Nova (VME)

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(Diesen Text habe ich erstmal ganz frech von verschiedenen Quellen geklaut. So nach und nach werde ich den ins deutsch übersetzen)

Nova graphic cards on TT

The Nova Graphic Card is a VME adapter to ISA connect. The one that I have is a VME to 16 bits ISA connect. There graphics card that comes with it is in several favours - these can be the Tseng ET4000 series or the ATI MACH series. As I have a Tseng card, the tips will be concentrated on the Tseng chipset graphics cards, on the TT.

The Graphic chipset

Hw-et4000w32.jpg
Eine ET4000/W32 Karte

There are at least 2 types of Tseng graphics cards (may be more but I only know of 2) - the ET4000 and the ET4000/W32. They need to use different Nova drivers. In additional, different drivers are needed for differnt type of Atari 16 bit machines.

The key is to be able to identify the chipset - you can either read it off the chipset name or identify the amount of Video RAM the graphic card is able to take. The ET4000 graphic chip is able to address 1 MB of video RAM.

The ET4000/W32 graphic chip is able to address up to 4 MB of video RAM. The picture shows a ET4000/W32 graphic card because it is able to take 2 MB of video RAM, however only 1 MB is currently populated

Jumper setting on the Nova VME board

The jumper must be set to MSTE. If it is set to TT, there will be a blank video output on to your monitor.

AUTO folder sequence

The programs to be copied into the Auto folder in the following order:

1. EMULATOR.PRG This program will switch the video output to the VGA graphic adapter. It will put the VGA output as low resolution and in mono.
2. MENU.PRG This program makes the selection of video resolution for normal use among other selections. This is a text based selection. There is another XMENU which seems to be a GEM based program.
3. STA_VDI.PRG This program is the Nova VDI, which understands the higher resolutions and higher colour modes.

MENU configurations

It is important to make the configuration for the Nova VDI by using the MENU.PRG. To force the MENU program to run, just remove the MENU.INF file, and run from the desktop. The program can be run from the standard Atari screen (ie the Nova need not to be running to run this program).

1. Select the reolution for the desktop A list of screen resolutions will be available for selection. Select the one that suit you most. Take note of the display refresh rate, as selecting one that is outside your monitor will force your monitor to complain. The resolutions are taken from STA_VDI.BIB file.
2. Select the VDI output There is a possibility to select the output to either the standard atari VDI output or the Nova VDI output. The Nova VDI output is called VGA.
  • Select either VGA with or without GDOS will force the use of the Nova VDI.
  • Select either Atari standard with or without GDOS will force the use of normal Atari VDI.

Note: Default seems to be the Atari standard which does not understand the higher resolutions and colours. This forces the video output to be low resolution and in mono.

3. Select the menu display method If the MENU.INF file is found, the MENU.PRG will silently not display the menu.You select the method to force the menu to be display -- by different key presses or display by seconds.
4. Enter name of the GDOS program Normally this will be GDOS.PRG, NVDI.PRG or SPDGDOS.PRG. May be others out there but I do not know.
5. Save the settings. This produces the MENU.INF file.

That's It.

On your next reboot, the high resolution and high colours should be on your monitor.

Special thanks to Gerhard Huber of Computerinsel GmbH, who provide much inputs and the drivers for setting up the Nova on my TT.

Have Fun!!

NOVA VDI

Q4: NVDI does not boot with the NOVA VDI

A: Three conditions are required for this to work: You need the NOVA VDI v2.61 or later All NVDIDRV?.SYS must be disabled (change their extensions to ".SYX") The AUTO folder order must be: EMULATOR.PRG, STA_VDI.PRG, MENU.PRG, NVDI.PRG, WDIALOG.PRG.

Q5: The combination NVDI + NOVA VDI + MagiC does not boot. But it does work without MagiC.

A: Check the following:The AUTO folder order must be maintained as in Q4; use AUTOEXEC.BAT if nescessary. The line #_DEV must be present to get "meaningful" results; for example: #_DEV 4 0

Q26:Using Jinnee on a NOVA graphic card tranparent moving of icons does not work.

A: In the NVDI 5 version dated before 1/6/98 could not detect the presence of raster functions on the NOVA card. Use a version of NVDI5 dated 1/6/98 (or later).

Q27: Jinnee notes are not transparent when moved on a system with a NOVA graphic card (a white block is being movewd instead).

A: NVDI had problems with OffScreenbitmaps, that were derived from the NOVA display driver (when a defined format is passed, as in Papillon 3, no problems). This problem occurred in combination with NOVA cards, Jinnee, CAB and the Calamus module FRANKLIN. Update to a NVDI 5 dated 28/6/98 (or later) if you have this problem.