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ZILCH How-to

How to bring ZILCH back to life again.

Motivation

Since I was a teenager, I wanted to know the internal secrets of Infocom adventures and the software and hardware systems used to build them. (My fascination was only the slowed down by the language. I had to learn English first.)

Best known are the articles

And then there is "Down From the Top of Its Game - The Story of Infocom, Inc."

Much was written, but the exact workings of the tools used, remained vague and for many years it was thought the tools Infocom used to create their legendary interactive fiction works was lost forever.

Then 2008 Andy Baio made public details (What a lose!) from the legendary Infocom Drive. An anonymous source close to the company gave him a complete backup of Infocom's shared network drive from 1989.

At PAX East 2010 someone "lost" some USB Drives, which - after some puzzle solving - revealed interesting internal Infocom development documents:

Title File Name
Vocabulary and syntax compaction compact.txt
Conditional compilation conditional.doc
What should (or may) be in your game.ZIL file. game-zil.doc
WRITER'S GUIDELINES FOR ZIL guidelines.text
About "support in ZILCH for shared code libraries" libraries.txt
Accessing low core locations lowcore.txt
New xzip instructions ... required for multi-player games multi-player.txt
"EXTENDED ZIPTEST" [of Multiplayer Functionality] multi-player.zil
INTERLOGIC WRITER'S GUIDELINES newguide.mss
USER-DEFINABLE PROPERTIES propdef.txt
EZIP: Z-language Interpreter Program (Expanded) spec-ezip.fwf
ZAP: Z-language Assembly Program spec-zap.fwf
ZIP: Z-language Interpreter Program spec-zip.rno
Enhancements to TABLEs table.doc
New TELL Macro tell.doc
ZIP: Z-language Interpreter Program xzip.txt
YZIP is ZIP version 6 yzip.txt
ZIL Course zil-course.fwf
The Zork Implementation Language zil.doc
Changes to ZILCH zilch.new

In addition Learning ZIL or Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Writing Interactive Fiction But Couldn't Find Anyone Still Working Here to Ask by Steven Eric Meretzky could be found on the Internet Archive for quite some time.

At the Game Developers Conference 2014 Dave Lebling gave a talk with the title "Classic Game Postmortem: Zork" where near minute 24 he shows some interesting slides, the first one reveals the names of the tools used and the machines the tool chain was running at:

Z-machine tool chain

The second one shows a code snippet which illustrates the translation process from ZIL to ZAP accomplished by ZILCH, the ZIL Compiler. The slide compares the ZIL MATCH-FCN routine in source and compiled form. This was the first time I saw a direct comparison between ZIL and ZAP code.

From ZIL to ZAP

The third slide shows the difference between Muddle code used in the original mainframe Muddle Zork and the ZIL Zork objects.

At Apr 16, 2019 Jason Scott, the best known internet archivist in a courageous step released the Infocom source code on GitHub.

Based on this and other sources Andrew Plotkin created the The Obsessively Complete Infocom Catalog.

I was especially interested in the source code of Zork II packed in zork2-mac-r22.zip because the archive contains the complete compiled ZAP files as well.

Jesse McGrew created the open source ZIL Compiler ZILF many years ago, so we don't need ZILCH for creating new interactive fiction stories. Nevertheless my motivation is to bring back to life the really lost masterpieces of Infocom, first of all ZILCH.

Apr 30, 2019 Lars Brinkhoff made a single commit to the https://github.com/PDP-10/zil GitHub repository. Lars Brinkhoff is the researcher who helped identifying and extracting the original Muddle Zork files from the MIT Tapes of Tech Square (ToTS) collection.

Here are the contents of the https://github.com/PDP-10/zil repository:

<ZORK.Z>APPLY.MUD.1       Mar  5  1981
<ZORK.Z>GETSTR.MUD.2      Nov  5  1979
<ZORK.Z>IBYTES.MUD.2      Oct 26  1979
<ZORK.Z>ZAC.MUD.18        Nov 13  1979
<ZORK.Z>ZAP.MUD.171       Jan 18  1980
<ZORK.Z>ZIL.MUD.176       Oct 29  1980
<ZORK.Z>ZILCH.MUD.188     Nov  3  1980
<ZORK.Z>ZIP.MUD.96        Dec 15  1979
<ZORK.Z>ZIPOUT.MUD.2      Feb 29  1980
<ZORK.Z>ZIPUTIL.MUD.3     Dec 15  1979
<ZORK.Z>ZOPS.MUD.18       Jan 17  1980
<ZORK.Z>ZSTR.MUD.2        Sep  3  1979

<ZORK.ZFTP>ZFTP.MUD.12    Jun  7  1980

So I can safely say that April 2019 was one of the most exciting months of my life.

Sep 01, 2020 I asked him on the IRC channel #pdp-10 on freenode

<ZoBoRf> larsb: Where did the files in
         https://github.com/PDP-10/zil originally come from?
<larsb> I think from the Infocom drive.
<larsb> No, that's not right.
<larsb> That's from a MIT TOPS-20 machine.
<larsb> It's from ToTS, same as the ITS files.
<larsb> I like the ring of that, "ITS files".
<larsb> The truth is out there!
<ZoBoRf> larsb: I wanted say something about
         the origin of the files in my zilch writeup.
<ZoBoRf> But as I see it is better to be fuzzy about the truth?
        May I quote your info verbatim?
<larsb> I don't think it's a secret it's from ToTS.
<larsb> Yes, you may quote me or rewrite the text as you like
<larsb> We had help from "Mr X" who helped get the files.
        I believe CSAIL was aware what was going on.
        Even a senior professor helped me get one particular file.
<larsb> http://people.csail.mit.edu/devon/archive/
<larsb> There's some public information.

Distant Goal: Literate Version of ZILCH: The Program

Now, that I know there is a ZILCH compiler available, my idea is to document it in a literate programming style, introduced by Donald E. Knuth in which a computer program is given an explanation of its logic in a natural language, such as English, interspersed with snippets of macros and traditional source code, from which compilable source code can be generated. Knuth used literate programming to write and document his famous typesetting program TeX still in wide use today. I'm going to do that with Nuweb which I made some small changes to.

But before I do something like this, I should be sure that the work is not in vain. The best is to let the compiler translate some code and compare the code with some code we know is generated by a ZILCH compiler in the eighties.

