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Nostalgia (AKA remembering my old Tandy.)

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July 30, 2003 4:11:30 PM

Okay, I know that we had (somewhere) a discussion going about old stuff that was primarly spawned by memories of the C=64. But then I got to remembering my first 'IBM Clone'. (And you have no idea how hard it was for me to type that ... ICBM kept wanting to come out and that's just <i>not</i> the same thing. Heh heh.)

Anywho, my first x86 computer was actually an old Tandy. It had a whopping 80088 processor, 640KB of RAM (<i>after</i> an upgrade), PC speaker sound, Tandy Color graphics (Anyone remember Tandy Color?), a 3.5" drive, and no hard drive. Since it had no hard drive it had onboard MS-DOS2. Strangely enough, this version of DOS didn't even have a format command so I had to buy pre-formatted floppies.

Oh those were the days. So many QBASIC programs, so little processing power. :)  Sadly my C=64 was a much better gaming machine...

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 4:16:08 PM

dos 2 had no format comand? i know dos three the earliest of dos i used had one... Couldn't you just put a format.com from a newer version of dos on there so you can format?

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 4:35:18 PM

Quote:
Couldn't you just put a format.com from a newer version of dos on there so you can format?

Nope. As I said there was no hard drive. DOS was loaded from an onboard chip. (In theory I might have been able to flash or replace the chip, but since there was no information available on how to do this, the theory was only a theory.)

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
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July 30, 2003 5:04:57 PM

if you put that command on a disk and went to the A: directory and typed format...i am pretty sure you could format anything you wanted...

Shame though because back then formated disks were more pricy...

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 5:07:05 PM

btw...the way that your computer was setup...your c: drive was a ROM chip? So if you did a dir of C: you would see command.com, ibmbio.....

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 5:08:10 PM

The First PC I got to seriously use wasn't actually mine, it belonged to my brother, and was quite advanced compared to yours :tongue: ...
8086 < wha-hey!
Had some graphics card (can't remember the make/model) which was fully CGA compatible, but also had a high-res, 2 colour mode that was... 640x400 I think (as opposed to the CGA standard max of 640x200).
20Mb Hard Drive
640Kb of RAM

I do recall playing double dragon on it.. that was fantastic fun... and 'outrun' too... *ahh nostalgia*

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$hit Happens. I just wish it would happen to someone else for a change.
July 30, 2003 5:10:13 PM

was double dragon that karati game where you would fight zombies and stuff? Cause i think i remember that one...

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 5:19:01 PM

Double Dragon, California Games, Scortched Earth, hmmmmmm games..... I even had a flight simulator, although i don't think you could even call it that today. This computer is LONG gone and I only had it from about age 5-10 so I havn't the sligtest clue what it was. But I did like to frisbe the old 3.5"
July 30, 2003 5:21:29 PM

i don't think i will ever throw away a computer...they are just so fun to find in your closet...remember the memories and fire it back up...hehe

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool: <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by pIII_man on 07/30/03 01:33 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
July 30, 2003 5:26:51 PM

My first "computer" was a tandy, but a bit older... a Tandy TRS-80 Color Computer 2.

Took me a while to figure out the gwbasic stuff on it... but it was cool, i still remember programming the kalidiscope and the tape (as in cassette) drive... rofl. God I'm glad computers have advanced. DO NOT TOUCH THE VOLUME CONTROL FOR GODS SAKE DONT.. ARGGG...

Shadus
July 30, 2003 5:32:55 PM

Quote:
if you put that command on a disk and went to the A: directory and typed format...i am pretty sure you could format anything you wanted...

Tried that once. Not so good when the only drive you have is drive A. Oops, formatted my format command floppy. :o 

Quote:
Shame though because back then formated disks were more pricy...

Not by much though. And I had a friend with a PC too, so sometimes I'd just get blanks and have him format them for me or format them at school.

Quote:
btw...the way that your computer was setup...your c: drive was a ROM chip? So if you did a dir of C: you would see command.com, ibmbio.....

The funny thing is that there was no C drive, at all. I've no idea just how they set it up, but basically the DOS commands worked, but no actual drive existed to even do a dir on. **shrug** It was weird. Leave it to an OEM to find solutions like that.

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 5:35:10 PM

thanx for putting up with my questions...arn't old computers great?

