Pasti merge tool for dumping track ranges separately and merging into one STX

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rainwarrior
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Pasti merge tool for dumping track ranges separately and merging into one STX

Post by rainwarrior »

So, I have an Atari ST with only one disk drive and no hard drive. For whatever reason the Pasti tool won't recognize a completed transfer disk in any of my PCs / PC floppy drives (tried a few different machines, ranging from modern laptop to Windows 98 pentium 2).

So, I could start up a RAMdisk, do the dump to file on the RAMdisk for tracks 0-39, copy that to a disk, and then I could read that file easily on my PCs, even though I can't use the PC Pasti tool. Then I repeat again for 40-79.

Now I have two STX files that I just need to merge the tracks from to make a complete dump.

So in case this is useful to anyone else, here is the python script to merge tracks from multiple partial STX dumps into a single file:
stx_merge.py

Related tool that just spits out all the information found in an STX file:
stx_dump.py


I did manage to make an STX dump of Read & Rhyme this way.
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Re: Pasti merge tool for dumping track ranges separately and merging into one STX

Post by ijor »

rainwarrior wrote: Thu Jun 17, 2021 11:42 pm So, I have an Atari ST with only one disk drive and no hard drive. For whatever reason the Pasti tool won't recognize a completed transfer disk in any of my PCs / PC floppy drives (tried a few different machines, ranging from modern laptop to Windows 98 pentium 2).
How did you format the Transfer Disk? Did you initialize the transfer disk correctly as described in "PastiTransfer.txt"?
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rainwarrior
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Re: Pasti merge tool for dumping track ranges separately and merging into one STX

Post by rainwarrior »

I followed the instructions, yes.

I formatted the disk with "format /T:80 /N:9 a:" on my PC. I could read and write files to that with my PC and have them work on my Atari ST. (That's also how I got PASTI.PRG running in the first place.)

I then used the Pasti PC tool to initialize the disk. That seemed to work, because PASTI.PRG would reject it unless I had done this step first.

After running PASTI.PRG and filling the transfer disk with data, I return the disk to the PC and... the PC tool just tells me it's not a valid transfer disk. I tried this many times with slight variations on the order/method in which I did things, with several different floppy disks, and nothing worked.

So, with no feedback from the tool about what it didn't like about the transfer disk, I had no way to proceed with that method. Like, I'm pretty sure I could make a valid .ST dump of the transfer disk with other imaging programs on my PC, but since the Pasti PC tool has to read directly from the drive and won't take an image file instead, I wouldn't be able to do anything with that. Not having any information about the transfer disk data format, there's not much I could try there. (Let me know if it would help to send you such an .ST image of the resulting transfer disk.)


On the other hand I found I could bypass the "transfer disk" mechanism by making smaller dumps of track groups, and transfering the resulting STX files that are small enough to fit on a floppy. That's why I wrote this merge tool.
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Re: Pasti merge tool for dumping track ranges separately and merging into one STX

Post by ijor »

rainwarrior wrote: Sat Jun 19, 2021 2:32 am I formatted the disk with "format /T:80 /N:9 a:" on my PC. I could read and write files to that with my PC and have them work on my Atari ST. (That's also how I got PASTI.PRG running in the first place.) I then used the Pasti PC tool to initialize the disk. That seemed to work, because PASTI.PRG would reject it unless I had done this step first.

After running PASTI.PRG and filling the transfer disk with data, I return the disk to the PC and... the PC tool just tells me it's not a valid transfer disk. I tried this many times with slight variations on the order/method in which I did things, with several different floppy disks, and nothing worked.

(Let me know if it would help to send you such an .ST image of the resulting transfer disk.)
I haven't used the pasti transfer tools for ages. Yes, please, if it is not too much trouble, an image of the problematic transfer disk might be helpful. But I currently don't have a setup to actually test it. Do you need to perform more transfers? If you do then I'll try to look into this shortly.
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Re: Pasti merge tool for dumping track ranges separately and merging into one STX

Post by rainwarrior »

Apologies, I restarted the process from scratch today and everything worked this time.

When using MAKEDISK to dump one of the transfer disks I made previously, it gave a warning that it was infected with the "Ghost Virus (Original)". Apparently this had gotten onto the disk I initially copied PASTI.PRG to and it was corrupting every transfer disk. After reformatting and re-copying PASTI.PRG the process worked.

Not sure where the virus snuck in, but all seems to be well now. Sorry for the false alarm.
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