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New Firmware for Floppy Emu

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After a long period of hibernation, today I’ve released a set of firmware updates for the Floppy Emu disk emulator. These updates provide a few user interface improvements taken from customer suggestions over the past year, and also fix a couple of small bugs. Enjoy!

Ellipses in Long File Names – Don’t you hate it when you’ve got several disk images with very similar names, like Operating System Install Disk 1.dsk, Operating System Install Disk 2.dsk, and Operating System Install Disk 3.dsk? On the Floppy Emu’s built-in display, while browsing the contents of your SD card, the end of those long filenames were all cut off. You couldn’t tell which one was which when selecting a disk image from the menu. With today’s firmware update, the middle of those long filenames will now be replaced with an ellipsis, retaining the beginning and end of the name. Several people have been asking me for this feature for at least a year, so here you go.

Obvious Errors for Unsupported Disk Image Types – The Floppy Emu is always running in a specific emulation mode, like Apple II 5.25 Inch mode or Macintosh HD20 Hard Disk mode. When you’re browsing the contents of your SD card, the Emu knows which disk images are supported by the current mode, and which aren’t. The old behavior was to only display supported disk images and hide the others, but this seems to have confused everybody and left them wondering why their files disappeared. The new behavior is to list (mostly) all the files on the SD card, then show an error if the user selects something that isn’t a disk image supported by the current mode. In this case, you’ll see “disk image type is not supported in the current emu mode”.

Emulation Mode Highlight – Speaking of emulation modes, many people didn’t seem to realize that they exist, resulting in confusion when using the wrong mode or not knowing how to change modes. I can ask them to RTFM, but it would be nice if the UI made it more obvious. I’ve changed the Emu’s startup screen to display the current emulation mode right at the top, in inverse text, so hopefully it will now be impossible to overlook. I also fixed a subtle problem that affected people who switched from the Apple II firmware to the Mac/Lisa firmware: the Emu was defaulting to Lisa 3.5 Floppy mode after the firmware update. Quite a few people didn’t notice, and then couldn’t understand why floppy emulation didn’t work with their Macintosh. I’ve changed the behavior so it will now default to Macintosh 3.5 Floppy mode after the firmware update.

 
Get the new firmware here:

Macintosh and Lisa, for all Floppy Emu models: hd20-0.7G-F14.5
Apple II firmware, for Floppy Emu Model B: apple-ii-0.1R-F8
Apple II firmware, for Floppy Emu Model A: apple-ii-0.1R-F6

With any firmware update, there’s always a chance that I’ll accidentally break something, so please give me your feedback on whether these new versions work for you.

Read 4 comments and join the conversation 

4 Comments so far

  1. Chris M. February 11th, 2017 5:19 pm

    Updating to this firmware, I discovered a problem that actually dates back to the Apple II firmware 0.1M update (the IIc+ timing fix). I hadn’t actually updated my FloppyEmu since I purchased it in 2015 from 0.1J so I never caught the bug.

    Anyway, my FloppyEmu has problems reading when connected to my Apple IIgs in 3.5″ disk mode with my Transwarp GS turned on. With it turned off (running at stock CPU speeds), reading from the FloppyEmu generally works, which points to a weird timing problem. Firmware 0.1K is the last to work properly with the TWGS turned on, so I strongly suspect the timing fix for the IIc+ in 0.1M is causing the problem here. I have downgraded to 0.1K for the time being.

  2. Steve February 12th, 2017 8:14 am

    Thanks, I’ll take a closer look at this. As I recall, the IIc+ timing fix was only for Smartport mode, and only affected how quickly the device could respond to the first Smartport command after a cold boot, so I wouldn’t think it should have had any impact on 3.5 inch disk mode or reading from the disk after booting. Strange.

  3. Chris M. February 14th, 2017 1:48 pm

    This is the Apple IIc+ fix I was referring to: http://www.bigmessowires.com/2016/02/10/apple-iic-is-weird/

    Whats odd is that this is even a problem. When disk I/O is active, the Transwarp GS completely shuts off as the Apple IIgs needs to run at native speed when doing any I/O operations.

  4. Mick February 27th, 2017 7:46 pm

    I’ve been getting a few write errors lately since upgrading.

    incomplete write

    3511

    I have a model A. I’m using it via smartport on a Mac SE Superdrive and Radius Accelerator 25 SE to install System 7.1 onto a 120mb SCSI drive. It occurs after switching from disk Install 1 to Install 2. This isn’t the first time I’ve had issues during installations lately (was running into problems on a IIcx), but it’s the first time I caught it and didn’t just start over and not document to problem. Also, this is still on original capacitors, so it could just be bad hardware.

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