VOGONS


First post, by Retronaut

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Hey, I have been trying to find a BIOS flash disk for my Ergo Pro x453, by a miracle I cant quite believe, Fujitsu actually have files available for download, for this machine from 1998. So

One file is FTS_BIOSUpgradeforx453x653BIOSID56Version1__5745.exe (231kb), and Im pretty sure its a BIOS flash file, and is my main bet to fix a possible corrupted BIOS. Im assuming I can dump it onto a PC 1.44mb floppy using a modern USB > 3.5" drive, and off I go. The name I think needs to be something specific, but Ill try and work that out somehow.

However, second file named FTS_BIOSupgradediskette_10_1000370.DMP is 1.5mb, and the name suggests its some kind of dump of a floppy disk contents, again BIOS related. Problem is, I dont know what a DMP is, and how do I convert this into a physical disk which can be used in the real machine.

Any help appreciated.

Chris Thomas
aka Retronaut @ https://www.youtube.com/@RetronautTech
Support me @ patreon.com/RetronautTech

Reply 3 of 11, by Retronaut

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jakethompson1 wrote on 2024-01-18, 22:53:

What is the exact size of the .DMP to the byte?

its 1,474,722 bytes

Chris

Chris Thomas
aka Retronaut @ https://www.youtube.com/@RetronautTech
Support me @ patreon.com/RetronautTech

Reply 4 of 11, by jakethompson1

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A "1.44" MB diskette is 1,474,560 bytes. Since that is slightly larger, it probably isn't compressed, and likely just has a 162 byte header or trailer (or portions of both) that needs chopped off to get a raw disk image.

Reply 5 of 11, by elszgensa

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Fujitsu's site includes a description for each download, which you appear to have missed. For your FTS_BIOSupgradediskette_10_1000370.DMP it's

Bios upgrade diskette for e452, e652, x453, x653 models.

Bios ver 1.21 for e452, e652 and ver 1.33 for x453, x653

Use DiskDump utility to extract file B56FB58C.DMP to 3.5" 1.44MB diskette.
DiskDump utility can be found from external number EX0004198.

Add following text to upgrade diskette label:
Fujitsu ErgoPro BIOS upgrade diskette
version 1.0
e452, e652, x453, x653 models
SE90165EA

...but it looks like you can skip their tool and just chop off the first 162 bytes, and it becomes a bootable floppy image (at least QEMU liked it, I didn't actually try writing it to a physical disk), like jakethompson1 suggested.

As for FTS_BIOSUpgradeforx453x653BIOSID56Version1__5745.exe, for some reason they insist on giving me the description in German:

zum Einspielen des neuen Bios erstellen Sie sich eine Bootdiskette mit "Format
a: /s". Kopieren Sie danach die entpackten Dateien auf die Diskette und starten
Sie den PC neu. Achten Sie darauf, daß beim Starten auf die Diskette
zugegriffen wird, korrigieren Sie evtl. den Eintrag im Bios.

...basically, create a bootabla floppy by yourself, add their files (after unpacking them) and then boot from it.

Reply 6 of 11, by Retronaut

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elszgensa wrote on 2024-01-18, 23:32:

Use DiskDump utility to extract file B56FB58C.DMP to 3.5" 1.44MB diskette.
DiskDump utility can be found from external number EX0004198.

...but it looks like you can skip their tool and just chop off the first 162 bytes, and it becomes a bootable floppy image (at least QEMU liked it, I didn't actually try writing it to a physical disk), like jakethompson1 suggested.

I did find A utility called DiskDUMP, but its kind of a generic name, so it may not be the same util. The info pages mention "external number EX0004198" Im not sure what thats about, I searched for DiskDump on their site, and that reference number and nothing.

So I have a USB 3.5" drive arriving tommorow from Amazin, so Ill give that util a go, and see what comes out from it. Fingers crossed

The .exe, seems to be an archive, so thats more straight forward. Im hoping between these two, Ill get a valid BIOS flash file.

I just need to work out now IF the BIOS chip is borked, not much point trying to flash it, if its faulty.

Thanks for the help one and all

Cheers

Chris/Retronaut

Chris Thomas
aka Retronaut @ https://www.youtube.com/@RetronautTech
Support me @ patreon.com/RetronautTech

Reply 7 of 11, by DerBaum

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can you zip both files and upload them here? i have a working 1.44mb floppy on my main pc and would like to try to extract the bios files. 😀
i can not find the files online.

