A project log for The PCW Project

Doing things with an Amstrad PCW

james-otsJames Ots 10/12/2017 at 23:330 Comments

Having said that all I did this evening was cleaning, I then remembered I had some files I wanted to transfer to the PCW. So I plugged in my homemade serial port and got copying.

When I got my first PCW, the LocoScript disk was corrupt, which meant I didn't have MAIL232.COM available for copying programmes from my PC to the PCW. So initially, the only way of copying files across was by using PIP. I can't remember the exact details of how I did it, but I believe it involved sending MAIL232 in hex format over a slow connection, which I then had to compare visually and correct and transmission errors. Then I think I had to write a programme which converted the hex file to an executable — I don't remember if this was in assembler, or Mallard BASIC. Once MAIL232 was working, I was then able to transfer kermit, which is the software I now use.

After doing a fair amount of experimenting I managed to get a good set of settings for making reliable transfers, although I can't go very fast before things start to break down. These are my settings (I'm using ckermit on Ubuntu on the PC):

Type this on the PCW:

A> setsio 9600 int on hand on xon off
A> kermit
kermit> set baud 9600
kermit> set flow-control off
kermit> set file-mode binary

Type this on the PC (I know, sudo is bad. But I keep forgetting to set up permissions for /dev/ttyUSB0 properly):

$ sudo kermit
kermit> set line /dev/ttyUSB0
kermit> set baud 9600
kermit> set carrier-watch off
kermit> set flow-control rts/cts
kermit> set file type binary

To send a file, first I type 'get filename' on the PCW, and then 'send filename' on the PC. To receive a file I have to type 'receive filename' (not get) on the PC and 'send filename' on the PCW.