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Reconstructing an out of print Commodore 4040 disk drive book #Commodore #VintageComputing #RetroComputing #Publishing

The Commodore 4040 is a dual-drive 5¼” floppy disk subsystem for Commodore International computers. It uses a wide-case form, and uses the parallel IEEE-488 interface..

Back in 1988, Hilaire Gagne wrote a comprehensive book about the Commodore 4040 and the beginnings of Commodore DOS titled Anatomy of the 4040 Disk Drive. The book covers file management, data management disk management, file organization, advanced disk programming, hardware and software interfacing, RAM and ROM disassembly, and application examples. The book has long since been out of print. The book was written with an unknown word processor, probably on a Commodore PET.

The original book source word processing files turned up recently as part of the estate of Dennis Jarvis.

Michael Steil has taken the source files and created conversion code in Python which has done a good job converting the original files to HTML.

You can now view the original book HTML as well as source files and conversion work on Michael’s GitHub repository.

Here are some links on this work:

Michael also has a repository, cbmsrc, which contains “Original source code of various Commodore computers and peripherals”

  • BASIC_C64
  • KERNAL_C64_01
  • KERNAL_C64_03
  • BASIC_C128, KERNAL_C128_0{3|5|6},
  • EDITOR_C128
  • BASIC_PET2001
  • BASIC_CBM2_{A|B}
  • DOS_4040
  • DOS_8250
  • DOS_8070
  • DOS_D9065
  • DOS_1540
  • DOS_1541_0{1|2|3|5|6}, DOS_1541C_0{1|2|3}
  • DOS_1571
  • DOS_1581

Are you a Commodore fan? Let us know in the comments below.

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