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Thread: Powertran Cortex

  1. #931

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    I like this project!
    Enter My Mind At Your Own Risk!

  2. #932

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    *drool*

  3. Default

    Hello:

    Just when you thought it was safe, Paul Ruizendaal and I thought we might port the Unix V6 system to the TI-990 minicomputers (990/10, 990/10A and 990/12) and the Powertran Cortex using the TMS9995 and extended memory. A pre-built DS50 disk image and source tar balls are on my web site:

    http://www.cozx.com/dpitts/ti990.html

    I've run it under my TI-990 simulator, sim990, and on real hardware.

    It needs more work. So, if you'd like to join in the "fun"....

  4. #934

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    After a long time there was finally a weekend to spend on hobby things. Happy to report that native tcp/ip for the Cortex and TI990 seems within reach.

    Working from the code written by Rob Gurwitz in 1981 (the original code written for 4BSD, before Bill Joy's rewrite), I ended up with a tcp/ip stack that has about 25KB of code and needs some 20KB of data, mostly buffers. When run as a user program using loopback it appears to work; it required some compiler fixes on longs and bit fields, things that were not exercised well (or at all) before.

    I think this code can be integrated into the kernel as a 2nd kernel process with very limited thunking between the kernel proper and the network stack. The idea is that it would communicate over a serial line with a PC acting as an ISP - much like you would dial out over a modem to an ISP in the early 90's. Heck, if your ISP still supports dial-up, that should work too.

    Time remains scarce and there are other hobby projects too, so this will not arrive soon but a navigable path seems to exist.
    Last edited by pnr; September 27th, 2016 at 01:36 AM.

  5. #935

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    Quote Originally Posted by pullmandave View Post
    It needs more work. So, if you'd like to join in the "fun"....
    That sounds very interesting. For what it is worth I decided to participate RetroChallenge 2016/10 with a project that will be hard - if not impossible - to complete in a month, but if I do get it done it could potentially be another platform where one could run Unix V6 and I'd certainly be interested in looking into it. I've run the previous version on the Cortex Mini and it is very cool.

    Below is the link to my competition entry - note that in the comments Bob wrote in about some TMS990 software that could be interesting to you guys.
    https://hackaday.io/project/15430-rc...g-tms99105-cpu

    And in case you don't know about the competition, here is the link to it:
    http://www.wickensonline.co.uk/retrochallenge-2012sc/

    The competition entry is still open if you want to participate, and the rules are very open. I think the site nicely describes the competition as follows:
    "While the RetroChallenge has its competitive side, itís not really a contestÖ itís more like global thermonuclear war ó everyone can play, but nobody really wins."

  6. #936

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    Quote Originally Posted by pnr View Post
    After a long time there was finally a weekend to spend on hobby things. Happy to report that native tcp/ip for the Cortex and TI990 seems within reach.
    That is very cool. As this starts to work over a serial line (which is great), it should not be too hard to connect some actual Ethernet hardware to one of these computers.

  7. #937

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    I will post a quick update here too, I did get the TMS99105 based TI-99/4A clone to work.
    There is a discussion about this at AtariAge.

    The project link above to Hackaday describes the status of the system.

  8. #938

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    Quote Originally Posted by pullmandave View Post
    I thought we might port the Unix V6 system to the TI-990 minicomputers (990/10, 990/10A and 990/12) and the Powertran Cortex using the TMS9995 and extended memory.
    If it'll run on a cortex, what about a geneve?
    Want to buy or trade for: SBCs, trainers, development kits

  9. #939
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Southampton, UK
    Posts
    165

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    Quote Originally Posted by nuxi View Post
    If it'll run on a cortex, what about a geneve?
    I don't think it is running on a Powertran Cortex at the moment - but on Paul's Mini-Cortex design. This has some extra hardware - memory protection and CF Card interface - that is used by the Unix implementation, and is not present on the Powertran Cortex or Geneve. So I suspect further software development would be needed.

  10. Default

    I've run it under my TI-990 simulator, sim990, and on real hardware.

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