Zork II

To do this I take the Zork II sources mentioned above and unpack them:

| File Name      |    Size |
| -------------- | ------- |
| actions.cmp    |    1576 |
| actions.zap    |  103567 |
| actions.zil    |  120560 |
| clock.zap      |    1042 |
| clock.zil      |    1618 |
| crufty.xzap    |     495 |
| crufty.zil     |     635 |
| demons.zap     |    1128 |
| demons.zil     |    1303 |
| dungeon.cmp    |    1300 |
| dungeon.zap    |       8 |
| dungeon.zil    |   69088 |
| macros.zap     |     220 |
| macros.zil     |    2324 |
| main.zap       |    3185 |
| main.zil       |    3918 |
| parser.zap     |   21007 |
| parser.zil     |   29701 |
| syntax.zap     |       8 |
| syntax.zil     |   14584 |
| verbs.zap      |   39896 |
| verbs.zil      |   45454 |
| zork2.errors   |     585 |
| zork2.xzap     |     294 |
| zork2.zap      |     273 |
| zork2.zil      |     915 |
| zork2dat.zap   |  180229 |
| zork2freq.xzap |    3908 |
| zork2str.zap   |   36686 |
| -------------- | ------- |
| Bytes          |  685507 |
| Files          |      29 |

All we have to do is to let ZILCH compile the ZIL files and check the generated ZAP files against the given ones.

Let me group and rearrange the files:

zork2.errors
zork2.zil     zork2.zap       zork2.xzap
                              zork2freq.xzap
              zork2dat.zap
dungeon.zil   dungeon.zap
syntax.zil    syntax.zap
macros.zil    macros.zap
clock.zil     clock.zap
main.zil      main.zap
parser.zil    parser.zap
demons.zil    demons.zap
crufty.zil    crufty.xzap
verbs.zil     verbs.zap
actions.zil   actions.zap
              zork2str.zap
actions.cmp
dungeon.cmp
  • zork2.errors is the transcript of the X-ZAP assembler
Assembling ZORK2.XZAP.10


Inserting ZORK2FREQ.XZAP.5 (  616 bytes)
Inserting ZORK2DAT.ZAP.1   (17170 bytes)
Inserting DUNGEON.ZAP.1    (    0 bytes)
Inserting SYNTAX.ZAP.1     (    0 bytes)
Inserting MACROS.ZAP.1     (   42 bytes)
Inserting CLOCK.ZAP.1      (  197 bytes)
Inserting MAIN.ZAP.1       (  628 bytes)
Inserting PARSER.ZAP.1     ( 4076 bytes)
Inserting DEMONS.ZAP.1     (  277 bytes)
Inserting CRUFTY.XZAP.7    (   89 bytes)
Inserting VERBS.ZAP.1      ( 9969 bytes)
Inserting ACTIONS.ZAP.1    (32301 bytes)
Inserting ZORK2STR.ZAP.1   (17699 bytes)
17850 bytes of preload.

83128 bytes (82K).
244 objects.
147 globals.

XZAP assembles the zork2.xzap file (version 10). The given size 83128 equals 64 bytes header plus the sum of 616, 17170, up to 17699 bytes. The filenames are in TOPS-20 naming convention (see CHAPTER 4, "FILE SPECIFICATIONS" of the TOPS-20 User's Guide). In my GitHub repository MEM2TeX are PDF versions of the TOPS-20 User's Guide and TOPS-20 Commands Reference Manual.

  • zork2.xzap

When we look into zork2.xzap we can see it just includes all the other ZAP and XZAP files.

        .INSERT "ZORK2FREQ"
        .INSERT "ZORK2DAT"                      ; DATA IS IN THIS FILE
        .INSERT "DUNGEON"
        .INSERT "SYNTAX"
        .INSERT "MACROS"
        .INSERT "CLOCK"
        .INSERT "MAIN"
        .INSERT "PARSER"
        .INSERT "DEMONS"
        .INSERT "CRUFTY"
        .INSERT "VERBS"
        .INSERT "ACTIONS"
        .INSERT "ZORK2STR"
        .END
  • zork2.zap

In zork2.zap the only difference to zork2.xzap is the missing first line:

        .INSERT "ZORK2FREQ"
  • zork2freq.xzap

The frequent words file defines the word frequency table with the 96 most common words:

        .FSTR FSTR?1,"the "        ;1642      821
        .FSTR FSTR?2,"The "        ;1122      374
        .FSTR FSTR?3,"You "        ;573       191
        .FSTR FSTR?4,"and "        ;548       274
        .FSTR FSTR?5,"There "      ;545       109
        .FSTR FSTR?6,", "          ;498       498
...
        .FSTR FSTR?51,"balloon "   ;84        14
        .FSTR FSTR?52,"Frobozz "   ;84        12
        .FSTR FSTR?53,"I "         ;83        83
        .FSTR FSTR?54,"it "        ;80        80
...
        .FSTR FSTR?92,"Nothing "   ;63        9
        .FSTR FSTR?93,"as "        ;60        60
        .FSTR FSTR?94,"south "     ;60        15
        .FSTR FSTR?95,"wooden "    ;60        12
        .FSTR FSTR?96,"narrow "    ;60        12


;word frequency table of 96 most common words

WORDS:: .TABLE
        FSTR?1
        FSTR?2
        FSTR?3
...
        FSTR?94
        FSTR?95
        FSTR?96
        .ENDT

        .ENDI

In ZAP: Z-language Assembly Program Joel M. Berez explains in section 3.3 "String Handling Pseudo-ops" the .FSTR <string> pseudo operation:

.FSTR <string>

Generates a string for the frequently used word table (FWORDS). First does a .STR <string>, except that <string> is not searched for fword substrings. Then adds the string to the table of fword substrings. All .FSTRs should be in the 32-word table following FWORDS::.

The difference to our table is the name is WORDS and it's size was extended to 96 words.

  • zork2.zil

Later we will see, how ZILCH is called to compile zork2.zil.

zork2.zil identifies itself with

<PRINC "Loader/ ZORK II: The Wizard of Frobozz
">

as the loader of the other files the story consists of. It defines the Muddle routine IFILE which includes and compiles the given file and creates the corresponding ZAP file, and calls IFILE for each ZIL file to include.

