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Sent: Thu Dec 21 07:13:43 2017
is it possible to compile a mac build that has the control menu disabled?
There is an option in the source code, “UseControlKeys”, that can be set 0 to prevent intercepting the control key. But there is no way provided to change this option in the build sytem or the Variations Service. It is a bit dangerous to turn this off, if the emulated Mac crashes there may be no way to quit Mini vMac. But if there is demand, perhaps I could make this option available in a future version.
Why would you want it? Is it just that you want to be able to use the control key in the emulated Macintosh? In that case it might be better to have an option to use a different key to control Mini vMac other than the control key.
Sent: Wed Dec 13 14:15:07 2017
Can you help me get this working? I really don't know how to use it on my android mini vmac app. Appreciate the help.
[... a URL ...]
I’m not involved in the Android port of Mini vMac, and don’t know much about, and in fact have never used it, which is why there is no documentation about it on this website.
Perhaps you could first try getting it working in Mini vMac on OS X, Windows, or Linux. You could start with the Mini vMac the Getting Started page.
Sent: Tue Dec 12 23:27:44 2017
The emulator doesn't work.
It is just a black screen.
I generally do want to encourage people to try out the Variations Service. But I should make it clearer that you should try a standard variation first. The documentation for getting started with Mini vMac is for a standard variation.
In this case, you requested a variation with a non standard ROM size, which won't work unless you create such a ROM, which is certainly not something for beginners.
Besides the black screen, an error message should have been displayed, at least until the 'C' key was pressed.
Sent: Sun Dec 10 16:45:42 2017
Thanks so much for providing all of this amazing information and resources. I have a macbook air and I followed the instructions and then tried launching Mini vMac and the grey screen came up with that old "ping!" sound, but no questions mark thing. Even when I dragged the disk image into the grey window, nothing happened. Am I missing a step? Thanks so much. [... email address ...]
To hear the startup sound, most of the emulator needs to be working. One possibility is that only the video output isn’t working. Another possibility is that the emulator, or just the emulated computer, hung shortly after startup. Since you didn’t mention a problem quitting, I would guess the emulator is still running.
If you are using the 64 bit version of Mini vMac for OS X, you could try using the 32 bit version (or vice versa). These two versions happen to use entirely different code for talking to the operating system (Cocoa vs Carbon). If one works and one doesn’t, that would narrow down where the problem is.
Sent: Tue Dec 5 19:17:13 2017
is it possible to compile vmac to run on a PPC with floppy support under OS 8.6 or 9?
[... email address ...]
It is possible to compile Mini vMac for Mac OS 8.6 and Mac OS 9. But there is no code in Mini vMac for using floppy hardware directly.
Instead, you can make an image of a floppy disk with the application “Disk Copy”, and use the image in any version of Mini vMac. You can also write an image back to a floppy disk with Disk Copy.
Sent: Thu Nov 30 22:41:54 2017
How do you add more memory to a emulated Macintosh.
You can change the amount of memory with the “-mem” compile time option. But it already generally defaults to the maximum possible for each model.
Sent: Mon Nov 27 20:36:16 2017
I'm running a custom variation of a mac ii and error 0F04 appeared after the machine had been running idle for a while - which on this Mac means that After Dark has been running for a few minutes. MinivMac is in b/w (that's its default screen depth), screen size 640*400 (doubled, full screen), running System 7.1.2, Hypercard 2.1, and AfterDark Star Trek, module "Brain Cells". "About MiniVMac has mvm20107-3.5.8-wx86. Once I press "C" for Continue, all is good. Hope this helps! Kind regards, Karl
Thanks for the report. Code 0F04 indicates the sound buffer on the ASC (Apple Sound Chip) is full, with stereo sound. This could either indicate a bug in Mini vMac, or in the software running in Mini vMac (or not even a bug, just harmless slopiness). The abnormal situation report for mono sound buffer full is already disabled, because it is reached in the game Tetris.
Since everything seems to work fine after the abormal situation report, I might just disable the report in the next version. Also, I might add compile time option to disable all abnormal situations, so there is an easier fix for an unwanted report than to wait for the next version of Mini vMac.
