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Adapter to use Everdrive GG on Master System
Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 8:56 am
Last edited by asper on Mon May 20, 2019 8:18 am; edited 1 time in total
Hi guys, will it be possible to use an everdrive gg inside a real master system re-routing the correct pins (more than 20 i suppose) ? If so i will try to build an adapter (i already have the connectors to do it). The redirection pinout can be found here: https://consolingmyself.co.uk/post/18692678762/retrode-sms-gg-plug-in-adapter-pi...

I read that GG games cannot be played on a real SMS because of the color numbers (and probably other stuff) but what about everdrive GG SMS games ?

Here they are some pics if the site will go offiline:




Please Someone let me know that, Thank you :)
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Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 9:30 am
Yes, but the connector is hard to get (only from a dead GG).
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Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 9:33 am
Maxim wrote
Yes, but the connector is hard to get (only from a dead GG).

FANTASTIC ! THANK YOU ! I already found the connector, now my real problem is to find a suitable Master System Cartridge "virgin" PCB where to solder the GG connector... do you have gerber files for it Maxim ?
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Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 11:07 am
It's a standard pin spacing (0.1" I think) so should be easy to make.
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Post Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 8:19 pm
Maxim wrote
It's a standard pin spacing (0.1" I think) so should be easy to make.


I found this already-made project by the great Charles MacDonald:
https://www.pcbway.com/project/shareproject/W53454ASI17_SMS_to_GG_cartridge_adap...

I will get one and test, I hope the pinout is the same as above :)

I really would like to have a valid alternative to avoid buying an (expensive!) SMS Everdrive.


EDIT: well... I just found this :P
http://www.smspower.org/forums/15587-GGToSMSAdapter

And this useful list (GG games running in SMS mode): http://www.smspower.org/Tags/SMS-GG
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Post Posted: Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:45 am
asper wrote
I found this already-made project by the great Charles MacDonald


I cast a vote to erect a bronze statue of him in the Town Square. Along with Maxim and Bock, of course. ;)

Quote

I really would like to have a valid alternative to avoid buying an (expensive!) SMS Everdrive.


Me too, looking forward to how this progresses.
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Post Posted: Sat Jun 01, 2019 10:50 am
segasonicfan wrote
asper wrote
I found this already-made project by the great Charles MacDonald


I cast a vote for us to erect a bronze statue of him in the Town Square. Along with Maxim and Bock, of course. ;)

Quote

I really would like to have a valid alternative to avoid buying an (expensive!) SMS Everdrive.


Me too, looking forward to how this progresses.

The connector has arrived, waiting for the pcbs. If this will work I Will have 3 pcbs spare to give out if someome wants them (without the gg cart connector but probably with resistors and led included/presoldered).
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Post Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:39 pm
Hardware build! It starts the gg everdrive OS menu but it hangs loading games (gg and sms) with a central black rectangle; the gg led (meaning "it won't work on sms") is always turned on :(

Any hint about how to bypass the gg check on the gg everdrive? Any pin shortcut?
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Post Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:47 pm
I'd assume the GG Everdrive would use either the file extension or ROM header to determine the state of the /GG pin on its output. But your adaptor should ignore that anyway?
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 5:36 am
Maxim wrote
I'd assume the GG Everdrive would use either the file extension or ROM header to determine the state of the /GG pin on its output. But your adaptor should ignore that anyway?

I don't know how gg everdrive works and i suppose the adapter just "read" the status Without any modification. Is There a way to "disable" the gg pin?
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:22 am
There is a pin on the GG cartridge which tells the GG to run in GG or SMS mode. On a Master System there's no way to support GG mode so there's no need to collect that pin to anything.

The issue here is presumably nothing to do with that or the Everdrive "detecting" the system is not a GG, it's most likely just using some GG functionality (likely ports 0-6) which has some other unintended effect. It may well be the game doing that - can you try just loading an SMS ROM on the GG Everdrive to rule that out?
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:27 am
Maxim wrote
There is a pin on the GG cartridge which tells the GG to run in GG or SMS mode. On a Master System there's no way to support GG mode so there's no need to collect that pin to anything.

