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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PC/IX Images

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  • tdsherman325
    Originally posted by Jorg View Post
    So.. are these images still somewhere? The link seems to be dead.
    I'm using the set from WinWorld here:

    Leave a comment:

  • Jorg
    So.. are these images still somewhere? The link seems to be dead.

    Leave a comment:

  • tdsherman325
    So, I've got an XT with a compatible controller and a 20Mb hard drive and I gave it a go. I was able to boot it up and start the installation but my hard disk has too many bad tracks in the first couple megabytes. In XENIX, I can just move the partition forwards a bit, but PC/IX only recognizes the first 305 cylinders. Definitely only meant to work with 10Mb hard drives.

    I've got another hard drive on the way - hopefully it will be relatively error-free.

    Leave a comment:

  • nigwil
    Originally posted by md95065 View Post
    In fact there were two target platforms for SCO's 8086/88 port of XENIX - one was the PC/XT and the other was a Burroughs machine running BTOS where XENIX actually ran as a task under BTOS (similar to the way in which, today, Linux supports a "user mode" platform aka UML where it runs as a user mode process).
    thanks for highlighting this, I did not know that Xenix could run as a task on CTOS, there is a reference here:

    Leave a comment:

  • Svenska
    I did install AIX on a generic 486 machine a long time ago, and it ran fine.
    Never got X to work, though. The installation took forever.
    You have to boot from the correct floppy for it to work, though.

    However, I did play with PC/IX for quite a bit longer and took some notes a few years ago. It's basically a System III.

    It appears that using a 20 MB disk is possible in PCE (so PC/IX does handle them), but I could not get them to work in PCem unfortunately. However, it is possible to attach a second 10 MB disk (/dev/hd4 is what Linux calls sdb1) and mount it automatically as /home. In order to do so, add the new disk (use the maintenance disk to partition and mkfs), and then add the following to /etc/filesystems:
    	dev = /dev/hd4
    	vol = "IBMPC1"
    	mount = automatic
    	check = true
    	free  = true
    In order to enable logins on the first serial port (tty0), add the following to /etc/ports:
    	enabled = true
    	term    = vt100
    Also, for sane backspace and interrupt behaviour, add the following to /etc/profile:
    if [ "$TERM" != "ibmpc" ]; then
    	stty intr "^c"
    	stty erase "^?"
    The "date" command does not handle dates past 1999, so I wrote a small tool to automatically set the system date and time from the PCE real-time clock: rtcdate.txt. Just copy the code into the system as rtcdate.c and run "make rtcdate" to compile. Call it from /etc/rc (replacing the existing date and time logic) to set the correct date and time automatically. This should work until 2038, when the epoch overflows.

    Unfortunately, I haven't been able to compile any vi, and ed certainly is no fun. While it is possible to run "configure" scripts, they eventually run out of environment space.

    Leave a comment:

  • WBST
    If you guys are interested in old IBM Unix-like software, there is also AIX for PS/2 (MicroChannel-based system only?):
    AIX for PS/2 v1.3
    Not something that I've played with myself. Kudos to Ardent-Blue and the denizens of NG

    Leave a comment:

  • tt0ny
    with IBM Xebex MFM Controller Variation #1 not works for me ( "can not open unix" means can not found the partition)
    but with Variation #2 booting from the partition 2 correct now

    Originally posted by tt0ny View Post
    does anybody can boot from fixdisk ? i can only boot hd0:/unix over the maintenance disk


    Leave a comment:

  • tt0ny
    does anybody can boot from fixdisk ? i can only boot hd0:/unix over the maintenance disk


    Leave a comment:

  • bear
    Originally posted by labspencer View Post
    WD1002A-WX1 controller
    You need the IBM Xebec controller, or at least one that is register-compatible.

    Leave a comment:

  • md95065
    Originally posted by tenox View Post
    Funny enough Xenix 86 was developed after 286 that is 1.0 version of Xenix was developed by Microsoft for 286 and the ported by SCO to XT.
    In fact there were two target platforms for SCO's 8086/88 port of XENIX - one was the PC/XT and the other was a Burroughs machine running BTOS where XENIX actually ran as a task under BTOS (similar to the way in which, today, Linux supports a "user mode" platform aka UML where it runs as a user mode process).

