Catweasel, Tim's Ferret, etc.

From: Don Maslin <>
Date: Tue Jul 4 23:26:57 2000

On Tue, 4 Jul 2000, Louis Schulman wrote:

> I am another one of the members of this list who is
> definitely not any kind of a techie, hardware or software.
> My best hardware effort was replacing a shorted capacitor
> on a Lisa I/O board. My best software effort was a couple
> of lines of 6502 Assembler to modify some program (I don't
> remember the details).
> I use an old Central Point PC Option board to read and
> write strange format disks. It can copy virtually anything
> physically readable by the drives connected. It will copy
> the strange TRSDOS 2.3 single-density disks, for example,
> and make working copies.
> The only format conversion software it comes with is to
> read and write Mac GCR disks. Otherwise, it creates a raw
> data image that can be saved. Someone has also written a
> program that converts its raw data output to Apple II
> format.
> The reason I bring this up in this discussion is that the
> device seems to do exactly what you are all talking about,
> and it is an extremely simple device. It has one large
> chip, a trivial amount of additional circuitry, and that's
> it. It goes between the floppy controller and the drives.
> Maybe it just provides the buffer you are all talking
> about, I don't know.
> In any event, before the wheel is reinvented, if any of you
> drive mavens would care to examine a PC Option board and
> its software, I would be glad to lend it out, to serious
> developers only.
> BTW, one of the included programs with the device is a
> track editor, which allows all the usually unseen data to
> be modified. My understanding is that Central Point was
> forced to remove this product from the market by lawsuits
> from software publishers, who alleged that its main purpose
> was to violate their copyright protection schemes.

That is always a possibility, Louis, though I never heard that
expressed previously. I always figured that it was just another
one of those useful things that got swallowed up by Symantec -
never to see the light of day again.

                                                 - don
> Just a thought.
> Louis
Received on Tue Jul 04 2000 - 23:26:57 BST

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