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phaeron

Altirra 3.00 released

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LOL Windows Smart Screen will not allow unrecognized app to run.... I've not run into that before... what's that about.... Go windows woot!

 

Smart Screen is to stop people running .exe files so that they don't get viruses. You can turn this off on Windows 10 by going down to the bottom right hand of the screen and hit the Arrow pointing upward. Then on the icons that are hidden, look for a White Shield.

Click on that and then click on "App and Browser control".

 

Finally turn off "Check Apps and Files" and that should be it. There is an option to turn it off for Microsoft Edge, but you probably don't use that anyway.

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Uh, are you implying that I didn't already try the new interface I added? :?

 

Let's go at it from another angle. What are the most common changes that you do through the menu?

 

I can't help you on this as I haven't tried the new UI yet, but I wanted to tell you that we all sure do appreciate your work and I want to thank you personally on all the work and all the time you put into this for all of us.

 

Honestly dude, I love what you do and I love that you keep doing it. I get to play with Software that started my computing career.

 

Your emulator is one of the best killer apps of Windows. I love the Antic Podcast, but I know those dudes want this emulator on their macs. :)

The day that you have to end this project will kill me and I just want to know that even though some of us are passionate about what we use, doesn't mean that we don't love the man who makes our dreams come true every day.

 

Yeah, I know, that sounds really corny, but I wanted make sure you know that we care about you and your emulator. :)

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Bit too much man love for me there but I'm sure Phaeron appreciates being appreciated :)

 

And DO try the new UI, not just because of it but because every beta usually introduces new additions so technically you are missing out, also, Phaerons beta's are normally rock solid so the old wait for final build isn't really an issue with Altirra..Add to that any bugs found are normally fixed a day later and you can pretty much totally rely on Altirra to be very close to final build at all times bar any additions Avery has planned.

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Uh, are you implying that I didn't already try the new interface I added? :?

 

Let's go at it from another angle. What are the most common changes that you do through the menu?

 

Ok... the menu items from 3.0 and older I use alot from the System menu are: Hardware, Firmware, Memory Config and Video.

 

And sometimes if I don't want to listen to cassette or disk images load in real time, the Cassette and Disk menus.

 

Alot of it has to do with software compatibility. And in the case of video, whether the program is using artifacting or not, or NTSC/PAL.

 

Granted, you have put a "Profile" menu item in, and you can add to it.

 

But there's probably a over a hundred different combinations of Hardware, Firmware, Memory Config and Video that I would have to add just to make up for the lack of those menu items still being there.

 

I think configuration windows are better for more complicated tasks, like browsing for a disk image to load.

 

For just throwing a switch or two, I'd rather have the menu items back.

 

Thanks for your consideration...

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Regarding the profiles, I'd love to see a lock feature on them, I often fiddle about when trying to load something and change a device and forget its going to affect the profile only for it to be added as an updated profile that isn't the clean machine I started with.

 

Yeah I know, temporary profile, I just end up clicking a clean out of the box machine and then tinkering without thinking....For me its too easy to change a profile without warning...

 

Just a personal niggle, nothing of importance...

Edited by Mclaneinc
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okay my asking about yielded yet another idea

a single quick setup window of the emulator with a tick box next to the most used and or changed items for the everyday user.

a single quick setup window of the emulator with a tick box next to the most used / changed items for the everyday coder/programmer.

still keeping the menus, and adding the other useful stuff you think others mentioned were good. You could probably just link one to the other behind the scenes.

Edited by _The Doctor__

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Make default firmware observe profile changes and it's all good. :) Love the configuration dialog and it's become second nature now.

 

How about a checkbox to start Altirra with the debugger open? My Altirra launch procedure is:

 

1. Start Altirra

2. Open debugger

 

If it's already possible, I missed it. ;)

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Make default firmware observe profile changes and it's all good. :) Love the configuration dialog and it's become second nature now.

