• Retro Computing

    From Android8675@SHODAN to All on Sat Feb 4 09:31:58 2017
    I found a collection of my old PC motherboards (386dx-40, cel-366, amd xp-1800+, etc), got a new PSU with an AT adapter and tried to get them to post, all failed. Was heartbroken, but oh well, now I have a great test bed with a nice collection of pc expansion cards including a nice 4port serial card, several Sound Blasters, and I hope a working LAPC-I (Internal Mt-32 MIDI card)

    I might try to get a P3/slot1 system together as I have a ton of RAM and I think it would make a nice DOS gaming system. I think I need a couple Voodoo cards for it though. Problem is a lot of those niche video cards are hard to come by these days. Gotta keep an eye on the flea markets.

    My other love being Atari. My 8-bit systems are well equiped for modern BBS use thanks to the SIO2PC adapter (Lets your Atari communicate to devices/TCPIP stack through a PC slave). Once I move (hopefully this year) I'm gonna get my ST working properly.

    Love old systems, emulation is nice, but not the same. The only thing I hate about old systems is CRTs. Some systems just don't like modern TVs without heavy modifications, and good LCD panels are really necessary to get old systems looking good.

    It's a pain.
    -A.

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    ■ Synchronet ■ Shodan's Core @ ShodansCore.com (Port 2323 for Nethack)
  • From Mindless Automaton@ELDRITCH to Android8675 on Mon Feb 6 08:36:32 2017
    On 2/4/2017 12:31 PM, Android8675 wrote:
    I found a collection of my old PC motherboards (386dx-40, cel-366, amd xp-1800+, etc), got a new PSU with an AT adapter and tried to get them to post,
    all failed. Was heartbroken, but oh well, now I have a great test bed with a nice collection of pc expansion cards including a nice 4port serial card, several Sound Blasters, and I hope a working LAPC-I (Internal Mt-32 MIDI card)

    I have a nice collection also. Hopefully I can test some of this stuff
    out and get it on ebay. :P

    -Mindless Automaton
    ---
    Synchronet Eldritch Clockwork BBS - eldritch.darktech.org
  • From Zet@ECBBS to Android8675 on Tue Feb 7 10:53:06 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Android8675 to All on Sat Feb 04 2017 09:31:58

    Love old systems, emulation is nice, but not the same. The only thing I hate about old systems is CRTs. Some systems just don't like modern TVs

    I hear what you're saying (and also, I don't have the most experience with this kind of thing), but I also have to say that the CRT screen in my Mac SE/30 really adds to the experience for me. I was absolutely blown away with how crisp the text is on the little black and white display, and the display totally adds to the whole experience for me.

    Now, obviously I don't really have a lot of other options besides the CRT display (it being one of those compact macs and all), but even if I did, I think I would have tried to stay with what was origianl back in the day.

    I am trying as hard as I can to use this little thing as my daily driver as much as I can, but it's been hard. After connecting it to a Raspberry Pi, I have been more successful, but it is still a battle :)

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    ■ Synchronet ■ electronic chicken bbs - bbs.electronicchicken.com
  • From Kirkman@GUARDIAN to Android8675 on Tue Feb 7 13:17:53 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Android8675 to All on Sat Feb 04 2017 09:31 am

    Love old systems, emulation is nice, but not the same. The only thing I hate about old systems is CRTs. Some systems just don't like modern TVs without heavy modifications, and good LCD panels are really necessary to get old systems looking good.

    I'm very pleased to have an Atari SC1224 for use with my MegaSTE. But if I had a larger collection, I can see how having a bunch of CRTs would quickly become unwieldy.

    --Josh

    ////--------------------------------------------------
    BiC -=- http://breakintochat.com -=- bbs wiki and blog

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  • From Soul Engine@ASIRTA to All on Wed Feb 8 01:30:58 2017
    What really is a challenge for me with retrocomputing is space. If I have space for an old system, that means I also have space for a new one.

    As much as I love the idea of running old systems, the reality is I set them up, play with them awhile, and then they gather dust and serve as clutter.

    I have a few old serial terminals here which work well with Linux, three Apple // systems of various configurations, a TI-99/4a, an IBM 5150 ("IBM PC"), and a Commodore 128.

    At some point I hope to move to a place where I have a very large room where I can rationalize them taking up space.

    Most of the time, emulation gets me where I need to go if I want to, say, call a BBS in Telemate or something (DOSBox + tcpser). VICE and other emulators handle the 8 bit stuff.

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  • From Vk3jed@FREEWAY to Soul Engine on Thu Feb 9 07:50:00 2017
    Soul Engine wrote to All <=-

    What really is a challenge for me with retrocomputing is space. If I
    have space for an old system, that means I also have space for a new
    one.

