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Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 3:29 pm
by leenew
Thank you all for taking time to do this.
It really is appreciated. =D>
Maybe it will be quicker next time :wink:

Lee.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 4:22 pm
by billcarr2005
Mathemagic Land

Using viewtopic.php?f=2&t=9061&p=115830#p115830 as a starting off point as potentially what the value of F07 and F0F were, I've managed to get this working... although the instructions on line 260 of START seem to be somewhat garbled!

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 4:25 pm
by CMcDougall
Westquest Audio:

Code: Select all

Date (D/M/Y) and time:
14/05/2017   17:22

Expected phase shift is +0.
Found :  WESTQUEST 00	Checksum ok
Found :  WESTQUEST 01	Checksum ok
Found :  WESTQUEST 02	Checksum ok
Found :  WESTQUEST 03	Checksum ok
Found :  WESTQUEST 04	Checksum ok
MISSED A BLOCK.
Found :  WESTQUEST 06	Checksum ok
Found :  WESTQUEST 07	Checksum ok
MISSED A BLOCK.
Found :  WESTQUEST 0D	Checksum ok
MISSED A BLOCK.
Found :  WESTQUEST 14	Checksum ok
MISSED A BLOCK.
Found :  WESTQUEST 1E	Checksum ok
all i get with a quick look on laptop, only left channel & only 4mins 1sec of look good waves :x

EDIT; but sound, as you say, knackered, needs rewound /fforward /banged on table /in another shell / tape>tape HiFi decks to pull!

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 10:00 pm
by pau1ie
What I learned:

Before -
  • get the adt2rom (Earlier in the thread) on a disc or disc image
  • Get a solid state recorder
  • Get all the required cables.
  • Get some cassettes which are screwed together so they can be used to replace the enclosure of dodgy ones.
  • Datacentre
  • USB stick
  • Cassette player.
  • 3.5" disc drivee
  • 3.5" discs
  • 5.25" disc drive (I don't have one of these, and it would have been useful)
  • Manual for the recorder you are using
  • ADT manual
  • Datacentre manual
  • DFS manual
  • ADFS manual
Load adt into sideways RAM with

Code: Select all

*srload adt2rom 8000 4
CTRL-BREAK to get the computer to read the ROMs

If the software is on cassette, use

Code: Select all

*xfer tape disc
If this doesn't work, then visually check the speed that the cassette is running at.
If it looks normal, use the recorder to record the audio.
If it looks slow, try fast forwarding and rewinding a few times.
If it is still slow, try to get permission to change the enclosure
Otherwise record it to capture the audio a couple of times.

The software ends up on a 3.5" disc (Assuming that was the default drive). Now transfer it to an image as below.

If the software is on disc.

Put the disc in the drive.
Change to the drive with the disc in it, and export the disc as follows:

Code: Select all

*export -d0 image.ssd
This will write the image to the USB in the datacentre. Also do side 2 if there is one.
If this doesn't work, then adt comes in again. Assuming there is an ADFS hard drive (CF card in the datacentre). Do:

Code: Select all

*disc
*drive 0
*.
Check that this is the correct disc

Code: Select all

*adfs
*cdir image
*dir image
*xfer disc adfs
*ram
*drive 0
*xfer adfs ram
*export 0 image.ssd
Make copious use of CTRL-BREAK, especially if something goes wrong.
It might be possible to skip some of the intermediate steps, but when I tried to do
*xfer tape ram
it didn't work, though maybe it is possible and I was doing something wrong.

What I am not clear on then is what to do if you can catalogue the disc, but there is an error when reading files. Is it possible to do a copy of the parts of the disc that work while skipping the parts that don't? I think the disc controller automatically retries a few times on error, so I suspect that if there is an error retrying the command is likely to fail again.

Does anyone have suggestions for improvements to the procedure above?

