HEPAX, etc.

All plugins for the HP41

HEPAX, etc.

Postby ScottJ » Sun Mar 07, 2021 2:57 pm

After working with an emulator (I41CX+) while my 41 was dead, I really got a kick out of playing with the Advanced HEPAX module. It's a terribly cool thing. And I’ve also read a lot about the NoVRAM ovules from a guy named Diego that are way, way, WAY cooler (but there are no cool emulations to play with.

I was shocked when an eBay search for “HEPAX” turned up NOTHING calculator-related. I searched a few more times for clonix, novram, NOTHING. Wow.

So now I am desperate for a NoVRAM 64, or a 32, or a HEPAX if that's all I can find. I would love to be able to load virtual modules via a programmer like the one that apparently comes with the NoVRAM. And the non-volatility of the NOVRAM would make the storage / file system something I could use with confidence.

So where do I get one? Is eBay no longer the prime place to look for HP-41 stuff? If so, then WHERE is the good and popular place to buy and sell stuff for my favorite calculator? This is probably going to cost me more than most of my actual calculators, so it may take me some time to shuffle money around to get what I really want (NoVRAM-64) but I will probably pursue something smaller if I can find it at an affordable price, just to get started with the fun.

Bear in mind that I have little or no interest in synthetic or M-code programming. It's mainly the virtual ROMs and the nom-volatile HEPAX-type file system that interests me.
ScottJ
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby rprosperi » Sun Mar 07, 2021 3:12 pm

Most answers can be found here, Diego's site, where you can order the latest module for using HEPAX, the NoVRAM-64d.

https://www.clonix41.org/

This module comes loaded with the HEPAX ROM image, but you can also install other modules as well.

It's a bit of a learning curve, but with patience you can get it running without a lot of work.

Also, the DM41X from SwissMicros is a modern 41CX clone which is much faster, has a huge scree plus with many enhancements, which lets you easily install any module you like, including HEPAX, and manage them right in the device itself, without having to learn how to update the NoVRAM, etc.

https://www.swissmicros.com/product/dm41x

Finally, the 41CL from Monte Dalrymple is the ultimate enhancement if you want to retain your original 41 device, as it replaces the original CPU with a modern replacement, which also lets you install any module, HEPAX included, etc.

http://www.systemyde.com/hp41/

Lots of reading, but you'll enjoy it all.

Good luck!
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby Garth » Sun Mar 07, 2021 7:36 pm

When I looked into the NoV32 and 64 a few years ago, I had already concluded that I won't be doing any MCode, partly because of Angel's several outstanding modules; so Diego suggested I save a little money and get the Clonix-D instead, which I did end up getting. Now my 41cx's CAT2 shows the following (shown through the HP92198 HP-IL 80-column video interface):
CAT2_12-12-17.jpg

so it's like having a dozen modules in it, and the 41's memory map is full except for 4K which is not enough for the next module I'd like to load in which would take 8K. Not shown is the double EXTended MEMory module.

I really want to hold onto the HP-IL and Extended I/O though which is why I'm not going for the SwissMicros unit. I've used HP-IL, through the HP82169A HPIL-to-IEEE488 and FSI164A (almost the same thing as the HP82164A but with an extra RS-232 channel) HPIL-to-RS232 interface converters to interface to lots of lab equipment on the workbench, many pieces of equipment at the same time. I also have the HP82165A HPIL-to-parallel interface converter, but have not used it yet. It's a recent eBay acquisition, unlike the others I bought in the 1980's.

If you don't need the interfaceability though, the SwissMicros unit is something like 200 times as fast as the original. Monte's 41CL transplant board is supposedly up to 50x as fast as the original, and comes with over 300 modules already installed (but I don't think they can all be accessed at once, since the memory map doesn't allow it, and many of the identifiers would be duplicated anyway, so you have to swap them out as needed). The 41CL goes into a Coconut 41 though, not the later Halfnuts. The easiest way to tell the difference between a Coconut and the Halfnut is that the Coconut's LCD has square corners, whereas the Halfnut's LCD has rounded corners. Mine is a Halfnut, so I can't put the 41CL transplant board in it. (Most users refer to the early 41's as "Fullnuts;" but note that HP's internal code name for the 41 was "Coconut," and they never had anything internally code named "Fullnut." Calling it the "Fullnut" is like calling Howard Hughes' H-4 Hercules the "Spruce Goose," a term coined by the critics, and Howard Hughes hated it (and there wasn't any spruce in it anyway, and it was made almost entirely of birch). It was very much a dishonor to Howard Hughes.
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby ScottJ » Fri Mar 12, 2021 7:30 pm

