News on my GEM applications

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Rajah Lone
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News on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Sun Nov 04, 2012 2:00 am

List and downloads with this link: http://ptonthat.perso.neuf.fr/blog/inde ... plications (more convenient if you do not want to see my aussiebutt)
or directly in the folder : http://ptonthat.perso.neuf.fr/files/ if you are accustomed.

Litchi (FTP client, STiK/STinG tcp/ip layer) : 1.1J
- the program was shareware, it is now freeware.
- alert at launch if the work folder (containing the urls) is not found.
- fix: launch of BubbleGEM (BUBBLE.APP), now effective, was crashing under MiNT.
- fix: wrongly registered in the menu as accessory under Falcon monoTOS.
- fix: new method for verifying free space disk (the old one was not adapted with large disks such as Aranym HOSTFS).
- add: German translation of the ST-Guide documentation.
Merci à Lars Schmidbauer et Cooper/Paradize

Crésus (bank account manager) : 1.1B
- was shareware, now freeware. For unregistered users, the freeze dialog at start is now discarded.
- fix: launch of BubbleGEM wasn't loaded at start, and may have crashed under MiNT.
- fix: crash under MiNT after calling the ST-Guide documentation.
- fix: commit for operations tables, saving was correctly done but one table did not have its status 'saved', so the program asked uselessly one more commit when leaving.

KK Commander (clone of Total Commander) : 1.4G
- fix: new method for free space disk. The old function was not adapted for large space disks such as Aranym HOSTFS. Files could not be extracted, copied or move if the option 'verify remaining space disk' was set.

Troll (NNTP client and POP3/SMTP basic client) : 1.2D
- the program was shareware, it is now freeware.
- fix: launch of BubbleGEM (BUBBLE.APP), now effective, was crashy under MiNT.

My other applications seems to work OK with Aranym and MiNT with Memory Protection. I could not install the ethernet and TCP/IP bridge for Aranym, so could not test the internet functions.

Congratulations to the Aranym and MiNT developpers. The 0.9.14 version is now usable on my MacBook Air (mid 2009): CPU are no more at 100% and the fan is quiet. With the exciting news of the Firebee, and since I had a fix to do on Crésus, I decided to test all my softwares and release some fixes.

Voilà.
Last edited by Rajah Lone on Sat Mar 28, 2015 11:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby thesender604 » Sun Nov 04, 2012 2:47 am

Fantastic :D Thanks

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby jfl » Sun Nov 04, 2012 9:23 am

Hi Rajah,
I quickly tested Litchi and Troll on my FireBee and both are working fine with gluestik (see screenshot).
Thanks for not abandoning your programs as so many others have done.

I did notice an issue when I was trying to take the screenshot with Didier's JPEG Snapshot accessory: if Troll's 'Forums' window is the top window when calling the accessory the desktop menu is not properly closed and the accessory simply does not work. It looks like control of the mouse is not released to the AES or something. I couldn't reproduce this behaviour with the other windows so it's not a big issue.
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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:07 am

Thanks JFL for the test and snapshot. Looks nice with XaAES. I'm glad to see my crap is working on the Firebee.

For the issue you noticed: on the todo-list for Troll, but it is not enough to bother people with a new release. I'll test on my configuration with Didier's accessory (and also my fvdisnap.acc).

Maybe there's an idea for a small util: I have a program named SHOWME/SHOWMOUSE on my MegaST with MagiC. Often, old program hide the mouse cursor and crash, and I rectify this by calling SHOWMOUSE in the MagiC desktop. Something like that could be useful under MiNT system.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby jfl » Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:17 am

Rajah Lone wrote:Maybe there's an idea for a small util: I have a program named SHOWME/SHOWMOUSE on my MegaST with MagiC. Often, old program hide the mouse cursor and crash, and I rectify this by calling SHOWMOUSE in the MagiC desktop. Something like that could be useful under MiNT system.

Control+Alternate+M recovers the mouse under XaAES. I suppose this is the same thing?
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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby CiH » Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:36 am

Nice to see you again Rajah. Feel free to drop by regularly :-)
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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Sun Nov 04, 2012 12:30 pm

jfl wrote:Control+Alternate+M recovers the mouse under XaAES. I suppose this is the same thing?

