QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

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martyn_hill
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby martyn_hill » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:02 am

Hi Pete!

Possibly - perhaps you could expand your description of the problem you're trying to solve?

To hazard a first guess, if the current roadblock is being able to access the files (applications?) on an unexpanded QL due to lack of local modern storage, then yes - if you arrange for the library of files/programs needed to be hosted 'in' an emulated QL on a PC to which the other QLs have access via a QL network link (and the QLUB adapter, of course), the files could be accessed on the QLs.

In its current limited form, you would have to 'push' the required files out to each QL, whilst simultaneously LOADing them at the remote end, whilst once I've completed the integration of the Net code/MQ Server in to QDOS/SMSQe, then running FSERVE inside the emulator would make the hosted files accessible via the 'Nx' driver on each QL - assuming they have TK2 (in ROM.)

Is that the tree you were barking up?


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vanpeebles
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby vanpeebles » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:10 am

I think so! I was thinking like a raspberry pi, with a usb to ql network lead, to act like some kind of file server.


martyn_hill
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby martyn_hill » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:17 am

OK, so quite possibly...

If uQLX (or QPC on WINE) is run on the rPi AND if there is a 'USB virtual COM Port' driver available for the rPi AND once I've completed the fully OS integrated version (rather than just the SBASIC app available today), then this could be an option :-)


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Peter
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby Peter » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:26 am

mk79 wrote:
Peter wrote:but as you emphasize open source for your project, the dependency on proprietary / closed-source emulators is a bit sad.
Yes, and in the same vain we should strive to improve the MiSTer core to the point where we don't have to rely on the closed source Q68 for an SMSQ/E FPGA core in the future :D :D :D Sorry, couldn't resist.

Much unlike Martyn's project, I never said the Q68 was intended an open-source solution. Most of the Q68 is closed source, and I have always been clear about that. The only open-source component is the CPU core, which is released under LGPL, as the Q68 manual states. My debugging results were all contributed back, and are published by the author himself. There is no "same vain" here at all.

But as you promote your MiSTer cores here as an open source alternative to the Q68, why do your website visitors not get any source code with the MiSTer binaries you publish? Or any hint about the licenses of the code others have written and you are using in your binaries?

If it gives you a triple "very happy" smile when people use a commercial evaluation board, subsidized by a multimilion $ company in order to promote its semiconductors, rather than a dedicated piece of QL hardware built by a british hobbyist, I have no ambitions to keep you from it.

However, the "we" in "we don't have to rely on the closed source Q68" makes me wonder if you ever relied on the Q68, or where your group identity with the users comes from?
I was not aware you had any interest in my machine.


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Peter
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby Peter » Thu Dec 31, 2020 1:36 am

martyn_hill wrote:The principal design just needs a means of byte-serial communications with the world 'outside' the emulator in a near real-time manner using whatever QDOS driver is available within the emulation environment in question. It is a pity that Java - and thus SMSQmulator - make it difficult/impossible to attach to the host's COM Port (if I have understood the limitation correctly.) Perhaps Wolfgang has some thoughts on this topic? I'll drop him a line at some point.

Maybe your driver inside the emulator could access a network server (on the host) by UDP or TCP, which then handles the serial port? Not very nice to need an extra server though.


martyn_hill
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby martyn_hill » Thu Dec 31, 2020 10:46 am

Hi Peter

Peter wrote:Maybe your driver inside the emulator could access a network server (on the host) by UDP or TCP, which then handles the serial port? Not very nice to need an extra server though.


That would be trivial enough form within the code written - to open a UDP socket instead of the SER device - but would then need a native Windows/Unix/MacOS app to be written to bridge between UDP and the local COM Port... Not my strength, but something I could certainly look in to...


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Peter
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby Peter » Thu Dec 31, 2020 11:26 am

If Wolfgang has no better idea, and you don't find that approach too clumsy anyway, I could also have quick look into writing such a server at least for Linux and Windoze. Would it be better to define a packet format, or just go byte-by-byte?


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Chr$
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby Chr$ » Thu Dec 31, 2020 12:00 pm

While you're there ;) .... It needs a Smartphone app too, so that data can be sent to a QL from Android and iOS with a QLUB in between!

(is that even theoretically possible out of interest?)


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom XT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
QXLII card installed in a PC
Q40 and Q68 also present

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Peter
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby Peter » Thu Dec 31, 2020 1:08 pm

The QLUB adapter is intended for use from within a QL emulator, so one would need that for Android first. Since JAVA is (beside Kotlin) one of the official programming languages for Android, this would again speak for the JAVA-written SMSQmulator. I can imagine that SMSQmulator would even work already, although I find a smartphone not nice for emulating a QL. Virtual serial USB ports are also doable under Android, so I'd say yes, theoretically possible. The smartphone would need USB OTG support, which most modern ones have.

By the way, there are even ethernet adapters for smartphones. So if you can use the Q68 as a bridge to the QL network, the new Q68 UDP connectivity might also do the trick with SMSQmulator. Obviously more expensive and space consuming than Martyn's nice little adapter, but a possible gimmick if one has a Q68 on the desk anyway.


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Chr$
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Re: QLUB Adapter - Initial Release...

Postby Chr$ » Thu Dec 31, 2020 2:29 pm

Peter wrote:I find a smartphone not nice for emulating a QL.

I agree, silly little screens etc, but I was thinking of simply an app 'terminal' to send files to/from a QL, it wouldn't need to be a full emulator at all (same applies in other OS environments in connection with QLUB - I can't help thinking of the Sinclair newsletter of the same name whenever I read that - Martyn, how about QL_USB? It may be clearer as to what it does).
Peter wrote:By the way, there are even ethernet adapters for smartphones. So if you can use the Q68 as a bridge to the QL network, the new Q68 UDP connectivity might also do the trick with SMSQmulator. Obviously more expensive and space consuming than Martyn's nice little adapter, but a possible gimmick if one has a Q68 on the desk anyway.

Great, maybe I'll experiment with that one day. Currently I'm happy moving around with an SD card. I probably need the exercise! :oops:


Collector of QL related computers, accessories and software even though I don't really understand how they work.
Original QL's: many (plus quite a bit of other old stuff and 140+ original software titles)
Custom XT cased QL system with Gold Card, Qimi mouse, Hermes and MFM HDD
QXLII card installed in a PC
Q40 and Q68 also present

Ask me about near NOS re-felted good quality Microdrive Carts - many available.

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