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 5:38:10 PM

Quote:
The First PC I got to seriously use wasn't actually mine, it belonged to my brother, and was quite advanced compared to yours...
8086 < wha-hey!
Had some graphics card (can't remember the make/model) which was fully CGA compatible, but also had a high-res, 2 colour mode that was... 640x400 I think (as opposed to the CGA standard max of 640x200).
20Mb Hard Drive
640Kb of RAM

I do recall playing double dragon on it.. that was fantastic fun... and 'outrun' too... *ahh nostalgia*

Actually, the video solution also supported MGA, MCGA, CGA, and VGA besides the 'Tandy Color' option. No SVGA or XVGA or any of them though. At least it worked great on my C=64s monitor. :)  At least you had a hard drive though. I'd have killed for one back then.

I wonder though, what was the difference between an '86' and an '88'? :\ For the life of me I don't know. Obviously whatever it was the whole '88' thing didn't catch on since we did the whole x86 thing...

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 5:39:56 PM

hehehehe, and don't forge the TURBO buttons!!!!! Maximum speed please!!
July 30, 2003 5:40:55 PM

I <i>think</i> it was something like an '86 was fully 16-bit, but an '88 actually only had an 8 bit bus or something (but still a 16-bit proc tho)

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$hit Happens. I just wish it would happen to someone else for a change.
July 30, 2003 5:41:00 PM

I had a tandy. No hard drive or 3 1/2 floppy but it had two 5.25 floppy drives. You had to load dos off the floppy and the floppy had format on it.

I'm sure you could've just copied someone's format and use it off a disk.


Also my tandy could only read the 360kb or so floppies, not the 1.2mb. We didn't get a new computer till the first pentiums were out which is approximately the same time when the internet started to get big.
July 30, 2003 5:41:22 PM

Quote:
thanx for putting up with my questions...arn't old computers great?

Yep. It took a <i>real</i> geek to use a PC back then. :)  So many limitations and non-GUI OSs... It's a wonder that PCs ever caught on. What is really amazing though is to look back at old code written in that era and see just how many tricks they used to squeeze the absolute most out of that 640KB of RAM. It's just scary. No one optimizes their code like that today.

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 5:44:32 PM

'Turbo' buttons... hehe.. all because some stuff written for an 8086 didn't use proper timers, and ran too fast on a 486SX25... I had a friend whose dad had a 486 with a turbo button, and his dad <i>insisted</i> on leaving turbo off <i>all the time</i>.. like he thought he was gonna break the pc if he used it.... I always thought it should've been called a 'run like a slug' button or something, as TURBO gives people the wrong impression....

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$hit Happens. I just wish it would happen to someone else for a change.
July 30, 2003 5:44:40 PM

Quote:
hehehehe, and don't forge the TURBO buttons!!!!! Maximum speed please!!

Yeah, I remember that. With my 486 and my first Pentium though, not with my Tandy. The Tandy was so slow that they didn't even give it a turbo option. :( 

The funny thing though was that pressing the button to switch back and forth never seemed to make a difference except for the LED display. So it makes me wonder if it even <i>did</i> anything.

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 5:47:02 PM

Quote:
I think it was something like an '86 was fully 16-bit, but an '88 actually only had an 8 bit bus or something (but still a 16-bit proc tho)

I guess that sounds reasonable enough. **shrug** I've no idea. Heh heh. I just know that mine was slower than sh__. Actual games (I had Megaman on a floppy) ran in slow motion. It actually helped though since that made it easy to dodge and aim. :o 

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 5:48:53 PM

Quote:
I had a tandy. No hard drive or 3 1/2 floppy but it had two 5.25 floppy drives. You had to load dos off the floppy and the floppy had format on it.

I'm sure you could've just copied someone's format and use it off a disk.

Maybe if I'd had to floppy drives I could have. I only had one though and the format command (at least the one that I'd copied) never paused to ask you to insert a new disk so it'd wipe out the floppy that I was running the format command from before I could do anything.

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 30, 2003 5:52:50 PM

thinking back...when i was young...before i new much about computers my dad used to have a 286... he got a military spec (mil-spec) processor cause his brother worked at roame national labs (contracted work from ibm)....anyhow he used a little device that would connect to your clock generator which had a dial on it so that you could change the frequency from 6mhz all the way to 12mhz! The great thing was this processor could hit between 11mhz and 12mhz depending on the day (some days 12mhz would cause graphics anomalies because the cpu and fsb speeds are synched).