"ZORK2 for
                      Zork: The Wizard of Frobozz
                 The Great Underground Empire (Part 2)
        (c) Copyright 1981 Infocom, Inc.  All Rights Reserved.
"
...
<OR <GASSIGNED? INSERT-CRUFTY>
    <DEFINE INSERT-CRUFTY (STR) <IFILE .STR T>>>

<DEFINE IFILE (STR "OPTIONAL" (FLOAD? <>) "AUX" (TIM <TIME>))
        <INSERT-FILE .STR .FLOAD?>>
...
<IFILE "DUNGEON" T>

<PROPDEF SIZE 5>
<PROPDEF CAPACITY 0>
<PROPDEF VALUE 0>

<IFILE "SYNTAX" T>
<ENDLOAD>
<IFILE "MACROS" T>
<IFILE "CLOCK" T>
<IFILE "MAIN" T>
<IFILE "PARSER" T>
<IFILE "DEMONS" T>
<INSERT-CRUFTY "CRUFTY">
<IFILE "VERBS" T>
<IFILE "ACTIONS" T>
...

INSERT-CRUFTY is used to handle some files in a special way. If it is not overwritten (re-defined) then it behaves as a normal IFILE.

  • crufty.zil

crufty.zil contains routines (THIS-IT? and I-LANTERN), which should be compiled with the extended (or debugged) version of ZILCH. Later when we compare the given crufty.xzap with the file crufty.zap our ZILCH generates we will see (so the hope) why.

  • zorkdat.zap

To understand the ZAP output one must understand, how ZIL is translated into ZAP.

ZIL or the Zork Implementation Language is implemented by the ZILCH program written in Muddle. ZIL is documented in Learning ZIL (by Steven Eric Meretzky) and A "ZIL Course" by Marc S. Blank (October 1982). Muddle is documented in "The MDL Programming Language" by S. W. Galley and Greg Pfister.

Here is how Marc Blank describes "The Z System" in his ZIL Course:

At the highest level is Z Implementation Language (ZIL), which is an interpreted language running under MDL. Since ZIL is a MDL subsystem, all of the debugging features of MDL itself can be used in the creation and debugging of INTERLOGIC games. ZIL code is run through the ZIL Compiler (ZILCH) producing Z Assembly Language code which is, in turn, assembled by the Z Assembler Program (ZAP) into machine-independent Z-codes. These Z-codes can be run on any target machine which sports[sic!] a Z-machine emulator (ZIP).

ZIL defines on one side some structure building only forms, like OBJECT, ROOM and SYNTAX and on the other side the code creating form ROUTINE (look up the term FORM in "The MDL Programming Language").

When we look at the following ZIL files, we will only see data structure building forms. The data structures appear as tables in the output.

ZIL file ZILCH forms used
dungeon.zil OBJECT and ROOM
syntax.zil SYNTAX and SYNONYM

The structures built and variables used are output into the file zork2dat.zap.

  • dungeon.zap and syntax.zap

This is the reason why dungeon.zap and syntax.zap only looks like this:

        .ENDI
  • main.zap

All the other ZAP files contains the compiled ZIL ROUTINEs, e.g. main.zap:

        .FUNCT  GO
START::

?FCN:   CALL    QUEUE,I-WIZARD,4
        PUT     STACK,0,1
        CALL    QUEUE,I-LANTERN,200
        PUTP    BALLOON,P?VTYPE,RAIRBIT
        PUTP    BUCKET,P?VTYPE,RBUCKBIT
        PUTP    SEWL,P?SIZE,P?EAST
        PUTP    SWWL,P?SIZE,P?WEST
        PUTP    SSWL,P?SIZE,P?SOUTH
        PUTP    SNWL,P?SIZE,P?NORTH
        SET     'LIT,1
        SET     'WINNER,ADVENTURER
        SET     'HERE,INSIDE-BARROW
        SET     'P-IT-LOC,HERE
        SET     'P-IT-OBJECT,0
        FSET?   HERE,TOUCHBIT /?CND1
        CALL    V-VERSION
        CRLF
?CND1:  MOVE    WINNER,HERE
        CALL    V-LOOK
        CALL    MAIN-LOOP
        JUMP    ?FCN


        .FUNCT  MAIN-LOOP,ICNT,OCNT,NUM,CNT,OBJ,TBL,V,PTBL,OBJ1,TMP,?TMP1
?PRG1:  SET     'CNT,0
        SET     'OBJ,0
        SET     'PTBL,1
        CALL    PARSER >P-WON
        ZERO?   P-WON /?ELS5
...

ZIL routines contain Z codes i.e. Z Machine instructions and pseudo opcodes which controls the ZAP assembler. Joel M. Berez documented ZAP in ZAP: Z-language Assembly Program.

The original ZIP specification describing all Z machine instructions is here: https://github.com/heasm66/YZIP-Specifications/blob/master/source/spec-yzip.pdf. Henrik Åsman has a nice new PDF version here: https://github.com/heasm66/YZIP-Specifications/blob/master/yzip%20specifications.pdf.

David Fillmore has a good compilation of the standards here http://www.frobnitz.co.uk/zmachine/ and here http://www.frobnitz.co.uk/zmachine/infocom/.

  • actions.cmp and dungeon.cmp

The two compare files actions.cmp and dungeon.cmp are not needed for the compilation, but they allow a glimpse into the directory naming and system used for the work on this story.

actions.cmp:

;COMPARISON OF SS:<ZORK2.R22MAC>ACTIONS.ZIL.524 AND SS:<ZORK2.R22MAC>ACTIONS.ZIL.526
...

dungeon.cmp:

;COMPARISON OF SS:<ZORK2.R22MAC>DUNGEON.ZIL.297 AND SS:<ZORK2.R22MAC>DUNGEON.ZIL.299
...

We can say the system used was probably TOPS-20, the logical name was PP: and the files were in the directory ZORK2 and subdirectory R22MAC.

