Table of Content


IMPORTANT NOTICE : All the programs presented here have been replaced by the Aufit project and therefore are not maintained anymore.

This page contains information about several programs that I have written around the images produced by the KryoFlux controller board produced by KryoFlux Products & Services Limited. My experience with the Kryoflux hardware is described in "The Kryoflux Device".

KryoFlux and Software Preservation Society (SPS) already provide all necessary information for the usage of the board with different platform (Amiga, PC, Atari, etc.). Therefore the focus of this page is to provide technical information for developers that want to write programs around the Kryoflux. Therefore you will find here several technical documentations and programs that I have written based on SPS and KryoFlux documents and sources.

This is related to the subject of Atari FD protection and to preservation. For more generic information on this subject please refer to Atari Floppy Disk Preservation page.

Results of Analysis of protected Atari Floppy Disk can be found in the Analysis of Kryoflux images page

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The Stream Protocol / Format Documentation

The following document provides a description of the Stream Files content (as produced by firmware 2.0) produced by the DTC (Disk Tool Console) program connected to a KryoFlux Device. The document also provides assistance on Decoding or Encoding Stream Files. It is based on my understanding of the KryoFlux documentations published by Software Preservation Society and KryoFlux Product & Services Limited but it also includes information based on experimentations and programing (using sources provided by SPS). I want to thanks István Fabián from SPS who has provided to me with a lot of detailed information on how KryoFlux device operates and on the source code used to decode a Stream File.

The Stream internal content is described in the following document:

Note: Regular user of the KryoFlux device should not be concerned by the information presented in this document which is mainly of interest to programmers that want to write tools around the Stream Files.

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Creating Atari FD Images with KryoFlux

The main goal of the KryoFlux device is to create images of FD for preservation. The imaging process is done with the command line DTC software or through the DTC GUI. The DTC program come with a documentation on how to use it.

Basically if you are trying to image Atari floppy disks you should use the minimum following command:

Where <name> is the name of the program you want to image. Basically the -i2 option is required for preservation and the -i4 option is recommended as it forces to KryoFlux device to performs retries when it has problem reading a track. In most cases this is caused by a protection mechanism but sometimes it can happen if the FD is dirty. Using this flag results in a longer imaging time, because many retries are performed, but this is a small price to pay to get more accurate images.

I have modified the original doDump.bat batch file provided by SPS. This new batch file is called AtariDump.bat and is tailored for Atari users. It fills for you many default values suitable for Atari and it uses the -i4 switch so you get perfect images of Atari FD. By default the name of the game that you enter is used to create a directory and stream files (the spaces are removed) but you can specify another name if you want. The stream files uses the following name <game_name>(current_disk-max_disk)track.head.raw and a <game_name>.txt file that contain the information you have entered is created in the same directory.

For example if you enter "Maniac Mansion" as the name of the game, and if the game has two discs, a directory called ManicMansion (note that the space is removed from the name) is created and in this directory you will find the following files:

This is also the recommanded way to create images for usage with the KFPanzer program as this program is expecting the stream file using the above naming convention.

New: The DTC program display a lot of useful information on the screen but unless you stay stuck in front of your screen all this information is lost! Therefore I have added the option to log all the messages (both stdout and stderr) to files that you can read later. These files are created in the game directory and have the format <game_name>(current_disk-max_disk).log

For example with the above example two files will be generated: ManiacMansion(1-2).log & ManiacMansion(2-2).log

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KryoFlux Programs & Programming

Here are some development that I have done around the KryoFlux board. Stay tune for more

The provided program and libraries are for Windows only (any version of Windows should work). For the program development I recommend that you use the free Visual Studio from Microsoft for the C/C++ and the Doxygen program for documentation.

If you are not familiar with the usage of external lib in VC++ programs development you can refer to this documentation from Microsoft.

Important: Normally you should not have to install anything to use the executables. However if you are getting a message like msvcp100.dll is missing you need to install the Microsoft Visual C++ 2010 redistribuable package.

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KFStream Library

As the name indicates this library provides an easy API to access all the decoded information from a Stream file. The KFStream library is based on source code originally written by SPS that I have modified and it is released assources for Visual C++. (not released)

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The KFCheck Program

This not a very useful program but I did it mainly to validate and demonstrate how easy it is to use the KFStream library.

This program uses the KFStream library to fully decode a Stream File (it supports the Stream file format produced by version 2.0 of the firmaware) and checks its content for consistency. The program will detect if something went wrong during the transfer of the data from the KryoFlux device to the connected PC and it allows to dump in ASCII the content of the stream file. This program should run on any version of Windows (tested on Windows 7 X64). At the end of the excution the program also outputs the average transfer rate over the USB link, the number of revolutions used for Imaging the track, the minimum, average, and maximum values for the Rotations Per Minute (RPM), and the number of flux transitions for one track.

You will find several test cases here + a simple test case of KryoFlux firmware v2.0 thanks István (use the -n option on this one)

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The KFEmul Library

This library decodes the information from a Stream file using the KFStream library and provides several functions that processes the flux reversals as a Western Digital WD1772 FDC (emulation) would do. For that matter the input transitions are pipelined through a DPLL (digital phase lock loop), a shift register, and an address mark detector. The program is based on the work I did many years ago around the Discovery Cartridge (some ideas and code where done more than 20 years ago!) but has been completely rewritten in C++.

The program analyzes all the flux transitions from an input stream files and provides three main functions:

The KFEmul library also provide the capability to produce "plot files" to be used with the Ploticus program as well as powerful automatic functions to find all the disk copy protection mechanisms used on the decoded track. (not released)

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The KFAnalyze Program

This program is built on top of the FKEmul and KFStream libraries. It is provided as an executable but the sources are also provided as an example of how to use the KFEmul library.

The program analyzes a raw Stream File and "decode" the transitions in the file as a Western Digital WD1772 floppy disk controller would do.

Execution is done in three main phases:

The program is also capable of creating plots of the track and sectors.

You will find in the page Analysis of Atari KryoFlux Images several examples of analysis of Atari games with the KFAnalyze program as well as several test cases.

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The KFPanzer Program

This program is built on top of the FKEmul and KFStream libraries. It is provided as an executable but the sources are also provided as an example of how to use the KFEmul library.

The KFPanzer (KryoFlux Protection ANalyZER) checks and prints the floppy disk copy protection mechanisms found on an Atari Floppy Diskette. The FD first need to be imaged as a set of Stream files produced by a KryoFlux board from KryoFlux Products & Services Ltd.

A detail description of all the protections checked can be found in my document “Atari Floppy Disk Copy Protection Based on Key Disk”. However a short description of the protection detected can be found in the KFPanzer user's manual. This program is very handy to automatically check all the protections on a set of Floppy Disks that compose a game/program. It is a companion to the KFAnalyze program.

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