I have the following classic equipment that is looking for a good home:
DEC Rainbow with software and LA50 printer
DEC Professional 380 + RT11 operating system
Tektronix 4107A Graphics Terminal
Boxes of serial cables
Boxes of mag tape
Piles of 8" floppies
Old software (10+ years)
Complete VMS Doc Set (Yes, it is over 10 years old.)
Lots of RT-11 Documentation, including Fortran manuals
(I developed RT-11 Fortran77 for Digital.)
If you can take it away, it is yours. I'm located in Davis, CA,
which is near Sacramento.
-- Robert Walraven
Multiware, Inc. Phone: 530-756-3291
216 F Street, Suite 161 Fax: 530-756-3292
Davis, CA 95616
This constitutes my first 120 seconds of belonging to this group, and I
hope to gather a great amount of amusement and education from being here.
I'm just writing to introduce myself, and to brandish a question in yalls
My name is Bo Zimmerman. I've been collecting computers (and calculators,
and disk drives, and printers, etc, etc) made by Commodore Business Machines
for about three years, with my primary interest being programming and
tinkering (upgrading, networking, etc.) If anyone is amused by such things,
I maintain a web site of my collection at
My question concerns insurance, and is the reason I was referred to this
fine gathering. Does anyone here carry insurance against fire (or theft?!)
for their collections?
Hey! You're supposed to read all that stuff! It's important educational
From: Glenatacme(a)aol.com <Glenatacme(a)aol.com>
To: Discussion re-collecting of classic computers
Date: Monday, August 30, 1999 8:55 PM
Subject: Re: Nothing since (8/29/99 10:03 PM)?
>In a message dated 08/30/1999 9:09:29 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
>> Upon the date 06:14 PM 8/30/99 +0000, Joe said something like:
>> >No, it's just been unusally quite. Maybe we need another good flame war
>> >liven things up!
>> NO! Please.
>Well, it was touch & go for a bit with Tony & Richard ;>)
In a message dated 08/30/1999 9:09:29 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> Upon the date 06:14 PM 8/30/99 +0000, Joe said something like:
> >No, it's just been unusally quite. Maybe we need another good flame war
> >liven things up!
> NO! Please.
Well, it was touch & go for a bit with Tony & Richard ;>)
This is an antique computer related note from the Dead Media mailing list.
>Date: Mon, 30 Aug 1999 19:39:44 -0500
>To: Dead Media List <dead-media(a)fringeware.com>
>From: Richard Kadrey <kadrey(a)sirius.com>
>Subject: <Dead Media Working Note 43.1>
>Dead medium: the Apple Lisa
>From: Bruce Sterling (bruces(a)well.com)
>Source: American Heritage of Invention and Technology magazine, Summer
>1999, Vol 15 Number 1, page 64, article by Tim Hall
>"Poor Little Lisa" by Tim Hall
> "One September day in 1989 about 2,700 Apple Lisa computers were
>unceremoniously buried in a landfill in Logan, Utah. In an industry where
>rapid obsolescence is not only the norm but a goal, the mass burial elicited
>few tears from anyone except insiders. Yet this prosaic event put an end to
>perhaps the greatest and most revolutionary failure in the history of
> "Apple Computer had been founded in Los Altos, California, in 1976. By
>1978 it was enjoying tremendous growth and vying for dominance in the
>nascent home-computer market. The company's newest project, code-named Lisa
>(supposedly after the daughter of Steve Jobs, one of Apple's cofounders),
>was meant to be the successor to the extremely popular Apple II. After Jobs
>visited the Xerox Corporation's Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) twice in
>late 1979, however, those plans changed radically.
> "Many essentials of modern computing, including networking and laser
>printers, were developed at PARC. What caught Jobs's fancy was a prototype
>machine named Alto that had an array of features never before seen on a
>computer. Its heart was the Graphical User Interface (GUI). (...)