Sent: Sat Nov 25 03:34:37 2017
At first I didn't get the point of the Variations Service if it was anywhere near as simple to build as most open source applications are, which it would seem to be if so many settings are compile options. Now I get the point and I'm slightly flummoxed.
It seems that it's actually impossible to compile Mini vMac as 64-bit Cocoa using Xcode because of mac68k alignment pragma being disabled in Apple's tools? Not only that, but even on the 32-bit build there's some linking issue involving empty symbol tables which seems to have been a problem since the release of Sierra over a year ago now. (again, due to a change in Apple's version of dyld, I admit.) I realize you're not an early adopter, but surely you'd be on Sierra by now? (Apologies if your Mac doesn't support anything past El Capitan.)
And then I noticed that you personally use an automated system which cross compiles from a standard GNU toolchain seemingly? The Variations System seems to sidestep a far more than trivial effort, even for the reasonably technically inclined. I feel slightly conned into giving you a donation to even just configure the program the way I'd like. I'm still sorting through how I feel about that. It's not like I stopped at the first stumbling block, either, I had to find and add back in the 10.4u SDK, then delete a "floats.h" in said SDK that was throwing other errors but was only there for compatibility reasons now 10 years obsolete. None of these are even really to do with your code, that I've noticed, it seems if I had a machine running Tiger or even El Capitan next to me I'd be up and running just fine. :/
To the point: are you planning on making Mini vMac buildable using a recent Xcode again? I know there's a ton of competing concerns there, this isn't a trivial amount of work for you either. (Potentially even involving a new Mac, of course.) If you plan on doing so, though, I'd be happy to throw a donation your way the next time I balance my own checkbook.
Thank you very much for your work on the Project, I hope this didn't come across too bitter.
Sent: Sat Nov 25 03:34:37 2017
An addendum to the last comment about building in recent Xcode: Could you potentially detail your personal build workflow? If that's the official way to build it maybe that's just what I should do as well.
Thank you for the feedback. It does help to illustrate the point of the Variations Service.
First, I suspect part of your problem is that you are not using the “-ev” option to specify a version of Xcode. Without that it defaults to Xcode 2.4.1, which is ancient. I should change that default. The last version supported Apple Xcode 8.2.1, with “-ev 8210”. This was current when Mini vMac 3.5.x was being developed at the beginning of the year. Xcode has a faster development cycle. But a Mini vMac project generated for Xcode 8.2.1 will probably work much better with current Xcode than one for Xcode 2.4.1.
Whenever Mini vMac is compiled with a compiler or compiler version it hasn’t been compiled with before, there is a good chance that it will work fine, but there is also a good chance it won’t. Further, if someone tries to compile Mini vMac for the first time, there is a good chance they will run in to problems, from not understanding their development tools, or not reading the documentation, or that the documentation isn’t clear enough. In any of these situations people might contact me. And if more than a handful of people ask me for help in compiling, it is completely impossible. So I’m tending towards strongly discouraging people from trying to compile Mini vMac from source unless they are experienced programmer familiar with their compiler, who wants to work with the source code, and not someone who is just trying to compile a version of Mini vMac.
This is not just because of the current funding model. When the variation service was free and not so automated, I still prefered people use it rather than trying to compile. Because it only took a few extra seconds for me to compile an additional variation, while it takes a least 15 minutes to answer a question about compiling, and often much more.
Sorry, I have no plans to publish, and especially not to support, the gcc cross compilers I have built. For the reasons above, plus bandwidth costs for my server (the complete set with supporting files is large). If anyone really wants to, they can build their own with (currently) “gcc-4.7.4, gmp-4.3.2, mpfr-2.4.2, mpc-0.8.1, and mingw-w64-v4.0.6”.
I expect as the Mini vMac 3.6 branch is developed, I will add support for the current Xcode and Visual Studio compilers. Which again will likely be obsolete while Mini vMac 3.6 is still current.
It is true that some open source projects may be easier to compile. But that would tend to be large projects with many people working on them. If you count “most” in terms of each open source project, rather than each instance of open source being used, then the typical open source project was maintained by one person who burned out because the costs grew as it became more popular and resources didn’t, and it is now a dead project.
