A Basic Lisa Utility

BLU is a Basic Lisa Utility. It runs on Apple Lisa base hardware without an operating system, and implements a few operations in support of the various operating systems that run on Lisa.

Some uses for BLU

create a Lisa floppy disk from a disk image transferred from another computer

create an image of a Lisa floppy disk or hard disk and transfer it to another computer

“low level format” an Apple parallel port hard disk

copy one hard disk to another


BLU is licensed for your use, free of charge by Sigma Seven Systems Ltd., with no warrantee of any kind. BLU may not work as described. Using BLU may cause loss of data and have undesirable and undocumented effects. Use of BLU is at your own risk.

BLU is copyright 2013 by James MacPhail, portions copyright by Ray Arachelian. All rights are reserved.


BLU V0.90 manual: BLU Manual

Download Options

If you have a Macintosh with a floppy disk drive, you can make a BLU floppy disk using Apple DiskCopy 4.2 (available elsewhere): choose download “(X) - DiskCopy 4.2 disk image stuffit archive” below, and extract the disk image using Stuffit Expander (available elsewhere).

If you don’t have a way to make a Lisa floppy disk, choose download “(Y) - DiskCopy 4.2 disk image zip archive” below and see “Appendix A Bootstrapping” in the BLU manual.

If you have an X/ProFile™, a *nix OS, and some knowledge of the dd command, you may be able to make a BLU X/ProFile™ CF card with download “(Z) - X/ProFile CF card dd image zip archive” below. This image has BLU in the Even STAR; the Odd STAR is an unused 5MB ProFile image. To use the 5MB image requires a CF card of 32MB or greater. However, you can use a CF card as small as 2MB if loading BLU is all you wish to use it for.

Latest Version

BLU V0.90 download formats

(X) - DiskCopy 4.2 disk image stuffit archive: BLU090.dc42.sit

(Y) - DiskCopy 4.2 disk image zip archive:

(Z) - X/ProFile CF card dd image zip archive:

Previous versions

BLU V0.10 download formats

DiskCopy 4.2 disk image stuffit archive: BLU010.dc42.sit

DiskCopy 4.2 disk image zip archive:

X/ProFile CF card dd image zip archive:

Outstanding Bugs and Issues

Priam DataTower support does not include the tape drive

Twiggy image files work fine for archiving & duplicating with BLU, but if "interpreting" the image (eg. to extract files) note: it has been found that many Twiggy images appear to have the tracks on the second side in reverse order (ie. when examined, the operating system's first track on the second side is the innermost one, which appears last in the image as BLU considers the outermost track as the first one). This is a result of the twiggy drivers of different operating systems using the tracks on the second side in opposite orders.

Revision History

V0.90 Build date - 2013/2/24

Added support for Priam DataTower hard disk

Accept ‘Z’ as ‘Y’ when a Y/N response is required (For German keyboards)

Reading a hard disk to the serial port no longer sends an extra $200 bytes

An IDEfile Widget partition is recognized as a Widget

A partial image can be saved if “read from disk to serial port” is canceled

Widget LLF offset initialized to 0

V0.10 Build date - 2012/6/21

Added Widget LLF and extended power off delay to give Widgets time to park

Added Terminal Test

V0.08 Build date - 2012/6/16

Added function for floppy disk head cleaning

Made Read Varying Speed interactive

Added Interleave Timing debug function

V0.07 Build date - 2011/12/6

First version distributed

Updated on 2016-05-18

Copyright 2016, Sigma Seven Systems Ltd. All rights reserved.

X/ProFile is a trademark of Sigma Seven Systems Ltd.

Other trademarks are of their respective owners.