> "Jobs thought Alto was the future of computing, and he reportedly ran
>around the PARC research room saying so. Xerox's brass, however, did not
>share his enthusiasm. Since it would have sold for an estimated $400,000
>per unit, Alto was never meant to be mass-marketed. Xerox considered it an
>unmarketable, if fascinating, anomaly.
> "Undeterred, Jobs and his team set about incorporating the spirit of
>Alto's GUI == along with its rodent accessory == into Lisa. After nearly
>200 many-years of work and $50 million, Lisa made her debut on January 19,
>1983. She was a marvel. Directories were represented with line drawings of
>a manila folder, and there was even a little wastebasket for disposing of
>unwanted ones. (...)
> "Apple had high hopes for Lisa, but there were problems. First of all,
>there was the price: nearly $10,000. Also, because of the technological
>sophistication and memory requirements of the GUI and the other features
>Apple stuffed into her, the 48-pound Lisa was not only chubby but awkward
>and slow. Faced with mounting competition from cheaper, zippier machines,
>she quickly fell behind. Even the machine's friendly moniker worked against
>it; corporate managers balked at purchasing a computer with a little girl's
>name when they could have a much more impressive-sounding PDP11/45. Jobs
>had estimated that Apple would sell 50,000 Lisas in the first year, but it
>took nearly two years to reach that goal.
> "After re-engineering and improvements, a Lisa II was introduced. The
>name was later changed to XL, which insiders joked stood for 'Xtra Lisas' in
>the inventory. Jobs, meanwhile, was working on a secret new machine, one
>that was rumored to be smaller, faster and less than half as expensive as
>Lisa. The rumors only hastened Lisa's demise. Unwanted and unappreciated,
>Lisa was abandoned in the spring of 1985 in favor of Jobs's new computer,
>which was called Macintosh.
> "Apple consigned its remaining inventory to Sun Remarketing of Utah,
>which had some success refurbishing and modernizing the Lisas with
>up-to-date technology. But eventually this, too, came to a halt when Apple
>decided to take a tax write-off on its unsold inventory. In September 1989,
>almost a decade after Jobs had first witnessed the Alto in action, the last
>2,700 Lisas were ignominously buried in an unmarked grave, closing the book
>on the first mass-marketed computer to use the standard on which virtually
>all computers would run."
I hope you're not stating that 9-track drives are not available as SCSI
devices, because that's not the case. Those are what kept me from using the
S-100 to CIPHER 9-track interface I got some 20 years ago. SCSI was just
I've never seen an SMD-interfaced 9-track drive either, though that's not
I'd be interested in knowing how this turns out, though.
From: David R. Dick <drd(a)mv.mv.com>
To: Discussion re-collecting of classic computers
Date: Monday, August 30, 1999 4:28 PM
Subject: Re: Arete/ARIX interest?
>> Is the 9-track a SCSI device? Where are you located?
>> Are you looking for a "computer rescue" or to sell these units?
>9 track is *not* a SCSI device. If it is possible for the
>tape drive to be SMD, it probably is, because that's what
>the disk drives are.
>The machines are in Nashua, New Hampshire and this
>is definitely a case of rescue.
>[doing UNIX since 1981]
It's certainly possible to buy adapters for some of the larger qfp packages,
and making one is a REAL pain in the *ss. It's bad enough that these
adapters, by and large, don't have a solder mask, so you have to wear a lupe
and check all your solder joints twice . . .
Making a device which allows you to "play" with an FPGA is a really useful
trick. You can bring out whicever signals you think you need, but you need
to be aware of the timing differences between the internal signal and the
one you're allowed to "see" from outside. I/O blocks generate delay and are
probably best registered. Likewise, if you use an external signal to
stimulate some internal mechanism, it is wise to bring it in through a pair
of synchronous registers in order to avoid metastability due to setup or
hold time violations.
In times pretty much gone by, one ran the risk of having the FPGA pinout
change due to rerouting. Todays tools generally support pin-locking, i.e.
firmly binding the signal to a predefined pin, shuffling other resources
instead of reassigning pins when rerouting a circuit. This can, however,
impact timing. READ THE FINE PRINT!
