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.
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Unlocking Prodos 800K floppies on Mac OS9.1

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    Unlocking Prodos 800K floppies on Mac OS9.1

    Hello All,

    I have archived some Basic programs from 800K Prodos discs to my Mac Performa running OS 9.1.
    The copying went OK. But, I cannot write to, erase, initialize nor reformat the 800K disc while in the
    Mac performa. The message is that the disk is Locked. There is no visible check box when "Getting Info".
    The notch in the corner is closed. No asterisk appears before any file when 'CAT" is typed while the disc
    is in the IIGS.
    How can I "Unlock" the 800K Prodos disc to write data to it using the Mac? Can anyone help solve this

    Thank you.
    The HyperGuy

    I'm not sure I understand completely how you got this disk in the first place. Did the Performa, running OS 9.1, write this disk originally? [Working theory: Mac OS 9.1 can't write to ProDOS filesytems; untested by me]


      I don't think Apple removed the ability to write to ProDOS disks in OS9. I know that turning on personal file sharing interferes with the ability to mount the disks, but it sounds like they are mounting ok. PowerPC Macs tend to be a crapshot at using 800k disks. The Mitsubishi drives they came with were lousy compared to the Sonys.


        That's true about the quality of the drives. I rely on DiskDup+ as the only thing that can reliably work the drive in a classic Mac.


          I could of swornt hat the ProDos extension worked on OS 9.
          [Need something to waste time on? Click here to visit my YouTube channel CelGenStudios]
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          = Excellent space heater


            I have read and wrote file-by-file and diskcopy imaged ProDOS 800k, MS-DOS 720k/1.44m, and Mac 800k/1.44m all on my Beige G3 all with no problems, however I am running 9.0.4. So I can tell you some versions of OS9 are compatible, but maybe support was removed in 9.1, I can't speak to that.

            EDIT: I did forget to mention ProDOS/MS-DOS translator will NOT run/work if you have "File Sharing" enabled, so maybe you are hitting that limitation, but I kind of doubt it, because a big dialog will pop up telling you such if you insert a disk when its enabled.
            Last edited by RWallmow; April 11, 2013, 08:03 AM.
            My Vintage computer/blog site
            Searching for a keyboard for a WYSEpc WY-1100.


              The 800K discs were formatted and written to using the IIGS (ROM 3). This was my teaching machine for Physics
              and Physical Science classes. Interfacing temperature, timer, sound frequency, etc. written in BASIC.
              Yes, the Power PC Mac reads the disk and allows copying the files, but cannot write to this disc. A lock icon appears
              when the disk is opened to display its files. At a loss as to how to go about unlocking it.


                Is the disk WP tab slid to the locked position? Or is it possible the WP detect switch is broken in your drive? Have you been able to write any other disks on that Mac?
                My Vintage computer/blog site
                Searching for a keyboard for a WYSEpc WY-1100.


                  It's very unlikely but possible that the disk's SOFTWARE write-protect flag has somehow gotten set — assuming, of course, that the ProDOS disk format included such a thing. I know HFS has always had one, and utilities to set and clear it existed back in the day. (The only software name I can recall off the top of my head was SoftLock, which worked great as far as I could tell — but I never tried it with anything but straight HFS.) So, how about it, IIGS experts — did ProDOS disks have a software write-protect bit stashed anywhere?
                  the world’s only gsteemso
                  agitator-in-chief for the Seattle Retro-Computing Society


                    Very likely that this switch malfunction is the cause. I'm looking into the software write-protect flag mentioned by "gsteemso".
                    In the meantime I did slove the file transfer problem by connecting an Apple ADB printer cable from the OS 9.1 Mac to my Mac SE (Probably could have done this with the IIGS), and set up file sharing on both. Transfer went very efficiently. I can now place the files onto a 800 K disk on the SE and move the files to the IIGS.
                    Thanks for all of the tips on this forum.