Category Archives: Casette Software

A little bit about: Preserving Apple II casette-based software:

Apple and other publishers, released software on c-casette tapes since 1977 to early 1980’s
The c-casette tape was the only way to save your data until the Disk II became available in June 1978 ($495). And of course, it took time when it became dominant format for saving data on your Apple ][.

casette_2_s
Recently i obtained some Apple ][ software tapes that did require preservation. All others
but “Mimic” were already preserved by Antoine Vignau of the great Brutaldeluxe,
http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr so i took the task to preserve the “Mimic”-casette release. To me, this was first ever (original) casette software for the Apple ][, so this was all “new” to me even i knew the process more or less.

Last time i’ve copied software tapes was back in mid 80’s when i realized i could actually copy
the software tapes with double-deck c-casette players. That was start of something.. wonderfull (and brought to me lots of new friends).

These came with the box (rather rare to happen thesedays) so i will scan them and the manuals as well and they’ll appear on Antoine’s collection later on.

software_tapes_s
Instant Software-releases from 1979:
-Math Tutor I 20k (0073A)
-Sahara Warriors: Commando, French Foreigh Legion 8k (0080A)
-Mimic 24k (0025A)
-Manual for : Math Fun 6 32k (0160AD)

Also additional tape came with these, it seems to have Star Trek game on it which i had to preserve as well. It was one of these “just in case” situations. Save everything, analyze later.

What is required in order to preserve the software tapes?
-Casette deck/player
-Audio cable
-Audacity -software
-Ciderpress -software

The setup:casettedeck_s
Nothing odd or difficult. Connecting the casette-deck to your computer, in this case, Pioneer CT-F650, i obtained from a colleque at work to laptop (Macbook Pro) with suitable cables (2*RCA->minijac). See that the possible DOLBY-setting is OFF.

Reading:
-Using Audacity (WAV, 22kHz, 8-bit mono) to read the casette (or the data off it if you know excatly how much there is) to single, non-compressed .wav file. Reading “too much” (i.e. whole side of the casette) doesnt matter.

We are going to save the .wav file(s) as master/original file, but also, convert the .wav back to file-format in order to keep it (and it’s easier to be used) in DOS 3.2 or DOS 3.3 disk image.

Converting (to disk image):import-files-from-wav_2
Create empty DOS 3.2/3.3 -disk image, and using Ciderpress, import the files from the .wav file to the  disk image. Import : actions > import file from WAV, choose the file and press >IMPORT<

import-files-from-wav_3
You can setup when importing the files the file-name, if it’s Binary, aAplesoft or Integer BASIC.
-Mimic loader
-Mimic program

instant_software_presents_sLoading program:

mimic_start_screen_s
Mimic-menu:

mimic_game_screen_s
Mimic-the game:


Some good ideas:

-Do fast forward the tape back and forth few times if the tape have not been used for long time. The tape might be stuck due heat and lack of usage.

 

Links:
Collection of Apple II tape software:
http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/projects/cassettes/index.html

By Apple: The format of data on the tape
http://support.apple.com/kb/TA40730

By Apple: Read and write routines from the monitor
http://support.apple.com/kb/TA40737

 

FinApple 2017 (c)
Apple ][ forever
http://kasettilamerit.fi

Special thanks to Antoine Vignau of Brutaldeluxe.fi

 

Roadtrip: Swedish Apple’s

It all begins when i was contacted by Peter Fuks, who was an Chairman of the AUG (Apple User’s Group Sweden) in 1999-2002.

http://A2central.com
Apple User Group of Sweden – formed in the early 1980s, the AUG still has 30-35 enthusiastic members. The group usually meets twice a year in Stockholm and Gothenburg, usually 5-10 people each, and has an extensive software library, ”mostly older games on 5.25? disks. To join the group, the fee is 150 Swedish crowns (US $10) per year. For more information, visit the group’s web site at http://www.appleusergroup.org.

So Peter offered some Apple ][ material he needed to dispose due need of space and lack of time as well other hobbies taking time when he got retired and he knew i could preserve the software and if there were, anything else, paper material for the other users and for the future.

I was very honored and we figured out the dates as i’d need to travel from Finland to Sweden with ferry and take my car with me. It took some months to find the suitable dates and i booked the tickets to Viking Line-ferry that goes from Helsinki to Stockholm. It’s about 16.5 hour per side with the boat so it would take about two days for the trip in total.

Leaving: “It was Roadtrip time!”on_boat_s
So it was roadtrip time! My friend Marko joined me to the trip and i picked him from train station and we headed to the ferry. I booked the tickets so i could drive the car in the boat first, and get out, first. That would save time and nerves.

leaving_boat_inside_s
Lots of cars and trucks use the ferries to get over the sea to Sweden.

Arriving: “Så här är vi i sverige”
Arriving at 10:00 to Sweden. Weather was nice but slightly clowdy. Nice and dry compared to Finland when we left..

