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[News] First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for CatweaselANN.lu
Posted on 08-Feb-2004 01:39 GMT by Jens Schönfeld21 comments
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Arjuna is a modular, expandable solution to access floppy disks from many different systems. It supports the Catweasel Controller to read and write formats not compatible with the standard PC controller. Arjuna is written in C++ and uses Qt for it's GUI. The project by Christoph 'Doc Bacardi' Thelen now has it's own homepage and a mirror on our webspace. The first version 0.6beta is available for download there.

Arjuna is a project that reaches very far into the past, digging deep into almost forgotten knowledge about data storage. At the same time it focusses on the future as a universal tool for data restauration and conversion. Hoping to find a lot of developers to contribute floppy disk formats, Christoph is trying to make this a Sourceforge project.

The Windows version of Arjuna needs an updated driver for the Catweasel to work properly. Download this version here (86K, experimental).
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 1 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by takemehomegrandma on 08-Feb-2004 00:52 GMT
Very cool idea! :-)
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 2 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by redrumloa on 08-Feb-2004 03:59 GMT
Very VERY cool!!! :-D
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 3 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by (Trusted User) on 08-Feb-2004 09:09 GMT
"uses Qt for it's GUI", "The Windows version of Arjuna"

Moderators, would you please remove this crap from ann.lu.

Thank you.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 4 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Frans on 08-Feb-2004 09:21 GMT
In reply to Comment 3 ((Trusted User)):
You don't have to ask, I'm sure your crappy post WILL be removed :-)
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 5 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Jens Schönfeld on 08-Feb-2004 12:14 GMT
I take post #3 as a question "will this be ported to Amiga", and I answer this with "yes". Not sure when, and not sure if it's going to be an overlay library or a real MUI port. Since it's desirable to keep the source as portable as it is right now between Mac, Linux and Windows, some Qt-like thing for the Amiga would be ideal. However, I'm not sure if this can be done in an acceptable timeframe, so it might be a MUI port in the beginning.

Any developers welcome. We've got literally hundreds of disk formats to implement. We also need a Mac developer to implement a basic driver that allows access to the Catweasel hardware. Core routines are provided in C, just add these to a driver frame and you're done (Arjuna only uses direct raw access to the disk, all other functions that the Windows and Linux drivers provide are not used).

Jens Schönfeld
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 6 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Don Cox on 08-Feb-2004 14:37 GMT
In reply to Comment 5 (Jens Schönfeld):
"I take post #3 as a question "will this be ported to Amiga", and I answer this with "yes". Not sure when, and not sure if it's going to be an overlay library or a real MUI port. Since it's desirable to keep the source as portable as it is right now between Mac, Linux and Windows, some Qt-like thing for the Amiga would be ideal. However, I'm not sure if this can be done in an acceptable timeframe, so it might be a MUI port in the beginning."

A MUI port would be ideal, IMO. I see no reason for anything else.


"Any developers welcome. We've got literally hundreds of disk formats to implement. We also need a Mac developer to implement a basic driver that allows access to the Catweasel hardware. Core routines are provided in C, just add these to a driver frame and you're done (Arjuna only uses direct raw access to the disk, all other functions that the Windows and Linux drivers provide are not used)."

Years ago we had a special setup involving a PC (DOS not Windows) with an ISA card and software for reading hundreds of disk formats. Most of them were cp/m formats. Every cp/m computer had a unique format, but they were just combinations of a few basic variables such as sector size, order of sectors on a track, double/single sided, etc. There was a program for trying to identify the format of an unknown disk - very useful.

It came with a stack of drives - 8 inch, 5 inch (2 types), 3.5 inch and 3 inch. The main market was for printing companies, which received documents on a wide variety of disks.

I think now the market will be librarians and archivists. And retro computing hobbyists, of course.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 7 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Jens Schönfeld on 08-Feb-2004 22:20 GMT
In reply to Comment 6 (Don Cox):
Hi Don,

We have the world's biggest digital library in the boat! Nothing written in stone yet (you know, big organisations are always moving slower), but they showed very serious interest in the project. After evaluating the digital copyright acts (there are a fw lawsuits going on), we'll make it official.

That CP/M thing sounds interesting. I have a lot of documentation about these formats here, but not as many sample disks. However, these re-combining things of sector orders and lowlevel formats can be done in the graphbuilder of Arjuna, so there's no need to wait for a new module if you encounter a new disk. You can adapt the reader to the type of disk with a few mouseclicks.

Jens Schönfeld
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 8 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by takemehomegrandma on 08-Feb-2004 22:35 GMT
In reply to Comment 7 (Jens Schönfeld):
Hmm, would it be possible to create your own floppy format? It would be cool to have some takemehomegrandma formated disks!
8-)

Anyway, totally Off Topic (and the main reason for my post):

How is the C=1 coming along? :-)
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 9 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by mbpark on 08-Feb-2004 23:13 GMT
In reply to Comment 7 (Jens Schönfeld):
Jens,

I have this up and running with my Catweasel PCI in Windows 2000 Professional. I am looking forward to working with this to try some things.

And, I have some old-school TRSDOS and CP/M disk formats I'd like to try.

I wrote out a D64 image with this today. Looking forward to using this for a few things, namely making a lot of D64 images of my C64 disks (which is why I bought a catweasel in the first place!).

