Commodore Amiga Retro

Amiga Format

AMIGA FORMAT: Issue 130 Dec 1999


Two pages of adverts for: CD Games, Productivity,
Emulators, Aminet CD`s, Peripherals, Cables etc.


There`s life in the classic Amiga yet! News has
reached us that a consortium of 12 Amiga hardware
designers are getting together to offer a new
classic motherboard.

Power Computing have called together a group of
designers to create a motherboard with plenty
of essential peripherals for the user.

Although details at this time are sketchy, the
new machine is planned to be backwardly compatible
in every sense with existing Amiga 1200`s ( mainly )
but will offer increased flexibility and power.
The new design is thought to be based around the
new Z4 concept offering extremely low cost Zorro II,
accelerated Zorro II and Z4 connectors to allow for
plenty of upgrading.


And I thought last month was interesting .. this month
we`ve had to deal with the fact that Amiga arn`t going
to make the MCC as it currently stands any longer, but
are concentrating on offering those things that make
the Amiga unique, to all and sundry ( like they deserve
it ! )


Never let it be said that the Amiga industry isn`t
an interesting one. Fleecy Moss, whom you should
all remember as the man who got the boot from Amiga
for his outspoken but visionary ways, and Bill McEwen,
Amiga`s erstwhile PR guy , have joined together with
one other person to form Amino...

What Amiga users need right now is someone to say
this is what we`re going to do and do it. They
don`t want anymore broken promises.

Amino... is intended to be an easier upgrade path
for current Amigans than the complete remodelling
that Amiga are intending to do.


Tom Schmidt, the new CEO of Amiga, has decided to
cancel the Amiga MCC machine due to go on sale early
next year. The net community took this as a great
affront which Schmidt decided to try and take
head on, According to him: " The ideals and spirit
of the original Amiga are alive and well today. But
to limit Amiga to just one box , one product, one
OS, is to keep Amiga from ever seeing its full
potential.... "


Motorola have launched their new breed of PowerPC
processors but are already talking about the next
generation. Hot on the heels of the release of the
PPC7400, the first of their G4 line, Motorola have
released a roadmap detailing their future strategy.


During the pre-Gateway limbo years there was no
shortage of people willing to suggest that we, the
Amiga community, should get together and make a bid
to buy the platform and orchestrate its regeneration.
I used to dismiss such ideas as well intentioned
but hopelessly naive dreams.....

... Now, in the wake of countless farcical changes
of direction and personnel at the Gateway-owned
Amiga, it doesn`t seem such a bad idea after all.
With that breadth of knowledge and experience,
great things might just have been possible.


Wirenet Amiga Internet is going to be offering
free weekend access to the Internet from November.
All subscribers will be able to log onto the
Internet using a Freecall 0800 number from midnight
Friday until midnight Sunday, at no extra charge.


Rumours have been circulating of a possible deal
between Motorola and AMD`s new Dresden plant
manufacturing Motorola`s G4 chips.


1: The A1000 has the signatures of all the Amiga
designers in it, including Mitchy the dog.

2: The A4000`s chip memory jumper that allows
you to switch between 2 and 8MB chip RAM ( it
doesn`t work before you get your hopes up )
was termed the "free beer" jumper by Dave Haynie.

3: The A4000, and AGA, were originally intended
as upgrades for the A3000. You were going to be
able to buy a replacement motherboard with AGA,
Ethernet and DSP, but still with SCSI and a
hardware flicker fixer. Commodore got stuck in
and made the A4000 the way it is today.

4: The original name for a system software failure
on the Amiga was a Guru Meditation. The name comes
from the early pre-Commodore days of Amiga development.
As a smoke-screen for their real activities, the
Amiga /HiTorro team pretended to be making joysticks
and other game controllers. One of their designs
was for a joyboard - a surfboard which could be used
as a input device. When a software failure befell
one of the gurus creating the OS, he had to sit on
the joyboard and meditate.

5: AmigaOS will be largely unaffected by the millennium
bug that is causing panic in the majority of the
computing world. The AmigaOS timer.device measures
system time as the number of seconds that have elapsed
since January 1 1978 - which it stores as a 32-bit
number. This will overflow some time in 2114. Problems
occur with some other AmigaOS components, however, since
they treat this 32-bit number as signed. From January
19th 2046 03:14:07 the number of seconds elapsed will
be negative and so the date will be invalid.

6: Sam Jordon, the creator of the WarpUp PowerPC kernel
for the Amiga, is a bit of a Trekkie. One of WarpUps
housekeeping tasks is called Enterprise and another

7: Amiga spotting is a popular past-time for the die
hard Amiga enthusiasts. It involves noting down every
television and film appearance made by an Amiga
computer. Amigas have popped up in Red Dwarf,
Inspector Morse, The Krypton Factor, The Net, Rolf`s
Cartoon Club, Sledgehammer and The Bill.

