Econet Expansion Rom

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AndyF
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Econet Expansion Rom

Post by AndyF » Mon Sep 03, 2018 11:21 pm

Just after a bit more information on this if possible please.

I'm not 100% sure its useful if you have ANFS , perhaps it was intended at the time to sit alongside say NFS 3.4 or 3.6 ?

Output from from *H. NETEXP
>*H. NETEXP
CONT <st.list>
FATAL <st.list>
HALT <st.list>
PEEK <stn>;<dst.ad>;<len>;<src.ad>
POKE <st.list>;<src.ad>;<len>;<dst.ad>
PROTECT <P> <J> <U> <O> <H>
ROFF
SEND <st.list>;<text>
SENDPROG <st.list>;(<page>)
SYS
VIEW <st.list>
VIEWF <st.list>
WHERE <stn>
Not relevant but output from *H. so you can see what I'm running the 'B with
>*H.
DFS 2.26
DFS
UTILS
SRAM 1.05
SRAM

Advanced Disc Toolkit 2.00
ADT

Advanced DFS 1.33
ADFS

ADFS Utilities 1.10
ADU

Advanced NFS 4.18
Econet Station 254
Net
Utils
Network Expansion Ver. 1.20

HELP (*H) 1.2
HLP

Graphics Extension ROM 1.20
Graphics
Sprites

OS 1.20
Source / bit more info > https://www.heyrick.co.uk/econet/eprom.html

I am really just after any more information on it, simply for curiosity's sake. :)
Last edited by AndyF on Mon Sep 03, 2018 11:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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philb
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Re: Econet Expansion Rom

Post by philb » Sun Sep 09, 2018 7:03 pm

I'd never heard of this before but, from the list of commands, it looks like it's mostly a way of getting a convenient command line interface to the econet "immediate operations". So you can halt a remote machine (and tell it to continue again), read and write its memory, force it to execute a BRK, etc. I imagine it would probably work fine with ANFS.

*VIEW probably copies the screen from a remote machine, there was a standard utility of the same name.

*SEND sounds like it might be a bit like *NOTIFY (inserts a message into keyboard buffer on remote machine) but supporting more than one machine at a time

*PROTECT possibly a moral equivalent to *PROT(EX) but I'm not sure what P/J/U/O/H mean.

Not entirely obvious how *SENDPROG is very different from *POKE

I think *ROFF is in ANFS already, a second copy probably not all that useful.

I don't know offhand what *SYS, *VIEWF and *WHERE would do, experimentation maybe required :)

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jgharston
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Re: Econet Expansion Rom

Post by jgharston » Mon Sep 10, 2018 7:18 pm

I expect that:
*CONT/HALT/PEEK/POKE send an immediate action to the list of stations.
*FATAL sends a Remote Fatal Error - the call is used by *REMOTE to get the remote station to the command prompt.
*PROTECT is *PROT and named PROTECT to bypass the PROT command in ANFS. PJUOH are probably Peek Jump User OSProc Halt.
Dunno what the difference with *ROFF is, all NFSs have *ROFF as otherwise there's no way to terminate a REMOTE.
*SEND does look like a multi-station *NOTIFY
*SENDPROG probably sends memory from local PAGE to local TOP to remote PAGE. I wrote a *GIVE to do this, and the opposite, *TAKE.
*SYS probably sends a SYS immediate operation - generates a Net Event, similar to CONT, FATAL, etc.
*VIEW will be *VIEW - though I can't see how you'd *VIEW a list of stations.
*VIEWF - F must stand for something - fast?
*WHERE - I had something like this that TYPEd an entry from a system file that listed where each station on the network was located. So, *WHERE 50 would display something like:
50: MARK: Library
and *WHERE MARK would show something like:
48: MARK: Library
50: MARK: Library
82: MARK: Prep lab

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.32
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2020
>_

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AndyF
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Re: Econet Expansion Rom

Post by AndyF » Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:02 pm

Thanks both, appreciate your thoughts on it. :)

I've not yet had chance to sit down and (properly) try it out yet, likely at the weekend I guess. I did have a quick look at it the other day but not to any decent degree.

I can see what is said about some command duplication, I can only really think that maybe (pure speculation here) it was originally created for very early/elderly versions of NFS perhaps, either that or the 'Expansion' offers some increased functionality. The former seems more likely to me, hmm.
Last edited by AndyF on Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:06 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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jgharston
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Re: Econet Expansion Rom

Post by jgharston » Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:37 pm

AndyF wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:02 pm
I can see what is said about some command duplication, I can only really think that maybe (pure speculation here) it was originally created for very early/elderly versions of NFS perhaps, either that or the 'Expansion' offers some increased functionality. The former seems more likely to me, hmm.
It really should be called 'extension', "Econet Expansion" would be inserting the ALDC, buffers, logic and NFS ROM. However, all NFSes had *ROFF in ROM, as otherwise it's impossible to terminate a REMOTE.

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.32
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2020
>_

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jgharston
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Re: Econet Expansion Rom

Post by jgharston » Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:04 pm

Doing a bit of investigation, the command table is seperate from the *HELP list. There are some commands not listed, *CLIST, *ERROR, *MOTAN and *STATION.

*CLIST lists all the commands.
*ERROR seems to print some sort of status, I just get 171 here.
*STATION is the same as ANFS's *HELP STATION - it displays the station number
*MOTAN displays a funny little message

and of the others
*SYS displays System Information: an attempt at today's date, the file server version, then an incorrectly coded attempt to list the file server disks and logged-on users.

*ROFF simply jumps to OSBYTE &35 - exactly the same as the NFS *ROFF.

Plus, the ROM title says "... Ver. 1.20", but the ROM version string says "1.00"

And the *HELP display is misformatted.
Last edited by jgharston on Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.32
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2020
>_

User avatar
jgharston
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Re: Econet Expansion Rom

Post by jgharston » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:48 pm

I've patched the ROM image so the *HELP display is correct, and *SYS displays the date correctly:
http://mdfs.net/System/ROMs/Econet/

I'll pop it on my list of things to go through the disassembly and work out what it's doing what it's supposed to be doing.

Code: Select all

$ bbcbasic
PDP11 BBC BASIC IV Version 0.32
(C) Copyright J.G.Harston 1989,2005-2020
>_

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