    Separately, Altos had their own version of Microsoft XENIX running on the 8086 based Altos 586 which had some MMU type functionality implemented in hardware.

    Leave a comment:

  • labspencer

    just wondering if anyone managed to get the PC/IX installed on a real XT class machine in the end, I just tried on an IBM XT and manged to complete the install but got the 'panic blkdev' error on reboot. Its a long install so was hoping for some advice before trying again, do you need to keep it exactly within the specs laid out in a previous post above:

    The minimum hardware configuration for the IBM Personal Computer XT consists of:
    1 IBM Personal Computer XT System Unit/Keyboard (Model 5160087), which includes the following:

    - 1 Dual Sided Diskette Drive;
    - 1 10 MB Fixed Disk Drive;
    - 1 Asynchronous Communications Support Adapter;
    - 128 KB of Memory.

    - 2 64 KB Memory Module Kits (Option 1501003), for a total of 256 KB of memory.
    - 1 IBM Monochrome Display (Option 5151001) and Adapter (Option 1504900)
    -1 IBM Color Display (Option 5153001) and Adapter (Option 1504910); the Color Display is supported in text mode only.

    I have an original IBM XT 256-640k motherboard with 640k, the May '86 bios with a generic Hercules mono graphics card and 10MB mfm hard drive on WD1002A-WX1 controller. i don't have the 8087 or asynchronous serial card installed so would this cause the error is it more likely to be down to the graphics card/hard drive controller not being specific enough?

    I appreciate there is a emulator with PC/IX installed but wanted to try it out on real hardware so any advice is greatly appreciated.



    Leave a comment:

  • jonnymacuser
    Originally posted by Klee View Post
    I had zero trouble making a bootable disk , my trouble is on the install and reboot.

    I dont remember which program I used to make the images , used a Windows 98 pc in DOS mode to do it as I had issues making it in a DOS window in Windows98.
    Would you be able to make an image file/copy of your bootable disk?

    Leave a comment:

  • Klee
    I had zero trouble making a bootable disk , my trouble is on the install and reboot.

    I dont remember which program I used to make the images , used a Windows 98 pc in DOS mode to do it as I had issues making it in a DOS window in Windows98.

    Leave a comment:

  • jonnymacuser
    Anybody have any tips/suggestions for making a 5.25" floppy disk of the 01MAINT.IMD in order to boot this on an XT?

    When I run:

    C:\...IMDU 01MAINT.IMD

    I get:

    IMageDisk Utility 1.16
    IMD 1.17: 24/05/2008 10:10:06
    PCIX Maintenance diskette
    Use for install also
    0/0 250 kbps DD 9x512
    80 tracks (40/40), 720 sectors (359 data, 361 compressed, 0 unavail)

    Then my settings in IMD are:

    Drive : A
    Cylinders : 40
    Sides : Two
    Double-step : Off
    R/W gap : Calculated
    Format gap : Calculated
    Format fill : E5
    Full Analysis : No
    Interleave : As read
    Retries : 5
    500 kbps -> : 500 kbps
    300 kbps -> : 300 kbps
    250 kbps -> : 250 kbps

    When I boot from the 5.25" floppy -- my 5151 display flashes then displays a blinking cursor that can be moved by the keyboard ... typing the "ls" command does something (floppy light starts blinking) ... but nothing on the screen ...

    Leave a comment:

  • Klee
    Did not work but it did not error out at the "can't find UNIX" error but just froze after it said "booting UNIX "......I guess thats an improvement. LOL

    I might try an older MFM controller and low level format the drive to it and try again. Now I'm thinking it might have issues with the newer, made in 1989, controller card.

    Originally posted by Klee View Post
    VERY interesting!!! And good work!!

    I have tried to install PC/IX on a Compaq Deskpro 8086 and a clone 8088 and have went through the installer to install it to the hard drive but it errors out when I try to boot off the hard drive.

    What is hardware is needed to boot PC/IX from the hard drive?

    I do not have an IBM pc to play with only clones and both have failed to boot after the install. Does it have to have the IBM PC rom chips?

    EDIT: I just started the emulator and removed the ibm basic rom from the rom folder and it still booted into PC/IX so it does not need the rom chips to boot.

    Looks like i'm gonna make some more floppys and try one more time!!LOL

    Leave a comment: