Announcement

Collapse

Forum Rules and Etiquette

Our mission ...

This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

This forum has been around in this format for over 15 years. These rules and guidelines help us maintain a healthy and active community, and we moderate the forum to keep things on track. Please familiarize yourself with these rules and guidelines.


Rule 1: Remain civil and respectful

There are several hundred people who actively participate here. People come from all different backgrounds and will have different ways of seeing things. You will not agree with everything you read here. Back-and-forth discussions are fine but do not cross the line into rude or disrespectful behavior.

Conduct yourself as you would at any other place where people come together in person to discuss their hobby. If you wouldn't say something to somebody in person, then you probably should not be writing it here.

This should be obvious but, just in case: profanity, threats, slurs against any group (sexual, racial, gender, etc.) will not be tolerated.


Rule 2: Stay close to the original topic being discussed
  • If you are starting a new thread choose a reasonable sub-forum to start your thread. (If you choose incorrectly don't worry, we can fix that.)
  • If you are responding to a thread, stay on topic - the original poster was trying to achieve something. You can always start a new thread instead of potentially "hijacking" an existing thread.



Rule 3: Contribute something meaningful

To put things in engineering terms, we value a high signal to noise ratio. Coming here should not be a waste of time.
  • This is not a chat room. If you are taking less than 30 seconds to make a post then you are probably doing something wrong. A post should be on topic, clear, and contribute something meaningful to the discussion. If people read your posts and feel that their time as been wasted, they will stop reading your posts. Worse yet, they will stop visiting and we'll lose their experience and contributions.
  • Do not bump threads.
  • Do not "necro-post" unless you are following up to a specific person on a specific thread. And even then, that person may have moved on. Just start a new thread for your related topic.
  • Use the Private Message system for posts that are targeted at a specific person.


Rule 4: "PM Sent!" messages (or, how to use the Private Message system)

This forum has a private message feature that we want people to use for messages that are not of general interest to other members.

In short, if you are going to reply to a thread and that reply is targeted to a specific individual and not of interest to anybody else (either now or in the future) then send a private message instead.

Here are some obvious examples of when you should not reply to a thread and use the PM system instead:
  • "PM Sent!": Do not tell the rest of us that you sent a PM ... the forum software will tell the other person that they have a PM waiting.
  • "How much is shipping to ....": This is a very specific and directed question that is not of interest to anybody else.


Why do we have this policy? Sending a "PM Sent!" type message basically wastes everybody else's time by making them having to scroll past a post in a thread that looks to be updated, when the update is not meaningful. And the person you are sending the PM to will be notified by the forum software that they have a message waiting for them. Look up at the top near the right edge where it says 'Notifications' ... if you have a PM waiting, it will tell you there.

Rule 5: Copyright and other legal issues

We are here to discuss vintage computing, so discussing software, books, and other intellectual property that is on-topic is fine. We don't want people using these forums to discuss or enable copyright violations or other things that are against the law; whether you agree with the law or not is irrelevant. Do not use our resources for something that is legally or morally questionable.

Our discussions here generally fall under "fair use." Telling people how to pirate a software title is an example of something that is not allowable here.


Reporting problematic posts

If you see spam, a wildly off-topic post, or something abusive or illegal please report the thread by clicking on the "Report Post" icon. (It looks like an exclamation point in a triangle and it is available under every post.) This send a notification to all of the moderators, so somebody will see it and deal with it.

If you are unsure you may consider sending a private message to a moderator instead.


New user moderation

New users are directly moderated so that we can weed spammers out early. This means that for your first 10 posts you will have some delay before they are seen. We understand this can be disruptive to the flow of conversation and we try to keep up with our new user moderation duties to avoid undue inconvenience. Please do not make duplicate posts, extra posts to bump your post count, or ask the moderators to expedite this process; 10 moderated posts will go by quickly.

New users also have a smaller personal message inbox limit and are rate limited when sending PMs to other users.


Other suggestions
  • Use Google, books, or other definitive sources. There is a lot of information out there.
  • Don't make people guess at what you are trying to say; we are not mind readers. Be clear and concise.
  • Spelling and grammar are not rated, but they do make a post easier to read.
See more
See less

And the Lord said unto VCF, "He's your problem now, may I have mercy on your souls"

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    And the Lord said unto VCF, "He's your problem now, may I have mercy on your souls"

    Greetings Earthlings!