Now we know which files we need feed ZILCH with:

zork2.zil  includes
 |
 +- dungeon.zil
 +- syntax.zil
 +- macros.zil
 +- clock.zil
 +- main.zil
 +- parser.zil
 +- demons.zil
 +- crufty.zil
 +- verbs.zil
 +- actions.zil

To run ZILCH Muddle is needed

To run ZILCH we need a Muddle interpreter or a Muddle compiler. Unfortunately there is no running real Muddle on current platforms (Linux, Mac, Windows). A year ago I tried to run ZILCH on top of

  • ZILF 0.8, the Zork Implementation Language of the Future with deactivated ZIL stuff to use the Muddle part only and also tried the
  • 'Confusion', a MDL interpreter Matthew T. Russotto wrote to run the mainframe Muddle Zork. Quoting from Matthew's description:

    For those poor souls still stuck in dawn of IF history, I present "Confusion" -- a MDL interpreter which works just well enough to play the original Zork all the way through.

Unfortunately both interpreters have some incompatibilities so I got stuck.

To run Muddle ITS on PDP-10 is needed

To check the (in)compatibilities of some constructs between the interpreters I used the original mainframe Muddle, which appeared on my radar in the meantime.

The ITS Muddle 56 is a reconstruction - we don't have complete ITS code or binaries for any version of Muddle, so Adam T. Sampson and Lars Brinkhoff reconstructed it from the TOPS-20 version.

It runs on the famous ITS created and used by the MIT hackers in the dawn of the computer era.

The ITS operating system was brought back to light from the lost treasures of DEC tapes by a group of enthusiasts around Lars Brinkhoff which documents their efforts here: https://github.com/PDP-10

The problem was this Muddle has no working <SORT ... and ZILCH uses it at four places:

# grep -n SORT zilch.mud.188
430:   <SORT ,L? .V 2>
901:   <SORT <> .ZSTRS 1 0 .WORDS>
1276:   <MAPF <> ,LIST-ATOM <SORT <> <REST .UVEC>>>>
1286:   <MAPF <> ,LIST-ATOM <SORT <> .UVEC>>>

The ITS Muddle wants to load an external SORTX "overlay", which simply is not preserved.

:muddle
MUDDLE 56 IN OPERATION.
LISTENING-AT-LEVEL 1 PROCESS 1
<SORT <> [sort me now]>$

*ERROR*
UNASSIGNED-VARIABLE
SORTX
GVAL
LISTENING-AT-LEVEL 2 PROCESS 1

On summer holiday A.D. 2020 I wanted to implement an own version of <SORT ..., but the specification is rather complicated (cf. section 7.6.3.2 SORT in "The MDL Programming Language" by S. W. Galley and Greg Pfister) and while scanning the current Muddle GitHub repositories at https://github.com/PDP-10/muddle for additional clues I found this: https://github.com/PDP-10/muddle/blob/master/mim/development/mim/vax/mimlib/sortx.mud The current ITS Muddle 56 does not understand the <PACKAGE ... concept, so I deleted the corresponding lines and renamed the subroutine <SORT ... to <SORTEX ... and changed the calls to <SORT ... in ZILCH.MUD accordingly. It didn't work at first, so I took the opportunity to use one debugging tool described in The MDL Programming Environment by P. David Lebling: Section 3.6. "Execution Tracing". After I found the implementation for <TRACE ... in trace.mud, nstruc.mud and pprint.mud from an older ITS Muddle implementation, first I FLOADed the files in the file z2.mud (the bootstrap file which calls ZILCH):

<FLOAD "PPRINT MUD">
<FLOAD "NSTRUC MUD">
<FLOAD "TRACE MUD">
...
<FLOAD "SORT MUD">

Then I activated the tracing for some constructs

<TRACE NTH>
<TRACE SORTEX>
<TRACE CHECKUP>
<TRACE PRINC>
<TRACE OPEN>
<TRACE CLOSE>

and could so fix some problems in the stolen <SORTEX ....

SORT fixes

Farther I had major problems with a failing garbage collector. Fortunately the problems almost completely disappeared thanks to the efforts of Adam T. Sampson, so I could remove my GC workarounds.

Preparing Virtual Linux Host(s)

ITS runs on different PDP-10 emulators. I chose the klh10 because it has a more or less stable FTP access into ITS. The FTP transfers are not very stable. Sometimes I had to try several times to PUT or GET a file.

Linux Distributions

I use to two Linux distibutions in a VMWare-Workstation. Normally I work on Ubuntu, but the ITS build failed for me, so I used Debian to compile the emulators and build ITS and transferred the directory to Ubuntu.

rob@ubuntu:~$ uname -a
Linux ubuntu 5.3.0-64-generic #58-Ubuntu SMP Fri Jul 10 19:33:51 UTC 2020 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
rob@ubuntu:~$ screenfetch
...
OS: Ubuntu 19.10 eoan
Kernel: x86_64 Linux 5.3.0-64-generic
...

using for build
pi@debbie:~/itsnew$ uname -a
Linux debbie 3.16.0-10-amd64 #1 SMP Debian 3.16.70-1 (2019-07-22) x86_64 GNU/Linux
pi@debbie:~/itsnew$ screenfetch
...
OS: Debian 8.11 jessie
Kernel: x86_64 Linux 3.16.0-10-amd64
...

Preparing ITS

Cloning the ITS Repo

rob@debian:~$ cd ~rob
rob@debian:~$ git clone https://github.com/PDP-10/its itsnew

Compiling the Emulator and Building ITS from Source

rob@debian:~$ cd itsnew
rob@debian:~/itsnew$ make EMULATOR=klh10
rob@debian:~/itsnew$ cd ..
rob@debian:~$ tar czvf itsnew.tgz itsnew

Transfer itsnew.tgz to ubuntu.

On ubuntu:

rob@ubuntu:~$ tar zxvf itsnew.tgz
rob@ubuntu:~$ cd itsnew
rob@ubuntu:~/itsnew$ ./start

Starting and Stopping ITS

The Incompatible Timsharing System (ITS) is idiosyncratic and it takes time to getting used to it.

If you stumble over it in the docs: Pressing the ALTMODE key, means pressing the ESC key. This will be echoed as a $ character.

Let's start ITS, login and create a user folder.

KLH10 2.0l (MyITS) built Aug 29 2020 11:40:02
    Copyright (c) 2002 Kenneth L. Harrenstien -- All Rights Reserved.
This program comes "AS IS" with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY.

