I just added a patch to https://github.com/pkoning2/decstuff, in patches/shut.cmd, which cures a problem in RSTS V10.1 that seems to come and go with no clear pattern. The failure is a crash, sometimes a halt, during system shutdown. The cause was a write to the wrong location when removing the DCL runtime system, because of a register not being set before that action.
The patch can be installed with ONLPAT; it takes effect immediately (because it patches a non-resident overlay).
I've recently picked up a new Applesauce floppy disk controller and have been playing with attaching various different drive types and imaging different Apple II, Atari, TI and other floppy disks with it. So far I've mostly imaged unprotected disks and run them in various emulators just fine. I've since added a sync sensor to one of my older Disk II drives and started to make some flux images of protected disks. These too seem to run fine in the emulators I've tried. The documentation on the device is limited at the moment, particularly the software, and while it is slowly being updated I was wondering if anyone else here had any experience with the setup. Any hints, suggestions, best practices, "do this to get the best copy", etc, to pass along would be appreciated. For example I read you can try to recover borderline disks by having it do multiple passes of the bad sectors. I see how this is done on the Fast Image option and has helped a couple of times but don't see any way to do
something similar via the Flux Image option. Does it not work/matter with those? Also I see sometimes it reports a file as bad if I do one image type but if I do the other it comes back as okay. So I tend to play with both when I can. There is a lot of options and functions in the Flux Image option that I just really don't know how it works or what to do with it so far that any info would be great. I know it can image non-Apple II disks as well and I've done a few. It works great on Apple II protected disks but wonder how to deal with protected disks from other systems? Or is that more an issue of other emulators and such not having something like the .woz format being used with the Apple II? I bought this for my Apple II collection and it was a nice surprise to learn it could work with other systems too, just looking for more info about them as well. So far I really love the device and it has been worth the long wait for new units to come back into production again. Especially as it
is a new design that allows for attaching PC floppy drives now as well. I've noticed the doc on the site being updated, just hope that they can find time to update more, particularly in regards to the client software. Best, David Williams www.trailingedge.com (http://www.trailingedge.com)
Another thing Prolok did was produce a small 3 disk set of sample disks
with the Prolok protection. Somewhere around here I still have a set of
As I recall, a program was included on each disk to copy the program to
be copy protected to the special disk.
Earlier, I wrote:
> 30-pound struts are not strong enough. They improved things a bit,
> but it still takes a lot of effort to raise the box. I have ordered a
> pair of 50-pound struts and will post an update when they arrive (next
The pair of 50-pound struts arrived today, and in my opinion they are
just barely adequate. If I was trying for perfection, I would use the
60-pound ones, but they currently have a 6 to 7 week lead time. I can
easily live with these.
In summary, what I have learned about replacement gas struts for the
DEC PDP-11/44 in a 40" high cabinet:
1. The specifications are: 15.24" extended, 9.77" compressed, stroke
length 5.47", threaded ball studs, extension force 50 or 60 (preferred)
2. A good replacement is the McMaster-Carr 4138T55 gas strut in either
the 50 or 60 pound force version. The price as of January 2022 is
$20.29 each. <https://www.mcmaster.com/catalog/127/1377>
3. The threaded ball ends on the 4138T55 are 5/16"-18 threads, while the
original DEC ones are 5/16"-24. They are easy to swap without
unscrewing them from the cabinet, and this is the method that DEC
recommends and describes on pages 5-5 to 5-7 of the PDP-11/44 System
User's Guide, EK-11044-UG. You simply unsnap a retaining clip (no tool
needed), pop the strut off the ball end (a screwdriver might help),
and reverse the process with the new strut. A piece of 4"x4" lumber
does a good job of holding the box up while doing this (stick it
under the rear of the cabinet when it is in the raised position).
EK-11044-UG is available at:
(In my earlier posting I gave the wrong DEC P/N for the manual.)
4. The 4138T55 struts that McMaster-Carr sells are manufactured by Suspa
Parts <https://www.suspaparts.com/>. The 30-pounds struts are their
part number C16-24186, and the 50-pound struts are C16-24188. I
suspect that the P/N for the 60-pound struts would be C16-24189, but
cannot confirm that. Their price is $32.00 each, so it is less
expensive to buy them from McMaster.
5. Suspa's design guide recommends mounting the struts with the rod end
down, the opposite of how DEC mounted them. I have verified that they
can easily be mounted with the rod down as long as you connect the
upper (body) end first. That is the way I have them now in my system.
I hope that this helps someone who might need to replace the gas struts
on their PDP-11/44 system or something similar. It has been an
interesting learning experience.
> From: Grant Taylor
> From that last picture, it looks like one of the plugs is five pronged,
> and looks very similar to the 120/208V 30A 3? plug in one of the
> pictures about the current 780 auction.
Not too surprising; the /780 and /785 are basically the same machine. (In
fact, one could convert a /780 to a /785 by pulling out the /780 CPU cards
and replacing them with a set of /785 cards; basically the same cards, with
the 74S chips replaced with 74AS.)
> From: Chris Zach
>> Anyone know what an M857 is? I guess it might be a DF11 async answer
> No, it's a single width full height M series board from the early
Argh, digit swappping on my part.
The _M587_ is in the DN87 FMPS:
(pg. 98); it's a dual-width card, an "Async answer modem" (the DF11-BB).
The BC01-R cable is in there (pg. 89), but I don't see the M857. (Web
searches don't turn it up either.)