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ZCN 1.4, CP/M for the Amstrad Notepad NC100, NC150 and NC200 by Russell Marks


After having released a new version of his Amstrad Notepad NC100, NC150 and NC200 emulator, Russell Marks has just released a new version of his version of CP/M for these same machines : ZCN 1.4, the new features are :

  • NC150 support, with a custom zcn150.bin kernel. As with the NC200, this is not as complete as the NC100 support. Also, it has only been tested under emulation
  • Internal ramdisk support on NC200 and NC150, so you can use ZCN on them without a memory card (to some limited degree). This is really only intended to be used if you lack a memory card - you switch between memory card mode and ramdisk mode using the "ramd" command
  • Improved keyboard layout support via keyb, supporting Danish, French, German, Italian, Swedish, and US keyboard layouts, in addition to the old UK and Dvorak. All supported keyboard layouts can be used on any NC model
  • Preinstalled memory card images for NC100/NC150/NC200. These are intended for use with emulators like nc100em/MAME/RC2014, but they should also work on the real thing if you have the means to write them correctly. (Serial link installs are still supported, of course.)
  • Support for booting from floppy disk on the NC200 - this uses David Given's floppy-boot code from FUZIX, almost unchanged. ZCN itself does not support the floppy disk, so this just loads ZCN and a small ramdisk image then boots it
  • Support for displaying some non-ASCII characters, specifically some from the old DOS code pages 437 and 850 like in the ROM software, as well as the euro sign character from 858. Only a few dozen characters are supported (!) and you need to run keyb beforehand (i.e. since boot) for this to work
  • NC200 time-reading and time-setting support, meaning that e.g. time and timeset work
  • The man command now uses ZX0 compression - the data file is smaller, is smaller, and man pages load faster
  • Certain .com files in the support directory, like QTERM, are now also provided in versions using ZX0 compression. So for example, the ZX0-using version of QTERM is 5k smaller. ZCN comes with a "zx0com.bin" file you can prepend to a .zx0 file to run it in this way (limited to .zx0 files of 16k or less)

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