TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Volume Number:2
Issue Number:3
Column Tag:Programmer's Forum

MacNosy Gets a Facelift

By Steve Jasik, Jasik Designs, Menlo Park, CA

MacWorkStation News

Apple announced the availability of MacworkStation in the January developer newsletter in a small article. I think that this is what Scully has been talking about in some of his recent speeches when he mentions the Mac as a workstation. The only problem with the MacworkStation [a software program] is that instead of making it a public domain standard, Apple is licensing the source code for $1500 to "interested" parties. My present feeling is that it would do more for Mac sales to sell the source code for a nominal fee then to license it.

MacworkStation is a host based applications environment that enables host computer software to control the Macintosh user interface on a Macintosh. The idea behind the MacworkStation is that it's a way of writing applications on a host so it can utilize the graphic interface of the Macintosh. Just think, soon we will be able to log on to MAUG or Delphi and instead of emulating a teletype or a VT 100, we will have menus and windows, etc.

MacworkStation consists of two parts, a protocol definition and a first implementation of that protocol. The protocol defines commands which are sent to the Macintosh, telling it what to do (put up a dialog box, etc). Events are defined to pass back to the host what is happening on the Macintosh. Note that much of what happens on the Mac need not be sent back to the host. The other part is a Macintosh Application that implements the protocol definition on a Macintosh. It is a generalized Macintosh application that is capable of being driven by an external process (the host). Unlike terminal emulation, the MacworkStation allows the host full access to the windows, pull down menus, dialogs, and other features of the Macintosh user interface.

I hope this gives you enough information to whet your appetite. Just think of putting the Mac user interface on your favorite mainframe application. You will have to modifiy the mainframe end of it to send the appropiate commands to the Mac. But it might just make life pleasant for us grunts out there in hackerdom.

For More information contact Apple Software licensing at (408) 973-4667 or write a letter to Scully requesting that MacworkStation be made a public standard.

New MacNosy Version 2

Over the past year MacNosy has helped many programmers learn about the Macintosh OS, and the workings of other Mac programs. Meeting some of my users at trade shows has been fun for me. Many of their suggestions have been incorporated in Version 2 [denoted as V2] of MacNosy.

The reasons for V2 of Nosy are the introduction of the 128K ROM's, and the addition of features such as the context sensative symbol substitution discussed below. This was what I started with. By the time I was finsihed coding, the mini editor has been substantially extended to include displays of procedures by double clicking on a procedure name, and the ability to interactively create seperate, mergable comment files had been added.

Nosy Does Windows!

The introduction of the Mac user interface makes Nosy much easier to use. The illustration in figure 1 shows the procedure "browser" window partially obscured by the display of a procedure. The Display menu allows one to bring up windows containing the listing of a procedure, the references to any symbol, the complete reference list of system symbols referenced, the complete reference list of trapnames referenced, the listing of all the strings in the program, the list of code blocks in the program, etc.

Fig. 1 Windows supported

Note that Nosy now lists the formal parameter list with the listing of a trap call, and for I/O calls, it knows that the register A0 holds the address of the parameter block, so in between the defination of A0 and the trap call it substitutes names of the structure variables. For a procedure that creates a stack frame with a "LINK A6" instruction, references of the form -d(A6) are to local variables, and are named "vxx_n", and those of the form d(A6) are the parameters "param1", "param2",... , and if it is a function, the function result is called "funRslt".

Other additions to the Window mode of Nosy are displays of information in its internal tables. They include a list of the structure names known to Nosy, lists of trapnames and their parameter lists, the names and values of the system global symbols, and a file listing most of constant definations for field values (event mask values and such).

Fig. 2 Symbols Displayed

New ROM Secrets

I have had a set of the new ROM's for a few weeks, and in addition to getting Nosy to disassemble them, I have made a few observations about the code in it. About 30K is devoted to resources, and to find out what they are use the "Rsrc map" list in window mode (Chicago font, WDEF0, etc). Other facts of interest are the methods used to speedup BlockMove and the QuickDraw routines. The code in Blockmove is unrolled, that is the loop body has been replicated a number of times to cut down on the number of increment and test instructions. The reason for this is that the 68000 used in the Mac is "bus limited", and anything one can do to cut down the number of instructions executed in a loop will speed it up.

Consider the loop:

    for i := 1 to 20 do a[i] := b[i]; 

by rewriting it as:

   for i := 1 to 20 by 2 do begin
      a[i] := b[i];     a[i+1] := b[i+1]

We eliminate the execution time associated with 10 increment and test instructions at the cost of extra space by duplicating the assignment statement.

Another interesting tidbit about the new ROM's are that they contain some 68020 instructions. Yes, Nosy knows about the 68020 instructions, and the FPU (68881) co-processor instructions. The new ROM's have been setup to run on a variety of machines as evidenced by some of the new EQU's.

