AMIGA alive

AMIGA alive

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Barbarism increased: Barbarian+ for Classic Amiga

Classic beat'n'hack'em game "Barbarian - The Ultimate Warrior" got a fan-made facelifted remake, and is now available on Aminet.


Tuesday, November 6, 2018

WARP 1260 accelerator board

Oh this looks and sounds sooo good: a new 68060 accelerator for Amiga 1200 is underway. And it has some awesome features.

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DrE0XLFWsAAon3V.jpg

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The Art of the Algorithms

Not strictly Amiga, but very Amiga nonetheless: "Moleman 2 - Demoscene - The Art of the Algorithms" is a 2011/2012 documentary film from Hungary about the home computer demo coding scene.

If you're into swapping, trading, cracking, coding, intros, demos, cracktros, and that kind of stuff, "Vakondok 2 - Demoscene" - the film's original Hungarian title - by Director Szilárd Matusik is just perfect for you.

It explores the Hungarian demo scene, a fascinating insight into the history of demo coding, how demos are made, who makes them, who watches them. Amiga related content pops up here and there, but where it doesnt it's still a very enjoyable watch for anyone interested the demoscene, digital visual and audible art, computer programming, or computer hardware.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRkZcTg1JWU


Note that large portions of the audio track are in Hungarian, but you can use YouTube's subtitles for an English translation.

You can go to http://www.molemanfilm.com to find out more about "Vakondok 2" and the other "Vakondok" movies.


Sources:
http://vakondok.com / http://www.molemanfilm.com
https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2170661/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRkZcTg1JWU

Monday, October 8, 2018

AmigaOS 3.1.4 Frequently Asked Questions answered

The same day the operating system update was released, a FAQ has been uploaded to AmiNet. If you have questions about or issues with AmigaOS 3.1.4 this might be the place to start looking for answers:

http://aminet.net/package/docs/help/AmigaOS_3.1.4-FAQ

Monday, October 1, 2018

56 new links in the AMIGA alive web directory

Another update to the AMIGA alive Web Directory - 56 links added, now 340 websites listed!

If you're looking for something specific, make sure to check the "Misc / Mixed" section, as some websites cover multiple different subjects, e.g. software authors may have created very different applications.



Rise of the undead: AmigaOS 3.1.4 released

In Amigaland, 3.1.4 comes after 3.9: 18 years have passed since the last update of AmigaOS3 - since yesterday you can purchase a new release, AmigaOS 3.1.4!

----- ----- ----- ----- -----
UPDATE 2018-11-06: Software-only distribution of AmigaOS 3.1.4 has stopped, physical media (floppys & ROM) release is available at your Amiga dealer now!
----- ----- ----- ----- -----

Gathering information from various sources (see end of article) it's assumed it has these features:
  • Support for large harddisks (HD_SCSI_CMD, TD_64 and/or NSD) and "super floppies"
  • Support for long filenames, pipes, softlinks, hardlinks
  • "DiskDoctor" program is back, upgraded and matured, recovers data from damaged floppies and harddisks
  • Native support for 68000-68060 CPUs, and a more robust auto-configuration process
  • many ROM modules and CLI/shell commands bugfixed and updated
  • Workbench updated, new Preferences editors in GadTools style, printer drivers and support tools updated
  • "edit" and "MagTape" removed
  • CrossDOS and CD-ROM filesystem updated, including multithreading and support for Rockridge, Joliet and UDF
  • new professionally designed iconsets (multicolor, classic 4-color)
  • new intuition.library provides window off-screen dragging (optional)
  • workbench.library and icon.library loaded from disk due to increased size
...and more.

No screenshots or reviews have surfaced yet. Judging from AmigaOS 3.1.4's features, it's unlikely it will run on 512K Amigas, but contrary to OS3.5 and OS3.9 the 68000 CPU is still officially supported. Also it looks like this version is meant to replace the OS3.5/OS3.9 branch of AmigaOS, though with a little work it's still possible to keep your existing OS3.5/OS3.9 installation intact, if you prefer.

In other words:


A physical set of 3,5" floppy diskettes and ROMs will be available shortly.



Sources:
http://www.hyperion-entertainment.com/index.php/news/1-latest-news/189-amigaos-314-for-68k-releasedhttp://hyperion-entertainment.biz/index.php/where-to-buy/direct-downloads/188-amigaos-314
http://amiga-news.de/de/news/AN-2018-09-00046-DE.html
http://amiga-news.de/de/news/AN-2018-03-00061-DE.html
http://amiga-news.de/de/news/AN-2017-10-00059-DE.html
https://forum.amiga.org/index.php?topic=73661.0

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The awesomeness: Amiga hardware news - galore! (2/2)

Even more pure awesomeness. The Amiga community is without a doubt the most active and knowledgeable in the retro scene.

Paul Rezendes' Amiga 4000 replica mainboard


We've already reported about this project - and, yeah, it's done, thanks to Paul and the community!

The GoFundMe campaign has reached and even exceeded the amount of money required, and Paul Rezendes was pretty quick at getting the first boards produced and tested. By now the files created have been released to the public, and you can even order a board from Paul.

https://github.com/Acill/A4000RevB/blob/master/Images/20180804_091312.jpg?raw=true

Another fantastic addition to the range of newly available Amiga parts. Now there's no excuse not to resurrect your battery-leakage-damaged Amiga 4000 from the attic!

The fundraising campaign can still be found at:
https://www.gofundme.com/amiga-4000-replica-with-schematics/

The files required to build your A4000 replica mainboard can be found at:
https://github.com/Acill/A4000RevB

Take a look at Paul's website for some pictures of these beauties, and order a board if you like:
http://www.acill.com


...and arananet's Amiga 4000 daughterboard!


