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AuthorTopic: FASTEST,EAYSIEST,CHEAPEST WAY TO TRANSFER ADF IMAGES BETWEEN PC AND AMIGA(mostly 500)  (Read 13607 times)

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Offline ikonsgr

[UPDATE] I've just received feedback for using the kit with AMIGA 500+ : Transfer times are reduced ~50% against AMIGA 500! You can copy an adf image to the disk in just 75 seconds!!
(Finally found something that ECS chipset along with kickstart 2.0 made a REAL difference from OCS kick 1.3:  I/O ports work faster! )

If you happen to have a "humble" Amiga 500 or 500+ like myself ,without any  "serious" addons (except maybe from an extra 512k ram and a 2nd  floppy...)  you would probably tempted many  times by the numerous games  that are widely availiable today, in the  form of adf images,and how  you could enjoy them on your beloved Amiga. Or  perhaps, you have some  programs or games (even saved games...)  that you'd like to transfer them as adf images and use them with winuae  or just take adf backups!
Up untill now, the options we have where:
1) Use a serial cable and some porgram like amiga explorer which is very cheap and rather easy procedure, but,unfortunately the poor 68000/7.16Mhz   of an A500 can't give you nothing faster than 19.2kbps transfer rate   e.g. at least 8 MINUTES to transfer one adf image!!!
2)Use some floppy emu with sd card.Again,this "solution" is rather   expensive (~90euro),and it doesn't give you any  noticeable speed  improvement,as the use of a fast sd card might suggest,the speed of  amiga accessing adf images on sd card, is more or less of a classic  floppy disk drive.
3)Use a CATWEASEL MK4 PLUS PCI card .Of  course this card can do much more than transfer adf files to amiga  disks, and for that, it's rather expensive too (~120euro including  postage)

Having to face this situation, i decided to try and "fill the gap"  between the cheap but slow serial transfer "solution", and the  fast but  expensive floppy emu or catweasel pci card alternative. After a lot of  searching,testing and programming, i've come up with a "solution" that ,  not only combines the cheap cost of the serial cable with MUCH more  transfer speed,but also, is SUPER easy and simple to do it!


FIRST THE "INGRIDIENTS" for the..."recipe":

1) An amiga 500 and it's psu   .Frankly you wont be needing ANYTHING else for the procedure,not even a   monitor or tv connected to your amiga !(extremely usefull if there is a   realtive big distance between your amiga and pc or if you dont have   enough space for the monitor near your pc)
2) A PC running windows (XP,VISTA,7 32bit or 64bit) equiped with a parallel port. .Dont  worry if your motherboard doesn't have any parallel port, you can find  countless  pci/pcie parallel cards on ebay, almost for nothing, (i  bought mine for less than 3euros... )
3) A special kit i make, where you can find it here:http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AMIGA-PC-A...item1c293ad68c    .For ~10pounds (including postage), you will get a special custom  made  parallel cable and 1 amiga boot disk. (bellow i give you all the   neccesary info to try and make it yourself too! )
4) Many amiga formated 3.5" disks to transfer your beloved games adf images!

Also you will need one of these: http://sdrv.ms/M6Xe6g  . Download the apropriate file according to your windows version  (adf_transfer_32 for 32bit windows and adf_transfer_64 for 64bit  windows) and uncompress it anywhere in your hard disk.

Now for the "cooking":

FOR TRANSFERING ADF IMAGES FROM THE PC TO AMIGA 500:


1) Connect amiga and pc with the cable (beware to plug the right end on each side,if you put it either way it will not work!)
2) Power on your amiga
3) Insert the boot disk of the kit, and wait untill floppy led turns off
4) Insert the first empty amiga disk.  
5) Go to the uncompressed folder and Run adf_transfer.exe. (on windows vista/7 you must "run as administrator")
6) Press "open file" button and select the adf image you want to transfer
7) Press "transfer" button.
8 )On the cli window that will appear on you screen of your pc, you watch the procedure of the transfer.For an adf image it will take about 1 minute and 50seconds!! (compare it with the at least 8minutes you need using a serial cable for the transfer using an amiga 500...)
9)After the transfer is completed,insert another empty amiga disk to your A500 drive
10)Goto step 6)

FOR TRANSFERING DISKS FROM AMIGA 500 TO ADF IMAGES ON YOUR PC:

-For 32bit version of the program ONLY: Install the special dosbox  megabuild release, found in the  uncompressed folder.USE THE DEAFULT  INSTALL DIRECTORY (otherwise  amiga->pc transfer will not work)
1) Connect amiga and pc with the cable (beware to plug the right end on each side,if you put it either way it will not work!)
2) Power on your amiga
3) Insert the boot disk of the kit, and wait untill floppy led turns   off.Press and then .Wait untill floppy led   turns off.
4) Insert the first amiga disk you want to transfer.  
5) Go to the uncompressed folder and Run adf_transfer.exe.Select  direction "AMIGA-->PC" (on windows vista/7 you must "run as  administrator")
6) Press "transfer" button.
7) After the transfer is completed,you will have a newly created adf   image in the folder of the adf_transfer programm.insert another amiga   disk you want to transfer, to your A500 drive.
8 ) Goto step 6)

The above procedures can be used on any amiga model, (500,500+,600,1200,2000 etc) but i believe, it would prove especially usefull on older 500/500+ models which lacks the Ide connector and pcmcia card slot that newer models (600,1200) has, and so they can't provide any easy and cheap alternative to access adf images or transfer files from/to a PC.Also nowadays , any addon accelerator cards,addon memmories or scsi hd's for 500/500+ models are rather expensive and difficult to find!
Finally, the speed improvement against serial transfer is MUCH bigger on amiga 500/500+ :

ON AMIGA 500: ABOUT 430% THE SPEED OF THE FASTEST SERIAL TRANSFER (max 19200bps)
ON AMIGA 500+/600:ABOUT 220% THE SPEED OF THE FASTEST SERIAL TRANSFER (max 38400bps)
ON AMIGA 1200: ABOUT 150% THE SPEED OF THE FASTEST SERIAL TRANSFER (max~56000bps)

  Using xcopy (perhaps the best disk utility on amiga) needs  about  1minute and 40 seconds to copy an entire disk,which is roughly the  same  time you need to transfer the adf image from your pc to amiga  disk,  using an amiga 500!
As you can see, the hole step procedure is so plain and simple that,if   you follow exactly the steps above, you can transfer many disks in a   row, without even having a monitor connected to your amiga!

Now, if you are more of a "do it your self" guy, you can try and make the special parallel calble yourself:

You wil need 2X 25pin D male connectors and make the cable (using a   multistrand cable with at least 10 inner cables) according to this:

    =============================================
      AMIGA SIDE |       Pins        |  PC SIDE
    ----------------------------------------------
     Data bit 0  |     2 <---> 2     | Data bit 0
     Data bit 1  |     3 <---> 3     | Data bit 1
     Data bit 2  |     4 <---> 4     | Data bit 2
     Data bit 3  |     5 <---> 5     | Data bit 3
     Data bit 4  |     6 <---> 6     | Data bit 4
     Data bit 5  |     7 <---> 7     | Data bit 5
     Data bit 6  |     8 <---> 8     | Data bit 6
     Data bit 7  |     9 <---> 9     | Data bit 7
     Busy             | 11 <---> 11    | Busy
     Paper Out|    12 <---> 1     | Strobe
     Ground   |    25 <---> 25    | Ground
    ==============================================

Also you must take the file "paradise" which is in the folder "TOAMIGA"   (inside the "adf_transfer" folder that you previous download),transfer   it to an amiga disk and execute it in wb's amiga shell.For more   information read the included paradise.doc.
I hope this new method of fast,easy and cheap adf transfer would make  many of you to get your old amiga's  out of the closets and trunks , and enjoy once again your beloved programs and games you want!


*some usefull notes:

1)Always turn off amiga and pc before connecting parallel cable.
2) On the amiga-->pc transfers you may notice that sometimes pc and   amiga can't start the connection.In that case press and   on amiga and "transfer" button on pc program.
3) I have succesfully test the kit with the program using an amiga 500  and 2 pc's:a rather old athlon xp with on board parallel port running  windows xp/7 32bit, and a modern quad core amd fx pc equiped with a   parallel port on a pci card, running windows xp/32bit and windows  7/64bit.
4) All programs that are used in the transfer proccess (including my adf_transfer gui utility) are freeware.
5) Some "teaser": Check out the attached photo of the program, "on  duty". Notice that  having transfered ~25% of the adf file to disk,the  ramaining time  expected, is less than 85seconds!!
« Last Edit: August 06, 2012, 10:20:10 AM by ikonsgr »
 

Offline Machico2012

My friend, your method is surely cheap. When i decided, couple weeks ago, to bring my amiga 500 back to action (stored between 1997 and 2012), after the cleaning etc, i found myself with 2 major problems: floppy drive and my hundreds of floppies in a bad shape, ... my solution after searching a lot, was getting a wonderful piece of hardware to replace the floppy drive and leave my desktop free of those nice hundreds of floppies disks, i´m talking about the HXC floppy emulator. Yes, it´s kinda expensive, but you won´t regret after all is set up and ur enjoying hundreds of adf´s with great simplicity.
 