I found the files. 👍

FCKGW-RHQQ2

Reply 8 of 11, by Horun

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Yeah so did I and Winimage opened the .DMP just fine..... am sure it would write it just fine too

Hate posting a reply and then have to edit it because it made no sense 😁 First computer was an IBM 3270 workstation with CGA monitor. Stuff: https://archive.org/details/@horun

Reply 9 of 11, by DerBaum

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Horun wrote on 2024-01-19, 02:11:

am sure it would write it just fine too

Yes it does.
And after that i read the files and put them into this rar file:

Filename
FTS_BIOSupgradediskette_10_1000370.rar
File size
418.18 KiB
Downloads
18 downloads
File license
Fair use/fair dealing exception

Here is the readme:

****** Fujitsu ErgoPro BIOS Upgrade Diskette for e452, e652, x453, ****** ****** x653 Models, Diskette Version 1.00 […]
Show full quote

****** Fujitsu ErgoPro BIOS Upgrade Diskette for e452, e652, x453, ******
****** x653 Models, Diskette Version 1.00 ******

This is the README file for the BIOS upgrade for FUJITSU ICL ErgoPro e452/xxx,
e652/xxx, x453/xxx and x653/xxx PC models. This diskette includes two BIOS
files. Detailed information about versions:

e452/xxx and e652/xxx
* BIOS file B58_C.LDB * Loader version 1.06
* BIOS version 1.21 * Video BIOS version A.A
* Requires Loader version 1.06 (or newer)

x453/xxx and x653/xxx
* BIOS file B56_F.LDB * Loader version 1.21
* BIOS version 1.33 * Video BIOS version A.2 (for VT2)
* Requires Loader version 1.11 (or newer) D (for VT3)

Loader upgrade requires that the system unit is opened and a jumper is
moved. Please contact your FUJITSU ICL Service Representative to get more
information about loader upgrade (a list of Service contacts, please
see the http://www.fujitsu-computers.com).

For x453 and x653 machines, the loader version will be checked automatically.
If the loader version is too low, the BIOS upgrade process will be aborted.

If a system password is set, the program will prompt you to enter the correct system password. An incorrect password will abort the upgrade process.

Step-by-step instructions to upgrade the BIOS :

1. Properly shutdown the OS and power-off your PC.
2. Insert the Upgrade Diskette into the floppy drive.
3. Power-on your PC, boot from the diskette
and follow the instructions shown on the screen.

After the successful BIOS upgrade, the PC should be booted. The new BIOS
version is shown on the screen during the boot.

FCKGW-RHQQ2

Reply 10 of 11, by Retronaut

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Well good news. The BIOS did the trick, I flashed the machine, which has a rather neat, no screen BIOS flash process and when this was complete, the machine now boots again.

Of those two files the DPM contains the fully floppy disk based flash process/files with the 1.33 version of the BIOS, whilst the .exe only contains the 1.39 version from 1998.

So once I knew the DMP Bios file worked, I flashed it again with the 1.39 in the .exe and that went well and now I suppose the machine is fully up to date AND working.

Phew...

Thanks for all your help everyone 😀

Cheers

Chris
aka Retronaut

Chris Thomas
aka Retronaut @ https://www.youtube.com/@RetronautTech
Support me @ patreon.com/RetronautTech

Reply 11 of 11, by Retronaut

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The video is now complete
Fujitsu Ergo Pro x453 PC - CH03: The Repair https://youtu.be/jdukubiLE34

I hope it captures the overall flow of how the machine was fixed in the end. It was certainly an interesting collaboration and I learnt a lot.
I also have a friend, who is an engineer, and makes a lot of kit (mainly Amiga) and he was an advocate of removing and replacing the SRAM
Which I then dutifully ordered from China, costing £2 for the 4 chips and £26 postage 😒
And as we know, not needed in the end, so if anyone needs one of those fancy 12ns Sram chips, you know where to call 😀

Hope you all enjoy the video, knowing you had some part in it.
It was quite nerve wracking flashing the BIOS, I had this fear it would fail, and maybe break a BIOS that was in fact perfectly fine.
But it turned out to be the bullseye.
Thanks for taking the time to extract those files for me, they were the fix in the end eh 😀

So, next step is to put it all back together, and I hope to get some new kit in there.

First I have to solder up and mount the two replacement Noctua fans. So airflow will be higher, but noise actually reduced.

I have a SCSI card, and I was going to put a BlueSCSI to replace the hard disk, but then found out they are £70 these days!
Which is funny as I bought the entire PC for £60!
So, change of plan, and now it gets a bog standard IDE to CFlash and a 16GB card.
Unless I can source a cheaper alternative, with the same perf.
The SCSI card goes in anyway, as I have a SCSI Zip drive I want to use on many of my retro machines, so its a great addition anyway.

Also, I bought a Matrox Millenium graphics card, which was actually an upgrade offered by ICL
I might try it with the on-board graphics, and maybe bench mark it.
That would make sense I suppose, before upgrading.

Oh yeah, now the machine is working, I also have two sticks of 32GB, so its not maxed out, but 64gb for a machine of this age is pretty enormous
I think it will play DOOM 😀

BTW, does anyone have an recommendations for utilities to test the machine and also benchmark it?
I want to benchmark its CPU, RAM, and its graphics card, and the hard disk.

Cheers

Chris
https://www.youtube.com/@RetronautTech

Chris Thomas
aka Retronaut @ https://www.youtube.com/@RetronautTech
Support me @ patreon.com/RetronautTech