One of those arhhhhhh f#?k moments

Fired up the X1000 today. it was time to get some of the software updated and I thought it would be enjoyable. Instead, I ended up with one of those sinking stomach feeling moments and cursing myself for the last 20 minutes.

I had decided to use Ignition (native spread sheet programme on the Amiga) to catalogue a few items. I remembered there was a Libre Office plug in for it which allows saving/loading .ods files and I thought it would be a good chance to install and try it out, along with the dropbox/google storage application available for AmigaOS4 (Yay, sharing files easily). One of the requirements for the Libre Office plugin is zip/unzip so I proceeded to extract the binary only for them, opposed to the whole archive from their respective archives and then install the plugin.

The installer was not happy and claimed zip was not available so I fired up a shell and had a look. Yup, I had extracted the zip/unzip binaries but it placed it within its own directory within the C: assign, so with my mind elsewhere I copied the binary to C: and proceeded to delete the directory it had left behind.

Next thing I realise is that my shell is scrolling off the screen with the below messages ad-nauseam:

unzip Deleted
zip Deleted
unzip-5.52-bin Deleted
zip-2.31-bin Deleted
MountDiskImage Deleted
fc-scan Deleted
fc-validate Deleted
LhA Deleted

What I was seeing took a minute to sink in but by then it was to late, I realised the entire contents of my C directory was gone.

The first thing I did was copy and paste the output of deleted files to a text editor before doing anything else, sat back and was like well…. f#?k. To those who don’t know AmigaOS, C: is a logical assign as in it acts like a partition but is actually a directory on the Sys: partition. C: itself holds a number of critical and important AmigaOS commands so losing the contents of this directory was not a nice experience.

The next thing I did was look for my AmigaOS4.1 FE install CD. I thought I could potentially copy the C: files from it or worst case, re-install over the top of the existing partition. During this find and seek exercise, I remembered I have an older backup of my Sys: partition and decided to see what undelete options were available bfore going to extremes. Hello .recycled directory!

I am running SFS as the file system on my Sys: partition, it has a .recycled directory. It apparently remembers the last ~360 deleted files and sure enough, there they were. So I grabbed my copy of the deleted output, did a bit of find/replace on the text file to use the backed up C: directory and copied everything back from .recycled into Sys:c/ and so far so good (Currently typing this up on said Amiga X1000).

Mental note it’s not “delete #? zip-2.31-bin/all” it should be “delete zip-2.31-bin/#? all”.  Wow, that was truely a brain fart moment.

New Graphics Card for the X1000 and Other Guff

So I have the next week off. I finished work for for the company I worked for and start at a new one in a weeks time and have decided to get a few things in order.

One of the things which has been bugging me is my AmigaOne X1000 and so I plan to do a re-install of AmigaOS4.1 FE in conjunction with the enhancer pack I just recently purchased as well. One thing which has been causing me to hold back was the fact that the graphics card I bought for the X1000 when initially purchased is an ATI HD 6870. I went for the better of the cards available at the time since I thought it would be a better long term investment ie. would not need to upgrade as soon as if I can a less powerful card. Unfortunately things didn’t quite work out the way I had hoped. A new version of Warp3D was released some time ago for the new AmigaOne computers and it didn’t support the card I have. At the date of the launch, support for the Northern Island (HD 6000) series was promised so I have been holding out but I have seen no hint that it will ever appear so I have given up on that idea.

Now I have the time, and it appears the bearings in my current card may be on the way out, I decided to get myself a new AMD R9 270x off EBay. I was looking at the R7 250x which a local shop had for sale but except for the fact it is supported by Warp3D, grunt wise it is pretty comparable with the ATI HD 6870 so without paying to much more, I found the R9 270x on EBay and look forward to it turning up.

If I remember, I will do a benchmark to compare the old 6870 with the R9 270x and publish them.

yeah ummmm… stuff

The server I am running on is pretty old and crappy. DNS and other things are periodically falling over atm so I have registered a new server and I am in the process of migrating everything to it at the moment. It’s a better spec’ed server and cheaper to boot. So until that is done, expect this site to fall over from time to time.

