Accessing SD data on Megaflashrom SCC+ SD on 64kb MSX2+

Page 3/7
1 | 2 | | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Par Meits

Scribe (6015)

Portrait de Meits

05-01-2020, 22:01

Well, if you know what you have and what you need, and don't need, I think it's good there's the option to not have the extra ram/extra costs. Therefore I'm in the camp of options Tongue

Now I dug up my WSX with 64K. Got an MFR without 512K here. Let's see what I can come up with. If I succeed I'll link an iso.

Just to confirm.
If you boot your computer with the mfr and a µsd card in it, you'll end up in basic. This is what happens when typing the following commands while there's no disk in the diskdrive:

Files
Disk I/O error
Ok
files "c:
Disk offline
Ok

I'm having a bit of a fuzz with getting access to a second or higher partition which needs some rtfm but is tl;dr for me.
What should happen is that _mapdrv ("B:",2) maps b: to the second partition, but I get an Invalid device driver error. Someone who wants to read the manual for you or knows the answer might explain. I'm not eager to find out myself.
Getting a FAT12 partition on the µsd card was rather simple, so I'm not going to host a huge iso with just a 16MB partition on it, in stead I'll lead you through the steps to get there as well.

Here we go:

  • In this example there was already a partition. This will show in the steps. If you see a different step here than on your screen, skip to the next step in this tutorial.
  • There is no ROMdisk present in this tutorial. Remove yours as well if you want this tutorial to work. I'm not putting it back to match possible differences.
  • My µsd's name is 00000
  • Its size is 1GB (954M)

Insert a µsd card in your MFR and (re)boot your computer
You'll end up in Basic
Type:
_fdisk

1. MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD
   v1.1.1 on slot 1-3

ESC. Exit

Press 1

MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD on slot 1-3

2. 00000

ESC. Go back to driver selection screen

Press 2

MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD on slot 1-3 00000 (2)

1. Size: 954M

ESC. Go back to device selection screen

Press 1

MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD on slot 1-3 00000 (2)
Logical unit 1, size: 954M

Changes are not committed until W is pressed.

S. Show partitions
D. Delete all partitions

T. Test device access

Press D
Press Y

MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD on slot 1-3 0000 (2)
Logical unit 1, size: 954M
Unpartitionned space available: 954M

Changes are not committed until W is pressed.

(No partitions found on device)
A. Add one 16M partition
P. Add partition...

T. Test device access

Press A once for one new partition. Every sequential press adds a partition. Press it 5 times to get as many partitions as you have available drive letters and keep FDD 1 (F: ) and 2 (G: ) and ramdisk (H: ) available and have A: - E: available for

MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD
MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD on slot 1-3 00000 (2)
Logical unit 1, size: 954M
Unpartitioned space available: 874M

Changes are not committed until W is pressed.

S. Show partitions (5 defined)
D. Delete all partitions
A. Add one 16M partition
P. Add partition...
U. Undo add 16M partition

W. Write partitions to disk

T. Test device access

Press W
Press Y
Press any key
Press ESC
Press ESC
Press ESC
Press ESC
Ok
You're back in basic.
Switch off your computer and put the µsd card in your PC and copy COMMAND.COM, MSXDOS.SYS, OPFXSD.COM and a bunch of games to your µsd card.
Put it back in your MegaFlashROM SCC+ SD and turn your computer on.
You'll end up in MSX DOS on A:
As mentioned, if you want to access B: and up, someone else will have to help you. But for now you can flash games.

Par wyrdwad

Paladin (846)

Portrait de wyrdwad

05-01-2020, 22:19

Grauw: As mentioned in the OP, this was a gift from a friend, and is a used MFR from long ago. So no, it was not directly from Manuel.

Meits: I'm... unclear on how I can flash games if I can't access the additional partitions, as well as why I'm creating so many partitions at all when all I want to do is flash games? This solution seems overly complicated, since I strictly JUST want to access MSX-DOS from the SD card and be able to run OPFXSD to flash games onto the MFR -- nothing more. I'm not trying for anything fancy here.

Nonetheless, I'll try this when I can (probably not for around 12 hours, as I have work this morning and then a series of errands I need to run) and get back to you. Thanks so much for taking the time to type all of that out! I may not entirely understand the purpose behind it, nor what exactly is happening, but I appreciate the effort you went through to type it all.

-Tom

Par Meits

Scribe (6015)

Portrait de Meits

05-01-2020, 22:49

The point of the above is to get you to access the µsd card. By using the built in tool fdisk you can do just that. That's what's described.

If you have one partition, that's 16MB of space for you. If you have two partitions you'll have 32MB. You don't need more than one partition to be able to flash anything. It's just that I didn't get the second partition accessible the way I expected. Which does not mean it's not possible. The above resulted in me being able to flash a rom file to the flashrom and play it on a similar setup as yours.
Without the above steps you will not be able to access your µsd card.

Edit: the tutorial looks overly complicated because I printscreened every screen, but in the end I tell you to make a couple of choices by 17 button presses Wink
You might need more partitions if you want to store more on your µsd card. If you make that choice right in the beginning, it's handy. If you make that choice later, it's not handy cuz that means you've to first remove everything you put on it and start all over. There's no such thing as adding a partition in this program, only on a clean µsd card.

Par wyrdwad

Paladin (846)

Portrait de wyrdwad

05-01-2020, 23:25

I see! OK. I'll definitely give this a try later, as it sounds super promising. Thank you again for typing all that out! I really appreciate your help, and I appreciate you keeping it simple for me. I feel bad that that's what I need, but it totally is... for now. One day, I'll get better at this! But, you know... baby steps, and all that! Wink

-Tom

Par wyrdwad

Paladin (846)

Portrait de wyrdwad

06-01-2020, 09:41

Well, I just tested it out... and it works! Thank you so much for your help, Meits!

