Carnivore 2 help

By Curriculum Crasher

Supporter (7)

Curriculum Crasher's picture

07-08-2018, 18:31

I'm a new MSX user and just acquired a pre-built Carnivore 2 cart from 8bits4ever. The games on the boot menu all work fine, but I am stuck in trying to use the CF card for adding additional ROMs. My CF is a SanDisk 4GB, which I formatted to FAT16 on my PC, and I'm using a Panasonic FS-A1F (FDD is currently not working).

I can only boot the Carnviore 2 to Nextor BASIC, so the c2man commands create a syntax error and I cannot use them to create a boot configuration that disables all but IDE Sunrise. And, as indicated in the readme.tx, if I boot with all enabled, which is the default, I cannot use the _fdisk utility to select my CF card. It just freezes.

Since Carnivore 2 is my first flash cart, I do not know how else to load NEXTOR.SYS and other files that are suggested. I see a workaround for some has been using another flash card and slot, but I do not have another flash cart or card that was already formatted and partitioned for loading files to my MSX.

Is there another way to boot with all but IDE Sunrise disabled? It seems to me that would be a useful configuration on the pre-built Carnivore 2's boot menu.

I appreciate any assistance that can be provided. Thank you!

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By Alexey

Guardian (1663)

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07-08-2018, 21:34

You can format the CF card and put the necessary files on it using the PC with Windows. The partition must be FAT16, 4gB in size. Then you need to extract this archive into the root folder of the partition:

http://podrezov.com/temp/nextor.7z

Password: nextor

Then you will be able to boot to MSX-DOS2 on your MSX with this CF card.

By Curriculum Crasher

Supporter (7)

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10-08-2018, 21:58

Thank you, Alexey. With your information and some additional tips from 8bits4ever regarding Windows 7, I was able to get it working. If anyone has a similar issue, feel free to send me a direct message and I can explain the workaround I used.

By Manuel

Ascended (14683)

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10-08-2018, 22:03

Why not just explain it once, here?

By djh1697

Paragon (1360)

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11-08-2018, 01:08

I found it was better to format the CF card on my MSX, using the C2, then copy the files. I used the _fdisk command from Basic, then copied the files.

By Curriculum Crasher

Supporter (7)

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11-08-2018, 21:14

Yes, I did the CF formatting on MSX too, but first I had to find a way to to boot MSX DOS from C2 using the CF.

Sure. I’ll go ahead and post here. I hope it is helpful. This may be a roundabout way, but this worked for me having no other flash card or prior experience with MSX beyond a couple original game carts.

Windows 7, SanDisk 4gb CF, Panasonic FS-A1F
1. Used a low level formatting tool from hddguru.com to completely zero out the CF.
2. Used the disk manager in Windows 7 to format the entire CF to “FAT” (FAT16).
3. Used the disk manager in Windows 7 to make entire CF one big partition. OK’d the warning that the partition size would be too big for older versions of MS DOS.
4. Downloaded the archive folder from the link in Alexey’s reply above.
5. Expanded 7z and moved all the files into the CF’s root directory.
6. Put CF in Carnivore 2 and booted up MSX2.
7. From Carnivore 2 Boot menu I hit RETURN and held DEL to go right to Nextor DOS.
8. Typed BASIC to go to Nextor BASIC.
9. Typed CALL FDISK
10. “1” for Sunrise IDE Driver
11. “1” for Hard Disk
12. “1” for first (and only) unit
13. “D” to delete existing partitions (yes, this includes files that were added)
14. “P” to add new partition. I made a few 50 MB partitions. “S” will show ones that were made.
15. ESC to main menu.
16. “W” to write the partitions.
17. Turned off MSX2 and connected CF back to Windows 7. The partitions created with Nextor were then visible in Windows 7 Disk Manager.
18. Moved the same group of files back on CF root directory again.
19. Also added C2MAN.COM and C2MAN40.COM (for MSX1) files to root directory. They are available on Carnivore 2 Github page.
20. Returned CF to cart and turned on MSX to Carnivore 2 boot menu.
21. Again hit RETURN and held DEL to go to Nextor DOS.
22. C2MAN command
23. Entered “10” for slot 1
24. Reached C2MAN utility menu
25. After this I was able to load ROMs on CF from Windows 7. I also added any relevant RCP files (on Github page) and changed ROM names to match RCP names so they would be identified.

Cheers!

By djh1697

Paragon (1360)

djh1697's picture

12-08-2018, 16:06

Sorted? I use SofaRUN, it works well with ROM and DSK images. No need to flash them either. I have a 4Gb flash card, you should be able to use it as one partition? It is up to you how you partition it at the end of the day? You should back you CF up too. I would make a backup on your PC, or a suitable NAS drive. ALL my MSX software is backup on my NAS drive.

By Meits

Scribe (5122)

Meits's picture

12-08-2018, 20:04

You put several partitions on your CF card and put it back in your Windows PC?
Be careful with that. I've heard spooky stories of people losing their partition table because Windows 7 was thinking to help the user by totally fn00king it up. Therefore I never tried putting my partitioned master CF in my PC (I use a master and slave system where the slave is a 32MB CF card with just one FAT12 partition).

Could be coincidence that this happened to these guys I know, but I don't trust Windows with certain CF cards... yet...

By Curriculum Crasher

Supporter (7)

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13-08-2018, 21:23

Thanks for the tip regarding Windows 7 and the partitions. Incidentally, I'm not a Windows 7 user. I just used a different computer and Windows 7 to do these steps, as that was recommended by 8bits4ever when I did not have success using the utilities with Mac OS and Windows 10. After getting Carnivore 2 to work, I've been using Mac OS to put ROMs on the CF. The four partitions I created show up as separate drives on my MAC's desktop, and they appear to match the partitions correctly. When I click on one of the drives to eject it, the Mac OS finder asks if I want to eject all four of them, to which I reply YES. I haven't had any issues with several exchanges between the MSX and Mac OS...yet. But a good reminder to backup the CF.

By Manuel

Ascended (14683)

Manuel's picture

13-08-2018, 21:45

For full clarity: steps 1 to 5 can be skipped, as they were undone later.

By Curriculum Crasher

Supporter (7)

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14-08-2018, 03:02

Yes. For most people those steps can probably be skipped. However, per original post, I was unsuccessful when I started from step 6; I had no other way to boot MSX2 DOS and to access the NEXTOR.SYS and COMMAND2.COM files on my CF that were needed, since the FDISK utility would freeze whenever I selected my CF card. Without those files, I could not use the C2MAN utility to create a different boot configuration to disable all but the IDE Driver as specified in the readme.

I shared this here in case someone else had the same issue as me and wanted to try what was recommend to me by 8bits4ever.

My MSX profile