Oups. Yes, same thing.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Sun Nov 04, 2012 4:22 pm

I see you used the old GFA-Patch library. The reason these don't crash on the Firebee is because that old library has the line-a INIT removed from the startup module, but there are other issues depending on the commands used. You might consider rebuilding them with the new GFA library for the Firebee. Just a suggestion.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Sun Nov 04, 2012 6:52 pm

lp wrote:The reason these don't crash on the Firebee is because that old library has the line-a INIT removed from the startup module, but there are other issues depending on the commands used.


Old habits. I do not know how GFA works, but with the years, the behavior and results of this very old Lib seemed reliable. If I have to release a new version, I'll consider your 3.6r18 version, the $Ax and $Ox are very insteresting. Bravo for your work.

lp wrote:You might consider rebuilding them with the new GFA library for the Firebee.


http://ptonthat.perso.neuf.fr/blog/inde ... retirement
I'm still consider myself retired, and the message in my blog is still valid: everyone is free to get and modify my code, build and make releases as long as no profit is made. The options for the compilator are the ones by default in GFA Menu (that would be : S< F> P< %0 *% E$, important: DIV() and MUL() must be with 32bits, not 16bits).
This will apply evenif I relapse into atari hobby (the Firebee temptation is strong). I wrote and write code. Though I have some tenderness on my programs, taking ownership on this code is not my purpose.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:18 pm

You have the sources on the site, so if someone wanted to they could recompile it. It would be good if your site or the docs or the sources stated the exact compiler settings. Someone might not find this thread.

The thing with the Firebee is the way the stack works. It actually pushes just a byte where as our old systems keep the stack even at all times. In several of the GFA commands it temporarily terminates parameters for calls by saving the trailing byte on the stack, writing a null over the trailer, then calling the OS function, then it puts the trailer back. At that moment the stack is odd going into an OS call. I really don't know if that is reliable. Maybe it is and I'm paranoid? :lol:

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby DarkLord » Sun Nov 04, 2012 8:55 pm

lp wrote:The thing with the Firebee is the way the stack works. It actually pushes just a byte where as our old systems keep the stack even at all times. In several of the GFA commands it temporarily terminates parameters for calls by saving the trailing byte on the stack, writing a null over the trailer, then calling the OS function, then it puts the trailer back. At that moment the stack is odd going into an OS call. I really don't know if that is reliable. Maybe it is and I'm paranoid? :lol:


Maybe this has been answered elsewhere, if so apologies, but why did they do it that way Lonny?

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Sun Nov 04, 2012 9:02 pm

It just the way the Coldfire works and the CFLib which helps old apps run 'as is' can't emulate the old behavior.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Sun Nov 04, 2012 10:40 pm

lp wrote:It would be good if your site or the docs or the sources stated the exact compiler settings. Someone might not find this thread.

I thought one would guess them by looking at GFA Menu defaults, but you're right. The best way is to add a notice.txt in the dev/src archives. This will take some time to update them, however.

lp wrote:In several of the GFA commands it temporarily terminates parameters for calls...

Is there a list of these GFA commands? Or all should be considered as not reliable?
I learnt to avoid faulty ones when MagiC has arrived. But recompilation with your GFA CFLib is the better way. That means a specific executable for CF. I hate to release something I can't test myself, so let's others do it. The other way is that I buy a Firebee: money is not an issue, but time is.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:46 pm

I made a list as I fixed the library, but I am not really sure the scenario I described earlier is a problem. Maybe someone with some Coldfire technical knowledge can say for sure?

Here's the list:

Code: Select all

CLOSE [#x]
EXIST()
INSERT array|()
KILL\MKDIR\RMDIR\CHDIR
MAT RANG
RENAME\NAME
TT? -> div/mul/mod
RC_COPY -> with mode mask
SCRP_WRITE()/APPL_FIND()/RSRC_LOAD()/FORM_ALERT()
SHEL_WRITE()
SHEL_ENVRN()
SPACE$()/STRING$(x,x&)
CHR$()
str$=str$+"x"
VAL()/VAL?()

Probably you are using some of these already and since your apps appear to work perhaps it does not matter about the odd stack address. There are a couple that will fail for sure. I'd have to look into my source where I wrote detailed notes to be more exact.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby jfl » Mon Nov 05, 2012 9:16 am

Rajah Lone wrote:
lp wrote:In several of the GFA commands it temporarily terminates parameters for calls...

But recompilation with your GFA CFLib is the better way. That means a specific executable for CF.

