DriveWire FAQ

Q. What is DriveWire?

A. DriveWire is a product that allows your CoCo (under Disk BASIC or NitrOS-9) to utilize a PC hard drive in place of a real floppy or hard drive. It consists of an RBF driver for NitrOS-9, a special version of HDB-DOS for Disk BASIC, and server software for the Mac and Windows platforms.

Q. How does the CoCo connect to the server?

A. The CoCo connects to the server via a serial cable. One end of the cable plugs into the CoCo's built-in RS-232 port (also known as the bitbanger port). The other end of the cable plugs into a DB-9 serial port on the server.

Q. How fast is the transfer rate?

A. On a CoCo 3, the serial connection runs at a constant 57,600 bits per second. The speed and performance of DriveWire is close to what a floppy drive system would provide. On a CoCo 1 or 2, we've achieved a nominal bit rate of 38,400 bits per second.

Q. I thought the bitbanger was slow?

A. As a matter of course, the bitbanger can only achieve 1200-2400 bps. However, we've employed a few software tricks to bump that speed up significantly, mostly through tight coding and careful masking of interrupts at certain points in the driver.

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