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SEAN McNAMARADATE BY
1 SEPTEMBER 2017
(SOLID) STATE OF THE NATION 2017
Oz KFest 2017
         
        
         
        
         
Who am I?
Computer user since 1980 (TRS-80)

Apple ][ user since 1982

Mac user since 1984

Mac/Apple consultant since 1997

Apple ][ hoarder collector since 1998

WOzFest host since 2015

Contacts:

europlus@europlus.zone

europlus on a2c.chat

@apple2europlus on Twitter

https://the.europlus.zone/
Fair use of copyrighted material for non-profit
educational purposes is claimed for this presentation.
My Retro Solid State Story
Semi Virtual Diskette

Focus Card with IDE to Compact
Flash

CFFA3000

SCSI Card Reader

SCSI to Compact Flash and SD

Floppy Emu

UNISDISK Air
Why Solid State?
Vintage magnetic media can
fail (bit rot, mould, physical
damage)

Mechanical drives can fail

Access to media from modern
computers

Difficulty sourcing new media

Convenience/flexibility
Types of Solid State Storage
for Retro Computers
Compact Flash

SD and its variants

USB

Servers, other devices acting as
storage devices

Custom devices

I’m technically including some
mechanical media
Types of Solid State Solutions
for Retro Computers
Device emulators

Interface adaptors

Server-style solutions
Device emulators/
controllers
Semi Virtual Diskette

CFFA/CFFA3000

UNISDISK/UNISDISK Air

Focus Card

MicroDrive/Turbo

Classic IDE

X/Profile

Smartport Virtual Hard Drive

Audio Sources

Floppy Emu
Semi-Virtual Diskette (SVD)
Originally designed for TRS-80

Disk drive emulator, disk
images loaded over serial link
from modern computer

256KB built-in memory

Apple ][ support through
adaptor cable

Low availability originally, no
longer available

http://www.rothfus.com/SVD/
CFFA3000
Hard drive, SmartPort and two-drive floppy interface emulation

On screen controls

CF and USB storage

Optional external 

switches to cycle 

through disk images

Difficult to get 

(2017 run on the cards)

NB: CFFA1 is a version 

for the Apple 1

http://dreher.net/?s=projects/CFforAppleII&c=projects/
CFforAppleII/main.php
UNISDISK/UNISDISK Air
Emulates 5¼" and
SmartPort devices

UNISDISK Air Series uses
Toshiba FlashAir SD card to
incorporate a web server for
image transfer and
management

http://tulip-house.ddo.jp/
DIGITAL/english.html
Focus card
An early (apparently the first) 

IDE controller for slotted 

Apple ][s (][, ][+, //e, IIgs)

44 pin IDE connector

Block level access to media

Optional rails to hold 

2.5" drive in place

Can power 2.5" drive

Not strictly solid state, but often used with an IDE to CF adaptor

http://16sector.com/shop/featured/focus-ide-hd-controller/
MicroDrive/Turbo
IDE controller for the Apple IIgs

40 pin IDE connector

Dual IDE support

Block level access to media

Supports DMA

Includes a dual CF adaptor

Requires ROM1 or ROM3

Not strictly solid state, but most often used with an IDE to CF adaptor

http://www.reactivemicro.com/product_info.php?products_id=34
Classic IDE
IDE controller for the Apple ][, 

Apple //e and Apple IIgs

40 pin IDE connector

Dual IDE support

Block level access to media

Supports DMA

Not strictly solid state, but most often used with an IDE to CF adaptor

http://tecnobytescc.blogspot.com.au/p/classic-ide-for-apple-ii.html
X/Profile
Replaces proprietary drive interface
device in Profile drive cases with
Compact Flash or IDE drive

http://sigmasevensystems.com/xprofile
Smartport Virtual Hard
Drive
SmartPort device for
mounting hard drive images
from USB storage

Very hard to get a hold of

http://pcedric3.free.fr/
SmartportVHD/
Audio Sources
Use any audio source with
digitised cassette-style data
in place of cassette drive

Cheap and easy, but not
particularly fast
Floppy Emu
Originally designed as 

floppy drive emulator for 

early Macs

Firmware is upgradable for enhanced functionality and additional device
emulation

Emulates an HD20 on external floppy port of compatible early Mac
models (sizes larger than 20MB supported)

