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lutiana
June 9th, 2017, 10:07 AM
http://imgur.com/a/MVhqa


A few years back I got what seemed liked a dead IBM 5170 motherboard. I just put it on a shelf and sort of forgot out it until recently.


After some messing around with it I was able to determine that the board was fine, it was just a bad memory chip in Bank 0 which was causing the board to act dead. Replaced the chip and the board was happy and working great. So I decided to turn it into a full IBM AT build.


Took me some time, but I eventually sourced a case (this was by far the hardest thing to do) and pulled together the other parts. I completely lucked out on getting that 12Mb RAM expansion board.


After the case and the board, I turned my sites onto the storage and ultimately decided to go with the XT-IDE Universal BIOS and a 1Gb CF card. So I flashed an EPROM and installed it on a generic network card I had. I had to work out the jumpers on the card through a long trial error process as there was zero documentation I could find on the card.


Once all of that was done, I quickly realized that the IBM BIOS was limiting me to 720Kb on the 3.5" floppy drive, stopping me from booting off of the XT-IDE devices and taking way too long to count all 12Mb of RAM (3+ minutes). So I did some research and found that there are some 3rd party BIOSes that could solve all of these issues for me. I ended up on the AMI 286 BIOS found at minuszerodegree.net, it has a built in setup utility (so no more external DOS utility to set BIOS options) and it allows you to skip the RAM counting by hitting escape.


The specs:
IBM AT, Model 5170. 6Mhz Intel 80286 w/ and Intel 80278XL. 640Kb Base RAM 12,160Kb of extended memory. 1Gb CF card for the C:, 1.44MB and 1.2Mb floppy drives. Running MS-DOS 6.22.


Next Steps:
Add a sound card. Get more software to play with on it. Any suggestions on what I can do to it next?

lyonadmiral
June 9th, 2017, 11:16 AM
Try some OS/2 1.1 or maybe some Unix.

romanon
June 9th, 2017, 11:56 AM
Its up to you but....why? CF card on IBM 5170 is like putting mp3 radio or navigation to 100 years old car veteran. Also other "superfluous improvements" like AMI bios and 12 megs of RAM....If I need 12 megs RAM computer, i build up some 386/486 PC.

lutiana
June 9th, 2017, 12:19 PM
Its up to you but....why? CF card on IBM 5170 is like putting mp3 radio or navigation to 100 years old car veteran. Also other "superfluous improvements" like AMI bios and 12 megs of RAM....If I need 12 megs RAM computer, i build up some 386/486 PC.

CF card is what made the most sense to me. All the spinning drives that I have are 10Gb+ which would have been a complete waste. So I chose the CF card option for it's reliability and ease of removal to dump data onto it with my main system. I did not choose it for speed or performance, though that bit does actually help speed up the system a little bit. Plus I had all the parts already, so why not just use them? Also, I have seen more than a few Ford Model T and Model A cars with MP3 players and GPS navigation systems....

As for the RAM, it was the best value for money I could find. I needed to get it to 640Kb and after looking around I found that card fully populated for $35. So why the hell not? Do I need 12Mb? No, I do not. I am, however, thinking that I could use some of it as a RAM drive just to see how fast I can get games to run or other such things.

Then there is the AMI bios, I did that mainly so I could use the XT-IDE Universal BIOS. There is an issue in the IBM bios that makes it so you cannot boot from a drive plugged into it. If I ditched the XTUB then I would be limited by what the IBM BIOS can support, which is something like 100Mb or less. I don't have any IDE HDDs that small and i did not want to have to deal with putting an MFM drive in there, it would simply not be that reliable. On top of that I am not a fan of having to use a DOS utility to set the BIOS options, it's a PITA. Then there was my desire to be able to use and boot from 1.44mb floppies....

I have reasons for all of my "superfluous improvements" they were contemplated for some time before implemented. They may not keep the machine "true to IBM's design" but they do make the machine infinitely more useable.

EDIT: Added word, I have "seen" more than a few. I don't have a collection of old fords...

romanon
June 9th, 2017, 12:59 PM
I dont know, "more useable" with 6Mhz CPU? I dont think so...Yeah i am supporter of "true to IBM's design" and my opinion when you want more usable vintage machine, you should get some 486 or early pentium machine..
You have nice original IBM machine with quite rare type 1 IBM 5170 motherboard. I'm convinced that if you realy want, you can find somewhere original 20-30 megs hard drive to make it not more usable, but more originaly.

lutiana
June 9th, 2017, 01:07 PM
I dont know, "more useable" with 6Mhz CPU? I dont think so...Yeah i am supporter of "true to IBM's design" and my opinion when you want more usable vintage machine, you should get some 486 or early pentium machine..
You have nice original IBM machine with quite rare type 1 IBM 5170 motherboard. I'm convinced that if you realy want, you can find somewhere original 20-30 megs hard drive to make it not more usable, but more originaly.

But I don't want a 20-30Mb drive in the thing, I wanted something that was 200Mb - 300Mb or more but not into the gigabytes, that way I could load it up with all the software I could ever need. The 256Mb CF card I had did not want to work, so I just went with the 1Gb one I had. Plus adding the CF makes it a million times easier to get data onto the system. To me these things make the system much more useable.


*shrug* nothing I've done is permanent. If I get the bug to make it original, then I can. Though it will never be a "pristine collectors" machine as the case it is in does not match the motherboard at all. So while it's a rev 1 mobo, the case might be from a Rev 1, 2 or 3 (I never checked) but in any event was not the one the board shipped in.

