How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

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flaxcottage
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How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Wed May 22, 2019 8:59 pm

Here is a problem that has me stumped.

I have a new, unregistered floppy disc from Resource for the Archimedes Touch Window screen. The disc will verify with no errors. The disc will backup apparently OK but the backup copy will not register. The software keeps asking for the original 'master' disc to be put in the drive.

I have used several disc copiers. They appear to have cloned the disc but the clone will not register.

OmniFlop will make a disc image with no problem but the image is not recognised as the 'master' disc.

What is going on? How can this 'master disc' be cloned so that the clone will be recognised and register?

I could register the disc and then that can be used on any machine I have but it will have to be THAT disc. I can only install to HDD on the machine on which I registered the 'master'.

I want to archive the disc to preserve it but at the moment I cannot. Any ideas?

I have used Kryoflux to make a Stream File copy. That cannot be written back to a real floppy so that makes Kryoflux as much use as a chocolate fireguard here (or am I missing something?).
- John

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danielj
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by danielj » Wed May 22, 2019 9:09 pm

You can write a kryoflux stream back to floppy. Whether it works or not is a different issue, often down to the drive... If you pop the stream files somewhere I can have a look and see what I think is going on?

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Wed May 22, 2019 10:50 pm

Thanks, Daniel. I'll put them on my website and let you know where. It'll be tomorrow now.

Problem is with my version it gives an error message when trying to write the stream back. :?
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by steve3000 » Wed May 22, 2019 11:57 pm

This is actually quite difficult.

Because, it is very easy to create a protected 'master' disc which fools RISC OS and appears to backup ok on the Archimedes, but the backup doesn't work because it misses out critical hidden data used to store registration details etc. The problem is that the RISC OS backup code only copies sectors which are registered as containing file data on them (try backing up a blank disc...it's very fast!). So the registration details could simply be hidden on a sector not linked to any catalogue entry.

More rigorous software copiers can backup all data on every sector of a standard ADFS disc, avoiding the above problem. But there are still fairly simple ways of fooling many of these too - by using non-standard sector sizes.

Later Archimedes with the 82C710/711 controller were very limited in what protected discs they could copy, but if you have an older Archimedes with a 1772 floppy controller, there was a copier called !PiRat iirc, which was the best copier I ever saw on the Archimedes (but sadly I have long since lost my copy of this :(...If anyone has this, I'd be very interested to have a try of it again, to see if it was as good as I recall...!). However even this could be fooled by some more complex tricks like placing a large sector header within a small sector and reading the larger sector in order to over-read the end of the small sector...and therefore access hidden data between sectors... This type of protection method could never be copied (or created) on the Archimedes because the 1772 disc controller could not generate the correct format layout.

The easiest way to copy this sort of problem Master disc bitd was to find someone with an Amiga, and use Xcopy... These days though, this type of disc should be absolutely no problem for Kryoflux, so you're on the right track ;)

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by vanpeebles » Thu May 23, 2019 7:43 am

Investigator III was great 8)

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Thu May 23, 2019 8:33 am

The Touch Window Kryoflux data stream archive is here - www.flaxcottage.com/riscos/touchwindow.zip

I have !PiRat somewhere. I remember using that to clone an educational title.

Investigator III is on my hunting list, thanks. :D
Last edited by flaxcottage on Thu May 23, 2019 8:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Thu May 23, 2019 11:53 am

Now here's a thing...

Tried !Rat (!Pirat) on my A5000 last night and it crashed out and wouldn't copy the Touch Window disk. Copied the program to my A3000 and it worked perfectly making a virgin 'Master' disk which then would register to my A3000. :D

Is this because the A3000 has an 800K drive and the A5000 has a 1.6Mb drive?

Anyway, !Rat reported Track 19, Head 0, Sector 25 Size 1 the data overflows the index. !Rat seems to be able to copy the disk OK so that is one worry sorted. I still have the problem with making a downloadable archive. It is looking like I shall need to hack the Runimage file which is probably compiled C. :?
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by johnkenyon » Thu May 23, 2019 12:24 pm

flaxcottage wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 11:53 am
Now here's a thing...

Tried !Rat (!Pirat) on my A5000 last night and it crashed out and wouldn't copy the Touch Window disk. Copied the program to my A3000 and it worked perfectly making a virgin 'Master' disk which then would register to my A3000. :D

Is this because the A3000 has an 800K drive and the A5000 has a 1.6Mb drive?
No - A3000 has 1772, A5000 has a 82C710/711 (PC style) multifunction I/O device, and steve3000 has already said:
steve3000 wrote:
Wed May 22, 2019 11:57 pm
Later Archimedes with the 82C710/711 controller were very limited in what protected discs they could copy, but if you have an older Archimedes with a 1772 floppy controller, there was a copier called !PiRat iirc,
Looks like you have proved his memory to be correct.

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by danielj » Thu May 23, 2019 12:37 pm

So, I was just going to say, track 19 on side 0 has a misnumbered extra sector :D - > adf images won't work for that. I'd suggest converting it to HFE which will work with flashfloppy, and making the kryoflux stream available means that people can recreate the original disk if they so desire?

(I should also say, the HxC floppy emulator software is excellent for looking at what's going on on protected discs, you can see more than you can in the kryoflux software and it loads the stream files directly).
TouchWindowTrack19.JPG
d.
Last edited by danielj on Thu May 23, 2019 12:45 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Thu May 23, 2019 2:21 pm

johnkenyon wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 12:24 pm
flaxcottage wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 11:53 am
Now here's a thing...

Tried !Rat (!Pirat) on my A5000 last night and it crashed out and wouldn't copy the Touch Window disk. Copied the program to my A3000 and it worked perfectly making a virgin 'Master' disk which then would register to my A3000. :D

Is this because the A3000 has an 800K drive and the A5000 has a 1.6Mb drive?
No - A3000 has 1772, A5000 has a 82C710/711 (PC style) multifunction I/O device, and steve3000 has already said:
steve3000 wrote:
Wed May 22, 2019 11:57 pm
Later Archimedes with the 82C710/711 controller were very limited in what protected discs they could copy, but if you have an older Archimedes with a 1772 floppy controller, there was a copier called !PiRat iirc,
Looks like you have proved his memory to be correct.
I have my uses then. :lol:
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Thu May 23, 2019 2:23 pm

I'll have a look at that, Daniel, thanks.

One is never too old to learn new tricks. :D
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by steve3000 » Thu May 23, 2019 5:19 pm

flaxcottage wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 11:53 am
Tried !Rat (!Pirat) on my A5000 last night and it crashed out and wouldn't copy the Touch Window disk. Copied the program to my A3000 and it worked perfectly making a virgin 'Master' disk which then would register to my A3000. :D
Ah that's great to hear, glad it worked :)
johnkenyon wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 12:24 pm

Looks like you have proved his memory to be correct.
And I'm glad you did :) Memorys are amazing...thinking about it, probably the last time I recall seeing/using !PiRat was on the school A3000, which would make it no more recently than about 1993...

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by lcww1 » Thu May 23, 2019 6:46 pm

flaxcottage wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 8:33 am
I have !PiRat somewhere. I remember using that to clone an educational title.

Investigator III is on my hunting list, thanks. :D
Any chance of uploading !Rat to the forum? Sounds like a handy thing to have around....

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by richw » Thu May 23, 2019 8:18 pm

My memory could be terrible, but from what I recall of PiRat it was just a fancy front-end to the NVCS/Archive disk copier utility. I used that to duplicate loads of key disks back in the day.

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Thu May 23, 2019 8:23 pm

lcww1 wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 6:46 pm
flaxcottage wrote:
Thu May 23, 2019 8:33 am
I have !PiRat somewhere. I remember using that to clone an educational title.

Investigator III is on my hunting list, thanks. :D
Any chance of uploading !Rat to the forum? Sounds like a handy thing to have around....
No problem. I'll put it on my RISCOS archive and post a link.
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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Thu May 23, 2019 9:18 pm

!PiRAT is now on my archive site;

http://www.flaxcottage.com/RISCOS/Applications.asp

It is available in two versions - an ADF image file which can be converted to a real image using OmniFlop and a zip file which can be unzipped directly onto the Archimedes. Right click the link to download.

This will probably work with A3xx, A4xx and A5xx series computers and has been tested with the A3000.
- John

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by lcww1 » Thu May 23, 2019 9:48 pm

Fantastic! Many thanks :D

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Re: How to clone a 'master' disc on Archimedes

Post by flaxcottage » Fri May 24, 2019 10:13 am

!PiRAT is also on the SkyFall compilation disc H24 along with some other disc duplicators.

It had been there for quite a long time. :oops:
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