C-Net Dongle Cracked!

UPDATE: An original DS-2 11.6 disk has been confirmed to boot with this dongle. Thanks for sending that info in.

Thanks to Hoy Brothers from 13th Floor BBS for sending me the results of tests on an original C-Net dongle. Between that, some cryptic info I found on old comp.sys.cbm posts, and lots and lots of testing, I figured it out.

This should allow all those oldschool sysops who lost their original dongles (like me) to load their original C-Net disks again. Should work with various versions. Not sure about C-Net 128, but I’d love feedback from anyone who tries this to confirm different versions it runs on. My original C-Net 12.0 runs fantastic now.

Parts needed: 4.7k ohm resistor (1/4 watt should be fine), 10uf non-polarized capacitor (5v minimum rating i assume), 1n4148 diode (the cheap ones you used to get in batches from radio shack), and a female 9-pin serial connector (for the joystick port).

Using the diagram on https://www.c64-wiki.com/wiki/Control_Port

Connect pin 7 to pin 9

Pin 5 -> 4.7k ohm resistor -> Pin 9

Pin 5 -> 10uf Non-polarized Capacitor -> Pin 9 (the resistor and capacitor run in parallel)

Pin 1 -> Anode of Diode – Cathode of diode -> Pin 5

That’s it. Let me know how this works out for you. Remember it plugs into port 2.

Versions confirmed so far:

DS-2 11.6



Hybrid 2400 Emulation . Using Mac Vice with a Pi Modem Emulator

A reader named Mike sent this in. He wanted to use his Raspberry Pi as the modem emulator, and his Mac with Vice to call BBSes. Here’s the working combo he came up with:

1. Install tcpser on my Raspberry Pi.
2. Run tcpser with this command line:
tcpser -v 25232 -p 6400 -tSs -l 7 -i “k0” -s 2400 -N “/tmp/noanswer.txt” -B “/tmp/busy.txt”
3. In Mac VICE, alter these:
:: Peripherals: Cartridges: ACIA disabled (uncertain if needed)
:: Peripherals: Cartridges: Userport RS232: Baud Rate 2400 / Enabled/ Device 4
:: Peripherals: RS232: Device 4: |nc IP.to.Pi.xx 25232

Build your own “Strikelink” C64 User Port -> USB device for less than $15!

The least expensive way to get your C64 online is by building what I call a “Strikelink”, which is basically just a null modem that converts TTL signals to rs232 and vice versa. The parts listed below will allow you to hook your c64 to any usb port on a pc. Software on the PC side makes the “Strikelink” act as a virtual hayes modem at 2400 baud!

You’ll need a ch340g -> Serial/USB Device. You can find them on ebay for a few bucks. For 9600 baud, you’ll need to solder directly to the chip’s rts and cts lines, or find a ch340g -> usb with direct rts/cts out pins.

and this


Connect the TxD pin on the TTL Adapter to pins B and C on the User Port plug (RxD). Connect the RxD pin on the TTL adapter to pin M on the User Port plug (TxD). And connect the GND pin on the TTL adapter to pin N (Signal Ground) on the User Port plug. Install the driver, load up Leif Bloomquist’s BBS Server, and now you have a 2400 baud modem for $15 or less.

To add full 9600 baud capability

Add a wire from M to 5 on user port plug
Add a wire from B,C to 7 on user port plug
Attached a wire from L to 6 on the user port plug

Add the rts/cts lines to the ch340g from the user port (user port rts -> ch340g cts and user port cts -> ch340g rts)

Then use the UP9600 driver on Striketerm or CCGMS 2017

Use the instructions in the Connecting to C64 BBSes section on the left and look for the heading Using StrikeLink or other TTL/Serial Adapter/swiftlink/turbo232 (to use your PC as a virtual hayes modem)

Refer to http://www.hardwarebook.info/C64_RS232_User_Port for a diagram of the C64 User Port