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The Eagle 1600 computer

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    The Eagle 1600 computer

    The Eagle 1600 computer

    The other day a beat-up rustbucket Eagle 1600 model 1630 came up on eBay, finally for a reasonable price. So I grabbed it, and decided to test its compatibility if I could get it running.

    The Eagle 1600 is an interesting computer because it was the second IBM PC clone after the Columbia Data Product 1600 (Marketing must have really liked the number 1600).

    However, magazine reviews of the time were heavily inconsistent describing its compatibility or lack thereof. Some referred to it as able to run any IBM PC software, while others referred to it as an MS-DOS hardware-incompatible. Yet others seem to confuse it with the slightly later "Eagle PC". And there is very little on the Internet about it today.

    Surprisingly after a *LOT* of scrubbing and cleaning, it actually began to look halfway decent.

    Mostly Togeather.jpg

    The video card was completely dead (It would not start up with the card in place), and there was no keyboard. But surprisingly I was able to drop in a generic clone monographics card, attach an XT compatible keyboard, and after hunting down several bad RAM chips, it WORKED!

    Eagle System Diagnostic.jpg

    General System Specification:

    Intel 8086-2 CPU. (8MHZ)
    This unit has 512MB RAM, the first 128K bank is soldered on. Each bank has 16 DIP chips.
    8 ISA compatible slots
    96TPI 5.25" Quad-Density floppy drive.
    Can read/write 360K disk.
    10MB Internal MFM/SASI hard drive (dead)
    No keyboard, but works with XT compatible keyboard (Arrow keys have issues)
    Can boot IBM PC DOS and vanilla MS-DOS.

    I never could find a exact release date for the 1600, but it would have been sometime in 1982. The Eagle 1600 was shortly followed up by the 8088-based, and reportedly more compatible, Eagle PC. Presumably the 1600 would have been targeted to higher-end workstation users, and the Eagle PC more towards common office and home users.

    There is an Eagle Computer product list here: http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcfo...ter-model-list

    ***Motherboard***
    Motherboard Top.jpgMotherboard Bottom.jpg
    Larger Front: http://lucasm.cf/?zgm2n
    Larger Back: http://lucasm.cf/?mddmz
    There are no switches or jumpers on this board. All configuration is auto-detected.

    It uses a 16-bit 8086. Norton (v4.5) SI reports a speed of 1.9. Speedcom thinks it runs like a 3.81mhz PC AT or a 10MHZ 8088.

    Although it uses a 16-bit CPU, the motherboard has eight 8-bit ISA compatible slots. With the way most articles talked about this machine, I did not expect it would accept IBM expansion cards. But it does, with some limitations and possible bugs.

    Motherboard resources such as PC-speaker and DMA controller seem software compatible with the IBM PC.

    ***BIOS***
    Here is a dump of the ROMS if anyone wants it:
    http://s000.tinyupload.com/index.php...90239801521353

    The motherboard chip date codes suggest a manufacture date of early 1983. However, this BIOS has a date of 7/13/84, suggesting the BIOS was upgraded.

    The BIOS identifies itself as EPROM VER 2.2

    Since Eagle, according to Infoworld, was forced to stop shipping IBM code-infringing PCs on 3/7/1984, presumably this version would be free of any possible infringing code.

    It appears this BIOS does not support ROM extensions. This means that normal hard disk controllers, VGA cards, and the XT-IDE BIOS driven cards do not function.

    This also means some of the compatibility results here might differ from an original release.

    It would be interesting to compare this version to an earlier version. The magazine articles speculated that this would reduce compatibility, but the additional work could have actually increased it.

    Pressing "T" at boot launches a diagnostic program that tests the system and RAM.

    Pressing "F" at boot forces a boot from the floppy. On a model 1630, it defaults to booting from the hard drive.

    ***RAM***
    The ram chips on the motherboard are 200NS 64Kx1. They are added in banks of 16 chips. The motherboard accepts three additional banks for a maximum of 512K.

    Theoretically, it might be possible to use an ISA memory expansion card, but the 8-bit data bus would make that slower.