The issue here is presumably nothing to do with that or the Everdrive "detecting" the system is not a GG, it's most likely just using some GG functionality (likely ports 0-6) which has some other unintended effect. It may well be the game doing that - can you try just loading an SMS ROM on the GG Everdrive to rule that out?



Well I tried to load some gg and sms roms: all of them give the same result (black rectangule while loading) but now the cartridge+adapter is rejected with a "software error" message and I am not able to load the everdrive OS anymore. Tried to reflash some other game with the game gear (the everdrive still works with it) but always "software error" and I do not know what to do (I also tried to reformat the SD card FAT32 without any changes).

Do you have any hint Maxim ?

EDIT:
I just tried to flash some BIOS and with some of them the cartridge is totally bypassed and the original console bios starts without the "software error" message (I am using a sega master system 2 with alex kidd preloaded).

Now I suppose the problem is something flashed in the everdrive but I am not able to find 1 game or other rom which brings me to the OS menu (I am flashing using my game gear).
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:10 am
Ive just built one of the adapters too. I modified the board slightly and added mounting holes for the connector to screw into, just to add a bit of extra support.

If i use my GG ever drive on it the menu comes up but the colours are a off, presumably due to the game gear having extra colour bits for the extra colour depth and the SMS not. There are also 2 black bands that span the width of the screen, i assume these are to do with the difference in screen resolution between the consoles. This is confirmed by the fact the GG mode led is also lit.

If i select a rom to load i get the same black rectangle.. which is the usual menu that lets you load and start, load only or hex view the file. Its black due to the colour issues as above. If you click button 1 itll start to load the rom. It loads and runs a sms game properly from there and the GG mode LED goes out.

As for your "software error" message.. its probably due to dirty cart contacts. Clean the connector pins and itll probably come right.
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Post Posted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:19 am
wasup wrote
Ive just built one of the adapters too. I modified the board slightly and added mounting holes for the connector to screw into, just to add a bit of extra support.

If i use my GG ever drive on it the menu comes up but the colours are a off, presumably due to the game gear having extra colour bits for the extra colour depth and the SMS not. There are also 2 black bands that span the width of the screen, i assume these are to do with the difference in screen resolution between the consoles. This is confirmed by the fact the GG mode led is also lit.

If i select a rom to load i get the same black rectangle.. which is the usual menu that lets you load and start, load only or hex view the file. Its black due to the colour issues as above. If you click button 1 itll start to load the rom. It loads and runs a sms game properly from there and the GG mode LED goes out.

As for your "software error" message.. its probably due to dirty cart contacts. Clean the connector pins and itll probably come right.


Great ! I had your same "false" colors but I did not think about the selection menu ! Fantastic !

Unfortunately even cleaning with isopropilic alchool i still get "software error" while a friend's of mine everdrive is working... my everdrive is working fine in my game gear,,, I really don't know what to do ! I got that error after flashing something (maybe a game gear rom?) to the everdrive. Please let me know if you manage to think to another solution for me, thank you very much !
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Post Posted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 10:22 pm
Last edited by asper on Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:25 am; edited 1 time in total
asper wrote
wasup wrote
Ive just built one of the adapters too. I modified the board slightly and added mounting holes for the connector to screw into, just to add a bit of extra support.

If i use my GG ever drive on it the menu comes up but the colours are a off, presumably due to the game gear having extra colour bits for the extra colour depth and the SMS not. There are also 2 black bands that span the width of the screen, i assume these are to do with the difference in screen resolution between the consoles. This is confirmed by the fact the GG mode led is also lit.

If i select a rom to load i get the same black rectangle.. which is the usual menu that lets you load and start, load only or hex view the file. Its black due to the colour issues as above. If you click button 1 itll start to load the rom. It loads and runs a sms game properly from there and the GG mode LED goes out.

As for your "software error" message.. its probably due to dirty cart contacts. Clean the connector pins and itll probably come right.


Great ! I had your same "false" colors but I did not think about the selection menu ! Fantastic !

Unfortunately even cleaning with isopropilic alchool i still get "software error" while a friend's of mine everdrive is working... my everdrive is working fine in my game gear,,, I really don't know what to do ! I got that error after flashing something (maybe a game gear rom?) to the everdrive. Please let me know if you manage to think to another solution for me, thank you very much !