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 10:06 pm
by pau1ie
Oh yes, sorry all the recordings I did are left only, as I only had left plugged in. I think it would have been possible to mirror them, but I got fed up with the manual. I hope it doesn't cause too many problems.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 11:10 pm
by Coeus
pau1ie wrote:
lurkio wrote:Can't get the audio file to load.
Yes, that is what I found, and is why I uploaded the audio. I copied the audio in the hope that someone clever could get something out of it.
if it played too slowly, but at a consistent speed, it would be possible to resample it to get it back to the right speed, i.e. so the frequencies are correct. Correcting for speed varations would be much harder. One possible first step might to to open it in an audio editor with a spectrum analyser plugin. What I'd hope to see if two bug peaks are what should be 1200 and 2400 so by working out what actual frequency these have ended up with it should be possible to come up with an adjustment.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sun May 14, 2017 11:20 pm
by davidb
Coeus wrote:if it played too slowly, but at a consistent speed, it would be possible to resample it to get it back to the right speed, i.e. so the frequencies are correct. Correcting for speed varations would be much harder. One possible first step might to to open it in an audio editor with a spectrum analyser plugin. What I'd hope to see if two bug peaks are what should be 1200 and 2400 so by working out what actual frequency these have ended up with it should be possible to come up with an adjustment.
I think it's inconsistently slow, which makes it harder to read - it sounds awful to listen to! Having said that, the waveform looks very clean, so there's hope for this one. :)

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 8:47 am
by pau1ie
davidb wrote:I think it's inconsistently slow
Yes, I think it starts off OK and eventually stops. I imagine it is horrible.
billcarr2005 wrote: I've managed to get this working

Thanks, this really cheered me up!
lurkio wrote: I do seem to have got the audio playing into my Master now
Again, thanks, this was really encouraging.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 9:44 am
by leenew
There are programs that can "straighten out" bad audio.
If anyone uses the expensive DJ/Producer app Ableton, this does it by looking at the peaks and then making them equidistant I think.
It is used for making old live recorings (where the drummer did not keep consistent time) more friendly for mixing, but whether it would work for beeb audio is anyone's guess!

Lee.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 4:03 pm
by CMcDougall
^Lee, already got that Sony Soundforge prog too, it's utter pish for to re-press RARE LOL PRICE vinyl, hence why we use WaveLab6 (again ive got all the whites /illegal presses /DJ Promos that went no further from BITD :mrgreen: ) & back now on everyones wheels of steel Technics SL1200s =; 8-[

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 4:54 pm
by CMcDougall
Trivial Pursuit data tapes now as .CSW, seem to show up on TapeControl/s

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 7:26 pm
by CMcDougall
sydney wrote:I've got Wolfpack on the pc too just not had time to upload
did it work Simon? can't wait to fly another plane! (if it is this type of game as per DocSoft usual...)

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Mon May 15, 2017 7:32 pm
by sydney
CMcDougall wrote:
sydney wrote:I've got Wolfpack on the pc too just not had time to upload
did it work Simon? can't wait to fly another plane! (if it is this type of game as per DocSoft usual...)
It is on my mother's pc and it's back at her house so it'll have to wait until the weekend before I get it.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 1:02 pm
by sydney
At my mothers house now so here is wolfpack.
I think it's only WOLF and WOLFPACK - Ignore the 3 other files.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 3:30 pm
by CMcDougall
^hope she made you a nice cup of tea :D

I had my mum's car in bits the other week, seems car dealers don't actually service cars at all, so done all the usual for £30 , I even got a biscuit with my cup of tea for doing it 8) (now it's like a RS turbo, as garage ddone nothing for 4yr!)

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Tue May 23, 2017 6:25 pm
by CMcDougall
mum just replied to an email :
"The car is going much better now, I didn't even notice I was doing 80 on the way home from Asda on Friday." \:D/

Wolf Pac III , has lots of *FX15,1 & *FX9,40 etc that all need taken out to so can run from disc, but it also makes MCode from &D00 to &DFC
so put it back to tape:
wolf.jpg
in game
so to go:
*TAPE
PAGE=&E00
CH.""

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 12:26 am
by lurkio
Thanks, sydney and Col!
CMcDougall wrote:Wolf Pac III , has lots of *FX15,1 & *FX9,40 etc that all need taken out to so can run from disc
Eh? I thought *FX15,1 cleared the current input buffer. And *FX9 changed the blink rate of flashing colours or summat?

