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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Reminder: Installing CP/M on your S-100 computer workshop, signup started

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    Reminder: Installing CP/M on your S-100 computer workshop, signup started

    Installing CP/M on your S-100 computer workshop

    signup has started, seats are limited

    If you have other computers such as the Kaypro,
    Advantage, etc which already have CP/M running, you can
    use this too. They just need to be 100% working. As this is
    not a repair workshop.

    Basically, even though it would have CP/M already running
    on this, the hands-on training will show you all the technical
    details about how to configure and install CP/M on your
    current machine. Then you can apply this knowledge to any
    other machine that wouldn't have CP/M already.

    You would need to get prepared with all the technical manuals
    for your machine to extract the configuration info so you can
    edit and patch the CP/M source code to support your
    machine(that's what you will learn). We would help in locating
    any manuals you might be missing.

    For the vintage computer enthusiasts, in conjunction with
    the MARCH Computer Museum and the Delaware Hackerspace
    group, we like to invite you to a new workshop this year
    involving vintage computers.

    This new workshop is about CP/M and it will
    teach you how to install, build and configure CP/M on your
    vintage S-100 computer system. All the necessary steps are
    shown during the lecture and afterward is a hands-on
    training session which will let you upgrade your S-100
    computer with a floppy disk based system and CP/M.
    Instruction and lecture will be provided by Rich Cini of
    the Altair32 emulator project.

    Please look at the link below about the workshop checklist
    for a detailed list of requirements about this workshop.
    You'll need to know what to prepare beforehand to get ready
    for this workshop. Ask any questions you have about getting
    ready before the start of the workshop. A knowledge of
    assembly programming, S-100 hardware, and CP/M operation is
    required for this workshop. Please do not come unprepared.

    We currently have seats for 12 workbenches for those who
    want the hands-on training. An additional 10 seats are
    available for those who like to watch and learn. If we
    happen to get more requests for this workshop, we will try
    to accommodate as many people as possible. This is a first
    come, first serve event, sorry, but we cannot accommodate
    latecomers. Once the registration opens, please specify
    which seat you like to reserve.

    The workshop is located very close to I-95 for those that
    are drivng. More information can be found at the
    Delaware Hackerspace website below.

    Workshop Checklist - view message thread

    103 W. 7th St.
    Wilmington, DE 19801

    Registration opens:
    Feb. 1st, 2010

    Signup deadline:
    Apr. 1st, 2010

    Workshop Date:
    Apr. 10th, 2010
    hours: Sat: 12noon - 7pm

    Bill Degnan

    Delaware Hackerspace

    Altair32 emulator project

    MARCH Computer Museum

    Please send any questions offline.
    Dan Roganti

    see you there !
    Dan Roganti
    my corner of cyberspace
    Vintage Computer Federation

    Any thoughts on publishing a video of the event or archiving it on the site?
    Looking to acquire: IBM 5100, Altair 8800