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minimicrite
November 7th, 2006, 07:31 PM
I'm in the writing stage of my PhD, and need something less distracting than my laptop for just writing the meat of the thing. I've got a TRS-80 Model 100 that should be perfect for the job, except...how to transfer files easily between my Mac and the Model 100?

I have USB-serial adapters (both Mac & PC serial variety), and Z-Term is good terminal emulator, so I guess I need the "CompLink" cable from Club100.org. What then?

I was looking at the AlphaSmart's, but $250? I can't justify that.

Thanks much in advance!

chuckcmagee
November 7th, 2006, 10:32 PM
A standard Male DB25 to Female DB9 Null Modem cable should do it, assuming the USB serial deal has a Male DB9 on one end like mine does.

Not sure if Mac stuff has a bunch of formatting info embedded in the document. If it does, it's going to be very strange looking on the M100. Personally, I don't think that idea will work very well. I could be wrong.

I do have a M100, a M102, a NEC PC-8201 and a 8201A so know what I'm talking about somewhat.

daflory
November 7th, 2006, 10:38 PM
Hi,

I'm a writer and have similar needs in a computer. I'm refurbing a Tandy 1100FD for the same purpose. These were good machines, but they shipped with defective floppy motor belts, and even a vintage one would need work. Of course, once it's working, I can just save to a 720KB disk...your situation is obviously more complicated.

You could try connecting the Mac USB/serial adapter to the compulink and see if you can get Z-term to work.

My main worry is that early computers relied on hardware handshaking lines that may or may not be properly implemented in USB/serial adapters. You might only be able to talk to a "real" RS-232 port on a PC.

Considering how important easy backup of your dissertation is, my gut feeling is that you should look at later model mini-laptops.

You might want to look at some of the last production MS-DOS floppy only laptops. Toshiba, HP, and some others made solid machines that had good screens and keyboards and would run for a long time with a new battery.

Even an obsolete Windows system can be made lightning fast if you load it with PC-DOS 7 and Wordperfect 5.1, or even Win98SE (which would let you use USB drives for backup too).

You might also like one of the out-of-production Windows CE mini-notebooks, which booted instantly from ROM.

I enjoy problems like this, so if you have any other questions please post back.

Regards,

Dave

Terry Yager
November 8th, 2006, 09:01 AM
Don't know 'bout the Mac stuff, but I've never had any problem transfering text files between the M-100 and a PC, using suitable null-modem cableage, and running Telcom on the 100, and DOS on the other end (using the 'COPY' command).

--T

chuckcmagee
November 8th, 2006, 09:41 AM
Yes, I too transfer "plain text files" between a PC and the M100 daily lately. I know "Word" and "WordStar" both use strange embedded sequences for the fancy stuff (like Fonts, etc. etc.) It is extremely likely the Mac software does the same. Those kinds of files are not going to look normal trying to use the program TEXT on them.

I suppose you could export the document to a plain text file before doing the transfer. You would lose all the formatting info doing that.

Terry Yager
November 8th, 2006, 10:27 AM
I think the poster is going the other way round - writing the paper on the M-100, and then transfering the plaintext to the Mac, for formatting, etc. Control codes and such wouldn't be a problem in that case.

--T

minimicrite
November 9th, 2006, 01:29 PM
Sorry for ignoring my own thread for a couple of days. I'll be doing transfer both ways from the m100, but probably more to the Mac.

Under MS Word 2004, I have an option to save as "Text Only (MS-DOS)", which says it saves text without formatting & uses ANSI character set. Would this avoid any weirdness? Or, better yet, copy & paste from Word into Pico, and save that as a text file, then send that to the m100?

I'll see if I can locate my 25-pin adapter this weekend; I know where my 9-pin cable and null model adapter are. (That's all I need, correct?).

You all have been a great help. Maybe when I get this degree done I'll dig out my own vintage computer collection :D

chuckcmagee
November 9th, 2006, 01:58 PM
Save as text will work perfect. Be aware that you lose formatting info when you do that (all the fancy Word stuff).

Just do the "save as", cut and paste sounds like more work, granted, not much more.

chuckcmagee
November 9th, 2006, 02:00 PM
Oh ya, yes, a DB9 to DB25 adapter will do it. Both end of the adapter will need to be male, I think.

Also, use the xon/xoff stuff on both sides. 19200 baud would be "98N1ENN" on the M100 xterm stat thing.

daflory
November 9th, 2006, 02:11 PM
I'll see if I can locate my 25-pin adapter this weekend; I know where my 9-pin cable and null model adapter are. (That's all I need, correct?).


Post back if you can (or can't) get the USB-to serial to work. I've curious to know if they can properly emulate the hardware handshaking needed on systems like the M100.

Best of luck,

Dave

chuckcmagee
November 9th, 2006, 02:19 PM
Dave, the USB to Serial "dongle" I use works perfect already. I use XON/XOFF all the time myself. Some null modem cables loopback the handshake signals, so hardware handshake has no chance of working with those kinds of cables.

Terry Yager
November 9th, 2006, 03:13 PM
Oh ya, yes, a DB9 to DB25 adapter will do it. Both end of the adapter will need to be male, I think.

Also, use the xon/xoff stuff on both sides. 19200 baud would be "98N1ENN" on the M100 xterm stat thing.

IIRC, the M-100/102 does not support Xon/off protocol. That feature is only implemented in the NEC version of TELCOM.

Also, the display is only able to do 1200-baud or less during file transfer.

--T

daflory
November 9th, 2006, 03:15 PM
Dave, the USB to Serial "dongle" I use works perfect already. I use XON/XOFF all the time myself. Some null modem cables loopback the handshake signals, so hardware handshake has no chance of working with those kinds of cables.

Thanks. That's good to know. I've always been a bit suspicious of USB...

chuckcmagee
November 9th, 2006, 05:02 PM
Well, in that case, it would be the Null Modem cable that's at fault, not the USB converter.

chuckcmagee
November 9th, 2006, 06:58 PM
IIRC, the M-100/102 does not support Xon/off protocol. That feature is only implemented in the NEC version of TELCOM.

Also, the display is only able to do 1200-baud or less during file transfer.

--T


Hehe, ok, as one who used it daily in a biz environment (you), you would certainly know that stuff.

Terry Yager
November 10th, 2006, 01:22 PM
You can do file transfers at faster speeds, you just can't follow the d/l on screen.

--T