Offline ikonsgr

Well my friend,
   IF i had a big collection of home micros and wanted to see many many games on my amiga (that would require 100's of disks), then i agree that a floppy emu (or even the more expensive a katweasel pci card) would be more apropriate and surely worth the money for it! ;-)
In my case (and maybe of others too) i initilally only wanted to play some  15-20 favorite games that would require some 10's of disks (btw, you can still find very cheap new HD 3.5" disks and with a 20sec format using xcopy will be "ready to use"  ;-) ) . Now, i don't know about you, but personally, i wouldn't spend ANYTHING more than a 20euro bill (at most) to do that!
Using the kit, i made the disks in a couple of hours! After a few months,maybe i will need again to transfer some other 10-15 games,which will be very easy to do it using the same procedure!
 And to tell you the truth,I REALLY enjoy the hole procedure, having my pc and amiga connnected like this, gave me a little of this sweet old school "do it your self" hobyist feeling, that surely characterize "amiga spirit" :) ;-)
 

Offline Machico2012

I guess your right about that sweet feeling, still in these fast food days:), time is precious, and its becoming harder to get floppie disks... thats what motivated me. About the cost itself, at the time i just convinced myself that it would be a good investiment... and after a month i dont regret... the joy of seeing my kids playing games like twintris and others is priceless. LONG LIVE AMIGA with floppies or ADF´S.
 

Offline smerf

Hi,

If you use Cloanto's Amiga Forever on your PC, you wouldn't have to go through all that trouble. Just boot up AF and play or run the program you want, and it is rather cheap. i believe about $39.95 or less for a digital download, and it can be cheaper if you owned AF before.

This also saves your Amiga 500 hardware, unless for some reason you like burning up old silicon.

smerf
I have no idea what your talking about, so here is a doggy with a small pancake on his head.

MorphOS is a MAC done a little better
 

Offline Forcie

Quote from: smerf;701532
Hi,

If you use Cloanto's Amiga Forever on your PC, you wouldn't have to go through all that trouble. Just boot up AF and play or run the program you want, and it is rather cheap. i believe about $39.95 or less for a digital download, and it can be cheaper if you owned AF before.

This also saves your Amiga 500 hardware, unless for some reason you like burning up old silicon.

smerf

Why should he shell out 40 bucks for Amiga Forever when he obviously owns both a 500 and a 500+ and is in his full right to just download WinUAE for free and emulate anything he wants with his own kickstart ROM images?
Is the superficial extra Windows GUI stuff included really worth that much to you? Maybe I don't really see the value because I have been using WinUAE since the late 1990's and know the configuration options by heart, but still, 40 bucks?
 

Offline smerf

@Forcie,

Years ago I used to use winuae, but AF is so much easier to use. To me it is worth the $40 just so I can boot up any type of Amiga and game that I want. It even recognizes CD-32 programs and runs them (yes I have one of those with an sx-1 expansion). Since I am getting up in age, I and the wife have talked about retiring and going to the Philippines, we are also thinking of auctioning off a lot of my Amiga gear. Will need the money once i get there. Still just thoughts.

smerf
I have no idea what your talking about, so here is a doggy with a small pancake on his head.

MorphOS is a MAC done a little better
 

Offline Tenacious

@ Ikonsgr
Good Work!  There is always someone trying to resurrect their unexpanded 500 without the knowledge to do what you have outlined so well.  Maybe this board would consider adding your contribution to a Wiki or some other knowledge base that is easily accessed.

Even when you expand an Amiga to the max, there is still something magical about a minimalist hardware system (especially if it is your first Amiga) that is tweaked to live well inside its limits.  The OS really seems to shine.  My favorite minimal system is an A500 with 4 or 8 Megs of fast ram and configured with half as a RAD: drive.  Amazingly fast.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 03:45:54 AM by Tenacious »
 

Offline ikonsgr

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and concerns about this project!
Allow me to express a couple of thoughts too:

