[sebhc] Re: H8 data record format

Steven Parker sp11 at hotmail.com
Thu May 6 19:11:28 CDT 2004

Scott asks:
>... I think what I am am most interested in at this point is
>if/how the tape format is different from the ABS format used for
>executables within HDOS.

The .ABS format is simpler and has no framing (SYN, CRC, etc).  It does have 
entry and load addresses so it could potentially be used to store 
single-block tape files (PAM-8 dumps are all single-block).  But remember if 
you store it this way and load it under HDOS, the software and HDOS could 
compete for I/O and interrupts.  That's what the TMI format and loader was 
designed to handle (HUG product number 885-1061 .. anyone got that?).  
Here's the .ABS format:

        bytes   contents

          1     file type prefix (0xFF)
          1     file type (0x00)
          2     load address
          2     byte count  *
          2     entry point
         (*)    data bytes

* = I would expect the count to be just data, but I've seen it mentioned in 
listings as "length of entire record" - a quick check of an existing .ABS 
file should settle it, but I don't have my gear set up yet.

Speaking of setting up old gear, I plugged in one of my H-8's yesterday and 
got a pop, spark, and puff of smoke from the CPU.  I think it's one of the 
little blue capactors - there's a slight discoloration near one now (but 
oddly the part itself has no visible damage).

Anyone have experience reviving old gear?  Mine's been boxed for over a 
decade.  Any precautions I should take before I try to power up another 


- Steven

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