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apersson850

Pascal on the 99/4A

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I found the newsletter (Programbiten) from 1987, where I wrote a recommendation for how to distribute the files, if you were to use the UCSD p-system with two SS/SD diskettes. I can replicate that article here, if useful to anyone, but I'm not too convinced anyone is trying to run a system with that kind of configuration nowadays?

 

If you don't ask for that information, I'll not do the work of writing it here. But if somebody needs it, then I'll do it.

Edited by apersson850

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A lifetime ago, when I still had my original TI-99/4a, I had gotten my hands on a P-Code card, and if I recall, including all disks and manuals. Sadly, I let that go when my daughter was born and I was making room.

 

Two questions:

 

1) I've been rebuilding my TI-99/4a setup over the last year, and just snagged a p-code card on eBay, as well as the manuals for Editor, Filer, and Utilities. Those should arrive soon. However, I do not have the disks as this was card only, nor the manuals for assembler/linker, which I was told were originally sold separately from the p-code system...? (since we're talking p-code for running in the p-system, not machine code, I'm assuming we're not talking about some reuse of the assembler/linker from Editor/Assembler, are we? guessing this was something dedicated to the p-system)

 

2) Based on CRU/DSR for the P-Code card, any particular slots it should go into? I know some cards could go anywhere and some were particular about where and what order.

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3 hours ago, patrickmcmichael said:

A lifetime ago, when I still had my original TI-99/4a, I had gotten my hands on a P-Code card, and if I recall, including all disks and manuals. Sadly, I let that go when my daughter was born and I was making room.

 

Two questions:

 

1) I've been rebuilding my TI-99/4a setup over the last year, and just snagged a p-code card on eBay, as well as the manuals for Editor, Filer, and Utilities. Those should arrive soon. However, I do not have the disks as this was card only, nor the manuals for assembler/linker, which I was told were originally sold separately from the p-code system...? (since we're talking p-code for running in the p-system, not machine code, I'm assuming we're not talking about some reuse of the assembler/linker from Editor/Assembler, are we? guessing this was something dedicated to the p-system)

 

2) Based on CRU/DSR for the P-Code card, any particular slots it should go into? I know some cards could go anywhere and some were particular about where and what order.

All the pcode disks and manuals as well as a tutorial document are located here.

The card can go into any available slot.

 

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6 hours ago, Vorticon said:

All the pcode disks and manuals as well as a tutorial document are located here.

The card can go into any available slot.

 

Thank you! Where can I get the content for the disks that came w/ the p-code card? The zip file appeared to be PDF manuals only (super useful...just need the disks since my eBay purchase wasn't the full set, and I'll eventually put this on FD emulator anyhow).

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Although I've mainly stayed with the real 99/4A, or use a modern computer in the way that's intended, I'm aware that there are methods to transfer disk images (PC ecosystem) to real diskettes, that can be used by the 99/4A. But I've never used them. The other method is of course having somebody make copies of the original disks for you.

 

You're right in that the assembler and linker for the p-system have no relation to the Editor/Assembler package. Except for being able to assemble TMS 9900 code, of course.

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4 hours ago, patrickmcmichael said:

Thank you! Where can I get the content for the disks that came w/ the p-code card? The zip file appeared to be PDF manuals only (super useful...just need the disks since my eBay purchase wasn't the full set, and I'll eventually put this on FD emulator anyhow).

Hmmm... It looks like the link to the disks is dead.

Here are the images. I'm also including the Turtle Graphics disk and manual developed by apersson850. He's our UCSD Pascal guru for the TI :)

 

ASM-LNK.DSK

COMPILER.DSK

EDT-FIL.DSK

UCSD-UTI.DSK

turtle.dsk

UCSD Turtlegraphics manual.rtf

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So I've got a TIPI in my PEB now at CRU 1000, which is lower than my disk controller living at 1100. Shouldn't I theoretically be able to use TIPI drives mapped to DSK1-DSK3 with my pcode card? I tried that and it did not work...

