Re: What value emulators? - CP/M

This is a discussion on Re: What value emulators? - CP/M ; On Thu, 3 Jul 2008 09:15:26 -0500, "John Crane" wrote: >All, > >I think I'm missing the picture on the emulators... > >I've seen lots of posts regarding emulators of vintage machines. Do they >have a value other than educational, ...

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Thread: Re: What value emulators?

  1. Re: What value emulators?

    On Thu, 3 Jul 2008 09:15:26 -0500, "John Crane" wrote:

    >All,
    >
    >I think I'm missing the picture on the emulators...
    >
    >I've seen lots of posts regarding emulators of vintage machines. Do they
    >have a value other than educational, or perhaps a minimal value to test
    >something if you don't want to fire up the old box?
    >
    >People seem to spend a lot of time & effort on these emulators. And I
    >really can't see the justification for it. Is it something else to do, once
    >you've mastered the old box; to make a software copy of it?
    >
    >If someone is going to make a modern day "copy", I'd prefer a hardware one,
    >like the new Altair kits floating around. Anyone can code these days. But
    >maybe I'm just a traditionalist.
    >
    >
    >-J


    In genral I find emulators of a specific machine amusing. I do not
    dismiss them as useless. There are many out there and most have
    varying degrees of useful attributes. I gernally use MyZ80, and Dave
    Dunfields Horizon emulators as both allow me to work in a preferred
    environment namely CP/M. However, Dave';s machine is a emulation of
    S100 hardware namely the NS* horizon and since that has and in my
    Z80 development platform of choice I find it especially useful for
    running stuff that is not CP/M or even NS*. It's good also since the
    emulator has a debugger and can communicate with virtualized
    hardware. Very handy.

    Others I use emulate 1802, PDP-8 and PDP11.

    Handy tool they are. But more often than not they are "perfect" and
    do not suffer the annoyances of bus noise, weak power supplies
    and real life flaws that make troubleshooting the real iron both fun
    and instructive. That and often I use the emulators to create code
    so I can make real iron work.


    Allison

  2. Re: What value emulators?

    On Jul 5, 7:31 pm, Allison wrote:

    > Handy tool they are. But more often than not they are "perfect" and
    > do not suffer the annoyances of bus noise, weak power supplies
    > and real life flaws that make troubleshooting the real iron both fun
    > and instructive. That and often I use the emulators to create code
    > so I can make real iron work.


    I concurr with my colleague and friend: I like to work with the
    hardware. But many people seem to want to work with the software. They
    want to run CP/M programs, or write CP/M utilities or work on
    operating system issues. For them, the emulators are faster and more
    convenient. They also allow more convenient use of non-native software
    tools like compilers, editors, mass storage, the Internet.

    Today, one uses powerful computers to work on simpler computers and
    processors. Note that CP/M was a critical development in the days when
    *no one had computers* and had to work "native" to work at all - or
    use paper tape and front panels, or time-share some mainframe or
    minicomputer.

    A historic comment. I've been in comp.os.cpm for many MANY years. At
    one time, IBM-PC type emulators were *slower* than the real machines.
    (The original IBM-PC was slower than many Z80 machines of its time.)
    Once the MS-DOS based CP/M emulators ran *faster* than the fastest Z80
    systems, the value of Z80 hardware systems dropped quickly, and much
    CP/M discussion shifted to the emulators. Review comp.os.cpm archive
    and see if you can notice this effect. Some MS-DOS based CP/M
    emulators still in use, date from that period.

    You might also look at the recent thread: "What are your obstacles to
    running CP/M?" for measures of interest in CP/M today versus other
    "old" and new operating systems. In any event, given that there are
    millions of Windows, Linux/Unix and Mac systems in the world, it's
    much more likely someone with any CP/M interest will be running an
    emulator than running "native" hardware. The latter is my interest,
    but I can't ignore current practices.

    Herb Johnson
    retrotechnology.com

    Herbert R. Johnson, New Jersey USA
    http://www.retrotechnology.com/herbs_stuff/ web site
    http://www.retrotechnology.net/herbs_stuff/ domain mirror
    my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
    if no reply, try in a few days: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
    "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, CP/M, 8-inch floppy drives
    S-100 IMSAI Altair computers & docs by "Dr. S-100"



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