    The BIOS appears to support addition of RAM in 64K increments up to 640K.

    ***Keyboard***
    The Eagle 1600 series shipped with a proprietary 24 function-key keyboard. However, these should operate on an IBM PC. They were also sold as an option with the Eagle PC.

    Mine didn't come with a keyboard, so I can't be sure.

    The keyboard attaches to a DIN plug on the side of the machine. From my testing, generic XT compatible keyboards work with the 1600, although some applications do not properly recognize keypresses from the arrow keys.

    ***Power Supply***
    It has a very small proprietary form power supply (50/42 watts) that seems inadequate for running a hard drive. But somehow it manages.

    -----Expansion Cards------

    *** Paralel Port***
    Photo: http://lucasm.cf/?yzc0n
    This looks like it might be a parallel port card with a centronix plug?

    I'm not really sure. Haven't had a chance to poke around with this one yet.

    ***Serial Card***
    Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?mgrjo
    This looks like a serial card. It looks to be non-IBM compatible.

    The little bit I have found about this suggests this is a dual serial card with a single UART.

    ***Video Card***
    Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?zwizz
    This card appears to be dead. When it is plugged in, the system will not start (powers up but BIOS will not POST). That is too bad, because I would love to kick it around.

    According to the one line of text I could find on the Internet about this, the Eagle 1600 uses a "720x352 graphics mode". (https://books.google.com/books?id=2C...page&q&f=false )

    The card has 32K of RAM, and the DB-9 port seems to be wired for an IBM mono monitor. But it also has an RCA jack, perhaps for composite?

    So perhaps this is something like a Hercules card? Although the Hercules was not released until a couple of years later. Even then, it was supposedly just a clone of the IBM MDA card with more RAM.

    Eagle did also manufacture and sell their own optional CGA card for the 1600 and Eagle PC.

    I tested both a generic Monographics card an a CGA card in the 1600. They both "worked" but with some glitches.

    Most programs and diagnostics ran and looked OK, but some graphics appeared with vertical bars and text modes did not always draw color or highlights. If I get a chance perhaps I will dig in to that a bit more. It sort of smells like block copy/clear operations miss every other byte. This could be a compatibility issue with the 16-bit to 8-bit bus, but I wouldn't rule out possible motherboard damage.

    ***SASI Interface card***
    Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?mjkwn
    This card connects to a XEBEC SASI controller. There is no BIOS, so the code to use this must be in the motherboard ROM. Presumably this means it would not work on an IBM PC or other clone, even though this is an ISA card.

    The BIOS appears to provide software compatible INT 13 disk services.

    ***Floppy disk controller***
    Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?owjlo
    Again, although this is an ISA style card, it is not IBM PC compatible. It will not work in place of an IBM PC floppy controller or vice versa.

    The ImageDisk TestFDC tool fails. This tool talks directly to the hardware and requires full compatibility. There is no disk activity and it returns a "no FDC interrupt" error.

    However the system is software compatible at the BIOS level. Tools such as the NFORMAT disk formatter work.

    The BIOS hides the drive's double-stepping from IBM software. There is no way for vanilla DOS to use the native 96TPI/~720K capability.

    ***Floppy Drive***
    Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?mjyzo
    The floppy drive is a Mitsubishi M4853 96TPI 5.25" 300RPM drive. (Apparently these were also used in the Tandy 2000)

    The disk controller uses a flat non-twisted cable, and the drive is set to DS0.

    The Eagle 1600 model 1620 would have dual floppy drives. The 1630 has only a single floppy.

    This drive runs the motor constantly, even when the drive is open. Given the small power supply, you would think it would not. Instead it has a lever that raises the head when it is not reading/writing. Off hand I don't know if it would encounter any compatibility issues if this behavior were changed.

    This system is designed to use an 800K 5.25" Quad-Density floppy disk format

    The geometry is: 5 sectors of 1024 bytes, 80 tracks, double sided, MFM encoding, 250Khz at 300RPM.

    Its DOS/BIOS somehow knows to double step when using PC-DOS or MS-DOS 360K disks.