Outline Fonts on Workbench

One of the great things and sometimes frustrating depending on your point of viea about the Amiga and Workbench is it’s flexibility when it comes to configuring the way it looks. If it exists you can generally change the way it looks. One of the more common items which gets changed from time to time is the wallpaper in use and since I seem to like a lot of dark coloured wallpapers, one of the things that gets me is that when I use them, you lose the icon names of your drives on Workbench since they are usually set to black.

Where have my icon names gone?

Where have my icon names gone?

It is an easy issue to fix, you just change the text to use outline mode but I always seem to spend a few minutes looking in¬†the wrong locations to do this. My logic seems to send me to the Workbench and GUI preferences first rather than the font preferences. Once in the Font preferences you select the Workbench font gadget and within there, change the mode to “Text+Outline” then click OK and Save and problem is solved. Readable Workbench icons names.

The Font Preferences. The correct place to be at last.

The Font Preferences. The correct place to be at last.

Text+Outline mode. That's the ticket.

Text+Outline mode. That’s the ticket.

Workbench icon names back. All is right in the world again.

Workbench icon names back. All is right in the world again.

And that’s it really. I created this post for myself as well as anyone else who runs into this issue and goes blank trying to remember what and where to do and go to fix it.

Wings Remastered for AmigaNG Systems

There have been posts about the recentish Wings Remastered kickstarter also being ported to the current AmigaNG systems; AmigaOS4, MorphOS and AROS x86. The main item I want to raise is that only 20 more copies need to be pre-ordered for further development to become a reality. So I would like to ecclesiastically suggest that people go and have a look into this if they have not already done so. So rather than complain about software not being produced for the NG platforms how about putting your money where your mouth is.


this is Sven from Cinemaware. First thanks for all your support. I want to give you an update and some short information. This physical release is limited to 300 Editions. This will be the only physical release, no 2nd Boxed-Edition will follow. It will be a classic BigBox with the Manual (Aviation Manual included), Poster and a CD which includes the Game and the Soundtrack. Also the classic Wings is included.

One important thing. This is a real community project. Daniel worked for free till now and continues with developing if we reach 150 sales (right now we are around 130) but can only be completed paid if we sell all 300 copies. We, Cinemaware, will not earn anything on this game. If all 300 Boxes are sold, he can also fully concentrate on the Port, so the release of Feb. 2016 is really safe. Sales goes complete to Daniel for the port and the production of the box. So its really important that we get sold out ūüôā If this project and also the “Defender”-Project are successfull, then other ports to Amiga-Systems are realistic.

So please support this game and also spread the word and link ūüôā


Source: Wings Remastered [Forums – AmigaOS4] – The Amigans website

Holden, What a Bunch of Bastards – part 2

Well, I did start typing this up a few months ago but just didn’t have the energy to do it.

Long story short, we were without our car for a good 6 months or more and when we finally got told we could pick it up, it took another week longer before we got to take it home since they never put it back together properly when we went to get it.

Visit this site for a list of the worst cars in Australia you could buy and the Holden Cruze comes in at the number 1 spot. This was only exasperated by the terrible attitude and lack of service we received from Heartland Holden when trying to get the car fixed. We did end up getting some token support from Holden themselves when it became hard not to notice how bad the situation was but it was a case of too little, too late. Once we got the car back, we traded it in for a Mitsubishi and have been very happy with the new vehicle.

Ironically, after we got the new car, we received a letter from Holden telling us they had extended the warranty on the Cruze. A warranty we had to fight tooth and nail to get the dealership to honour in the first place!

Holden, What a Bunch of Bastards

UPDATE:¬†(29/12/2014 – 11:26) After asking to speak to the manager at the dealership to try and find out why we still can’t get our car, they actually called us back as promised (hold me up while I faint). Apparently the car is also¬†suffering from an electrical problem and can’t start. Going off past experience, we now don’t expect to get our car back any time soon so we are still without. This has also screwed us with getting a new car as we were hoping to take advantage of the end of year sales and had even gotten a quote on a vehicle we were interested in.

For the most part, this is directed at Heartland Holden since they have been complete bastards from the get go but by the time of this entry being typed up, some of the excrement has now been smeared onto Holden Australia as well. I also must warn you that this might go on for a bit as it is turning into somewhat of an on going saga for us at present with no end in sight.