    Space and money. I have an Apple ][ to restore. The main (and possibly only) fault it has is a blown PSU. Unfortunately, I don't have the original one, otherwise it would have been easy to buy a kit to rebuild it to modern specs (i.e. better than new), so I will have to do a bit of trawling around when I get the time and money for parts. :) I also have to source a suitable composite monitor. The ones I've had over the years have been tossed (not by me!) over the years.

    And yes, space is definitely an issue too. I can fit several dozen R-Pi units in the space the Apple occupies

    As much as I love the idea of running old systems, the reality is I set them up, play with them awhile, and then they gather dust and serve as clutter.

    Yeah, I can understand that.

    Most of the time, emulation gets me where I need to go if I want to,
    say, call a BBS in Telemate or something (DOSBox + tcpser). VICE and other emulators handle the 8 bit stuff.

    Yeah, emulation certainly has its place. I still need the old machine to attempt to copy my floppies to disk images. :)


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  • From Android8675@SHODAN to Mindless Automaton on Thu Feb 16 08:27:30 2017
    Re: Re: Retro Computing
    By: Mindless Automaton to Android8675 on Mon Feb 06 2017 08:36 am

    I have a nice collection also. Hopefully I can test some of this stuff out and get it on ebay. :P

    I can't sell stuff anymore. I'd rather find a place to store it. I'm buying all this great stuff AGAIN that I used to own when I was younger. I really wish I had kept my ST and some of my other PC systems, but oh well. Now a days I'm hoarding, even some dead stuff. I'd rather give it to someone that might be able to get it working than to sell it on eBay.

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    ■ Synchronet ■ Shodan's Core @ ShodansCore.com (Port 2323 for Nethack)
  • From Android8675@SHODAN to Zet on Thu Feb 16 08:35:49 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Zet to Android8675 on Tue Feb 07 2017 10:53 am

    I hear what you're saying (and also, I don't have the most experience with this kind of thing), but I also have to say that the CRT screen in my Mac SE/30 really adds to the experience for me. I was absolutely blown away with how crisp the text is on the little black and white display, and the display totally adds to the whole experience for me.

    Old Mac's are great, I'm trying to get a Color Classic ][ (Last all-in-one made in that old design style), it's got a modular mainboard that you can replace with a newer motherboard giving you a great color Mac in an all in one. I have my father-in-laws old G3 (Blue Tower case with white handles), and G4 Mac Pro (one of the earlier aluminum cases) that I need to freshen up and get into service (when I move).

    If you want to see an awesome monitor, see if you can find a Vectrex video game system, it's a little 9" screen that uses a Vecter Monitor, draws point to point graphics. Think Tempest, Battle Zone, Asteroids, etc.

    I am trying as hard as I can to use this little thing as my daily driver as much as I can, but it's been hard. After connecting it to a Raspberry Pi, I have been more successful, but it is still a battle :)

    Yeah, my Atari systems have great interfaces that allow them to use PCs as a go between for storage and network access. I got a CFFA3000 for an Apple ][+ (works with //e and ][gs as well) which lets you run floppies from a USB stick, but I don't have anything to give it network access (yet).

    Yeah, old systems are fun. Just watched a video of this 18yo who bought a 2500lbs IBM z890 mainframe and got it running in his basement. Old computers are awesome... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45X4VP8CGtk

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    ■ Synchronet ■ Shodan's Core @ ShodansCore.com (Port 2323 for Nethack)
  • From Poindexter Fortran@REALITY to Android8675 on Mon Feb 20 06:59:26 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Android8675 to Zet on Thu Feb 16 2017 08:35 am

    Old Mac's are great, I'm trying to get a Color Classic ][ (Last all-in-one made in that old design style), it's got a modular mainboard that you can replace with a newer motherboard giving you a great color Mac in an all in one.

    The best computer I EVER used was a Mac IIci with a cache card, 12 mb of RAM, 80 MB internal and 1GB external drives. System 6 back then. That thing never crashed.

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    ■ Synchronet ■ realitycheckBBS -- http://realitycheckBBS.org
  • From Android8675@ECBBS to Poindexter Fortran on Wed Feb 22 13:14:37 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Poindexter Fortran to Android8675 on Mon Feb 20 2017 06:59:26

    Old Mac's are great, I'm trying to get a Color Classic ][ (Last
    all-in-one made in that old design style), it's got a modular
    mainboard that you can replace with a newer motherboard giving you a
    great color Mac in an all in one.

    The best computer I EVER used was a Mac IIci with a cache card, 12 mb of RAM, 80 MB internal and 1GB external drives. System 6 back then. That thing never crashed.