8: Although by default Arexx is assigned to S: on a
standard start-up sequence, one of the first changes
you should make is to assign it to its own directory,
saving your S: directory from getting clogged up.

9: If you use Directory Opus as a Workbench
replacement you can find a couple of hidden features
there too. One is to open the About requester, hold
down Shift then click on the animated logo repeatedly.
The other is to make use of the Eliza program in
the Opus shell by typing "Help me eliza!".

10: The first replacement case for the Amiga - A1500
from Checkmate Digital - was tested for strength
in Amiga Format by standing on it....

.............. [snip]

39: Where are they now -
Jay Miner - deceased
Carl Sassenrath - President Rebol
RJ Mical - Former VP 3DO
Dale Luck - Master Software Architect 3DO
Andy Finkel - Met@box Infonet
Dave Haynie - V.P. Technology Met@box Infonet
Michael Sinz - NextBus ( produces information for PT )


50: We made it ... OS Group: M.Sinz, D.Greenwald,
R.Jesup, J.Horanoff GFX: S.Shanson, C. Green, J. Barklay
GUI: P.Cherna, M. Taillefer, D. Junod, K. Kuwata
NET: B. Jackson, G. Miller, K. Dyke SP: E. Cotton,
P.Pawlik Others: Porter, Bryce, Lauren, Others:
a Havemose, Ned, Carolyn, CATS.


Connect to your ISP, pull your emails, download a
150K file and log off again in less time than it
usually take just to log on.

EYELINE: Advert - Latest news -

Phase 5 PPC G4 & Cybervision NG cards. We will be the
first to have these new cards in stock so why not
reserve yours now ? No funds will be taken until the
goods are shipped.


Adventurer`s Lair - Adventure to uncharted lands.
Whale`s Voyage 2 - A science fiction, role-playing
strategic trading adventure.

SCREEN PLAY: Previews -

Ben Vost concentrates on Heretic II for this issues
previews section.

Foundation - The Directors Cut - 90%
Starfighter - D`Yammen`s reign - 55%
Turbo Racer 3D - racing game - 28%


The new Z4 - the ultimate A1200 bus board.


BugZ - Mark Botfield - Blitz Basic
Race - Rune Bernstenn - Assembler
Soccer Dream Manager - David Sykes - Amos
Survivor - Scooter - Amos Pro


Richard Drummond has gathered and stored a fine
selection of wares for the dark autumnal months
ahead but he`s always willing to share...

The Amiga, despite being the first real multimedia
computer, does not cope well with today`s processor
demanding multimedia formats. This is partly because
of major players in this area of technology will not
design to support the lowly Amiga. The other is that
the Amiga`s ageing hardware architecture is just not
up to the job. But, wait a minute, yo think. It`s an
ideal task for that muscley PowerPC board I splashed
my mone on. Well we`ll see.

Soft Cinema V0.5 - playing the Lithtech animation from
AFCD43: What this doesn`t convey is that it`s ambling
along at 11fps.

PFSDefragTry V37.4 - is dull to watch but rather useful.
TotalCalc 1.23 - 13-digit hand held scientific calculator.
Brain Race - a racing game with arithmetic.
SimpleFTP V1.6 - stand alone FTP client.
WordConverter 0.9.8 - converts documents from Word


Simon Goodwin seriously expands an A1200 that might
yet rival his A4000. The Apollo Z4 offers five
16-bit Zorro II sockets, four A1200 style clock-port
headers, two new Z4 connectors and an optional
video slot, but no DMA.


Simon Goodwin tests Allegro CDFS from Elbox via
Power Computing.

The Amiga is not short of CD File systems but Allegro
supports DVD drives and fills a gap in the software
bundled with Elbox IDE adapters.


Simon Goodwin enjoys the neatest `clockport` seriel
booster yet.

Installation is automatic, without options or questions.
The ingenious and stylish startup script seems to take
account of every possibility.


Ben Vost gives STFax a hearty welcome back to the
pages of AF.

There are no wacky answerphone messages on offer
so you`ll probably find yourself singing that old
De La Soul number as a greeting.


Simon Goodwin dispenses balm to hapless AF readers -


Every time I use the Amiga Format C, I have to open up
my Amiga and put in the ROM chips. Why is it, when
you put it on boot options screen on the Workbench 3.0
version and 3.0 ROM chips, that you see a device called
PC0: Priority 3 ADOS Card-disk-0, yet when I put
Workbench 3.1 & 3.1 ROM chips in there is no such device?

The lack of CC0 in your Kick-start 3.1 is weird, and
suggests you might have the wrong ROM chips. 32-bit
Amigas need a pair of ROMs, contributing 16 bits each.
You can check the ROM version by pressing three
adjacent keys: Right Amiga, Shift and Slash - on
Workbench or selecting the Workbench/About menu.