I finally solved the problem! It was really hard to spot but a pin/spring of the game gear female connector was totally broken (the 7th of the outside line); it was probably damaged in the 1st tests I made. I repaired it with a piece of a resistor leg and now it is working just like described above by wasup !

Thank You all.
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 1:03 am
Good work! Glad you got it going in the end
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:06 am
Where did you get the cart connector from?
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 6:16 am
Last edited by asper on Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:28 am; edited 3 times in total
wasup wrote
Good work! Glad you got it going in the end

Here they are pictures of my home made adapter created using an original sacrifical Master System cartiridge.

To obtain it using the Charles MacDonald's PCB you just need to cut the front part of the cartridge shell with a 6.3 cm wide (X), 1.4 cm height (Y) and 0.7-0.8 cm deep (Z) cut just as in the pictures below (pictures are also attached to this message - note also the broken pin replacement, it should be PIN32).

Height (Y) must be no more than 1.4 cm to allow the connector to "rest" on the shell margin (X) to make it more stable.





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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 7:26 am
Last edited by asper on Fri Aug 16, 2019 11:30 am; edited 1 time in total
Enforcer wrote
Where did you get the cart connector from?

I found it on ebay.

I just found a problem: using an original Olympic Gold Game Gear cartridge I got the "software error" message again (the everdrive gg is still working) but that game should be Master System compatible (if i flash it using the everdrive it works fine). Can someone (wasup?) test the connector with an original cartridge and show me the error ? I suspect the pin i replaced is in some way misplaced.

Anyway here they are some pics of the everdrige gg running with our adapter :)



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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 8:00 am
The Game Gear SMS mode games are not accepted by the BIOS. Apparently the Everdrive GG boot ROM has a Master System header (it may well be identical between GG and SMS).
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 9:00 am
Maxim wrote
The Game Gear SMS mode games are not accepted by the BIOS. Apparently the Everdrive GG boot ROM has a Master System header (it may well be identical between GG and SMS).

You mean "software error" is still "normal" using sms-compatible original game cartridges? (This will mean my broken pin fix is working fine)

If it is normal do You think using an older sms bios (ex. using a master system 1) will work (in My tests i used a master system 2)?
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 10:18 am
I'm afraid no Western Master System will accept them
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 12:38 pm
kusfo wrote
I'm afraid no Western Master System will accept them

What is the exact reason ?
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 12:39 pm
Because of western Bios always check for the header. Only no Bios machines (Mark III), or Japanese Bios will accept the games.
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 12:44 pm
kusfo wrote
Because of western Bios always check for the header. Only no Bios machines (Mark III), or Japanese Bios will accept the games.

So My pin fix is working :)
Thank You really much man!

Edit:
Maybe Charles MacDonald was using a jap sms or markIII:
http://www.smspower.org/forums/15587-GGToSMSAdapter
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 2:25 pm
Well, we could create a ROM that you can boot with your EverDrive GG and keeps code running in RAM, asking you to replace your GG cartridge and press 1/START key to continue (that would jump to $0000).
That would circumvent the BIOS check, but of course only SMS mode GG games will run correctly.
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 2:35 pm
sverx wrote
Well, we could create a ROM that you can boot with your EverDrive GG and keeps code running in RAM, asking you to replace your GG cartridge and press 1/START key to continue (that would jump to $0000).
That would circumvent the BIOS check, but of course only SMS mode GG games will run correctly.

Superb!!! I will test it for sure! Are You able to compile such a rom?

Edit: another thing to do should be replace the font color in ram to make the text visible on sms using the everdrive (black text with black background problem described above).
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 3:21 pm
source included - I hope it works!
GG-boot.zip (3.54 KB)
GG boot (updated!)

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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 4:36 pm
sverx wrote
source included - I hope it works!

Magnifico! I hope to test it in the Next 24 hours! Thank you.

Is this also fix the text color problem?
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 4:49 pm
asper wrote
Is this also fix the text color problem?


it can't - we should hack the EverDrive GG 'firmware' ROM to fix that.

edit: also, this is a better version - it has a SEGA ROM header, in case the EverDrive GG tries to detect if it's a Master System ROM.
GG-boot.zip (3.75 KB)
GG boot (with ROM header)

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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 4:57 pm
sverx wrote
asper wrote
Is this also fix the text color problem?


it can't - we should hack the EverDrive GG 'firmware' ROM to fix that.

edit: also, this is a better version - it has a SEGA ROM header, in case the EverDrive GG tries to detect if it's a Master System ROM.

