Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

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Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

This was my wife's uncle's (Sam) computer, he was definitely a geek in his days. When he died, I bought the machine from his widow for $25. It still booted into System 6.0.1 no problem, but then I messed it up somehow. For months it would only take me to the command prompt right after the boot screen. Today, I tried it again and it booted to the GUI! I looked around the files a bit, played some solitaire, got into Arkanoid, but couldn't get out of the game. Yeah, super noob here. I was raised on DOS/Win 3.1, this is practically Greek to me.

I rebooted, and then I was getting "UNABLE TO LOAD PRODOS" and the intermittent readout of a bunch of hex-looking data (which of course I can't get to show up now that I'm writing this).

I popped the case, inspected the cards (slot 1: empty, slot 2: Computer Eyes, slot 3: Apple II Video Overlay, slot 4: Transwarp, slot 5: empty, slot 6: empty, slot 7: RAM Fast / SCSI 256K Rev C that's hooked to a hard drive, slot 8: GS-RAM Plus), and now I'm looking at the RamFAST configuration utility. Trying to muddle through that isn't getting me anywhere, and rebooting takes me right back to the config screen.

I'm so deep in the woods, I'm totally lost. Please help. I'd like to keep all the data on Sam's drive, but I did order a boot disk set just in case. How can I get back into System 6.0.1 and prevent this from happening again?

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Small update: managed to get out of the config loop (it wouldn't save any of my changes and the list it presented seemed right, for all I know) by pulling the card, wiping the contacts, and rebooting. So now I'm back to "UNABLE TO LOAD PRODOS" if you can call that progress.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot


I'm so deep in the woods, I'm totally lost. Please help.

It's going to be ok,

you've come to a good place to find your way...

Even among new computers, the first thing you look at is the Power Supply.

Having a bad one will give you intermittent errors and/or problems.

Aside from that, you use the process of elimination (which is a tool used by many people to fix many things, not just your computer).

What I mean by this is you take all the cards out of the computer and try again to see a change in the computer's behavior.

Try to use the built in self-test, hold down the open-apple and option buttons simultaneously as you turn the computer on.

Note any errors.

If they disappear, then insert each card one by one and try to recreate the errors.

This information hopefully will start you off.

If you get useful results, you'll find people here with better experience with this than I do.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

After numerous reboots to try and get a fluke good boot, I got the hex-ish code back. It reads as follows:

00/618C: 00 00 BRK 00
A=FF27 X=0070 Y=0084 S=01FA D=0000 P=31
B=00 K=00 M=0C Q=88 L=1 m=1 x=1 e=1
*(blinking cursor)

____________________________

I'm going to leave it here tonight, just in case there's something I can enter here that you guys advise.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot


Try to use the built in self-test, hold down the open-apple and option buttons simultaneously as you turn the computer on.

Note any errors.

If they disappear, then insert each card one by one and try to recreate the errors.

Thanks! I'll do this tomorrow if my weird output I listed above doesn't pan out.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Be sure to take those cards out and consider if your PSU might be the cause.

I recommend that you use a true RMS (true root mean square) digital multimeter to check the voltages of the power supply under load (measuring the voltages when the computer is running).

You should be reading four different voltages: +5 and -5v, +12 and -12v.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Not sure if my meter is TRMS, I'll have to check that in the morning. My PSU pinout is black-black-empty-red-yellow-brown-blue, so I'm guessing (without poking it yet) that blue and brown are the 12's?

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

The black wires will always be negative.

Just use the positive lead to test each of the other voltages (or wires).

The negative voltages should show up on your meter with a minus sign --> - <-- along with the voltage reading.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

I recommend that you use a true RMS (true root mean square) digital multimeter to check the voltages ...


Not sure why you would make this recommendation. Other than the fact that a TRMS meter would probably be of higher overall quality and accuracy, there would be no advantage here since RMS is used for AC measurements and we are talking about DC volts here.

Otherwise, you're correct that it's always good to start with a check of the power supply.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Hello parkerbrown,
welcome to the board.....
besides checking the voltages at the Supply.....
the 2 black cables are Ground ( 0 Volt ) so that is neither positiv nor negativ....
it seems that the powersupply is still working but another common problem
nowadays is the battery beneath the powersupply on the mainboard... ( 3,6 Volt )

while powerswitch is toggled to on position press "Option" key to get to the
option panel and check settings....

if the options of booting have changed due to empty battery then the IIGS
does not try to start anymore from the harddisk..... searching for a disk
in a disk drive and then surrenders with the mentiond "missing System".....

