Forum Rules and Etiquette

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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.

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To put things in engineering terms, we value a high signal to noise ratio. Coming here should not be a waste of time.
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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:
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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.

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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
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What are the top 10 rarest vintage computer bits you own?

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    Not too rare but I’ve got

    A Gravis ultrasound max 2.1
    A NEC CDR-80 with it’s matching 8 bit ISA card
    A Nakamichi MJ 4.8s? Cd changer. 4 disc version seems significantly more rare than 5 disc.
    And my baby, an IBM PS/2 Model 95/A
    Looking For: PS/2 Monitor model 8516
    IBM PS/2 Model 80 floppy cable
    IBM PS/2 Model 90 and 95 bezels
    IBM PS/2 “Cubrun” P90 Processor Complex
    Ati Mach MCA edition
    Will pay $500-1000 for a Sound Blaster MCV, ChipChat or SoundPiper


      Currently my rarest pieces are:
      Zaisan ES3 computer
      IBM 5161 expansion unit
      Worm drive in my PS/2 model 60
      Macintosh Portable pre-production demo unit
      Apple Lisa 2/10
      GE Fanuc Workmaster 1
      ALR 6x6/Unisys Aquanta HS/6
      IBM Eduquest Forty
      Mint boxed revision A IBM 5150 with everything
      NOS Microsoft Softcard


        Northstar Dimension
        Canon AS-100 color
        Canon AS-100 mono
        IBM PGC card and inoperative 5175 monitor
        Vermont Microsystems PGC clone, 80188 based
        Ampro LittleBoard/PC, V40 based
        AMT AMTjr/ATjr, Sony V20 (clone) based
        Intel 300/? Multibus chassis, no cards
        Number9 Revolution video card, kind of a dog
        Tandy 3000HD, come on you know they're uncommon
        NEC APC III, most of the available add-ons
        Texas Instruments Portable Professional, color

        That's 12. I think that comprises most of what would likely considered rare. I also have a Lisa. And a Canon VP-3000. That's 14.


          I don’t think I’ve got anything that’s super rare. And I’m not really sure I want anything that so rare I’d be upset if it broke and I couldn’t get parts for it.

          I’ve got a couple of IBM 5161, but no cables or extender cards, just the receivers.
          I’ve also got the lid for a Compaq Deskpro 386, but it’s not the correct computer underneath


            How could I forget. I have 2 Mindsets, one beaten to snot. Neither work lol.

            I also have a Tecmar 5161 clone, in horrible shape. Jafir reminded me.


              Originally posted by Weiveismart View Post
              How about a Durango F85?
              is that a "Poppy"? If so you'd better erase that post before Chuck G.finds out.


                Originally posted by tipc View Post
                How could I forget. I have 2 Mindsets, one beaten to snot. Neither work lol.

                I also have a Tecmar 5161 clone, in horrible shape. Jafir reminded me.
                Do they power up to a black or solid colour screen? That's what both of mine do.


                  Haven't powered them in years. Couldn't tell you. I just cringe to think I nearly gave ~1/2 dozen away years ago.

                  And I won't be powering them again using the stock power supplies. Not until I can load test and verify their integrity.


                    My rarest items:
                    Heathkit EC-1
                    IBM 3270 AT
                    IBM 5150 REVA with Version 2 bios
                    IBM 5150 REVA with Version 1 bios
                    Jacquard Loom punch cards


                      Hi, I have original 1975 Altair 8800 kit documentation including build manual, operations manual, original parts lists, original cassettes for 4K and 8K BASIC as well as StarTrek and a lot of other stuff from when I built my Altair 8800 kit.

                      Find pictures on my website;

                      I also have an original 1975 Motorola MEK6800D1 Kit I built and only ever tested one time back in 1975;

                      Now I'd like to trade some of this for a good working original 1975 Altair 8800 computer ...



                        Cray J932SE Supercomputer
                        Sun Voyager (I need the carrying bag!)
                        Seattle Computer Products 8086 S100 boards (2 of the 3 or 4 needed)
                        Gravis Ultrasound 1.0 / Sound Blaster 1.0
                        Yamaha C1 laptop that works
                        Atari TT030
                        Amiga 4000T
                        BeBox 66mhz incomplete
                        IMSAI 8080
                        Atari STacy


                          I place here my rarest items, in no particular order. Sorry if some of them are not that rare.

                          1. IBM PS/2 Model 30 8086, bought in original state.

                          Well, sure it's not that rare but I'm feel quite lucky I found, not too far from my home, a mint condition one, perfectly working, at a not-that-crazy-price. I also feel that the 8086 model is more difficult to find than the 286 one, not sure this is right.

                          2. Premium PC II.

                          This is a Turbo XT clone with a Siemens 8088 dual speed inside (4.77-10 mhz) and a dual graphic card (Herc + CGA? The computer came with an MDA type monitor, so now it works on Herc mode). It has a Zeta Ltd. BIOS from 1989 (first time I heard of) which looks to be 100% compatible with the IBM BIOS, as it ran every program I tried. I wasn't able to find any information of this system on the web so while the configuration is quite common and standard, with almost the same specifications as DTK Turbo XT and other clones, this concrete model and mark I think is quite rare.

                          3. Octek-Oak VGA OTI 037c from 1989.

                          Well, the OTI 037c is quite common, in fact I had a 1990 one bought in 1991, and it is not too difficult to find one on the web. But this is a quite early model, built by Octek.

                          4. Programmer's guide to PC & PS/2 Video Systems, by Richard Wilton.

                          This time, a book. The 1987 edition. It still can be found on Ebay and others but there aren't that many physical copies available... I think this is considered as the "bible" of 1980's IBM and compatibles video systems. Very revealing and useful. While Abrash's books are more detailed regarding VGA, this book is the one for treating earlier video cards.

                          5. Programmation des cartes graphiques CGA, EGA, VGA, François Gervais.

                          This book has being with me more than 30 years. I think it's quite rare, not many copies were produced at the time, and there are not many available on the web. It's not bad but it's quite simple comparing it with the superbly detailed and useful Wilton's one. I'd wish I had Wilton's book instead of this at that time...