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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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Recommendations on a system monitor board

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    Recommendations on a system monitor board

    My IMSAI 8080 is now to the point where it is largely rehabilitated: I undid some of the questionable modifications made by its prior owner (don't ask about how I got a solder burn on my foot), it runs and operates sample programs, the panel LEDs work, the switches (mostly) don't stick, and I'm confident in the current RAM card and Z80 CPU card.

    It came with a Technical Design Labs SMB card which doesn't seem to do anything when installed. I'm pretty sure the jumpers are set right per the manual, though I'm reexamining the wiring to the rear port since I don't really trust much of what the previous owner did. I'd like something that's a little more idiot-proof, though, because I'm a special kind of idiot.

    What are people using as system monitors on their systems and what would you recommend?
    I use my C128 because I am an ornery, stubborn, retro grouch. -- Bob Masse
    Various projects and oddities: http://oldvcr.blogspot.com/
    Machine room: http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

    #2
    For my IMSAI I use CUTTER, but DAJEN makes a nice one called SCI, and Vector Graphic ZCB running port 4/5 monitor appears to port well to almost anything. WHat's really imporant is that you have something that is port compatible with your I/O card, if they're separate.
    @ BillDeg:
    Web: vintagecomputer.net
    Twitter: @billdeg
    Youtube: @billdeg
    Unauthorized Bio

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      #3
      I'm using either M84 or Mon-88
      retro computing at: www.neoncluster.com ....is dead

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by billdeg View Post
        For my IMSAI I use CUTTER, but DAJEN makes a nice one called SCI, and Vector Graphic ZCB running port 4/5 monitor appears to port well to almost anything. WHat's really imporant is that you have something that is port compatible with your I/O card, if they're separate.
        I don't have a separate I/O card. Do these require one?
        I use my C128 because I am an ornery, stubborn, retro grouch. -- Bob Masse
        Various projects and oddities: http://oldvcr.blogspot.com/
        Machine room: http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

        Comment


          #5
          Many RAM cards (Tanner for example) had spaces for installing a few ROMs as well, or in place or RAM. In these places one could put a ROM chip (eg. 2716) that could be called from the front panel. Any Serial card waiting for I/O on the ports the ROM was using would be suitable to use the ROM. In some cases you also needed a video card as well, the serial card may only handle the keyboard. It was complex, and often the default was a teletype. Later in the 70's people started coming out with all in one S-100 cards with I/O, video, and a ROM monitor that could be used to call a disk boot routine, also configured with port I/O to match.

          Short answer, the DAJEN SCI is such a card. CUTTER is the old style, requiring a serial card for the keyboard, and a separate card for video. The key is to understand what ports are available "set via jumper" so that all cards are working together. Add to that the fact that old hardware may have faults that are hard to track down.

          I'd suggest a new S-100 card for serial I/O
          http://www.s100computers.com/Cards%20For%20Sale.htm
          see in particular something like
          http://www.s100computers.com/My%20Sy...IO%20Board.htm
          @ BillDeg:
          Web: vintagecomputer.net
          Twitter: @billdeg
          Youtube: @billdeg
          Unauthorized Bio

          Comment


            #6
            Alas, I'm mostly all thumbs with a soldering iron except for simple tasks. I'll look for something pre-assembled.
            I use my C128 because I am an ornery, stubborn, retro grouch. -- Bob Masse
            Various projects and oddities: http://oldvcr.blogspot.com/
            Machine room: http://www.floodgap.com/etc/machines.html

            Comment

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