Apple II+ flaky on loading

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Joined: Nov 24 2013
Posts: 202

Hey guys,

I have a very late II+ (sn 58xxxx). For some time I had been under the impression certain games, etc., would not work on it at all due to its age or limitations. However, when I got my Rev 02 Apple II, I discovered this software worked on it. So I figured a II+ ought to be more capable than a Rev 02 and ought to run the same software.

I ran a RAM diagnostic. I remember hitting similar weird issues with my 02 and after reseating RAMs got everything working. Anyway, the diag says no problems on the motherboard and no problems on the language card. However, after starting to swap RAMs on the card I found I could get further into the loading process than before. Never all the way but.. further. Ive swapped all of them with known goods but am still getting stuck.

Are there other places to look? Motherboard RAM? Is there a more efficient way to test these other than 1 by 1?

I notice on the language card there are three leds.. the two closest to the back of the case are solid red.. the one closest to the keyboard does not light. If thst means anything..

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Offline
Joined: Aug 14 2014
Posts: 18
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

corrected in following post

Offline
Joined: Aug 14 2014
Posts: 18
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

My knowledge of troubleshooting is no better than your own... hopefully others will speak to the best methodology to use. A few comments/suggestions while waiting for those contributions

1. Suspect you have a Microsoft Language card as I do not recall LEDs on the original Apple version
If so the LED explanation is located around page 26 in the attached http://apple2online.com/web_documents/microsoft_ramcard_-_manual.pdf
2. Page 16 in the same manual talks about issues with programs created using the older version of Basic designed for the 13 sector disks in use prior to DOS 3.3. This could be why you have difficulty with some programs.
3. You only mention RAM. The problem could also be with a ROM chip. Suggest you try reseating those if you have not done so already.

Offline
Joined: Dec 4 2015
Posts: 44
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

Just got my Apple II+ running so run this sequence:
Boot the DOS 3.3 System Master. During boot, the rear light comes on and screen says "LOADING INTEGER BASIC INTO MEMORY" then ] prompt with only rear light still on.
]INT
> (now only center light is on)
>CALL -151
*C083
*C083
now middle and rear lights are on. You are now in the monitor on the language card ram
*D000.FFFF
all bytes dumping should be valid hex code, not gaps of 00 or FF's or repeats of same values.

ok so far?

Larry G

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Joined: Nov 24 2013
Posts: 202
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

Thanks guys. I decided to go for broke, and replaced ALL the 4116s with some 8116 chips I had lying around (I have tons of vintage ICs). Immediately the games began booting properly. So I think now would be an opportune time to reverse my hunt procedure, and start subbing in 4116s/8116s one at a time until it doesn't boot.. when it doesn't, chuck that chip and carry on. Then I'll have a box of 'known good'?

I'm assuming of course 8116 and 4116 are fully interchangeable. I've seen both on my Apple II motherboards, and swapping 8116s onto this language card obviously improved rather than degraded performance. It's nice to have this II+ working properly for the first time ever. Now I'll go play with my Bell and Howell unit that was doing something similar.

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Joined: Dec 4 2015
Posts: 44
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

Good to hear. Which diagnostics said the card was ok? If you sub memory back in until you get the loading problem, it would be nice to know which diags could detect the bad ram.
The II+ ones in here: ftp://ftp.apple.asimov.net/pub/apple_II/images/disk_utils/diagnostics/
to try would be Apple Cillin and Apple II Plus Dealer Diagnostics (I see two of them).

Larry G

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Joined: Nov 24 2013
Posts: 202
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

The diags I used were 'Apple II Dealer Diagnostics'. I have had them pick up problems on mainboard RAMs once in a while but no luck with the language cards. Typically too if some of the mainboard RAMs are bad, the Diag won't even boot anyway. I'm just happy my II+ can be useful for something. I really like using my B&H the best, although it's missing its 0 key.

amauget's picture
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Joined: Jan 3 2011
Posts: 244
Re: Apple II+ flaky on loading

falter,

You can also use the Confidence Test Disk.
It uses less RAM and gaves me good results when troubleshooting RAM issues.

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Antony
Apple II forever