VintageWare > Apple II > The CP/M CARD > Overview and Update Notes













CP/M 3.01C is Advanced Logic Systems' latest release of CP/M Plus for the CP/M Card. It allows the user to take advantage of a Profile compatible hard disk, a RAM disk and ProDOS compatible clock cards.

All I/O to the hard disk is accomplished by making calls to ProDOS. This means that CP/M and ProDOS can share the hard disk resource. ProDOS remains in memory while CP/M is running. This means that the user is able to jump between CP/M and ProDOS as desired. This release of the ALS BIOS will support 5 or 10 megabyte hard disks. Only one logical volume per hard disk is supported. The Apple host adapter must be installed in slot 5 and an Apple or Apple compatible floppy disk controller must be installed in slot 6. Support is also supplied for the Catalyst menu package by QUARK. CP/M applications may be called directly from the Catalyst menu.

When CP/M boots up it looks for a ProDOS volume called /RAM. When it finds /RAM, a file called SYSTEM will be opened. It assumes SYSTEM is the environment for a 60K RAM disk. A utility called INITRAM is supplied to set up and initialize this RAM disk. Once the RAM disk has been set up and initialized, any files placed there will remain intact until the Apple is turned off or reset. Therefore, you may go into CP/M, set up the RAM disk, copy files to it, go back to ProDOS and your files will still be intact.

A utility called DATESET is supplied to read the ProDOS date and time and set the CP/M date and time. The date and time are only reset when the utility is run so variations in time may occur.

Hard Disk Installation Procedure

The controller or host adapter for the hard disk must be installed in slot 5 of the Apple. To install CP/M on your hard disk, follow the manufacturer's instructions for installing ProDOS. When ProDOS has been properly installed, simply place the diskette marked /BOOT in the first floppy drive and turn on the Apple. A message will appear informing you that CP/M has not been installed on the hard disk. It will ask if you would like to install it at this time. If you answer NO the boot program will try to boot up CP/M from the floppy disk. This system has RAM disk and clock support but no hard disk support. If you answer YES, you will be asked to insert the install diskette and press RETURN. The install disk is labeled /CPMBOOT. A directory called CPM will be created on the root directory of the hard disk and the CP/M files will be copied to it. These files must never be written to or destroyed as CP/M will not function without them and data may be lost. After the files have been copied to the hard disk, you will be asked for the prefix of the directory from which you wish to run the next program. Type the name of your hard disk volume followed by /CPM. For instance, if the name of your hard disk volume is /P, you would then type /P/CPM. You will then be asked for the name of the program to be run. Type CPM3.SYSTEM. This is the CP/M boot program. After some activity on the hard disk, you should get the CP/M sign-on on the screen and the ALS HELLO program will execute automatically. You will find several files already on your CP/M directory. These files should not be overwritten. Some of them are standard CP/M utilities such as SUBMIT.COM, SETDEF.COM, DATE.COM and PIP.COM. Others such as QUIT.COM are special utilities for use with CP/M and ProDOS. You will find the ProDOS utilities on the back of the CP/M diskette labeled #3.



APPMAKER.SUB is a submit file that replaces the APPMAKER.COM file available in earlier releases. APPMAKER.SUB gives the user the flexibility of specifying which files are to be copied to his application diskette. To use APPMAKER.SUB, place the diskette that contains: SUBMIT.COM, APPMAKER.SUB, DSKCOPY, PIP.COM and any other files to be copied to the application disk in Drive 1. Place a blank diskette to be copied onto in the second drive. Type SUBMIT APPMAKER after the A> prompt. The diskette in the second drive will be formatted and the files specified in APPMAKER.SUB will be copied onto it. APPMAKER.SUB may be altered by using ED.COM or another editor or word processor.

Drive assignments assume the default. The defaults may be changed using FLIP.COM.