Thanks! Is it possible to edit everdrive gg firmware and flash it Without bricking it?
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 5:00 pm
I actually meant the file you downloaded from Krikzz website and had put on the SD card, not the CPLD firmware.
That file is actually a ROM, as it gets executed by the console's Z80. I'm sure many can help you hack that, as it's just a palette fix.
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 19, 2019 5:04 pm
sverx wrote
I actually meant the file you downloaded from Krikzz website and had put on the SD card, not the CPLD firmware.
That file is actually a ROM, as it gets executed by the console's Z80. I'm sure many can help you hack that, as it's just a palette fix.

Well, Yes i got it (i wrot e firmware, i should say OS) but it can also be flashed as system OS but i don't know if everdrive gg checks for OS hacks when flashing it. Are You aware about some of those checks?
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Post Posted: Sat Jul 20, 2019 1:54 pm
sverx wrote
asper wrote
Is this also fix the text color problem?


it can't - we should hack the EverDrive GG 'firmware' ROM to fix that.

edit: also, this is a better version - it has a SEGA ROM header, in case the EverDrive GG tries to detect if it's a Master System ROM.

You are the boss man !


I also tested another non-sms compatible GG rom (Chess Master) and it gives black screen as you predicted.

If someone is able to patch the palette here are the Everdrive GG OS9 asm palette details (you can find the .inc file attached - obtained with this tool: http://jmimu.free.fr/mastertileconverter/):

Palette_Start:
.db $30,$3f,$37,$3b,$0f,$0b,$00,$2f,$06,$0b,$01,$3d,$38,$0c,$08,$3c
.db $3c,$3f,$05,$0b,$03,$02,$00,$30,$3c,$0c,$0f,$08,$3a,$36,$01,$0a
Palette_End:


OS9 file can be found here: http://krikzz.com/pub/support/master-everdrive/v1/os-bin/

The background and text colors are black so i think the colors need to be changed are the ones pointed out by the red arrows (maybe just 1 of them):


... but I do not know how to substitute the palette colors...
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 28, 2019 7:21 pm
Reading some stuff mainly here: http://www.smspower.org/maxim/HowToProgram/Palette I managed to find the palette inside os-v9.mso [http://krikzz.com/pub/support/master-everdrive/v1/os-bin/] at offset 0x5950 (and following 32 bytes I suppose);


Here how they appears on MEKA:

0x0A (dark yellow)
0x15 (grey)
0x3F (white)
(also 0x00 is black but i did not identify what is the exact palette offset used)

I changed the colors and the renamed the file .sms and .gg and tested it; the file is flashing but colors do not change so I think the new file is not loaded or something like else otherwise I should see different text/background colors... isn't it ? I do not want to try t flash the .mso file to avoid bricking my Everdrive GG.

Also MEKA uses/shows a different palette if the file is renamed .sms or .gg:

but i was not able to find a full GG color palette explanation (with colors); I suppose it is stored in the second part, from offset 0x5070 and following 64 bytes.

If someone can help me digging out that problem we will have a full Master System compatible Everdrive GG (with correct colors when inside OS).
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 28, 2019 8:13 pm
The GG palette is 64 bytes holding 32 12-bit colours. Loading the SMS palette just causes it to be misinterpreted in GG mode.

Is the OS the same for both SMS and GG?

The data above looks like the SMS palette is at $5943 (32 bytes) and the GG one at $5963 (64 bytes). However I don't know how it detects it is a GG - maybe that fails in Meka.
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Post Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 5:14 am
Maxim wrote
The GG palette is 64 bytes holding 32 12-bit colours. Loading the SMS palette just causes it to be misinterpreted in GG mode.

Is the OS the same for both SMS and GG?

The data above looks like the SMS palette is at $5943 (32 bytes) and the GG one at $5963 (64 bytes). However I don't know how it detects it is a GG - maybe that fails in Meka.

