VOGONS


Tiny Vortex86-based DOS gaming PC - weeCee

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Reply 120 of 134, by Caluser2000

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Mu0n wrote on 2021-07-02, 05:37:
Onto the wonderful (ugh) world of MS-DOS 6.22 network capability installation. […]
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Onto the wonderful (ugh) world of MS-DOS 6.22 network capability installation.

I'm following this page: http://www.dmp.com.tw/tech/vortex86dx/
DOS NDIS driver: pci-ndis.zip

and this page:
https://www.legroom.net/howto/msdos

I'm stuck fairly early in the process: with MS Network Client v3.0 (which I've extracted to a temporary install folder), it simply will refuse to take my path to the NDIS driver taken from the first link. It complains it can't find any driver. I've tried a few others (including one from RealTek's website (NDIS2 for dos: https://www.realtek.com/en/component/zoo/cate … et-pci-software)

Try this http://www.brutman.com/mTCP/. IRC client, Ftp server/client and more.

The MS Dos Client with the TCP/IP protocol sucks up far to much conventional memory

There's a glitch in the matrix.
A founding member of the 286 appreciation society.
Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.
Of course, as always, I'm open to correction...😉

Reply 121 of 134, by keropi

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mTCP ftp server on retro-pc and a modern client in modern system is the way to go
all you need is the DOS packet driver for the mTCP suite to work : load the driver, do your network thing, unload driver , enjoy life 😀

🎵 PCMIDI mpu site buy+info
🎧 WIP Orpheus soundcard site
💻 WTB Amstrad PC7486SLC-33 system

Reply 123 of 134, by Mu0n

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Thanks guys, that did the trick for some quick and massive ftpserv transfers.

on my modern win10 machine, I used WINSCP in ftp mode
on the Vortex86DX, I enabled mtu 1500 but not most the other optional settings.

I hit some snags when there were a lot of files and/or subdirectories to transfer, nothing that clicking on Retry wouldn't solve.

Next up in the distant future, figuring out ipx multiplayer

Reply 124 of 134, by Mu0n

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Most of the fm synth I've played sounds just fine, even inside Dune 1, but there's this heavily distorted part when you go into the planet view, or the encyclopedia, where the main instrument is butchered. Take a listen.

As I wrote before, it's not that big of a deal when it happens so rarely, but it's an improvement possibility, unless the chip is notorious for sounding like that in that specific situation.

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Reply 125 of 134, by rasteri

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Yeah it's fun to get MS Network Client working just for fun but it's pretty rubbish for actually transferring files, pretty much every time there's a new Windows update it breaks something.

The ODI ones are what you want for network gaming

Reply 126 of 134, by Mu0n

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I'm keeping my momentum still! I'm on a roll.

Win98se:
Tried TCP Optimizer which was talked about here : "Win98 poor network performance... advice needed \ VOGONS" Win98 poor network performance... advice needed

But it doesn't improve network transfers under my Windows installation. I keep getting a few seconds of rise up to 1 mb/s, then a downfall to 0 and stagnation for 3-5 seconds before another cycle restarts. I estimate this makes single cd iso transfers take up to an hour. The speed setting in the program always resets to 3 mbps for some reason.

Also, I'm gonna look for a braindead cheap solution ready-to-buy or make my own breadboard circuit at least, of a simple audio 2x1 audio mixer, so I can make this box mix the fm/sb signal to the output of a Roland module, which would be great for all those games which decouple the sound device choices between these two. I don't think I want individual volume control but I might change my mind. Most solutions on Amazon are $30+ things and it ought to be cheaper than this. Basically, the absence of a physical line in socket forces me to look for my own external hardware solution, which could come handy in other projects.

Reply 128 of 134, by 640K!enough

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Mu0n wrote on 2021-05-27, 14:36:

I went on and calculated my total costs in the past months for the project. I set out to build 2 units (highlighted below in the chart) to save on costs. Keep in mind these purchases:

It is an interesting project, but is it correct to say that it cost upwards of $600 (CAD) to build the first unit? That seems quite steep! I didn't notice it in that post, but did you mention the cost per unit just for the SOM?