Here's a transfer to .SSD disc-image:
  • WOLFPACK.ssd.zip
    .SSD DFS disc-image of Wolfpack
    (7.96 KiB) Downloaded 56 times
Play online:
:idea:

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 2:32 pm
by davidb
After some messing around trying to adjust the speed of West Quest, here's the UEF and a screenshot. No guarantees about the UEF, of course, but it appears to work.

Can you guess which famous game this is a clone of, children? Here's a hint. ;)

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 3:46 pm
by lurkio
davidb wrote:After some messing around trying to adjust the speed of West Quest, here's the UEF and a screenshot. No guarantees about the UEF, of course, but it appears to work.
This is great! Thanks, David. Did you make a constant speed adjustment or did the speed vary across different sections of the audio?

:?:

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 8:17 pm
by davidb
lurkio wrote:This is great! Thanks, David. Did you make a constant speed adjustment or did the speed vary across different sections of the audio?
I initially tried to use various tricks to convince my program that pulses of 1200 Hz and 2400 Hz could be wider or narrower than normal, then I tried playing the audio at a faster rate than it was recorded at. These were only partially successful, but some blocks steadfastly refused to load. When I tried to transfer block 2B, I realised that I would have to deal with a variable playback rate.

What I did in the end was to change the playback speed when encountering high tones to gradually try and compensate for the mismatch between the frequency being read and an ideal wave at 2400 Hz. I'm actually surprised that it worked! :shock:

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 8:51 pm
by leenew
Impressed! =D>

Lee.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed May 24, 2017 8:58 pm
by davidb
Thanks. :) It only worked because the signal was so clean - kudos to everyone who had something to do with that. :D

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 8:31 am
by pau1ie
Thanks davidb, this is amazing. I really thought the only hope was to try and get a better recording of the cassette! Can you share how you did what you describe? Do you have some expensive professional audio processing software, or can it be done cheaply?

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Thu May 25, 2017 10:45 am
by davidb
I used a tool I wrote called recordUEF.py which really needs me to add more comments because I tend to forget what it's doing at times. :roll:

The tool is really simple in principle, but not quite to simple to use as it should be. What it does is try to filter out frequencies above and below the two frequencies used to represent data, clamps the resulting waveform to be between values of 0 and 1, then tries to figure out the spacing and widths of the pulses that it sees. The inspiration for this came from this article, which actually takes a simpler approach.

What I did yesterday was to look at one of the blocks in Westquest in Audacity and examine the spacing between peaks of high tone signal at different points in the block, finding that they differed quite a bit. I realised that it would probably be better if I changed my tool to check the frequency of the high tone periodically and compensate for variations by changing the time step between samples. So, if it "sees" high tone at 2200 Hz then it makes the time step smaller so that the frequency of the wave being read "increases" to 2400 Hz; if the tone was higher then it makes the time step larger, stretching out the wave. One side effect of this is that the tool loses track of the original time in the sample but I think I can fix this.

As I mentioned, the tool isn't easy to use, and the only cost is the time spent getting it to do what you want. You have to be comfortable with running it from the command line and tweaking the options. I also needed to use an audio editor to fix recordings of some old cassettes before feeding them to the tool because it doesn't handle glitches in the signal very well. :( But the Westquest audio was very clean, so that step wasn't required in this case. :)

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sat May 27, 2017 12:43 am
by richardtoohey
Thanks for sharing. =D>

I get the general principle of how this is meant to work but every time I try and really understand it, it dribbles out my ears. :oops: ](*,)

So when I get that nice quiet day, all to myself #-o :roll: :-({|= I'll have a look at the Python code.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Sat May 27, 2017 10:04 am
by davidb
I'm not sure my code is a great way to decode the data, though as long as I can get something off cassettes then I'm happy. :) I'm still considering reimplementing the Electron's cassette hardware in software at some point.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 7:26 pm
by lurkio
Hi again. Resurrecting this thread to post the list of games/software that still need archiving:

Code: Select all

STILL NEEDED:

TITLE,PUBLISHER,Format,Box,ID,Notes
Bonding,BBC Soft,Cassette,SW165,CH40177,
Brainwaves Quiz,Arnold Wheaton,Cassette,SW143,CH34695,
Butterflies / Putting,Unknown EDUCATIONAL,,,CH39076,
Cinderella,Selective,,,CH39092,
Clever Clogs Computer Tutor,Argus Press,Cassette,SW100,CH21080,
Exhibition Six,Kansas,Cassette,SW089,CH21159,
Exploring Adventures (Tape),Duckworth,Cassette,SW150,CH36632,
Fishing Game,Cambridge,Disk,SW098,CH21225,
Game Core,BBC Soft,Cassette,SW047,CH5964,
Hereward The Rebel,Fernleaf,Disk,SW099,CH20892,
Invasion,Argus Press,Cassette,SW025,CH40601,
Kingdom Of Helior,Longman,Disk,SW098,CH20817,
Map Zap,Duckworth,Disk,SW161,CH40278,
Monsters & Magic,ISP,Cassette,,CH48100,
Mystery of the Java Star,SHARDS Software Ltd,Cassette,,CH4379,There is only one UEF online and it's faulty. Only require one file: "WITCH". It's all BASIC and no protection.
PenDown Adventure Writer,Logotron,Disk,,CH39055,Need photos of manual
Personal Quiz,Colisoft,Cassette,SW063,CH18735,
Quest Adventures + Creator,AUCBE,Disk,SW107,CH21781,
Railroder,Stell,Cassette,SW071,CH19330,Railroader
Space Fighter,Program Power,Cassette,SW016,CH21826,
Whispy Wood,Resource,,,CH48096,

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

RECOVERED AT THE LAST CAM ABUG:
Bee Beater,Sulis,,????,
Copter Dogfight,Micro User,Cassette,SW162,
Cosmos,Kansas,Cassette,SW162,Task Force – Cosmos – Demolish combo tape
Cricket Averages,South Coast Software,Cassette,SW085,
Demolish,Kansas,Cassette,SW162,Task Force – Cosmos – Demolish combo tape
Games Of Logic (different version),Golem,Cassette,SW164,
Lost In The Labyrinth,Stack,Cassette,SW031,
Mathemagic Land,LTS,Cassette,SW164,
"Storyline, The",Daco Software,Cassette,????,CH40402
Trivial Pursuit – Baby Boomer,Domark,Cassette (and Disk),SW031,
Trivial Pursuit – Standard,Domark,Disk,SW031,Genus Edition?
Trivial Pursuit – Young Players,Domark,Cassette (and Disk),SW031,
Wolfpack,Doctor Soft,Cassette,SW085,
West Quest,PASE,Cassette,SW099,

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ALREADY ON BBCMICRO.CO.UK SOMEHOW:
Detective,ASP,Cassette,SW085,
Doom Run / Backgammon,Unknown,,????,
Leisure Software,Gemini,Disk,SW137, [See "Traditional Games" on bbmicro.co.uk]
Play your cards right,LWT,,????,

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

LEE SAYS WE DON'T NEED TO LOOK FOR THESE ANY MORE FOR SOME REASON:
Gold Collection,US Gold,Disk / Cassette,,CH18762,SECOND PRIORITY
Snapple Hopper,MacMillan,Disk,SW160,CH38955,
Anyone able to help archive these rare and valuable :^o missing titles?

:?:

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:50 pm
by leenew
It would be good to get some of these titles archived.
Is anyone taking any equipment like last time?
I am determined to get down to a Cambridge ABug soon.
Work always seems to scupper my attempts.
Next time.. Next time....

Lee

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:55 pm
by flaxcottage
I shall have some archiving equipment with me. I was hoping to archive lots of educational stuff. :D

I shall have a cassette recorder so if the tapes are not protected I should be able to get the code saved to my Datacentre.

Re: The Cambridge ABug software hacking/archiving thread

Posted: Thu Sep 06, 2018 5:09 pm
by lurkio
flaxcottage wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:55 pm
I shall have some archiving equipment with me. I was hoping to archive lots of educational stuff. :D I shall have a cassette recorder so if the tapes are not protected I should be able to get the code saved to my Datacentre.
Thanks, John. Good luck!

[-o<