Last November I made a "ROM comments" version of Nosy available along with a comments file that Nosy read in and merged with the disassembly listings it produces. In V2 I have extended this capability so any file can be commented, and provided a way that one can interactively create the comment files in window mode. Another little goodie that was added in conjunction with the comment mode was to "annotate" MOVEQ xx,D0 instructions with a comment of the form "; err = name" if Nosy's symbol dictionary contained an error number for the value.

Copy De-protection Techniques

Another use of Nosy is the location of copy protection code. To prefix this discussion, note that during manufacture (disk duplication), the duplicator writes the disk in a non-standard way by including non-standard data or address markers, or some other devious device so as to make the disk difficult to copy. During the execution of the program it checks the disk for the existance of this "mark", and if it finds it procedes normally. This checking code is usually refered to as copy protection code.

Fortunately for us the program itself cannot be "marked", for if it were, the segment loader could not read it, so Nosy can read the file in, and if the copy protection code can be found, and eliminated, the program is still usable. A number of the facilities in Nosy are useful in the location of copy protection code. The reference maps, lists of the resources ("please insert master disk"), the "Strings" display, the Search Mark command, and the conVert address command. The Search Mark command searchs for references of the form "$D5 ....." which are used to setup the Sony drivers for non-standard reads. If the procedure that references that data area contains references to any of the disk driver variables, then Nosy displays the message "ahoy matey, x marks the spot (base of the copy protection code)", and lists the chain of procedures that call it. One can then inspect the chain of procedures to find a suitable place to patch the code.

Trying to keep up with the changing copy protection methods is a never ending game, as evidenced by the frequent updates to Copy-To-Mac. I have sharpened some of the checks in Nosy so that it doesn't blow up or follow incorrect paths during the treewalk. This was done after I checked out some games, and found that they were putting garbage in the "CODE 0" segment.

More coming...

Other additions to V2 are the support of Desk accessories in Window mode, and the support of Switcher in all modes. Nosy is a continually evolving program to which I have been and will be adding bug fixs and new features. The current version of Nosy may be downloaded from my SIG on Delphi by those who have purchased it. At this time I am not sure what future directions Nosy will take, but some of the things under consideration are:

- to add features to the window mode so as to make it easier to use

- to make it into a debugger

- to add a symbolic simulation of the register contents along with some more flow analysis so it handles languages with register based calling sequences better, and produces a more informative reference map (knows the difference between Loads and Stores).

[MacNosy version 2 is available through the MacTutor store for $85. -Ed]

Fig. 3 "TREF Wind"


Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

OmniPlan 3.0 - Robust project management...
With OmniPlan, you can create logical, manageable project plans with Gantt charts, schedules, summaries, milestones, and critical paths. Break down the tasks needed to make your project a success,... Read more
Yummy FTP 1.11 - FTP/SFTP/FTPS client fo...
Yummy FTP is an FTP + SFTP + FTPS file transfer client which focuses on speed, reliability and productivity. Whether you need to transfer a few files or a few thousand, schedule automatic backups, or... Read more
Tweetbot 2.1 - Popular Twitter client. (...
Tweetbot is a full-featured OS X Twitter client with a lot of personality. Whether it's the meticulously-crafted interface, sounds and animation, or features like multiple timelines and column views... Read more
MacPilot 8.0 - Enable over 1,200 hidden...
MacPilot gives you the power of UNIX and the simplicity of Macintosh, which means a phenomenal amount of untapped power in your hands! Use MacPilot to unlock over 1,200 features, and access them all... Read more
Typinator 6.7 - Speedy and reliable text...
Typinator turbo-charges your typing productivity. Type a little. Typinator does the rest. We've all faced projects that require repetitive typing tasks. With Typinator, you can store commonly used... Read more
Adobe Lightroom 6.2 - Import, develop, a...
Adobe Lightroom is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $9.99/month bundled with Photoshop CC as part of the photography package. Lightroom 6 is also available for purchase as a... Read more
ForeverSave 2.1.4 - Universal auto-save...
ForeverSave auto-saves all documents you're working on while simultaneously doing backup versioning in the background. Lost data can be quickly restored at any time. Losing data, caused by... Read more
VueScan 9.5.27 - Scanner software with a...
VueScan is a scanning program that works with most high-quality flatbed and film scanners to produce scans that have excellent color fidelity and color balance. VueScan is easy to use, and has... Read more
AirPort Utility 6.3.6 - Set up and manag...
Note: Most recent release available only within OS X 10.11 El Capitan update. Use AirPort Utility to set up and manage your Wi-Fi network and AirPort base stations, including AirPort Express, AirPort... Read more
Quicksilver 1.3.1 - Application launcher...
Quicksilver is a light, fast and free Mac application that gives you the power to control your Mac with keystrokes alone. Quicksilver allows you to find what you need quickly and easily, then act... Read more