Reply 129 of 134, by Mu0n

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640K!enough wrote on 2021-07-07, 17:20:
Mu0n wrote on 2021-05-27, 14:36:

I went on and calculated my total costs in the past months for the project. I set out to build 2 units (highlighted below in the chart) to save on costs. Keep in mind these purchases:

It is an interesting project, but is it correct to say that it cost upwards of $600 (CAD) to build the first unit? That seems quite steep! I didn't notice it in that post, but did you mention the cost per unit just for the SOM?

As I wrote, the barrage of shipping and duties costs is the downside aspect of it all. Your mileage may vary elsewhere in the world. It's possible further costs may be saved by having PCBWay (or others) provide the majority of the components already assembled.
ICOP sells 1 or 2 SOMs for 177 USD apiece (shipping and duties not included)

Reply 130 of 134, by rasteri

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Yeah it's not a cheap project (especially in Canada, apparently) but if someone wanted to manufacture these in quantity the price would come down significantly. I'm just a hobbyist really so I'm not the person for that job.

I do have a cheaper Vortex86 SoM (the SOM-128-EX) but I'm burned out on building mini DOS PCs for now. Perhaps I'll investigate it in a few months.

The "best" solution would be to design a motherboard that had the vortex86 SoC directly on it, but that would probably involve commisioning DM&P to design it, and then MOQs would really become a problem.

Reply 131 of 134, by Mu0n

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Compatibility notes:

King's Quest VI:

CD movies stutter weirdly, but it's fixed from a replacement vga320.drv from GoG

under maximum cpu speed settings, the midi initialisation for mt-32 goes to a checksum error (and then none of the instruments have been customized right so it sounds pretty bad) , so I made that work with cpu clock division by 16 at least.

Next bug happens semi-randomly when sound effects have to play, namely, the narrator and speech audio clips, it will hang and infinitely play the current waveform. I've tried removing L2 cache and maybe it's helping but I need more testing.

Edit:
Still crashes with L1 disabled. The floppy version has no stability problems so it may be my fallback.

Reply 132 of 134, by rasteri

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So I think I'm going to recommend people use a 16KB eeprom (24LC16 is what I used) then they can just use the Orpheus flashing tools.

Note that you need to edit CSMPU330.ini to enable Adlib - add the text "IFM" to the GlobalConfigBits field (so it ends up being "GlobalConfigBits = IFM SPS WTEN" ).

If you're using unisound, it's probably a good idea to also change "DeviceName" from Orpheus to something else (I used weecee). If unisound detects an orpheus it will just disable adlib again (although you can override it).

Reply 133 of 134, by Mu0n

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King's Quest VI: solution found - just transplant audblast.drv from the floppy version (which is rock solid on its own, for hours) to the CD version. So far, 15+ minutes of gameplay and no crash so far.

Also, I discovered I can just use general midi with my sound canvas and mix in my sound blaster audio in my module itself and it sounds pretty good compared to the MT-32. Not all games will do this, of course, so I have a passive mixer meant to feed a powered set of speakers arriving on Monday.

Reply 134 of 134, by Mu0n

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More compatibility notes (I'll bring 'em all in one text file at some point):

Descent 1 Anniversary edition: wouldn't run with the included dos4/gw, so I used dos32a in its place and it works perfectly with absolutely decent FPS:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgh2hGS8Tig (sorry for the quality of the video, as you can see, phone filming without a tripod is shoddy)

Hi-Octane: hard crash whatever I did. It uses an external dos4/gw, so I tried with dos32a and it runs well....TOO well that it's unplayable (even in 640x480), so I tried with cpu divide by 8 and it's close to what it should be (I'll try the others later). I can't make the sound setup recognize my GM roland sc-88st without a hard crash, softmpu being present or not doesn't change things. All I have left to try is to dos32a the sound setup utility as well.