    Long time lurker turned registered user Mikey reporting for duty! I keep bumping into links via google and thought it was time I started adding some signal to the noise where I could. My history is largely in stage and sound but my day job has always been IT, recently rediscovering a bunch of beige boxes stashed under my parents house from when I moved out 19 years ago swept me with a wave of nostalgia and, remembering how much cool old junk (70's era Wang terminals, "give it to that nerd kid" DEC and PDP hand-me-downs etc) I wrecked in the name of learnings, a desire to defend all the olden kit I can lay my hands on. Some sort of karmic repentance I guess. Watching a bunch of primary school kids marvel at these behemoths doing their thing at a history of computing day I recently schlepped a bunch of kit to kind of cemented my desire to preserve some of this gear as well.. For future generations of course.. Not at all for my own gratification.. No siree!

    No really, one of them actually jumped in fear at the sound of a TRS Model II floppy drive reading. Poor little darling thought it was going to bite his hand off. Bless!

    My battle fleet currently consists of;
    - My first microcomputer, a TI/994a with display and disk drives
    - My first XT, a Sperry 3070
    - Various 386 and 486 kit that I owned and abused through my youth/early teens
    - A complete IBM 5101 setup
    - A complete Olivetti M24, recently saved from a junkyard (and the reason I signed on, Trixter and Valerio, heads up )
    - An Osbourne Executive
    - A bunch of Trash 80 gear including an in box Model I and Model III
    - A dual processor 486, 4RU server which, till late 2017, was in production with a previous employer (honestly, I was fine taking it instead of a payout, I promise!)
    - A Commodore 4096 that someone kindly crammed an 8032 mainboard into (under restoration)
    - Some REAL early (1971 datestamped) NCR displays (10" and 18") who's origins I can't for the life of me identify, also under restoration

    I'm also big into analogue synths and audio gear and do a bit of of repair/restoration work for cats here and there, I own some old Roland and Korg kit I'll occasionally patch together and record some ambient noise with. My analogue chops are a lot better than my digital in terms of diagnostics and troubleshooting, I have a lot to learn but I haven't managed to let the smoke out of anything I'm working on currently, so either it's already been released, or I'm doing something right

    Look forward to shooting some chip with y'all
    [Sorry, this signature is not available in your country/region]

    #2
    Thumbs up for the Sperry -- very difficult to find. And hello to another M24 owner
    Offering a bounty for:
    - A working Sanyo MBC-775 or Logabax 1600
    - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)

    Comment


      #3
      What is that Sperry? Is it a portable? Not the HT XT, I think that was what it was called.

      Comment


        #4
        Welcome!
        I use my C128 because I am an ornery, stubborn, retro grouch. -- Bob Masse
        Various projects and oddities: http://oldvcr.blogspot.com/
        Machine room: http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

        Comment


          #5
          A dual processor 486, 4RU server which, till late 2017, was in production with a previous employer (honestly, I was fine taking it instead of a payout, I promise!)


          ooo I'd like to see that! Next time you have it out a few pics would be much appreciated.

          Also welcome!
          It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by luckybob View Post
            ooo I'd like to see that! Next time you have it out a few pics would be much appreciated.

            Also welcome![/COLOR]
            I second this. I too would like to see it. and that was is being used for?

            And welcome.
            I have dyslexia, I have alot of trouble putting my thoughts into words and spelling/grammar is something I struggle with.
            You may need to read my posts twice to understand what I said.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Trixter View Post
              Thumbs up for the Sperry -- very difficult to find. And hello to another M24 owner
              *summoned* Thanks for popping by man, great to see you No kidding on the Sperry, They are indeed hard to find, and even harder to find information on. Most of the google hits come back to this very forum where members are asking for just that, some information. And here is my Olivetti, in all it's failing-to-POST-because-incontinent-battery glory. It sat in a disused bus in a junkyard for god knows how long, cleaned up rather well. It has clock, voltage appears to be everywhere it should, ROM's are being told to do their thing but nothing but a single flash on the keyboard LED's followed by rapid (~5 per second) flashing that doesn't stop till it's turned off. The CPU gets crazy hot as well. I have ordered some diagnostic gear, once it arrives you'll likely see a thread about it. I do have a spare CPU but am reluctant to drop it in until everything else checks out.