    I have backup disk images of system 6. I need a MAC with a floppy drive to write them out so I can install the OS on some old mac systems. I found out recently that my Atari ST could accomplish this with a Happy Discovery Cart from the TOS desktop, OR I could write them out via Spectre GCR emulation. I got the GCR cart, but I don't have any disks to install the Mac OS on my ST so the thing won't boot.

    It's like I'm sooooo close to getting it working, but I'm missing that one stupid Spacely Sprocket that makes it all work.

    Ah well. One of these days when I move I'm building a nerd cave with all these systems setup.

    -A.

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    ■ Synchronet ■ electronic chicken bbs - bbs.electronicchicken.com
  • From Zet@ECBBS to Android8675 on Fri Feb 24 09:55:14 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Android8675 to Poindexter Fortran on Wed Feb 22 2017 13:14:37

    I have backup disk images of system 6. I need a MAC with a floppy drive to write them out so I can install the OS on some old mac systems. I found

    I don't know if there is anything special on the image that you would like to save, but I have been able to create bootable floppies using a USB floppy drive and a Linux/ newer Mac computer.

    It's actually very simple. I downloaded floppy images from MacintoshGarden, and then just simply used the dd command to write the images to the floppies. I was surprised that it worked that easily actually. Obviously, this will not work for 800K floppies, but for normal 1.4mb floppies, this method really worked very well.

    If there isn't anything special on the floppies, this is really a viable way of getting the OS at least installed :)

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    ■ Synchronet ■ electronic chicken bbs - bbs.electronicchicken.com
  • From Poindexter Fortran@REALITY to Zet on Sat Feb 25 07:08:15 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Zet to Android8675 on Fri Feb 24 2017 09:55 am

    this will not work for 800K floppies, but for normal 1.4mb floppies, this method really worked very well.

    I thought 800 K were single sided, but the same density?

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  • From Android8675@SHODAN to Zet on Mon Feb 27 07:50:02 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Zet to Android8675 on Fri Feb 24 2017 09:55 am

    I have backup disk images of system 6. I need a MAC with a floppy
    drive to write them out so I can install the OS on some old mac
    systems. I found

    It's actually very simple. I downloaded floppy images from MacintoshGarden, and then just simply used the dd command to write the images to the floppies. I was surprised that it worked that easily actually. Obviously, this will not work for 800K floppies, but for normal 1.4mb floppies, this method really worked very well.

    Yeah, 800kb floppies is what I need, the Mac CAV (Constant Angular Velocity) drives are pretty much exclusive to Mac and old Amigas I think. Writing out these disk images from non-CAV systems (USB floppies, PC floppy drives, etc) require a hardware mod of some kind or special software. My ST can do it with
    a Happy Discovery Cart, or within a working Mac Spectre GCR enviornment, a working Mac with a floppy drive can do it, but I don't have any of that at the moment.

    I have a bunch of G3 power mac's with system 6, 7 and 9, but no floppy drives attached to those systems.

    Honestly if I thought about it really hard I'd probably find a simple solution, but haven't been very fortunate lately, and I don't have everything setup or laid out so I can look at it all and lego it together.

    Working on a P3/500Mhz system. Got a new Intel Slot1 board online that was sealed for less than $40, finally found a working combination of PC133 ram (only came up with 256MB working out of like 4 gigs worth of old ram), I'm troubleshooting the Sound Blaster Pro which after all these years still sounds amazing, next up is the LAPC-I, and figuring out what OS I want to setup. (I think Win98SE that boots into DOS is going to win). I have to find a nice joystick for my daughter.

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    ■ Synchronet ■ Shodan's Core @ ShodansCore.com (Port 2323 for Nethack)
  • From Android8675@SHODAN to Poindexter Fortran on Mon Feb 27 07:51:33 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Poindexter Fortran to Zet on Sat Feb 25 2017 07:08 am

    this will not work for 800K floppies, but for normal 1.4mb floppies,
    this method really worked very well.

    I thought 800 K were single sided, but the same density?

    Double Sided (DS) / Double Density (DD)

    1.44mb is DS/HD (High Density)

    there is a 2.88mb DS/QD format, but it's rare and died due to the plummetting cost of hard drives at the time.

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    ■ Synchronet ■ Shodan's Core @ ShodansCore.com (Port 2323 for Nethack)
  • From Ennev@MTLGEEK to Android8675 on Sun Mar 5 08:54:23 2017
    Yeah, 800kb floppies is what I need, the Mac CAV (Constant Angular
    Velocity) drives are pretty much exclusive to Mac and old Amigas I think. Writing out these disk images from non-CAV systems (USB floppies, PC floppy drives, etc) require a hardware mod of some kind or special software. My ST can do it with a Happy Discovery Cart, or within a working Mac Spectre GCR enviornment, a working Mac with a floppy drive can do it, but I don't have any of that at the moment.

    amigas did not use CAV but a different format on DSSD 3 1/2 disk. But amiga used 11 sector per track where ibm used 9, that where the difference was, giving 880k instead of the 720k offered on a ibm format. Apple was offering
    800 because of the cav having a variable number of track from 8 to 12.

