View Full Version : External Everex tape drive

November 15th, 2008, 06:25 PM
To me it looks like a QIC-02 configuration but I have never figured out the differences between QIC-XX and QIC-YY. :p
Anyways I picked it up from a guy down the street who was moving. It's an Everex EX-830 external tape drive (also known as the Excel 250) as well as the cable and the 8-bit ISA EV-833 tape controller. I turn the drive on and for starters I get no smoke and feeding it a tape gives me no self-destructing roller like I had with my Apple Tape Backup 40SC (which I have since repaired).
Now comes the real problem. There is a bank of jumpers on the card (for IRQ, DRQ and DACK...whatever that is) but there is also one bank of unmarked dip switches and two or three more jumper blocks that are also unmarked.
I plugged the thing into my PC portable and so far from what I find is that there is no BIOS on the thing (however there is an EEPROM on the card but that could be for anything) and nothing that distinctively tells the computer that there is even a tape controller installed so either I'm doing something wrong (I'm looking at that block of dip switches) or I need some sort of software (a proprietary backup application?).
Anyone else here worked with either piece of hardware or software?

November 15th, 2008, 07:18 PM
The EV-833 is a QIC-36 tape controller (the "dumb naked" interface; QIC-02 is the smarter brother). Although QIC-36 and QIC-02 tape drives take the same media and have the same 50-conductor connector, they're nothing alike.

The EPROM on the 833 is most likely for the onboard processor that provides the smarts. That 10-position DIP switch sets the base I/O address for the controller. 0x338 is a good default; DMA 3, IRQ 5 are also reasonable defaults.

BSD/386 as well as PICK has drivers for the beast; I suspect that Sytos will also support it.

You can use DC-600XL (DC-6150) tapes in the drive. DC-6250 may also work. Expect one to hold around 150-250 MB.

November 15th, 2008, 11:32 PM
Great! :D
I'll have to root around in my software and see if I have any of the programs you mentioned. I just wish I knew what my dip switches were currently set for.

November 16th, 2008, 09:04 AM
The EV-831 and 833 were pretty much interchangeable, and I believe, drop-in replacements for the Wangtek PC-36 controller. While I don't have docs for the Everex boards, bitsavers does have documentation for the PC-36, which should give you some idea of how to set your switches:


Even better, there's an app note for the PC-36 with the source for a tape exerciser program:


So you should be set.

November 16th, 2008, 09:21 AM
Thanks Chuck.
I'll finish off some chores and give it a try.