I have an A1200 recently upgraded with a 260 MB hard
disk and 8 MB memory and a 24 x CD-ROM. Taking AFs
advice to use a virus checker, I attempted to install
Virus Checker II on my hard drive. I followed the
instructions and tried to install on HD1. I got the
message "unpacking" on the screen and the floppy drive
light came on and stayed on. I could detect no sound
or movement from the drive and, thinking it had stuck
I did a soft reboot and removed the floppy when the
light went out.

When the computer came back on I found HD1 and the
Work drawer were no longer useable. The icon HD1:NDOS
was displayed. Any attempt to use it brings up the
message HD1:NDOS was displayed....

Run DISKSALV 2 from any AFCD System/Tools/disk_tools
drawer to bring back your WORK: partition on the HD1:
which was clobbered when you reset the system in the
middle of a write ....
Sys:Tools/Commodities/Exchange lets you quit well-behaved
WBstartup programs if your determined to shut down


Where can I find information about the DosTypes field
in DosDrivers:

The DosType is a four character identifier which uniquely
identifies the format. Its written in hex as some of the
characters can`t be typed. The Ox prefix indicates base
16 or hexadecimal, and 44 is the ANSI code for "D", 4F
is the code for "O" and you might not be too surprised
to find that "53" is the code for "S"

CREATIVE: The complete beginners guide to Workbench -

WHAT IS WORKBENCH: Workbench is commonly used as a name
for the whole of the Amiga`s operating system, but it
is really just one component of it. In actual fact,
Workbench is just a program that can be run on your
Amiga the same as any other.

Workbench is an example of what is known as a GUI
( pronounced goo-ey ); it was once known as a WIMP
but that doesn`t sound half as good.


A full guide to Window Title, Screen Title, Window Drag
Bar, Screen Drag Bar, Zoom Gadget, Window Depth Gadget,
Screen Depth Gadget, Scroll Gadget.


Workbench divides icons into four main classes -
Volumes, Drawers, Projects, Tools.


Quiet at the back ! Neil Bothwick is going to explain
all about the language of the web. NEW TUTORIAL.

Javascript is contained within the HTML of a page and
executed by the browser so you can use it even if your
ISP doesn`t have a CGI facility.


Adding a GUI to your ARexx scripts? Nothing could be
easier according to Nick Veitch.

Dopus not only launches scripts but thanks to its
flexible interface, allows you to pass perimeters
to them to use them to process selected files.


Richard Drummond draws up a plan and then plunges
into the murky waters of code writing.

It is important to piece together modules in a
methodical fashion rather than throwing the whole
lot together and executing the result.


Simon Goodwin explains Amiga Blitter hardware.

Unlike Atari`s first effort, and many graphics card
chips, the memory at the same time as other chips.


Dave Cusack is our undercover reporter in the world of
web news.

Usenet has a reputation for being the refuge of some
of the Internet`s most shady characters but you don`t
have to come into contact with them.


YAMTASTIC - I have used YAM since the first release
and fin it excellent. marcel Beck has spent over three
years of his time constantly improving this great
Amiga mailer and what does it cost ? Absolutely nothing.
He hasn`t asked for a penny.

Today I have slipped a crispy 10 in an envelope
addressed to: Marcel Beck HammerStrabe 4, 4414
Fullinsdorf, Switzerland.

AFCD 46:

Richard Drummond illustrates the features of PerfectPaint
checks out iBrowse 2.1 and offers an exclusive look at
three Crystal demos.

PerfectPaint packs all the familiar drawing tools you
would expect plus animation facilities, multi-level
undo colour effects, distortions and more.


Errol Madoo offers you ways to stay organised, the
return of the virus killer, a guide to the World
Cup and a program to please those Amiga users with


SnoopDos is a "must have" utility that allows you to
monitor the system operations that are carried out by
programs on your Amiga.

Virus Checker: Almost endless list of features.
DiskOrg: A little database program.
Winback: Restores back-up files.


Paul Compton ventures `oop north` where
they have women and everything.


We put the screws on Neil Bothwick this issue and
get him to answer our probing questions.

When did you first use an Amiga ?

1987. It was an A500 with Kickstart 1.2, although
the Workbench 1.3 came out shortly after. It was
soon upgraded to the dizzy heights of an extra
floppy drive and 1 MB of RAM


AFB is a great place to be if you want to keep
up with the latest Amiga events, or if you want
to chat to users from all around the world.


That`s was that. Talk about saving the best
till last. That issue was without doubt the
best I have read... so full of Amuga stuff.

AMIGA FORMAT Issue 130 for December 1999
was brought to you by -

Editor - Ben Vost
Production Editor - Clare Hatfield
Art Editor - Colin Nightingale
Staff Writer - Richard Drummond
Contributors - Simon Goowdin, Dave Cusick
Tony Horgan, Errol Madoo, Nick Veitch,
Paul Cavanagh, Paul Compton, Neil Bothwick
CDCompilers - EMComputergraphic

100 pages - 5.99 CD Version
19 pages of adverts.

Produced and published by Future Publishing.

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Last updated 07/10/06