Gotek USB floppy emulator

If you want to ask questions about how the machine works, peculiar details, the differences between models, here it is !
How to program the oric hardware (VIA, FDC, ...) is also welcome.
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Steve M
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Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by Steve M » Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:54 pm

Us anyone using one of these Gotek drives with the Oric?

I'm wondering if they are worth buying adn if they will work OK with Oric Dsk images or if the files have to be converted like I think the Hxc floppy emulator requires. (If I've got the name right.)

Any info on these?

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Dbug
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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by Dbug » Wed Sep 19, 2018 7:55 pm

No idea, but you may want to fix the post title, is it "gotel" or "gotek" ?

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Chema
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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by Chema » Wed Sep 19, 2018 9:09 pm

I know people who use the Gotek with the FlashFloppy or HxC firmware with their Microdisc controllers and they work perectly.

Oric's dsk format is not supported yet, so you need to convert it to HxC format, but that is all.

You can get a Gotek flashed with the correct firmware and a nice Oled screen for easy selection of the image here
https://www.micomputer.es/es/gotek/326- ... rum-3.html

The vendor has an Oric, and uses a Gotek with it, in addition of real floppy drives.

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iss
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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by iss » Thu Sep 20, 2018 8:15 am

I'm using Gotek emulator since long time and it works perfect.
I've tested it with Microdisc controllers (the original one, Silicebit's and jorodr's) and Cumana - no problems at all.
The native firmware is very limited - it's should support MsDos IMG and Amiga ADF file formats but to make it work is pain, so simply ignore it.
Then you have 2 options (as Chema already said) HxC and FlashFloppy.
You can buy ready re-flashed Gotek emulator - there are many on Ebay and on other sites - just check the prices carefully.
You can go the DIY-way - buy Gotek from China (white or black links are just an example) for ~20.00USD and one USB-to-TTL converter for ~2.00USD more. On Internet you can find lot info how to do re-flash.

For HxC firmware - you have to pay 10.00 EUR.

I recommend the FlashFloppy firmware it's absolutely free, open source and has regular updates (once flashed the updates can be made directly from the USB-stick).

Both (FlashFloppy and HxC) do not support directly Oric DSK file format. In my opinion the best is to convert DSK to HFE - it works flawless!
I expect Oric DSK format to be added to FlashFloppy very soon (I'm ready to do it but need some free time)!

BTW, I have 2 Gotek drives and this weekend will make them FlashFloppies, so stay tuned - you will see how to add more extras like OLED, buzzer and extra button! :)

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Steve M
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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by Steve M » Thu Sep 20, 2018 11:53 pm

Thanks for the info.

So can you write files to the floppy emulator and then convert them back to Oric /dsk images ?

This is the one I was looking at.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/SFR1M44-U100 ... 1438.l2649

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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by Steve M » Thu Sep 20, 2018 11:57 pm

Dbug wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 7:55 pm
No idea, but you may want to fix the post title, is it "gotel" or "gotek" ?
Sorry - my keyboard is so old it has a lot of the letters worn off. It doesn't help that my typing is crap!

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iss
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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by iss » Fri Sep 21, 2018 8:13 am

The Gotek from your eBay link is OK to be updated with FlashFloppy or HxC firmware.
Mine is exactly the same and I will follow step-by-step this nice FlashFloppy HowTo.
Steve M wrote:
Thu Sep 20, 2018 11:53 pm
So can you write files to the floppy emulator and then convert them back to Oric /dsk images ?
With this question you hit the only problem I found i.e. converting HFE back to Oric DSK. Unfortunately there is no such tool available yet which can do this - all converters (HxC, Samdisk, etc.) can only import Oric DSK but they can't export it. This was the case when I decided to create a DSK image (to be used with Oricutron) from real disk. To solve this firstly I used the HxC utility to convert the HFE to RAW format, then I wrote a small utility which with help of FloppyBuilder create proper OricDSK image. This is bit inconvenient but I really needed it just once. Of course if there is more interest we can make such utility for direct conversation HFE to Oric DSK. But as I already said it's better to add Oric DSK support directly in FlashFloppy.

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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by NekoNoNiaow » Tue Oct 02, 2018 6:01 am

How does one change disks with a Gotek exactly? Using buttons and the 8 segment counter display?
I find the idea generally interesting but if one has to remember the numbers of all their disks I must admit I do not feel very motivated to even test it.

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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by iss » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:18 am

Yes, with buttons you change the selection and the image number is displayed on the 7-segment LCD.
This is the concept used in all such emulators and the image files have to be named in a special way (i.e. DSK0001.HFE etc.). The problem is actually when you have lot of images in the USB-stick. That's why "upgrading" the LCD with OLED display is really nice and useful mod - you can name the files by your wish. Additionally for bigger number of images it's good idea to use a rotary switch then you can "scroll" and select images faster.

(I'll post images and info when I found some free time to convert my emulators as promised above.)

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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by NekoNoNiaow » Thu Oct 25, 2018 3:23 am

iss wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:18 am
Yes, with buttons you change the selection and the image number is displayed on the 7-segment LCD.
This is the concept used in all such emulators and the image files have to be named in a special way (i.e. DSK0001.HFE etc.). The problem is actually when you have lot of images in the USB-stick. That's why "upgrading" the LCD with OLED display is really nice and useful mod - you can name the files by your wish. Additionally for bigger number of images it's good idea to use a rotary switch then you can "scroll" and select images faster.
Ok, thanks for the precision!

I have to say that I still find that quite tedious and I am admirative that you can endure the experience. ;)

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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by Chema » Thu Oct 25, 2018 10:19 am

That is why there are some systems which offer a custom loader program with a menu of the USB contents and a way to navigate.

Anyway the OLED solution is much more elegant and general. That is why I suggested it.

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Re: Gotek USB floppy emulator

Post by iss » Sat Oct 27, 2018 4:02 pm

As promised, here are pics from transformation of a Gotek drive into FlashFloppy.
Before:
gotek.jpg
After:
flashfloppy.jpg
- Firmware updated
- Red LED made visible
- OLED display installed
- Buzzer installed
- 3rd button installed for Eject/Load image
Full step-by-step guide here: FlashFloppy HowTo.

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