When correcting the boot slot to the slot of the RAMfast SCSI card it might solve your problem....
If the computer looses its settings after power off - its sure indicator that the battery must become replaced !

sincerely
speedyG

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

I recommend that you use a true RMS (true root mean square) digital multimeter to check the voltages ...


Not sure why you would make this recommendation. Other than the fact that a TRMS meter would probably be of higher overall quality and accuracy, there would be no advantage here since RMS is used for AC measurements and we are talking about DC volts here.

Otherwise, you're correct that it's always good to start with a check of the power supply.

The reason for this suggestion is that the only other way to measure a sine wave is peak to peak.

Depending on the application, the difference can be quite surprising.

Wattage is equal to voltage multiplied by amperage if I remember correctly.

And wattage is measured in only two ways - RMS and P to P.

AC measurements?

Well, power supplies contain a transformer which does not change an AC sine wave to DC.

It remains as AC.

To do this, there may be a full bridge rectifier or a dedicated device which does the whole thing internally although the power in DC volts is very high.

As far as I know, it is ALWAYS recommended to use a good True RMS multimeter no matter what.

What's this person going to do when AC has to be measured?

But hey, if you really think I am still wrong, then tell me why!

There may be schools of thought which I am not aware of!

I am always interested in other schools of thought.

Even though I did not finish the course, my teacher was an insane 75 year old man with a loud voice and a totally strange character.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Hello insanitor and jeffmazur,

nice discussion.... maybe worth own thread: Basics about Measurements and Measurement Techniques...

but may we please first target to solve
the problems of parkerbrown ?

just my 5 cents...

sincerely
speedyG

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Ok, Speedy.

But we're still waiting for the results of the tests.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Well reading the initial posting we can assume the voltages to be O.K.
But if Battery is lost / dead then we have a problem with the Options...
remember there is a accelerator card present in slot 4 and as
booting device a SCSI contoller in slot 7....
so the first question is:
is slot 4 set to "own card" or not
and is slot 7 set to "own card" or not....

then also keep in mind:
SCSI Harddrives require some delay time to spin up to normal speed....
Without correct Options set and without correct setting of the Accelerator
System will try to boot from SCSI drive that is not ready because it did not
get it's requested time for spinning up and resulting to the mistake not loading proDOS.

So first question is:
Is the battery O.K. or not or does the system loose settings when power off happens ?

Then second question is: are the settings of the accelerator card O.K. ?
Does it keep it's settimgs ?

And then finnaly third we may ask if the harddisk got damaged by "Bad Sector" resulting to
faulty Prodos image on harddisk....

From Voltages only the +12 Volt is realy important to be approved due to the fact that this
system has quite "heavy load" and the fact that SCSI drives pull quite a bunch of power....

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Ok, Speedy.

But we're still waiting for the results of the tests.


Sorry speedyG, but while we wait for the OP to reply I see no harm in responding to insanitor's questions. It might be useful to others reading this thread:

>> Wattage is equal to voltage multiplied by amperage if I remember correctly
Yes that is true; but it is also proportional to voltage squared which is why we have RMS in the first place.

>> And wattage is measured in only two ways - RMS and P to P.
Again, this DOES NOT apply to DC signals. AC waveforms do have RMS and P-P (or just peak after rectification) but also AVERAGE values. Most multimeters measure the average of an AC signal, but the meter scale (or display) is usually set to show the RMS value for ideal sine waves. Other waveforms will show significant deviation from their RMS value.

>> Well, power supplies contain a transformer which does not change an AC sine wave to DC.
True for linear supplies. But almost all computer PSU's are switching supplies which DO immediately change the incoming AC to DC. Nevertheless, I don't think they were planning to open up the PSU to do any troubleshooting inside.

>> What's this person going to do when AC has to be measured?
Again, not debating the usefulness of a TRMS meter, but in most cases (like this) it is not necessary. Measuring DC volts at the output of a PSU would not be any different on an average or rms meter.

>> But hey, if you really think I am still wrong, then tell me why!
>> There may be schools of thought which I am not aware of!
>> I am always interested in other schools of thought.

