Informer 213 terminal - 3274 / 3178 compatible ?

Dave Wade dave.g4ugm at
Mon Jun 13 15:33:26 CDT 2016

> -----Original Message-----
> From: cctalk [mailto:cctalk-bounces at] On Behalf Of Ethan Dicks
> Sent: 13 June 2016 21:06
> To: General Discussion: On-Topic and Off-Topic Posts <cctalk at>
> Subject: Re: Informer 213 terminal - 3274 / 3178 compatible ?
> On Mon, Jun 13, 2016 at 3:50 PM, Dave G4UGM <dave.g4ugm at>
> wrote:
> >> does have a Rockwell modem board in it.
> >>
> >> I did find an old Computerworld ad from 1989 which matched. Informer
> >> 213 - emulating a 3274 control unit with an attached 3178 mod 2 terminal.
> >> Someone with IBM knowledge might share what that means and how the
> >> terminal can be used.
> >>
> >
> > Reading the add it looks like you need a dial-up SDLC (that’s synchronous
> data) link into a mainframe with a telecoms controller running VTAM, l which I
> guess is as rare as hens teeth these days.
> > When you get to the set up menu's can you check if  it can run bi-sync as that
> might be hackable, providing a suitable synchronous modem can be found.
> Some time around 1992, give or take, there were piles of Informer 207s for
> sale cheap at the Dayton Hamfest.  We were doing Bisync and SNA products at
> the time, so we bought a couple.  We were able to fiddle our environment
> enough to get one of them to connect - our flagship product was an SNA PU
> type 2, much like a 3274 terminal controller, but with interactive sessions via
> VT100 + software 3270 emulation instead of a real IBM 3270.  My memory is
> that you could dial up your
> 37x5 (via sync modem, as Dave mentioned) from one Informer 207, then attach
> several "child" Informer 207s to the first, as if you had a real 3274 + multiple
> 3270s.  I have to think the later Informer terminals had the same functionality
> (unless it was later determined that it was "better" (and/or cheaper) to do one-
> modem-one-user instead of supporting a remote office and multiple sessions
> off of one connection.
> Essentially, what we had to do with out Informer 207 was to provision our
> environment pretty much the same as adding a new 3274 and get the settings
> to match on both sides of the phone line.  I think it took a few hours of fiddling
> to get both sides happy.
> The 207 was SNA-only.  It did not support HASP or 3780, the predominant bisync
> protocols (we supported those on other products, and they are _far_ simpler
> than anything SNA).
> Sorry I don't have any data on the 213.  It sounds like a device we would have
> liked to have had 20+ years ago.
> -ethan

Looking at the documents on the web it looks like the AE is a straight forward VT100 terminal, the PT was the 3270 version.
If it is an AE it should work with any Unix/Linux/PDP/VAX etc. etc. out of the box.


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