Author Topic: How to copy copy-protected games from DSK to 3" disks via HxC  (Read 4636 times)

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Offline MaV

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Hi guys!

So, after looking through the list of Mode 0 games from my other thread, I wanted to copy a few of them from DSK-Files to real disks. I downloaded originals and transferred them to the HxC Floppy Emulator.

Most of them seem to work ok as DSK files, though Targhan didn't start on the CPC6128+ via HxC.

I built a connector for the HxC to work as a B-drive, and it works as planned. I can load programs from b, and start programs that are not fixated on drive a.

From a long time ago I remembered that Discology copies many unusual floppy formats. However, it didn't work with the three games that I've tried: Targhan, Rainbow Island, Stormlord.
Symptoms are a loading screen where the first lines look alright and the rest is nonsense, and the game won't start. Targhan executes the code of the title screen correctly but the graphics are broken.

Did I try to copy games which are evidently not transferable back to the CPC? I've read speedlock 8k is troublesome.
Shall I try another copy program? And which one is good? (The list in the wiki is long.)

Oh, I forgot: I used Discology v5.1, if that makes any difference.
« Last Edit: 13:07, 22 August 11 by MaV »
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Jase

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In the past, I have found Xexor to be VERY reliable at copying stuff. From memory, the only game I tried that it didn't copy was Knight Games. It managed the hewson games I tried fine.

Offline Gryzor

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Knight Games? Seriously? I didn't even know it was released on disk, and I thought it was quite a low-profile release to feature a complex protection system...

Offline MaV

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In the past, I have found Xexor to be VERY reliable at copying stuff.

Ok, I'll try that and see what happens.


Of course, I just want to have a back up of my original games. *cough* *cough* ;)
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Offline Gryzor

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What, you mean you don't ride your bike to the nearest seedy software shoppe any more? :D

Offline MaV

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What, you mean you don't ride your bike to the nearest seedy software shoppe any more? :D

Sadly, they don't feature CPC Software anymore. That was long ago.

But they are not seedy. They sell the newest software much cheaper than the marts. It's a Turkish shop. They say it's legit, and I trust them. ;)
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Offline TFM

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Discology should be the option of choice for copy-protected soft. Try to get the _very last_ version of if. Else just get a hack of the games.
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Offline Gryzor

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Yeah, but *what* was the last version? I've seen versions up to 7, but I doubt they're real...

Offline MaV

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Yeah, but *what* was the last version? I've seen versions up to 7, but I doubt they're real...

Version 6.0, if the cpcrulez and cpcpower websites are correct.

Anyway, I discovered late last night that it's probably the drive belt that's to blame. This one is about 4, 5 years old and hasn't seen too much use in the last years. I tested the disks with the new cpc6128+ and a new drive and found that they could not be read properly. Disks that were formatted and written to by the same drive some time ago work well.

I'll have to do tests today. *sigh*
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Offline MaV

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Ok, I tested the drives. It is not the belt after all.

I copied the disks on a CPC6128. When I wanted to test them I used them in a CPC6128 plus. The plus had troubles reading the tracks.

I replaced the belt in the 6128 and tested the same disks, everything perfect. The plus of course still won't read them.

I luckily do have a second plus drive, so I exchanged the one in the plus with the other. It still could not read the original's disks.


Should there even be a difference between those two types of drives (normal CPC's and CPC plus')?

PS: Some games still can't be copied with Discology 6.0. :(
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Offline TFM

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Yeah, but *what* was the last version? I've seen versions up to 7, but I doubt they're real...

7. something was real. I got no idea about 8.
 
EDIT: I had a version 7.x that did copy everything, but itself.
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Offline Gryzor

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I think v7 is available online.

@Mav: I think there's no difference? Does your Plus read other disks alright?

Just for the record, 4-5 years is not a long time for a belt; form my experience, I'd say it takes over ten years for the belt to go dry...

Offline MaV

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@Mav: I think there's no difference? Does your Plus read other disks alright?

Just for the record, 4-5 years is not a long time for a belt; form my experience, I'd say it takes over ten years for the belt to go dry...

Yes, the plus reads the other disks without any problems. Got to check it out with the other normal 3"-drives.

In the end, HxC on all machines is probably the way to go. /me looks at bank account and sighs.
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Offline TFM

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Just for the record, 4-5 years is not a long time for a belt; form my experience, I'd say it takes over ten years for the belt to go dry...

Very true. I found, that if you use a drive (and thereby the drive belt) more often (nearly every day), then if works for a long, long time. My first 6128's 3" floppy was running nearly 18 years with one belt. One of my "backup" CPCs with "new" drive belt needed a replacement after 2(!) years, because I never used the drive.
 
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Offline MaV

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Ok, thanks guys. I'll definitely count that out then. I would have been surprised if that were the reason, but you should never take things for granted.

I've tested all three 3"-drives that I have as 12v variant and all could read the disks, which the pluses have trouble reading. That confirms my suspicion that there's a rift between my original CPC drives (3) and the plus drives (2).

I'll probably need to test a bit more. In the end, since I don't own equipment to check the drives thoroughly (drive head and such), I guess I'll have to live with that and use separate disks for the CPC and CPC pluses.


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Offline Terje_Norway

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Re: How to copy copy-protected games from DSK to 3" disks via HxC
« Reply #15 on: 18:09, 13 September 11 »
7. something was real. I got no idea about 8.

 
EDIT: I had a version 7.x that did copy everything, but itself.
Discology v7.3 does exist :D  You can find a "complete" list of Discology versions on the following page :


http://www.theoldcomputer.com/roms/index.php?folder=Amstrad/CPC/Applications


It's unknown to me what's the big differences between v6.0 and v7.3.
Version 7.3 will probably copy more discs and copy protections I guess  ???


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Re: How to copy copy-protected games from DSK to 3" disks via HxC
« Reply #16 on: 22:18, 15 September 11 »
Hello,

Discology 7.3 is really a fake release (maybe based on the 5.0 copier, but not verified), the last one done by Meridien is 6.0+. The 'hacker" has just changed the version number of the program, probably to have something to swap...

T&J/GPA

Offline TFM

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Re: How to copy copy-protected games from DSK to 3" disks via HxC
« Reply #17 on: 02:12, 16 September 11 »
Well, in this case I really must ask myself: Why didn't the hacker use 7.2 as version number ?????????
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