There are two caveats, though -- two quirks that I can't quite figure out, both of which are rather annoying.

One is that my system doesn't recognize the presence of the MFR when I first power it on -- regardless of whether or not the SD card is inserted (as in, even after loading roms onto it, my system still boots into MSX BASIC as if no cartridge has been inserted). I was having this problem before and thought it might have been due to dirty connectors or something, but I finally figured it out: the MFR isn't being detected when the system is powered on, but it IS being detected when I reset. So in order to access the MFR -- either to load roms from the SD card, or to play the roms that have already been loaded onto it -- I have to insert the cartridge, power on my system, wait for the MSX BASIC prompt to show up, then press the Reset button on my system. And only then will the MFR be detected and function as it's supposed to.

No clue why this would be happening, but if anyone has any ideas how to fix it, I'd be quite grateful!

The other even MORE frustrating issue is that I absolutely CANNOT seem to load the English-translated rom of "A Life M36 Planet" onto this MFR. As in, the fan-translation I worked on! I had absolutely NO TROUBLE loading this exact same file onto my other MFR via floppy disk using old-school OPFX, but OPFXSD gives me an "Error reading file" every time I try. I've tried using switches to force it to identify the file as different mapper types, but no matter what switches I use, it just exits OPFXSD with an error every time I attempt to load that game onto the cart.

I don't know what's different between OPFX and OPFXSD that would cause the file to load without issue in OPFX but exit with an error in OPFXSD, but if anyone can figure it out, I'd be most appreciative, as I really want to put M36 on there -- I love that game, and am proud of the work I did on it!

(Alternately, if anyone has any legacy versions of OPFXSD lying around, maybe one of them will be able to load M36? The only version I can find for download online at this point is the latest, which is 1.19, so if anyone has any versions of the program older than that and wouldn't mind sending them to me, I feel like it might be worth a shot!)

Thanks again for all your help!

-Tom

Par Meits

Scribe (6015)

Portrait de Meits

06-01-2020, 10:34

You might want to try and clean the cartridge connector on both cartridge side and computer side. If it's not the reason, it's still a good thing. As for the slot, fold a cut piece of normal printer paper around a credit card, spray it wet with isopropyl alcohol and press it into the slot a few times on different places. You might want to feel like using toilet- or kitchenpaper in stead, but be aware that the connector can nibble off pieces of such paper. So better not use that.

Any older opfxsd will most probably not help you flashing your game successfully. The cause is probably elsewhere. Is it a huge ROM, as in bigger than 1MB? Then your MFRSCC+SD might be the cause. The older ones have a lower size limit than the newer. There is nothing you can do about that yourself.
If you already tried all the manual mapper switches, there's still /U and/or /1. Though still be sure you use the correct mapper in case this game requires that. Normally the MFR is smart enough to figure it out automatically, but it could be wrong sometime(?). Dunno, never ran into it.
Just guessing as I do not have the ROM... Someone else might know the answer. Just hinting some possible options.

Par wyrdwad

Paladin (846)

Portrait de wyrdwad

06-01-2020, 10:47

128 KB rom, so no, that's definitely not it. And like I said, the old OPFX loaded it just fine, so there doesn't SEEM to be any reason OPFXSD wouldn't. It's especially weird since Manuel Pazos himself worked on the rom a bit! Guess I'm going to have to summon him with an email -- or by saying his name three times. Wink

And I'm very careful to clean everything related to MSX cartridges, so that is definitely not the cause here. No other cartridges have any issues, and MFR only loading upon reset is CONSISTENT -- it's not like it's happening at random, but rather it's ALWAYS loading on reset, without fail, and always NOT loading on power-up, without fail. So the problem definitely has something to do with either the cartridge or my system.

-Tom

Par jltursan

Prophet (2317)

Portrait de jltursan

06-01-2020, 11:10

Quote:

No clue why this would be happening, but if anyone has any ideas how to fix it, I'd be quite grateful!

AFAIK, it can't be fixed, all MFR (with RAM or not) suffer from this. The FPGA isn't fast enough to initialize itself before MSX BIOS starts. When using a MFR with RAM the counter doesn't shows the right amount of memory and you need to reset the machine to solve this; I suppose that the RAM-less MFR will behave the same. You don't need to wait until MSX_BASIC starts tho, you can reset just after the MSX logo appears, at least in my case it's enough.

Par Meits

Scribe (6015)

Portrait de Meits

06-01-2020, 11:14

I have no ram on my mfr and it behaves normal on every computer I have.

Par wyrdwad

Paladin (846)

Portrait de wyrdwad

06-01-2020, 12:14

jltursan wrote:
Quote:

No clue why this would be happening, but if anyone has any ideas how to fix it, I'd be quite grateful!

AFAIK, it can't be fixed, all MFR (with RAM or not) suffer from this. The FPGA isn't fast enough to initialize itself before MSX BIOS starts. When using a MFR with RAM the counter doesn't shows the right amount of memory and you need to reset the machine to solve this; I suppose that the RAM-less MFR will behave the same. You don't need to wait until MSX_BASIC starts tho, you can reset just after the MSX logo appears, at least in my case it's enough.

Again, though, my old MFR (the one without SD card slots) didn't do this -- it's a 1 MB MFR SCC+ that I need to load onto from floppy disk with OPFX, and that one starts right up from a cold boot every time. I don't really understand why this new one wouldn't, since nothing has changed in my system configuration, and the only things that are different between this MFR and the old one are the existence of two SD slots and 8 MB of internal ROM rather than only 1 MB.

-Tom

Page 3/7
1 | 2 | | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7