Sent: Tue Nov 21 18:29:10 2017
You've worked on this a lot. Just wanted to ask if you could please add support for other mac models.
The next step is to finish the Macintosh II emulation (the simpler models are already implemented). However, Macintosh II emulation has been in development for about a decade. It is basically a matter of getting what you pay for. So I lately I have been trying to create something that people can pay for, and that is worth paying for, while still remaining open source, and not compromising the goals of the Gryphel Project to preserve and promote old Macintosh software. This something is the Variations Service.
Sent: Wed Nov 15 13:30:51 2017
how can i get other vmac variations?
One way is with the Variations Service.
Sent: Wed Nov 15 05:09:27 2017
How do you save a game's progress?
I would guess you are asking if Mini vMac can save the state of the emulated Macintosh and resume later. No, Mini vMac does not have this feature.
Sent: Thu Nov 9 00:01:07 2017
I notice that you have SE (both original and FDHD version) and II support, with support for 68000 and 68020 CPUs - Is support for 68030 CPUs planned and thus opening a route for SE30 and IIx (et al) support in the future ?
I also haven't seen any references to either 68881 or 68882 FPU emulation which I believe many of the middle age vintage Macs included (the SE30 and the II)
Thanks by the way for an excellent application,
The incomplete Macintosh II emulation of Mini vMac does have partial emulation of the 68881 FPU. The main way the Macintosh II emulation is incomplete is the FPU emulation.
Emulation of the 68030 would be in the scope of Mini vMac. But schedule ...
With the Variations Service, I’m working on a funding model to allow faster development of Mini vMac.
Sent: Tue Nov 7 02:40:13 2017
G'day there, Paul,
This is just a brief note to echo the person who reported a 2MB "128" Mac.
A mob on the north shore of Sydney were making the boards, which sold for AU$660 back in 1986, IIRC. This when a Mac 128 in Oz cost $3,000. Just think: that board increased the RAM installed by SEVENTEEN times. To have the equivalent RAM now in my 16GB MBP would require it to be able to use 279.6G of RAM!
That board made it a brilliant machine, and I too ran a 1MB RAM disk (SSD) which was loaded up with the contents of three 400k floppies, System & Finder, bags of fonts, apps, whatever, and never shut down.
It was blindingly fast, indeed was as fast as the first, raw, SE/30 (which had to be slowed down so you could scroll lists, otherwise they were just a blur), and it really wasn't until the MBP mid 2011, with the i7 and 7,200 rpm HDs came out that I could *do* things again as quickly as I could do in the first little Mac.
Mind you, you only did single tasks at a time, so that helped, but I could edit 300-page books in WriteNow, larger texts went to Word 1.0, (then back into WN chapter by chapter to correct the formatting,) and I build a couple of monster superannuation spreadsheets in Excel 1. I'm still using the direct descendant of QuickDex, now iData, as well as SmartAlarms. Oh, and Excel, too.
I *must get me my ROM(s) extracted, and get into your tool!
Cheers, & thanks for this your long-term hobby that benefits history so well.
Sent: Oct 30 00:20:01 2017
I thought I might let you know about a nifty little application for building software within Mini vMac. EMPW lets you run MPW code against your working directory, from a macOS shell.
The repo contains a combination of Python scripts, a custom Mini vMac build (thanks!), and an image of System 7.5.5 and the Macintosh Programmer's Workshop. All the external requirements are installable using Homebrew.
EMPW is hosted here:
[... address ...]
I’m happy that people are using MPW. Running MPW is one of the main reasons that Mini vMac exists. (I’ve not included the link here, since of policy not to link to abandonware.)
Sent: Sat Oct 28 01:45:38 2017
Sent: Sat Oct 28 01:41:40 2017
is checking ROM Size to 128k,
allows mini vMacII use standard mini vMac ROM
[... email address ...]
No, a Macintosh II can not use the ROM from a Macintosh Plus. The hardware is much too different.
Sent: Wed Oct 25 12:37:24 2017
I greatly enjoy mini vMac as an alternative to Basilisk II, but I have a question about the fullscreen/magnify mode of mini vMac.
