SymbOS Help Needed on PCW 8256

Started by Starglider, 01:52, 02 November 20

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Hi, I've been hoping to make a video about SymbOS on the Amstrad PCW. It's been requested by a few people. Unfortunately I'm seeing some issues and wonder if anyone can help with any of these things? Unfortunately no reply from the developer via PM.

  • Several provided programs won't open due to lack of memory. SymbOS states it's compatible with the PCW 8256 (256KB). Once loaded to the desktop it shows 77KB RAM free. Apps that won't open included: Tetris, SymAmp, Bubble, and a couple more. It's totally fair enough if they're not meant to work, I just want to know if I'm doing something wrong. FWIW they are the only and first app I try to load on a clean boot with no other apps or widgets open.
  • Is Speech meant to work on the PCW? Again it would be incredible, so I guess maybe it's not meant to work, but it is provided and does load up. But typing a word then pressing SAY or SPEAK does nothing apart from sometimes make the Gotek LED turn on until I press SPEAK again.
  • Where could I find a .DSK file with compatible videos (.VID) to try in SymVideo? Or shouldn't I expect there to be enough memory to load a video on the PCW?
  • I see no Print option in Notepad. Is there no way to print docs then?
This is probably largely my fault for not having an 8512, but thanks anyway!
Starglider aka Perifractic 

Amstrad PCW8256 with Gotek & HD Drive B



You might have too much RAM for Tetris.   Some progs might need to test to see if there's enough RAM, but the test may assume there's max 64k, which would be the normal for the PCW.   Actual available usually about 61k.   So maybe 77k looks like 13k or something.  If you can do that, try getting RAM down to below 64k first?

I'm pretty sure NOTHING can make the std PCW speak, it's got a crude beeper ONLY.   You MIGHT be able to do something with something like the dktronics sound module, or the speech unit?   Maybe attempts to communicate with something like that are causing the Gotek to flash?

Can't comment on the other two points.

Geoff - totally a Command Prompt person.


Speech! was released for the CPC and various other home computers but not for the PCW :(


Quote from: Starglider on 01:52, 02 November 20

  • I see no Print option in Notepad. Is there no way to print docs then?
Developer probably assumed that nobody uses printing in 2020 on 8 bit computers IIRC.

For speech look up the LambdaSpeak III thread. Maybe there can (or is) be a PcW version (in future)? --> Get the revolutionary FutureOS (Update: 2022.03.09) --> Get the RSX-ROM for LambdaSpeak :-) (Updated: 2021.12.26)

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