Emulates both 5¼" and 3½" floppy drives for the Apple ][

Emulates SmartPort hard drives on the Apple IIc/IIgs

Liron support+ProDOS 2.4.1 brings mass storage to pre-//e machines

https://www.bigmessowires.com/floppy-emu/
Floppy Emu Updates Since
Oz KFest 2015
Date Update
25 April 15 ROM 03 issues resolved
7 May 15 5¼" disk read support
21 May 15 5¼" disk write support
19 June 15 SmartPort HD support for Apple IIc/IIgs
13 July 15 SmartPort Firmware Upgrade
16 July 15 Universal Adapter for Floppy Emu to improve Model A Apple II support
24 July 15 Prepared GS/OS v6.0.2 image for Floppy Emu users
18 November 15 Minor update to firmware
4 January 16 Model B released
30 January 16 Minor update to firmware
10 February 16 Firmware update to support IIc+
23 March 16 Firmware update to improve Mac HD functionality
4 June 16 10,000 DB-19 connectors arrive
25 January 17 Support for Apple /// described
26 January 17 Firmware update
20 July 17 Liron support (SmartPort for non-IIgs/IIc/IIc+, including HD)
11 August 17 Firmware update with SmartPort improvements
18 August 17 Describes Floppy Emu use on Bandai Pippin and Bondi Blue iMac
Interface Adaptors
Allow old devices/cards/cases to use
solid state media in place of spinning
disks

Compact Flash to IDE (40 and 44 pin)

Compact Flash to SCSI

SCSI2SD is popular
Server-style Solutions
A2SERVER

http://ivanx.com/a2server/

Apple Games Server

http://asciiexpress.net/
gameserver/
CiderPress

Disk image management

http://a2ciderpress.com/

DSKalyzer

Cross-platform command line disk image manager

http://octalyzer.com/dskalyzer/

Asimov Images, info

ftp://ftp.apple.asimov.net/pub/apple_II/

What is the IIgs? Images, info

http://www.whatisthe2gs.apple2.org.za

Internet Archive Images, info

https://archive.org/details/softwarelibrary_apple

Brutal Deluxe BenchmarkeD Apple IIgs ProDOS benchmarking

http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/products/apple2gs/benchmarked.html

BenchmarkeD Results Google Sheet
Resources
Caveats
Compatible file formats

Block level vs disk image use

Some brands/sizes cause issues

Backup!
Acknowledgements
Andrew Roughan, Steve Kazoullis and the other
organisers of Oz KFest 2017

Tony Diaz for coming all the way from Up Over
with such an extensive collection of gear and
knowledge to share

The developers of modern solid state solutions for
retrocomputers – bringing new life to old
computers
A FEW PHOTOS FROM Oz KFest 2015
17-19 APRIL 2015 – KEYSBOROUGH, VIC, AUSTRALIA
IN MEMORIAM:
CONNER CP-2024 S/N K0DKTX
1990-2007

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Oz KFest 2017 (Solid) State of the Nation

