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View Full Version : The IBM 5140 with a Xircom PE3 and a LPT ZIP or HDD



Shadow Lord
July 29th, 2013, 11:00 AM
Hello All,

I've tried researching this to the best of my ability but have not found any definitive answers that I like (which maybe the real issue ;)).

I have a 5140 with the optional LPT port cart/attachment. My plan had been to use an old LPT Zip 100 (or if I ever found a cheap one an LPT HDD) for storage. Recently, after the discussion on using a WiFi bridge I got the bug to get the darn thing online using WiFi in a Starbucks. Yes, very geeky.

So I dug out my old Xircom PE3 to use for networking but this would use up my one LPT port. First thought was: "No problem" I'll just add another LPT cart. But I can't find any info on how to assign it to another port address and the one piece of info I found seems to indicate (http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/showthread.php?27545-IBM-5140-ISA-Bus-connector&p=197419#post197419) that I am limited to one port only.

So next thought was to just daisy chain the Xircom behind the ZIP drive/HDD. However, that seems to be a no no (http://www.brutman.com/Dos_Networking/xircom_pe3.html) as well.

However, there is no indication as to why. Has anyone actually tried daisy chaining one of these off of a zip drive (or any HW for that matter)?

Short of going to a "Serial to WiFi bridge" any recs on how I may get this setup to work? Thanks!



EDIT: One other option would be to use a "Network Boot Drive (http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/showthread.php?35261-Network-drive-boot-testers-wanted!)" but that would limit me to staying at home for mass storage as I am not sure if there are any VPN clients for DOS.

k2x4b524[
July 29th, 2013, 01:12 PM
why not just get the pin-out of the isa connector on the back and build an adapter to a couple of ISA cards, doll it up in a matching case and mount it on top.

Shadow Lord
July 29th, 2013, 01:41 PM
why not just get the pin-out of the isa connector on the back and build an adapter to a couple of ISA cards, doll it up in a matching case and mount it on top.

You mean something like this (http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/showthread.php?27545-IBM-5140-ISA-Bus-connector)? ;) Honestly this is beyond me technically and even if it wasn't it would not be portable enough for surfing at the Starbucks! I would of course buy one in a heart beat if the community developed one.

k2x4b524[
July 29th, 2013, 03:06 PM
that's exactly what i meant, and as far as portability, the 5140 is bigger than most any modern portable anyway, so why not go all out? I would, just to blow those iHippie punks away with my geek-fu. Heck, you'd probably even draw a crown at first, ya know, those "I've never heard of such a thing"; or my personal favorite, the "I had one of those / I still have one of those, i didn't know it could do that". Heck if you had the prowess, make a small one slot expansion box, big enough for one car and the wifi bridge, COMPLETELY enclose it, so nothing can be seen, it would look stock, like it was meant to, THEN go surfing with it :)

Shadow Lord
July 30th, 2013, 10:04 AM
I may have found a solution: The Xircom Parallel Port Multiplexer. Supposedly the drivers for the PE3 are intelligent enough that when paired up to one of these they can send LAN data to the PE3 and other data to the second port on the multiplexer. I am hoping a zip drive can be driven off of it and not just a printer....

billdeg
July 31st, 2013, 06:31 AM
I have an interesting piece of software to connect a 5140 to a Series/1 server (3130 emulation). The laptops were used by techs to connect to the Series/1. If this is useful to you to learn how to connect to another network although it'll not be an easy task to convert to tcpip per se - download here:
http://vintagecomputer.net/ibm/Series1/IBM_Series1_3101_Emulation.zip

Let me know if this works for you.

Shadow Lord
July 31st, 2013, 07:11 AM
I have an interesting piece of software to connect a 5140 to a Series/1 server (3130 emulation). The laptops were used by techs to connect to the Series/1. If this is useful to you to learn how to connect to another network although it'll not be an easy task to convert to tcpip per se - download here:
http://vintagecomputer.net/ibm/Series1/IBM_Series1_3101_Emulation.zip

Let me know if this works for you.

Thanks for the disk Bill. I dled it but I am not sure if I'll ever get it to use it. Setting up TCP/IP should be easy enough with MS Client. The biggest issue is fitting things on one disk (which won't be a problem if I can use a ZIP drive as a HDD) and memory. Luckily my 5140 has the full 640KB of memory (I believe the max for this system) so there is a good chance it will all run.... Maybe ;)

billdeg
July 31st, 2013, 07:36 AM
not reading everyone's posts but have you tried setting up an ATTRIB/PATH statement in your autoexec.bat to effectively merge B and A drives' files (gives you 1.44 MB)? You can un-zip some data into a RAM drive as well pushing you another 256K or so before you start running into issues with running your software. Disk space is not the only issue though if you're trying to use software made for 386/486.

If it were me, I'd attempt to piggy-back a raspberry PI somehow using the PI's SSH Sever (you have to enable this on the PI) and Lynx for DOS. Use terminal emulation connection to get to the PI from the 5140, and let the PI do the TCPIP with a wireless dongle thing to the outside world. Never did this myself, but it should somehow be possible. The PI is small enough to be velcro-ed to the 5140.

Shadow Lord
July 31st, 2013, 07:53 AM
not reading everyone's posts but have you tried setting up an ATTRIB/PATH statement in your autoexec.bat to effectively merge B and A drives' files (gives you 1.44 MB)? You can un-zip some data into a RAM drive as well pushing you another 256K or so before you start running into issues with running your software. Disk space is not the only issue though if you're trying to use software made for 386/486.

If it were me, I'd attempt to piggy-back a raspberry PI somehow. Use terminal emulation connection to get to the PI from the 5140, and let the PI do the TCPIP with a wireless dongle thing. You'd use ProComm from the 5140 or similar to make a direct LAN connection to the PI. Never did this myself, but it should somehow be possible.

That is an option I have considered, i.e. splitting the files across two 720KB disks. That may get me through the client setup but I'd still have to get other SW going w/ lots of disk swaps. I can tell you the drives on these computers are very finicky so if I can setup a "external HDD" it would be far easier. I'll know soon enough if a ZIP drive can be driven off of the multiplexer using PalmZIP drivers.

The SW should all run on the 8088 (MS client does for sure, and Mike Brutman has had the Xircom running on his 5140 so packet drivers and NDIS drivers should be good to go). mTCP of course runs on an 8086 and above. It would be interesting to see if I could get Lynx and/or DOS Pine to work. I am not sure if WATT/TCP would work on an 8086 as I've only run them on a 486 and above before Win95 standardized things a bit...