A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Hardware questions and modifications

A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby DarkStar2032 » Fri Jul 31, 2020 1:51 am

Okay.
Last month I finally broke down and bought a jrIDE from Tex-elec.
For the past month I have tried in vain to set it up.

Unfortunately, most of my computer knowledge is self-taught, and apparently nowhere near the level of most of my peers here.
I never used DEBUG before getting this upgrade, so I'm mostly stumbling through the piece-meal setup instructions on this forum.

My problems:
1: Can't get the ram addressed correctly. Post recognizes correct, up to 640k. But PCJRRAM returns a setup error. Otherwise DOS refuses to correctly address the RAM.
2: Can't FDISK CF flash to IDE adapter. I screwed up two 256mb CF cards trying to get this working. Got it to recognize 128mb industrial CF card, but it refuses to create a DOS partition, it keeps returning that there is no room.
3: Won't keep time. I suspect a conflict with a previous DS1216E upgrade I forgot I installed over two years ago. I previously cycled though the irq's to no avail.

I've got DOS 2.1, 3.1 and 5.0 floppies on hand. I've only been able to boot with a bare 3.1 disk. jrIDE posts correctly. I don't really care witch version it runs, as long as it runs.

Is anyone else having trouble setting this up or am I just a complete idiot? :oops:
Hi-ho, KERMIT the computer file transfer/management protocol here.
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Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby jscrow » Fri Jul 31, 2020 6:34 pm

The short answer to your questions:

1. You need to use a device driver (jrconfig.sys) for DOS to report more than 128k.
2. I had to use DEBUG to remove the non-DOS partitions on my CF cards (and DOMs) before running FDISK.
3. Use rtc.com (from Retrotronics) to set/read jrIDE clock.

Also, you will need to patch DOS 5 before using on the PCjr. One advantage of DOS 5 is that it will allow you to use the full 256MB on your CF card without dividing into 32MB partitions.

Hope this helps get you started!
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Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby Brutman » Fri Jul 31, 2020 7:34 pm

  • I'm not sure what is plaguing PCJRRAM but I would use jrconfig instead. It can be downloaded from http://www.brutman.com/PCjr/pcjr_downloads.html .
  • Ensure the CF card does not have anything in the boot sector. Wipe it to zeros using debug.com
  • After you have wiped the boot sector, use fdisk /mbr to partition the CF card. The /mbr option lays down the new code in the boot sector you need to make the drive bootable.
  • DOS 3.3? No problem. DOS 5 or better? You will need to patch the boot sector of the CF card.

Instructions for using debug.com to wipe the boot sector and patching the MBR for DOS 5 can be found here on a previous thread: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=853
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Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby Hargle » Mon Aug 03, 2020 6:37 am

Is there a wiki out there that we could start collecting and adding jrIDE info to so that we could put together?

I'd also like to see a BIOS update to handle the RTC automagically, then open source it.
If I were retired and idle (as I hope to be soon) I'd even go in and add some diagnostic and setup features into the ROM, like many SCSI option ROMs had back in the day. For example, we could add an MBR wipe tool directly into the ROM.
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Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby DarkStar2032 » Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:19 am

Update:

Ram and clock working. Xfer'ed over the needed files with KERMIT and configured it correctly.

CF to IDE still not working even after trying the debug trick.
I was actually worried I bricked both the CF adapter and the two CF cards.
Waiting on some DOMs, but, you know, China.
Hi-ho, KERMIT the computer file transfer/management protocol here.
And welcome to NULL MODEM Street.
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Location: Northern Minnesota

Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby DarkStar2032 » Fri Aug 07, 2020 1:48 pm

So, for those following along, here's what I did.
I used KERMIT to transfer [RTC.COM], [JRCONFIG.SYS], and [LOWRD.SYS] to my DOS 3.1 work disk.
Then I cheated and copied an existing [CONFIG.SYS] over.
Then I used [EDLIN] to edit the [CONFIG.SYS]
1
1*DEVICE=JRCOFIG.SYS
E
I verified the [CONFIG.SYS]
Rebooted. Working.

Next, I set the jrIDE jumpers to IRQ1.
Booted.
Entered current date and time.
Entered the following.

RTC /R /O (Write to clock from DOS time, POST off)

Reboot.

RTC /D /O (Set DOS time from clock, POST off)

Verify time. Working.

Hope this helps someone.
Hi-ho, KERMIT the computer file transfer/management protocol here.
And welcome to NULL MODEM Street.
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Location: Northern Minnesota

Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby DarkStar2032 » Wed Aug 19, 2020 11:53 pm

Does the IRQ jumper only effect the Clock or the whole thing?
I may have fried the IDE setup.
The last 5 times I've tried fdisk it gives me and error reading drive.
JRIDE still recognizes the drive and displays the ID.
????
Hi-ho, KERMIT the computer file transfer/management protocol here.
And welcome to NULL MODEM Street.
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Location: Northern Minnesota

Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby FortMax » Thu Aug 20, 2020 1:33 pm

The IRQ is only for the clock.
PCjr w/ Rapport Drive 2 + 384KB Memory Expansion Package, jrIDE
Wanted: light pen
Documentation (including new and updated pages for the Guide to Operations) from:
PC Compact Printer
Speech Attachment (except for the installation instructions)
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Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby DarkStar2032 » Thu May 06, 2021 1:19 am

Okay, here we go again.

First, I never did manage to get any of my solid-state drives to work with the jrIDE. I went over budget and gave up when the sd cart came out (It is soo much simpler.)

Now after messing around with the printer sidecar, the RTC has stopped working.
I've tried all four irq settings, disconnected and reconnected the sdcart, printer sidecar, jride.
Also tried a different version of rtc.com to no avail.
I can't figure out the post codes.

codes that come up on post are E.d. and F3

Please help. I'm reaching the limits of my patience with this card and am seriously starting to regret getting it.
Hi-ho, KERMIT the computer file transfer/management protocol here.
And welcome to NULL MODEM Street.
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Posts: 39
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2020 1:55 pm
Location: Northern Minnesota

Re: A complete idiots guide to the jrIDE

Postby Brutman » Thu May 13, 2021 3:13 pm

Are you open to sending your jrIDE to somebody else for diagnostic work and possibly repairs?

I'm not electrical engineer and I didn't design the jrIDE. But I can usually get to the failing component. The jrIDE is a bit strange because of the CPLD devices; I'm not sure if they "lose" their programming, but if Alan gives me some pointers I can figure out how to reprogram one. (I have a parallel port version of the programming cable and the original Windows XP machine that I used years ago to program the first jrIDE.)


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