Greaseweazle

Started by sb1903, 23:36, 15 May 22

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sb1903

Hi,

I wonder if I am the only one in this forum using a Greaseweazle (in my case a V4) to connect an FD-1 to a modern PC and restore/mirror old 3" disks into an image. I can say that for me, this works quite well. The explanations on Muckypaws' website actually helped a lot. I thought it's maybe a good idea to document here how this works. Comments, thoughts, own experience with Greaseweazle and discussion about this solution is welcome in this thread :)

In short what I found out via that website and partially also myself:
- Aside from making sure a new belt is installed in the drive, it's important to also disconnect the 5V power plug *in* the drive. Otherwise the FD-1 may burn your Greaseweazle.
- The connection works well via a 1:1 34-pin cable without any twists or so. It can happen that this cable gets connected to the FD-1 in the wrong way, then you should hear the motor all the time (make sure no disk is in the drive!). I was lucky and directly connected it right. For me, the cable goes up-side when looking at the drive.
- First time I connected the Greaseweazle and installed its host software, I was asked to do a firmware update and directly did that.
- I found that for me the best way to use the Greaseweazle is to store the raw stream from the drive in various files (one file per track on disk). The advantage is that when a track hasn't been correctly red (one or more sectors missing or with wrong CRC), then I can just re-read this track (sometimes need to do that several times, if the disk is stubborn) instead of the entire disk.
- I read in the disks via
gw read --revs=5 --track="c=0-39:h=0" --drive B ResultFile99.0.rawThis creates files ResultFile00.0.raw, ResultFile01.0.raw, ..., ResultFile39.0.raw (each track of the disk in the appropriate file)
- HxCFloppyEmulator is the right tool to analyze the result of the command below. I use "Load", then "Track Analyzer" and select there the "Dummy disk". On top, it luckily shows you how many sectors are bad. I identify these (just by looking at the visualization - didn't find a better/easier way by now), and re-read the affected tracks with the same command as above by just changing the tracks after the "c=" accordingly.
- I use the Export functionality of the HxCFloppyEmulator to export into Amstrad DSK format.
- I enjoy the created disk images in any emulator (usually I use cpcec).

Devlin

I have a greaseweazle, and the necessary attachment for imaging CPC disks but I never got to use it.

The CPC attachment was intended for a future acquisition that due to life/money problems never happened, so it did its job as amiga imaging device and went in a box until needed again. They're wonderful little devices, though. I use a nice little gui to do my imaging to spare me headaches of command line stuff - https://github.com/M1kerochip/LaunchGreaseWeazle
Amstrad fan! | CPC464 + USIfAC II | Administrator of Amstrad Discord : https://discord.gg/ksWvApv

Sykobee (Briggsy)

I have a GW (I owe Keir some beers next time we go on a pub crawl) but haven't wired it up to the FD1 yet because there's never enough time. Thanks for the UI link Devlin.

Smanux

Is it possible to connect the internal floppy drive from the CPC 6128 to the Greaseweazle?

TotO

Quote from: Smanux on 18:07, 01 January 23Is it possible to connect the internal floppy drive from the CPC 6128 to the Greaseweazle?
Probably the Amstrad Plus drive (+5V only). Now, take care to the pinout in case something is inverted.
"You make one mistake in your life and the internet will never let you live it down" (Keith Goodyer)

Smanux

I was thinking maybe, keep the drive powered up by the CPC 6128, but plug the data cable to the Greaseweazle. I don't know it that would work.

BSC

This sounds really interesting! Am I correct to understand that I could connect my 5,25" disk drive to the Greaseweazle and turn the contents of my old disks into DSK images without the need to connect the disk drive to anything else but the GW? 

tjohnson

I have one and used it to connect my drive from the 6128 to a computer.  I had to make an adapter cable for both the drive and power.  Works well but I haven't used it in over 1 year in cnce I imagined the disks I wanted.

kailokyra

Quote from: sb1903 on 23:36, 15 May 22- I use the Export functionality of the HxCFloppyEmulator to export into Amstrad DSK format.
The HxCFloppyEmulator DSK export is not quite perfect yet it seems, but you can export them to Kyroflux format, then use Samdisk to export it to a dsk.

sb1903

Quote from: kailokyra on 11:34, 02 January 23The HxCFloppyEmulator DSK export is not quite perfect yet it seems, but you can export them to Kyroflux format, then use Samdisk to export it to a dsk.
Can you be more precise about what "not quite perfect" means? Is there anywhere a description of the issues available? At least for my 3" disks, I didn't experience any issues with the HxCFloppyEmulator DSK export. Even the few copy protected commercial disks that I had (with the very strange Speedlok format that I was never able to copy on the CPC hardware back in the days) were correctly dumped into DSK and run in the emulator flawlessly.

kailokyra

It couldn't properly export a dsk from a flux dump of Albertville 92 with sectors of type 6. Some issue with a missing byte in the export for the XOR checksum at &1801, an issue with a gap too big and an overdump that shouldn't be here. I didn't grasp all the details of what I was explained by Kukulkan thought, so sorry if it's hazy. :)

BSC

What would be the best (as in reasonable price for a delivery to Germany and not having to wait for months) option to order a Greaseweazle?

SkulleateR

Quote from: BSC on 21:42, 09 January 23What would be the best (as in reasonable price for a delivery to Germany and not having to wait for months) option to order a Greaseweazle?
https://amigastore.eu/894-greaseweazle-v4.html got some in stock  ;)

BSC

Quote from: SkulleateR on 23:46, 09 January 23https://amigastore.eu/894-greaseweazle-v4.html got some in stock 
And for reasonable costs as well. I have ordered one today :)

sb1903

Quote from: kailokyra on 13:31, 09 January 23It couldn't properly export a dsk from a flux dump of Albertville 92 with sectors of type 6. Some issue with a missing byte in the export for the XOR checksum at &1801, an issue with a gap too big and an overdump that shouldn't be here. I didn't grasp all the details of what I was explained by Kukulkan thought, so sorry if it's hazy. :)
Thanks @kailokyra , that's helpful information. I think none of the 3" disks I have here is using such sectors. So I was not affected by this flaw then :)

Quote from: BSC on 21:42, 09 January 23What would be the best (as in reasonable price for a delivery to Germany and not having to wait for months) option to order a Greaseweazle?
I got mine from Sordan who ship from Ireland. If I remember right, the delivery took ~2 week and there were no issues with it. I purchased the version that includes a case.

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