With the Amiga 4000 replica mainboard done (see above), and John Hertell's A3660 Amiga 4000 CPU board done, you might be wondering "cool, but I still can't build my Amiga 4000 without a ..."

Daughterboard. Wonder no more.

Eduardo Luis Arana has published the files required to build a updated daughterboard. The ISA ports has been removed, and it now includes a 15KHz VGA display connector to use with a breakout / backplate bracket. And it has some nice fiery design on the backside.

https://github.com/arananet/A4000db/blob/master/img/1.png?raw=true

You can grab the files required build your new Amiga 4000 daughterboard from GitHub at:
https://github.com/arananet/A4000db


Amiga S-video board


The Amiga's video connectivity features, while being highly convenient about 25 years ago, have turned out to be somewhat problematic today, and every update to them is warmly received.

http://electronics.chroma.se/svideo2.jpg

This board connects the any Amiga's 23-pin display output, and has a composite video, an S-video, and a 15KHz VGA output connector. Picture quality is claimed to be higher than Amiga-built-in outputs, especially using the S-video output.

Here we have another little success story regarding teamwork among Amigans: this circuitry is the one being used in John Hertell's ReAmiga 1200 for video output - nice! (see part 1 of this article)

Go to this website for more information about the Chroma Amiga S-video board:
http://electronics.chroma.se/svideo.php


K1208 and A1200 SDE+ 8MB FastRAM, SPI (SD, Ethernet) boards for Amiga 1200


Derived from Stephen Leary's TF328 project by Kipper2k, and further developed by Solidcore and Mike Stirling, these are two similar expansion boards for the Amiga 1200.

The specifications read as follows:
  • 4MB/8MB FastRAM jumper (4MB for PCMCIA support)
  • microSD card slot, up to 4GB FAT95 (FAT/FAT32) formatted cards (SPI 8MHz)
  • Ethernet ENC28J60 SPI module support (SPI 8MHz)
  • Real-time clock
  • 2800+ dhrystones on stock Amiga 1200 (14MHz 68EC020)
The situation with these boards is a bit unclear, no conclusive information about final development and availability could be found. It looks as if currently only the software for the cards (drivers and firmware) has been released to the public.

If you want to know more, check these links:http://eab.abime.net/showthread.php?p=1212721
http://www.amibay.com/showthread.php?100275-A1208-8MB-Fastmem-SPI-(SD-Ethernet)-Board-for-A1200
https://www.mike-stirling.com/2018/05/sd-card-and-ethernet-on-the-amiga-1200/
https://github.com/mikestir/k1208-drivers
https://github.com/mikestir/k1208-cpld

(If you can clarify about the situation please leave a comment, thanks!)


Inexpensive A500 hard disk interface


A nice little addition for your quick harddrive needs might be this straightforward Amiga 500 harddisk interface. It requires a floppy disk to boot from and has been successfully tested with Kickstart 1.3 and 2.0.

Now this one has a feature that cannot be praised highly enough:
As you can see in the picture below, it has two expansion port connectors, one after another - the front one is an adapter to standard 2.54mm pin grid connector, and the other one is the pin grid connector mounted to the PCB. As the author says in the README file: "[...] future expansions will be developed with pin headers as their main connector." Huge sigh of relief. Finally someone starts to get rid of proprietary, hard-to-obtain connectors, and replaces them with widely available, future-safe solutions. One small step for an expansion board, hopefully one giant leap for Amiga-kind.

https://github.com/AmigaPorts/a500hdd/blob/master/doc/nib.jpg?raw=true


As of now the latest commit to the GitHub repository happened just 11 days ago, so this is apparently under active development.

The projects website is located at:
https://github.com/AmigaPorts/a500hdd




BONUS HARDWARE:

GRETA FastRAM/microSD/ethernet expansion board for Amiga 500


A couple of years ago, Martin "endofexclusive" Åberg from Sweden created GRETA, a Xilinx Spartan FPGA-based expansion board for Amiga 500. It's build to add 8MB SRAM, a microSD slot, and 10/100MBit ethernet controller to the Amiga. The project files have last been updated on August 1st 2016, and hardware programming is still incomplete - currently only RAM expansion is supported.

GRETA seems to be some kind of forgotten gem among Amiga hardware expansions - the specifications look fantastic, it contains all of the features one would like to have on a single PCB. As it seems, there's only some programming required to make things work.

https://github.com/endofexclusive/greta/blob/master/doc/mounted_components2.jpg?raw=true


Wouldn't that be a nice project to pick up and give it some love?

Looking at the other amazing expansion boards that have come out in recent years, probably even an unexperienced programmer would be able to add ethernet and microSD mass storage support to the device, there's plenty of material out there to study and learn from.

If you're interested, go to GitHub, and start building your GRETA:https://github.com/endofexclusive/greta

You may find more information about GRETA in this forum thread on a1k.org:
http://www.a1k.org/forum/showthread.php?t=54707
(currently a1k.org doesn't accept new member registrations)


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Thanks for reading!
Support Amiga hardware development!
Donate!
Buy stuff!

* * *


This part 2 of this article - have you read part 1?

* * *

If you spot an error please report by leaving a comment below.
If you don't, your comment is still appreciated. ;-)

Sources:
http://www.acill.com
https://github.com/arananet/A4000db 
https://github.com/endofexclusive/greta
http://www.amiga-news.de/en/news/AN-2016-04-00050-EN.html 
http://www.nemesiz4ever.de/board/thread.php?board=1&thema=11