you should be able to transfer files and open up more possibilities.

And thank you for bringing the Micropendium article to my attention. It is EXACTLY what I needed.

 

Yes, I could have thrown money at the bootstrap problem with a disk emulator and a flash drive full of files, or an HDX card, or so on and so forth. But I wanted to do this with only period hardware on the TI. It was supposed to be a fun project, before everything went wrong(basically every problem I had was related to learning TE2 is "quaint" at best, and figuring out how to get files on the system). This gets the train back on the tracks. 



#20 acadiel ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Oct 25, 2018 6:58 PM

Kl99’s solution reminds me of ADT for the Apple. You boot a utility to transfer disk images over a Java servlet over a serial port.




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