VOGONS


Reply 21160 of 22342, by BitWrangler

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My favorite trick, in anything other than laptops obviously, is to just stick another drive in a windoze box for swap... doesn't matter if it's small and half the speed.. just keeping windoze from swapping on the main drive speeds things up. I mean, it's better if it's a fast drive, but you still get speedup with a slow one... in the early oughts, I was favoring those 20GB Quantum Fireballs which were around, people were dumping them cheap to get 40, 80, 160 etc GB as capacities seemed to explode during that time, but they had fast seek, 7200RPM, decent transfer rate. So I'd give windows a decent size swap file on one, and fill the rest full of media or zipped files for backup.... Though the Fireball name was also getting abused so there were some horrible slow ones around too 5400RPM and slower than the regular "Prodrive" line.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 21161 of 22342, by davidrg

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Kahenraz wrote on 2022-03-07, 10:27:
davidrg wrote on 2022-03-07, 02:24:

At the moment NetWare is exactly what I'm using - the server (virtualised) is NetWare 4.11 with windows 95 loading everything over a 10Mbps network link - even its swap file is on the server. I assume the only reason its preforming well right now is the client has 64MB of RAM and the server is pretty much idle. I bet a whole lab full of machines with 16-32MB of RAM would perform terribly as they're all frantically swapping to some poor network server.

In an hour or two I'll probably make a new thread covering what I've done so far (and what I'm going to attempt next) in a single post in case there might be anyone else out there interested in this unusual corner of vintage networking.

I wonder how well it would perform with a swap file on a small c:\ partition.

Windows will always swap regardless of how much memory there is in a system, as this is best practice to keep as much fast memory available as possible. You may find there to be more of an improvement by adding a tiny swap partition than more RAM.

IIRC Microsoft did recommend having a local disk to store the swap file if possible. I guess with a local swap file performance would probably improve a fair bit - the NIC is only 10Mbps or around 1MB/s so its kind of amazing windows runs as fast as it does. Wikipedia says IDE was originally only 8.3MB/s half-duplex so I guess with a 10/100 card you could probably beat that (assuming the server has fast disks).

Reply 21162 of 22342, by Shreddoc

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It's fascinating to see Win95 run without a local hard drive in that manner.

Now we just need to do it over the internet.

"Windows 95 machine in New Zealand, boots fr0m hard disk in USA". That's a headline. (Take the world's attention off this pesky political stuff that's for sure. 😁 )

Reply 21163 of 22342, by davidrg

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Shreddoc wrote on 2022-03-07, 20:48:

It's fascinating to see Win95 run without a local hard drive in that manner.

Now we just need to do it over the internet.

"Windows 95 machine in New Zealand, boots fr0m hard disk in USA". That's a headline. (Take the world's attention off this pesky political stuff that's for sure. 😁 )

That would be something to see!

If you want to see what it looks like booting from the LAN I got out my IP-KVM and made a quick recording:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mOgDrJwWP4

Video performance isn't great - I'd really need some sort of VGA to HDMI converter and some sort of HDMI capture device if I was going to make a habit of this.

Reply 21164 of 22342, by creepingnet

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Got my 387SX in the mail today, well...I guess it's official now, Links for DOS runs on the minimum system requirements of a 386SX with a 387SX. So my guess was right the engine that handles security on Links does use the 387 for TLS/SSL/etc. Oldest TLS 1.3 compatible PC I've ever heard of.

~The Creeping Network~
My Youtube Channel - https://www.youtube.com/creepingnet
Creepingnet's World - https://creepingnet.neocities.org/

Reply 21165 of 22342, by BitWrangler

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I was just reading the CD case of "Links: The challenge of golf" for DOS and wondering what the heck you were talking about because it says right there it runs on a 286..... then I realised you were talking about the text mode web browser 🤣

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 21166 of 22342, by Kahenraz

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davidrg wrote on 2022-03-07, 19:47:

IIRC Microsoft did recommend having a local disk to store the swap file if possible. I guess with a local swap file performance would probably improve a fair bit - the NIC is only 10Mbps or around 1MB/s so its kind of amazing windows runs as fast as it does. Wikipedia says IDE was originally only 8.3MB/s half-duplex so I guess with a 10/100 card you could probably beat that (assuming the server has fast disks).

OS responsiveness is all about latency not just throughput. And there is a whole lot of latency added by the network. A spinning disk swap file as cache would be much faster for any kind of moderate swap use.

Reply 21167 of 22342, by creepingnet

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BitWrangler wrote on 2022-03-08, 02:59:

I was just reading the CD case of "Links: The challenge of golf" for DOS and wondering what the heck you were talking about because it says right there it runs on a 286..... then I realised you were talking about the text mode web browser 🤣

Well....text and graphical....people get really confused because there's a Lynx text mode browser, and then there's a Links (links.twibright.com) browser, the latter is what I use. I tend to rely on Links on my old machines to download stuff to them that way I don't have to always be pushing stuff from a modern machine via filezilla. Unfortunatley I don't think it works on anything older than a 386SX though, tried it on the Tandy and on the GEM and did not get anywhere IIRC. Might try again on the GEM though.

