Retrocomputing

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Thursday 8 May 2014

PDP-11/44: Hope

So, if all goes well...this weekend I should end up with the replacement H7140 PSU for my 11/44 chassis. In the intervening months since I got the system, I've cleaned up the boards a bit, fully washed and cleaned the backplanes, checked for any bent pins that were touching and straightened the few that were (as my eyesight isn't the greatest let's hope I didn't miss any important ones!). The board contacts were cleaned to an extent...they seem to just be a bit tarnished but I don't see anything that should cause a problem electrically. Most of the leaves have been pulled from the backplane (don't ask), thankfully as the 11/44 only sat outside a short while (less than a day) none got embedded in the backplane!

UNIBUS_boards__-_Imgur.jpg

My RL11 is still the cleanest board with half a DEUNA set as the dirtiest...but I don't see anything that poses an /electrical/ problem. Any dust shouldn't be /highly/ conductive. No IC legs look utterly awful save for an 8085 I already replaced. Before power-up I will look over each board again very thoroughly (assuming the PSU even WORKS).

The last remaining problems are: no disks (don't have the UDA50 yet, don't have an RL11 emulator yet), and needing to find the pinout for the console. I'm betting it's differential like on the DLV11-J/SLUs for the 11/23+ but the docs didn't seem to mention much. Maybe my PDP-11 books will have more board info. I also unfortunately don't have the Floating Point board...but that SHOULDN'T be too hard to find.

Here's pictures of the chassis:

Empty:

BA11-A__PDP-1144__-_Imgur.jpg

Populated with cards:

Cards_in_the_BA11-A__-_Imgur.jpg

Board model numbers:

PDP-1144_board_model_numbers_-_Imgur.jpg

More will follow once I have the new PSU. If anyone has console pinouts, let me know!

Sunday 13 April 2014

PXE Insanity

This is not exactly anything retro but it still has a use! It's also COOL

Windows Server 2008 R2 (failing to) boot in a VM via iSCSI! My DHCP server shoves out an IP, Server 2008 R2 responds and serves up PXELINUX. From there PXELINUX acts as a "jumping-off point" to access All The Things™ I could need to boot to install a system. Unfortunately...this only works with x86/amd64 right now. To do something similar with a VAX or Sun (i'd first need to get new NVRAMs!) I'd need to write an actual executable if I wanted a menu. MOP is very simple...bootp would be a bit more complex as I have no idea how to setup a generic profile.

Next...I think I'll do some video capture tests. I'll probably install the capture box using this very PXE setup!

Monday 27 January 2014

Premier billet

Je suis le premier billet. Modifiez moi.