Welcome to comp.sys.atari.st

Welcome to comp.sys.atari.st

Post by davi.. » Wed, 20 Jun 1990 23:50:25



Last update: 19 June 1990
Author:  David Paschall-Zimbel          (davi...@simvax.labmed.umn.edu)
Comments and suggestions welcome.

Directory (new articles and articles with changes are marked with an '*'):

  Welcome to comp.sys.atari.st
  What sort of articles would interest people reading comp.sys.atari.st?
  Where can I get Public Domain/Shareware software?
  How do I deal with Archived files (.ZOO, .ARC, .LZH)?
  What does TOS ERROR nn mean?  What do the bombs on my screen mean?
  What is the format for [x] paint program data?
  Public Domain/Shareware languages...
* Where can I get copies of ZNET?
  ST Pen Pals list
  TIPS AND HINTS from other users

                         Welcome to comp.sys.atari.st
                         ============================

This newsgroup is devoted to discussion about 16 bit Atari micros.  At
present that includes the Atari 520ST, 1040ST, Mega ST, STe, and STacy.
There are also emulators for the Apple Macintosh and IBM XT available.
Finally, there is the Lynx (a game machine) and the Atari TT and ATW.

Most of the people who read this newsgroup are technically oriented.
The newsgroup serves as a resource for Atari users ... feel free to
contribute to the discussions.

What sort of articles would interest people reading comp.sys.atari.st?
======================================================================

The most interesting articles are technical articles, impressions of
software/hardware, information on Atari user-groups and shows, or helpful
hints on how to make better use of the machine and its software.

The least interesting articles are in the form of 'my computer is better
than...', especially when cross-posted outside of comp.sys.atari.st.  If
you don't know how to eliminate other newsgroups from a reply to an article
which is cross-posted, ask your systems administrator.

'FOR-SALE' articles should be posted to misc.forsale, and ONLY local
distribution of comp.sys.atari.st.  Those outside the United States have little
desire to read about that neat bit of [hard/soft]ware you're selling when you
live in the U.S.A. If you don't know how to restrict distribution of a posting,
ask your systems administrator.

Many articles are in the form of "How do I...?" or "Where do I...?"  In this
article, I will try to answer some of the most-often asked questions.

Where can I get Public Domain/Shareware software?
==========================================================

There is an FTP source and a comp.sources.atari.st/comp.binaries.atari.st
mail server.  You can also try the commercial on-line services such as
GEnie, CompuServe, Delphi and Bix.

For anonymous FTP:      terminator.cc.umich.edu [35.1.33.8]

User anonymous
<enter password>
cd /atari

Most files should be retrieved in BINARY format (at least those ending with
the suffix of .ARC, .LZH, .ZOO, .PRG, .TTP, .TOS)

For the panarthea mail server, see Steven Grimm's monthly posting.
Panarthea holds all of the comp.sources.atari.st/comp.binaries.atari.st
postings.  If you aren't reading these two newsgroups, you should consider
doing so.

How do I deal with Archived files (.ZOO, .ARC, .LZH)?
=====================================================

Files ending with suffixes .ZOO, .ARC and .LZH are archive files.  They are
binary files which may contain one or more other files in a compressed format.
Archive files usually take up less disk space, and for this reason have
become quite popular for transferring large files via modem.

In order to extract the files from an archive file, one must use an archive
program.  Here are the correspondences:

ARC     Use ARC.TTP
LZH     Use LHARC.TTP
ZOO     Use ZOO.TTP

These programs are all available via FTP from terminator, in the
/atari/archivers directory.  Recommended files are:

        arc.ttp         - needed to extract the other archivers, once.
        arc_602.arc     - latest version of ARC, with the most fancy features
                          and quite a lot of documentation
        lharc.arc
        zoo_bin.arc

There are also several GEM programs which act as 'shells' for the archive
programs.  The most popular are Shareware offerings, also available on
terminator in the /atari/archivers directory.  They are:

        arcgsh21.arc    - European in origin
        arcsh197.arc    - US in origin

The GEM shells are recommended for inexperienced users (and appear to be quite
handy for the experienced user as well!)  They require a copy of the archive
program -- in other words you need BOTH the GEM shell *AND* the archive
program in order to use the GEM shell.

Documentation on the use of the archive programs should accompany the archive
files mentioned above.  To use ARC.TTP in order to extract these files, use the
command line:

        xh xxxx.ARC *.*

where 'xxxx' is replaced by 'arc_602', 'zoo_bin', etc.  For example

        xh arc_602.arc *.*

will place all files within the arc_602.arc into the current directory.  It
assumes you've clicked on the ARC.TTP program from the Desktop and have the
parameter dialogue box on your screen.

In many cases, simply typing a '?h' will provide an extensive list of available
options.

Source and binary code for archive programs have also been posted to
comp.sources.atari.st and comp.binaries.atari.st.  They are available via
e-mail through the panarthea archive server.  See Steven Grimm's posting for
more information on how to obtain files from panarthea.

