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New versions of Fasttracker 2 for MS-DOS

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Reply 120 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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There's technically a tick delay in original FT2 when using Sound Blaster, but I'm not sure how high it is. Gravis Ultrasound mode though, should give extremely low tick delay (probably <1ms).
Now that sounds fine, but when it comes to the FT2 clone, it has too high delay (~21.3ms on the default buffer size @ 48kHz) for MIDI output to be sensible.

Last edited by 8bitbubsy on 2021-08-20, 09:24. Edited 2 times in total.

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS

Reply 121 of 142, by commodore

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8bitbubsy: I've noticed that... I've always attributed the delay to my older/slower machine i'm running it on and the way I have alsa configured., and before I understood that it was a completely different application / not a "port"; used to think it had something to do with the fact it was (originally "optimizxed" for) DOS ASM code, running on a modern-ish linux kernel (the kernel that SPINLOCKs were removed/made way different was quite some time ago. I don't really understand what they are / how they are used completely, but I know oldschool archaic primitive hardware that really only was designed for realmode DOS stopped working with "bandaid" drivers to get 'em working in linux )

Doesn't matter though at this point I guess... It seems quite reasonable when it's on the lower ("small"?) buffer size setting...

Reply 122 of 142, by DOS.putin

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It is simply wonderful to see continued development on FT2. Yet distressing to see that this code base still remains closed source.
This community who have grown up with this amazing program, would benefit so much if this code would only be made public and tracked in a proper repository for version control.
Make FastTracker 2 Open Source!

--
Rocking a "Lunchbox" Ruggedized Portable 486 DX4 100mhz, 32mb, FreeDOS, Soundblaster Awe64 ISA & Fast Tracker II

Reply 123 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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DOS.putin wrote on 2021-08-29, 08:21:

It is simply wonderful to see continued development on FT2. Yet distressing to see that this code base still remains closed source.
This community who have grown up with this amazing program, would benefit so much if this code would only be made public and tracked in a proper repository for version control.
Make FastTracker 2 Open Source!

Vogue (Magnus, one of the FT2 coders) didn't allow me to make the original code public, sadly... But at least the FT2 clone is open source: https://github.com/8bitbubsy/ft2-clone

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS

Reply 124 of 142, by digger

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With all due respect to the original developers of FT2, I really don't get what their objection is to open-sourcing it at this point. Especially since they do seem willing to give individuals access to it upon request. Is there still the worry that someone else would take the credit for it? Will they eventually open-source it for the sake of historic preservation, or are they okay with it being lost to time eventually? What are their actual *arguments* against open-sourcing their historic labor of love so long after its release? It's a DOS program. It has no more economic value outside of the retro enthusiast community. I don't get it. 😕

Let me put this more constructively, then: can the original developers perhaps make a list of remaining concrete requirements that they would like to see met, for them to agree to an eventual open source release of the Fast Tracker II source code?

Reply 125 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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No one knows.

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS

Reply 126 of 142, by drastikterror

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digger wrote on 2021-08-29, 16:52:

With all due respect to the original developers of FT2, I really don't get what their objection is to open-sourcing it at this point. Especially since they do seem willing to give individuals access to it upon request. Is there still the worry that someone else would take the credit for it? Will they eventually open-source it for the sake of historic preservation, or are they okay with it being lost to time eventually? What are their actual *arguments* against open-sourcing their historic labor of love so long after its release? It's a DOS program. It has no more economic value outside of the retro enthusiast community. I don't get it. 😕

Let me put this more constructively, then: can the original developers perhaps make a list of remaining concrete requirements that they would like to see met, for them to agree to an eventual open source release of the Fast Tracker II source code?

I think exactly the same!👍

Reply 127 of 142, by DOS.putin

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8bitbubsy wrote on 2021-08-29, 09:44:
DOS.putin wrote on 2021-08-29, 08:21:

It is simply wonderful to see continued development on FT2. Yet distressing to see that this code base still remains closed source.
This community who have grown up with this amazing program, would benefit so much if this code would only be made public and tracked in a proper repository for version control.
Make FastTracker 2 Open Source!

