First post, by istvan

User metadata
Rank Newbie

I've decided to post on this forum since I haven't been able to find any relevant info about this anywhere (and I came across this place a lot of times while searching for drivers ;P).

It's a complete PC inside of a keyboard which slightly looks like a less bulky AMIGA. The only real label it has is "KNS Keyboard Network Station 80486" (and "M8B" in some places). The only info I was able to find was some blurry images of the box. I did find some information about a "386SX-25-IDE KNS" version in a 1992 edition of InfoWorld, with a footnote saying "The company expects to add a 486 chip to the keyboard in the future.[1]". This one seems to have a different power plug, no onboard network (why is it still called a KNS then?) and a 386 instead of a 486. I also found Jonas-fr's post on here[2] which I thought was the same as mine, but his motherboard is completely different, so I'm not sure.

Images: https://imgur.com/a/8ExHKV6 (I decided not to compress the images, so it's like 4MB per image but I hope the labels/etc are readable)

I picked it up for $20 back in July, and I've been messing around with it on and off. Here's what I know so far:

  • It didn't come with a power brick or driver floppy, so that was fun
  • The power supply takes 12V and -12V as inputs (and 2 Ground), turning them into 12V, 5V, -12V and -5V.
  • The actual input power connector is 4 pin, all the images I saw used 3 Pin, the pin-out is random.
  • The motherboard has a non-standard AT Power connector, but the wire colors are standard.
  • It doesn't actually use the -12V/-5V, so I've made a 3D printed adapter that supplies 12V to the built in power supply
  • It had a broken Quantum GoDrive which I managed to get running, but it just loads dos and then kinda stops doing anything.
  • The emulator called "86Box" support for most components and even a similar BIOS, so I can (kind of) emulate it.
  • I dumped the real BIOS but the emulator crashed. If anyone needs this I can upload it.

The Specs:
KNS Keyboard Network Station 80486
manufacturer: Advance Interlink Corporation

CPU: Cyrix FastCache Cx486DX2-v66.6 MHz
Memory: 4MB (3072KB extended)
Chipset: UMC UM8498F
BIOS: AMI WinBIOS 07/25/94
VGA: CirrusLogic GD5429 1M (2M?)
Network: Macronix MX98905AFC (NE2000)

Done so far:

  • Reverse Engineer the power supply
  • Fix the drive (OS still seems broken, I can't really get the data off of it since I don't have anything to read 2.5 IDE drives with)
  • Replace the drive and install DOS 6.22 for testing - I had to wait 2 months but I finally got my 2.5 44 pin IDE to SD card adapter (which is just an SD to CF card adapter that's on the same panel as the CF to IDE adapter. Talk about complicated).
  • The battery has leaked all over the top PCB, so I replaced it and (crudely/temporarily) soldered in two wires that I connected to a new one.

Stuff I need help with:

  • The built in network doesn't work. It shows up just fine in HWiNFO (DOS) and the packed driver can see the MAC address, but I think it defaults to the BNC connector not the RJ45 one. I can't figure out how to switch it. Most NE2000 config utilities I found error out or don't find it in the first place. searching "macronix-mx98905b" brings up the datasheet, which has some code snippets about writing to the EEPROM but I'd rather not guesstimate and mess up the whole thing. For now I slapped in a 3Com 3C509B EtherLink III which nicely takes up the only expansion slot the thing has
  • I can't tell how much memory the VGA card is supposed to have. It says "VGA CARD-2MEGA" on the silkscreen but it shows up as 1M once the system loads.
  • I'm not sure how to expand the memory, since I don't have any info on what the board supports. It currently has 4 sticks of unknown 30 pin SIMM memory totaling 4 MB. One image I linked is of the module. I think I read somewhere it went up to 32MB, which would be plenty if it was true. The current modules use Panasonic MN41C1000ASJ-07 chips - I looked up the datasheet for these a while ago but I can't find the relevant section at the moment.
  • I don't have *any* official drivers and or manuals for it.

So that's about it. If anyone can offer advice, I'd appreciate it.

[1] https://books.google.hu/books?id=elEEAAAAMBAJ … Network+Station
[2] Restoring a 486 Computer-in-a-Keyboard
[3] https://www.ebay.com/itm/SD-Micro-sd-Memory-C … ew/133466676053

Reply 1 of 2, by cyclone3d

User metadata
Rank l33t++

There was one of these that was sold on eBay a while ago. This isn't the same one is it? Pretty sure that one went for more and somebody else here bought it.

Last edited by cyclone3d on 2020-10-26, 17:54. Edited 1 time in total.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header

Reply 2 of 2, by istvan

User metadata
Rank Newbie
cyclone3d wrote on 2020-10-26, 17:46:

There was one of these that was sold on eBay a while ago. This is t the same one is it? Pretty sure that one went for more and somebody else here bought it.

I'm pretty sure it isn't, unless the same person decided to resell it at my local flea market without any of the accessories.