Anonymous Coward
June 9th, 2017, 03:37 PM
The type 1 motherboard is quite rare? That's news to me. I always had more trouble finding a type 3.

Casey
June 9th, 2017, 05:54 PM
I have more than a few Ford Model T and Model A cars with MP3 players and GPS navigation systems....


That must be something to see... :)

In the back of my mind, if I ever get the money, I've thought of picking a beat-up Compaq Portable or Portable II, pulling the CRT & motherboard, and putting in a 7" LCD display with a Pi or microITX board. Something the original power supply won't gag at. Obviously CF storage would be obligatory.

...Just for laughs.

lutiana
June 9th, 2017, 06:18 PM
That must be something to see... :)


Umm, yeah. Good catch left out the word "seen" I really don't have more "than a few" old F



In the back of my mind, if I ever get the money, I've thought of picking a beat-up Compaq Portable or Portable II, pulling the CRT & motherboard, and putting in a 7" LCD display with a Pi or microITX board. Something the original power supply won't gag at. Obviously CF storage would be obligatory.

...Just for laughs.

It'd be a cool project. I actually have a Portable II, have not fired it up in some time, I need to do that sometime.

romanon
June 10th, 2017, 02:08 AM
The type 1 motherboard is quite rare? That's news to me. I always had more trouble finding a type 3.

I dont know, i have 4 pieces of type 3 and only one of type 1
According to my esperiences, earlier revisions are rarer than later.

romanon
June 10th, 2017, 02:14 AM
if I ever get the money, I've thought of picking a beat-up Compaq Portable or Portable II, pulling the CRT & motherboard, and putting in a 7" LCD display with a Pi or microITX board. Something the original power supply won't gag at. Obviously CF storage would be obligatory.

...Just for laughs.

Thats luck that you dont have any, you are not collector but savage :P

nc_mike
June 10th, 2017, 02:35 AM
Its up to you but....why? CF card on IBM 5170 is like putting mp3 radio or navigation to 100 years old car veteran. Also other "superfluous improvements" like AMI bios and 12 megs of RAM....If I need 12 megs RAM computer, i build up some 386/486 PC.

I'll never understand comments like there. There is room to have both 'classic' true-to-original builds and maxed-out builds in each generation. Part of the fun of owning these machines has always been how far they could be pushed. It was true 35 years ago when we were taking apart the first IBM PCs rolling off the line and remains true today. Why anyone takes issue with this make no sense whatsoever.

Mike

SomeGuy
June 10th, 2017, 02:44 AM
I'm curious what type of 286 RAM board has a whopping 12MB on it. (Pics? :D )

When was it made? I have a 4MB ISA ram board in my 286 clone, not that it needed it with 2MB on the MB, but I had originally pulled that board from a 386SX machine.

KenEG
June 10th, 2017, 04:26 AM
Just putting my two cents in on the hard drive vs. CF or DOM discussion. True hard drives die with use and old ones that work are getting rare. All of my vintage computers have DOMs in them. If I get one with a working hard drive, I store the drive to preserve it. My main reason for having.the machines is to play the old games on the correct machine. Having the true CPU and sound card is important to me, but not the hard drive or monitor. I use old flat screens instead of CRTs because they are easier to move around.

I think it all depends on why you are collecting.

lutiana
June 10th, 2017, 12:28 PM
I'm curious what type of 286 RAM board has a whopping 12MB on it. (Pics? :D )

When was it made? I have a 4MB ISA ram board in my 286 clone, not that it needed it with 2MB on the MB, but I had originally pulled that board from a 386SX machine.

As near as I can tell it is an actual IBM card. It has the PN 30F5368 printed on it, but not much else in the way of identifiers. I have added some images to the end of the Imgur (http://imgur.com/a/MVhqa)album of the RAM card.

modem7
June 10th, 2017, 02:18 PM
As near as I can tell it is an actual IBM card. It has the PN 30F5368 printed on it, but not much else in the way of identifiers. I have added some images to the end of the Imgur (http://imgur.com/a/MVhqa)album of the RAM card.
1. Goto http://minuszerodegrees.net
2. IBM 5170 area
3. Link: Some IBM Expansion Cards and Options
4. Link: Enhanced Memory Expansion Adapter


Advertisement: For all your IBM 51xx needs, visit minuszerodegrees.net

lutiana
June 10th, 2017, 02:36 PM
1. Goto http://minuszerodegrees.net
2. IBM 5170 area
3. Link: Some IBM Expansion Cards and Options
4. Link: Enhanced Memory Expansion Adapter


Advertisement: For all your IBM 51xx needs, visit minuszerodegrees.net

Ahh, I thought it might be that one. Well feel free to add my images there if you like, I can email you a high-res version if the one on imgur is not good enough.

Casey
June 10th, 2017, 06:57 PM
Thats luck that you dont have any, you are not collector but savage :P

Oh, I have several working Portables. Might even have the whole list: Portable, Portable Plus, Portable II & III, and Portable 386.


All of them (touch wood) are in good working condition, and there's no way I would ever dismember one for such a project! :(

If, however, I find one with dead innards but a working power supply... That shouldn't be a real issue, but I'm too lazy to work up a converter. Besides, the sound of the P/S fan should help mess with people's heads...

modem7
June 11th, 2017, 02:54 PM
Well feel free to add my images there if you like, I can email you a high-res version if the one on imgur is not good enough.
The main card photo is good enough. I will add it today. Thanks.