 

 

Ditto. Please don't go back to the swarm of menus. They're a real pain when you're looking for an obscure configuration option you know is there somewhere but can't remember where. The way Windows will remove the pop-out menus if you move your mouse cursor a pixel too far away from the menu while you read the text sure doesn't help that either.

 

In short, I love the configuration panel. I know you (phaeron) don't like floating palettes, and I totally get that, but one of the only ways I'd change Altirra now would be to add an option to detach and move the configuration dialog so that the user can make changes on the fly - bear in mind I may be an edge case. I don't usually use Altirra full-screen, as I have a 15" 4K laptop display and the option to drive two additional displays. While I'm at it, I might as well toss out a vote for the option to detach a separate, persistent disk drive/media pane. Atari800MacX had that feature and I loved it. I continued the "real Atari" metaphor and allowed the user to determine what disk, cassette or .xex images were loaded in which drive(s) and/or cued to run on boot. But again, I have a relatively large/high-dpi display and can easily handle extra windows; others don't. *shrug*

 

EDIT: Oh, the Disk Drive panel *is* persistent and can stay visible during regular windowed Altirra operation. How did I not notice this before now? Thanks, Avery! :)

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http://www.virtualdub.org/beta/Altirra-3.10-test9.zip

http://www.virtualdub.org/beta/Altirra-3.10-test9-src.zip

 

  • Modem registers now hooked up: S8 (dial comma delay), S11 (DTMF tone time), S12 (escape sequence guard time). Note that S2 (guard character) is still a better way to disable the escape sequence than S12.
  • Modem dialing and handshaking sequences are now emulated including sound. It will use different audio sequences for 300 baud (Bell 103), 1200/2400 baud (Bell 212), and 4800/9600 baud (V.32). For now, you'll all be subjected to phone network sounds from North America. Note that increased delay from the handshaking sequence can cause problems with servers that quickly drop idle connections, in which case the handshake portion might need to be disabled. DTMF tone dialing is implemented but not interpreted, so it will still use the dial proxy address for anything dialed ATDT instead of ATDI. There is not yet handshaking simulation for accepting calls (ATA/ATS0=1).
  • Dialing out can now be interrupted.
  • Added option to raise the bottom of the display to clear the indicators (View > Overscan > Indicator Margin).

/debug has been in for a long time but the command-line help was pretty ugly -- I only cleaned it up for 3.00.

 

The Disk Drives dialog was just made modeless in 3.10-test. Making the configuration dialog modeless is a possibility but there are problems with doing so as it'd have to live update to track changes. I had to do some work for Disk Drives to update live, and that's a lot more complicated for the configuration dialog. Menus didn't have this problem because they updated every time you opened them -- which you had to do a lot.

 

There's already a quick setup wizard on first launch and in Tools, and I don't want to go down that route further -- it's just slapping more putty on top instead of actually fixing the underlying UI problems. Biggest problem is there simply isn't much consistency in the difference between a beginner and a power user. Another way to put it: although everyone only uses 10% of the program, it's never the same 10%.

 

The list that eccofonic posted is pretty extensive. I've thought about putting in some macro-buttons like "turn off all acceleration," but that only covers some cases. One other thought is possibly putting in a summary page in the configuration dialog that gives a high-level view of the current setup and if particular settings are enabled that have compatibility or accuracy concerns. I had an idea that I could use this to also replace that mediocre emulation crash dialog and put quick fix links in here like "make faster" and "make more accurate."

 

Profile system does need a little work. One big problem that keeps cropping up is that I keep forgetting which profile is active. Been thinking about adding customizable window caption support to show that.

 

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+1 to Phaeron for cranking out the additions and fixes. I hope you remember that food and sleep are required and that direct human contact can be a good thing!

 

Seriously, with all else that living entails It's impressive you've found the time to tackle all of this.. big and small.

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thank you Avery !

let me find out.

is it planned in the emulator, support for other languages other than English ?

