Announcement

Collapse

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.
See more
See less

Recovering an Unistride QIC tape...

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Recovering an Unistride QIC tape...

    I have at my desk an Unistride 2.1 distribution tape, in a QIC-24 format. This is a Unix for the Sage/Stride 4xx systems, standard QIC drive for these systems was an Archive 5945L
    I read this tape on a Linux box with a Wangtek 5150ES SCSI streamer twice , and obtained the identical binary blob of ca. 6MB, no errors reported.
    However the resulting binary blob reveals no readable strings inside.

    What am I overlooking ?

    BTW I have recovered around 70 original Sage/Stride software distribution floppies, in addition to Unistride. If anyone is still messing around with these I can put them online.

    Jos

    #2
    Did the tape contain only that singe 6MB file, or did other files follow? For a Unix distribution I'd expect a root file system image followed by dumps of any other file systems (e.g. /usr). If the system doesn't natively have utilities to copy from tape to disk, I'd also expect such utilities (and a boot block if needed) prepended at the start of the tape.

    Comment


      #3
      Just that file. But there are separate floppies with boot code-boot block, root file system and (MFM-)harddisk-partitioning.

      Comment


        #4
        Perhaps you could post a segment (or the entire file) and elicit some opinions.
        Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

        Comment


          #5
          I've put it up at ftp://ftp.dreesen.ch/Sage&Stride/Uni...stride_2.1.bin
          (That is the raw output from linux' dd if=/dev/tape... )

          Comment


            #6
            My initial impression with a quick look is that your file is notable for the lack of 00 bytes. Lots of FF bytes, however, so my first impulse would be to take the ones' complement of the data and see if the result makes more sense. I suppose it could also be possible that this data has been run through some sort of compression.
            Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

            Comment


              #7
              bingo! it's 1's compliment cpio file of the root file system

              -rw-r--r-- 1 root _lpoperator 150 Aug 4 1987 .login
              -rwxr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 91 Aug 4 1987 .profile
              -r--r--r-- 1 root wheel 19178 Jan 12 1988 Changelog
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 7002 Dec 17 1987 Config
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 1681 Mar 27 1987 Update
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 18064 Dec 17 1987 bin/cat
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 21474 Dec 7 1987 bin/chgrp
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 19256 Dec 7 1987 bin/chmod
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 21470 Dec 7 1987 bin/chown
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 14482 Sep 22 1986 bin/cmp
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 19422 Dec 7 1987 bin/cp
              -r-xr-xr-x 2 root _lpoperator 37866 Jun 1 1987 bin/cpio
              -r-xr-xr-x 2 root _lpoperator 37866 Jun 1 1987 bin/cpio5120 link to bin/cpio
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 20006 Dec 17 1987 bin/dd
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 37794 Apr 14 1987 bin/diff
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 5540 Sep 22 1986 bin/echo
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 8962 Sep 22 1986 bin/expr
              -r-xr-xr-x 8 root _lpoperator 61 Mar 18 1985 bin/false
              -r-xr-xr-x 2 root _lpoperator 41376 Dec 15 1987 bin/rshell
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 26296 Dec 17 1987 bin/ls
              -r-sr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 15248 Apr 16 1987 bin/mkdir
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 68772 Jun 1 1987 bin/dis
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 14482 Sep 22 1986 bin/pwd
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 19554 Dec 15 1987 bin/rm
              -r-sr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 13644 Sep 22 1986 bin/rmdir
              -r-sr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 29396 Dec 15 1987 bin/su
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 2060 Sep 22 1986 bin/sync
              -r-xr-xr-x 1 root _lpoperator 31606 Mar 16 1987 bin/tar
              -r-

              Comment


                #8
                I would expect there to be /usr on the next file. you did do the dd with the no-rewind tape device?

                Comment


                  #9
                  That was too easy!
                  Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Al Kossow View Post
                    I would expect there to be /usr on the next file. you did do the dd with the no-rewind tape device?
                    I did, the next file immediatly returned an error. I assumed it was EOT, looking at the remaining tape in the cartridge.
                    I'll check again tomorrow if there is more on the tape.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Are you certain that your drive is reading the correct format? A single QIC-24 track is about 6MB. Do any of the other tapes that you have show more than 6 MB? (should show up to 60).

                      Just a thought.
                      Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        That was the second thing i wondered about. A DC600 cartridge in QIC24 format should, as you said, have 60MB. Yet my tape is at the end after just 6.5MB...
                        The SCSI tapedriver in Linux should recognize the tapestandard automatically, that should not be the issue. Anyhow reading the tape with a QIC02 drive yielded the exact same result.

                        Yes, there are more files on the tape, i can read around 500KB extra, then it spits out errors due to mechanical damage to the tape. Must have been wrinkeled at some time...

                        Some more /bin files, not a single /usr file though

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Do you have any other cartridges to look at? Nominal capacity per track of QIC24 is about 6.6MB per track, which makes me suspicious.
                          Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            No other QIC24 tapes around....
                            The Wangtek has no issues reading 150MB tapes at full capacity.

                            Reading some of the recovered files reveals that there should be at least 4 tapefiles....too bad.
                            Can't sent it to someone else as it is not my property.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Too bad--have you tried skipping forward a tapemark (use mt) on the non-rewind device? Sometimes (rarely) you can skip over bad spots
                              Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X