Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

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Buzby
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Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by Buzby » Mon May 06, 2019 11:02 pm

Hi all
I'm new here, please be gentle with me!

I have a BBC Master and loads of my own BBC programs I wrote back in the 80s on 5.25" floppy disk - I would really like to get these onto my PC so I can run them with BeebEm.
I have bought a MicroSPI microSD card based board + Smart SPI ROM from RetroClinic which I have attached to the User Port and I can successfully run games from the BEEB.MMB file on it.

I have acquired MMBImager and DFSImager on the PC so once I get the MMB file back to my PC I believe I will be able to extract the SSD image from it. However, I'm completely stumped about how to copy games from the BBC's floppy drive to the Micro SPI SD card in the first place. The help guide for the SmartSPI software talks about DUTILS but none of them seem to explain how to copy a floppy disk to the "virtual" disks available on the SD card.

Is it possible? Can you help before my BBC Master / floppy disk drive gives up the ghost entirely?

Thanks in advance
Buzby

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rmbrowngr
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by rmbrowngr » Tue May 07, 2019 4:57 am

I don’t have one of these devices but I would think you should create some blank disk images in the Beeb.mmb first. Mount your physical floppy disk in one drive and mount a blank disk from the smart spi in a different drive and use the standard commands of dfs\adfs to copy files from one drive to the other. E.g. commands *Backup or *copy.
Last edited by rmbrowngr on Tue May 07, 2019 5:09 am, edited 2 times in total.
Richard B
Acorn Electrons issue 4 and issue 6 with Master RAM Board, Acorn Plus 1, AP6, AP5, Pegasus 400, BeebSCSI, Gotek, Raspberry Pi 2nd Processor, GoSDC MBE with Elk2GoSDC and Cart2GoSDC.
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danielj
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by danielj » Tue May 07, 2019 7:06 am

There is some software to do that iirc... Someone will no doubt show up shortly and say what it is.. The issue you're going to have is they're both sort of the same filing system. Have you tried asking Mark (Retroclinic) - he always provides very good support for his products?

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flaxcottage
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by flaxcottage » Tue May 07, 2019 8:04 am

This is the major weakness of the SPI system I discovered. The filing systems have overlapping workspace.

From experience one can manually copy files by issuing;

*DISC
LOAD "FILENAME"
Break
OLD
*CARD
SAVE "FILENAME"

or use *LOAD/*SAVE

The turboMMC version from IFEL has a copy ROM to do this job but it does not work with the SPI flavour. :(
- John

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DutchAcorn
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by DutchAcorn » Tue May 07, 2019 1:07 pm

You can also download the MMFS rom for the Master and run that from sideways ram. MMFS is an alternative file system for the same interface.

Use *MMFS to use, it will work instead of Smart SPI.

The tools disk (image) included with mmfs includes a tool called imtod that dumps the disk image to the physical disk.

See here: https://github.com/hoglet67/MMFS/releases

Please read the documentation carefully so that you download the correct version for a real Master 128 computer.

Edit: it is the U/MAMMFS version you need for the Master 128.
Last edited by DutchAcorn on Tue May 07, 2019 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Paul

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flaxcottage
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by flaxcottage » Tue May 07, 2019 3:44 pm

Now I didn't know that. :shock:

Thanks for the tip. =D>
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lurkio
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by lurkio » Tue May 07, 2019 5:54 pm

DutchAcorn wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 1:07 pm
You can also download the MMFS rom for the Master and run that from sideways ram. MMFS is an alternative file system for the same interface.

Use *MMFS to use, it will work instead of Smart SPI.

The tools disk (image) included with mmfs includes a tool called imtod that dumps the disk image to the physical disk.
I can confirm I’ve used this method and it works well. imtod is a BASIC program (I think), and it’s particularly useful.

Maybe first *UNPLUG the SPI ROM and do Ctrl-Break, just to be sure SPI’s not active.

:idea:

EDIT: Actually, isn’t it “dtoim” (disc to image) that Buzby needs, rather than “imtod” (image to disc)? Or does the one program transfer in both directions? I can’t quite remember.
Last edited by lurkio on Tue May 07, 2019 5:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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DutchAcorn
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by DutchAcorn » Tue May 07, 2019 6:54 pm

lurkio wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 5:54 pm
DutchAcorn wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 1:07 pm
You can also download the MMFS rom for the Master and run that from sideways ram. MMFS is an alternative file system for the same interface.

Use *MMFS to use, it will work instead of Smart SPI.

The tools disk (image) included with mmfs includes a tool called imtod that dumps the disk image to the physical disk.
I can confirm I’ve used this method and it works well. imtod is a BASIC program (I think), and it’s particularly useful.

Maybe first *UNPLUG the SPI ROM and do Ctrl-Break, just to be sure SPI’s not active.

:idea:

EDIT: Actually, isn’t it “dtoim” (disc to image) that Buzby needs, rather than “imtod” (image to disc)? Or does the one program transfer in both directions? I can’t quite remember.
No, you are right, it's IDTOM, I misread Buzby's request. They are separate basic programs.
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Buzby
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by Buzby » Tue May 07, 2019 8:03 pm

Hi
Thanks for all the replies - I will take a look at MMFS when I get a chance and report back!

Buzby

Buzby
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Re: Copy BBC disk to PC using Smart SPI

Post by Buzby » Fri May 17, 2019 10:38 pm

Evening all.

Finally got round to trying it out, and you lot are stars! A few head scratches at the beginning - turns out IMTOD doesn't format the disk it is writing to first and the copy of DUTILS included with MMFS didn't include the *DFORM command, but once I'd sorted that out it was all pretty plain sailing. I have just run a game I wrote on my BBC Micro in 1985 on my Windows 10 PC via BeebEm! Fantastic.
If only I could say the same about the 5.25" floppies - some of them just don't want to be read. Does anyone have any ideas about what to do about fixing disk faults?

Thanks again

Buzby

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