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I'm not sure I'm a big fan of the UI changes. I'll have to continue playing with it more to see if I can get used to it.

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I'm sure that with test 5 I witnessed curing of the unwanted OS reboots when Rapidus was present, but I went to set Rapidus up again last night to test a driver and the issue came back and I can't seem to get rid of it. I'm assuming the emulated board does not require a heatsink. :)

 

Downgraded all the way back to test 5 from test 9 and it's no different. Pretty basic setup:

 

* U1MB or standard 1MB RAM upgrade (either behaves the same; indeed, I think the RAM size makes no difference)

* IDE Plus 2.0 on PBI device ID 4 (although XEL-CF behaves the same, and I don't think the IDE adapter has anything to do with it)

* SDX enabled (on board U1MB or IDE Plus)

* Rapidus

 

This is the flash ROM I'm using for Rapidus:

 

rapidus.zip

 

It includes the 65C816 OS, which I need. I tried blending a combination of the 65C816 OS with the default flash content (just in case the issue does not exist with Altirra's built-in Rapidus configuration menu), but the two do not seem to work well together (I get an illegal OS entry point error when closing down the setup menu).

 

Like I say, I'm pretty sure I've managed to hit system reset at the SDX prompt with the 65C816 OS present before and not trigger an OS restart, but for the life of me I cannot remember how or why. It seems that the PBI reset handler always detects a Rapidus hardware change and invokes a jump through COLDSV via the code at the top of the stack.

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Whoops.. somehow missed this one..

 

Going back to the earlier MULE and randomness post. I ran into a similar situation with atarixlbox when I added the pokey random scanline counter variable to save states. In my case I remedied it by removing the storage/restoration of it when using the "rewind" feature. That gave me all the randomization I needed. :lol: (I'm not saying phaeron should do that... just making conversation)... :D

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http://www.virtualdub.org/beta/Altirra-3.10-test9.zip

http://www.virtualdub.org/beta/Altirra-3.10-test9-src.zip

 

The list that eccofonic posted is pretty extensive. I've thought about putting in some macro-buttons like "turn off all acceleration," but that only covers some cases. One other thought is possibly putting in a summary page in the configuration dialog that gives a high-level view of the current setup and if particular settings are enabled that have compatibility or accuracy concerns. I had an idea that I could use this to also replace that mediocre emulation crash dialog and put quick fix links in here like "make faster" and "make more accurate."

 

Profile system does need a little work. One big problem that keeps cropping up is that I keep forgetting which profile is active. Been thinking about adding customizable window caption support to show that.

 

 

Thought of two things today...

 

First, how about a user customizable "switch" menu.

 

You can either add a checkmark on/off for something like "Drive Sounds"

 

or add a "seperator bar" like in a bookmark menu, and have the ability to pick one of two or more related items, like Artifacting (None/Standard/High).

 

I also thought about the profiles... how about an Atari 8-bit Construction Set?

 

You drag and drop the features you want for your computer from one list to another. And then once you're done, you have a customized config window.

 

The "switch" menu manager could also be drag and drop...

Edited by eccofonic

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Whoops.. forgot to mention in my earlier post.. Thanks for your work on this emulator. You go above and beyond expectations!

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Should add that there should always be a master config window with all features/settings that can be accessed even if using a limited profile.

 

And when limited, if the user changes something in the master config, the program asks... would you like this to be part of your profile? With Yes/No and checkboxes for "don't ask me for the rest of session" and "don't ask forever".

 

Basically hiding config-zilla and menu-zilla at the same time.

 

Again, thanks for your consideration...

Edited by eccofonic

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I have a question. Is there any way that I can print out Atascii directly using a modern day printer with Altirra?

 

It would be cool to be able to print out Atascii using some kind of Dot Matrix emulation. Maybe even emulate different Atari Printer style output.

