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View Full Version : Picked up an IBM 5170, need some upgrade advice



DaveJustDave
April 5th, 2017, 09:12 AM
Recently picked up a new old stock 5170. Bone stock just the way I like to start.

I've got a mountain of parts to go into the machine. The goal is a bit of a paradox. I want to expand the machine as far as it'll go while still retaining it's soul.

Some things will stay period correct (EGA and EGA monitor).

I do want to preserve the 30mb hard drive though so I want to remove it from the system and go IDE

I have a future domain IDE controller with its own BIOS. It's dual channel so I'll be running an old Conner ide drive (small enough not to need LBA even though the controller supports LBA).

Option 1. Install the ide controller, disable the MFM HDD controller and remove the MFM drive. The problem is I'm looking at the IBM controller and I don't see any way to disable the drive, just change the address.

Option 2. I prefer not to go this route because at this point I would have removed too much of the original machine. Install the future domain IDE controller, remove the IBM controller and IO card, install a clone ide multi IO card (disable the ide on THAT card since I have the future domain card ) and use it just to drive the floppy's and serial parallel. Not sure how the IBM setup or gsetup would react to that. Perhaps I'd have to swap out the original IBM bios as well ..Which at that point I've got this Frankenstein 5170 bastardization....Which is totally reversible , so I'm not sure if that's the worst thing.
Thanks in advace

krebizfan
April 5th, 2017, 09:44 AM
Why can you not use the clone multi-IO card? Keep the existing serial+parallel card; set the ports on one card to COM2: and LPT2:. Two serial ports lets you have a mouse and a free port; two parallel ports lets you have both a Zip drive and a Laplink connection available without having to rearrange the cabling every time you change uses.

As far as I know, you will have to remove the MFM card. I didn't get it to work when I tried having both MFM and IDE in the same AT.

Stone
April 5th, 2017, 09:44 AM
Option 1. Install the ide controller, disable the MFM HDD controller and remove the MFM drive. The problem is I'm looking at the IBM controller and I don't see any way to disable the drive, just change the address.You can remove the MFM HDD controller and replace it with a floppy only controller form an XT or PC.

Chuck(G)
April 5th, 2017, 10:12 AM
Many ISA IDE controllers included a floppy controller as well. Perhaps you can locate one of those to save slots.

DaveJustDave
April 5th, 2017, 10:18 AM
Because I need the FDD controller. The 5170 drive controller is both MFM and fdd


Why can you not use the clone multi-IO card? Keep the existing serial+parallel card; set the ports on one card to COM2: and LPT2:. Two serial ports lets you have a mouse and a free port; two parallel ports lets you have both a Zip drive and a Laplink connection available without having to rearrange the cabling every time you change uses.

As far as I know, you will have to remove the MFM card. I didn't get it to work when I tried having both MFM and IDE in the same AT.

modem7
April 5th, 2017, 02:16 PM
Lots of IBM 5170 information at minuszerodegrees.net


As far as I know, you will have to remove the MFM card. I didn't get it to work when I tried having both MFM and IDE in the same AT.
Presumably, you had one controller set as primary and the other set as secondary. Then, per the diagram at [here (http://minuszerodegrees.net/hdd/HDD%20controllers%20-%20XT%20versus%20AT.png)], you would have to factor into the solution that whilst the 5170's IBM BIOS can interact with a primary-addressed controller, it cannot interact with a secondary-addressed controller. So, some sort of software driver would be required for the secondary controller.


You can remove the MFM HDD controller and replace it with a floppy only controller form an XT or PC.
Depending on the BIOS revision, what may need be considered is the annoyance described in the 'POST error of 601' section at [here (http://minuszerodegrees.net/5170/problems/5170_known_problems_issues.htm)].

lutiana
April 5th, 2017, 06:49 PM
Need a RAM expansion card for it? I have a few that may interest you.

I agree with what others have said here, you will most likely need to yank that MFM controller, so you'll need to get a floppy controller (I have a few of those too). But you'll want a bigger more reliable drive in there anyway.

Let me know how that Future Domain controller works in there, I have one of those as well and if it works well on yours I may ditch the XT-IDE bios in favor of it.

IMO Franken 5170 is A-ok, just so long as it looks stock on the outside and the franken bits add substantial functionality while keeping the main bits (the motherboard and CPU).

DaveJustDave
April 5th, 2017, 07:40 PM
Thanks I have an Intel aboveboard 8mb ready to go in. Huge stack of parts.. Paradise EGA card, 80287, 1.44mb 3.5, going to add sdhc secondary storage to go with the ide primary drive, awe32, mt32, the works.

Trixter
August 22nd, 2017, 08:17 PM
Dave, did you ever get an IDE drive working in your 5170? If so, what combination of hardware and software worked?

DaveJustDave
November 6th, 2017, 07:56 PM
Yes, I picked up a generic IDE controller
https://www.ebay.com/itm/ISA-Controller-IDE-HD-FLOPPY-I-O-Parallel-Serial-Game-Cooling-Fan-Card-Retail/332362933425

and replaced my OEM IBM BIOS with a custom QuadTel bios that a friend burned for me. It works, HOWEVER its limited to a maximum size.. chances are whatever IDE drive you use it's big enough that you won't be able to address the entire capacity.

I tried using an EIDE controller and it simply would NOT work on the 5170.



Dave, did you ever get an IDE drive working in your 5170? If so, what combination of hardware and software worked?

jafir
August 8th, 2018, 09:47 AM
chances are whatever IDE drive you use it's big enough that you won't be able to address the entire capacity.

I know this was over a year ago, but have you tried using ez-drive software? I remember back in the 90's I got a brand new 560MB IDE drive for an old hand-me-down 386 I bought from a guy on a BBS, and I couldn't see more than 538MB or something like that. After I installed the ez-drive, I could use the full drive. If you ever needed to boot from floppy, you could press a certain key when it was booting so that it would load the driver/bios patch from the HDD, and then it boot the floppy with full access to the drive.