    360K disks formatted or written to in this drive may suffer from similar interoperability problems as 360K disks formatted in IBM AT 1.2MB drives when read in 360K drives.

    On the up side, 360K disks formatted in 1.2mb drives will always work fine in this drive.

    ***Hard Drive***
    Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?zjvmn
    The Eagle 1600 model 1630 includes a pre-installed internal hard disk drive. Reportedly this was the first IBM-compatible to do this (Columbia Data Products must have shipped hard disk models later, and this pre-dated the IBM XT)

    This hard disk is a Computer Memories Inc, Model CM 5412 10mb MFM drive.

    ***SASI Controller/Bridge***
    Picture:http://lucasm.cf/?y2uxy
    The drive is connected to a XEBEC SASI Controller that is mounted underneath the floppy drive. The controller is marked Assy 104525 Rev-06 / 73-106. This controller is then connected to the Interface card above.

    Eagle was already using this SASI controller in their Z80 based CP/M machines.

    This seems to be similar to the XEBEC 104524C/S1410, for which there are manuals floating around.

    After some chugging, my hard drive eventually spun up. It didn't seem to do anything, but after some futzing I discoverer that the head stepper motor had seized up. Removing the hard drives circuit board I was able to access the external portion of the hard drive arm. With some effort, it came free.

    And then... it booted! Well, once. And then lots and lots and lots of read errors.

    ***DOS***
    This Eagle 1600 had an Eagle OEM version of MS-DOS 2.1 on it. I was able to create a boot disk just before the hard drive crapped out.

    Here it is if it is of any use to anyone (Eagle 800k format):
    http://s000.tinyupload.com/index.php...66632550841821

    There is a more complete Eagle OEM version of MS-DOS 2.0 on bitsavers:
    http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/b...omputer/5inch/
    However this appears to be packaged for the Eagle PC or Eagle Spirit. Most notably, the HDINIT tool does not recognize the Eagle 1600 SASI card (And I didn't find a hard disk tool on the hard drive). It does support the Eagle 800K 96TPI format, however.

    On a 360K disk, the Eagle OEM DOS will boot on an IBM PC. And IBM PC-DOS or Vanilla MS-DOS will boot on an Eagle 1600. I was also able to boot several IBM "booter" programs, but ran in to graphical glitches.

    PC/MS-DOS can not use the 800K format, nor will the 800K format read or boot on a PC. Interestingly, however, I was able to format and read an Eagle 800K disk from a regular PC using the Eagle OEM DOS.

    Sadly, the Eagle Computer OEM MS-DOS 1.x is still not out there anywhere. It also would have used the Quad Density format, and was peculiar because it reportedly could recognize these hard drives, but as drive "A:" and without subdirectories.

    Eagle MS-DOS 2.0 and 2.1 recognize the hard disk as C: like any other DOS.

    -----
    So in conclusion, the Eagle 1600 is somewhat IBM-PC hardware compatible, and designed as such. But, it is an odd duck with enough incompatible hardware that would have made interoperation with other PC software or hardware very problematic.

    PS, would anyone happen to have the correct SASI low-level formatter tool for this system?
    Last edited by SomeGuy; October 25, 2015, 04:32 PM. Reason: Added XEBEC picture

    #2
    Wow lots of information, great !!! I found the manual for the 48tpi drive here:
    http://www.textfiles.com/bitsavers/p...nual_Nov83.pdf
    There are configuration jumpers to control when the motor turns on and when the head loads. When I've encountered the 'no FDC interrupt error' with Dunfield's Imagedisk
    on other manufacturer's drives it's been when the drive is selected but the head didn't load. When I jumpered head load with drive select, it started working. Maybe changing
    a few jumpers would make yours function better.

    Larry G

    Comment


      #3
      I dug into my archives--and between "DUET" and "EPSON" I found my Eagle floppies--lots of Eagle 8-bit ones, but a couple of Eagle 1600 ones. Back, what, about 30 years ago, I wrote an EAGLE 1600 driver for the PC AT class machines with HD 5.25" drives. You might find it on the old SIMTEL CD under the name of "EAGLE16" or something like that. I revised it once to include all of the DOS 3.3 IOCTLs. Shrug--I never did get a lot of interest.

