Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Programmer

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Beji
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Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Programmer

Post by Beji » Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:11 pm

Hello there, kind of new to all of this.

I wanted to make a couple of repos and found the Kazoo hardware, which simplifies the whole process entirely. I picked up the programmer a month or so ago and managed to make a repo just fine without many issues.

I ordered a NES-SGROM board from them and recently got it, with the flash upgrade option; 256 PRG-ROM for CHR-RAM boards option. I got it in the mail today and followed the instructions as followed in the text file included via your site and made sure to erase the chips with the header option before installing anything. Well I burnt the file I needed (I only had the .bin file, no chr file with this one) and it burnt okay, but the cart refuses to boot up, I usually just get a yellow screen and on the off chance it did boot up, the screen was garbled and froze right away.

I tried to erase and re-burn the file, but the Kazoo keeps giving me an error-116, no matter what I try. Any ideas? Is there a chance that it's the PCB itself, like it's damaged or was made wrong?

Edit: I re-installed the Kazoo and now I've managed to get it to write the header, or what I assume it is, it tests okay and it installs and verifies that it wrote the header, but then the light goes from red to blank and when I try to go and write the 256kb .bin to the chip(s), it's still giving me a 116 error. I've looked around a little bit online and there's barely any information about this or the problems I am having online.

yogi
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by yogi » Mon Jan 06, 2014 7:57 pm

I'm not an expert, but I have seen the '116' after I do something incorrect :) Try to reboot the Kazzo to reset the firmware.
I ran into minor confusion with the wrong 'erase' header ( was the original Anago erase file) or when I had the boot loader switch wrong.
Do double check to make sure:
1. You have INL's firmware flashed to Kazzo if you'r using the INL GUI
2. BL switch to Run
3. INL Erase header for installed Flash size, LED will extinguish after erase. EDIT-Rather, PRG erase for a CHR ram board and PRG/CHR erase for a CHR flash board.
4. PRG/CHR file size same as Flash chips installed. 128K PRG for 128K Flash chip, or 256K PRG for a 256K Flash.
If there is an error at any point, reboot the Kazzo and start over. If I try to continue without, I get error 116. It might help to re-seat the board in the Kazzo connector, a little to the left or right, but with my INL boards they seem snug and don't shift. I have also found that my USB hub slowed things down and/or causes errors, try USB cable direct to PC.
I'm sure INL will give more insight, but maybe some of these points might help?
Yogi
Last edited by yogi on Tue Jan 07, 2014 2:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Beji
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by Beji » Mon Jan 06, 2014 11:20 pm

1. Not only did I try flashing it and trying the "old" software included with the archive, but I re-flashed it to work with INL GUI.
2. I think by default it's set to RUN, even if it wasn't, by re-flashing it twice and trying to burn, it's set to RUN, I double checked myself.
3. Okay that's good to know, because it does that. Thanks. The documentation for it is pretty sparse.
4. I am well aware that they need to be the same size and may need to be padded as necessary. In this case the ROM I am trying to burn only has a .PRG file, splitting it does not yeild a .CHR file.

I have been rebooting it each time I get an error and restarted. I have tried re-seating the PCB board multiple times. I am not using a USB hub, but a direct connection. At this point I am wondering if I was given the wrong size chips. My order says it should have been for MMC1: PRG-ROM: 256KB (for CHR-RAM boards). Is there any marking on the chips themselves to see the sizes? Would the software tell me the file is too big or just give me another error?

yogi
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by yogi » Tue Jan 07, 2014 9:45 am

OK the basics are covered, I know that all the above is covered in the read-me but sometimes restating helps.
To check the size of the flash chip: look for the rectangular chip marked with SST in large print; below that print you should see smaller print that reads 39SF020. this is the flash rom. The '020 is a 256K device; 010 would be a 128K and 040 would be a 512K.
Seeing how you have already flashed a different repo board, the Kazzo hardware should be good, as well as you software install. So this leaves either the flash board or a problem with the ROM file. Have you tested the ROM in a EMU? I assume yes, so you may want to PM INL.
Yogi
EDIT Just a thought, did you strip the header out of the ROM file, for just a .PRG bin file? Even though it has no CHR file embedded in the NES ROM, the header needs to be removed with Uconn64 or readNES.

Beji
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by Beji » Tue Jan 07, 2014 10:32 am

Okay so I checked the chip and it is indeed a 256K chip. I have tested the rom in a emulator and it works just fine with no issues. I read about stripping the header off the rom and did so, I am using software called NES Mapper, which shows information about the rom, compatible donor boards, allows you to strip the header and it splits the files for you as well.