Hope this helps. There's plenty more detailed info to be had with a simple google search.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Thanks Jeffmazur.

I guess this has a large amount of scientific information to consider aside from how individual components work.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Hey guys, quick update and apology: sorry I haven't gotten back to you all yet, I've been on military duty since Friday evening. When I get home later today, I'll try some things you've advised and post the results.

Thanks for all your tips, guys!

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Real info this time!

Checked the options panel. The system time does reset itself (hypothesis below likely). I set the slots with just the Transwarp and SCSI card, set the startup to the SCSI card, and then booting gets me some similar hex-looking code to what I posted above (yes, I know it's not actually hex, but I don't know what it actually is). Which reads:

______________________________
00/615F: 00 00 BRK 00
A=FF27 X=0070 Y=0084 S=01FA D=0000 P=31
B=00 K=00 M=0C Q=88 L=1 m=1 x=1 e=1
*(blinking cursor)
______________________________

I pulled all the cards, it wouldn't go past the checkerboard without the Transwarp. Put that back in, it goes into the self test while holding the appropriate keys.

Running the self test gives me "System bad: 07000000" which a quick Google tells me means that the onboard battery is dead (of course it is, it's 30 years old!). So how on earth do I replace the dusty, little, purple canister of a battery? Is this the kind of thing I can replace with a 3 volt coin cell, or is it too picky (because the label says "3.6 volt lithium inorganic")?

Or is it something else entirely?

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

If your GS is a ROM 01 or ROM 03 then removing the battery won't give you any errors.

If it's a ROM 00 then I do not know.

After you remove the Power Supply...

To replace the battery, you have options.

The ROM 03 GS has replaceable batteries which you can find at RadioShack:

https://www.radioshack.com/pages/search-results?search={q=saft%20battery}

If you have a ROM 01 then the battery is soldered to the motherboard.

To replace it, usually people solder a AAA battery holder to the motherboard.

RadioShack carries this holder:

https://www.radioshack.com/products/radioshack-aaa-battery-holder?variant=20332272453

Keep in mind that this modification will endanger your motherboard because AAA batteries can leak more easily then others.

For example, a Carbon Zinc AAA battery is a leak waiting to happen.

If you do this, keep an eye on your motherboard.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Hello parkerbrown,
well it seems that my track confirms.....
for replacement checkout this link for replacement:
http://www.jameco.com/z/TL-5101-P-Tadiran-Cell-Lithium-Primary-3-6V-0-95Ah-2-Pin_33371.html
here are several threads related to the topic of soldering and desoldering....
and as intro you may checkout this page in my site:
http://www.appleii-box.de/D05_basicsoldering.htm
unless the battery is not replaced i'd recommend to wait for further testing....
it's useless to test if you don't know that you've lost in meantime your configuration data....
After replacement of the battery next text should confirm that configuration in optionspanel
is kept in memory and not lost after rebooting...
then next test should be performed with the SCSI BUT WITHOUT the Transwarp.
Reason:
Transwarp has own specific handling of the timing of the computer....
The computer should first be enabled to boot simple from SCSI without acceleration...
when that task is completed too - then you may add the transwarp back to the system....

sincerely
speedyG

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Just got home from work, so let me say a few words before bed and then further testing in the morning.

Since I didn't mention it before, I just wanted to let everyone know that I'm not a complete noob on the whole, just with vintage Apples. I've been working with computers all my life, I'm handy with a soldering iron, and have a good grasp of electrical workings. My problem here is that this system predates my skills. I grew up with DOS and Windows 3.1, I didn't get an Apple computer until 2012 and it was a MacBook running OS X.

My IIGS is a Version 1, and will not boot past the checkerboard without the Transwarp installed. It just sits there.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

I warmed up my iron, replaced the battery with a 3xAAA box, set the time and slots, rebooted.....

It held! So my battery problem is solved!

I ran the self test and got "System Bad: 0B03000" which Google said was the Transwarp. I reseated it, ran it again, and got "System Good" with all cards installed (so battery definitely fixed).

I now get "UNABLE TO LOAD PRODOS" on boot, so it's at least trying to boot from the SCSI HDD. And about the spin up time issue: I have my monitor and HDD on the aux channel of my System Saver with the IIGS on the master channel. When I boot, I turn on aux and wait for the HDD to get up to speed, then I turn on the IIGS. So spin up time should not be an issue (by my logic, anyway).

