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ballyalley

Help with 130XE with Possible Bad RAM

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The other day a friend was over and we were testing an Indus drive that he fixed up with my 130XE.  The drive worked fine and we loaded up a RAM Test program since it was on the test disk.  Much to my surprise, the program reported that I had bad RAM at location 01F6 (502 decimal).  I ran the internal ROM test and I got this result:

 

987361131_Atari130XEROMInternalTest_Cropped.jpg.f0582330249f4f7eb92755cbeb840a44.jpg

 

There is a white box on the first row.  It's the sixth box from the right-hand side.  (It might be hard to see in this picture).  This means I have bad RAM, right?

 

I re-ran the memory tester today and the RAM now turns out okay, as in these three pictures:

 

1938163373_MEMCHECKon103XE_01_Cropped.jpg.0b42ae50953dcfda11e5caf1d8179a97.jpg

 

1467985682_MEMCHECKon103XE_02_Cropped.jpg.87834196242cc18057e6d3fce18eb3eb.jpg

 

933564292_MEMCHECKon103XE_03_Cropped.jpg.da8367298a455b2eb3c0af1ed56ec7af.jpg

 

According to "Mapping the Atari," decimal memory location 502 is part of the stack for the OS.  I tried POKE and PEEK commands there from BASIC, but I get unexpected results (which, I think is normal).

 

I'd like to run a burn in RAM test program, probably overnight, that will test all 128K of my 130XE.  Can anyone recommend such a program to me?

 

Adam

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1 hour ago, ballyalley said:

There is a white box on the first row.  It's the sixth box from the right-hand side.  (It might be hard to see in this picture).  This means I have bad RAM, right?

 

No, that means that's the block currently being tested. If the block is red, it's bad.


That said, the built-in tester isn't very detailed. XRAM is a much better RAM test program. 

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1 hour ago, Paul Westphal said:

But this is a good tool to have on hand [eXtended RAM test v0.21.0 (2003-09-16)(-XI-)(SK)(en)[128k].xex]

 

I put this onto a DOS 2.0s disk ATR image and loaded it from my SIO2SD.  It's in the process of running, as can be seen here:

 

XRAM_Test_Cropped.jpg.b4dfebaec2e95b678b8142fe99601327.jpg

 

I'll leave it be for now and see if I can't figure out the directions on how this program actually works tomorrow.  Can anyone point me to some instructions for this RAM test program?

 

Oh, and I love two things:

 

1) The Atari Community - You all are so helpful and full of knowledge.

2) My SIO2SD, which makes using my Atari a breeze (even if my cable is "iffy" and sometimes doesn't give power to my unit).

 

Thanks!

 

Adam

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I use the Pirate Proof software and have had no problems with it. Did you continue with the testing as shown in image four? You can run the Extended ram test to verify the Pirate proof software, results.

 

What programme gave you the bad RAM at location 01F6 (502 decimal)?

 

Regards

 

Andy

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On 12/18/2019 at 9:42 AM, blacka013 said:

Did you continue with the testing as shown in image four? You can run the Extended ram test to verify the Pirate proof software, results.

 

What programme gave you the bad RAM at location 01F6 (502 decimal)?

 

I'm out of town now, so I can't verify the test currently, but I never got the RAM error again.  However, I got the error when the Indus drive was plugged into the 130XE, which I can't replicate again right now (a friend is borrowing the drive's power supply).  I've used the 130XE this week to play some games from an SD card without errors.

 

It was the "Pirate Proof" RAM checker that gave me the RAM error.

 

Adam

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Started working on a 130 XE and I thought everything was fully functional but when I do the self test there is no check of extended ram. When I boot with MYDOS and check the RAM disk, the computer prints out 5 or 6 lines of letters , symbols, and numbers; then it tells me there are just over 2000 available sectors. Does this mean that I have bad extended RAM or could the problem be with the MMU or with the Freddie.

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16 minutes ago, hueyjones70 said:

Started working on a 130 XE and I thought everything was fully functional but when I do the self test there is no check of extended ram. When I boot with MYDOS and check the RAM disk, the computer prints out 5 or 6 lines of letters , symbols, and numbers; then it tells me there are just over 2000 available sectors. Does this mean that I have bad extended RAM or could the problem be with the MMU or with the Freddie.

Many 130XEs do not run a test on the extended RAM.  xRam is a really good program to use.  Another quick test, especially for a stock 130XE, is boot a DOS 2.5 disk.  It should create a RAM disk for you.  I can't remember how many sectors, but it's only 64kB so I am going to guess around 400 to 500 sectors (given that a 90kB disk is 707 or so).

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Thanks for that information, I did check another of my 130XEs later and it didn't do an extended ram test either.  The problem computer seemed to do OK with DOS 2.5 and only acted up with MYDOS.  I switched the resistors and did the memory self test and nothing came up bad and when I booted with MYDOS almost everything was OK but the RAM disk showed that there were two programs in memory that I have never seen before.

130XE RAM Disk.jpg

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It looks like you have a bad bit 0.

DUP.SYS changed to DTP.SXR, with some spaces changed to ! as well.

 

All of these changes (U->T, Y->X, S->R, space->!) are the result of bit 0 changing from a 1 to a 0.

 

If your 130 has the two banks of 8 ram chips, then your bit 0 chip is bad.  I had a similar issue BITD, when I was using Paperclip to write a report and I saw a typo.  I went back and fixed it and then after a bit the typo reappeared.  It wasn't a typo after all, the letter would just change on its own.  I used the bit position of the letter difference to figure out which chip went bad.  In your case, it looks like bit 0 of your ramdisk bank is the issue.

 

 

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The solution Atari provided was MEM.SAV. MEM.SAV is a special file created from the DOS menu. When you type DOS and a file named MEM.SAV exists, then the lower 6K of memory is moved to this file before the utility package (DUP.SYS) is read in. Hence, a copy of the lower 6000 bytes exists on disk. When DOS is left, the MEM.SAV file is read in, restoring memory to what it was.

 

Source: https://www.atariarchives.org/creativeatari/Atari_DOS.php

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I don't remember off the top of my head, but it would be one of the end ones.  They are in order 0..7.

 

OK, checking a schematic, it looks like D0 is on U9 and U26.  U9 is on the R110 bank and U26 is on the R111 bank.

Edited by StickJock

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