>Subject: TU-58s (was Re: Some progress with my PDP-11/73 system)
> From: "Ethan Dicks" <ethan.dicks at gmail.com>
> Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2007 21:54:24 -0500
> To: "General Discussion: On-Topic and Off-Topic Posts" <cctalk at classiccmp.org>
>On 4/11/07, Jerome H. Fine <jhfinedp3k at compsys.to> wrote:
>> But I once had a project that
>> used a real DEC TU-58. Not the fastest "random"
>> access device!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
>They work better as "sequential" access devices - being long and thin
>and travelling in one dimension, go figure. We used to optimize file
>order on our console TU58s to speed up the boot times on our 11/725s
>and 11/730s. Since the file order doesn't change, one just builds a
>TU58 with EXCHANGE with each file following the other. The console's
>8-bit-micro must cache the directory block, since the tape didn't whip
>back to the start between each file.
>Using unaltered console tapes from DEC resulted in, IIRC, about 15
>minutes from turning the key to booting the hard disk. Replacing that
>tape with one of our own devising shortened that pre-boot time to well
>under 3 minutes.
>I'd hate to rely on a TU-58 and no other block-addressable media on a
>PDP-11, though. I survived a PDP-8 with a TD8E and TU56, but it was
>somewhat tedious (cool to watch, though). TU-58s weren't as cool,
So happens one of my "small" pdp-11s uses a Tu58. the system is a BA-11V
with an 11/23 256k of ram, DLV11J and MRV11 rom(boot). Takes 10 minutes
to boot, setup VM: then copy key files to and reboot. After that it's
pretty decent even if I have to access a file on tape.
Everytime I runs it with a bunch of kids of the current PC generations
they go gaga and comment on how slow then I explain the amount of ram and
storage then they are amazed it can be a functional machine with so little.
They can't imagine a useful machine with 32kW of ram and 256kb of storage.
On the flip side I've used that same Tu58 to bring up iron that had no
removable storage. It's slow but very dependable.
heres a link to some lead solder
On 10/2/07, Zane H. Healy <healyzh at aracnet.com> wrote:
> At 11:37 PM +0100 10/1/07, Tony Duell wrote:
> >For the first part, I'd offer to do it for you, but it would be illegal
> >to do so. Owing to our totally daft laws, (a) I'd have to use lead-free
> >solder, which I don't have, don't trust, and am not set up to use and
> How hard is it to work with lead-free solder, and is it becoming a
> problem to get traditional solder in the US? I've been meaning to
> pick up a few rolls. As I'm still using a roll purchased in the 80's
> from Rat Shack for building a couple things for my VIC-20, I haven't
> been going through it that fast. Though I seem to be using it more
> often now than.
> >it has been said that if an enthusiast (specifically a model engineer,
> >but it would apply here too) does jobs for others, then his workshop
> >becomes a workplace and is covered by all the daft health-and-safety
> >rules that I have no desire to get involved with, and which quite
> >honestly, would stop me from getting on with things.
> Does it count as a job if you don't take payment?
> | Zane H. Healy | UNIX Systems Administrator |
> | healyzh at aracnet.com (primary) | OpenVMS Enthusiast |
> | MONK::HEALYZH (DECnet) | Classic Computer Collector |
> | Empire of the Petal Throne and Traveller Role Playing, |
> | PDP-10 Emulation and Zane's Computer Museum. |
> | http://www.aracnet.com/~healyzh/ |
Just a quick introduction - besides being the guy who can't make his IBM
6904-20 Lighted Programmable Function Keyboard work on a serial port and
writing a TCP/IP stack from scratch that runs on a PCjr, I am also a
moderator at The Vintage Computer Forums web forum (
http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/ ) . Some of you are regulars
there too, but it is more PC and smaller computer oriented than most of
you on this list are.
We have many of the same problems with well known auction sites that
many subscribers here have. We also have enough traffic in our 'for
sale' section of the forum to finally warrant a more structured auction
type service. So we are happy to announce "The Vintage Computer and
Gaming Marketplace" at http://marketplace.vintage-computer.com/ .
The idea is give vintage computer collectors an alternative to your
favorite big site that is more targeted to our specific interests. It
is simple to use, it supports auctions and normal fixed price sales, and
there is none of this sniping bogusness that happens on eBay. Best of
all, it's completely free to use - no listing fees.
Thanks for reading,
PCjr nutcase and soon to be TRS-80 Model 4 nutcase
Have a working Intel Above Board Plus 8 with 2MB RAM and would like to
populate it to the full 8MB. It will take 120ns or faster 1mbit chips
-- but where can one find that kind of thing nowadays? Are those still
commercially available or am I going to have to scavenge them from
Manual lists acceptable part numbers like:
...etc but google searches haven't been very fruitful (that is, the
pages returned when I search for IC part numbers don't return vendors
with plain pricing/availability info).
I just want a few tubes of these to populate the board, I'm not looking
for a box of 'em :-) Any pointers?
Jim Leonard (trixter at oldskool.org) http://www.oldskool.org/
Help our electronic games project: http://www.mobygames.com/
Or check out some trippy MindCandy at http://www.mindcandydvd.com/
A child borne of the home computer wars: http://trixter.wordpress.com/
I've more of these than anyone will need and they're all brand new.
3 packs of Bernoulli 5.25 44meg disks
KAO 5.25 88meg syquest disks. The label inside says they are formatted for
Macs but includes software for wintel machines also.