Speaking of which, and sorry for veering somewhat off-topic, but what exactly is meant by a GFA binary compiled specifically for the ColdFire? Is it optimized for the processor in the same way an AHCC/GCC-compiled binary can be, or is it still 68k machine code that needs an emulation layer?
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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:32 am

Recoded just enough to be compatible with FireTOS + CFLib. All the line-a calls fixed and all the move.b to/from the stack fixed and some other minor issues. Its not recoded for the coldfire CPU if that is what you wanted to know. See section 5.1 of CF68KLib.pdf which is easy to find with google.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby dma » Mon Nov 05, 2012 10:48 am

Many thanks again for KK Commander Rajah, it changed my (ST) life! ;)

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby jfl » Mon Nov 05, 2012 11:03 am

lp wrote:Recoded just enough to be compatible with FireTOS + CFLib. All the line-a calls fixed and all the move.b to/from the stack fixed and some other minor issues. Its not recoded for the coldfire CPU if that is what you wanted to know

Absolutely. So these GFA applications cannot bu run on the Firebee with EmuTOS, which accepts only 100% ColdFire binaries.
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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Mon Nov 05, 2012 2:32 pm

jfl wrote:Absolutely. So these GFA applications cannot bu run on the Firebee with EmuTOS, which accepts only 100% ColdFire binaries.


I don't have the original sources and Frank wrote everything in assembler. Its beyond me to fully port all of it to the coldfire. Consider ourselves lucky it works at all. :wink:

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:57 pm

Thanks Lonny for the list. As far I remember my code:

Not used. I rewrote some GEM functions (ie shel_write with GEMSYS call) :

Code: Select all

KILL\MKDIR\RMDIR
EXIST()
INSERT array|()
MAT RANG
TT? -> div/mul/mod
RC_COPY -> with mode mask
RENAME\NAME
SCRP_WRITE()
SHEL_ENVRN()
SHEL_WRITE()


Used, I can rewrite the functions easily

Code: Select all

CLOSE [#x]
CHDIR
APPL_FIND()/RSRC_LOAD()/FORM_ALERT()


Used very often, and difficult to bypass.

Code: Select all

SPACE$()/STRING$(x,x&)
CHR$()
str$=str$+"x"
VAL()/VAL?()


That would be insteresting to buy a Firebee, finaly... Has Medusa totaly sold its Firebee cards? or someone have to wait for a next production?

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Mon Nov 05, 2012 9:04 pm

I forgot about this video I made: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHw7t7UGKmI
Note: View at 720p full screen or its unreadable.
Recorded on Mac ARanyM

It shows that its not so hard to get multiple builds of the same project. However, one has to abandon all the old GFA tools. :wink:

Far as I know there are some firebee boards left, but not many.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Fri Nov 23, 2012 7:06 pm

I'm still not sure if the odd stack address is good or bad when calling an OS function. However, it can cause suboptimal execution time, just as it would on an 060.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Dark Willow » Fri Nov 23, 2012 7:18 pm

lp wrote:I forgot about this video I made: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHw7t7UGKmI
Note: View at 720p full screen or its unreadable.
Recorded on Mac ARanyM

It shows that its not so hard to get multiple builds of the same project. However, one has to abandon all the old GFA tools. :wink:

Far as I know there are some firebee boards left, but not many.


OT I know, but I thought the idea was to build Firebee's in batches, once so many orders had been obtained? I'm hoping to get a Firebee in the future (unless a TT060 project actually happens), but it'll probably be at least a year as right now I'm saving up to fund my MA. Hope I don't miss the boat :(
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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby lp » Sat Nov 24, 2012 7:39 am

They did. That's how the first batch of was made. What happens when those are all sold remains to be seen. :wink:
Last edited by lp on Tue Dec 11, 2012 8:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Fixes on my GEM applications

Postby Rajah Lone » Sat Dec 08, 2012 9:54 pm

@Lonny: you are right, recompilation is strongly advised with your ColdFire version of GBE and compiler/linker.

I received my FireBee yesterday. Some tests: DGEM and Teenage Queen Reloaded has a stop/crash and alert "disquett voll" or somethine like that when just after writing their INF files. I think it's the CLOSE #1 that fails.

The Teenage Queen was recompiled with your ColdFire version, same source (except compiler directives like $A $O $F...), and the crash disappears.

There is other change that I must inquire: default path for saved games is corrupted in the recompiled version.

I will migrate my developpements on the FireBee: speed and large screen. It was cool on the MegaST4 monochrome , but not efficient.

Thanks for your very good work and advises.


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