              M24.jpg

              Originally posted by 2icebitn View Post
              What is that Sperry? Is it a portable? Not the HT XT, I think that was what it was called.
              I *think* it's an 3070-02 XT. I think this because again, it seems to be rare as hell with next to no documentation on it. Needs moar retrobrite and a few new caps in its PSU, 12V rail packed it in not long after the computer day. Still runs on a fistful of bench power supplies.

              20180321_190117.jpg

              Originally posted by luckybob View Post
              ooo I'd like to see that! Next time you have it out a few pics would be much appreciated. Also welcome!
              Originally posted by Mr. Horse View Post
              I second this. I too would like to see it. and that was is being used for? And welcome.
              Thank you gents. Behold! A massively proprietary Lanier.. something something digital dictation system. I was working in the mothership of one of Australia's largest pathology providers, this was a server which allowed regional labs to dial in and submit dictated pathological analysis. The modem stack was connected to the last three ports on the right out via 6 POTS dial ins via "Y" cables. Looks like COM, is definitely not COM. Just like any 40 year old company that maintains a cutting edge, highly agile fleet this was left alone for years, serving the labs till the battery on the second CPU card did what all PERFECTLY REASONABLE AND FRIENDLY old batteries do, spewed its guts out. It ran Netware and an app to manage the files, but we obviously had to wipe all that before it left the premises. I never directly administered it so I don't know how the dual card setup worked from a driver and OS perspective, but the second card didn't come back after a vinegar bath and some rewiring, so, like all of us, I am on the hunt for an identical card. Being the proprietary system it is I'm sure I have Buckley's chance, but a boy can dream.

              20181212_191539.jpg 20181212_191547.jpg 20181212_191904.jpg

              - Dual 486DX @50MHz, 16MB total RAM across two CPU cards.
              - 500MB OS disk.
              - AHA-1520 SCSI controller with a 2.1GB data drive
              - Proprietary dual AUI card (still connected to a long dead DEC AUI switch)
              - 3Com Etherlink III 3C509 (presumably installed when the DEC died)
              - 3x proprietary DSP interface cards with a bunch of memory around them to convert the incoming data stream back to an audio file (I'm told similar cards were on the remote end to convert the other way)

              To sum up;
              Attached Files
              Last edited by pski; December 14, 2018, 06:50 AM. Reason: offensive image removed by mods
              [Sorry, this signature is not available in your country/region]

              Comment


                #8
                Oh, and these are the NCR displays. I need to have a hunt and see if we have a "what kit is that" thread, but you never know, someone may stumble across them here. The lower chassis of both has a slotted card cage with nothing in them and factory blanked DB25 ports, presumably for dummy terminal duties, but these only have BNC fed coax running straight to the display board, again, a factory looking build as opposed to a post-manufacture mod from the looks. Lots of dried caps and cracked condensers (!), a restore project for a later date.

                20180219_233743.jpg
                [Sorry, this signature is not available in your country/region]

                Comment


                  #9
                  Commodore really sold a 40 column computer with 96K of RAM? Weird. I've only ever seen 8096 models.

                  I mean I wouldn't put it past "whatever we have on hand" Commodore.

                  Oh and welcome!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    umm, that's just a normal 486 sbc, not a dual-cpu.

                    Also, to keep a balance in the world, I'm 100% in support of giving those batteries the bird. **** those things.
                    It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      OK that is the Sperry HT PC, aka Leading Edge model M. Mitsubishi floppy drive. Rare? Likely the Sperry occurrence more then the LE. But both are. O boy here we go. Now I got the itch to reassemble my M. Its a bit on the nasty side at the moment. And was failing to boot. HD never worked. I guess someone will be interested. Beats tossing it.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Sperry PC

                        I've still got my old Sperry PC 3070-02 that I paid big bucks for in the employee purchase program in 1986, and the invoices to prove it.

