Author Topic: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)  (Read 1568 times)

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Offline TynH

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CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« on: 02:41, 21 November 19 »
It seems like I finally managed to obtain one of these rare beasts. They do come up every now and then on ebay UK but little use if you have a Schneider PCW like me (no edge connector). For whatever reason they‘re surprisingly hard to find. Of course now there will be one every week for under ten quid.
Well I only had to buy an entire PCW (sans keyboard) to get one, upping my total to three now...  :picard:
No idea if the computer or CPS 8256 actually work and no practical use for the both of them either!


Madness!

Offline JonB

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #1 on: 14:28, 21 November 19 »
Well done, TynH. Next thing you know, people will start referring to you as a "collector"..  ;)

The main use for the CPS8256 in my opinion is to be able to transfer files to the PCW using KERMIT.COM. In my case it facilitated development of the uRTC software. Serial transfer is particularly important here as the 3" drives aren't to be found on a transfer PC. being able to easily get stuff onto a the PCW opens up a whole world of possibilities as you can download any CP/M software to it.

For my part I needed the serial port and hunted for ages to get one, then had to pay rather more than I'd paid for my PCW to get it. Then just when I really needed it for uRTC development, it broke down! Turned out one of the serial voltage level converters had expired.

If you've got Schneider PCWs it might be in order to build a 50 way adapter (from the Centronics tyoe connector to an edge connector) so that you can use the serial adapter on your Schneider machines. Or not - you can just use the "new" PCW as a transfer machine.
« Last Edit: 14:32, 21 November 19 by JonB »

Offline micza

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #2 on: 15:29, 29 March 20 »
I am looking for the original manual attached to this Box for Interface CPS 8256. I need a PDF (or other readable format) of this manual. This is not a Peace version ONLY newer ...

Offline TynH

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #3 on: 15:55, 29 March 20 »
Do you need it for completion‘s sake or for solving a specific problem?
Can’t help with the former since I don’t have a manual either but getting it to work isn’t all that difficult.


You should be able to find answers to most questions concerning usage in this book btw:


http://www.habisoft.com/pcwwiki/doku.php?id=es:using_the_amstrad_word_processor



« Last Edit: 16:02, 29 March 20 by TynH »

Offline micza

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #4 on: 16:06, 29 March 20 »
I just wanted to know more about the operation (instructions and commands, maybe subroutines ... etc.) of this device. I use the KERMIT program for communication and it seems to me very crude, too simple. It does not always transfer all files. Maybe you have some extended instructions for KERMIT, or you know other programs to use with CPS 8256 ??? I am looking for a list of interface commands - I know that the booklet attached to the box was very extensive and interesting ...

Offline micza

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #5 on: 16:10, 29 March 20 »
The book you provided seems very interesting and will certainly answer many of my questions ... Thank you very much!

Offline TynH

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #6 on: 16:51, 29 March 20 »
The CPS8256 defaults to 9600 baud but in my experience this doesn’t always make for a reliable connection. You could try dropping to 7200 (“set baud 7200“ on the kermit command line). Remember to do the same on the other end! Kermit might be crude by today’s standards but it’s certainly a vast improvement over the free mail232 application or xmodem which I had to use with my Notepad.


Some hints here:
http://cpm.jenandcal.familyds.org/cpm/mirrors/www.cirsovius.de/CPM/pcw-en.html


(unfortunately mostly in German)


A good kermit manual should also come in handy!


ftp://kermit.columbia.edu/kermit/a/cpkerm.pdf


P.S.: at least with my version of kermit (kermitpcw.com) the “command“ key would be the “minus” key next to the space bar.
« Last Edit: 16:54, 29 March 20 by TynH »

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #7 on: 17:08, 29 March 20 »

Hello everyone, at PCWWiki, we have the complete interface but the French version. I will look to see if we have the English manual. If you want to know some configuration and the KERMIT program I leave you a link in Spanish. Cheers

http://www.habisoft.com/pcwwiki/doku.php?id=es:hardware:hardware:comunicaciones:transferir_ficheros_de_pcw_a_pc

Offline micza

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #8 on: 17:09, 29 March 20 »

I did not expect so much help (very good instructions and books) I will get it today. Thank you very much !
In the past I had many 8bit and 16bit machines at hand, but PCW is one of the most interesting machines (via CP/M, communication with PC and a good text editor ...)
Many thanks !!!

Offline micza

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #9 on: 17:15, 29 March 20 »
@jevicac : Hello ! If you have the original CPS 8256 manual, please PDF - I don't care in which language, it's not a problem for me - I use OCR and translator  ... Thank you!

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #10 on: 17:19, 29 March 20 »
Okay, I'll leave the program I prepare for PCWWiki soon and scan the French manual for you. I will look to see if we also have English. As soon as you have it prepared, we will notify you. Cheers

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #11 on: 21:45, 29 March 20 »
What is promised is debt. Here you have the French manual of the interface. I have put it provisionally so that you can download it since on this website traffic is limited. Cheers


http://www.habisoft.com/pcwwiki/doku.php?id=es:hardware:perifericos:interface_serie_rs232c

Offline micza

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #12 on: 06:56, 30 March 20 »
@jevicac: Thank you very match !!! :-*

Offline GeoffB17

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #13 on: 14:40, 30 March 20 »
For information, I have one of the CPS units, purchased back 198?, and I have the English manual 'User Instruction Book' as well.

If you need it, I could scan it in, but I think it would have to be page-by-page as separate files as the book is slightly larger than A5 size.  Would you be able to turn the indiv page files into a combined .PDF?

Part of the book is about comms generally, and about cable options.

Geoff

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #14 on: 17:13, 30 March 20 »
If you scan the English manual at 300 dpi and pass me the images with width and height measurements, I will prepare the pdf if you want. regards

Offline GeoffB17

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #15 on: 19:54, 30 March 20 »
Hello,

I've done a test, got the Epson printer/scanner out, and trial run with 3 pages of the manual, using default settings which I think uses 300 dpi, although it seems to mess with the blank space top/bottom of the pages, which shoule be 17cm wide and 24.7 cm high.

These ok?

Geoff

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #16 on: 21:37, 30 March 20 »
Hello,

I've done a test, got the Epson printer/scanner out, and trial run with 3 pages of the manual, using default settings which I think uses 300 dpi, although it seems to mess with the blank space top/bottom of the pages, which shoule be 17cm wide and 24.7 cm high.

These ok?

Geoff


Ok, Perfect

Offline GeoffB17

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #17 on: 20:23, 05 April 20 »
Hello,

OK, I've done the scan of the CPS manual.  38 page images (there are a couple of blank pages which I have not done).

The files add to just over 24 Mb, as they're *.jpg they do not compress too much.   I note there is a 4 Mb limit on attachments.

Is there any better way I can send them to you?

The present filenames are mostly in the correct sequence, but not all.   I could re-name them all, or just rename the one that is VERY out of sequence.

The scan has messed with some of the page sizes, where there was more blank space around the edges.  I don't think I had any control over this.  Hopefully you can use the supposed page size info to fix this in your software?

Gepff

Offline GUNHED

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #18 on: 21:33, 05 April 20 »
Thanks for the awesome work, maybe it can be put somewhere in the Wiki too  :)
http://futureos.de --> Get the revolutionary FutureOS (Recent update: 2019.08.07)
http://futureos.cpc-live.com/files/LambdaSpeak_RSX_by_TFM.zip --> Get the RSX-ROM for LambdaSpeak :-) (Updated: 2019.08.14)

Offline JohnElliott

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #19 on: 17:19, 06 April 20 »
Hello,

OK, I've done the scan of the CPS manual.  38 page images (there are a couple of blank pages which I have not done).

The files add to just over 24 Mb, as they're *.jpg they do not compress too much.   I note there is a 4 Mb limit on attachments.

Is there any better way I can send them to you?

The present filenames are mostly in the correct sequence, but not all.   I could re-name them all, or just rename the one that is VERY out of sequence.

The scan has messed with some of the page sizes, where there was more blank space around the edges.  I don't think I had any control over this.  Hopefully you can use the supposed page size info to fix this in your software?

Gepff
If you pop them in a zip file you can use a transfer service like sendspace.com to send them.

Offline GeoffB17

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #20 on: 17:37, 06 April 20 »
Thanks John,

I got a direct email last night advising me of a direct email address re the Wiki, and the files went off immed.   I assume they went through OK.

My email acct allows sending 128Mb attachments, which was OK.  So no problem my end.   Otherwise, I've got a DropBox acct, but it was set up for a specific business customer, and I don't think it's readily accessible for Joe Public.

Geoff

Offline robcfg

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #21 on: 23:13, 06 April 20 »
Thanks for sending us your CPS8256 manual scans!

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #22 on: 00:56, 07 April 20 »
The CPS 8256 manual in English is now finished, thanks to our friend GeoffB17, it has been preserved. You can download the manual here:


http://www.habisoft.com/pcwwiki/doku.php?id=es:hardware:perifericos:cps8256_interfaz_paralelo_centronics_y_serie_rs232c
« Last Edit: 01:17, 07 April 20 by jevicac »

Offline GeoffB17

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #23 on: 01:56, 07 April 20 »
Wow, the result looks VERY good, much better than I'd expected.  No shadows.  I hope you didn't have to do too much messing with the images I did.

Geoff

Offline jevicac

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Re: CPS 8256 (PCW Parallel/Serial adaptor)
« Reply #24 on: 11:00, 07 April 20 »
Wow, the result looks VERY good, much better than I'd expected.  No shadows.  I hope you didn't have to do too much messing with the images I did.

Geoff


I had to mess around a lot with the images, shadow cleaning, whitening, scaling, straightening, etc ... Tedious work, but it was worth it. Thank you very much for helping us preserve and share with the PCW´s community.