24Sep/120

Spectranet Module Installer

posted by news

Guesser has released another useful thing for Spectranet.

This packages up a spectranet rom module with a small installer program so that it can be installed on a spectranet without having to send it over the network with "ethup".

The requirement of using ethup means you can't install a module without using a PC. It also makes it hard if not impossible to install modules into an emulated spectranet using the current implementation in Fuse (you can't send data to fuse using ethup on windows at least).

This installer can be run from a spectranet filesystem (e.g. a tnfs share) or loaded as a tape into an emulator.

The script (either make-installer.bat for windows or make-installer.sh for *nix) is given the filename of the .module file and uses the bin2tape utility from the spectranet development tools to create a temporary .tap file called module.tap
This is then joined to the installer-dist file which is the tap file containing the actual loader and installer program creating a file called foo.pkg where foo was the name of the .module file you started with.

this ".pkg" file is just a tap file and can be loaded into fuse as you would any tap file, then LOAD""
Alternatively it can be placed on a tnfs server for example and loaded on a spectrum by performing %tapein "foo.pkg" followed by the LOAD""

The module installer program displays the name of the module being installed and allows you to confirm or abort. If there is another module with the same "module id" already installed you can install anyway (if you wanted them both installed on purpose), abort, or replace the existing one (so you can overwrite a module with a newer version for example).
If you opt to replace a module it will show you a "collision list" which is a list of all the modules installed with that id (which will usually just be one) and ask you which one to overwrite.

It's not the most user friendly tool in the world, because once it met my requirements I didn't polish it too much further. The documentation's not exactly brilliant either but hopefully it will fill a gap until I, Winston, or someone else create a better way of getting modules into spectranets

You can get the zip file here which also contains all the source code.

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