The thing is I managed to burn the file once and the game would either refuse to boot up or when it did, it was all garbled graphics and would freeze, the board is letting me re-flash the header to erase the PRG as the text file calls for, but after that it's error 116 across the board.

Edit: I assume INL is the same as Paul who runs the site they sell from. I e-mailed them yesterday, but came here too, hoping for maybe a faster resolution. If I don't hear from them in a few days I'll send INL a message on here. I don't want to nag them too much, it just sucks when you get something in the mail and you can't get the *#&$er to work.

yogi
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by yogi » Tue Jan 07, 2014 2:00 pm

Beji wrote:Okay so I checked the chip and it is indeed a 256K chip. I have tested the rom in a emulator and it works just fine with no issues. I read about stripping the header off the rom and did so, I am using software called NES Mapper, which shows information about the rom, compatible donor boards, allows you to strip the header and it splits the files for you as well.
I'm unfamiliar with that program. I have used uconn64 from a command prompt and the PHP based web readNES
http://www.kevinselwyn.com/ReadNES/
You may try comparing the output from these to verify you have a good headerless PRG.bin with a hex editor like HxD.
Beji wrote:The thing is I managed to burn the file once and the game would either refuse to boot up or when it did, it was all garbled graphics and would freeze, the board is letting me re-flash the header to erase the PRG as the text file calls for, but after that it's error 116 across the board.
Not sure the meaning of '116' code so I can only guess, but when I was having problems it seemed like a general error with the Kazzo hardware. I would get another error code and if I retried without resetting I would get 116.
If you had a hint of the game's screens at one point, some code was flashed. The issue could be the hardware mangling the bits in some way or the bin file itself.
For hardware problems these are the things I look at first: make sure the edge connector is clean; all the handling of the bare board could cause issues. Are you confident about your NES' 72 pin connector?
Your NES' connector wouldn't have any impact with flashing the cart in the first place, but the cart edge would. If the PC software and AVR firmware are operating correct then the cart should work. The only issue I have had with the few boards I have flashed has been operator errors.
It's my understanding that INL tests his boards, so there is a lower probability of the error there, but it's not impossible. I can't speak for INL, but I believe he will do his best to help you. There is contact info in the readme that you may want to use.
Not sure what else I could add...
Yogi

Beji
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by Beji » Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:49 am

The 72 pin connector has been recently cleaned and boiled. every single game in my library plays without any hitch and without even pressing down upon.

To be honest the first rom I burnt to a PCB, I didn't bother stripping the header and it worked perfectly fine. I didn't even think of it until I read the text file after the second rom I tried to burn didn't work properly. I mean even in the guides for the standard procedure (soldering, donor carts, burning roms) it never mentions anything about stripping the header, just splitting the rom.

I mean, you can say it's user error, but I don't know what I am doing wrong. I stick the thingy in the thing, make sure the chips are erased and then try to burn the PRG file, all according to the text read me included with the software. I did it once without any issues so I don't know what I'd be doing wrong this time around.

I assumed the upgraded flash chips would allow me to re-flash the board as needed, maybe I am wrong. But I thought even old chips could be re-used several times by using a UV eraser to clear them.

It's most likely my fault, but with so little documentation on it, it's hard to even know what's going on. I am gonna wait till Friday and if I don't get a e-mail response through their site, I'll contact them here. The text file has a phone number, but honestly I don't want to call them up. That just seems rude.

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infiniteneslives
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by infiniteneslives » Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:15 am

Sorry for the slow response.

Doesn't sound like you're erasing the chip properly. You're getting indications of failed programming probably because the chip isn't erased.

Most people with issues recently have been trying to erase without selecting the header on the pull down.

readme cut for your specific needs.
2) ERASE your chips!!!! This is currently a very important step...
Failing to do this will most likely result in errors when trying to program.

a) Select 'header' as file type.
b) Click 'load' and navagate to the "ROMS" folder that's in
your kazoo folder.
c) Select the appropriate ERASE file:
-PRG: erases only the PRG-ROM. Good for development of
CPU code, or a board with CHR-RAM like SNROM,TNROM,UNROM. **AND SGROM! **
-PRGCHR: *wrong for SGROM*
-CHR: *wrong for SGROM*
d) Click 'Write'.

