Looking for North star software

Fred Cisin cisin at xenosoft.com
Mon Jul 2 19:48:37 CDT 2018

On Tue, 3 Jul 2018, dwight wrote:
> I was thinking someone has already done this. If no, as you say, it is 
> not an impossible task.

It can be done.  It has been done.  It is not the easiest.
A friend did it, but he died 4 years ago, and his stuff is GONE.
There should be GOOGLE reachable stories of how people have done it, and 
some .ASM or .HEX files of useful utilities.

> The TSS/B is suppose to be their scientific package. It at least has 
> BASIC in it. I have another disk marked CP/M in the same box. I should 
> be able to put something together under CP/M.

If you have CP/M, in a bootable form, then the utilities that come with 
CP/M (PIP, LOAD, SAVE, . . . ) can be coerced into creating a 
bootstrapping program to bring stuff over, to bring over more versatile 
utilities, etc.   PIP.COM, alas, is not an internal command.
If you use a PC as your terminal, you can come up with ways to move code.
You can PIP from the console.   (to bring over a .ASM or .HEX file)

> It is a North Star Horizon. There seems to be some images out there so I 
> don't know how they are being captured.

The images are probably created on a NorthStar.

There exist some rather rare hardware boards for PC to read/write hard 
sector.  Not easily available.
It may be possible to use a flux-transition board that has access to the 
index signal and write code to do it.
BUT, the Horizon can also manage 8" drives (SSSD soft-sector CP/M 
standard!) with appropriate controller, or use other S100 FDC boards.
Once the CP/M system is up, there are utilities that have been written for 
it (some assembly required), for serial port transfer.

I have no idea what's available for NorthStar-DOS, but there is probably 
something around.

I think that the original drives of the Horizon were Shugart SA400, but 
Tandon TM100-x should work just fine.

Good luck,
Grumpy Ol' Fred     		cisin at xenosoft.com

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