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6502cloud – Bringing the 80's to the cloud (6502cloud.com)
172 points by bane on Aug 28, 2017 | hide | past | favorite | 41 comments

I keep forgetting that the Atari 2600, the NES, the Apple II and the C64 had the same processor. But... didn't the C64 have a modem? So it should be able to connect to the Internet, even if very slowly?

The C64 did not have a built in modem, but a number of them were available as an add-on. There was a trick where you could "overclock" a certain 300 baud modem to 450 baud, cutting download times significantly.

I never had a IP stack for it, but I did use my Commodore machines to dial into a shell account and use the internet available at the time (telent and ftp), and to MUD. I believe the terminal program I used had full ANSI support.

Although in 2017 data usage; 50% faster than forever is still forever.

Oh, I remember it taking multiple days to pirate^Wdownload software that took multiple disks. And call-waiting wasn't your friend, getting kicked off of the one phone line the entire house had at their disposal. You're right, 50% faster than forever is still forever, and/but 50% faster than multiple days is still multiple days.

That being said, I had quite the software library.

Sure, there are modems and serial ports, ranging from 300 to 115200 bps, but since 2002 there are 10 Mb Ethernet cards too. I wrote a TCP/IP stack for it: http://oliverschmidt.github.io/ip65/

This'll probably kill the site for a bit from the load, but http://oldservers.ddns.net/index.html

Probably everyone reading this (including you) already know that, but my OC forces me to specify, that C64 had MOS 6510, which was an improved version of 6502.

Yes the 6510 had an on-chip cassette interface. State-of-the-art. Ran at 1Mhz tho', the Beeb ran at 2Mhz making it the beast in the 8-bit stable.

The 6510 ran at 2 MHz on the C= 128 if the VIC was turned off.


While we're nitpicking, the NES used the RP2A03 running at 1.79 MHz in NTSC regions and RP2A07 running at 1.66 MHz in PAL regions.


The 2600 actually had a simpler version of the 6502 called 6507. It had fewer address lines and could only handle 8KB.

And the British Acorn BBC Model B, which led to Acorn Risk Machines and ARM Cores - one of the UK's finest ever exports.

Can we get a cloud SID chip to go with it? I need to play some classic C64 Labyrinth.

It would be considerable work. I would need to rip the SID emulator code from somewhere. Then i could have it generate a WAV file or something to return.

Were you inspired by David Beazley's talks? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1VRM_PebPeE

I'm not sure if it is in the linked one, but he loaded MS BASIC successfully off of an audio cassette. Don't believe his machine had sound output but incredibly relied on audio input for reading from "disk" (tape).

This is all very hilarious, but I'm actually quite serious about the effort to get my favourite 8-bit machine from the 80's - the Oric-1/Atmos/Telestrat machines (which also use 6502-based CPU's) - onto the Internet.

So, actually this could be quite useful - especially if we treat the machine state of the local system as transmutable, to be transferred up to "6502Cloud" for execution later. This could indeed be the beginning of an Oric-1/Atmos revolution in Internet communications!

(Disclaimer: TODO: Give the Oric-1/Atmos a Modem/Wifi device ..)

I have plans on getting my c64 to talk to 6502cloud, to do some parallel processing. Why? Because I can.

Get a Wifi232 card when there's another run. They're wifi modems that connect via RS232 and provide a hayes command set interface.

Yeah, thanks for the advice - I'm considering a lower-tech solution though, using just a plain ol' ESP32 board, wired up to the ol' Oric. Actually thats not the hard part - once this is working, we'll still have to write a TERM app for the Oric, which is all the fun I suppose ..

This is excellent.

I've been learning 65c816 assembly for SNES programming and I've wanted a tool much like this.

The 65c816 is based on the 6502, I wonder how much work it would be to extend this.

Probably not to bad, if you have a decent emulator to hack on. Its a matter of making it cloud worthy (AWS Lambda, Gateway, setting up DNS, and all the other parts that are a pain in the ass.)

They should have put a macroassembler in front - you upload the LDAs and STAs and get the execution back :) Rodnay Zacks would be proud!

I made a thing to play around with it online (it uses dasm) http://requirebin.com/?gist=348a0d28a6ee1c2907106b40f7d19d99

Or you can just view the output directly: http://requirebin.com/embed?gist=348a0d28a6ee1c2907106b40f7d...

I dont want to do that, because I want multiple assembly frontends eventually. What other front end besides assembly? Why, there's the old Blitz BASIC compiler :) And let us not forget that LLVM has a 6502 backend. Imagine programming 6502 in C, Fortran or any other language that LLVM supports?

Thanks for the comments everyone.

If there's a feature you're interested in, let me know on reddit u/6502cloud..

Looks like fun, but you'll have to have a VIC-II in the cloud or something like that if you want to do anything graphical with it. So much of the way those machines worked depends on the NTSC/PAL video timings -- raster interrupts and so forth.

and a SID chip for audio synthesis. :)

SID chip emulation just isn't the same, since the chip has both analog and digital components in the same die.

It's projects like this that make me love hackers. Perfect combo of silly and awesome.

Synthwave intensifies

bit OT: How about the other way around, a 8/16 bit computer that can connect to the internet, not to run a browser, but some sort of BBS like system, to interact with other owners. Throw in a SD card as storage medium to make it a bit more practical.

There have been a few articles on here recently about people doing just that via a serial-to-wifi "modem" dongle.

Yea, the actual process of connecting is solved, however, it would be cool if there was actually a service, sort of the old BBS, for these old machines, something scaled to their cpu and memory requirements, you will never be able to load even a stripped down web page

There are telnet accessible BBS services still around: http://telnetbbsguide.com/bbs/list/brief/

    LDA #$21

I don't think the Apple ][ monitor ROM is included in this project, but I hear ya... =)

You could JSR $FDD2 instead and it would work on any Commodore computer.


Most Commodore computer models shared a common jump table at the top of ROM for basic input and output.

Umm... why this remember me to 0x10c , Trillek, Techcompilant ...

apart of the game, was the idea of having a cluster or a cloud of servers to run the virtual computers inside of the game. Remember that the original 0x10c initially was to have a 6502 CPU but Notch change his mind and make his own 16bit CPU.

0x10c... Ahhh.. Good times.

I got super excited at first, thought this was an 80's music startup. Then the pump fake to assembly.

I need mapper support first

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