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No, you shouldn't, because if I've understood it correctly, TIPI doesn't implement sector access. Or simulated sector access, is probably the right expression. The p-system uses sector access at the bottom level, then implements its own file system on top of that. If the TIPI doesn't list the sector read/write subprogram in its DSR, then it will not be accessed.

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2 hours ago, apersson850 said:

No, you shouldn't, because if I've understood it correctly, TIPI doesn't implement sector access. Or simulated sector access, is probably the right expression. The p-system uses sector access at the bottom level, then implements its own file system on top of that. If the TIPI doesn't list the sector read/write subprogram in its DSR, then it will not be accessed.

Thanks for the explanation. Makes sense. Too bad though as it would have sped up compilation quite a bit compared to physical disk access.

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Posted (edited)

With some operating system patching, you can use a RAM-disk. Just beware of the current ROS software for the Horizon RAM-disk. It exploits a characteristic of the console's DSRLNK routine, but that fails when the subprogram is called from the p-system.

Or the TIPI thing could be modified to provide a storage area with simulated sector access.

Edited by apersson850

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1 hour ago, apersson850 said:

With some operating system patching, you can use a RAM-disk.

I sold my RAM disk when I got a TIPI. It just did not make sense to have both. Oh well...

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Posted (edited)

We are writing around each other. I just edited my previous post, to make it a bit more comprehensive.

I do use a Horizon RAM-disk with my p-system. Either I run an older DSR on the RAM-disk, or use one I wrote myself. My own only supports sector access, so it's useful only with the p-system. And could be used by some Forth-systems, I presume.

 

The reason for that the operating system (p-system) must be modified a bit to allow for a RAM-disk is that the BIOS, doing the lowest level disk access, presumes that only one disk controller exists. In other words, that all disks are accessed via a controller with one single CRU base address. So modifying it to allow the use of four disks, if you replace the TI controller with a CorComp, is as simple as filling in the existing tables for the fourth disk with the same values as for the first three. It's still the same controller. But a fifth disk will not do, if that disk has a different CRU base address.

 

By the way, if the compiler is on a RAM-disk, compile time is reduced to about half on a real TI 99/4A.

Edited by apersson850
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On 7/20/2020 at 5:05 AM, Vorticon said:

Hmmm... It looks like the link to the disks is dead.

Here are the images. I'm also including the Turtle Graphics disk and manual developed by apersson850. He's our UCSD Pascal guru for the TI :)

 

ASM-LNK.DSK 90 kB · 3 downloads

COMPILER.DSK 90 kB · 3 downloads

EDT-FIL.DSK 90 kB · 3 downloads

UCSD-UTI.DSK 90 kB · 3 downloads

turtle.dsk 536.88 kB · 3 downloads

UCSD Turtlegraphics manual.rtf 59.93 kB · 3 downloads

Thank you!

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20 hours ago, apersson850 said:

We are writing around each other. I just edited my previous post, to make it a bit more comprehensive.

I do use a Horizon RAM-disk with my p-system. Either I run an older DSR on the RAM-disk, or use one I wrote myself. My own only supports sector access, so it's useful only with the p-system. And could be used by some Forth-systems, I presume.

 

The reason for that the operating system (p-system) must be modified a bit to allow for a RAM-disk is that the BIOS, doing the lowest level disk access, presumes that only one disk controller exists. In other words, that all disks are accessed via a controller with one single CRU base address. So modifying it to allow the use of four disks, if you replace the TI controller with a CorComp, is as simple as filling in the existing tables for the fourth disk with the same values as for the first three. It's still the same controller. But a fifth disk will not do, if that disk has a different CRU base address.

 

By the way, if the compiler is on a RAM-disk, compile time is reduced to about half on a real TI 99/4A.

My original TI had a HRD, but not my new one. If TIPI is out due to sector access issue, what about HFE images saved on a Lotharek FD emulator? I bought one of those, but have yet to install it. That's on my list when time allows. Lotharek can act like a DSK1, but not sure whether HFE format it uses will look meet sector access p-code requirement or not.

 

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