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98pacecar

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I just got a suicided bonanza Bros setup (floppy based) that I’d like to restore. Do you still need someone with a board to test your patched roms?
 

Apocalypse

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98pacecar

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We'll that's not good. I know the previous owner tried multiple drives, so time to break out a probe I guess!
 

Apocalypse

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We'll that's not good. I know the previous owner tried multiple drives, so time to break out a probe I guess!
My best advice would be: forget the OG floppy drive and go for an emulator.
 

98pacecar

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Luckily, I have a couple of HxCs laying around for just such a project! If I just want to run Bonanza Bros, I can drop the encrypted image on the HxC and be good to go? It's only if I want the full multi that I need additional hardware/your decrypted images?
 

Apocalypse

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Luckily, I have a couple of HxCs laying around for just such a project! If I just want to run Bonanza Bros, I can drop the encrypted image on the HxC and be good to go? It's only if I want the full multi that I need additional hardware/your decrypted images?
Bonanza Bros isn't encrypted.
You have to convert the floppy image from MAME's romset to HFE format.
If you already have a HxC then you don't need additional hardware to run all floppy games.
My decrypted images allow you to play encrypted games with a standard CPU (68K) instead of the Sega's custom module (FD1094).
 

98pacecar

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Gotcha. Thanks so much for the assist! If I can get the board working again, I'll be coming to you for your images!
 

stj

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did junoman ever make his decrypted floppy images public??
 

Apocalypse

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did junoman ever make his decrypted floppy images public??
Unfortunately not (this would have save me dozens of hours of work, I would have been more than happy to buy kits from him).
I'm not even sure he decrypted completely the games.
I know he was able to boot Crack Down but not sure it was playable ingame.
 

Mr T Guru

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would be nice to see these released publicly. while it's fine to receive some small reward for doing the initial hacking, there are FAR too many people profiting from the good work MAME has done. Being public allows people (who are capable) to fix their own boards without having to bend over and get shafted.

btw, I dumped almost all the S24 floppy-based games for MAME years ago. I can tell you for sure you can't write the MAME images to floppy, there is no program that supports the custom format and unfortunately they can't be converted, at least not with MAME or any program I know of. The program used to read the images was an old DOS program and it can't write them. The only way is to use some newer program with both read and write capability and make an image of the working floppy. I did some experiments about 2 years ago with several programs and found a program that can read and write and tested the images and they work on the real S24 PCB. Not all programs that can read strange floppy formats will work on S24 disks. I sent my findings and new writable images in to be added to MAME but they were ignored. Shortly after that I sold my only S24 board so the testing ended.
The bottom line is the images in MAME are useless to fix a real PCB even if you have a working FD1094. All the floppies need to be re-read from working floppies and written to some image format that can be written back to real floppies on a PC like I did 2 years ago.
 

Darksoft

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and that program is....??

Do you still have those images?
 

Apocalypse

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would be nice to see these released publicly. while it's fine to receive some small reward for doing the initial hacking, there are FAR too many people profiting from the good work MAME has done. Being public allows people (who are capable) to fix their own boards without having to bend over and get shafted.

btw, I dumped almost all the S24 floppy-based games for MAME years ago. I can tell you for sure you can't write the MAME images to floppy, there is no program that supports the custom format and unfortunately they can't be converted, at least not with MAME or any program I know of. The program used to read the images was an old DOS program and it can't write them. The only way is to use some newer program with both read and write capability and make an image of the working floppy. I did some experiments about 2 years ago with several programs and found a program that can read and write and tested the images and they work on the real S24 PCB. Not all programs that can read strange floppy formats will work on S24 disks. I sent my findings and new writable images in to be added to MAME but they were ignored. Shortly after that I sold my only S24 board so the testing ended.
The bottom line is the images in MAME are useless to fix a real PCB even if you have a working FD1094. All the floppies need to be re-read from working floppies and written to some image format that can be written back to real floppies on a PC like I did 2 years ago.
Hi Guru,
Sorry to contradict you but you can write MAME floppy image files with Anadisk. This is how I did my first tests before I moved to the USB floppy emulator solution (step by step approach).

On a side note I do my best to contribute to MAME, I send undumped romsets from time to time.

[EDIT]
I don't see the point in using floppies in 2018. Just go for a floppy emulator, you can put the whole library on a 64MB stick...
 
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stj

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anadisk can be fussy about the floppy controller, i suspect newer pc's dont implement the whole shugart standard like index-hole timing.

i did see images once of a setup using the sys24 floppy board hooked to a devboard of some type that could create perfect disks.
 

Mr T Guru

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Yes the old DOS program was Anadisk and yes it is VERY fussy about the hardware. The older the better, common modern PCs won't work with Anadisk. Even so, as far as I know Anadisk can't write the images. There's no Write menu option, at least not in the version I used. If it can then fine, use it to write the images to real floppies.
The program I used to re-image the original floppies is called Samdisk. This program supports modern hardware and should be used to create new base images instead of using an old junky DOS program from the 80's.
If Anadisk can write, write the MAME images to floppies then read all of them using Samdisk and distribute them as the master image files. That way anyone with any PC can write the images. As I said the MAME images were originally created by Anadisk and are not compatible with any other floppy imaging program so they need to be updated to more modern images and the old Anadisk images left to die peacefully.

FYI, in case people don't know, the real S24 board has a built-in floppy copy mode accessed by going into test mode. I sold my S24 board so I can't check now and I don't remember the exact way but I think service and test is held in when powering on or something. Then basically follow the prompts to copy the floppy to a blank one. If anyone owns a real S24 game and has not backed up their original floppy do so now before it dies.

Someone should make new images of all the games using Samdisk so they are available and anyone with a modern PC can make a new floppy or convert their board to run other games. With cracked versions, the conversion is pretty simple, it's basically just a different floppy disk as most of the floppy-based games use the same EPROMs.
 
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stj

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just so you know, atleast some of the games will only backup the original disk, not the backup.
they set a flag on the backup to say it's not original.


there are some rom patches around to stop this.
 

Apocalypse

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To access the floppy copy menu you must hold service while powering the board (if you hold test then you access the diagnostic mode).
I'm not going to rewrite all floppy images to real floppies and dump them again. Floppy drives and floppy media are all going to die anyway. MAME images work perfectly with a floppy emulator.
 

dlfrsilver

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Hello Apocalypse, first of all thanks for decrypting the system 24. I own an original Crackdown arcade board that i will now dessuicide (i will contact you soon for a kit). I have in fact crackdown and scramble spirit original floppies :)

You have noticed the mess that it is to write those back on disk. Gotek is sure a good thing, but i have a way for people needing to write the games back on real disks if they want to.

The key is the kryoflux board. You can write with it any type of floppy disk. Since the System 24 are using PC booter disk type with custom or exotic sectors on tracks, it's the best way.

I have already imaged my own original disks, but i would like to test as well your decrypted sets Crackdown and Scramble spirits on my board with its original floppy drive :)

PS : i saw on your blog your harness to get this system display on 15khz screens with the GBS8520 pcb.

Could it be possible for you to post the whole thing and how to build it ?

Thanks for reading me :)
 

Apocalypse

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PS : i saw on your blog your harness to get this system display on 15khz screens with the GBS8520 pcb.

Could it be possible for you to post the whole thing and how to build it ?

Thanks for reading me :)
Hey!
It's actually quite simple, I've connected the RGB and S input of the GBS8200 to the outputs of my supergun.
There's additional wiring as the screen I'm using also has an audio input.
 
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