      At any rate, here's what appears to be a DOS 2.1 OEM floppy. I don't know if it matches yours. I haven't yet peered into the DOS subdirectory:

      Code:
       Volume in drive E has no label
       Directory of E:\
      
      COMMAND  COM        15,973  04-04-84  9:50a COMMAND.COM
      DOS            <DIR>        01-01-80 12:02a DOS
      ANSI     SYS         1,581  04-26-83 12:07a ANSI.SYS
      ASSIGN   COM         1,265  04-26-83  5:01a ASSIGN.COM
      BACKUP   COM        24,272  06-06-84 11:08a BACKUP.COM
      BASIC    COM           594  06-28-84  1:34p BASIC.COM
      BASICA   COM           594  06-28-84 11:43a BASICA.COM
      BASICA   EXE        57,344  04-26-84  3:12p BASICA.EXE
      CHKDSK   COM         6,468  10-19-83  7:51p CHKDSK.COM
      CLOCK    SYS           362  03-02-84 10:09a CLOCK.SYS
      COMP     EXE         3,031  06-15-84 12:02p COMP.EXE
      DEBUG    COM        12,223  10-19-83  7:52p DEBUG.COM
      DISKCOMP COM        14,600  01-31-84 12:13a DISKCOMP.COM
      DISKCOPY COM         2,048  06-04-84 12:03p DISKCOPY.COM
      DISKUTIL EXE        21,120  01-04-84  8:53a DISKUTIL.EXE
      LPTSWAP  COM           128  01-01-80 12:26a LPTSWAP.COM
      EXE2BIN  EXE         1,649  02-01-83  9:19a EXE2BIN.EXE
      FDISK    EXE         6,784  01-30-84  3:02a FDISK.EXE
      FIND     EXE         6,331  10-19-83  7:51p FIND.EXE
      FORMAT   COM         7,201  11-20-84  1:11p FORMAT.COM
      GRAPHICS COM           695  02-16-84 10:07a GRAPHICS.COM
      HDINIT   COM         5,905  02-05-85  3:49p HDINIT.COM
      INITIAL  BAT            92  04-23-84  1:42a INITIAL.BAT
      INITIAL  ST2           117  04-23-84  1:43a INITIAL.ST2
      KEYBOARD COM         2,925  05-07-85  4:32p KEYBOARD.COM
      SDIR     COM         3,221  02-14-84  9:49a SDIR.COM
      MODE     COM         2,761  01-05-84  2:11a MODE.COM
      MORE     COM         4,364  10-19-83  7:51p MORE.COM
      PD       COM           353  03-26-84 12:21a PD.COM
      PRINT    COM         4,506  03-02-84 11:35a PRINT.COM
      PRINTSCN COM           521  04-26-84  9:58a PRINTSCN.COM
      RECOVER  COM         2,295  10-19-83  7:51p RECOVER.COM
      PCSWP    EXE        45,696  01-01-80 12:10a PCSWP.EXE
      SETUP    EXE        25,228  12-19-83  1:25a SETUP.EXE
      SORT     EXE         1,632  01-27-84 12:53p SORT.EXE
      SYS      COM         1,881  01-30-84  3:23p SYS.COM
      COLOR    COM         1,024  01-01-80 12:39a COLOR.COM
      UPGRD    EXE         6,560  06-21-85 11:53a UPGRD.EXE
      SYSINFO  SYS           512  01-01-80 12:05a SYSINFO.SYS
      CONFIG   SAS            32  09-23-87  9:18p CONFIG.SAS
      SASIDEV  SYS         5,392  06-20-85  2:19p SASIDEV.SYS
              40 file(s)        299,280 bytes
               1 dir(s)         140,288 bytes free
      Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

      Comment


        #4
        Very nice. Additional note: the "PCE" emulator can use the Eagle BIOS (therefore most probably a real XT can as well), so anyone can experience its quirks like strange screen refresh during DOS scrolling, or KQ1 freezing at the title...

