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Thread: S100 hard disk controller

  1. #1

    Default S100 hard disk controller

    It seems S100 ST506/412 compatible controllers are hard to find.
    I was wondering, were there projects documented to use the standard
    boards like the Xebec 1410 or Western Digital 1002 on the S100 bus?

    The most intelligence is on those boards themself. So there must be a quite
    simple way to hook up such a controller on the S100 bus. Of course you
    need some boot ROM or a boot floppy which has the hard disk parameters for it.

    I would love to have an old fashion hard disk in one of my S100 machines.
    If there is a well documented DIY project from the old days I would
    love to make my own board.

    Regards, Roland
    Wanted: case for Altair 8800 in good or bad shape or even a replica.

  2. #2
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    The only S-100 hard disk controller that I ever had any experience with was in the Heath/Zenith Z-100 systems. The Z-100 was a cross between a large motherboard system like the Kaypro and Osborne, and it also had the S-100 bus for additional memory and interface boards.

    I currently have a Z-110 version, which was the computer, keyboard, and two floppy disk drives in one (very heavy) box. You have to add an external CRT for composite video display. The only S-100 board in it is the 256K RAM board.

    Unfortunately, I do not have any docs on the hard disk controller, but, being it was from Heath, there should be documentation about it out on the Internet?

    Good luck.

    smp

    UPDATE: Here are some links:

    http://www.s100computers.com/Hardwar...th/HDC/HDC.htm
    http://www.s100computers.com/Hardwar...otherboard.htm
    http://retrotechnology.com/herbs_stuff/z100.html
    http://home.earthlink.net/~z100lifeline/data/IDE.html
    http://home.earthlink.net/~z100lifel...Z100Begin.html
    Last edited by smp; May 13th, 2017 at 01:28 PM. Reason: added the UPDATE...

  3. #3
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    For a time, I ran a WD1001 controller from the S100 bus. It's no big deal--basically a couple of latches and bus receivers. The controller is very simple to communicate with.

  4. #4
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    Yes, not exactly responsive to your request but ... you might find it interesting to look at the Vector Graphic Dual-Mode Floppy & Hard Disk Controller Board. There's one on eBay; search "s100 hard disk controller".

    John Monahan has a schematic online:

    http://www.s100computers.com/Hardwar...Dual%20HDC.htm

    Manual (with a different schematic) here:

    http://maben.homeip.net/static/S100/...Controller.pdf

    Some port information in the Technical Bulletin here:

    http://www.pestingers.net/pdfs/s100-...hnical-bul.pdf
    Last edited by pbirkel@gmail.com; May 14th, 2017 at 12:43 AM.

  5. #5
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    Hi All;

    Advanced Digital Corp., had a Hard Disk Controller, that was quite advanced for it's time..

    http://www.s100computers.com/Hardwar...C/HDC-1001.htm

    THANK YOU Marty

  6. #6

    Default

    It is relatively simple to use an old XT 506 controller.
    It just needs some latches and bus bus buffer.
    I've adapted one to my NC4000 ( non-x86 ).
    If you have a WD-1000 you can use a simple bus buffer.
    You can look at the Olivetti M20 schematics on line for how
    simple it is.
    I made such a buffer for my M20 and used the controller from
    a TRS80 5 Meg drive box ( essentially a WD-1000 ).
    Again, a simple wire wrap project.
    The XT board is the best to use since it has a sector buffer and
    doesn't have any need for interrupts or special timing requirments.
    Dwight

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by smp View Post
    The only S-100 hard disk controller that I ever had any experience with was in the Heath/Zenith Z-100 systems.
    Thanks for the links! I have that Z100 system too. Without hard disk,
    but I have the original documentation for the hard disk controller.
    I wonder how this controller would behave in an other S100 computer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck(G) View Post
    For a time, I ran a WD1001 controller from the S100 bus. It's no big deal--basically a couple of latches and bus receivers. The controller is very simple to communicate with.
    Probably very simple yes. But you have to tell cp/m (or other OS) how to work with it as well...
    I thought there must be some well documented hardware and software for it.
    But maybe the info of the controller manual is enough to use it under CP/M.

    Quote Originally Posted by pbirkel@gmail.com View Post
    Yes, not exactly responsive to your request but ... you might find it interesting to look at the Vector Graphic Dual-Mode Floppy & Hard Disk Controller Board.
    Yes I've seen that one too... But the FDD part seems to be hard sectored.
    And I've no idea how to make those floppy disks... I could not find software for it.
    Otherwise I would buy that card I think...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dwight Elvey View Post
    It is relatively simple to use an old XT 506 controller.
    It just needs some latches and bus bus buffer. I've adapted one to my NC4000 ( non-x86 ).
    If you have a WD-1000 you can use a simple bus buffer.
    You can look at the Olivetti M20 schematics on line for howsimple it is.
    I made such a buffer for my M20 and used the controller from
    a TRS80 5 Meg drive box ( essentially a WD-1000 ).
    Again, a simple wire wrap project.
    The XT board is the best to use since it has a sector buffer and
    doesn't have any need for interrupts or special timing requirments.
    Dwight
    Do you mean an ISA card as XT 506 controller? Or do you mean sasi (or something like that?)

    The sasi interface from the Xebec S1410 controller looks quite simple.
    sasi.jpg
    But you also need a program to format the disk, handle bad sectors, make it bootable...
    For making it bootable you need a power-on-jump or even an eprom...

    It is no problem for me to design a S100 board if also other people can use that board.
    The Xebec S1410 is still available. But a simple piece of hardware isn't enough...

    Regards, Roland
    Wanted: case for Altair 8800 in good or bad shape or even a replica.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roland Huisman View Post
    Yes I've seen that one too... But the FDD part seems to be hard sectored.
    And I've no idea how to make those floppy disks... I could not find software for it.
    Otherwise I would buy that card I think...

    Regards, Roland
    Yes, it does expect hard-sectored FDD, however take a look at: http://deramp.com/vsg.htm

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roland Huisman View Post
    I wonder how this controller would behave in an other S100 computer.
    I think that Kipp Yeakel ( a member here ) may have experimented with that configuration. Maybe he'll speak up about his experience?

    smp

  10. #10

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    Any experience here with the Byte HCA in March, April and May 1983?
    This seems to be exactly what I've been searching for (Thanks Freek)
    www.classiccmp.org/cini/pdf/byte/Building a Hard Disk Interface for the S100 byte0383.pdf

    Did anyone ever built it?
    Wanted: case for Altair 8800 in good or bad shape or even a replica.

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