I went to the clonix site mentioned above, but it's pretty sparsely maintained and parts of it look about 10 years old. I can't tell what's current, and as far as I can tell there is no ordering mechanism or pricing information anywhere ... or if it's there, it's buried too deeply for me to find it.

Is there contact information for this fellow so that I can (a) find out what I need, and (b) find out how much it'll cost me and how much lead time to expect? If I've got to splurge big it'll take me a while to get funds together, but I need both the storage and the ability to use the burner/reader to move things on and off the calculator. I got spoiled by i41cx+ and I have lots of stuff I'd love to move over ot the real hardware.

Thanks!
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby ScottJ » Fri Mar 12, 2021 7:32 pm

Garth wrote:Mine is a Halfnut, so I can't put the 41CL transplant board in it. (Most users refer to the early 41's as "Fullnuts;" but note that HP's internal code name for the 41 was "Coconut," and they never had anything internally code named "Fullnut." Calling it the "Fullnut" is like calling Howard Hughes' H-4 Hercules the "Spruce Goose," a term coined by the critics, and Howard Hughes hated it (and there wasn't any spruce in it anyway, and it was made almost entirely of birch). It was very much a dishonor to Howard Hughes.


I am in the same boat ... both my 41cx that recently died the ugly death AND my new one my wife bought me to replace it are Halfnuts.
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby rprosperi » Sat Mar 13, 2021 3:36 am

The email address to contact the author, Diego Diaz, can be seen clicking the "Mailto: clonix41" button on the lower right of the front page.

The site is definitely dated, but the latest module that will support HEPAX (IIRC, you wanted that) is the NoV-64d. This module can act as both ROM and RAM and lets you install multiple ROM images, but also HEPAX with multiple pages of upper RAM configured as HRAM (HEPAX RAM). The prices fluctuate, but simply email Diego and let him know what you want to do and he can let you know the best/cheapest module that will meet your needs. For example the CLONIX-D module is cheaper and will let you install several ROM modules, but it does not support HEPAX, so would not meet your needs.

Diego is a very friendly, easy to work with guy, that has been selling and supporting these modules for well over 10 years. You can definitely trust his judgement and advice, he won't steer you wrong or sell you something you don't need. Once you have selected the item that's right, you can safely pay him with PayPal and he'll ship you the items promptly. I don't believe he has been badly affected by COVID-19 backlog, and typically can ship items within a few days of ordering.

Also, you can download the .zip file and explore the software tools and user manuals - click the "Latest SW Update 20201016 (ClonixConfig v.6.1)" link on the home page. The manuals are certainly technical, but don't let them fool you into thinking these tools are difficult to use; Diego provides a program that makes configuring a CLONIX or NoV module with several ROMs very easy using a point-and-click interface.

Please contact Diego and let us know how it turns out.
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby ScottJ » Tue Mar 16, 2021 2:31 pm

I don't necessarily have to have HEPAX per se ... I understand the NoVRAM modules have a different filesystem similar to HEPAX and that's fine.

I sent an e-mail to Diego. We'll see what he recommends.Thanks!
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby pcscote » Thu Mar 18, 2021 1:28 pm

Hello Scott,
I suggest that you look at the presentation on Diego's modules that I have done for HHC/HPCC 2020 virtual conference. HERE
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby floppy_stuttgart » Tue Jun 08, 2021 5:28 pm

ScottJ wrote:I sent an e-mail to Diego. We'll see what he recommends.Thanks!

where can Diego be reached? I tried at sulaco2000@hotmail.com but no answer.
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Re: HEPAX, etc.

Postby Garth » Tue Jun 08, 2021 8:55 pm

where can Diego be reached? I tried at sulaco2000@hotmail.com but no answer.

clonix41 at gmail daught com
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