Sure,  using Winuae or AF on a modern PC or MAC, you can run and play all the  (nowadays easily availiable on adf images) games and programs very  easily. You can even emulate amiga models that you never owned!
I  also know that many people who lived the amiga era, being in the  "proper" age (teen to late 20's) back then, are begining to have "aging"  symptoms :)  : They seem to have lost this "do it yourself", hobbyst attitude i told  you before, which i think is also required if you want to use the method i propose you here.Unfortunately, making a familly,the daily routine and obligations, finally  make this attitude seems a little bit of a "luxury that i dont have  anymore", for many of us.So we end up in just wanting to relive, as easy as possible, every now and then, some memmories  and "amiga magic" through emulation on our modern monster PC's or even  using a floppy emu instead of the "crappy,old,tedious" 3.5" disks....
All these are very nice and good and easy but....
IT'S NOT THE SAME!
Call me crazy,pervert or even mazochist :) but for me, the ONLY way to relive the ORIGINAL feeling and emotions we had some 20-25 years ago, is USING A REAL AMIGA WITH REAL 3.5" DISKS!
It's like a kind of "sacred ritual":
Power  on your amiga, hear the constant kicking  of the drive's head every  couple of seconds, "demanding" for a disk. Then you take in your hand a disk, inserting it in the drive,  hearing the characteristic locking  sound, and  then you just sit and "enjoy" the... reading "music" of the drive's  humming and grumbling!:)  Judging of my personal experience i can tell you that even the tedious disk exchange (if the game is more than a couple of disks) ,in some twisted way, can add to that "real amiga feeling"! (Of course i'm not talking about some 8,9,10,11 disk game, this would be really a NIGTHMARE if you dont have an hdd installed anyway! 2nd or 3rd floppy doesnt do any good either, because of the endless pauses and waiting times that constant disk reading required...)
Bottom line:

"Real man do it on silicon using 3.5" disks" :laugh1::rolleyes:

In the end,i truly believe that, what method someone would cosider as "best" for reliving "amiga magic" (emulation,floppy emu,cable transfer etc), has really nothing to do about money!
It's just a matter of still having this oldschool, "do it yourself", hobbist attitude or not, the essence of TRUE AMIGA SPIRIT!  ;)

And  i know that even the oldest and more tired of us ,who maybe have lost this attitude (i'm in my late 30's  and unmarried so i supose that's why i'm still not feeling so "tired" :) ), will agree to that! ;)
« Last Edit: July 30, 2012, 03:40:00 PM by ikonsgr »
 

Offline kedawa

If my PC had a parallel port, I'd give this a shot.
I could never get Amiga Explorer to connect.
 

Offline paul1981

@ ikonsgr

I love the drive sounds as well! Lotus and Lotus 2 make mighty fine "grunts" and "murmurs".
Ahhhh... sweet music to my ears.

:crazy:
 

Offline ikonsgr

Quote from: kedawa;701631
If my PC had a parallel port, I'd give this a shot.
I could never get Amiga Explorer to connect.
Then why dont you try something like this?
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/170848137777?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649
Ebay has TONS of these cards, and they cost almost nothing!
This particular pci card, is the one i use on my modern pc (which of course doesnt have any parallel port onboard) and works perfect, both on windows xp and windows 7 64bit! ;)
It's really a unique experience to watch a 1987 16bit amiga 500 and  a modern monster pc running windows 7 64bit ,siting side by side and exchanging data, like "brothers"! :)
 

Offline ikonsgr

In now offer  TWO VERSIONS of  the adf transfer kit:One with the cable and amiga boot disk and one  which also includes a pci parallel card for all of you that you dont  have a pc with parallel port onboard!
 

Offline persia

[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

What we\'re witnessing is the sad, lonely crowing of that last, doomed cock.
 

Offline Oldsmobile_Mike

Quote from: ikonsgr;720311
In now offer  TWO VERSIONS of  the adf transfer kit:One with the cable and amiga boot disk and one  which also includes a pci parallel card for all of you that you dont  have a pc with parallel port onboard!


Thanks!  I've been struggling for a while with an idea how to get .adf's onto my Amiga 500, and was sort of resigned to having to upgrade the memory on it (enough to hold a complete .adf file), and then getting a serial cable, a USB->serial adapter for my PC, waiting for the slow serial transfer, etc.  Your kit sure makes this easier though, heck, I couldn't make my own cable for the low price you're charging, LOL.  ;-)

Just ordered it off your ebay site, looking forward to trying it out!  :)
Amiga 500: 2MB Chip|16MB Fast|30MHz 68030+68882|3.9|Indivision ECS|GVP A500HD+|Mechware card reader + 8GB CF|Cocolino|SCSI DVD-RAM
Amiga 2000: 2MB Chip|136MB Fast|50MHz 68060|3.9|Indivision ECS + GVP Spectrum|Mechware card reader + 8GB CF|AD516|X-Surf 100|RapidRoad|Cocolino|SCSI CD-RW
 Amiga videos and other misc. stuff at https://www.youtube.com/CompTechMike/videos