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TapeDump v1.0 - a tool to dump carts without extra hardware
http://forums.nesdev.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=7978
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Author:  ccovell [ Sun Aug 07, 2011 4:31 am ]
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A newer version of my program with more mappers:

http://www.chrismcovell.com/data/TapeDump_V060.zip

Now supports: NROM, SxROM (MMC1), UxROM, CNROM, TxROM (MMC3), AxROM, Konami VRC2a 2b 4a-e, VRC6a.

2400 bps mode works pretty reliably; 5200 less so, but it's good for a size & full dump test.

Please let me know if you come across any errors.

Author:  zzo38 [ Sun Aug 07, 2011 9:21 pm ]
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I do have one idea, which is to display a menu when the program starts to set up mappers and a few other things, and then you must push START to write the program to do that into RAM and then it is ready to swap the cartridge and do the program as explained in the manual. Another question, can it be used to dump save game files?

Author:  ccovell [ Mon Aug 08, 2011 7:11 am ]
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What you wrote is what my program does: It displays a choice of mappers, which one confirms by pressing A, and it then loads the mapper software into RAM and is ready for swapping.

For now, there is no facility to dump save games, as this is intended by me to be a poor-man's dumper for prototype cartridges and the like, and not a full suite like CopyNES. Also, with the most common mapper files like MMC1 and MMC3, the CopyNES bankswitching code is so large that there is little to no space in RAM for WRAM dumping (so I removed it, as you can see from the source code.)

Author:  zzo38 [ Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:02 am ]
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ccovell wrote:
What you wrote is what my program does: It displays a choice of mappers, which one confirms by pressing A, and it then loads the mapper software into RAM and is ready for swapping.
OK. (Note I have only read the documentation; nothing else.) You should probably correct the documentation. (It doesn't even mention 2400 bps mode and 5200 bps mode, even though this forum says so)

Author:  ccovell [ Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:51 pm ]
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ccovell wrote:
Image

Documentation is now on-screen for the most part...

Remember this is a work in progress, so updates will be posted here and only here for now while I field your comments.

Author:  thefox [ Mon Oct 10, 2011 10:47 pm ]
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Tried it out finally, works like a charm. You should maybe update the first post with the latest version.

The only problem I had was that it crashed very easily when switching carts. You could try using something like the method proposed by blargg here to make crashes less likely (and easier to detect, as the tone would stop).

Author:  ccovell [ Mon Oct 10, 2011 11:30 pm ]
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A nice idea, but on the Famicom, the audio line is cut when no cartridges are present anyway...

I was just about to post a long-awaited update to this program here, coincidentally. :-)

Author:  tokumaru [ Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:15 am ]
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Heh, the constant sprite DMA is a pretty clever trick.

Author:  thefox [ Tue Oct 11, 2011 7:40 pm ]
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ccovell wrote:
A nice idea, but on the Famicom, the audio line is cut when no cartridges are present anyway...

I guess the write to $4011 could be replaced with a write to $2001 to switch between normal and monochrome mode to produce a visible, moving pattern.

Author:  ccovell [ Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:47 pm ]
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Okay, I released my updated version with a few more mappers, FDS disk dumping, and a retroish front-end:

Image

Explanation and controls are here: http://www.chrismcovell.com/TapeDump_Controls.html

And the .NES ROMs (NTSC and PAL versions) and source are here: http://www.chrismcovell.com/data/TapeDump.zip

Thanks for your comments and help!

Author:  jpx72 [ Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:21 am ]
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This is one AWESOME project you've made! Thank you so much! I don't have the funds to buy a copyNES so this alternative is a real blessing!
I was just recently working with my PMD-85 computer where the only input is the audio input :) so I'm fresh ready for trying this! THANKS!
(by the way, cool front-end!!!)

Author:  infiniteneslives [ Wed Oct 12, 2011 2:32 am ]
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Just when you thought it couldn't get any better...

WOW

Author:  Jarhmander [ Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:11 am ]
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The front-end is especially bad-ass.

Author:  jpx72 [ Mon Oct 17, 2011 1:32 pm ]
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Working marvelously on my Famicom! Wonderful programme! I managed to exchange the cartridges in 10 out of 10 tries successfully!

Author:  LocalH [ Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:01 am ]
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Very impressive work, Chris. I especially love the graphical style choice you made of using fake "double-wide" pixels, looks quite reminiscent of the C64 and A8 machines. I could see this concept being useful on the MD, too - there's already a cable that connects to port 2 and allows dumping of carts, but requires a Sega CD to load the software from. A tool like this would mean that all one would need would be a (fairly cheap) EPROM cart with the dumper tool (or a flashcart, since the code would be revolving in RAM for one to switch carts), and an audio cable. Cart support (for dumping) would be greater in the first release than it was on the NES, as one banking system will cover all licensed carts, and support could be coded for some of the weird-ass pirate mappers that are out there. Drawbacks would include the much longer dumping time that carts upwards of 5MB would incur, but the audio response of the MD may be more favorable to the 5200bps speed than the NES.

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