Let's develop an open-source media archive standard

From: Dwight K. Elvey <dwight.elvey_at_amd.com>
Date: Wed Aug 11 17:57:55 2004

 Again, these are archive files. First preserve the media information.
If ones wants, one can add other features. Emulators that don't
provide some level of I/O interface at a low level usually don't
work well for all programs. Emulators should as a minimum, provide
a BIOS level interface ( if such exist ). Even this may not
be low level enough. If someone writes an emulator that sees things
at such a high level as simply files, it will most likely be
useless for anything but the simplest programs that could have
run on almost any platform.
 None of the emulators that I've used so far have been at such a
high level of I/O. They have all understood drive, track and sector.
 If you wish to create such an emulator, you can alway post process
the archive data ( once ) into whatever format is convenient. There
is no particular reason to make archive files emulator friendly.
As I've proposed, adding built in language definitions, one could
add special purpose functions to do things like extract files
based on directory entries. Even if not directly used, existing
as source in the archive could provide the emulator writer the
methods needed to do such them selves.
 I'm not saying that we should specifically restrict such from
being in the archive file, just that I still don't see why
a proper emulator would require such.

>From: "Steve Thatcher" <melamy_at_earthlink.net>
>would you rather have one format that allows for easy data access and
re-creation of media or only be able to re-create media and have a difficult
interface in EVERY emulator that needs to access the data? From a usage
standpoint, I think putting the burden on the emulators is not a reasonable
approach. There are a variety of emulators available do not have to deal with
track sector access of information. One uses an import command to bring ms-dos
files in for example. To have to write an outside utility that has to know what
the image file type is, know the physical layout of the disk, know how the OS
accesses files on the disk just to retrieve file data is not a good idea. leave
the OS access to the real platform or emulators that want to deal with actual
tracks and sectors.
>best regards, Steve Thatcher
>-----Original Message-----
>From: "Dwight K. Elvey" <dwight.elvey_at_amd.com>
>Sent: Aug 11, 2004 3:05 PM
>To: cctalk_at_classiccmp.org
>Subject: Re: Let's develop an open-source media archive standard
>>From: spc_at_conman.org
>>It was thus said that the Great Vintage Computer Festival once stated:
>>> HOWEVER, this makes it very difficult to use the imagefile on an emulator.
>>> To use the floppy disk example again, if the emulator wants Track 14
>>> Sector 8 (or Block 417) but it has not been explicitly laid out in the
>>> imagefile because it was originally zeroes, then the emulator, if poorly
>>> designed, may crap out.
>> Are you trying to create an archive format, or a format that is to be used
>>by emulators? I say skip the emulators and concentrate on archival
>>purposes. An emulator can then use the archive format to create a disk
>>image in whatever internal format it requires.
>> Don't complicate the problem.
> I agree. We only need to provide a format that could be converted
>for a specific emulator, not necessarily one that can be conveniently
>read by an emulator.
>> -spc (And don't try to become everything for everybody ... )
Received on Wed Aug 11 2004 - 17:57:55 BST

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