...
Emulated config:
	 CPU: KS10   SYS: ITS   Pager: ITS  APRID: 4097
	 Memory: 512 pages of 1024 words  (SHARED)
	 Time interval: INTRP   Base: OSGET   Quantums: OSVIRT
	 Interval default: 60Hz
	 Internal clock: OSINT
	 Other: CIRC JPC DEBUG PCCACHE CTYINT IMPINT EVHINT
	 Devices: RH11 RPXX(DP) TM03 DZ11 CH11 LHDH(DPIMP)
...
KLH10#
KLH10# ; Define IMP for PI on ITS.JOSS.COM
KLH10# devdef imp  ub3   lhdh   addr=767600 br=6 vec=250 ipaddr=192.168.1.100 gwaddr=192.168.0.45
KLH10#
...
KLH10# [EOF on dskdmp.ini]

Here we type

KLH10# go
Starting KN10 at loc 04000...

 DSKDMP

Now we can load and start ITS with

its<ENTER>
<ESC>g
its
$G

Salvager 261

CRASH has no files, User File Directory DELETED

[dpimp: ifc "tun0"]
[dpimp:   tun 192.168.1.32]
[dpimp:   GUEST 192.168.1.100]

IT IS NOW  2:13:41 PM EDT, SATURDAY, AUG 29,2020

DB ITS 1650 IN OPERATION AT 14:13:41
DB ITS 1650 SYSTEM JOB USING THIS CONSOLE.
 LOGIN  TARAKA 0 14:13:42

DB ITS.1650. DDT.1547.
TTY 0
You're all alone, Fair share = 2%
Welcome to ITS!

For brief information, type ?
For a list of colon commands, type :? and press Enter.
For the full info system, type :INFO and Enter.

Happy hacking!

I type CTRL-Z and login as rob:

rob$u

The system says:

DB: ROB; ROB MAIL - NON-EXISTENT DIRECTORY
 LOGIN  ROB    0 14:14:03

I need an user directory, so I create one:

:print rob;..new. (udir)
DSK: ROB; ..NEW. (UDIR) - FILE NOT FOUND
DSK: DIR ROB    CREATED BY  ROB    HACTRN  14:14:31

Now I set the terminal type and create a ROB LOGIN file, which will be executed at next login.

:tctyp aaa page=25 width=79 scroll
:cwd rob
:emacs rob login
:tctyp aaa page=25 width=79 scroll
^X^S
^X^C
^F
DB   ROB
FREE BLOCKS #0=13701
  0   ROB    LOGIN  1 ! 8/29/2020 14:15:26
*

Now logout and re-login:

$$u
 LOGOUT ROB    0 15:35:59

DB ITS 1650 SYSTEM JOB USING THIS CONSOLE. 15:35:59
^Z
DB ITS.1650. DDT.1547.
TTY 0
You're all alone, Fair share = 1%
Welcome to ITS!

For brief information, type ?
For a list of colon commands, type :? and press Enter.
For the full info system, type :INFO and Enter.

Happy hacking!
rob$u
:KILL
*

Now shut down ITS:

*:lock
 LOCK.156
_5down
DO YOU REALLY WANT THE SYSTEM TO GO DOWN?
y
ROB    LOCK   SYS    DOWN   MAIL   WRITE  19:32:52

PLEASE ENTER A BRIEF MESSAGE TO USERS, ENDED BY ^C
^C
CULPRIT =  ROB    LOCK   19:32:54

_
DB ITS going down in 5:00
q
:KILL
DB ITS going down in 4:55
*$$u
DB ITS 1650 NOT IN OPERATION AT 19:33:11
PFTHMG DRAGON CHANNA _DRGN_ TIMES  WRITE  19:33:11
PFTHMG DRAGON CHANNA LOGOUT TIMES  DELRNM 19:33:11

And wait for

SHUTDOWN COMPLETE
PI LEVEL 7 BUGDDT.  TYPE <ALTMODE>P TO CONTINUE.
YOU ARE NOW IN DDT.
BUGPC/   CAIA COFFI4+1   $Q-2/   JRST COFFI7

Now type CTRL-\ to get the emulator console.

BUGPC/   CAIA COFFI4+1   $Q-2/   JRST COFFI7   [HALTED: FE interrupt]
KLH10> quit
Are you sure you want to quit? [Confirm]y<ENTER>
Shutting down...Bye!
rob@ubuntu:~/itsnew$

OK, now we can start and stop ITS so we are ready to create a new directory, FTP all the needed ZILCH and the Zork II files into it and bring ZILCH into life again after all this years.

Learning the ITS Basics

Now is a good time to read some user documentation:

Preparing ZILCH and ZORK II

Included Files

src file taken from
z.mud to create save file DSK:Z2; Z SAVE
z2.mud to call <ZILCH ... directly
zilch.mud https://github.com/PDP-10/zil/blob/master/zork.z/zilch.mud.188
https://github.com/PDP-10/zil/blob/master/zork.z/zstr.mud.2
macros.mud macros.zil
sort.mud https://github.com/PDP-10/muddle/blob/master/mim/development/mim/vax/mimlib/sortx.mud
trace.mud https://github.com/PDP-10/muddle/blob/master/mim/development/mim/vax/mimlib/trace.mud
nstruc.mud https://github.com/PDP-10/muddle/blob/master/mim/development/mim/vax/mimlib/newstruc.mud
pprint.mud https://github.com/PDP-10/muddle/blob/master/MUDDLE/pprint.1
zork2.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
dungeo.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
syntax.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
macros.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
clock.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
main.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
parser.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
demons.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
crufty.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
verbs.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip
action.zil https://eblong.com/infocom/sources/zork2-mac-r22.zip

Changes Made

The best way to see the changes I made is to look at the diffs, e.g.

kdiff3 origfiles\zork.z.zilch\zilch.mud.188 src\zilch.mud
kdiff3 origfiles\mimlib\sortx.mud src\sort.mud
kdiff3 origfiles\mimlib\trace.mud src\trace.mud
kdiff3 origfiles\zork2-mac-r22.zil\zork2.zil src\zork2.zil

In ZILCH I added the missing VERIFY opcode:

...
       <ADD-OP RESTART 0 0 <> <>>
       <ADD-OP QUIT 0 0 <> <>>
       <ADD-OP VERIFY 0 0 T <>>
       <ADD-OP RSTACK 0 0 <> <>>
       <ADD-OP FSTACK 0 0 <> <>>
...