$1 each plus whatever for shipping and they're yours. Just say how many you
I am not willing to give up my privacy for the false promise of 'security'
Just a reminder that next weekend is my 4th annual Vintage Computer
Festival/Midwest, held at Purdue University's Stewart Center. The
event has speakers from 11am until 1pm each day, and the exhibits are
open from 1pm until 5pm. The ticket price is $5 per day, or free if
you're 17 or under, or have a valid Purdue student ID.
The event is a celebration of the history of computing, and the machine
and people that got us to where we are today. There will be lots of
neat technology, and this year we have a door prize of an IBM PCjr from
1983! The PCjr was IBM's first attempt at an inexpensive home
I've got several exhibitors signed up, but still have room for more; if
you want to show up to show off your collection, or have a few things
to sell off at the consignment sale, sign up to be an exhibitor at
http://vintage.org/2008/midwest/, or send me an email at this address.
Exhibitors get one free t-shirt and free admission, which is included
in the $10 per table fee.
Purdue University Research Computing --- http://www.rcac.purdue.edu/
The Computer Refuge --- http://computer-refuge.org
I tripped across this email link on a Google search.
I was the author of the original PDP-8 * "Introduction to Programming", published in either late 1968 or early 1969. I hired onto Digital straight out of college as a tech writer joining a department of four writers for the whole company.
Almost 40 years later I am still with HP.
Solution Alliances Engineering
(978) 777-6157 - Phone
(978) 742-1078 - Fax
I am the 'proud' owner of a VAX 4000/200.
I have not tried to do much with it yet, first I'll indicate it's
config, then my questions
(as I'm 'new' to VAX (I admin'd one for a bit 14 years ago... but I
deferred to several
folk on campus as I was new to admin'ing VMS and I didn't stay in the
role long enough
to really pick much up)).
M9715-AA VAX 4000 internal card (terminates DSSI and SCSI busses)
M7626-AA KA660 CPU
M7622-AT 16M Memory
M7622-BF 8M Memory
M3108-PA DSV11-S 2 Line Sync Comm
SI-SC 1000 System Industries SCSI card
M3118-YA CXA16-M 16 Async Line
M3118-YA CXA16-M 16 Async Line
M3119-YA CXA08-M 8 Async Line
M3118-YA CXA16-M 16 Async Line
M7559-00 TQK70 Tape controller
are the cards present (from slot 0? (rightmost slot))
And it has 3 DSSI drives, 2 5.25" RF31 (381M) and 1 3.5" RF36 (in one of
the 'rail' sets
that will support 2 3.5" drives) (1.6G).
the 2 RF31s are ID 0 and 1
the RF36 is ID 2
It also has a TK70.
Now onto the questions:
1. How is 24M of RAM ? Should I be on the lookout for more ?
2. What releases of VMS, Vax Ultrix, etc should I limit myself to based
on 24M and KA660 ?
3. Was there a DSSI version of TK70 ?
4. 4000/200 does not have SCSI, correct ? (other than someone added an
5. any idea if a SCSI CD can be booted via the SI SC-1000 ? (boot cmds
would be ?)
6. This is supposed to have some version of VMS on it... I have no PW...
pointers to 'break in'
procedure and password reset ? What is the default sysadmin
account as well ?
7. There is what looks like a 50 pin scsi terminator (small size like
Sun 411 case) that I've
identified as DSSI terminator., What is the 50 pin centronics style
connector above that ?
8. What is a DSV11-S good for ?
9. Not that I plan to, but how do you make use of the async cards (they
have 50 pin centronics
10. Anyone got any more of the 2 3.5" drive mounting assemblies ?
11. Anyone got any RF36 or higher density DSSI drives available ?
12. Can the DSSI drive 'bus' be converted to SCSI ?
13. What is the largest drive/partitions supported on 4000/200 (DSSI or
14. Have I asked enough questions ? (What have I forgotten to ask :-) ? )
How are the 4000/200 machines ? (Other VAXen I have is VAXStation 2000 and
VAXStation 3100, neither of which is running (driveless))... I find the
design pretty cool... and for a large box, has nice design (visually)...
(I know it is no
SGI... and that it is DEC beige.... but I like the design (doors, badge,
Any drop in cpu/memory upgrades that are worthwhile (in the free to
of course :-) ).
Thanks in advance for any cool info/pointers/etc...
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2008 17:49:41 -0700
From: dwight elvey
> Still a strange problem.
This is past the point where I'd have my logic probe out (if you
don't have one, they're easy enough to make)--and this is a perfect
application for one, as the signals aren't super-fast.
Bring your test up, send a character to get the software into the
state where it quits receiving.
Let's check the static signals first.
Is pin 22 (DSR/) low? If not, check your "null modem" cable and any
level conversion logic upstream from that pin. While you're at it,
check that pin 23 (RTS/) is low so that you can transmit when the
Now for the dynamic tests. A logic probe with a "pulse stretcher" is
needed here. Fortunately, most have this feature.
Next, put a probe on pin 3 (RxD) and make sure that it's pulsing with
each character sent.
And then check pin 14 (RxRDY). Does it pulse high with each received
character? If it goes high with the first and stays high, then you're
not retrieving characters after the first.
But if it pulses high only once and then stays low, check your chode.
Somehow, you're disabling the receiver, perhaps as part of the "TOUT"
code. (This is bit 2 of the command word and must be set for the
receive side to operate). The third possibility, that RxRDY pulses
with each received character, says that you're actually picking up
the data and it's not getting echoed back (hint: check the status of
your CTS line).
Let us know what you find.