        Comment


          #5
          I didn't happen to mention it above, but I was able to get a root directory listing from the hard drive. Unfortunately 98% of the files are unreadable. As I mentioned in another thread, it looks like the stepper motor is damaged.

          Chuck, it does look like your DOS disk matches up with what was on this system. With the mention of SASI, hopefully that disk formatter will work for the 1600.

          Code:
           Volume in drive C has no label
           Directory of  C:\
          
          COMMAND  COM    15973   4-04-84   9:50a
          SYSINFO  SYS      512   1-01-80  12:01a
          CHKDSK   COM     6468  10-19-83   7:51p
          PRACTICE          512  12-18-85  10:47a
          MASTER   EXE    19072   2-09-83  12:02a
          ATVCOHYL ANL     9088   1-21-86  12:22a
          WORDSTAR     <DIR>      9-10-85  12:01a
          XTALK    EXE    57984   9-16-83   4:47p
          XTHELP   DIR     4929   9-19-83  11:20a
          XTALK    HLP    33664   9-19-83  11:20a
          DR       COM    11464  12-15-82   1:06p
          SB       COM    37888   4-26-83  12:01a
          ANSI     SYS     1581   4-26-83  12:07a
          \        HEP    12928   1-24-83   1:33a
          HELP     HEP    11520   2-14-83  11:38a
          SS       EXE    63616   4-26-83  12:02a
          SS       OVL      896   8-01-82  12:00a
          SS       HLP    26752   4-26-83  12:02a
          DEBUG    COM    12223  10-19-83   7:52p
          NEWUSER  XTS     1717   9-19-83  11:18a
          FORMAT   COM     7201  11-20-84   1:11p
          FILCOM   COM     8320   3-16-82
          LINK     EXE    42368   1-06-83   4:36p
          MASM     EXE    67968   3-16-82
          LIB      EXE    32128   2-18-82
          CREF     EXE    13824   2-18-82
          SYS      COM     1881   1-30-84   3:23p
          EXE2BIN  EXE     1649   2-01-83   9:19a
          EDLIN    COM     8080  10-19-83   7:51p
          BRKEVEN  ANA     2048  12-14-82  10:43a
          BALANCE  SHT     1280  12-14-82  10:43a
          CUESORT  WPM     2816   9-01-82  12:01p
          BATCH    WPM      896   9-01-82  12:01p
          FORMS    WPM     2048   2-09-83  12:00a
          INSTALL  WPM     1536   9-01-82  12:02p
          LINENB   WPM     2816   9-01-82  12:02p
          MMERGE   WPM     2816  11-08-82  12:08a
          ALPHA    WPM     4736   9-01-82  12:02p
          BOILER   WPM     1792   9-01-82  12:02p
          2CPRNT   WPM     4096   9-01-82  12:02p
          MENU     WPM      896  11-01-82  12:01p
          EXIT     WPM      640  11-01-82  12:02p
          LETTER   DEM      640   9-01-82  12:03p
          CUSLIST  DEM      768   9-01-82  12:03p
          BOILER   LET      128   9-01-82  12:03p
          BOILER   A        640   9-01-82  12:03p
          KEYS     A        256   9-01-82  12:04p
          COL      A        384   9-01-82  12:04p
          LETTER   TEM      512  11-08-82  12:15a
          ORDER    TEM      768   9-01-82  12:04p
          INVOICE  TEM     1152  11-08-82  12:14a
          CALC     SMP      384   9-01-82  12:04p
          PCONTROL TAB     2560   9-01-82  12:04p
          SPACE    TAB      896  11-01-82  12:05a
          AUTOLF   TAB     2944   9-01-82  12:04p
          GWBASIC  EXE    56832   8-03-83   3:57p
          WMSBOOT  COM     2561   3-27-83  12:12a
          ASSIGN   COM     1265   4-26-83   5:01a
          TRANSFER EXE    23680   3-31-83  12:30a
          BACKUP   COM    24272   6-06-84  11:08a
          BASIC    COM      594   6-28-84   1:34p
          BASICA   COM      594   6-28-84  11:43a
          BASICA   EXE    57344   4-26-84   3:12p
          CLOCK    SYS      362   3-02-84  10:09a
          COMP     EXE     3031   6-15-84  12:02p
          DISKCOMP COM    14600   1-31-84  12:13a
          DISKCOPY COM     2048   6-04-84  12:03p
          FDISK    EXE     6784   1-30-84   3:02a
          FIND     EXE     6331  10-19-83   7:51p
          GRAPHICS COM      695   2-16-84  10:07a
          PR               7609   1-01-80   1:33a
          INITIAL  BAT       92   4-23-84   1:42a
          INITIAL  ST2      117   4-23-84   1:43a
          KEYBOARD COM     2925   5-07-85   4:32p
          MODE     COM     2761   1-05-84   2:11a
          MORE     COM     4364  10-19-83   7:51p
          PD       COM      353   3-26-84  12:21a
          PRINT    COM     4506   3-02-84  11:35a
          PRINTSCN COM      521   4-26-84   9:58a
          RECOVER  COM     2295  10-19-83   7:51p
          RESTORE  COM    21294   4-24-84   3:39a
          SETUP    EXE    25228  12-19-83   1:25a
          SORT     EXE     1632   1-27-84  12:53p
          TREE     COM     1574   7-22-84  10:30a
          UPGRD    EXE     6560   3-18-85   9:28a
          STD      XTK     1041   4-26-83   1:01a
          SETUP    XTK       11   9-19-83  11:20a
          NEWUSER  XTK       13   9-19-83  11:19a
          SETUP    XTS     1953   9-19-83  11:17a
          XA                  1   4-26-83  12:16a
          SCANNER  BAS        1   4-26-83  12:27a
          MCS1     BAS    13955   1-24-85  12:14a
          CREATEDB        32896   6-07-85  12:49a
          AMORTIZE     <DIR>     12-05-85  12:05a
          COMMBAS  BAS      640   4-26-83  12:18a
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                217 File(s)   2625536 bytes free
          Originally posted by retrogear View Post
          When I've encountered the 'no FDC interrupt error' with Dunfield's Imagedisk on other manufacturer's drives it's been when the drive is selected but the head didn't load.
          Well, in this case the drive isn't even being selected at all and the drive light does not come on. But that is an interesting point, the issue could just be the way it wires up the drive and not the FDC chip itself.