Transferring All Files to ITS

Create a new directory Z2

*^F
DB   ROB
FREE BLOCKS #0=13955
  0   ROB    LOGIN  1 ! 8/29/2020 14:15:26
*:print z2;..new. (udir)
DSK: Z2; ..NEW. (UDIR) - FILE NOT FOUND
DSK: DIR Z2     CREATED BY  ROB    HACTRN  14:16:11

and FTP all the prepared files into.

$ ftp 192.168.1.100
Connected to 192.168.1.100.
220- DB-ITS.EXAMPLE.COM ITS 1650,  FTP server 336 on  4 SEP 2020 2013 EDT
220 Bugs/gripes to BUG-FTP @ MIT-MC
Name (192.168.1.100:rob): z2
230 OK, your user name is Z2
ftp> put "action.zil" "ACTION ZIL"
ftp> put "clock.zil"  "CLOCK ZIL"
ftp> put "crufty.zil" "CRUFTY ZIL"
ftp> put "demons.zil" "DEMONS ZIL"
ftp> put "dungeo.zil" "DUNGEO ZIL"
ftp> put "macros.mud" "MACROS MUD"
ftp> put "macros.zil" "MACROS ZIL"
ftp> put "main.zil"   "MAIN ZIL"
ftp> put "nstruc.mud" "NSTRUC MUD"
ftp> put "parser.zil" "PARSER ZIL"
ftp> put "pprint.mud" "PPRINT MUD"
ftp> put "sort.mud"   "SORT MUD"
ftp> put "syntax.zil" "SYNTAX ZIL"
ftp> put "trace.mud"  "TRACE MUD"
ftp> put "verbs.zil"  "VERBS ZIL"
ftp> put "z2.mud"     "Z2 MUD"
ftp> put "z.mud"      "Z MUD"
ftp> put "zork2.zil"  "ZORK2 ZIL"
ftp> put "zilch.mud"  "ZILCH MUD"
ftp> quit
^F
DB   Z2
FREE BLOCKS #0=13955
*
*^F
  0   ACTION ZIL    25 ! 8/29/2020 14:16:29
  0   CLOCK  ZIL    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:17:35
  0   CRUFTY ZIL    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:17:50
  0   DEMONS ZIL    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:17:51
  0   DUNGEO ZIL    15 ! 8/29/2020 14:17:51
  0   MACROS MUD    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:18:20
  0   MACROS ZIL    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:18:21
  0   MAIN   ZIL    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:18:21
  0   NSTRUC MUD    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:18:23
  0   PARSER ZIL    7 ! 8/29/2020 14:18:25
  0   PPRINT MUD    3 ! 8/29/2020 14:18:38
  0   SORT   MUD    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:02
  0   SYNTAX ZIL    3 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:03
  0   TRACE  MUD    2 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:08
  0   VERBS  ZIL    10 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:11
  0   Z      MUD    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:29
  0   Z2     MUD    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:30
  0   ZILCH  MUD    16 ! 8/29/2020 14:20:30
  0   ZORK2  ZIL    1 ! 8/29/2020 14:21:13

When you use a different directory name, change the last line in the file Z MUD to reflect your choice:

<SAVE-IT ("Z" "SAVE" "DSK" "Z2")>
                            ^^

Running ZILCH

Kill all running background jobs first with :massacre

*:massac

From Save File

The first possibility is to prepare a save file with ZILCH, restore it and call ZILCH. We put all we need to make a Z SAVE file into Z MUD:

:print z mud

<SET RECCHN ,OUTCHAN>
<SET ZCHN ,OUTCHAN>

<NEWTYPE NULL LIST>
<SETG NULL #NULL <>>

<DEFINE SETUP-EX ()
        <FLOAD "SORT MUD">
        <FLOAD "ZILCH MUD">
        <FLOAD "MACROS MUD">
        <SETG INSERT-CRUFTY T>>

<DEFINE SAVE-IT ("OPTIONAL"
        (FILE '("PUBLIC" "SAVE" "DSK" "GUEST"))
        "AUX" (SNM ""))
        <SETUP-EX>
        <COND (<=? "SAVED" <SAVE !.FILE>>
               "Saved.")
              (T
               <PRINC "ZILCH ready.">
               <CRLF>)>>

<SAVE-IT ("Z" "SAVE" "DSK" "Z2")>

Now make the save file:

*:muddle
MUDDLE 56 IN OPERATION.
LISTENING-AT-LEVEL 1 PROCESS 1
<FLOAD "Z MUD">$
"DONE"
<QUIT>$
*^F
DB   Z2
FREE BLOCKS #0=13697
...
  0   Z      SAVE   61 ! 8/30/2020 19:57:32
...

Now we can use it to compile ZORK2:

*:muddle
MUDDLE 56 IN OPERATION.
LISTENING-AT-LEVEL 1 PROCESS 1
<RESTORE "Z SAVE">$
ZILCH ready.
"DONE"
<ZILCH "ZORK2">$

ZIL Debugging Compiler 4.5
--------------------------
Input file: ZORK2.ZIL
Loader/ ZORK II: The Wizard of Frobozz

Input file: DUNGEON.ZIL

Input file: SYNTAX.ZIL

Input file: MACROS.ZIL

Compiling routine: ZPROB
Global reference: LUCKY
Code length: 1 bytes.
Compilation time: 0.21781587 seconds.
Compiling routine: PICK-ONE
Code length: 1 bytes.
Compilation time: 0.32100200E-1 seconds.
Input file: CLOCK.ZIL
     ... many lines removed ...
Compiling routine: BOTTOM-ETCHINGS-F
Code length: 0 bytes.
Compilation time: 0.14342880 seconds.
Compiling routine: CUBE-F
Code length: 0 bytes.
Compilation time: 0.15155982 seconds.
 ** Warning, Undefined Routine: T
Vocabulary: 627
Prepositions: 18
         ACROSS
         AROUND
         AT
         AWAY
         BEHIND
         DOWN
         FOR
         FROM
         IN
         OFF
         ON
         OUT
         OVER
         THROUGH
         TO
         UNDER
         UP
         WITH
Objects: 244
         ADVENTURER
         ALICE-TABLE
         AQUARIUM
         AQUARIUM-ROOM
         ARCANA
         BALLOON
     ... many lines removed ...
         WIZARD
         WIZARD-CASE
         WIZARDS-QUARTERS
         WIZARDS-WORKSHOP
         WORKBENCH
         WORKBENCH-ROOM
         ZORK3
         ZORKMID
Properties: 28
         P?ACTION
         P?ADJECTIVE
         P?CAPACITY
         P?CROSS
     ... many lines removed ...
         P?TEXT
         P?UP
         P?VALUE
         P?VTYPE
         P?WEST
Globals: 140
         ALWAYS-LIT
         BALLOON-DOWNS
         BALLOON-FLOATS
         BALLOON-UPS
         BANK-SOLVE-FLAG
         BASE-SCORE
     ... many lines removed ...
         WIZQDESCS
         WIZQLAST
         WON-FLAG
         YUKS
         ZGNOME-FLAG
Total code length: 417 bytes.
ZILCH finished in 332.92018 seconds.#NULL ()
<QUIT>$

Directly

We can run ZILCH without a save file, too.

