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.
Jerome Fine replies:
At some time or other, I saw a VT103 with dual TU-58
drives in the bottom. As noted, it took about the
lunch break to boot.
However, a VT103 can actually support a PDP-11/73
with all 4 MBytes of memory if the backplane is
upgraded to 22 bits. The other 2 quad slots can
have items like a TQK70, a DHQ11 and an RQD11-EC
which allows up to 4 * EDSI hard drives. In the
case of ESDI hard drives, I STRONGLY suggest
used a separate power supply. Otherwise, an
RQDX3 with an RD51 can also be used and it is
then possible to place the RD51 under the tube.
At that point, you can play games with those PC
generation of kids and tell that that you don't
even need a computer, just a monitor and keyboard!
If you use a dual PDP-11/73 or PDP-11/23 with a
DLV11-J (and no boot ROMs on the CPU), then
the SIGMA controllers are very handy, either
a dual MFM (or ESDI) version or the quad ESDI
version. Again, with the dual MFM version,
an RD51 (ST412) can be placed under the tube
and use the internal power supply of the VT103.
It must be about 20 years ago that I did this
conversion of the RD51 hard drive under the
tube. I think I still have the backup VT103,
but without any boards or a suitable controller.
With any ESDI drives, limit the use of the internal
power supply of the VT103 to a single drive for less
than 10 seconds which would probably be enough to
boot and copy any needed files to the VM: device.
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