          Comment


            #6
            Did you notice the file
            Code:
            \        HEP    12928   1-24-83   1:33a
            ?

            That's weird. At any rate, if you'd like, I can image the floppy and email the image to you--but I'll need you to PM me an email for that. VCF doesn't have any way to send large files.
            Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Gabucino View Post
              Additional note: the "PCE" emulator can use the Eagle BIOS (therefore most probably a real XT can as well)
              Interesting. If a generic XT board can boot with that BIOS, then theoretically it might be able to use that SASI interface and controller card. Might have to try that some time.

              Originally posted by Chuck(G) View Post
              Did you notice the file
              Code:
              \        HEP    12928   1-24-83   1:33a
              ?

              That's weird.
              Perfectly valid file name under DOS 1.x. And I suspect that is what this machine had installed originally. Also notice how almost everything is in the root directory. Well, I guess some people still try and do that

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by SomeGuy View Post
                Perfectly valid file name under DOS 1.x. And I suspect that is what this machine had installed originally. Also notice how almost everything is in the root directory. Well, I guess some people still try and do that
                Oh sure--and yes, DOS 1.x allowed this--and DOS 2.x still honored the "switch character" API, although many, if not most third-party programs didn't bother to check. I think that massive lack of conformity was why the API was declared to be obsolete so quickly.

                IIRC, if you set SWITCHAR=- in CONFIG.SYS (or AH=37H DOS API) in 2.x, the path separator automatically switches to '/'. Some Windows versions still accept "/" in CLI mode for builtin commands; e.g. "cd /windows/system32" still lands you in the right place in XP at least.
                Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Bummer, finally got a chance to try that disk image and this version of hdinit still doesn't seem to work. It complains about not being able to "read drive parameters", which doesn't sound right given the caliber of this controller. So if this is really for the 1600, they must have switched up controllers at some point, or there is something in the usage, such as a command line switch, that I am missing.