YAMGUN (Games)
YAMGUN 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: The invasion has begun! Protect the walls of the citadel against waves of enemies! But watch out, you will soon run out of ammo...... | Read more »
Royal Bounty HD (Games)
Royal Bounty HD 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: New World Computing Approved "Hi Guys! looks good so far! keep up the good work. I worked on HoMM 3 and 4 creating all of the... | Read more »
Swords & Crossbones: An Epic Pirate...
Swords & Crossbones: An Epic Pirate Story 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Camel Up (Games)
Camel Up 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
The Martian: Bring Him Home (Games)
The Martian: Bring Him Home 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Based on the best selling novel and critically acclaimed film, THE MARTIAN tells the story of Astronaut Mark... | Read more »
This Week at 148Apps: September 21-30, 2...
Leap Into Fall With 148Apps How do you know what apps are worth your time and money? Just look to the review team at 148Apps. We sort through the chaos and find the apps you're looking for. The ones we love become Editor’s Choice, standing out above... | Read more »
Tweetbot 4 for Twitter (Social Networki...
Tweetbot 4 for Twitter 4.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Social Networking Price: $4.99, Version: 4.0 (iTunes) Description: *** 50% off for a limited time. *** | Read more »
Mori (Games)
Mori 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Stop, rewind and unwind with Mori. Time is always running, take a moment to take control. Mori is an action puzzle game about infinitely... | Read more »
100 Years' War (Games)
100 Years' War 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Tower in the Sky (Games)
Tower in the Sky 0.0.60 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 0.0.60 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »

Price Scanner via

Save up to $350 with Apple refurbished iMacs
Apple has Certified Refurbished iMacs available for up to $350 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac – $1949 $350 off MSRP - 27... Read more
Mac Pros on sale for up to $300 off MSRP
B&H Photo has Mac Pros on sale for up to $300 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 3.7GHz 4-core Mac Pro: $2818.99, $181 off MSRP - 3.5GHz 6-core Mac Pro: $3699... Read more
5K iMacs on sale for up to $150 off MSRP, fre...
B&H Photo has the 27″ 3.3GHz 5K iMac on sale for $1899.99 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP. They have the 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMac on sale for $2149, $150 off MSRP... Read more
Twelve South Redesigns BookArc For Today’s Sm...
Twelve South has announced a redesigned version of their very first product, BookArc for MacBook. Tailored specifically for the newest generation of MacBooks, BookArc holds the new, smaller Apple... Read more
Phone 6s Tips & Tricks – Tips Book For iP...
Poole, United Kingdom based Tap Guides Ltd. has announced the release and immediate availability of iPhone 6s Tips & Tricks, an in-depth eBook available in the iBookstore that’s priced just $2.99... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $994,...
Best Buy has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro available for $994.99 on their online store. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Their price is $105 off MSRP. Price valid... Read more
Is The iPad Pro Really A Serious Laptop Repla...
Probably not, at least for productive professionals and other power users. Steve Jobs declared that we’d entered the “post-PC Era” with the advent of the original iPad in 2010, a phrase we don’t hear... Read more
Wednesday Deal: 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros f...
Adorama has 13″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $130 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and Adorama charges sales tax for NY & NJ residents only: - 13″ 2.7GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro: $1199.99 $... Read more
uBar 3.0 for Mac OS X – Custom Dock Replaceme...
Brawer Software has announced the release of uBar 3.0, an important update to their popular app and window manager for Mac OS X. uBar allows users to position it whichever side of the screen they... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro (refurbished) avai...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros available for $829, or $270 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Multiple Customer Support P...
Job Description:Customer SupportSpecialist - Retail Customer Service and SalesTransform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the Read more
Software Engineer, *Apple* Watch - Apple (U...
…the team that is revolutionizing the watch! As a software engineer on the Apple Watch team, you will be responsible for building world-class applications and frameworks Read more
*Apple* Online Store UAT Lead - Apple (Unite...
**Job Summary** The Apple Online Store is a fast paced and ever evolving business environment. The User Acceptance Testing (UAT) lead in this organization is able to Read more
Hardware Systems Integration Engineer - *App...
**Job Summary** We are seeking an enthusiastic electrical engineer for the Apple Watch team. This is a design engineering position that entails working with Read more
Touch Validation Design (EE) - *Apple* Watc...
**Job Summary** Help launch next-generation Touch Technologies in Apple products. The Touch Technology team develops cutting-edge Touch solutions and technologies that Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.