Questions from a newbie

From: Jordi Delgado (
Date: 2005-01-27 18:53:53


First of all let me say I am definitely NOT a CBM hacker.
I subscribed to this list since some days ago
I purchased a CBM 8296 with a double-disk drive
CBM 8250 in good working condition. 
And, though I've had lots of computers (mainly z80
based and the usual Wintel machines), I've never had a 
commodore. However, the 8296 is one of the most beautiful
machines I've ever seen!

Thus, I would like to know more about this machine. If you
do not mind, I will list some questions. If some (or all)
of the questions are too elementary for this list, please,
accept my apologies and I'll try to find this info somewhere

- After turning the machine on, it says that it has 32k available.
But there are webpages that say that the memory in the 8296
amounts to 128k. Are the 32k available only to BASIC and the rest
of the memory to machine language (of course, I know only 64k can be 
addressed by a MOS6502, but I assume some banking mechanism)?
or the 128k were an upgrade to the basic configuration?
I've not opened the 8296 (yet), so I don't know if my machine
has 128k.

- I would like to program the 8296 in assembly language,
using the 8296 (not a cross-development system). Is this
possible? I am used to the typical edit-compile-run-crash-...
cycle but that assumes the existence of an editor, 
an assembler, etc. What editors and assemblers are the most used
in the 8296? Are they available on the web? I've located some
sites with software for PET but I did not find any editor or

- Perhaps the above mentioned cycle does not apply to CBM8296
programming. Then, how do you program in assembly? Do you need
an assembler written in BASIC?, how do you create source files
if not with an editor?

- Finally, let's assume I find the software I need in the web.
What is the most usual/practical/simple method to transfer a
CBM program from a PC to a CBM-formatted disk? I've heard of
some methods (X1541 with StarCommander, C2N232 cable, etc.)
but I would like to know which one is the simplest.

Well, thanks a huge lot in advance for your answers...



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