Now that is what i call a turbo buton!

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 5:52:56 PM

Yeah it was probably something like that. Like I said we threw it out long before I knew what it was even. I do remember out VGA monitor though. And an old ass operating system. Maybe you guys could help me, it was blue and yellow and started with an 'A'. Using the number keys to navigate through the menues.
I think the VGA and OS came into the picture after our first upgrade, before that it was always DOS.
July 30, 2003 5:56:51 PM

Hmm...dunno

Anyone remember a file manager called "xtree gold"

I still use that to this day...very powerful program...

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 5:57:24 PM

No kidding! I wish I had one of those right now.
But yeah, I'm pretty sure the old turbo buttons were for running older games that simply didn't have the forsight to use real world timmings. Their thinking was more "run it as fast as the computer will let us."

edit:
Like think about running an original version of Double Dragon on your PC today. Blinding speed.

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by NateKingCole on 07/30/03 01:59 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
July 30, 2003 6:02:50 PM

yeah... I've got a disk of some old DOS games somewhere, and there's one with all these lifts everywhere - it's a crappy platform game.. you have some sort of time limit to do it, and lose a life if you run out of time.. I think you're supposed to get 3 or 5 minutes or something... I tried it on an Athlon 600 system and all 5 lives dissapeared within about 3 seconds, cos I kept running out of time :frown: .... LOL

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$hit Happens. I just wish it would happen to someone else for a change.
July 30, 2003 6:05:32 PM

hahaha....LMAO

Ya know a game i remember...it was really fun...prince of persia...that game was amazing!

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 6:10:05 PM

prince of Persia... I got that for my birthday, and played it on the 086 I mentioned earlier... <i>great</i> game... I was really the $h!t at swordfighting... slashing the fat guys was always fun... :smile:

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$hit Happens. I just wish it would happen to someone else for a change.
July 30, 2003 6:16:26 PM

I still have that game on my k6 machine...it seems to run ok even though the computer has a higher clock speed...

this forum gave me the idea to go through my old stuff and i found an intel chip...but i have no clue what it is...i am guessing it is a co-processor?

A80387 - 16

anyone have any ideas?

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 30, 2003 6:21:37 PM

Quote:
yeah... I've got a disk of some old DOS games somewhere, and there's one with all these lifts everywhere - it's a crappy platform game.. you have some sort of time limit to do it, and lose a life if you run out of time.. I think you're supposed to get 3 or 5 minutes or something... I tried it on an Athlon 600 system and all 5 lives dissapeared within about 3 seconds, cos I kept running out of time :frown: .... LOL

I did that with the very first version of Mechwarrior and my mission was over before I even had a chance to start. Blowned up I was. :(  The game obviously had no concept of timing programmed into it and just ran at full speed no matter what. Oh well. They have newer versions that are much better anyway. :)  (Not MW4 though, that one is tainted and evil.)

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 31, 2003 2:26:29 AM

You like to fire up any thing that is old.
July 31, 2003 11:22:34 AM

Quote:
A80387 - 16

Maths co-processor.. I believe that was the only real difference between a 486SX and a 486DX, was a DX had a maths co-pro built in (as has every chip since), whereas the SX did not... but if you look at an old 386 mobo, you'll probably find a socket for a 80387 chip, and you can 'upgrade' it with that chip you've found :smile: No idea what impact it would have on performance though...

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$hit Happens. I just wish it would happen to someone else for a change.
July 31, 2003 7:29:09 PM

i had a dx4-100 athlon. it couldnt play mp3s in stereo so i had to play them in mono. and it wouldnt even play them in mono if the turbo button was off.

wpdclan.com cs game server - 69.12.5.119:27015
July 31, 2003 7:31:19 PM

well it wont fit the socket (copro socket) on my amd 386dx-40 board :frown:

I dunno what else i bought that copro for....

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 31, 2003 7:33:10 PM

in graphics and math apps the copro will help alot...

in normal ussage not so much...

I just never realised the copro for a 386 was called a 387...weird...

