Any AMIGA users?

From: Christopher Smith <>
Date: Thu Jan 3 13:12:14 2002

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Fred Cisin (XenoSoft) []

> The discussion was how to make an Amiga disk using a PC.
> It can not be done with the stock PC hardware.
> Somebody said that it could be done with the stock PC, by using Linux.

Well, you don't have to shout. :) That statement would obviously be incorrect. (I admit that I missed this assertion the first time around) It can _possibly_ be done with a modified peesee, and it can probably be done with a couple of other machines unmodified (but still using linux and the normal floppy drivers).

> The "standard linux floppy disk driver" will operate the
> Catweasel card?
> (It is NOT a floppy disk controller in terms of BIOS level
> interaction.)

I was under the impression that it would drive a catweasel card. I was not aware that the card was significantly different than other (normal peesee) floppy interfaces, though, so perhaps I got the wrong idea from somewhere.

On the other hand, the linux "floppy driver" is, as I understand it, actually a collection of drivers, and the same code-base may actually be used to handle all manner of strange disk/drive setups.

> Or
> The "standard linux floppy disk driver" will do stuff that is
> impossible
> with the PC hardware, without needing the Catweasel?

Obviously not. :) Well, not if you're running linux on "PC hardware." If you're running linux on, for instance, a Macintosh, it will read and write 400 and 800k mac disks, which is impossible on "PC hardware." ;) (Let's not get into that again, though...)

> It WOULD be possible to write a floppy disk driver for Linux
> that could
> make use of the Catweasel. But it has, apparently NOT been done, and
> therefore suggestions of USING that are inappropriate.

True enough, and as I said, I've heard of no special catweasel driver; just that linux would operate the catweasel controller. Since I don't have a catweasel, I can't really verify that.

> > Or ... one could write an amiga filesystem for linux. I actually
> > wonder why this hasn't been done.

> For use with linux on an Amiga?

No, for use with hard disks, SCSI removable media, and the like, which could likely be transported without trouble.

> Or are you trying to say that writing an amiga filesystem for
> Linux, would
> permit a PC running Linux to read and write Amiga disksettes without
> special hardware?

Well, for all I know, Amiga may have had a 1.44MB format which could work, but that's just a guess, based on the fact that Apple's works fine.

> Could you also write one for NorthStar-DOS? (hard-sectored)

Given a hard sectored drive, I would guess... (Or what about putting a soft-sector drive in the NorthStar?)

It's a pretty normal format otherwise, right?

> How about one for Apple-DOS? (GCR)

That's more difficult.

> How about one that reads 8" diskettes in a 5.25" drive?
> (Maybe trimming
> the edges, and not being able to read some outer tracks :-)

Actually you might be able to get by with it in a high density drive, given some way of attaching the disk to the "spindle" of the drive, and provided that you didn't really want to keep the disk anyway (or possibly the drive!), and if you were willing to write mind-numbingly useless special-purpose software. Otherwise, I hear that CompatiCard will drive an 8" floppy ;)



Christopher Smith, Perl Developer
Amdocs - Champaign, IL

/usr/bin/perl -e '
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Received on Thu Jan 03 2002 - 13:12:14 GMT

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