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.

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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IDE hard drive on an IBM PC Convertible

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    Did any progress get made on this? I've always loved the 5140, since first playing with one, not long after they were released.

    I also have a fully functional 5140, that I've been playing with.

    - Alex


      Originally posted by ajacocks View Post
      Did any progress get made on this?
      So I guess it depends on how you define "progress". I have gotten my grubby talons on a 5140. Unfortunately it's a... ridden hard and put away wet specimen. I haven't had a lot of time to work with it yet but I did spend a few hours this last weekend trying to at least get it running:


      The keyboard is really badly shot; I have all the keys at least registering now, enough were completely dead that I couldn't really uses the machine (letter G, number 3, period...), but it took some soldering. The ALPS keyswitches in it are pretty badly corroded and I'm not sure if they're the stock ones or if someone swapped the ones that are in there for more desirable originals? Solder joints on the keyboard's PCB are kind of suspiciously bad. The machine is still hanging at random sometimes, especially when accessing the B floppy drive. Hopefully I can get the kinks smoothed down enough to feel like I can trust trying to engineer something with it.

      I haven't had a chance to crack open the parallel-serial module and start buzzing the connections to its internal card edge yet. I assume they're mostly mapped 1:1 with the back-edge connector but they could be swapped/mirrored. If anyone out there has a line on the female mating connector for the modules so I could target that directly that would still be awesome.
      My Retro-computing YouTube Channel (updates... eventually?): Paleozoic PCs Also: Blogspot


        Picking up this thread again after a lengthy hiatus...

        Originally posted by Chuck(G) View Post
        Anyone got an accurate photo? Maybe I can help.
        I finally got around to cracking open the parallel/serial slice for an IBM Convertible. The slice contains a circuit board with an edge connector that plugs into this weird little splitter assembly that has two of the connectors that would be *really* nice to be able to find, in two versions.

        The heart of the connector is a circuit board which makes up the male passthrough connector, which has a total of 72 contacts split into two 2x18 sections. The female connector facing the computer is soldered to what looks like an identical card edge using a version of the connector that has two rows of inwardly canted fingers, while the female connector that faces upwards is through-hole with four staggered rows of pins.

        Unless I miscounted twice pitch of the connectors appears to be about 16 contacts per inch. I've completely failed to turn up any hits for any standard or metric translation of that I could come up with. This whole assembly appears to have been made by one company, the female connectors have molded into them the same double-sided "P" / slash / badly made pretzel logo you can see on the bottom of the PCB. Here's some pictures.


        If anyone has any hint as to where a batch of the female connectors could be had (I'd settle for either the edge-on or the through hole) that's be awesome.
        Last edited by Eudimorphodon; May 2, 2020, 12:59 PM.
        My Retro-computing YouTube Channel (updates... eventually?): Paleozoic PCs Also: Blogspot