Making Tapes and Disks from Images

If you are like me eventually you are going to want to copy images to real media to use on your Adam, or copy real media to images for archiving or emulator use. There are a number of ways to do this.

Note: I have included all the programs and files needed at the end of this article

1. Disk and DCOPY

If you have a disk drive you can use an older PC with a double density 5 1/4″ drive*, MS-DOS and DCOPY to make an Adam disk from a disk image. DCOPY can create a disk image from an Adam formatted disk or create a disk from an Adam disk image.

*To make sure that your 5 1/4″ drive can do double density you can use the program TESTFDC which will test the capabilities of you drive and tell you what it can and can’t do. You can also use the MS-DOS command FORMAT ?: /1 /8 where ? is the drive letter (A or B). This will format a disk so that it is ready to use with DCOPY, if the format fails then odds are your drive can not do the lower capacities.

Creating an image

To create an image from a disk, insert the disk in your floppy drive, we will assume, it is drive B, then at the dos prompt type:

C:>dcopy b: /t:40 /s:8 /h:1 filename.ext

Where filename.ext is the name of the image you wish to create.

Creating a disk

To create a disk from an image, insert a blank disk in your floppy drive, we will assume, it is drive B, then at the dos prompt type the following:

C:>format b: /1 /8
C:>dcopy filename.ext /t:40 /s:8 /h:1 b:

Where filename.ext is the name of the image you wish to write to disk.

2. Compact Flash and TDOS

This method will let you create not only disk but tape images. The steps are a little more involved but not too difficult. To do this you will need:

  1. The AdamEm ADAM emulator that supports the Compact Flash (CF)
  2. HDD Raw Copy tool that allows your to read and write images to and from CF
  3. A CF Image that has TDOS
  4. The IDE disk image
  5. A blank 64 MB or larger CF
  6. Blank disk and tape media images
  7. A PC that has a CF adapter
  8. The Dragon’s Lair tape and disk images

If you do not have the emulator installed, unzip it to its own folder. You will also want to also unzip the HDD Raw Copy tool, the IDE disk image, blank media images, Dragon’s Lair images and the TDOS CF image into this folder.

Now open up the adamem.cfg file in the folder using NotePad and edit it to look like this:

-video 2 -da ide.dsk -idea tdos4-59.img -db diskette.dsk -ta datapack.ddp

This tells the emulator to use 320×240 video mode (-video 2), assign the image ide.dsk to disk drive A (-da) and to use the CF image tdos.img (-idea). We are also assigning drive B to a blank diskette image (-db) and tape drive A to a blank data pack image (-ta). You can substitute the filenames of real images if you are going to be making real media from the images.

A quick word on drive letters, numbers. There is no real consistency in how software on the Adam refers to the various drives. In Smart Basic and other software D1 and D2 refer to tapes, D3 and D4 refer to disk drives. In CP/M it depends on your system configuration, if you have disk drives then the disk drives are A and B then the tapes are C and D. If you do not have disk drives then the tapes are A and B. Many other programs refer to the tapes as A & B then the disks as C & D. TDOS lets you define the drives when you configure it. The TDOS image that is linked below is setup so that A,B,C and D are hard drives, E,F,G and H are disk drives, I and J are tape drives and K is a RAM disk. So in the above configuration shown for adamem.cfg the drives are assigned to these images:

E: = ide.dsk (The IDE boot disk)
F: = diskette.dsk (the blank disk)
I: = datapack.ddp (the blank tape)

Now double click on the AdamEm.exe file. It will either open directly into TDOS:

and put you at the A0> prompt or it will open up in the Hard Disk menu.

If  you are in the Hard Disk menu press Wildcard to get into TDOS (F7 on the PC keyboard).

Creating an disk or tape

The following may seem confusing but it has a certain logic to it:

To create a real tape or disk we first need to create a virtual image of a tape or disk image.

In other words, we need to take the image we have, attach it to the emulator configuration so that TDOS sees it as a disk or tape, then create a TDOS image of that media. Then we can copy the TDOS image to Compact Flash, put the CF into the ADAM and use TDOS to create real media out of the image.

So let us say we want want to make a copy of Dragon’s Lair on real media. I have included both the disk and tape image* so you can try both. To begin with, edit the adamem.cfg file so that it looks like this:

-video 2 -da ide.dsk -idea tdos4-59.img -db draglair.dsk -ta draglair.ddp

*Note you should use an old, unneeded game tape for this as they have a game pack directory versus a data pack directory.

After you have updated the .cfg file start AdamEm. First we will create a TDOS disk image of the Dragon’s Lair disk image using

A0> image20 F:160 D:dragdisk

After entering the command you will be presented with a screen telling you to insert the media and press Return. Since we are using the emulated media we only need to press Return. Now the screen will just sit there, believe me it is working, we just don’t have real tape drives or disk drives to let us know this. Eventually it will say Image Written Successfully and return you to the A0> prompt. A quick explanation of the image20 command. The first parameter F:160 is the source drive, in this case drive F is the disk drive assigned to the -db image and the number 160 is the number of tracks to copy. The D:dragdisk is the drive and file we want to save the image on. If you do a dir d: you will see the image. To do a tape we would use the following command:

A0> image20 I:256 D:dragtape

I:256 is the drive I assigned to the first tape drive and 256 is the number of tracks to copy. When it completed we could do a dir d: to see the results.

Now that we have the images in TDOS we can close the emulator and exit back to Windows. Insert a blank Compact Flash card into the adapter. If Windows asks about formatting the drive tell it cancel or no. Now start the HDD Raw Copy Tool. You will be presented with a screen similar to this:

First we need to select the source, so double click on the line that says FILE and use the dialog box to select the image (TDOS4-59.img) we were working on and then click Continue. Now we need to select the Compact Flash we are writing to:

and then click Continue again. We will then see this screen:

at which point we will click Start. You may be prompted about overwriting the CF and such, just follow the prompts till it says it is done.

Now that we are done putting it on the Compact Flash, remove it from the slot and use Sneaker-Net to plug the CF card into the IDE CF adapter on your Adam and then boot it using either the IDE tape or IDE disk. After you are in TDOS, insert a blank tape or disk into either Tape drive 1 or Disk drive 1. Now at the A0> prompt type the following for a tape image:

A0> clone21 d:dragtape i:

When it is done you will have a data pack with Dragon’s Lair on it. To make a disk use:

A0> clone21 d:dragdisk f:

Creating an image from tape or disk

You can use the above method to make images of your tapes or disks, though you will probably want to use the DCOPY method for disks if you have a PC with a 5 1/4″ drive. To use the above just reverse the process so that you start out making TDOS images of the real media onto the CF on the Adam and then Sneaker-Netting the CF to the PC and using the process to make images of the TDOS images using the blank media images supplied.


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