The Disk Analyser Console (CTA)

The SPS Analyser is the heart of the SPS suite of tools for preservation. All tests for authenticity and integrity are made within the Analyser. It also creates Interchangeable Preservation Format files (.IPF) used for emulation, storage and mastering.

Due to flexible scripting (similar to descriptive language FreeForm, made by Trace Ltd., for use by replicators in the 1980s and 1990s) all types of data present on the original disk can be described. Currently over 400 distinct formats are defined using the CTA scripting language, which has intelligent control features to automatically support many format variants, without which would require scripting of at least 30% more.

CTA also features automatic script generation capabilities, which provides complete support for any combination of “generic MFM” hardware floppy disk controller formats, such as those found in the IBM-PC, Atari ST, Spectrum and Acorn Archimedes. Without such functionality, the formats that would require manual support would be easily a few hundred, and possibly even several thousand with so many variants possible. This capability could be easily adapted for FM controllers too, where it is likely there are another few hundred formats. The automatic script generation is transparent and data-driven. The resulting scripts are then used later in the analysation pipeline, and so the system is fully capable of verifying integrity and authenticity of these generated formats as is the case for user-created scripts.

The SPS Disk Analyser Console can import data produced using a Commodore Amiga or with the new KryoFlux High Definition Flux Imager for USB. The latter provides a state of the art forensic dump of the disk surface (e.g. 42MB of raw data for a 720KB DD 3.5" disk), including all anomalies and errors unaltered. Interpretation of the data is handled by the Analyser, which provides advanced tools and verification instruments to extract the data needed for usage and preservation.

CTA is exclusively distributed by KryoFlux Products & Services Limited.