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Is my Ultimate 1MB faulty?

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I've recently installed my ultimate 1MB but since than I've had issues with the computer.

I've now had three times where the computer froze on either loading or regular use after which it gives a black screen, which seem to only be fixable (and has been fixable up to this point) by removing the U1MB for half an hour or so. Getting of it off power however doesn't solve that issue.
Also some software like AD:6502 (Arsantica 2) by Desire seems to either not run or have graphical glitches (boogie night doesn't run at all, AD:6502 has glitchy bar popping across the screen during the mountain part of the demo).

Is my 1MB faulty or could it possibly be something else?

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What kind of machine is your U1MB installed in? And do you have good photos of the installation showing the jumper connections, etc?

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Now I would like to see the BIOS screen in order determine the memory use OS and other parameters used for booting atr's or Cartridge.

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So some games and demo's don't like max memory or fast SIO speeds. And also the time has not been set (only fast visual if Bios is keeping the settings between coldstarts). Do you have a Side cartridge are you every planning to run SpartaDos X 44x or only ATR's. What is you loading preference Floppy drive or emulated SIO drives like Respect, APE, or other SIO2PC program. you should also upgrade the BIOS with the latest product from fjc web site.

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Sounds like address line issues or even a dry joint somewhere if thermally related. Ribbon cables are a weak spot, and you can troubleshoot soldering by pressing down on the CPLD chip (the square one) when it's warm to see if glitches go away.

 

Those patched wires (connectors half way along their length) are a bad idea too: too many points of potential poor connectivity.

 

Run XRAM as well in case one of the SRAM chips went bad. Also, try replacing 74LS08 (near the CPU) with one from another machine.

Edited by flashjazzcat
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Changing setting doesn't do anything, pressing down on the CPLD also doesn't do anything, Patched wires I was planning on fixing but multimeter says their fine, XRAM doesn't seem to have found anything and I don't have another machine so I can't replace 74LS08

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Changing setting doesn't do anything, pressing down on the CPLD also doesn't do anything, Patched wires I was planning on fixing but multimeter says their fine, XRAM doesn't seem to have found anything and I don't have another machine so I can't replace 74LS08

Do you have a continuity tester (multi-meter)? It would be worth testing all the signal lines on the ribbon cables. As for a spare machine: it's well worth getting one, or at least spending a couple of quid on a 74LS08 from eBay. The only other option is to send the machine to someone with the necessary spares and test equipment to figure it out.

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Ribbon cables seem to be fine. I might be able to lend a spare machine from a friend of mine.
Meanwhile I'm trying to update the firmware of the Ultimate using a sio2SD, however when I type in spartaDOS "UFLASH.XEX" it gives me error "148 unknown file system", also the manual refrences "FIRMWARE.ATR", that file seems to be nowhere found.

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Yep: I probably abandoned the ATR but didn't yet get around to amending the manual. There's a firmware update in the offing as well which I simply haven't had time to prepare.

 

The XEX can't be read by SpartaDOS if you just mount the executable using SIO2SD, which I presume is what you've done. Try the attached ATR which I've just prepared for you:

 

U1MB.atr

 

Mount the ATR on D1: and then type DIR to list the files. UFLASH.XEX is there, plus the individual fiirmware components, the complete firmware (FIRMWARE.ROM), and a full 512KB ROM. You'll probably want to flash FIRMWARE.ROM to the "firmware" slot, and that's all there is to it.

 

However: if your system is unstable and unpredictable, think carefully before performing the update. It won't fix your hardware issues and may even end up making things worse or bricking the machine.

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Fixed my initial issues, AD6502 was due to, seemingly, a bad transfer to the SD and with boogie nights I simply didn't hold option long enough to disable BASIC which seems like a beginner mistake.

Aside from that I currently have the issue that the flash disk doesn't run most of the time (I'd get "Device NAK") and when it does run it says the rom files have lower than expected file size 0kb.

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If you're getting intermittent disk IO errors, something is still messed up. Consider sending the machine for repair, since we're entering the phase when it becomes difficult to remotely diagnose the issue.

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Fixed it, needed to disable BASIC again and had to put my SIO2SD on a lower speed. Now it runs everything consistently good.

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Excellent. Just goes to show how difficult it is to diagnose stuff blind, since I was apparently way off the mark. :)

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Thanks for your help anyways, I doubt I'd be able to find a way to update the Firmware without you and that ATR file and would probably have taken way longer to try and lower the SIO2SD speed to see if that works.
BTW is removing the caps (c77 and C78) worth it like stated here http://sio2sd.gucio.pl/wiki/HighSpeed_en?

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The firmware file you need to flash is only 64KB long so should load reasonably quickly even at modest SIO speeds (using SpartaDOS X, which has its own high-speed SIO driver). Removing the caps is worth it when trying to hit 127kb/s, but for anything less I'm not sure whether they impede things too much.

 

Note that the SDX SIO driver has (or has had) issues with low SIO divisors, so once you have the U1MB firmware update applied, you can turn on the built-in HSIO driver and this will reliably handle divisor 0 transmission (essentially the same effect as using the High-Speed patched OS but the U1MB PBI driver works with the stock OS).

Edited by flashjazzcat
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When using Sparta I always keep it around 4, 5, or 8 depending on the computer/d device and such... if you have rom/pbi based hsio you can tell sparta to use that instead of it's own..... how to do so is in the manual and worth reading through for many reasons...

Edited by _The Doctor__

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Sometimes as I found out it can be a limitation in the USB port on a given computer. Laptops (and even some desktops) have notoriously under powered USB ports, and can benefit from a 'powered' USB hub. I have one laptop that even has problems doing the 3x speed, but with a powered hub it runs perfectly even with divisor zero.

 

- Michael

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