Apple /// Serial Bootstrapping

If you already have the DOS version of ADT and the Apple II emulator on disk for your ///, you can use them to transfer the ADTPro disk image in Apple II mode. Just tell ADT that you're using an SSC in slot 7 (where the emulated SSC lives) and transfer away. Reboot with the ADTPro disk, and you'll be ready to go. If not... read on.

If you still need to connect your host and Apple /// computers through their serial ports, refer back to the Connections section.

If you'd rather have a pre-built ADTPro floppy disk arrive at your door than create one yourself, click here.

Bootstrapping demonstration video

Here is a 5-minute overview video of the bootstrapping process. It shows the bare-metal bootstrapping scenario of an Apple /// with a null modem cable, all the way to making a bootable ADTPro floppy:

Starting from bare metal

The Apple /// doesn't have the rich set of firmware the way the Apple II does. That means that the serial port setup and communications software has to be "bootstrapped" - that is, typed in - by you, dear reader. The bootstrapping operation happens at 9600 baud, and that speed is not customizable. ADTPro client and server cooperate to set the speed automatically.

The Apple /// does have a minimally functional command line interface, or "monitor." It is accessible with the familiar (to Apple IIe users) Ctrl-OpenApple-Reset key sequence. The machine will beep, and you will be presented with a blinking cursor next to an arrow prompt. You then proceed to type in and run a short bootstrap loader; clicking on "Bootstrapping->SOS" from the ADTPro server gives instructions for that. The bootstrap loader then waits to accept the rest of bootstrapping code from the ADTPro server, which flows when you dismiss the ADTPro server dialog box. ADTPro will complete the bootstrapping process and leave you with your /// running the ADTPro client under SOS, where you can format blank disks and reconstitute software from virtual disk images.

Public domain Apple /// software is available here, for example.

Detailed steps

  1. Connect your host and Apple /// computers through their respective serial ports.
  2. Turn on the Apple ///; hit the Ctrl-OpenApple-Reset key sequence to get the monitor command line interface. The prompt should look like this in the upper left-hand corner of the screen:
  3. On the Apple ///, type in the bootstrap loader, below. Note that every "0" character is a number zero, not a letter; every "1" character is a number one, not a letter. The sequence of lines to type is this:
    A000:78 D8 A9 40 8D CA FF AD
    A008:DF FF 09 F2 8D DF FF A9
    A010:0B 8D F2 C0 A9 1E 8D F3
    A018:C0 A9 00 A8 85 7E A9 A1
    A020:85 7F A2 48 8E 24 04 E8
    A028:8E 25 04 20 40 A0 C9 47
    A030:D0 F9 20 40 A0 91 7E 8D
    A038:27 04 C8 D0 F5 4C 00 A1
    A040:AD F1 C0 29 68 C9 08 D0
    A048:F7 AD F0 C0 60 

    It is imperative that these numbers and letters be typed in exactly and precisely as they appear above, with no errors. It will be important to review and re-check the lines before actually running it. To ensure that you never have to type this in more than once, follow all the way through to the end of this procedure to format a new floppy and receive the full, bootable ADTPro disk that ships with this distribution.

  4. To review the entire bootstrap loader program you typed in, type the following command:

    Any line can be corrected by re-typing that entire line (starting on a new, blank line). After typing the program in and checking it, your screen might look something like this:

  5. Once you are satisfied that the program is error-free, run it with the following command:
  6. If the bootstrap loader is functioning correctly, an inverse word "HI" will appear in the upper-right hand corner of the screen. The Apple /// is now waiting for further instructions from the ADTPro server. The screen will look something like this:
  7. On the ADTPro server, click on the "Bootstrapping->SOS" menu item. Dismiss the dialog box that appears (since you have just followed the same instructions, the bootstrap loader is already running now). The bootstrapping process should now continue without any further need for intervention. As data is sent from the ADTPro server down to the ///, a character will flash to the right of the status message to indicate progress. If the screen stays still, you will want to re-check your serial connections. Some of the stages bootstrapping will be going through:
  8. When it is finished, the ADTPro SOS client should be running on the Apple ///.
  9. Use the ADTPro client's format function to format a diskette or two. Note that in the SOS world, formatting a diskette doesn't make it bootable - it just prepares the filesystem for writing. The next step of sending the ADTPro distribution diskette will create bootable diskette for you.
  10. You are now ready to receive the ADTPRO-1.3.0.DSK disk image from the host. Once you've done that, you've got a bootable SOS diskette that contains the ADTPro client program.