Posted on December 3, 2011
Proyecto retro: Apple //c
Some time ago I wrote about retro game emulators for the Apple ][. Recently I started playing with the emulator, recalling the old days it appealed to me to buy an Apple / / c, the first Apple computer I had.
I browsed through eBay for a while and found from very well conserved apple//c’s to units painted green (yikes!). Some of them come with monitor, printer and all of the original items, there are even a couple in their original unopened boxes … incredible.
Then I talked to my old friend Diego, a veteran of the Apple II scene, told him about my project and he clarified some issues of owning a old computer, such as not much support or resources.
I have Not yet decided whether to buy one or not, as it is something that occupies space and is not very useful. However in my research, I found many interesting things:
The used software (original) sold on eBay is very expensive, not less than $30 per program.
The 5 1/4 floppy disks are easy to find, and not very expensive, about $1 per disc.
A scene of enthusiasts for these computers is very active and there are individuals that maintain and use these computers, there is a long reservoir called “Asimov” (ftp://ftp.apple.asimov.net/pub/apple_II/) where people have uploaded “images” of Apple Disks. You can find everything from original versions to “cracked” with even the pirates’ signatures.
The hardest thing of buying an Apple II this days is to get software, you have to buy old disks or create them again, meaning transfer program “images” back to physical disks.
At first I thought it would be a challenge, but after some searching I found enthusiast communities that are using serial cables and special programs such as Copy II Plus to recreate the floppy disks. After much reading, I found some shops and services specializing in Apple II, One of them, Retrofloppy offers transfer services and sell cables and specially a open source program, already on a 5 1/4 floppy, called ADT, specializing in original floppy transfers directly from a pc to the Apple II via serial cable, I think it saves time and effort.
After that I found something even more interesting: a hardware device called “Semi Virtual Diskette” (SVD) that emulates three floppy disks inserted into the Apple and other older systems by using a micro controller and some memory.
All this has encouraged me to buy an Apple //c, but I will not invest heavily in something that I can emulate. Anyway, I found all this information interesting and wanted to share with my readers.
Greetings and I hope your comments