First prepare the file Z2 MUD

:print z2 mud

<SET RECCHN ,OUTCHAN>
<SET ZCHN ,OUTCHAN>

<FLOAD "SORT MUD">

<NEWTYPE NULL LIST>
<SETG NULL #NULL <>>

<FLOAD "ZILCH MUD">
<FLOAD "MACROS MUD">

<SETG INSERT-CRUFTY T>

<ZILCH "ZORK2">

and then we FLOAD it:

*:massac
*:cwd z2
*:muddle
MUDDLE 56 IN OPERATION.
LISTENING-AT-LEVEL 1 PROCESS 1
<FLOAD "Z2">$
g <-- here I typed g
      to suppress the display of **MORE**
      after each screen of output
ZIL Debugging Compiler 4.5
--------------------------
Input file: ZORK2.ZIL
Loader/ ZORK II: The Wizard of Frobozz

Input file: DUNGEON.ZIL
     ... many lines removed ...
Compiling routine: CUBE-F
Code length: 0 bytes.
Compilation time: 0.15118408 seconds.
 ** Warning, Undefined Routine: T
Vocabulary: 627
Prepositions: 18
         ACROSS
         AROUND
         AT
         AWAY
     ... many lines removed ...
         UNDER
         UP
         WITH
Objects: 244
         ADVENTURER
         ALICE-TABLE
         AQUARIUM
         AQUARIUM-ROOM
         ARCANA
         BALLOON
     ... many lines removed ...
         WIZARD
         WIZARD-CASE
         WIZARDS-QUARTERS
         WIZARDS-WORKSHOP
         WORKBENCH
         WORKBENCH-ROOM
         ZORK3
         ZORKMID
Properties: 28
         P?ACTION
         P?ADJECTIVE
         P?CAPACITY
         P?CROSS
     ... many lines removed ...
         P?TEXT
         P?UP
         P?VALUE
         P?VTYPE
         P?WEST
Globals: 140
         ALWAYS-LIT
         BALLOON-DOWNS
         BALLOON-FLOATS
         BALLOON-UPS
         BANK-SOLVE-FLAG
         BASE-SCORE
     ... many lines removed ...
         WINNER
         WIZ-DOOR-FLAG
         WIZQDESCS
         WIZQLAST
         WON-FLAG
         YUKS
         ZGNOME-FLAG
Total code length: 417 bytes.
ZILCH finished in 332.90143 seconds."DONE"
<QUIT>$

Sometimes, using this direct method, I get a Memory Protection Violation:

 ** Warning, Undefined Routine: T
MPV; 723564>>HLRZ 13,-1(1)   13/   -1,,400003   532204/   ??

Then I try one of this two workarounds:

  • tweak the <BLOAT ... line in zork2 zil from

    <BLOAT 70000 0 0 2700 0 0 0 0 0 256>
    

    e.g. to

    <BLOAT 90000 0 0 2900 0 0 0 0 0 256>
    
  • put one or more <GC> calls between the <IFILE ... includes:

    <IFILE "SYNTAX" T>
    <ENDLOAD>
    <IFILE "MACROS" T>
    <IFILE "CLOCK" T>
    <IFILE "MAIN" T>
    <GC>
    <IFILE "PARSER" T>
    <GC>
    <IFILE "DEMONS" T>
    ;<INSERT-CRUFTY "CRUFTY">
    <IFILE "CRUFTY" T>
    <GC>
    <IFILE "VERBS" T>
    <IFILE "ACTIONS" T>
    
    <GC 0 T>
    

Reviewing Output

At first glance we can see in the ZILCH output, that the counting of bytes used by the compiled routine code is broken. However, this has no effect on the compiled code.

Now we can get all the ZAP files down from ITS and compare them with the given preserved ones.

$ ftp 192.168.1.100
Connected to 192.168.1.100.
220- DB-ITS.EXAMPLE.COM ITS 1650,  FTP server 336 on  4 SEP 2020 2236 EDT
220 Bugs/gripes to BUG-FTP @ MIT-MC
Name (192.168.1.100:rob): z2

When we login as z2 we are automatically in subdir Z2

230 OK, your user name is Z2
ftp> mget *

and rename the files afterwards or

ftp> get "ACTION ZAP"   "action.zap"
ftp> get "ACTION ZIL"   "action.zil"
ftp> get "CLOCK ZAP"    "clock.zap"
ftp> get "CLOCK ZIL"    "clock.zil"
ftp> get "CRUFTY ZAP"   "crufty.zap"
ftp> get "CRUFTY ZIL"   "crufty.zil"
ftp> get "DEMONS ZAP"   "demons.zap"
ftp> get "DEMONS ZIL"   "demons.zil"
ftp> get "DUNGEO ZAP"   "dungeo.zap"
ftp> get "DUNGEO ZIL"   "dungeo.zil"
ftp> get "MACROS MUD"   "macros.mud"
ftp> get "MACROS ZAP"   "macros.zap"
ftp> get "MACROS ZIL"   "macros.zil"
ftp> get "MAIN ZAP"     "main.zap"
ftp> get "MAIN ZIL"     "main.zil"
ftp> get "NSTRUC MUD"   "nstruc.mud"
ftp> get "PARSER ZAP"   "parser.zap"
ftp> get "PARSER ZIL"   "parser.zil"
ftp> get "PPRINT MUD"   "pprint.mud"
ftp> get "SORT MUD"     "sort.mud"
ftp> get "SYNTAX ZAP"   "syntax.zap"
ftp> get "SYNTAX ZIL"   "syntax.zil"
ftp> get "TRACE MUD"    "trace.mud"
ftp> get "VERBS ZAP"    "verbs.zap"
ftp> get "VERBS ZIL"    "verbs.zil"
ftp> get "Z2 MUD"       "z2.mud"
ftp> get "Z MUD"        "z.mud"
ftp> get "ZORK2D ZAP"   "zork2d.zap"
ftp> get "ZORK2S ZAP"   "zork2s.zap"
ftp> get "ZORK2 ZIL"    "zork2.zil"
ftp> get "ZILCH MUD"    "zilch.mud"
ftp> get "ZORK2 ZAP"    "zork2.zap"
ftp> quit

When we trim the original ZAP file basenames to 6 characters and compare them to the generated ones, we notice they are identical with two exceptions.