All i can say is SX stands for sux

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 31, 2003 7:53:24 PM

Great post.
I know this is going to sound kinda weird, but do any of you guys know where I can get my hands on some of these old computers? A website or something. I think it'd be great to get one for my Dad. He was a huge computer buff back in the day, and he'd get a kick out of it!


<font color=red> "It is a good thing for an uneducated man to read books of quotations." - Sir Winston Churchill </font color=red>
July 31, 2003 8:01:55 PM

flea market or ebay...

Tomarrow i will bit on a lot of 3 old mobos (386 and 486) 2 cpus (386 and 486 dunno if they are dx or sx or what speed but who cares...its gonna be slow) a modem (isa) and a graphics card (isa...wonder if it will be better than my old diamond speedstar 24x?)...total price...right now its 99 cents...possibly it will go up to 5 bux tomarrow?

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 31, 2003 8:03:47 PM

what i really want is a mobo for a 286 and a nice 286 cpu...i have that overclocking thing i was talking about...and would love to shoot for a 100% overclock...it should be possible with a dinky passive heatsink...

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
July 31, 2003 8:08:39 PM

Quote:
I just never realised the copro for a 386 was called a 387...weird...

That's because the math co-processor chip is just the x87 floating-point unit. For a 386 it's math co-processor is a 387. For a 486, a 487.

Basically anything without a math co-processor used the general purpose registers for floating point operations. Luckily Intel eventually decided to just make the x87 FPU a part of the CPU itself. So now adays we don't even really think about the fact that our x86 CPUs also include the x87 unit. Back in the day though it could make a world of difference.

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 31, 2003 8:13:05 PM

Quote:
i had a dx4-100 athlon. it couldnt play mp3s in stereo so i had to play them in mono. and it wouldnt even play them in mono if the turbo button was off.

Wow, I can remember encoding MP3s from WAV files on my Pentium 133. That sure would take forever just for a single track. **ROFL** At least I could listen to it in stereo though. :) 

It's actually kind of scary to think of just how many years MP3 CDs have been around.

And scarier to think of just how many CD players (like walkmans and car radios and stuff) still don't support MP3 CDs. Talk about a concept just not catching on in spite of the obvious genius.

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 31, 2003 8:26:07 PM

aye - the RIAA would rather it had never caught on at all.

"Don't question it!!!" - Err
July 31, 2003 8:40:56 PM

It's funny that they're still so concerned about DVD burners for PCs when we can always rip and convert to an MP4 and put it on a CD. Not only that but thanks to most movies being broken up into scenes we can also very easily rip and burn a DVD into a set of VCDs that'll play on almost any home DVD system. Who even needs a DVD burner to copy the movie onto something that will play in a DVD player? **ROFL**

:\ Not so bright they are...

"<i>Let's see what <b>Paragraph 84-B</b> has to say about it.</i>" - Thief from <A HREF="http://www.nuklearpower.com/daily.php?date=030724" target="_new">8-Bit Theater</A>
July 31, 2003 8:51:32 PM

mpeg4 divx and xvid are my freinds :smile: ...

I will not buy a home dvd player until i find one that supports these formats...

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
August 1, 2003 1:41:54 AM

I feel so young!!! My first PC (err first family PC) was a 486DX33 with 4MB, and I believe an 80MB hard drive (I don't remember, I was 4 or 5 years old back then, I'm only 17 now).

Intelligence is not merely the wealth of knowledge but the sum of perception, wisdom, and knowledge.
August 1, 2003 2:56:54 AM

I'll give you 2 cents for all that.
August 1, 2003 2:59:28 AM

So what are you going to do fry that 286.
August 1, 2003 3:24:55 AM

it wont fry it...seriously they can take it...they had headroom...

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
August 1, 2003 3:25:56 AM

Kool so how far will you OC it?
August 1, 2003 3:53:08 AM

well...i dunno where my 286 is...it was actually my dads and he would play around with it when i was a yongin...but he gave it to me long ago...and i dunno where i put it...i have the kool overclocking device...i wish i could post pix...but he could get it to 12mhz but with graphics anomalies on hot days...because the graphics card was running out of spec..(6mhz is default)

3 386DX-25's...12 volts...glue some ln2 and a wicked amount of overclocking and you get a willamantee minus 36 pins, 33.75 million transistors and a couple hundred mhz... :cool:
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