Jens, you can also mail me about the TRS-80 Model 100 TPDD disks. I talked to Rick Hanson (who runs Club 100 @ www.club100.org), and I see a way of retrieving data from those aging drives using this device, which is the other reason why I bought one of these.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 10 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Darth_X on 08-Feb-2004 23:16 GMT
Hi Jens, I was wondering if there are plans to mass produce the Catweasel and sell it at a lower price to consumers in a larger market? Catweasel currently costs $112 US$, $150CAD$. It costs more than a PC motherboard.

Also, what company in the USA produced the C64 compatible 5.25" floppy disks that you mentioned before?
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 11 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Darth_X on 08-Feb-2004 23:25 GMT
In reply to Comment 3 ((Trusted User)):
Moderators, would you please remove these annoying anonymous posters ;)
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 12 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Darth_X on 08-Feb-2004 23:48 GMT
In reply to Comment 6 (Don Cox):
@Don
> It came with a stack of drives - 8 inch, 5 inch (2 types), 3.5 inch and 3 inch. The main market was for printing companies, which received documents on a wide variety of disks.

> I think now the market will be librarians and archivists. And retro computing hobbyists, of course.

You wouldn't happen to know the name of this product & company that made it?

@Jens

This would be a market to target for. Maybe you will consider creating an embedded portable turnkey solution (perhaps based on the C1 board), or even a device that can be plugged into a PC/MAC laptop with USB port.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 13 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Don Cox on 09-Feb-2004 08:35 GMT
In reply to Comment 12 (Darth_X):
"You wouldn't happen to know the name of this product & company that made it?"

I'm trying to remember - it was about 10 years ago. If the name pops into my head, I'll post it.

IIRC they went over to using the Mac instead of the PC, as they were mainly aiming at the printing and publishing industry.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 14 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Jens Schönfeld on 09-Feb-2004 09:29 GMT
In reply to Comment 9 (mbpark):
I'm hoping to get Tim Mann to port his TRS-80 code into an Arjuna module. His project is open-source anyway, and his software does not work on the later operating systems because he's doing direct hardware access, which is not possible on Win2000 and WinXP.

Jens Schönfeld
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 15 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Jens Schönfeld on 09-Feb-2004 09:44 GMT
Don't want to make too many posts...

Darth_X: The Catweasel can't be very much cheaper with the new ideas I have. I'm aiming at a few added features and a smaller board with the next version, and hopefully a 5-10 EUR lower retail price. Not sure what I'll have to drop for that, because I have a lot of ideas on how to improve the hardware. Another problem I have with non-European countries is that the EUR currency is so strong. My products were 25% cheaper a little over a year ago, and I can hardly make better prices, because the biggest part of the production cost is paid in EUR.

Takemehomegrandma: Of course you can create your own disk format. How about a disk that has every even track formatted in PC sectors, odd tracks in Amiga sectors, using some funny filesystem like that of the MSX machines? (can't remember if that was compatible with DOS, but that's what you can do with Arjuna's Graphbuilder).

Back when the Catweasel was new for the Amiga (November 1996), we created a high-density format to show off the Catweasel's capabilities: 2.3M on a disk. The Amiga operating system acts a bit funny when you're trying to format this disk, because it actually asks you twice if you really want to format it. Something this big must be a harddrive ;-)

Darth_X: Making a turnkey solution would mean that my "production depth" is way higher than it is right now. Since making that turnkey solution does not take an engineer, but more like a reseller who puts together a bundle and approaches the businesses he has in mind, I leave that up to my retail partners. Here's a business opportunity!

Off-Topic: C-One is being worked on every day. <teaser> Expect some news this week, the new drive CPU is finished, and it's burning tires in the simulator. </teaser>

Jens Schönfeld
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 16 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Don Cox on 09-Feb-2004 11:33 GMT
In reply to Comment 15 (Jens Schönfeld):
This is the company that made the setup we had. They appear to now be part of a larger group, and no longer selling hardware. Maybe they would like to license the Catweasel?

http://www.intermedia.uk.com/
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 17 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Don Cox on 09-Feb-2004 11:37 GMT
In reply to Comment 15 (Jens Schönfeld):
"Darth_X: The Catweasel can't be very much cheaper with the new ideas I have. I'm aiming at a few added features and a smaller board with the next version, and hopefully a 5-10 EUR lower retail price. Not sure what I'll have to drop for that, because I have a lot of ideas on how to improve the hardware. "

I would really like to be able to use an Amiga trackball on my Amithlon (or in the future, AmigaOne). I remember you said that although the socket is there, the Catweasel isn't fast enough to work as a mouse port. (And the trackball is faster than a mouse).

Better to have all the features and a higher price, IMO.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 18 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by Don Cox on 09-Feb-2004 11:40 GMT
In reply to Comment 12 (Darth_X):
"You wouldn't happen to know the name of this product & company that made it?"

Intermedia
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 19 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by mbpark on 09-Feb-2004 18:49 GMT
In reply to Comment 14 (Jens Schönfeld):
Jens,

This is a completely different disk format for the TPDD and TPDD-2 drives :).

They used a 9600 baud serial link, and straight encoding on the disk to accomplish their task.
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 20 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by hairyneanderthal on 10-Feb-2004 00:45 GMT
Does anyone know if this works within WinUAE?
First version of Arjuna, new Windows drivers for Catweasel : Comment 21 of 21ANN.lu
Posted by redrumloa on 10-Feb-2004 12:04 GMT
In reply to Comment 20 (hairyneanderthal):
Arjuna or the Catweasel itself? The Catweasel itself does work under WinUAE.
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