3.3 KiB

Contributing To The Effort

Contributions welcome! Preliminaries:


  1. Disassembly of the MouseGraphics ToolKit
    • Continue the effort to understand this powerful GUI library.
    • Make it relocatable, work on C bindings for cc65.
    • Pure disassembly changes take place in the disasm branch, which builds identically to the original.
  2. Disassembly of DeskTop itself
    • The core bits of DeskTop.
    • The various overlays.
    • The DiskCopy overlay is basically a stand-alone app. Could be fun.
  3. Disassembly of Selector
  4. Bug fixes
  5. Add new Desk Accessories

DeskTop Disassembly Burn-Down

To feel confident about making additions and fixes to DeskTop, we need to make sure we're not breaking things. That can be done in some cases by relying on API boundaries, such as between MGTK and the DeskTop application. But DeskTop itself is a big, monolithic application with multiple overlays, so we need to understand nearly all of it before we can start moving code around.

The res/stats.pl tool provides is a quick and dirty analysis of the progress in turning raw da65 output into something we can confidently modify. Here's a snapshot of the output for some files:

desktop_main.s unscoped:  246  scoped: 1109  raw:   60  unrefed:   29
desktop_res.s  unscoped:   64  scoped:    0  raw:    4  unrefed:   64
desktop_aux.s  unscoped:   83  scoped:  301  raw:    2  unrefed:   32
loader.s       unscoped:    1  scoped:    0  raw:   20  unrefed:    0
mgtk.s         unscoped:    0  scoped:   10  raw:   13  unrefed:    0
invoker.s      unscoped:    0  scoped:    0  raw:    2  unrefed:    0
  • unscoped counts the number of auto-generated labels like L1234 produced by da65 which are not in two nested scopes. A scope is used for the overall structure of a module, and a nested scope is used for procedures. This counts labels which are not in either, and thus may have some affinity for a particular address and therefore can't be safely moved.

  • scoped counts the number of auto-generated labels like L1234 produced by da65 which are inside two nested scopes. Once a label is local to a procedure it is generally safe to move, although actually understanding the purpose and giving it a more meaningful label is even better.

  • raw counts the number of 16-bit addresses ($1234) in the code; these usually refer to routines, resources, or occasionally buffer locations that need to be understood and replaced with labels.

  • unrefed counts the number of auto-generated labels like L1234 that lack references within the source file. Early on, these often hint at bogus disassembly but can also signal that the code to use a routine or resource has not yet been identified.