 

 

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http://www.virtualdub.org/beta/Altirra-3.10-test10.zip

http://www.virtualdub.org/beta/Altirra-3.10-test10-src.zip

 

  • Fix for RapidOS-related warmstart issues.
  • Fix for refresh issue in history pane. Finally got a repro case -- was related to when the NEXT node got removed. Added invalidate call and we'll see if it sticks.

 

I'm not sure I'm a big fan of the UI changes. I'll have to continue playing with it more to see if I can get used to it.

 

If you could, try to put a finger on what's bugging you. Note that it's meant to be quickly accessible with Alt+S; you'll need to reset your keyboard shortcuts to get that on an existing install for now.

 

One thing that's occurred to me is that the left-hand category list is hard to scan -- think it needs a sort and possibly a tree. Dialog also might be a little too big.

 

I'm sure that with test 5 I witnessed curing of the unwanted OS reboots when Rapidus was present, but I went to set Rapidus up again last night to test a driver and the issue came back and I can't seem to get rid of it. I'm assuming the emulated board does not require a heatsink. :)

Downgraded all the way back to test 5 from test 9 and it's no different. Pretty basic setup:

* U1MB or standard 1MB RAM upgrade (either behaves the same; indeed, I think the RAM size makes no difference)
* IDE Plus 2.0 on PBI device ID 4 (although XEL-CF behaves the same, and I don't think the IDE adapter has anything to do with it)
* SDX enabled (on board U1MB or IDE Plus)
* Rapidus

 

An accelerator, 1MB RAM expansion + ROM switcher, and PBI IDE adapter with onboard SDX is your basic setup? What does your advanced setup look like?

 

Think I figured out the problem. The issue was that MCR bit 7 was getting reverted on warm reset, so each time the 16-bit PBI BIOS had to force an OS restart to get back into the Rapidus OS. I don't have documentation on which bits are reverted on reset, so for now just bit 7 is left alone. That was easy to fix, but that then caused the Rapidus OS to shadow the U1MB BIOS (the U1MB MMU is outside of the accelerator). To work around that I wired a line from U1MB to Rapidus through the system controller to suppress the Rapidus OS until the U1MB has locked config. This is probably not exactly correct but might be similar to what Rapidus does with that mysterious "U1MB compatibility" bit. In any case, this does raise the question of what the Rapidus memory configuration is when the U1MB BIOS is executed on a warm reset; it may be rather interesting if the other MCR/CMCR state is indeed kept and not reverted or suppressed on warm reset, as some of the modes could crash the BIOS.

 

As for the invalid call issue -- implemented the missing $F00040 hook. Best I can tell, it's a callback to allow the firmware to initialize when a 65C816 aware OS boots. Don't need it in the placeholder firmware, so I just stubbed it for now.

 

 

First, how about a user customizable "switch" menu.

 

You can either add a checkmark on/off for something like "Drive Sounds"

 

or add a "seperator bar" like in a bookmark menu, and have the ability to pick one of two or more related items, like Artifacting (None/Standard/High).

 

Sounds great except for being a pain to implement. :)

 

I've thought about a customizable menu. The main issue with it previously was that there was no good way to automatically update it, which was a problem when every feature had to be in the menu to be accessible. That's not necessarily the case now. 'Course, there's always the "I'm stuck in my customizable menu because I removed the customize option" problem.

 

Customizable dialog is more complex and I doubt I'll get there. Currently in order to add items to the configuration dialog I have to manually layout the controls and wire the state exchange, so making that modular and customizable isn't a simple job. The profile system also isn't nearly fine grained enough to be able to handle per-item notifications. The categories only exist when loading and saving settings and there's no way internally to connect the live settings to the profile categories they belong to (the config dialog categories aren't the same as the profile setting categories).

 

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is it planned in the emulator, support for other languages other than English ?

 

Sorry, no current plans for now. I'm not opposed to localization, but I've been too lazy to do so.

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