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Strand 520 OLE on MacOSX


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I've been trying to get the Strand OLE to run on my Mac within OSX, ie without the use of bootcamp or Parallels or similar.

There is a thread on the ControlBooth forum that explains how you can use DOSBox, and it's quite a neat solution. Unfortunately there is a limitation, in that the Group information in the Strand software is turned into hard values and the link to the Group is lost. The great thing about DOSbox is that it uses the folder the program sits in as the C: drive for DOS, which means when you save a show file it saves it onto your normal hard drive into an accessible folder.


I managed to get the OLE working in VirtualBox, using DOS 7.10. It appears to be working fine, but what I'm having trouble with now is how to get the show file off the emulator once I've edited it. Virtualbox uses a disk image file as a c: drive, so it's not accessible from outside of Virtualbox.

The only way I've been able to get a show file into the emulator is by creating an image file with the show file in it (using Toast) and then mounting that as a drive in VirtualBox. That works for getting it in there, but how do I get an edited file out of it?

I've attempted to install various DOS USB drivers and then mounted USB devices in Virtualbox (memory sticks, external USB Floppy drive), but I just can't get DOS to see the drives. My attempts to share a folder from my computer with the virtual machine have also failed.

Is there anybody out there with a better understanding of DOS and/or Virtualbox who has a solution? I think it would be of interest to quite a lot of people on this forum.


I've uploaded the Virtualbox machine with the Strand OLE installed onto a file exchange website for anyone who would like to try it to download, it is here (expires in 21 days, PM me if you want it after that and I'll upload it again):

Download Strand OLE Virtualbox


You will need to download Virtualbox (for free) here: https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads

and then import the downloaded (and unzipped) file into it.


There is a show file on there for you to muck about with.

Let me know how you get on.




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Unfortunately there is a limitation, in that the Group information in the Strand software is turned into hard values and the link to the Group is lost.



It is possible to get this working using DosBox, as I've done it myself, and have it working on my mac. I explained my woes in a previous post on another thread, but I didn't completely explain my method (See post *22 on that thread). I came across the same error message telling me that group referencing wasn't possible. I can't remember the thought process, but I know from experience that you certainly can use group referencing on 520 consoles, so I think I checked the specs, and reasoned that it would work on a pentium processor (which is what the 520i uses).


The trick is to tell DosBox it is a pentium machine, rather than a 486, which is what the default thinks it is. You need to edit the startup sequence in the dosbox preferences, which you find in the *username*/library/preferences (see the dosbox website for further info on locating).


It was a while since I installed it, but to install, if you edit the startup sequence and tell dosbox it's a pentium machine, rather than auto, and increase the memeroy to 512mb (I think the default is 64mb on opening, and I seem to remember an install attempt telling me I was out of memory), and then instal as you would on any dos machine, it should be fine. Once installed I just edited the startup to auto-load straight into the Strand OLE. See the text below on the commands I used to get it working once installed.:


mount C ~/dosstuff






memsize 512





(Obviously replace the "dosstuff" with the folder of your choice.)


The advantage is that all of my show files then appear in the 'dossstuff' folder without the fuss.



EDIT: Should probably mention (as I've just spotted it in my other post) that you need to install the C5 version of the strand software, not the CI. Something about memory errors I think.

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