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Author Topic: SymbOS (Read 231612 times)

Offline geco

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #990 on: 2021.December.18. 15:57:19 »
Cooool! 

Offline Prodatron

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #991 on: 2021.December.30. 23:39:14 »
SymbOS CPC & MSX & PCW & EP 3.1 has been released.


Exactly 2^2 years and 2^2 months after the last one we have finally a new full release of SymbOS. It's a very hardware focused one.


After SymbOS made platform independent software for Z80 systems in a modern multitasking environment in 2006 possible it is now introducing a new era of platform independent hardware expansions for 8bit systems as well - thanks to TMT Logic and Gflorez!


You can download it here:

http://www.symbos.org/download.htm



Release notes for 3.1 [30.12.2021]

Extensive hardware support

- Graphics9000 for CPC and EP: The V9990 based graphic card with its MSX origin, probably the most powerful one for 8bit systems, can be used on both the Amstrad CPC and the Enterprise 64/128 now, too. Resolutions of up to 1024x212 with 16 colours and fast graphic output is possible now on nearly all supported SymbOS platforms. This makes it possible to run about 50 different applications on three different platforms with this graphic card.
- SYMBiFACE 3 for CPC and EP: USB-mouse, realtime clock and USB memory stick with up to 2TB is supported directly in the operating system on both the Amstrad CPC and the Enterprise 64/128. Additional features of this extensive all-in-one hardware by TMT Logic can be used in specialized applications.
- PCW with uIDE and HxC direct access support: The Amstrad PCW is now able to access huge mass storage devices as well with sizes of up to 2TB. The uIDE8 interface by Jon B is supported for fast CF card access, which makes even video playback possible on the PCW. HxC direct SD card access is available as well.
- Graphics9000 with hardware mouse pointer: All G9K versions of SymbOS do now use the hardware cursor in bitmap mode, which makes a fast and flicker free mouse pointer possible.
- M4Board network RTC support: The NTP based Realtime clock of the M4Board is supported in SymbOS CPC.

Dynamic driver system for CPC and EP

- Hardware autodetection: During the booting process SymbOS CPC and EP is autodetecting all available and supported HID, RTC and mass storage hardware.
- Hardware autoselection: Available hardware will be autoselected with prioritisation of newer devices.
- CPC 1MB support: Memory expansions with 1MB or more are supported again. SymbOS will automatically switch to 1MB support during booting, if more than 576KB Ram are detected, so there is no need for a seperate version anymore.
- Minimal config for 128K systems: If SymbOS detects a system with only 128K, all additional features (extended desktop, screen saver, desktop background picture) will be deactivated automatically during booting. You will always have 31K or more free on your system.

SymAmp with advanced audio hardware support

- New driver system: A new driver-like system for including and managing hardware and sound module support has been added to SymAmp. All detected hardware is listed in a new dialogue window where you can select your prefered sound device.
- Enterprise 64/128 Dave AY emulation: The AY emulation by IstvanV and Geco is now official part of SymAmp and can play Soundtrakker 128, Starkos and PT3 modules with the Dave soundchip of the Enterprise 64/128.
- MP3 for nearly all platforms: MP3MSX and compatible sound cards (SE-ONE, SYMBiFACE 3) are now supported on the Amstrad CPC and Enterprise 64/128 as well.
- CPC PlayCity 6 channel Dual PSG: Finally we have PlayCity support integrated in the official release version of SymAmp.
- MSX Darky 6 channel Dual PSG: 6channel PT3s can be played on the MSX with the Darky catridge.
- PCW Dk'tronics AY board: SymAmp is now able to play Soundtrakker 128, Starkos and PT3 modules on the Amstrad PCW as well, if a Dk'tronics AY hardware expansion is connected.

Kernel improvements

- Memory management: The memory management has been optimized again. The system now searches for free transfer area space starting at the very end of the memory, when loading an application. This reduces memory fragmentation again.
- Relocation table handling: During loading an application the temporary relocation table is loaded to any free memory location, which can be in any 64K ram bank. This makes it possible to load applications which are using the full available 63K of one bank.

Graphics9000 fullscreen game mode

- P1 patternmode support: The Quigs IDE is now supporting screen mode P1, which provides two pattern layers, 127 sprites and up to 61 colours with a resolution of 256x212. Flappy Bird is the first game, which is using this and running on all supported platforms (Amstrad CPC, MSX, Enterprise 64/128)
- Graphics9000 interrupt handling: The kernel supports the handling of V9990 line interrupts. This can be used for enabling splitscreens in fullscreen games and will be supported by the Quigs IDE soon.

Desktop Manager

- Context menus: This new features allows an application to open a context menu at any place on the screen.
- Frame resizing and movement: The user can resize and move a dotted frame on the screen. This makes screen area selections possible.
- Modal window unclick events: The GUI sends an event, if the user is clicking outside of a modal window. This can be used for creating own complex dropdown menus.
- Transparent bitmaps: a new graphic control allows bitmaps with a transparent colour (0).
- CPC mode 1 textoutput speed: The speed of the textoutput routines has been increased on the Amstrad CPC in mode 1.