Yes the OS file is the same for gg and sms. Maybe i need to fix some rom checksum?
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Post Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:23 pm
The attached patch should force the Everdrive into SMS mode.
os-v9.ips (17 B)

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Post Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 8:32 am
Calindro wrote
The attached patch should force the Everdrive into SMS mode.


FANTASTIC ! YOU ARE MY MYTH !

I applied the patch with Lunar IPS, renamed the .mso to .sms and loaded it into my Game Gear and SMS, here are the results:

Game Gear:


And, finally, Master System:


So the patch WORKS ! (even if both adapter leds remain on - only one should be on in sms mode).


Now a problem remains: when loading a ROM file (after switching to the patched OS rom) the Everdrive GG remains "hanged" at "Erase..." so it does not flash a new ROM. I suppose I need to flash the patched OS instead of running it as a .sms file but I fear to brick the Everdrive GG... any information about software patches checks by the Everdrive ?
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 31, 2019 8:46 am
asper wrote
So the patch WORKS ! (even if both adapter leds remain on - only one should be on in sms mode).

It only forces the OS to execute SMS mode code.

asper wrote
Now a problem remains: when loading a ROM file (after switching to the patched OS rom) the Everdrive GG remains "hanged" at "Erase..." so it does not flash a new ROM. I suppose I need to flash the patched OS instead of running it as a .sms file but I fear to brick the Everdrive GG... any information about software patches checks by the Everdrive ?

During "Erase..." the loaded ROM gets erased. So you erase the code that is currently being run if you have loaded the OS as a ROM. So it makes sense that it gets stuck in that case.
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 31, 2019 8:57 am
So if you want to make a secondary loader it needs to run from RAM. It would be good to get some assurance about how we might safely make custom OSes - and if there's a way to recover from a bad image.
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Post Posted: Wed Jul 31, 2019 3:46 pm
Maxim wrote
So if you want to make a secondary loader it needs to run from RAM. It would be good to get some assurance about how we might safely make custom OSes - and if there's a way to recover from a bad image.

To recover from a possible brick it should be possible to directly flash the eeprom/flash if someone with an everdrive gg has the hardware flasher. It should be done once, just to see if the everdrive will run with a flashed OS.
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Post Posted: Sat Aug 03, 2019 4:28 pm
Maxim wrote
So if you want to make a secondary loader it needs to run from RAM. It would be good to get some assurance about how we might safely make custom OSes - and if there's a way to recover from a bad image.


Found a way to recover! If someone has something more to patch add it here and I will test in the next few days.
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Post Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 1:42 pm
Last edited by zeus074 on Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:17 pm; edited 1 time in total
Hi, I tried the patched file for the everdrive gg to master system and it works properly, it loads the roms and finally you can see the message in the window!!
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Post Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 2:12 pm
Thanks to asper for the pcb :)

Here is my system.
IMG_3927.jpg (410.41 KB)
Asper's pcb
IMG_3927.jpg
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Master system
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  • Joined: 25 Nov 2015
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Post Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:16 pm
zeus074 wrote
Thanks to asper for the pcb :)

Here is my system.

Great My friend! Thank you for the test.
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Post Posted: Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:31 pm
Maxim wrote
So if you want to make a secondary loader it needs to run from RAM. It would be good to get some assurance about how we might safely make custom OSes - and if there's a way to recover from a bad image.

Now that we tested it and we have a way to recover (press Up+A+B while the system is booting with the everdrive inserted to execute cart reserve OS copy) is there a way to have a secondary loader run from ram?
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Post Posted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 6:37 am
If there a recovery option then you don't need to execute from RAM. The first steps are to make a file system reader and loader, probably based on the released sources. Krikzz released source to an (FAT16 only) version of the OS, maybe he'd release the current version if we asked nicely?
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Post Posted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 3:14 pm
Maxim wrote
If there a recovery option then you don't need to execute from RAM. The first steps are to make a file system reader and loader, probably based on the released sources. Krikzz released source to an (FAT16 only) version of the OS, maybe he'd release the current version if we asked nicely?

Just uploaded, i hope it is v9: http://krikzz.com/pub/support/var/SMS-OS.zip
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Post Posted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 6:05 pm
Sources say it is V6.
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