Spent some time the past couple days testing a recently re-found vintage Toshiba laptop (445), charging the battery and the nearly identical battery in another Toshiba. Models involved are the 430CDT and 445CDX. The 430CDT has a P120 and 16MB RAM natively, with another 16MB on a daughterboard (native RAM and expansion header visible in the backdoor shot of the 430CDT). The 445CDX has a P150MMX and 80MB RAM, which I believe is standard and non-upgradeable. The 445CDX was like the "slim and portable" of its day and had an external AC adapter instead of the internal one found in its immediate predecessor, the 430. The 5 at the end of the model number just indicates the unit came bundled with software and is otherwise the same as the 440. T means TFT. If it was a CDS, it would be dual scan. I believe the X also means some sort of active matrix but it is different than the standard TFT and they did not age well, with a bit of contrast variegation in the screen. It looks like some effect you would apply to a video to give the impression of a tired old LCD screen. The screen on the 430CDT is consistent and clear, with one solitary dead pixel. But it was also apparently last used in 2003, based on a look at the files. I got it in a lot of old office hardware from a local business last year.
I found the 445 the other day but not the external floppy or charger. So I had a charged battery from the 430CDT and popped it in the 445CDX and booted it up for a look at the filesystem. It is mostly as it was from the factory, as far as setup is concerned. While some software has been removed, all the original config files, sys files and drivers are there. It was purchased in 1998 and used regularly as recently as 2014 and has been in my family since new. I was actually the last person to do any sysadmin tasks with the machine but that was several years ago.
Both are running the original build of Windows 98. I plan to upgrade the 445 to 98SE and make the 430 a 6.11/95/3.1 machine. I tried running some stuff like Civ 3, Dragon Siege II and RC Tycoon and and it was not pleasant without the MMX extensions, 🤣. But a P150MMX with 80MB RAM and a 4MB C&T 65554 is a different matter and deserves 98SE. It won't blow your socks off but it is an honest representation of what a lot of people were gaming on in the mid-late '90s. It is a good machine for running early Windows games. The430 has the same C&T chip but with only 2MB. Both have genuine Yamaha OPL-3 sound (as in it is actually a Yamaha card) that also has 16 bit FM synth. The 445 actually has Cakewalk installed so that gives some idea of what it was capable of.
The 445 will get a CF card. I will be dumping the drives and uploading drivers and other system files. The 2GB drive in the 445 will replace the 1.2GB drive in the 430.
Ironically, in a lot of vintage junk I got recently, there was this IDE adapter to use a laptop drive in a desktop. It will come in handy because my vintage Windows 7 Dell Optiplex has an IDE header. But since I have an IDE to SATA adapter, I will probably try it in a modern PC too, just for grins.
I really just can't believe I have 2 working batteries for my vintage Toshibas. Most people report them having failed at this point. But I suspect most were treated badly and not charged for 20 years which is not the case with my batteries. They are both the same model, with slightly different suffixes and inventory control numbers but list the same capacity and are interchangeable (see pics). They both still have a useful life of well over an hour, which is awesome since they could barely do 2 hours when new. This is also BIOS adjustable and this is all assuming the unrestricted power plan. With some tweaking, it can be stretched but you won't be playing Quake like that. We are talking hard, dumb limits on performance that have no intelligent control like modern CPU power management.
Interestingly, when I opened the CD drive on the 445, I found a burned CD from 1995, CDMania 4, a pirated copy of the latest major game releases in early 1995, cracked of course. Including Hexen, Descent, Demolition Derby, Fatal Racing, SC2000, Witchaven, Tekwar, Magic Carpet, MK3, TTD, EF2000 and more. Also includes the final release of Win 3.11 for Workgroups, DOS 6.11 and a late Beta of Win95 that was nearly identical to the launch version. I used that Win95 beta through the end of the '90s. The CD-R seems to use azo dye which makes me think "archival quality optical media" is a modern scam. That, and the fact it has no rot while a ton of my (silver) CD-Rs from the early '00s do. I seem to recall this bootleg disc could be initiated from a bootdisk loading mscdex and used to install the OS similarly to the native media. The Win 95 installation was pretty much indistinguishable from the real thing.
BTW, since I only need 16MB for the 430 for what I want to do with it, the 16MB expansion board is available for purchase at a fair price to any fellow collector who is interested. i could probably also be persuaded to part with the 1.2GB HDD. Just don't ask me to sell the batteries, 🤣.