My MacBook Pro has a screen resolution of 1440x900 natively. With my previous MacBook (1280x800), I was able to select the half resolution "custom variation" of mini vMac (640x400) and then use the magnify option in fullscreen, so that the whole screen would be filled out by the emulator. But when I tried 720x450 as a custom variation for my MacBook Pro, I received an error. Something to do with 32?
So my question is: which screen resolution of the custom variation service should I choose to be able to have the fullscreen window filled out properly for my MacBook Pro? I tried the standard 640x480, but then the screen scrolls up or down when the mouse reaches the top or bottom of the display.
Thanks in advance for your reply,
The emulated screen width needs to be a multiple of 32. The next lowest multiple is 704. So pick “704 x 450” from the pop up menu.
Perhaps I should make the error message in this case suggest the next lowest multiple of 32. (update - this is now done.)
Sent: Fri Oct 20 03:49:21 2017
Really great program you have here, except every time I try to open a program on the main disk (not the Startup or Additions disks), it says it's "busy or missing." Could the Apple images be corrupted?
Mini vMac has no such error message. Searching on Google turns up someone trying to double click a control panel in System 6. So what you are trying to open probably aren't programs.
You could try out the Recipes for Mini vMac, as a way to get started with early Macintosh software.
Sent: Sun Oct 15 03:42:44 2017
Hi Paul, a follow-up on my prior message about control key and Prince of Persia 2,
Backslash is my favorite of the keys you mentioned as possible alternatives to entering control mode. But another thought - what if for Mac II emulation (either by default for MacII emu or as another compile switch), only right Ctrl activates control mode, while left Ctrl sends ctrl?
One issue may be that distinguishing the left control key fom the right might not be possible on all operating systems. But the configuration interface could be designed to deal with this.
Sent: Fri Oct 13 21:38:54 2017
I'm trying to play Prince of Persia 2 with the Mac II build, and it runs great, except for one thing. The game uses the "control" key for swordfighting, and Mini vMac intercepts Ctrl for control mode. Is there a workaround? Using Ctrl+K works, but it's not very convenient to play this way. There must be many other games reliant on the control key too.
Thanks for your work!
The Mini vMac user interface was designed for emulation of the Macintosh Plus, which doesn’t have a Control key. For Macintosh II emulation, perhaps a compile time option should be added to use a different key for controling the emulator. Some choices might be the Escape key, Backquote, or Backslash. What would work with Prince of Persia 2?
Sent: Fri Oct 13 11:45:27 2017
I have downloaded the 8802 version of mini vmac which works well for my needs but unfortunately it has a demo image moving around. How could I obtain a version of this without the moving image. I have looked on your website but can't determine how to achieve this even by paying a fee
Thank you for your interest in sponsoring a variation. The directions for sponsoring were at the bottom of the Variations Service Directions page. I have now tried instead splitting these directions off to a separate Directions for Sponsoring a Variation page.
Then I put a link to this new page on the Latest Custom Variations page. If I might ask, where else did you look, so that I could consider putting links there?
Sent: Wed Oct 4 20:14:11 2017
Is it possible to have 16, 32 and 68MB memory options in the 3.5+ variations service for macii builds?
Since we're not dealing with mode32 and 32-bit clean memory, I know we can't go as high as 128MB, but it seems to me we should be able to handle the configurations that the original was capable of with the FDHD upgrade kit.
What do you think?
Without 32-bit clean memory, 8MB is the maximum RAM. 24 bits of address lines gives 16MB of address space, and half that space is used for other things besides RAM for the Macintosh II.
It would in fact be possible in the current Mini vMac to emulate a Macintosh II with more than 8MB of RAM, but Macintosh System software would not work on it. It might potentially be useful if you write your own operating system that runs in 32 bit mode.
Sent: Fri Sep 29 11:09:56 2017
Hi! I just translated STRCONS.h to Czech. As I said before with the OS 7 Disk 3 problem, you all did a great job. mini vMac is simply the best Macintosh emulator I have ever seen.
anyway, here's the translation:
========================================================== [... translation (lengthy) ...] =======================================================
(Sorry for the delay replying. I’m now back from travel.)