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Reply 21168 of 22342, by BitWrangler

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I wasn't realising Links v2 was much enhanced from the Links I used years ago http://www.jikos.cz/~mikulas/links/screenshots/jpg.html which is very similar to Lynx.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 21169 of 22342, by dormcat

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Tried installing Win10 on three cleaned vintage systems: two Wolfdale Pentiums and an i5-4460. The i5 and one E5500 went smoothly, but the E5700 refused to boot from Win10 USB flash drive. Strangely, the MemTest86 flash drive worked perfectly on that E5700, meaning either the port or the controller were fine. Still can't figure out the cause; maybe I'll try using a DVD instead.

UPDATE: Silly me, BIOS took that flash drive not as "removable device" but as a secondary HDD. Who wrote that BIOS options......

Reply 21170 of 22342, by BitWrangler

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IIRC USB in legacy mode may take USB stick as HDD.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 21171 of 22342, by dormcat

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BitWrangler wrote on 2022-03-08, 16:21:

IIRC USB in legacy mode may take USB stick as HDD.

But MemTest86 would run from flash, probably because MemTest86 would pretend the flash drive as a floppy (even have the exact 1,457,664 bytes of total capacity).

The BIOS only allows three categories of boot devices: HDD, optical, and removable (e.g. an USB floppy drive), with the flash drive and the actual HDD/SSD under the same "HDD" category. What a strange design. 🙄

Reply 21172 of 22342, by BitWrangler

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Yah, there was some weirdness out there, I had PIII and Athlon systems boot off USB perfectly, then there seemed like there was some stupidity in early core and A64 era where support went retrograde and was a pig to work with... then it all smoothed out again.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 21173 of 22342, by bjwil1991

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Had to reinstall the Compaq VDU CGA card since my Portable 286 is having issues with any EGA card I install, even though the BIOS supports it.

I might get the up-t0-date BIOS and see if that fixes it, but for now, the CGA card will do. In other news, I trimmed the CRMC-LU005S drive so I can eject the drive and insert a CD for the Portable 286 and it works (except one CD doesn't work) and I'll test it again later on once I get a new 6V lithium.

Discord: https://discord.gg/U5dJw7x
Systems from the Compaq Portable 1 to FX-8350
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Reply 21174 of 22342, by TxSnipper

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Kahenraz wrote on 2022-03-07, 02:14:

That computer looks amazing! Job well done rescuing and restoring such a relic. Can you explain more about the hardware and what kind of software was used on it?
The demo in your photos is also very impressive and looks wonderful on the green phosphor. Are there any videos of it? Does it animate or just draw things?

Thank you, the system has a single board solution 1x z80A (4Mhz) using 64K Ram,(green area below) the graphic power uses another 1x z80A CPU with 32K (red area)ram and HD46505 graphic processor( Yellow area) and runs a 4K ROM on it.
the board looks like this., and I admit I have not found much on it aside from a single CPM 2/.2 floppy the software "demo" was a SBASIC demo.bas file to show off the high res graphics it could do. The Mainboard looks like this. and as you can see it has 2 sets of connectors for floppy drives 5.25" or 8" drives directly from the mainboard. the one I got has the 2x5.25" 80 tracks DSDD (also known as QDDS Drives) 720K

8LZImUN.jpeg

Main PC: 8700K, 16GB, RTX 2060, 2x500GB SSD, Asus 370 Gaming, 2x37"LG Monitor
Work PC: Quad 9400, 8GB, 240GB SSD, 1TB HDD, GT720
Retro PC: TRS-80 Model 4, 2x 360KB, 1x 720KB, 1x Gotek, FreHD 4x4MB HDD, RS232C-Wifi Modem

Reply 21175 of 22342, by Zeerex

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Improved memory speed of my SIS 5598 M5SIB via my first experience with WPCredit and using a data sheet for that chipset. Was able to improve float FPU from around 100 stock to 136mb/s. Which is of course pretty slow compared to a highly tuned MVP3. Largely followed the recommendations on k6plus.com for the SIS530 as there isn’t as much love for 5598 out there. It may not be the fastest K6 experience but I’m really digging it.

Reply 21176 of 22342, by BitWrangler

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Nice, if you figure out how to save out the PCR file or whatever, I'd be interested. I have an M571 that's gonna get one of those K6-2+ modded to 3+ annnnd it could use the help. (Not my fastest super 7 btw)

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 21177 of 22342, by TrashPanda

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BitWrangler wrote on 2022-03-10, 05:02:

Nice, if you figure out how to save out the PCR file or whatever, I'd be interested. I have an M571 that's gonna get one of those K6-2+ modded to 3+ annnnd it could use the help. (Not my fastest super 7 btw)

I got a VA 503+ sitting in the box waiting for a modded K6-2+, still haven't got a nice case for it yet.

Im thinking of something like this

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Tower
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Fair use/fair dealing exception

Only issue I have is .. well finding a place for something this dang big 😁

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁

Reply 21179 of 22342, by TrashPanda

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Kahenraz wrote on 2022-03-10, 09:03:

That case is glorious. I love it.

Its gloriously huge and Im still debating if its worth having it as part of my permanent collection, I really dont have any room for a Super Tower but ...I wants it, ITS MY PRECIOUS !

Oh noes, the cap let the shmooo out 😁