Forum Rules and Etiquette

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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
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  • 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.
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  • 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:
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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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dos replacement for pkunzip that support FPU

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    dos replacement for pkunzip that support FPU

    Hi guys, here another one of my dumb questions but i was using the TDL menu and each time i run a game it unpacks it.
    Theres any replacement for pkzip-pkunzip that uses an FPU to "run faster" ?, for 8088 or also even for a 386 ?.

    There are a few recent compression programs that used floating point for no benefit. I am fairly sure that no compression code running on a 386 or earlier used floating point so x87 coprocessors won't help. There were specialized compression chips like the one from Stac but I don't know of any version of pkzip that would offload work to one of those.

    Is there any method for decompressing all the files from TDL and keeping it that way? The second run shouldn't need anymore decompression time delay. I am not sure what TDL is so I don't know how it works.


      Knowing how zip compression works, I doubt you can even gain 1% more speed by using the FPU. Compression is not encryption, there's not much maths done there, let alone floating-point maths. The only calculation-heavy part are the CRC32 hashes, which are created for every fine to ensure integrity.


        FPU won't help with zip compression. May as well add in a stereo sound card.

        There's no floating point in zip. It's all adds, shifts, and masking (since zip is a bitstream, not a byte stream). And an FPU doesn't do integer math any faster than the base CPU.


          Originally posted by soviet9922 View Post
          Hi guys, here another one of my dumb questions but i was using the TDL menu and each time i run a game it unpacks it.
          Theres any replacement for pkzip-pkunzip that uses an FPU to "run faster" ?, for 8088 or also even for a 386 ?.
          TDL author here. It should only unzip the first time; after that, it just launches out of the cache directory. If it's unzipping every single time, let me know.

          One of the wish-list requests is a command-line option that can pre-unzip all your titles (something to run overnight, perhaps) as well as intelligent cache management. There is no ETA for those features at this time.

          As others have stated, there is no way to speed up unzipping with a floating-point coprocessor. No floating-point math is involved in zip decompression.
          Offering a bounty for:
          - A working Sanyo MBC-775 or Logabax 1600
          - Music Construction Set, IBM Music Feature edition (has red sticker on front stating IBM Music Feature)


            ...and if you're talking about doing integer math in the FPU, the result would likely be slower, not faster.
            Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.