Fred Cisin cisin at
Mon Feb 1 17:28:21 CST 2021

> On Mon, 1 Feb 2021, John Foust via cctalk wrote:
>> I heard about this today and I'm surprised I hadn't heard about it
>> on this list before.
>> Flux reading and writing from all sizes of floppy?
>> Anyone here using one?  I'd love to get it working for 8 inch,
>> 5 1/4, 3 1/2 drives here in my shop.
On Mon, 1 Feb 2021, geneb via cctalk wrote:
> I've got one (F7+ Lightning version) and I've used it with 5.25" and 8" 
> disks.  I've got plans to use it with 8" disks, but I've not done it yet. 
> You'll need to get the FDADAP from here: in 
> order to use it with the GW.

If you are READing 8" disks, and ONLY READing, then you can get away with 
a simpler caable.  The main time that you might need the fdadap is for 
TG43 for writing.  But, the fdadap is a convenient way to not have to make 
a cable.

It looks promising.

The docs on the website are a little thin.  It could use some instructions 
written for somebody who has never seen it before.
For example,
" type gw -h  to see available commands" could certainly stand to be 
expanded to list the commands, and provide discussion of what each 
one does.  Even if it is "obvious".
The examples for Specifying Tracks were not bad, but could use some 
beginner support, such as explaining that heads are 0,1 and a 40 track 
drive numbers from 0-39, not 1-40, etc.

Documentation should also always include a list of EVERY error 
code, with a more detailed explanation of what each one actually means.
And, some explanations of how to tell whether you need to do double 
stepping, including what the incorrect results will look like if you get 
it wrong.
Including what the resulting file will look like for trying to read an 
unformatted track.
Explanation of FM, MFM, and GCR encoding, or at least pointers to places 
where those are discussed.

But, it is not the worst example that I have ever seen of:
"It doesn't need any documentation.  Just run the program.  The menus in 
the program tell you everything that you could need to know."

With XenoCopy, I found that I needed to include a
    Quick Start
    A Tutorial
    A Reference
Even with that, an enormous amount of handholding was needed.  Including, 
of course, answers to questions of HOW-TO do thing that the program 
clearly stated it could not do, such as reading Apple 5.25" disks without 
additional hardware.

More information about the cctech mailing list