New applications since 3.0

- SymbOS E-Mail: The full functional E-Mail client is now available for SymbOS 3.1 (by EdoZ, using Quigs).
- Flappy Bird: This is the first game which is using the new Quigs IDE feature for creating fullscreen games on the Graphics9000 graphic card (by EdoZ & Trebmint, using Quigs).
- Sokoban: A very advanced implementation of the classic Sokoban game.
- ChessSym: The first chess application with a strong AI for SymbOS (by Trebmint, using Quigs).
- Doom: Play Doom in SymbOS - even multiple times! This 3D egoshooter has been ported from a TI-calculator to SymbOS (by zDoom team, NYYRIKKI, Prodatron)
- 2048: Another well-known game is now available for SymbOS as well (by Trebmint, using Quigs)
- DiskDumper: This dumps a complete floppy disc to a DSK file, used by Amstrad CPC emulators.
- VDP screen adjustment tool: Adjust the screen position and screen frequency of your MSX VDP or Graphics9000.
- Hexe: Simple Hex monitor and editor.

Miscellaneous

- Bug fixing: Bugs have been removed as usual, including the boot logo on the Amstrad CPC and PCW and the joystick handling on the Enterprise 64/128.


Offline Allf

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #992 on: 2021.December.31. 06:50:15 »
Beautiful New Year's gift. Thank You!

Offline geco

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #993 on: 2021.December.31. 20:14:40 »
Cool, Thank you very much for your great work :-) List of new features is huge also :-)

Online Zozosoft

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #994 on: 2021.December.31. 23:02:21 »
Thanks, very nice surprise! :smt038

Offline gflorez

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #995 on: 2021.December.31. 23:15:17 »
Great!

Now SF3 users can use Geco's trick on the SF3boot.Rom to launch a working SymbOS session from the USB. No more a wonderful SD cartridge is needed. Ah, and the USB mouse....

Offline Allf

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #996 on: 2022.January.01. 11:25:15 »
Quote
Great!
Now SF3 users can use Geco's trick on the SF3boot.Rom to launch a working SymbOS session from the USB. No more a wonderful SD cartridge is needed. Ah, and the USB mouse....
Unfortunately, getting an SD expander at a reasonable price is impossible.
I would love a more detailed description of using SymbOS with SF3.

Offline gflorez

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #997 on: 2022.January.01. 13:51:33 »
Is what I mean.... You don't need the SD cartridge to run the new SymbOS version.... If you own a SF3....

First, do you have recently updated your SF3? The last public version can be found here.

A short tutorial on how to update is placed here.

Once done, when you boot the EP+SF3, you will see that a Rom named SF3 has been added to the list of Roms when you type :HELP +Enter on the Basic editor.

What I mean with "Geco's trick" is his clever way to fool the EP to use the USB pen drive as a massive storage.

This will be done automatically if you don't have a SD-cartridge or an EXDOS interface connected.

Here it is explained:

Geco has implemented a new command DEF_DEV_ that has to be executed at the start of a session.

:def_dev_XXXX
file - sf3 usb
disk - exdos
tape - tape loading

As the name implies, if you execute :def_dev_file, what it does is to assign the default path of Saving and Loading to the SF3, but the trick doesn't use the EXDOS.Rom...., so, if you execute a :Dir, it will produce an error on an only-Tape Enterprise, or will show you a different drive content on a SD, IDE or Floppy based Enterprise...

To solve this, Geco has implemented some simple file management commands inside the SF3Boot.Rom, that make the same actions as the known ones in the EXDOS.Rom:

:sf3 cd
:sf3 dir
:sf3 md
:sf3 rd
:sf3 del


Until now, SymbOS could be launched, but then it can't recognise the pendrive as one of its logical units. This is the exciting change: now you can manage your FAT32 pen drive directly on SymbOS.

So, now you can load all the SymbOS files on the pen drive and try it.

Just to reassure, execute:    :def_dev_file +Enter on the Basic editor, and then execute   :sf3 dir +Enter   .

If you see the content of the pen drive all has worked as intended.

Once you have navigated the pen drive to the place where you have put the SymbOS files, you only need to execute :LOAD SYM +Enter, as usual.

Sadly, ISDOS needs the pen drive integrated on EXDOS to be able to work from it, and it only will happen when the long time awaited FAT16 update will be released. 

Any news about this?
« Last Edit: 2022.January.01. 15:06:03 by gflorez »

Offline Allf

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #998 on: 2022.January.01. 18:18:35 »
Thanks for the detailed description!

Offline gflorez

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #999 on: 2022.January.01. 18:23:04 »
Ok..... I tend to write faster than I try...

Something bad happens when the only device connected is the SF3, and SymbOS doesn't work from it.  I will talk with Prodatron about it.


Also, on an EP without EXDOS or SD-Cartridge, SymbOS must be executed like a Basic TAPE: program: LOAD "SYM" +Enter.
« Last Edit: 2022.January.02. 21:43:24 by gflorez »

Offline Lacika

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #1000 on: 2022.January.26. 21:16:34 »
The chessboard is wrong in ChesSym. Field A1 is black, not white.

Offline gflorez

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #1001 on: 2022.February.06. 23:24:04 »
I am still waiting for Prodatron to fix the error, but he is very busy adding options to SymbOS.



Now he is adding musical device compatibility to all SymbOS computers, even those Hardware that never existed for the Enterprise.....

Here I bring you a short Youtube video:



You can see behind the SimbiFace 3 the very big OPL4 MSX cartridge, a Tecnobytes Brazilian clone of the famed Sunrise Moonsound. It is connected to the Enterprise by means of a M-Slot adapter.

On the screen you can see how it has been detected by SymAmp.

Then some music files are played, first an Amiga .MOD song and then several .SA2 Adlib Tracker songs.

Observe the low CPU usage on the Task Manager screen.

Offline geco

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Re: SymbOS
« Reply #1002 on: 2022.February.07. 10:34:12 »
:smt041