***IMPORTANT NOTES***

***Must get the 'Verify OK' message in the text field in the application.
If you don't, reconnect and try again.

***Failing to select proper ERASE file will cause issues also. Selecting
ERASE_PRGCHR for a board with CHR-RAM will fail to erase CHR causing errors.
select ERASE_PRG in this case. The software verifies that the flash
chip accepts the erase command.

***While the chip is erasing, you should see the LED dimly lit. Once
fully erased the light will go out. This is your signal that it's okay to
flash the board.
-NES INL-ROM v2 boards are super fast, you might not even see
the light. Or it may only flicker. That's okay.

***JUST MAKE SURE THE APP SAYS "Verify OK"*** If so then you're ready to flash!
This is what you should get:
Plug in kazzo
LED bright RED
click test
"Tesk OK" reported
select header
load ERASE_PRG.bin
write
instantly the LED should turn off
"Verify OK" displayed
Board is now erased.

Program PRG:
Select 256KB PRG in pulldown
load 256KB .prg/.bin file
write
watch green bar go across, or 'not responding' message normal.
once done "verify OK"
LED should NOT come on while programming, although sometimes it may flicker.
The light turns on while programming when a byte fails to program. It'll try again, but if it's not erased it'll always fail.

Let me know where things go arwy in all that.
If you're gonna play the Game Boy, you gotta learn to play it right. -Kenny Rogers

Beji
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by Beji » Wed Jan 08, 2014 11:52 am

Thanks for the response.

What you have listed is what I have been literally been trying to do. The entire erasing part goes exactly as you state it should, but as soon as I go to write the PRG file, I always error out. I have tried multiple files, I have tried files with stripped headers, I have tried resetting the programmer, re-installing the drivers, plugging and unplugging the hardware. I cannot get it to write the file.

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infiniteneslives
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by infiniteneslives » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:21 pm

I mean even in the guides for the standard procedure (soldering, donor carts, burning roms) it never mentions anything about stripping the header, just splitting the rom.
My readme mentions removing the header. See section 3: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/183 ... readme.txt
Well I burnt the file I needed (I only had the .bin file, no chr file with this one) and it burnt okay, but the cart refuses to boot up, I usually just get a yellow screen and on the off chance it did boot up, the screen was garbled and froze right away.

I tried to erase and re-burn the file, but the Kazoo keeps giving me an error-116, no matter what I try. Any ideas? Is there a chance that it's the PCB itself, like it's damaged or was made wrong?
The fact that it programmed fine the first time, but never again, tells me that it's not erased... Could be something else, but indications point to no erasure.

Can you 'erase it' then load the kazzo firmware, dump it with anago, and check the rom image to see if it's showing the cart's actually erased?
If you're gonna play the Game Boy, you gotta learn to play it right. -Kenny Rogers

Beji
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by Beji » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:45 pm

Let me be perfectly clear, I didn't imply that your text file did not suggest removing the header. I was actually saying a old guide for solder method from another site did not say anything about the header. Sorry for the confusion.

As far as doing what you've asked, I'll do it when I get home, as I'm at work right now, but looking at the anago software looks a tad confusing.

I'm also thinking about trying on another computer just to see what happens. Computers can be so fickle some times.

On a side note, have you considered updating the software for the flash chips to allow for a drag and drop interface, one that'd let you directly see what's on the chips like a more triditional flash drive or something?

Beji
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Re: Help with the Kazoo cartridge "INL Retro" Dumper-Program

Post by Beji » Thu Jan 09, 2014 1:03 am

I guess in the interest of keeping people informed who have been involved in this thread I decided to update it.

I tried using a different computer and it in fact worked differently. I wonder if something happened that caused different results?

I managed to erase the chips, although to be honest I did it several times in a row just to ensure I properly erased them. I burned a PRG to the chips and the game still came up garbled. I tried the online software recommended to strip the header out, still got the same results, I tried a different rom, and I got the same results, garbled graphics.

Now I will be the first to admit I am completely new to this sort of thing, but I did manage to make a repo that had a .PRG and .CHR file just fine, the first time through, since there is nothing to burn a .CHR file to, assumed that all I did was write the .PRG file and call it good, is there something else you have to do to files that lack both the .PRG and .CHR files?

All of my other games work, the 72 pin connector was recently scrubbed clean, bent pins and then boiled, so I doubt it's that and the pins on the PCB are in good shape too.

Paul went ahead and e-mailed me asking for close ups of the board, so I sent him some pics after work. I'll keep people updated on what's going on and if it gets resolved. Thanks for everyone that tried to help. :beer:

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