Thank you for this translation! I have added a Czech page to the Mini vMac website localization pages, with your translation. I’ll include it in the next Mini vMac branch 3.6, when that is started.
I put Anonymous in the copyright line, since you have not given your name. If you would give it, I’d be happy to include your name here and in the credits file.
Please let me know if you notice any mistakes. There were some glitches with international characters in my feedback page, which I attempted to correct.
Sent: Mon Sep 25 03:41:10 2017
I'm trying to use an old game disk image on Mini vMac and it says "Please unlock the disk image "Enchanted Scepters" (my game) and try again. The desktop file couldn't be created." If this is a file and not a floppy disk, how do I unlock it to use it? Any help at all is very appreciated!
[... email address ...]
This may be a Disk Copy 4.2 image. In that case, you can use CnvtDC42 to convert it into an image that Mini vMac can write to.
Sent: Tue Sep 19 22:35:13 2017
A very good work!!!
I’ve translated STRCONS.h to català language, I hope you can include it in future versions.
Thank you very much for this great emulator!
[... email address ...]
========================================================== [... translation (lengthy) ...] =======================================================
(Sorry for the delay replying, due to travel.)
Thank you for the translation! I have added a Catalan page to the Mini vMac website localization pages, with your translation (slightly edited). I’ll include it in the next Mini vMac branch 3.6, when that is started (3.5 was recently released).
There are a few issues I have questions about. The translation I received was double spaced instead of single spaced, which I guess is just a glitch of pasting on my feedback page. But there also seemed to be extra spurious tabs and spaces, which may also be such a glitch. Hopefully meaningful characters weren’t turned into spaces and lost?
I made a comment say "STRing CONSTants (for Catalan)" instead of Català, because in this context the english name of the language has been used. And I have the impression that Catalan is the english name for Català?
In one place (for kStrNewFullScreen) I changed “es´à” to “està”. I suspected this was a typo? This was the only place the ‘´’ character appeared. Similar translations nearby used “està”. Googling “es´à” turns up nothing.
Other than that, there is only one new character that needs to be supported by Mini vMac, ‘·’, as in “cancel·lada”.
I changed the copyright line to 2017, and replaced Chir with ArduinoXino. Or are the translations themselves, and not just the structure of the file, significantly based on the Spanish translation, so that he should remain in the copyright line, and also mentioned in the credit comments. (Perhaps, something like “These strings were translated by ArduinoXino, making some use of the previous Spanish translation by Chir.”) (My name remains in the copyright line for the overall structure of the file, including the program names of the strings, and the comments.)
Sent: Tue Sep 19 09:02:40 2017
I use Stuffit for Windos:
It works Ok (not in all files)
The modern version of Stuffit Expander (now from Smith Micro Inc.) is particularly useful in getting started with Mini vMac by expanding a System 6.0.8 image from Apple (as described in the Getting Started page). After that, it is possible to use an old version of Stuffit Expander that runs in Mini vMac.
Sent: Fri Sep 15 05:11:05 2017
Hello. I would like to use the system 7 installer files. What do I need to unpack the bin file?
See the System 7.0.1 install images Recipe for step by step instructions.
Sent: Tue Sep 5 06:09:09 2017
In regards to the "Abnormal Situation" (OAO4) error I reported earlier, the error is generated immediately upon booting into Mac OS 7.5.5. There are several PowerBook related items in the Control Panels which has me wondering if perhaps I'm using a version of 7.5.5 that isn't fully compatible with a Mac II?
reply should go here
Sent: Sat Sep 2 05:22:19 2017
I received an "Abnormal Situation" (OAO4) error with a v3.5.8 build that did not occur using the same disk image with a v3.4.1 build. I'm reporting this because I do not know whether the error is a result of something I've done incorrectly or if there is a bug in the current version of Mini vMac.
Code 0A04 indicates that Mini vMac’s video driver was passed a control code it doesn’t know about. Previous versions of Mini vMac just ignored such control codes.
