Ensoniq - PC File Types

Question: I have been to the Ensoniq site and downloaded the EDE (Ensoniq Disk Extractor) program, which works fine. I have also tried to download some files, and these have a file extension of .gz (which I have never seen before - I was expecting EDA or something like that ?) I cannot copy these to an Ensoniq formatted disk and there's no point putting it on a PC disk. Can anyone explain what I'm missing or doing wrong please?

A good review of Ensoniq files in PC format is in order, as well as an explanation of different compression formats. First, we'll answer your question. You need to decompress the file - it is GZipped (see below). We recommend the WinZip program. You will then have a .GKH file. This can be put on floppy disk by a program called EPSDisk or by the Ensoniq Disk Tools program by Rubber Chicken Software.

Popular Ensoniq-PC Disk formats/Extensions Giebler Disk Image

Gary Giebler of Giebler Enterprises introduced this file format. It contains a 512 byte header, and afterwards it contains the exact contents of the Ensoniq Disk File. However, within the header there is a "skip table", that lists which blocks (a set of 512 bytes) contain all 0's, and which contain data. That way the file is only as large as it as to be. EPS images use the .EDE extension (maximum 1585 blocks), and ASR images use the .EDA extension (maximum 3167 blocks).

Giebler File Image

Gary Giebler of Giebler Enterprises introduced this file format. It really is a 512 byte header, and afterwards it contains the exact contents of the Ensoniq File. It can be an Instrument, Bank, Sequence, Song, Macro, System-Exclusive, Effects, or Backup File. EPS files use the .EDE extension, and ASR files use the .EDA extension. NOTE: the differences between an EPS and ASR file-type are minimal. Really, it specifies if the file has pertinent information relating to new parameters within the 16-Plus/ASR, or that the type of effect is and ASR or 16-Plus.

.GKH Image

This format is the oldest, developed by a guy named Goh King Wah (what a name - thus the G K H format). It is a short header, followed by the exact contents of the Ensoniq file. There is no skip table, and the bytes do not follow 512 byte boundaries. To make it more confusing, files with this extension MAY BE A DISK IMAGE OR FILE IMAGE OF EPS OR ASR TYPE. So, you might have a .GKH file, but it could be an image of a DS/HD disk, and if you try to put it on a DS/DD disk, it won't work. Generally, .GKH's should be Disk Images, and .INS files are File Images.

.INS File Image

The .INS file extension was implemented by Michael Chen, the author of EPSDisk, a program that put together many of Goh King Wah's programs. Michael needed a file type that would represent a File Image, and since by that time the Giebler utilities had come, he adapted the exact same header, but used a different extension. So a .INS file is exactly the same format as a .EFE/.EFA.

.WAV Files

This format was developed by Microsoft (who else). Sound within a PC uses mostly .WAV files. Think of it this way - it is the PC's sound file format. It is also called the RIFF format.

Popular PC compression formats PKZip compression

PKWare introduced this industry-standard compression format with their PKZIP line of DOS products. These are hugely popular, and represent the .zip extension for files. Many advanced functions are available, such as disk-spawning, password protection, and more.

GZIP compression

GZip comes from the UNIX world, which has it's own type of compression. GZip is reportedly better for the Internet, since it likes certain character sets and not others. Unfortunately, this butts head-on with the more used and popular PKZip compression format. GZip files typically have the last digit in the extension replaced by the letter z - in the Ensoniq world, a .GKH file would become a GKZ file. Upon decompression, the file is replaced by a decompressed .GKH file. Gzipped also may be denoted like this example: sound.gkh.gz

NOTE: We highly recommend one of the absolute best and most well thought-out programs in Windows, WinZip. The people who made PKZip, PKWare, made the horrible mistake of never making a Windows version of their product. So an innovative person/company named Nico-Mak Computing made a Windows product that used their own compression algorithm that was compatible with the PKZip format. Not only that, the program is a dream to use. Even better, the program later encompassed the other compression formats, like GZIP, LZH, and others.

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