  • First: crufty.zap: crufty diffs

    This is probably why crufty was compiled in a different way resulting in an XZAP file.

  • Second: zork2dat.zap: Three missing lines at end of zork2dat.zap:

            .ENDT
    
    ; END LOAD                           \
    ENDLOD::                              > missing lines
    ; PURE TABLES ARE DEFINED HERE       /
    
    	.ENDI
    

Compiling with ZILF

Let's try to build it with ZILF. I use Windows 7 here. First get and build ZILF:

cd C:\storage\project\if\
mkdir zilf-0.9
hg clone https://foss.heptapod.net/zilf/zilf
cd zilf
dotnet msbuild Build.proj -t:PackageAllRids -p:Configuration=Release

Copy all ZAP files created by ZILCH to out/ directory and rename the following ones from the ITS six characters to their full length:

># cd C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out
C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># move ACTION.ZAP ACTIONS.ZAP
C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># move DUNGEO.ZAP DUNGEON.ZAP
C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># move ZORK2D.ZAP ZORK2DAT.ZAP
C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># move ZORK2S.ZAP ZORK2STR.ZAP
C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># dir
ACTIONS.ZAP
CLOCK.ZAP
CRUFTY.ZAP
DEMONS.ZAP
DUNGEON.ZAP
MACROS.ZAP
MAIN.ZAP
PARSER.ZAP
SYNTAX.ZAP
VERBS.ZAP
ZORK2.ZAP
ZORK2DAT.ZAP
ZORK2STR.ZAP

Try to build with ZAPF:

C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># C:\storage\project\if\zilf-0.9\zilf\Package\Release\Stage\zilf-0.9.0-win-x64\bin\Zapf.exe zork2.zap
ZAPF 0.9
Reading zork2.zap
Reading ZORK2DAT.zap
Reading DUNGEON.zap
Reading SYNTAX.zap
Reading MACROS.zap
Reading CLOCK.zap
Reading MAIN.zap
Reading PARSER.zap
Reading DEMONS.zap
Reading CRUFTY.zap
Reading VERBS.zap
Reading ACTIONS.zap
Reading ZORK2STR.zap
MeasuringZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
.ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
.ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258

error: required global symbol 'WORDS' is missing

Failed (1 error)

OK, create an empty frequent words file:

C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out># type zork2word.xzap


;word frequency table of 96 most common words

WORDS:: .TABLE
        .ENDT

        .ENDI

Add a new first line to ZORK2.ZAP:

        .INSERT "ZORK2WORD"

Try another time:

C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out>C:\storage\project\if\zilf-0.9\zilf\Package\Release\Stage\zilf-0.9.0-win-x64\bin\Zapf.exe zor
k2.zap
ZAPF 0.9
Reading zork2.zap
Reading ZORK2WORD.xzap
Reading ZORK2DAT.zap
Reading DUNGEON.zap
Reading SYNTAX.zap
Reading MACROS.zap
Reading CLOCK.zap
Reading MAIN.zap
Reading PARSER.zap
Reading DEMONS.zap
Reading CRUFTY.zap
Reading VERBS.zap
Reading ACTIONS.zap
Reading ZORK2STR.zap
MeasuringZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
.ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
.ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258

Assembling
ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
Wrote 93630 bytes to zork2.z3

Try the resulting story file zork2.z3 with Windows Frotz:

ZORK II: The Wizard of Frobozz
Copyright 1981 by Infocom, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ZORK is a trademark of Infocom, Inc.
Release 42 / Serial number 200905

Inside the Barrow
You are inside an ancient barrow hidden deep within a dark forest. The barrow opens into a narrow tunnel at its southern end. You can see a faint glow at the far end.
A sword of Elvish workmanship is on the ground.
A strangely familiar brass lantern is lying on the ground.

>zork
At your service!

>$VERIFY
Verifying game...
Game correct.

>

Let's try the original zork2freq.xzap. Copy it to out/, change the first line in zork2.zap to

        .INSERT "zork2freq"

and ZAPF it once more

C:\storage\project\if\zilch.github\out>C:\storage\project\if\zilf-0.9\zilf\Package\Release\Stage\zilf-0.9.0-win-x64\bin\Zapf.exe zor
k2.zap
ZAPF 0.9
Reading zork2.zap
Reading zork2freq.xzap
Reading ZORK2DAT.zap
Reading DUNGEON.zap
Reading SYNTAX.zap
Reading MACROS.zap
Reading CLOCK.zap
Reading MAIN.zap
Reading PARSER.zap
Reading DEMONS.zap
Reading CRUFTY.zap
Reading VERBS.zap
Reading ACTIONS.zap
Reading ZORK2STR.zap
MeasuringZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
.ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
.ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258

Assembling
ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258
Wrote 82932 bytes to zork2.z3

The resulting story file zork2.z3 is now about 10 kB smaller

93630 bytes with dummy frequent words file
82932 bytes with the original frequent words file
10698 bytes smaller

And it works as well.

Documenting ZILCH

Since ZILCH delivers quite reasonable results, the work on its documentation is justified and also with regard to its historical significance. Let's make ZILCH: The Program.

Future Perspectives

Looking into

  • zil.mud.176 the "ZIL Interpreter/Table Generator"
  • zip.mud.96 the Zork Interpreter Program
  • zap.mud.171 the Zork Assembler Program

ToDo

  • document macros.mud
  • use Debian only (because of problems with Ubuntu)
  • test current Debian distribution
  • look for the reason for the zapf warning: ZORK2DAT.zap:945: warning: incorrect table size: expected 2357, actual 2258

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How to bring ZILCH back to life again.

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