From: Tony Duell <ard(a)p850ug1.demon.co.uk>
To: Discussion re-collecting of classic computers
Date: Monday, August 30, 1999 5:56 PM
Subject: Re: FPGAs and PDP-11's
>> There are packaging options which might be utilized to help you in
>> out your circuit. One of many complaints I have about FPGA's is that
>> have far too many pins to suit me. Well, since there are lots of pins,
>> can obtain a socketable adapter for the package and then work your way
>> through the design, changing the "bond-out" by routing the signals you
>> to compare to I/O blocks associated with otherwise unused pins. That way
>> you might be able to help yourself figure out strange timing effects
>> internal and external signals, perhaps even allowing you to see the inner
>> workings at least to some extent.
>I've done this many times (in fact, IMHO it's the _only_ way to see what
>an FPGA circuit is really doing), but a word of warning :
>When you add the extra outputs, you recompile the circuit and probably
>change the routing of some signals. Now, these signals will therefore
>suffer different routing delays which means that glitches may move about,
>appear 'from nowhere' or vanish.
>Yes, I know that a well-designed FPGA circuit won't have problems with
>routing delays. But if you're new to FPGA design, especially if you've
>done a lot with TTL, you won't expect your wires to give sigificant
>(longer than switching time of a gate) delays.
>> The handiest package I've run into for these is the PLCC84, for which you
>> can obtain a socket compatible with a wire-wrap adapter. That would
>> you to do what I described above without interfering with the 40-odd
>> you might want to inject into your existing application. This same thing
>> might be achievable with a larger package, but I have some doubts about
>> making the transition from the FPGA package to a wire-wrap socket. You
>> might have to make an adapter PCB or buy one from Samtech or Emulation
>> Technology. Those get expensive.
>You can get SIL strips of wire-wrap socket pins that you can cut to
>length. If you solder/glue these to a suitable piece of matrix board you
>can make up a socket to hold just about any PGA chip, or indeed a
>solder-type PLCC socket.
>Most FPGAs (certainly from Xilinx) are available in PGA packages -- at a
>BGA and PQFP are a little harder to handle, and you may well have to make
>up an adapter board.
Does anyone have a copy of Windows (3.1) for Pen Computing that they
could spare?? A friend of mine got a Telxon tablet computer with no
software, but supposedly it uses PenWin.
[ Rich Cini/WUGNET
[ MCP Windows 95/Windows Networking
[ Collector of "classic" computers
<---------------------------- reply separator
I think this qualifies as "Classic", since the VS3100 is based
on the CVAX chip set from 1987. I have a few questions which
maybe someone on the list can answer.
I picked up a VS3100/30, model VS42A-AA, with 24MB RAM. The
material I have found on the Web says this computer should be
expandable to 32MB of RAM, but I don't see how. It now has
4MB on the motherboard and two daughter boards with 12MB and
8MB. The two daughter boards connect together with only one
connecting to the motherboard. Where would you attach another
board with 8MB more memory?
Although the system came with a hard drive and OpenVMS, I got the
hobbyist OpenVMS CD-ROM and want to install it on another hard
drive that I've added. The drive is an IBM Model 0663-H, which
is a 1GB (slightly less, actually, if you count in base 2) drive.
The specs for the drive say it is "compatible" with the VS3100
when a configuration is made using a SCSI command (which I have
no way of doing, of course--it must be done by a driver). I
connect the drive, the VS3100 console sees it fine, and then I
try to do a low-level format using Test 75. At various times
(varies randomly) into the formatting progress I get an error
"PV_SCS_FMT_ERR#2", which I have no idea of its meaning. What
does this mean?
Is there any termination on the internal SCSI A bus on this
machine, or does the last drive on the cable need to do it?
(The IBM Model 0633-H doesn't have any, and it was on the
Thanks for any help.