What does TOS ERROR nn mean?
What do the bombs on my screen mean?
====================================

Below is a letter, originally written by Darryl May,
that John Townsend of Atari posted on GEnie in January to provide some
answers. This letter also appeared in the June 1988 issue of _Current
Notes_ (122 N. Johnson Rd., Sterling, VA 22170).

 Dear ATARI customer,

     The following is an official list of the errors that can appear
 while you are operating your ST computer. This first list gives you
 the GEM error messages:

          Error description          GEM Error code
          =========================================
             OK (no error)....................0
             Fundamental error................1
             Drive not ready..................2
             Unknown command..................3
             CRC error........................4
             Bad request......................5
             Seek error.......................6
             Unknown media....................7
             Sector not found.................8
             No paper.........................9
             Write fault.....................10
             Read fault......................11
             General error...................12
             Write protect...................13
             Media change....................14
             Unknown device..................15
             Bad sectors on format...........16
             Insert other disk...............17
             Invalid function number.........32
             File not found..................33
             Path not found..................34
             No handles left.................35
             Access denied...................36
             Invalid handle..................37
             Insufficient memory.............39
             Invalid memory block address....40
             Invalid drive specified.........46
             No more files...................49
             Range error.....................64
             Internal error..................65
             Invalid program load format.....66

     Those bombs that appear on your screen are error messages from
 the 68000 micro-processor.

                                           Number
          Description                     of bombs
          ===========================================
             Reset: Initial PC2...............1
             Bus Error........................2
             Address Error....................3
             Illegal Instruction..............4
             Zero Divide......................5
             CHK Instruction..................6
             TRAPV Instruction................7
             Privilege Violation..............8
             Trace............................9
             Line 1010 Emulator..............10
             Line 1111 Emulator..............11
             [unassigned, reserved]..........12
             [unassigned, reserved]..........13
             Format Error....................14
             Uninitialized Interrupt Vector..15
             [unassigned, reserved].......16-23
             Spurious Interrupt..............24
             Level 1 Interrupt Autovector....25
             Level 2 Interrupt Autovector....26
             Level 3 Interrupt Autovector....27
             Level 4 Interrupt Autovector....28
             Level 5 Interrupt Autovector....29
             Level 6 Interrupt Autovector....30
             Level 7 Interrupt Autovector....31
             Trap Instruction Vectors.....32-47
             [unassigned, reserved].......48-63
             User Interrupt Vectors......64-255

                                     Darryl May
                                     Tech Specialist

What is the format for [x] paint program data?
==============================================

There is a periodic posting of ST Picture Formats, edited by David Baggett.
The file is in the terminator archives under /atari/graphics/picfmts.doc.

Public Domain/Shareware languages...
====================================

Check the terminator archives under /atari/languages.  Currently included:

abc             recently posted to comp.binaries.atari.st
apl             demo version
forth           Don't know which one.  I recommend Bradley FORTH
icon            
modula-2        From Germany
Sozobon C       Most excellant
Elan
xlisp
xprolog
xscheme

Where can I get copies of ZNET?
===============================

ZNET on-line magazine is available on CompuServe and GEnie. You can also get
copies mailed to you by sending an e-mail message to

        stzmagazine-requ...@virginia.edu

indicating you wish to subscribe.

They won't get to you on Friday (which is when they're posted), but Greg
Lindahl provides an excellent service to the networking community by sending
these out.

ZNET and some information from the Current Notes user magazine are also
available from the terminator archives under /atari/magazines.

ST Pen Pals list
================

Simon Chappell is compiling a list of people interested in exchanging
paper-based mail "of interested parties who could then
keep in touch and prevent themselves losing touch with the ST community
at large (this would be especially easy if someone who still had net
access could summarise current topics or forward news and advice!)"

He is accepting entries in this format:

eg     Simon Chappell.
       s61...@uk.ac.psw.pa (goes away after June)
       51 Amherst Road, Penny-Come-Quick, Plymouth, Devon, PL3 4HJ. UK.
       C, operating systems (UNIX, VMS) & relational databases.

Contact Simon at his e-mail or paper mail address if you are interested.

TIPS AND HINTS from other users
===============================

Any 'multisync' monitor which handles 70 video fields a second can be used
with the ST; the custom cable involves no tricks, or commercial ones are
available.  The original NEC multisync does NOT handle 70 fields a sec.

More than 3 bombs often means more than 1 error, so interpretations are tricky.

An ST-formatted disk which is not readable by a PC can be made readable by
putting the 3 bytes EB 34 90 (those were 3 bytes of hex) at the beginning of
the boot sector (sector 1 of track 0, I believe).  This can be done with
either an ST or PC absolute sector editor.

When using disks formatted on a PC in an ST, make sure to insert and access
a disk with a different serial number in between disk changes.

 ===========================================================================

I would like to thank those who sent messages with suggestions and comments
about my initial posting. I would appreciate feedback, comments, suggestions
for more TIPS AND HINTS, etc.  E-mail can reach me at the following:

        davi...@simvax.labmed.umn.edu             Internet
        davidli@simvax                          BITnet
        davi...@umn-cs.uucp                       USENET