After my motorcycle accident, my girlfriend and myself realised we were going to require a car. We had been informed by the doctors that my recovery prognosis was not looking all that great and as it turns out, they considered it a miracle that I kept my leg at all, further re-enforcing the extent of damage I had suffered (as if massive loss of blood and going into cardiac arrest was not enough). At the three week mark of my internment in hospital, my girlfriend had gone over a number of different car brochures with myself and after discussions had approached Heartland Holden about the purchase of a brand new base model Holden Cruze SRi hatch.

My girlfriend, whilst putting the order in enquired about the time it would take until pick up of the car was available and naively mentioned that she needed the car within the next few weeks so it would be ready for when I got out of the hospital. This was most likely a mistake since Heartland Holden jumped onto this tid-bit and informed her that the car would not be ready for about 3-4 weeks but they had the more upmarket model, a Holden Cruze SRi-V in stock which would be ready for pick up within one to one and a half weeks. Since we were worried about time and the idea of a little bit of luxury for a little extra money after the crap we had already been through was appealing so we agreed.

Most people will already have guessed that this was a flat out lie and that the dealership had taken advantage of my girlfriends mental state due to the stress she had been going through and the situation at large to take us for the proverbial ride.

Anyway, one and a half weeks had passed, nothing from the dealership. No call, no emails, no SMS’es. There was a complete lack of communication from them so my girlfriend rang them and was given a¬†weak excuse about delivery problems and that it would take another 5 days. Another 5 days pass, AGAIN¬†nothing from Heartland Holden¬†AGAIN we had to chase them up and¬†AGAIN the same pathetic excuse. To speed up the narrative, this went on for so long were heartland would not contact us with updates even after constantly requesting them that after I had been in hospital for about two and a half months we still¬†DIDN’T have the car as promised. That’s right, the car promised to arrive in less than two weeks had not arrive in over a month and a half! In stock my arse, they had to build it from scratch is the more likely reason.

At this stage, I could not walk and was stuck in a wheel chair so this was not a good position for us. On top of that, my girlfriend was totally stressed out and felt she had let me down. She had at numerous times explained our situation to the dealership in the hopes it would help only to receive silence from them and arrogant and aggressive responses from the dealership when she had to contact them for an update. Her father ended up helping out by calling up and demanding a courtesy car from the dealer ship.

After about two months, we finally get the car. It seemed nice. It was a nice ride and we put the whole crappy car buying experience behind us. What a mistake.

Within less than 3 months the first problem struck. We had booked the car in for its first service and then a few days before it was due to go in, coming home it was experiencing problems with changing gears. We were lucky, as we entered our street, it couldn’t change gears at all but thankfully we managed to nurse it to the front of our house. It turns out that the gearbox¬†had failed. Heartland Holden claim it was a defective part.

Three weeks later after a handful of phone calls from us to Heartland Holden who again exhibited to us their continued excellence in crap customer service, the car was still not fixed and was waiting for the part to come from overseas. So much for trying to do the right thing and support Australian business since a large amount of the parts turned out to be manufactured overseas and not locally. Again, my girlfriends father rang the dealership to help us get another courtesy car which was needed since I needed to consistently visit a number of specialist due to the accident.

Roughly two to three months later (yes months) and constant calls from us to the dealership we finally get the car back. Again, stupidly thinking the worst was behind us we move on.

Move forward another 12 months and ~13000 kilometres on the odometer, after a visit to her parents, my girlfriend was coming home on the motorway late at night, only to have the car suddenly lose all power, forcing her to cross two lanes of traffic to get to the side of the road. This was not a pleasant experience. This all occurred about three weeks before Christmas.

After a couple of calls to Heartland Holden, again putting their excellent lack of customer service on display, we were informed that the entire clutch assembly needs to be replaced. To top this piece of excellent news was the fact that it was not covered by what we have discovered to be Holdens totally useless warranty since it is classified as wear and tear and to make things even better will cost us $4000 to fix! After a few calls where we trying to get to the bottom of the problem at hand and where we received no calls but got to enjoy the always consistent aggressive and belligerent attitude from Heartland Holden we have learnt to expect when calling them, we put in a complaint to Holden Australia.

At the same time, we had also requested from Heartland Holden a list of what they believe needs to be replaced and told¬†they will send it through when they¬†have the time. The attitude I received with this request was totally dismissive so I pressed them for an actual time frame and was promised by close of business that day. The time of the call I had made to them was before lunch so I can’t see who it would be hard to fulfil but to date, no, we have not received said list.

