Commstar II

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Andy1979
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Commstar II

Post by Andy1979 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:04 am

As you may have seen on 'Cheap wifi modem' thread, I've been using Commstar on my Master Compact to "dial in" to @John_Newcombe's excellent Telstar viewdata system, using @danielj's modem design.

It works well, but I've found a few incompatibilities between Commstar and the Master Compact - it doesn't like ADFS and the keyboard mapping is odd.

I've also got the ROM image for Commstar II (v2.40). It operates very differently, with the main terminal program accessed via '*CTERM' and the viewdata side of things accessed via '*CVIEW(baud)'.

*CTERM works great as an ASCII terminal, and is quite intuitive, but switching into '*CVIEW' doesn't display any data. I can't seem to find how I alter the baud settings in viewdata mode. I've tried *CVIEW(2400) and *CVIEW 2400.

I've already found this thread (viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5798&p=54167&hilit= ... +ii#p54167) and looked at the PDF manual for Commstar v1, but I'm still stuck :(

Does anyone have a manual for Commstar II, or know a way around this?

Alternatively, are there any other terminal packages with configurable baud settings for Viewdata? (*danielj has already tried Communitel, but it expects 1200/75, so won't work without modification to the code).

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danielj
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Re: Commstar II

Post by danielj » Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:28 am

I have a plan for communitel but it'll be a couple of weeks coming. In the meantime, if someone does have the commstar ii manual it'd be really useful as I had the same issues!

d.

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lcww1
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Re: Commstar II

Post by lcww1 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:45 am

Found this - https://www.4corn.co.uk/archive/showpdf ... r%20II.pdf - not the manual, and possibly you’ve already seen this, but it does look as though it contains some clues.


I see that the CCH have Commstar II in their collection http://www.computinghistory.org.uk/det/ ... mmStar-II/ - I may be visiting CCH soon to scan the fabled Econet L4FS manager’s guide, so if nothing else turns up in the next week or so, I might be able to get a scan of the manual at CCH.

Andy1979
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Re: Commstar II

Post by Andy1979 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:18 am

lcww1 wrote:
Fri Jun 01, 2018 10:45 am
Found this - https://www.4corn.co.uk/archive/showpdf ... r%20II.pdf - not the manual, and possibly you’ve already seen this, but it does look as though it contains some clues.


I see that the CCH have Commstar II in their collection http://www.computinghistory.org.uk/det/ ... mmStar-II/ - I may be visiting CCH soon to scan the fabled Econet L4FS manager’s guide, so if nothing else turns up in the next week or so, I might be able to get a scan of the manual at CCH.
Thanks for that. The configuration files that document discusses sound potentially useful, but can't seem to find any communication options at all in Viewdata mode.

A scan of the manual would be amazing. Have been contemplating a visit to CCH myself - From July I'll be commuting to Cambridge once a week or so, which makes it more likely I'll find the time.

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jgharston
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Re: Commstar II

Post by jgharston » Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:44 am

Back in the 1990s I wrote XTerm and I was using it to send/fetch email via Arcade until about 2010.
f2=set baud rate, f7=MODE 7, f8=MODE 0

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.25
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2015
>_

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lcww1
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Re: Commstar II

Post by lcww1 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 9:35 pm

So, I've finally got myself organised, and I'll be visiting the CCH later this month, on the weekend of the 23rd/24th. I've contacted the very helpful CCH people, and I'll be scanning the Commstar II manual, if it hasn't materialised by then, along with the L4FS network manager's guide.

I think there'll be scope to scan one or two other things at that time, so if anyone has something in particular that they'd like scanned from the CCH collection, then do let me know, as the CCH need some advance notice to extract documents from their archive.

Andy1979
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Re: Commstar II

Post by Andy1979 » Sun Jun 03, 2018 4:46 am

lcww1 wrote:
Sat Jun 02, 2018 9:35 pm
So, I've finally got myself organised, and I'll be visiting the CCH later this month, on the weekend of the 23rd/24th. I've contacted the very helpful CCH people, and I'll be scanning the Commstar II manual, if it hasn't materialised by then, along with the L4FS network manager's guide.
That’s fantastic - thank you for going to the trouble =D>

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lcww1
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Re: Commstar II

Post by lcww1 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:29 pm

Scanned PACE Micro Technology Commstar II manual - it's been scanned to PNG at 300dpi - it's just a load of files zipped into a folder in my Dropbox at the moment:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/uizafkyq5fs6z ... I.zip?dl=0

Share & Enjoy!

Edit: In my haste, I forgot to add the following: Many thanks indeed to the generous and helpful Staff of the Centre for Computing History for their kind assistance. There would be no scan without the CCH.
Last edited by lcww1 on Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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lcww1
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Re: Commstar II

Post by lcww1 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:03 pm


Andy1979
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Re: Commstar II

Post by Andy1979 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:06 pm

lcww1 wrote:
Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:29 pm
Scanned PACE Micro Technology Commstar II manual - it's been scanned to PNG at 300dpi - it's just a load of files zipped into a folder in my Dropbox at the moment:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/uizafkyq5fs6z ... I.zip?dl=0

Share & Enjoy!
That's brilliant, thanks so much for going to the trouble. I'm out of the country at the moment - look forward to having a play when I get back next weekend.

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lcww1
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Re: Commstar II

Post by lcww1 » Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:12 pm

No problem Andy! I hope this manual proves useful....

Also, I'll just note for reference that the Commstar II rom (various versions) may be found here - http://archive.retro-kit.co.uk/bbc.nvg. ... index.html

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danielj
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Re: Commstar II

Post by danielj » Sun Jun 24, 2018 9:27 pm

Great work :D - seems it's not possible to use the viewdata terminal with anything other than 7E1 - who ever thought that was a good idea?!

d.

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