  • 1. SEAN McNAMARADATE BY 1 SEPTEMBER 2017 (SOLID) STATE OF THE NATION 2017 Oz KFest 2017                                                
  • 2. Who am I? Computer user since 1980 (TRS-80) Apple ][ user since 1982 Mac user since 1984 Mac/Apple consultant since 1997 Apple ][ hoarder collector since 1998 WOzFest host since 2015 Contacts: europlus@europlus.zone europlus on a2c.chat @apple2europlus on Twitter https://the.europlus.zone/ Fair use of copyrighted material for non-profit educational purposes is claimed for this presentation.
  • 3. My Retro Solid State Story Semi Virtual Diskette Focus Card with IDE to Compact Flash CFFA3000 SCSI Card Reader SCSI to Compact Flash and SD Floppy Emu UNISDISK Air
  • 4. Why Solid State? Vintage magnetic media can fail (bit rot, mould, physical damage) Mechanical drives can fail Access to media from modern computers Difficulty sourcing new media Convenience/flexibility
  • 5. Types of Solid State Storage for Retro Computers Compact Flash SD and its variants USB Servers, other devices acting as storage devices Custom devices I’m technically including some mechanical media
  • 6. Types of Solid State Solutions for Retro Computers Device emulators Interface adaptors Server-style solutions
  • 7. Device emulators/ controllers Semi Virtual Diskette CFFA/CFFA3000 UNISDISK/UNISDISK Air Focus Card MicroDrive/Turbo Classic IDE X/Profile Smartport Virtual Hard Drive Audio Sources Floppy Emu
  • 8. Semi-Virtual Diskette (SVD) Originally designed for TRS-80 Disk drive emulator, disk images loaded over serial link from modern computer 256KB built-in memory Apple ][ support through adaptor cable Low availability originally, no longer available http://www.rothfus.com/SVD/
  • 9. CFFA3000 Hard drive, SmartPort and two-drive floppy interface emulation On screen controls CF and USB storage Optional external 
 switches to cycle 
 through disk images Difficult to get 
 (2017 run on the cards) NB: CFFA1 is a version 
 for the Apple 1 http://dreher.net/?s=projects/CFforAppleII&c=projects/ CFforAppleII/main.php
  • 10. UNISDISK/UNISDISK Air Emulates 5¼" and SmartPort devices UNISDISK Air Series uses Toshiba FlashAir SD card to incorporate a web server for image transfer and management http://tulip-house.ddo.jp/ DIGITAL/english.html
  • 11. Focus card An early (apparently the first) 
 IDE controller for slotted 
 Apple ][s (][, ][+, //e, IIgs) 44 pin IDE connector Block level access to media Optional rails to hold 
 2.5" drive in place Can power 2.5" drive Not strictly solid state, but often used with an IDE to CF adaptor http://16sector.com/shop/featured/focus-ide-hd-controller/
  • 12. MicroDrive/Turbo IDE controller for the Apple IIgs 40 pin IDE connector Dual IDE support Block level access to media Supports DMA Includes a dual CF adaptor Requires ROM1 or ROM3 Not strictly solid state, but most often used with an IDE to CF adaptor http://www.reactivemicro.com/product_info.php?products_id=34
  • 13. Classic IDE IDE controller for the Apple ][, 
 Apple //e and Apple IIgs 40 pin IDE connector Dual IDE support Block level access to media Supports DMA Not strictly solid state, but most often used with an IDE to CF adaptor http://tecnobytescc.blogspot.com.au/p/classic-ide-for-apple-ii.html
  • 14. X/Profile Replaces proprietary drive interface device in Profile drive cases with Compact Flash or IDE drive http://sigmasevensystems.com/xprofile
  • 15. Smartport Virtual Hard Drive SmartPort device for mounting hard drive images from USB storage Very hard to get a hold of http://pcedric3.free.fr/ SmartportVHD/
  • 16. Audio Sources Use any audio source with digitised cassette-style data in place of cassette drive Cheap and easy, but not particularly fast
  • 17. Floppy Emu Originally designed as 
 floppy drive emulator for 
 early Macs Firmware is upgradable for enhanced functionality and additional device emulation Emulates an HD20 on external floppy port of compatible early Mac models (sizes larger than 20MB supported) Emulates both 5¼" and 3½" floppy drives for the Apple ][ Emulates SmartPort hard drives on the Apple IIc/IIgs Liron support+ProDOS 2.4.1 brings mass storage to pre-//e machines https://www.bigmessowires.com/floppy-emu/
  • 18. Floppy Emu Updates Since Oz KFest 2015 Date Update 25 April 15 ROM 03 issues resolved 7 May 15 5¼" disk read support 21 May 15 5¼" disk write support 19 June 15 SmartPort HD support for Apple IIc/IIgs 13 July 15 SmartPort Firmware Upgrade 16 July 15 Universal Adapter for Floppy Emu to improve Model A Apple II support 24 July 15 Prepared GS/OS v6.0.2 image for Floppy Emu users 18 November 15 Minor update to firmware 4 January 16 Model B released 30 January 16 Minor update to firmware 10 February 16 Firmware update to support IIc+ 23 March 16 Firmware update to improve Mac HD functionality 4 June 16 10,000 DB-19 connectors arrive 25 January 17 Support for Apple /// described 26 January 17 Firmware update 20 July 17 Liron support (SmartPort for non-IIgs/IIc/IIc+, including HD) 11 August 17 Firmware update with SmartPort improvements 18 August 17 Describes Floppy Emu use on Bandai Pippin and Bondi Blue iMac
  • 19. Interface Adaptors Allow old devices/cards/cases to use solid state media in place of spinning disks Compact Flash to IDE (40 and 44 pin) Compact Flash to SCSI SCSI2SD is popular
  • 20. Server-style Solutions A2SERVER http://ivanx.com/a2server/ Apple Games Server http://asciiexpress.net/ gameserver/
  • 21. CiderPress
 Disk image management
 http://a2ciderpress.com/ DSKalyzer
 Cross-platform command line disk image manager
 http://octalyzer.com/dskalyzer/ Asimov Images, info
 ftp://ftp.apple.asimov.net/pub/apple_II/ What is the IIgs? Images, info
 http://www.whatisthe2gs.apple2.org.za Internet Archive Images, info
 https://archive.org/details/softwarelibrary_apple Brutal Deluxe BenchmarkeD Apple IIgs ProDOS benchmarking
 http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/products/apple2gs/benchmarked.html
 BenchmarkeD Results Google Sheet Resources
  • 22. Caveats Compatible file formats Block level vs disk image use Some brands/sizes cause issues Backup!
  • 23. Acknowledgements Andrew Roughan, Steve Kazoullis and the other organisers of Oz KFest 2017 Tony Diaz for coming all the way from Up Over with such an extensive collection of gear and knowledge to share The developers of modern solid state solutions for retrocomputers – bringing new life to old computers
  • 24. A FEW PHOTOS FROM Oz KFest 2015 17-19 APRIL 2015 – KEYSBOROUGH, VIC, AUSTRALIA IN MEMORIAM: CONNER CP-2024 S/N K0DKTX 1990-2007