[OpenBIOS] Graphics mode bios

Arp Kruithof arpy at wish.net
Thu Aug 16 17:27:56 CEST 2001

From:           	Arp Kruithof <arpy at wish.net>
To:             	"zechmer" <cu0815 at compuserve.de>
Subject:        	Re: [OpenBIOS] Graphics mode bios
Send reply to:  	arpy at wish.net
Date sent:      	Thu, 16 Aug 2001 16:26:05 +0200

Hello Gavin/Bernhard
> Hello Gavin,

I certainly like the project - have been looking / thinking / dreaming 
about an open source BIOS for x86 for some years (not openBIOS) 
and some projects seem to be underway - I just have very little 
time myself at the moment so for now I'll happily read along ...

> I once started writing my own BIOS which started already in
> graphics (hercules monochrome graphics) mode back in the 
1980's [pure
> assembler].
> I gave it up, because I couldn't init the keyboard correctly.
> Each time I requested port 60h it didn't leave anything there.
> Later I implemented the keyboard code from linux but this
> didn't help me and the 286 board at all.
> This was so frustrating, that I gave it up.
> Perhaps some suggestions?

Couldn'r resist reacting to the keyboard issue Bernhard mentioned. 
That shoudn't be too hard to do I think. A couple of sources might 
- IBM AT Technical Reference which has a complete BIOS source 
listing - just to pick up on some tech details or ideas (not 
sugesting you copy the code just that reading it may give you a 

- 8042 datasheets for timing details etc. on original chip used

- Datasheets for popular chipsets that emulate the gate A20 & 
keyboard interface - they may even come with sample code 

I should have most of that sitting on the bookshelf here so if you 
need to 'borough' the books let me know.

Good luck

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arpy at wish.net
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