[Coladam] CF card questions

Ron Mitchell rm2892 at gmail.com
Thu Sep 12 08:24:47 CEST 2013

On 2013-09-10, at 4:23 PM, Kevin Powers wrote:

> I have been kicking around some CF card issues with Bob Slopsema and
> thought I would ask for insight from the list, too.  I could really use
> help with any of the following:
> 1) When I got the CF card from Bob, PowerPaint was installed on EOS
> Partition #5.  Setting the CF card to Partition #5 and booting BOOTPAINT,
> however, produces a white screen with a bunch of speckled stuff on it (not
> the PowerPaint boot screen that I see when running PowerPaint on AdamEm).
> Does anyone else have this problem?  Any known fixes for it?  I would hate
> to think that I can't use that program on the drive...

Hi Kevin. 

	With respect to issue 1) Is Bob experiencing the same problem? It runs in my
mind that there was a specially patched version of PowerPaint that was intended for
use with the hard drive. The regular version that runs from floppy disk will not boot 
properly. Are you booting from floppy on the emulator?

> 2) I have several original DDP tapes of the Coleco CP/M & Assembler
> package.  Am I right in thinking that this just cannot work, no way, no
> how?  Bob and I both seem to think it's a dead-end, but I figure it's worth
> getting total confirmation.

Yes, it will work and you can actually do useful work with it (assuming CONSIDERABLE patience). 
However.... CP/M uses floppy
drives and tape drives more intensively that EOS does. It you're going to use
CP'/M from a tape drive, then you really need a dual tape drive setup, with 
both tape drives in top working order. They are going to get used ... A LOT. An d they
will wear quickly, as will your tape media. 

> 3) I also have a lot of the original Coleco home software packages on DDP.
> Flash Facts, other Flashcard programs, Letters & Forms, SmartFILER, Recipe
> Filer, etc.  Does anyone know how to install those programs onto a CF EOS
> partition?

If you've got a working tape drive on the same ADAM as your CF card is installed on
It's a matter of using Filemanager (AJM software) or some similar file copy program that 
recognizes the CF card as a hard drive.. If I recall correctly it was Filemanager 3.1 or 3.2 
that was written for use with the hard drive. You can copy back and forth
between your tape or disk drives and the hard drive. Filemanager is all menu driven
so it should be fairly straightforward.

> 4) Is there an assembler for TDOS that can be installed onto a CF TDOS
> partition?  I don't seem to have an ADAM assembler at the moment, other
> than the one on the CP/M DDPs.  I would like to install one onto the CF
> drive.

Z80ASM - Z80MR - there are all sorts of them

If you go to website:


You'll find all sorts of CP/M software, including a section on assemblers.

The trick with this is to get it onto an ADAM CP/M or TDOS media. Let me take
a look to see what I've got around here that might be of use.  I don't have anything
on disk any more but leave it with me. I might be able to get something to you.

> 5) When copying public domain SmartBASIC compilation tapes to an EOS
> partition, I have found that I occasionally wind up with multiple "Hello"
> or "menu" programs on the same EOS partition.  I have gone into File
> Manager and edited the file names to be distinct, but that seems to always
> have the side effect of removing the file typing from the files in question
> (in otherwords, removing the "A" or "H" etc. designation from files, such
> that their names are no longer recognized when typed into SmartBASIC).  I
> have occasionally circumvented this by using the SmartBASIC "RENAME"
> command, but is there a way to do it directly (without losing the file type
> designations) via File Manager?

Yeah.  Careful how many characters you type. Think you're allowed up to 8 characters
for the actual file name. That is followed by another field where the filetype goes (ONE LETTER which
would be A for a SmartBasic program ---- unless it's binary). If you use
9 or more characters for the filename it simply gets truncated, but the last character, if it is part
of your file name, will end up in the filetype field. So if you make sure you're using no
more than 8 characters for the file name, enter that in the space Filemanager provides you
then hit return, and the cursor will jump over to the right a couple of spaces. Then enter A for the filetype.
(assuming you dealing with a basic program such as HELLO). It's easy to make a 
mistake. Done it lots of times.

> 6) Does anyone know how to move between the four TDOS partitions on a CF
> drive?

TDOS assigns each partition a drive letter, starting at A:  (don't forget the colon). 
B:  C: and D: are the other partitions and once you've got TDOS booted, you simply type the
letter for the drive you want (with the colon). On your A: drive you should have a program called
DRIVES.COM.  It might be named DRIVES12.COM  or something similar.  If you run that,
it will show you what drives it sees. You tape drives and floppy drives are usually listed 
after the 4 hard drive partitions. So your first floppy drive might be E: followed by your tape drive
which would be F:  The last item is your memory expander which would be the next available
letter after the floppy and tape drives. t.


each of your drives - hard drive partition, floppy, or tape drive, has 32 user areas which you
can use to organize stuff. This is a difference from regular CP/M, which has only 16 user
areas per drive. With TDOS if you select A15:  (don't forget the colon) then that would be
the 15th user area of drive A:  If you have the standard suite of programs on A0: you can even
rename the user areas to something easier to remember by using the CD.COM program.
Don't want to come across too confusing, so I'll stop there.

> I would really appreciate any insight that anyone on the list has.  It
> would also allow me to waste less of Bob's time with figuring out my CF
> drive, too!

Let me know what you see on your CF card when you boot TDOS and what programs
you've got on your A0: TDOS drive.

One more thing.  I have a document somewhere  - think it might be in the box I'm holding for you - 
that explains how to set up EOS Software on a partition so that it will boot on
the hard drive. The procedure is not the same for all programs, and my memory fades. 
I'll have to see if I can find that doc..  Again, I'll be back to you.

Still no offers on the house, so your box remains here for you whenever you're ready.

Ron Mitchell

> Thank you,
> Kevin
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> Coladam at adamcon.org
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