Since the dealership claims the damage was caused by us riding the clutch, I have spoken to a few mechanics and two points seem to pop up; The Holden Cruze has a reputation where their clutches tend to go way to easily and to have burnt the clutch out from riding it within less than 15000 kilometres would basically require you riding the clutch 100% of the time you were driving.

Due to the fact that we can’t rely on the car and yes, I am still disabled and still attending¬†specialist appointments due to my accident, we have decided that once we get the car sorted out and once we have it back to get rid of it. To this end, we have started to look into a potential replacement and I can guarantee we will never get another Holden again after the experiences we have had with this one.

Holden Australia got back to us just before Christmas and surprise surprise took the side of the dealership. They also informed us that the car is ready for pick up. Well today, we thought that due to past experience before getting the father in-law over to give us a lift to pick the car up it would be best to confirm it really is ready. No, it’s not. In fact, heartland Holden still can’t tell us when it will be available. Seriously, WTF! To improve our disposition towards Heartland Holden even more, we were going over our finance agreement and discovered they had put Balloon Insurance in even though, when they asked my girlfriend if we wanted it she gave them an¬†unequivocally no. Unfortunately, due to her state of mind at the time, she didn’t notice they had slipped it in anyway. Way to take advantage of someone Heartland Holden.

This whole schmozzle has definitely had an impact on us and has also dredged up bad emotions linked to my accident. Anyway, as I mentioned, from the beginning, we have had nothing but constant lies,  extremely poor and totally pathetic customer service and aggressive/belligerent treatment from Heartland Holden. I could not in any conscience recommend them to anyone and at this point in time, even though they (Holden Australia) were a lot nicer on the phone, recommend Holden as a car choice either. We bought a new car for reliability and in the worse case to be covered by warranty, and to date, we had neither of these things.

My Rack Mountable Amiga 1200

It’s been a while since the last time I have posted anything but I would say recentish personal circumstances can be blamed for a large proportion of that.

Back in the days when I lived in shared housing, I came across a strange beast on EBay claiming to be a rack mountable Amiga 1200. At the time, I was after a replacement A1200 motherboard and decided to buy this out of curiosity. The claim was that it had been in use by an RSL club in Australia and performed things such as Club Keno results and advertised upcoming events.

When I received the computer and opened it up I quickly realised there was a decent amount of custom work done to get the A1200 to carry out its required tasks and decided it would be interesting to get it up and going again. As I mentioned, I lived in shared housing which lacked the space to set this up at the time as well as provided an unstable environment.

Move forward to the present day. After my move into a more permanent residence, I have been slowly sorting out my retro Amiga kit out and came across my A1200 Rack Mountable ‘server’. It is currently missing the KS ROMs and an accelerator. I have since dug up an accelerator for it but I only have a spare pair of KS 3.0 ROMs and the A1200 apparently has Workbench 3.1 installed.

I saw a post on AmigaWorld about rack mountable Amiga’s and decided to grab a few snap shots of mine before I carry out any work on it.

Huenison – A Special Sale at the Moment

If you are a fan of wacky, retro and nostalgic type games, then you might want to have a look at Huenison. It is currently on sale where you get to pay what you want and your money will also go to a good cause. The sale link appears to be for the Windows version but I personally purchased a copy of the AmigaOS4 version from RGCD which I have enjoyed playing, I must admit badly, initially on my Sam440ep and now on my X1000.

And the Verdict is Guilty

Just a quick update on what is turning into an annoying and ongoing saga called my current life (then again, whose isn’t?).

I was contacted by the police today (26/12/2013) in regards to my life changing accident which occurred about 8 months ago now. They have informed me that the man who totally screwed me over by trying to drive through the space I was inhabiting at the time with his Nissan patrol fronted by a bull bar has admitted in a court of law that he was guilty of the crimes in question.

I don’t think I mentioned it previously but the police had determined the incident to be bad enough that they had laid charges against the driver in question.

While this doesn’t magically fix the physical and emotional damage done to myself or my family, it does cross off one more thing I have to get through to move on through the whole sordid affair and will also allow us to move on with getting the situation sorted out with his insurance company.