    Amigas could read ibm format with the proper software it's floppy hardware being more flexible. But if my memory serve it was requiring an actual mac floppy to read them, because it was possible with a piece of hardware where
    you would plug a mac rom to use an amiga as a mac since they where sharing the same processor (68000)

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  • From quadluka@PHARCYDE to Zet on Sun Apr 16 07:34:28 2017
    Re: Retro computing
    By: Zet to All on Fri Jan 27 2017 02:19 pm

    Hi Zet, I own an ibm thinkpad 600x and Apple Powerbook G3 Lombard/Bronze keyboard 333.
    My thinkpad is in working condition although faulty(PC card slots stopped working) so I use it from time to time mostly for some retro gaming. :D
    Feel free to msg me.
    Have a good 1.

    ---
    ■ Synchronet ■ thePharcyde_ telnet://bbs.pharcyde.org (Wisconsin)
  • From Jazzy_J@JAYSCAFE to Zet on Wed Apr 19 10:23:00 2017
    quadluka wrote to Zet <=-

    Working on getting a C64 to host a BBS.

    Stay Tuned. :)

    __ __
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    / // / _ `/_ /_ // // / / // /
    \___/\_,_//__/__/\_, /__\___/
    /___/___/

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  • From Nightfox@DIGDIST to Android8675 on Mon Apr 24 16:26:52 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Android8675 to Poindexter Fortran on Mon Feb 27 2017 08:51 am

    there is a 2.88mb DS/QD format, but it's rare and died due to the plummetting cost of hard drives at the time.

    I'd say it also had to do with competition from other formats for portable media. I think around the same time is when higher-capacity media became popular, such as Zip drives and disks (100mb, and later 250mb), and SuperDrives (120mb), CD-Rs and CD-RW discs, and there were also things like the Syquest Sparq and IOMega Jaz, which used removable cartridge hard drives that stored 1GB.

    Nightfox

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    ■ Synchronet ■ Digital Distortion: digitaldistortionbbs.com
  • From Denn Gray@OUTWEST to Nightfox on Thu May 4 10:43:52 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Nightfox to Android8675 on Mon Apr 24 2017 04:26 pm

    I'd say it also had to do with competition from other formats for portable media. I think around the same time is when higher-capacity media became popular, such as Zip drives and disks (100mb, and later 250mb), and SuperDrives (120mb), CD-Rs and CD-RW discs, and there were also things like the Syquest Sparq and IOMega Jaz, which used removable cartridge hard drives that stored 1GB.

    I had a zip drive 250 and at the time that format was great.
    I also had an internal Super drive, the super drive pretty much sucked
    after awhile it just quit so I bought another Super drive and it also went out. thats when I bought a zip drive, the zip drive was solid and was always depenable.
    any more I just use USB drives.

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  • From Nightfox@DIGDIST to Denn Gray on Thu May 4 12:24:52 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Denn Gray to Nightfox on Thu May 04 2017 10:43 am

    portable media. I think around the same time is when higher-capacity
    media became popular, such as Zip drives and disks (100mb, and later
    250mb), and SuperDrives (120mb), CD-Rs and CD-RW discs, and there were
    also things like the Syquest Sparq and IOMega Jaz, which used
    removable cartridge hard drives that stored 1GB.

    I had a zip drive 250 and at the time that format was great.
    I also had an internal Super drive, the super drive pretty much sucked after awhile it just quit so I bought another Super drive and it also went out. thats when I bought a zip drive, the zip drive was solid and was always depenable.
    any more I just use USB drives.

    One thing that I think was a downside to all those different media formats is that they never seemed to be as common as 1.44mb floppy disks were. It was useful to have those disks for yourself, but it's also useful to be able to take them to a different computer, but it was hit or miss if you'd be able to use those disks with a different computer since those drives weren't too common. Probably the most common were the zip drives, but the super drive etc. seemed much less common.

    Nightfox

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  • From Mro@BBSESINF to Denn Gray on Thu May 4 18:59:12 2017
    Re: Retro Computing
    By: Denn Gray to Nightfox on Thu May 04 2017 10:43 am


    I had a zip drive 250 and at the time that format was great.
    I also had an internal Super drive, the super drive pretty much sucked


    curse you iomega and your shitty zip drives!!
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