Vogue (Magnus, one of the FT2 coders) didn't allow me to make the original code public, sadly... But at least the FT2 clone is open source: https://github.com/8bitbubsy/ft2-clone

Ooof, feel kind of silly that I did not know before reading this post that the FT2 clone was open-source.
I hope there is somebody out there who is very handy with Clang and MIDI implementations that will shown some interest in working on MIDI for FT2. Maybe, BIG MAYBE, we will have a PR with MIDI-Out support in the future. I hope. For a long time my though was that I was the only weirdo who used FT2 for MIDI Sequencing external synths, but now I've seen there are some other users out there who have been making the same requests as me for MIDI Out. FT2 is a quirky yet effective MIDI sequencer. A large amount of my electronic music composition for 20+ years depended on this MIDI functionality for recording and performance.

Thanks 8bitbubsy for making your source available.

--
Rocking a "Lunchbox" Ruggedized Portable 486 DX4 100mhz, 32mb, FreeDOS, Soundblaster Awe64 ISA & Fast Tracker II

Reply 128 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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Released v2.12 just now with a quick crash-fix (f.ex. "ambrozia.xm" when it's about to loop from song end to song start).
Several changes were done to v2.11 after its first release date, so bumping up the version number will make more people realize it's time to update.

https://16-bits.org/etc/FT212.ZIP

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS

Reply 131 of 142, by drastikterror

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8bitbubsy wrote on 2022-11-28, 15:27:

Released v2.12 just now with a quick crash-fix (f.ex. "ambrozia.xm" when it's about to loop from song end to song start).
Several changes were done to v2.11 after its first release date, so bumping up the version number will make more people realize it's time to update.

https://16-bits.org/etc/FT212.ZIP

Thank you! Great work!

Reply 132 of 142, by Rawit

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Thanks for the update. Do you happen to know what graphics mode FT2 exactly sets (dot clock etc)? I've noticed that display timing is being used by FT2 when using a GUS. Modern display options that force 60Hz are causing gaps in the patterns.

YouTube

Reply 133 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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Rawit wrote on 2023-01-09, 11:08:

Thanks for the update. Do you happen to know what graphics mode FT2 exactly sets (dot clock etc)? I've noticed that display timing is being used by FT2 when using a GUS. Modern display options that force 60Hz are causing gaps in the patterns.

First FT2 enters mode 13h (320x200 at 70Hz 256 colors - chunky), then it tweaks it to be 640x400 at 70Hz 16 colors (planar).
The nominal vblank rate is 70.086302895323Hz.

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS

Reply 135 of 142, by Darwiniandude

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8bitbubsy - big thanks to you for bug fixes to the original and FT2 Clone. Seriously excellent work, thank you. While I have FT2 on a real Compaq 486, I most certainly never in a million years imagined I could run a native Apple Silicon version on my Mac Studio. This is awesome 😀

Reply 136 of 142, by g2zer0

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Can it be used with SBEMU?
Blaster variable is set, tried with all FT2 Versions from 2.08 to 2.12, but when i click "Sound Blaster" in the config, it has no effect.
Tried with ms-dos 6.22 and 8.00 in real mode.

Reply 137 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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I haven't tested it with SBEMU, so I don't know why it fails.
What does your BLASTER environment variable look like?

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS

Reply 138 of 142, by g2zer0

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i'm emulating SB16.

SET BLASTER=A220 I5 D1 H5 P330 T6

also tried VSBHDA14 instead of SBEMU, same thing.

i remember this problem from the old days, when the original creative SB16 driver was not loaded correctly in MS-DOS.
maybe there's some sort of check for the driver in the ft2 code.

Reply 139 of 142, by 8bitbubsy

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Hm ok, that ought to work. Not sure why it doesn't...

386:
- CPU: 386DX-40 (128kB external L1 cache)
- RAM: 8MB (0 waitstates at 40MHz)
- VGA: Diamond SpeedSTAR VGA (ET4000AX 1MB ISA)
- Audio: SB Pro 2.0 + GUS 1MB
- ISA PS/2 mouse card + ISA USB card
- MS-DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1
- MR BIOS