                  But I did figure out how to fix the issue with the keyboard arrow keys. The bundled keyboard.com file switches between their keyboard types. So all I have to do is run "keyboard 84" to select an 84-key IBM compatible keyboard (or AT style with an 8088 switch), and the arrow keys start working correctly. "keyboard 105" switches to their proprietary keyboard.

                  As the built in help explains (Yay! built in help!) the Eagle 1600 and Eagle PC default to their 105 key keyboard, and the Eagle PC Plus, Spirit, and Turbo default to the IBM 84 key keyboard. But all can be switched with this utility.

                  Well at least now we know one of the differences between the Eagle PC and Eagle PC Plus!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Exactly what does this thing use for a SASI controller? Back around then, there were several flavors. There were MFM/RLL->SASI "bridges" and then there were drives with an integrated SASI interface.
                    Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Oops, it looks like I forgot the picture of the SASI Controller/Bridge. Added.

                      To summarize, the motherboard has this nondescript ISA SASI I/O interface card plugged in, and BIOS support seems to be in the motherboard BIOS:
                      Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?mjkwn

                      This "interface" card then connects to a XEBEC controller or bridge circuit board that is mounted in the case underneath the floppy drive.
                      Picture:http://lucasm.cf/?y2uxy
                      The controller is marked Assy 104525 Rev-06 / 73-106, and reportedly is the same thing used in their 8-bit Z80 machines.

                      Then this has cables that connect to a Computer Memories Inc, Model CM 5412 10mb MFM hard drive.
                      Picture: http://lucasm.cf/?zjvmn

                      What I have done is attach a Seagate ST-251 to the XEBEC bridge in place of the damaged drive. If the geometry is hard coded, it should still meet the minimum geometry requirements and use only 10mb of the capacity.

                      The machine DOES sense the Seagate drive, because at bootup it pauses until the drive finishes spinning up and enters the READY state. If it did not, then it would either immediately issue a boot error or boot directly from the floppy.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        here are some Eagle service documents

                        http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/pdf/eagleComputer/

                        8-bit images would be nice to add to the archive

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Ah, the 1600_Series_Training_Notes.pdf document describes a "Test and Initialization Disk" that contains diagnostics for the system and hard drive that includes formatting.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            In case it is useful to anyone, I have come across the Eagle 1630/40 Software Master disk for the Eagle 1600 series PC:



                            http://s000.tinyupload.com/index.php...01346285039512

                            This contains the default software loaded on the hard drive: EagleCalc (Lattice spreadsheet), EagleWrite (Spellbinder), and MS-DOS 1.25 application files - but annoyingly, not the DOS system files or the low level formatter diagnostic tool.

                            According to the document on Bitsavers, this disk would have been accompanied by a similar disk labeled : "Test and Initialization Diskette", and that would contain the bootable DOS system files, diagnostics, and formatter.

                            If anybody ever comes across the Test and Initialization Diskette, please let me know!
                            Attached Files

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Since the linked image host is long gone, here are the images, sized down to fit on the forum. If anyone wants larger images just PM me.

                              Card Floppy Front.jpg
                              Floppy controller card

                              Card Parallel Front.jpg
                              Parallel card

                              Card SASI Front.jpg
                              SASI interface card

                              Card Serial Front.jpg
                              Serial card

                              Card Video Front.jpg
                              Mono video card

                              Floppy Drive.jpg
                              Floppy drive

                              Hard Drive Back.jpg
                              Hard drive

                              SASI Controller - Top.jpg
                              SASI bridge board

                              And the BIOS is on http://www.minuszerodegrees.net/rom/rom.htm

                              Also, my statement about not recognizing expansion ROMs is probably wrong. It looks like mine has an odd issue reading memory on the ISA bus, but since the only memory on the bus is normally the video card RAM, it still boots and runs. There is code in the BIOS for finding expansion ROMs.

                              At the risk of sounding like a chatterbot... still looking for the "Test and Initialization Diskette".

                              Comment

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