Driving to: “On our way to Järfälla”
Järfälla is about 20km away from downtown Stockholm to north-west so it’s rather easy task to drive there and back. There’s not that much time as the boat leaves back in afternoon but enough for quick round trip there. Or so we thought.. My GPS-navigator is about 10 years old that was however ok, it did work out well. Just IF i would have believed the route it offered.. I tried to use my own very easy, very fast route that i could now however track from the GPS-device itself…  so we drove some 15km to wrong direction first then i started to actually pay attention to the GPS and changed the route… and we found the place. Rather easily in the end 🙂

At Peter’s home: “Meeting Peter”
jorma_peter_marko_s
Me, Peter and Marko:

Peter and his wife, Gunnel, were waiting. So we drinked some coffee, talked about the tech in general (Peter collects old radios and those are so beautiful!) and the loaded up the car. We were sadly bit on a tight schedule so there were not so much time i was hoping. Peter and Gunnel were as nice people as you could think of.

Peter’s Computers:
peter_fuks_s

Peter have/have had, lots of Apple ][ computers over the years. He had kept two i think, of Apple //e’s. The main unit he had was really COOL hacked one with just motherboard inside, external keyboard, HDD, 5.25″ and 3.5″ drives with powersupply in another external case!
He had Slotbuster, Phasor cards on his board among PC Transporter setup. What an great period perfect hack-unit!

peters_apple_iie_s
Inside of the Peter’s Apple //e with SlotBuster-card.

 

Leaving: “Heading back to Stockholm”
apple_ii_from_sweden_packed_s
Car packed with Apple ][-goodies..

leaving_sweden_s

Getting back to the ferry thru downtown Stockholm was easier than i tought. The GPS took us thru the oldtown of the Stockholm and thru the  construction area of Slussen, but the route was so FAST. We got in time to the ferry and even had to wait quite a bit to get in.

getting_into_ferry_s
Waiting to drive the car inside the ferry at Stockholm harbor.

At home:
Roadtrip was over! Took about 40 hours for the total trip or so.

Of cos when getting home, i unloaded the material to my work/hobby/mancave-room but only few hours later, had time to start looking into them (i was exicited of cos).

What were there?apple_iis_s
Apple ][-case : REAL ][ but no serial number on bottom for some reason, only reads “2000”, Apple //e (taiwanese clone), Apple //e.

pineapple_board_s
Pineapple : Apple II+ clone motherboard + ROM card

boards_cards_sApple //e international NTSC board, CP/M card (Microsoft card clone) with Microsoft Softcard manuals & floppies. The //e board reads “broken” so it might need some work to get it working again.

user_news_swedish_s
The Swedish Apple User’s Group (AUG Sweden) “User News” – magazines from 1982-1983.
These are very interesting! These all will be scanned of cos.

books-catalogs_2_s
Manuals of all kinds and some game manuals for various games (copied), Apple II books etc. Some of the books “Bag of Tricks” and “Beneath the Apple DOS” seems to be Taiwanese/Hongkong copies. Deep Dark Castle Magazine’s are interesting, somesort of BBS-user’s magazine i think?

books-catalogs_s
Few books, catalogs, Beagle Bros. manuals, Pineapple catalog/magazine.

books-catalogs_3_s
Apple Answer Books Vol.1 and 2 and some manuals and catalogs.

softcard_s
Microsoft Softcard manuals with disks (13-sector).

original_software_s
Original games (EPYX)) and Apple Special Delivery title and even one Apple /// software.

software_tapes_s
Early (1979) original games in casette with boxes (!). These things are quite rare.

magazines_sMagazines of all kinds: Call A.P.P.L.E., Nibble, Byte, InCider, User’s News (Swedish) etc.

broderbund_sBroderbund – catalogs.

hdd_s
Heavy-beast, HDD-drive (assuming 5MB) with the interface card. Never have had an “real hdd” with Apple ][ before.

hdd_back_s
Connections in the back. Made in Sweden i’d say.

card_connection_s
Interface-card.

scsi_card_s
Model/number.

floppies_s
Floppies : about 50 pcs (Apple II and CP/M).

Lots of material to be preserved! It’s like christmas for geeky Apple ][ guy like me.

FinApple 2017 (c)
Apple ][ forever.

 

Apple ][ casette software

Back in the day, the software was delivered in C-casette tapes before the 5.25″ floppies were used by Apple.

This box “Apple Software bank” – was donated to me but did not contain any tapes, but instead Disk ][-controller ROM chips. Still, very neat find!

apple-casette-software-front

apple-casette-software-inside

apple-casette-software-back

original

This is how the box looked with the tape inserted inside.

If you’re interested in software on casette-tapes, there’s great project by Antoine Vignau of Brutal Deluxe, in France, to digitize and preserve the tapes :

http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/projects/cassettes/index.html