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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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Debian 11

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    Debian 11

    Been mucking around with various lite linux distros on various systems out in the garage. Decided to have a go at installing32 bit Debian 11 on my NEC PowerMate VT socket 370 Cereron 800 system with just 256megs of ram. The installation went swimmingly with no problems at all https://www.reddit.com/r/debian/comm...ne_debian_crew
    Thomas Byers (DRI)- "You'll have a million people using the A> [MS-DOS prompt] forever. You'll have five million using [nongraphic] menu systems such as Topview, Concurrent PC-DOS, Desq, and those types. But there'll be 50 to 100 million using the iconic-based interfaces."

    #2
    Yup--just upgraded a couple of systems running Buster to Bullseye. I partition my disks, so that / resides on its own 50GB partition and /home on a different one. Rather than upgrade in place, I learned to simply re-install the new distro from scratch and then add any needed packages. No problems at all.
    Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

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      #3
      Just upgraded a couple more systems with Bullseye that had hosted Buster. Clean install, while keeping the /home directory. Make adjustments to lightdm to enable autologin, edit the apt sources.list to include contrib and non-free repos, add my account to the sudo group and re-install applications, (I keep a list for handy reference). Even runs dosemu from the stretch repo. This time, almost easy.

      Reading through the release notes, it's stated that using something other than systemd for init is better supported. That should be welcome news to the anti-systemd people.
      Last edited by Chuck(G); October 8, 2021, 10:23 AM.
      Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

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        #4
        One thing that I would recommend is de-installing Firefox ESR and installing the current stable branch. ESR is getting a little creaky and doesn't always play well with other programs like Thunderbird. You can use your ESR profile by selecting it in the about: profiles page.
        Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

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          #5
          Personally I've had no issues at all with Firefox ESR. This 3.2ghz P4 HT system with LMDE4 upgraded to version 94 last week.
          Thomas Byers (DRI)- "You'll have a million people using the A> [MS-DOS prompt] forever. You'll have five million using [nongraphic] menu systems such as Topview, Concurrent PC-DOS, Desq, and those types. But there'll be 50 to 100 million using the iconic-based interfaces."

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            #6
            Well, on my 32-bit systems, I'm still on 10 with ESR, but my 64 bit ones are on 11 with current Firefox.
            Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

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              #7
              I just put Bullseye on a 2.8GHz P4 and it went pretty smoothly (my first time doing a Debian install). I only have 512MB RAM so some terrible swapping when using Firefox. Really could use an SSD and more RAM if I keep this machine.

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