DISCiPLE

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The DISCiPLE is a floppy disk, joystick, printer, and Sinclair Network interface that was produced by Miles Gordon Technology.

DISCiPLE uses the WD1770 FDC chip.

MGT later went on to produce the +D, which shares the same filesystem but requires G+DOS instead of GDOS, and the SAM Coupé, a somewhat Spectrum-compatible computer with a similar disk interface and an extension of the GDOS/G+DOS filesystem, and uses SAMDOS.

Snapshot bug

Snapshots saved or loaded by GDOS are corrupted, in that the Z80's AF' register is neither saved nor restored.

GDOS's contains the following code for saving the Z80's state, before saving of a snapshot:

EXX       ; Save the alternate register set
PUSH AF
PUSH HL
PUSH BC
PUSH DE

The following code is used when restoring the Z80's state, after loading of a snapshot.

POP  DE   ; Restore the alternate register set
POP  BC
POP  HL
POP  AF
EXX

The issue here is that EXX only exchanges the BC, DE and HL registers with the shadow registers BC', DE' and HL'. It does not exchange AF and AF', and to do that, a separate instruction, EX AF,AF' is required.

This bug was later fixed by MGT for the +D, in G+DOS. The bug is similarly absent from the Messenger, a product by SAMCo (formed on the assets of MGT after it went into receivership) for transferring Spectrum snapshots to/from a SAM Coupé — both in the shadow ROM for the Spectrum, and in the companion software that runs on the Coupé.

Replacement Parts

Buttons:

  • Inhibit button: Alps Alpine SPUJ SPUJ190900/SPUJ191000 (latching)
  • Snapshot button: Alps Alpine SPUJ SPUJ191500/SPUJ191900 (momentry)
  • Button caps: Alps Alpine Black Modular Switch Cap, for use with SPPJ3 Series, Part No. UJ206022 Dimensions 5 x 4.6 x 9mm

To replace the printer and floppy connectors you will need to use pin headers with thin legs as the holes on the PCB are too small to accept full size header pins such as:

  • Harting, SEK 18, 34 Way, 2 Row, Right Angle PCB Header. Part No.: 09185346323
  • Harting, SEK 18, 26 Way, 2 Row, Right Angle PCB Header. Part No.: 09185267323

External links