If you can tell me what you are doing that generates this warning then I can make Mini vMac deal with it properly. (Which is why it is giving such warnings now, so such issues can be dealt with.)
update - follow-up message
Sent: Thu Aug 31 11:40:02 2017
Mini vMac works great, until I try to install Mac OS 7 on it. When I get to disk 3, it spits out the my dsk file (untitled) and prompts me to insert it. When I mount that back in, it spits out the disk 3, works for a while and then asks to instert the disk "untitled". It would help if you (or possibly someone else) figured out how to mount the DSK file as a SCSI hard disk and not as a floppy. Otherwise, you (and everyone else, who helped make Mini vMac possible) did a great job.
Sent: Thu Aug 31 11:50:17 2017
Hi, I told you about the Mac OS 7 disk 3 and hard disk issue earlier today. After struggling with the installation, I noticed it worked normally again. It appears that the issue only happens for some data on the disks downloaded from winworldpc.com. I'm happy that I don't have to do the constant disk switching for every disk. Also, I wrote Mac OS 7, but OS 7.0.1 was already installed by me. I used disk images I found on YouTube. WhatI meant to say was Mac OS 7.5. It might be an issue with the disks.
For many installer programs, including the one for Mac OS, what works to prevent disk swapping is to mount all the installer disks in advance. Mini vMac by default can mount 6 disk images at once. But System 7.5 has more install disks than that. You can increase the number of disk images in Mini vMac with the “-drives” compile time option. You don’t need to compile Mini vMac yourself, you can use the Variations Service.
Sent: Wed Aug 23 21:10:02 2017
Hi! I found software that crashes under Mini vMac, can you check if Mini vMac can be patched to make it work? The disk image is non bootable, so you have to boot System 4.1 or higher with a ROM that is at least 128K or larger. Here's the crashing software floppy image: [... link to Super 3D 2.0 by Silicon Beach Software on a site with Macintosh abandonware ...]
Do you have any reason for believing this should work on a Macintosh Plus? It doesn’t seem the sort of software that is likely to.
Or are you talking about the Macintosh II emulation of Mini vMac? It is incomplete, many things work well enough, many things don’t. It is suitable for games when it works. It should not be relied on for accurate results for other purposes.
Sent: Tue Aug 22 03:02:54 2017
Thanks for writing FDisam app. I'm reading Basilisk II source code. I got stuck in their messy ROM patch code. So I use FDisam tool to read original ROM in human renderable way. After importing the PEFORMA from file and rename it into bin, I don't think it disassemble correctly. All lines are treated as DC.L, define constant.
Is it because the endianness issue in the way extracted ROM file or the ROM is encrypted?
Sent: Fri Aug 25 01:38:54 2017
Sorry, I didn't see you have another utilities FindCode that tag code segment in ROM.
I used IDA Pro to disassemble ROM. It requires to manually tag code segment as well. Given 1MB size of Performa ROM, I guess that will be some work.
As a programmer, I'm lazy. I want to know:
1. Did anyone try to tag Performa ROM with MD5 hash af343f3f1362bf29cefd630687efaa25?
2. Are there any heuristic way/tool to tag code segment automatically? So assuming that the tagging program run as M68K instruction executor, we provide a start address and all initialized registers. By running ROM, we tag the code at the same time. When hitting logical branch (either true or false), we fork two different execution path from the fork...
I will appreciate if you can give me some advice since you have done this with lots of experiences.
Yes, FDisasm won’t do anything very interesting without formatting information. Starting with a map of where the code is.
Creating high quality formatting information is very non trivial.
There are some quick and dirty approaches. Starting with just marking the entire ROM as code. If treating data as code is messing up the disassembly of following instructions that you’re interesting it, then you can manually mark that data in the map.
Sent: Mon Aug 21 21:52:30 2017
big thanks for your work on MiniVMac_II and the build system!
Could you please enable some more RAM for the Mac_II flavour - say 16MB?
It is possible to compile a version Mini vMac Macintosh II emulation with more RAM, but it doesn’t work. A Macintosh II doesn’t have a “32 bit clean” ROM and so will not normally support more than 8M of memory. According to the Macintosh II article on Wikipedia, the software “MODE32” will allow a Macintosh II to use more memory, but only if the optional PMMU is installed, which Mini vMac does not emulate yet.
For earlier mail, see the mail index.