Technical help section


What this file contains

Hook-up help

Hook-up instructions, right out of the original owner's manual.

Port locations

Graphics from the original user's manual. These two pictures show where everything plugs into a real Vic20 computer.

Trouble shooting

Hints on how to hook up a real Vic20. This chart was originally in the user's manual that came with the Vic20.

Online Mini-FAQ

The top few Freqently Asked Vic20 Questions, answered.

Scanning tips

Some general tips on scanning things into an IBM compatible, by using a flatbed scanner.

Cart scanning tips

More image scanning tips, including a step-by-step way to make cart scans look really nice!

Memory bank test program

This is an ascii text file of a BASIC program I wrote. It is used to see whether RAM or ROM (or nothing) is plugged into a real Vic20. You can use it to play with and set the switches inside a RAM expander, or use it to help archive rom images.

Extending the life of older computers

This ascii text describes ways you can keep the operating parts of any of your older computers cooler, so that they last longer. (Someone else wrote it; I just think it is good information!)

Repairing bent pins on computer chips

A text I wrote, which talks about straightening bent IC legs, repairing broken ones, and so on.

Copying tapes

A hardware project you can do. This includes instructions and pictures telling you how to modify a standard Commodore C2N datasette so that it will allow you to make perfect, digital copies of your old software stored on cassette tapes.

The files below may be too large to view online.
You have to download them to your computer
to use them. (Click here if you need help on that.)

Tech:  X-1541 program

This 57k program is used to hook a real 1541 disk drive to an IBM computer, for transferring software back and forth between those two computers. Requires a special cable be assembled. Schematics are included with this program if you want to build your own, or pay someone to make one. (Sorry, but I can't offer you anything besides the program itself. I don't have the time or the inclination, and last but not least, I don't want any blame for hurting your hardware!)

Tech: Vic20 Cart Archiving info

This is one 88k zip file, containing four texts about technical subjects. It also includes two related utility programs. Besides pinout diagrams and general Vic20 cartridge port info, this also explains cartridge archiving methods.

Tech: Adding load addresses to ROM images

This 40k zip file contains a utility program for the IBM which reads a "raw" image file (one with no load address info in it) and then makes a second copy of it which contains that info. This allows raw ROM images sometimes found on the I'net to easily work with emulators or real Vic20's. Includes docs, source code.

Tech: compare two binary files

This 27k zip file contains a utility program Ward wrote for IBM compatible machines. The program compares two files and tells you how many bytes do not match perfectly, and where they do not match. Very useful for comparing two binary files, such as ROM images.

Permission is granted to anyone wishing to spread any of Ward's information further.
Upload it to another site, send it to friends, whatever. Just be nice about it.
In other words, give any authors full credit for whatever work they did, ok?

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