                        10 MB HD, jumpeer-cabled-two-board "Hi-Res" video adapter with the long-persistence phosphor CRT to deal with the interlaced 640x400x256 graphics mode, MDA and monochrome monitor, and wires soldered to ground and NMI on the CPU to provide a breakout switch for the debugger. Developing fractals and early GIF graphics on the Hi-Res, debugger running on the MDA, and software control of the power LED at the switch (!) and the border color on the hi-res to give debugging output from inside interrupt handlers. I was so happy to find FractInt and get that running on it. That was my hacking platform for ~8 years before my next box, a 486 running Linux. I don't think I've ever run across another outside of my fellow Sperry Univac guys!

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by luckybob View Post
                          umm, that's just a normal 486 sbc, not a dual-cpu.
                          Yeah, that card has a single CPU, but the beastie came with two identical CPU cards, if you look closely there's an open slot behind the installed card for the second. I'll go box digging and see if I can find the second one. I was actually going to make that battery picture my avatar but thought I might be pushing my luck a little.


                          Originally posted by 2icebitn View Post
                          OK that is the Sperry HT PC, aka Leading Edge model M. Mitsubishi floppy drive. Rare? Likely the Sperry occurrence more then the LE. But both are. O boy here we go. Now I got the itch to reassemble my M. Its a bit on the nasty side at the moment. And was failing to boot. HD never worked. I guess someone will be interested. Beats tossing it.
                          Best as I can tell Sperry were more in the military/flight/ballistic computing game than the desktop domain, I presume it's rare because there is so little information on it; That could of course also mean it was complete rubbish. Still, I cut my DOS and BASIC teeth on it and it survived 19 years sitting under a house, it deserves a place.
                          Originally posted by 2icebitn View Post
                          Now I got the itch to reassemble my M.
                          Do it.
                          Originally posted by 2icebitn View Post
                          I guess someone will be interested.
                          *raises hand*


                          Originally posted by rpiguy2 View Post
                          Commodore really sold a 40 column computer with 96K of RAM?
                          Nope, I'm just a potato who got the model number wrong because recent acquisition. It's a 4016, pulled out of a HAM shack at a deceased estate earlier this year. Old mate added the 8032 board and a row of keys to load up different ROMs and run RTTY functions (I guess). It also appears to have had some third party boards in it at some stage which have been removed, cut wires, non-factory screw posts etc. It's got power but not much else. And thank you sir.

                          20180526_233144.jpg
                          [Sorry, this signature is not available in your country/region]

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by ATSystems View Post
                            Yeah, that card has a single CPU, but the beastie came with two identical CPU cards, if you look closely there's an open slot behind the installed card for the second. I'll go box digging and see if I can find the second one. I was actually going to make that battery picture my avatar but thought I might be pushing my luck a little.

                            It could have been dual segmented or setup for redundancy. Finding any SBC prior to a socket 5 will be hard. let alone a matching card. Hopefully you find one.
                            I have dyslexia, I have alot of trouble putting my thoughts into words and spelling/grammar is something I struggle with.
                            You may need to read my posts twice to understand what I said.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Garrett View Post
                              I've still got my old Sperry PC 3070-02 that I paid big bucks for in the employee purchase program in 1986, and the invoices to prove it.

                              10 MB HD, jumpeer-cabled-two-board "Hi-Res" video adapter with the long-persistence phosphor CRT to deal with the interlaced 640x400x256 graphics mode, MDA and monochrome monitor, and wires soldered to ground and NMI on the CPU to provide a breakout switch for the debugger. Developing fractals and early GIF graphics on the Hi-Res, debugger running on the MDA, and software control of the power LED at the switch (!) and the border color on the hi-res to give debugging output from inside interrupt handlers. I was so happy to find FractInt and get that running on it. That was my hacking platform for ~8 years before my next box, a 486 running Linux. I don't think I've ever run across another outside of my fellow Sperry Univac guys!
                              If you ever need to find a home for it, let me know. That is the final thing I'd like to add to my collection and show off at VCF festivals. That long-persistence color phosphor monitor was amazing.
                              Offering a bounty for:
                              - A working Sanyo MBC-775 or Logabax 1600
                              - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X