Installing Open Kickstart Switcher in A500

The Hardware

The OpenKickstartSwitcher in combination with the OpenAmigaMouseTrigger makes a great enhancement for your A500/+. These fantastic little pieces of hardware - made by SukkoPera - in combination with a 27C160 EPROM makes it possible to switch between 2-4 different KickStart (KS) images. If you add a second trigger source, you could switch between 2-6 KS images. The maximum numbers of images you can use in you switcher depends on what EPROM you use:

  • 27C800 can hold 3 images - 2x 256KB and 1x 512KB.
  • 27C160 can hold 6 images - 4x 256KB and 2x 512KB.

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Remote Desktop on your Amiga

One amazing feature of the A314 - the trapdoor expansion with a Raspberry Pi co-processor for A500/+ - is the Remote Desktop, or Remote WorkBench (RemoteWB), as it's called on the Amiga.

Although the RemoteWB has some limitations, I think it is quite useful in some cases. For instance, if you write a blog post and need a screenshot of your WorkBench (WB), it is very nice to capture the Amiga screen from your PC with relative ease. In my opinion, this is probably the closest thing to a "native" capture of your Amiga WB you will get, without too much hustle that is. Of course, you could always use UAE if you want to capture a screenshot or grab a video of your favorite game - but that would be cheating, wouldn't it! 🙂

Requirements

For the RemoteWB to work, you will - as you have probably guessed - need an A314 expansion card with a Raspberry Pi. You also need to have at least 512 KB of shared chip ram between the A314 and the Amiga.
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Aminet via Midnight Commander on your A500

Have you ever wanted to get stuff from Aminet to your A500 in a convenient way?
- With the A314 you can, and here's my how-to-guide:

Above you can see when I use Midnight Commander (MC) from AmigaShell.

I run MC with two arguments:
-a, --stickchars Disable usage of graphic characters for line drawing.
-b, --nocolor Forces black and white display.
This is to make it look a bit better in AmigaShell. Continue reading

How to play Spotify on your A500

Being kind of a newbie regarding linux, it was quite hard for me to pull this of. However, with a little help from my friend, who gave me the right tools to work with, I finally got this mojo working! This is the story of how I managed to get Spotify to play on my Amiga 🙂

I got the idea after I played an mp3 via my A314 - a trapdoor expansion with a Raspberry Pi as co-processor. The PiAudio-service is piping the audio via an Advanced Linux Sound Architecture (ALSA) plug called amiga. This plug pipes the raw audio via the memory that the Raspberry Pi and the Amiga shares. On the Amiga side the piped audio goes to the sound chip Paula, that takes care of the playback. Note that the Raspberry Pi takes care of the decoding. Continue reading

How to setup your A314

This tutorial will only cover what I think is two most common setups for A314 v1.1, the A500 rev.6a and the A500/+ rev.8a. I used an A500+ with WorkBench 2.1 as reference for this tutorial. However, I also made the 1 MB chip mod setup on my A500 rev. 6a.
I will try to make it mostly a bullet to bullet post, to keep it as short and clear as possible

Setting up your hardware.

First thing to do is to make sure your Amiga sees the extra memory shared with the A314, and that the RTC gets dectected. The amount of extra memory you will get from the A314 depends on your motherboard revision, and jumper settings, see images below:

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