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jakand
June 15th, 2006, 10:42 AM
Hi all! I'm trying to restore an old IBM PC XT.

The machine runs well, but I've not the right software to set and retrieve the clock from an addictional card inside of it.

The card name is "SIGMA DESIGNS MAXIMIZER CARD".

Please, does anyone have the floppy or floppys with program/s to control this card?


Thanks, Giacomo

jakand
June 15th, 2006, 10:50 AM
P.S. The card also have a parallel port, one or two serial ports, 384 kB RAM expansion. But those works without any driver needed.

Thanks again, Giacomo

modem7
June 15th, 2006, 11:17 PM
I knew those XT clock drivers I archived in the 80's might come in handy!

To help identify which is the right one for your card (hoping that one of them matches your card), let me know which RTC chip is used on the card. It's easy to identify for RTC cards. It's the chip that roughly measures 12mm x 32mm.

The 8167 chip was the commonest one I saw (eg. MM58167AN, UM82C8167, etc.)

If the chip you identify for me doesn't help me, I'll just send you all six of my drivers (with instructions) and you can try each one.

modem7
June 15th, 2006, 11:20 PM
Forgot to mention. Identifying the chip may only partially help, because different cards using the same chip could have the chip addressed at different I/O ports, etc.

It's a start.

modem7
June 16th, 2006, 12:21 AM
I found the archived drivers faster than I thought.
They're in the attached ZIP file.
Try them one by one.

Something to note. You may think, "I won't get a new battery for the board yet. I'll just first prove that I can set and retrieve the date/time, then I'll buy a new battery." The problem with that approach is that some RTC cards have the battery directly connected to the RTC chip (instead of via a diode). In that case, if the battery is very low, it will prevent the RTC chip from working at all (even with the XT turned on - supplying power to the card via the 8 bit slot).

jakand
June 16th, 2006, 03:20 AM
Thank you for your help.

I'd replaced the battery a month ago, using a new battery with same voltage and capacity, but different diameter (the original is very old and in shops they told me is not produced anymore).

I'll try these files as soon as possible (next week I'll come doctor, and I've not time now to take my vintage XT out from its box, and load the files in an old 486 to put them in a 5 1/4 360 kB disk), and then I'll tell you if they work and what's the exact chip code.

Giacomo

modem7
June 16th, 2006, 07:39 PM
If none of those six drivers work, there are lots on Internet sites that have old MS-DOS tools/utilities/etc.
For example, http://www.eunet.bg/simtel.net/msdos/sysutl.html has ZIP files with a description like 'Many useful DOS utilities'. They may contain the driver you need.

If you are unsuccessful, you might want to try using a DS1216E chip. One of the moderators of this forum, mbbrutman, has a web site for the PCjr that details fitting a DS1216E into a PCjr. See http://www.brutman.com/PCjr/DS1216E.html For the XT, the only difference I can think of is that on the XT motherboard, the ROM that would get piggibacked would be U19 (addressed range = F0000-F7FFF).

mbbrutman
June 16th, 2006, 07:53 PM
And for anybody who needs help with the DS1216E, or slightly different software to accomodate a different ROM BIOS address range, contact me off-line.

The 1216E is an excellent solution ...

jakand
June 17th, 2006, 01:55 AM
This chip is a good idea, but are you sure that it will not create hardware/software conflicts on my XT?
I mean, it's the first time I see this kind of solution for the clock, and I'd like know if someone tested it on an 5150 or 5160 or similar machines.

Giacomo

mbbrutman
June 17th, 2006, 06:09 AM
Read my write-up at http://www.brutman.com/PCjr/DS1216E.html for details on how the chip works.

Basically, the chip uses no address space and no I/O ports. It is invisible unless a magic 64 bit sequence is strobed on the address lines. It is kind of hard for it to cause a conflict, which is due to a very clever design. If it works on a PCjr, it will surely work on almost anything else.