One more thing before I go to bed: I received the 3.5" floppy set I ordered (just in case) of the IIGS System Disk and "Your Apple Tour of the Apple IIGS" which I hope I don't have to use, as I want to keep Sam's data until I can back it up. But I have them now, so that's an option.

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

If the Transwarp is set to:Slot 7 Speed = slow
and mistake keeps present, then you may assume that the harddisk has
detected a bad sector in one of the 2 system files.......
boot from diskette in slot 6 and then try to get info back from:
Catalog S7,D1 ( enter )

Prodos should then list the files from the root of the harddisk.....
there should be 2 files present:
Prodos.sys
and
Basic.sys

rename 1st file to
damagedprodos.sys
and rename second file to:
damagedBasic.sys

Then copy Prodos.sys and Basic.sys from S6,D1 to S7,d1.
After the 2 files have been copied to Harddisk
try to reboot from Harddisk without system floppy in S6, d1.
Then start to backup your files....

sincerely
speedyG

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Booted from from the disk, and I got this:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/895ijt8kbrg0dcc/20161108_134141.jpg?dl=0

Mouse does not respond (it was fine back when I got System 6.0.1 to boot), now what?

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

That proves that you have access to the system.....
did you never read the manual about use of system
with keyboard instead of the mouse ? Then it's time to do it now !
From the launcher you can select by use of the keyboard the
SYSTEM.UTILS

To move from one option button on the screen to another option button use the tab-key !

to select the highlighted option or command button use the enter key !

This happened because you started from the disk and the mouse driver has not been loaded.
When you have repaired the system files on the harddisk and boot from the harddisk again
then the system should also load the mouse driver and the mouse will be present again !

the other option would be to boot without the transwarp.
Be sure that the CPU has been relocated to the mainbopard !
then set back at the options panel slot 4 to : Mouse.....
then the mouse will be accessable from disk boot !
If you want to keep at the moment the Transwarp in the system while booting from disk
remove the computer eyes card from system and store it outside till system is back up again and:
change the settings of the transwarp to slot 2 and relocate the card to that slot 2
and boot again !
After relocation the mouse will also be availiable - if you have changed in the options panel:
slot 2: own card
slot 4: mouse

That would permit you to perform the rename and copy tasks.
If you don't have the manual download it from:
http://mirrors.apple2.org.za/Apple%20II%20Documentation%20Project/Software/Operating%20Systems/Apple%20IIGS%20System/Manuals/Apple%20IIGS%20System%20Disk%20User's%20Guide.pdf
and:
http://mirrors.apple2.org.za/Apple%20II%20Documentation%20Project/Software/Operating%20Systems/Apple%20IIGS%20System/Manuals/Apple%20IIGS%20System%206%20User's%20Reference.pdf

start here at page 244 !

remark: this editor has problem with apostroph sign.
don't click the Link ! copy and paste it to the adressline of your browser !

sincerely
speedyG

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Speedy, the mouse fix worked! Wasn't using Eyes anyway, so it's pulled and Transwarp is in slot 3.

I see PRODOS listed on the disks, but it's just PRODOS, not PRODOS.SYS and they're grayed out. Most non-folder things are, in fact. Even for those that aren't, I don't see an option for renaming them. The only buttons available are Disk, Open, Close, and Quit.

(15 minutes later)
I ran "DESKTOP.SYS16" on a hunch, got a more familiar GUI!IO renamed and replaced PRODOS and BASIC.SYSTEM, now I'm getting the error "No SYSTEM/P16 file found $000E" when it tries to boot from the HDD. Thoughts?

I guess tomorrow's reading material is the manuals, since I haven't looked at a single word of one! I figured they came with manuals, but never had one in my possession (digital or paper).

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Re: Troublesome IIGS - attempting to boot

Of course if the files have been renamed but at the other hand
no replacement files copied from disk to harddisk its exactly the correct behaviour....

Read the manuals to avoid mistakes !

focus to topic of copy files !
copy the systemfiles i named to the harddisk.

If you have both prodos versions on the disk choose the 16 bit version ( .P16 ) to copy to the harddisk.
At the moment the behavior of the computer prooves that you are on the correct track to solve the problem.

sincerely
speedyG

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