CATALYST.COM is a utility to be used in conjunction with the ProDOS hard disk menu package CATALYST //e by Quark. It will pick up the name of a program passed from the CATALYST menu and execute it. One would generally include a reference to CATALYST as the last statement in PROFILE.SUB. This reference causes the program selected from the CATALYST menu to execute when CP/M Plus is booted up. Therefore you can execute a different program each time you enter CP/M without ever changing the PROFILE.SUB file. Reference page 3-9 in the CATALYST //e manual for a description of how program names may be passed. The name of the interpreter to be executed is CPM/CPM3.SYSTEM.


CONVERT.COM is a utility that converts files from ProDOS to CP/M Plus or from CP/M Plus to ProDOS. It also allows you to change the ProDOS directory prefix and to generate a catalog listing of the ProDOS directory.

To execute CONVERT.COM, type CONVERT at the A> prompt. The display will indicate the following:

CP/M -> ProDOS File Conversion
This indicates that the direction of transfer is initially set up to convert CP/M to ProDOS. This may be changed by using the T option as explained below.

Prefix /P/CPM
This display may be different on your system if you have a hard disk and have not changed the prefix with the P option as explained below. Generally a "/" followed by the name of the ProDOS volume that CP/M was booted from should be displayed after the word "Prefix". Then a "/" and "CPM". "CPM" is the ProDOS subdirectory that CPM was loaded from.

Below this header information are listed the options that may be chosen for CONVERT. These options are as follows:

P - Set ProDOS prefix
This option allows the user to change the ProDOS prefix. Changing the Prefix allows files to be transferred to and from different volumes and subdirectories. This also controls which directories are displayed with the C option as explained below.

C - Catalog display
This option causes CONVERT to display the catalog for the current volume and subdirectory as selected with the P option.

D - Change Direction of Transfer
This option causes CONVERT to change the direction in which the files are being transferred while using the T option. It also provides a header display that reflects the current direction of transfer.

T - Transfer Files to ProDOS (or to CP/M)
This option allows you to enter the name of a ProDOS file to be transferred to CP/M or, depending on the direction of transfer, from CP/M to ProDOS. In either case, CONVERT will prompt for "Input file:". This is either the pathname of a ProDOS file or a CP/M filename (depending on the currently selected direction of transfer). CONVERT will then prompt for "Output file:". This is either the pathname of a ProDOS file or a CP/M filename. In either case, the filename must obey the rules of the system that you are transferring to and from. Finally, CONVERT will ask "Is it text?" This lets CONVERT know how to treat carriage return/line feed sequences, end-of-files, and, for ProDOS, the file type. Just answer Y or N. CONVERT will continue to prompt for files to be transferred until you enter a null line (a carriage return).

Q - Quit
This option exits to CP/M


This utility sets the CP/M date and time from the current ProDOS date and time. If the ProDOS date and time have not been set, DATESET will attempt to execute DATE.COM to set the date and time. It is suggested that a reference to DATESET be included in PROFILE.SUB, particularly if there is a ProDOS compatible clock card installed. CP/M time can be kept accurate by occasionally executing DATESET from the A> prompt.


This utility searches for a ProDOS volume called /RAM. When it finds /RAM, a file called SYSTEM will be created on the current volume and a CP/M directory will be initialized in it. This volume then becomes a 60K RAM disk referenced as D: on the hard disk system and as E: on the floppy system. Once the RAM disk has been initialized, any files placed there will remain intact until the computer is turned off or reset. Therefore, you may initialize a RAM disk with /RAM, copy files to it, return to ProDOS, go back to CP/M and your files will still be intact.

When CP/M boots, it looks for /RAM/SYSTEM and when it finds it, accepts the RAM disk as one of its volumes as described above. INITRAM need only be executed once to set up the RAM disk. After that, CP/M will accept it each time it boots. Remember that turning off the power or resetting the Apple will destroy the RAM disk and you must execute INITRAM the first time CP/M is booted.

VintageWare > Apple II > The CP/M CARD > Overview and Update Notes