Your computers and Operating systems

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rene
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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by rene » Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:27 am

BG405 wrote:My Mum gave me her expensive Packard Bell P133 (with Win95) which later got upgraded from 16MB RAM to 128MB
WARNING! That machine's with little doubt Intel Triton based, and unless it's the rare 430HX, it won't be able to cache more than 64MB in L2. Take out 64MB or we might need to tell your mum that you are not using her gift to full technical potential.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by MintBean » Tue Jul 11, 2017 12:10 pm

Wow, seriously impressed with the quality of that Blood remake.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by BG405 » Tue Jul 11, 2017 5:39 pm

rene wrote:
BG405 wrote:My Mum gave me her expensive Packard Bell P133 (with Win95) which later got upgraded from 16MB RAM to 128MB
WARNING! That machine's with little doubt Intel Triton based, and unless it's the rare 430HX, it won't be able to cache more than 64MB in L2. Take out 64MB or we might need to tell your mum that you are not using her gift to full technical potential.
:lol:
I'll have to research this but as far as I can remember it had the PB640 motherboard. Max RAM was 128MB and the best processor it could run was a P233MMX (some boards coukld only use up to 200MHz, no MMX IIRC). That machine along with my home-built 3GHz Phenom (again IIRC) quad-core system were stolen years ago, would have loved to try Linux on those.
Dell Inspiron 1525 - LM17.3 CE 64-------------------Acer D255E 2GB - Manjaro KDE, LM17.3 KDE 32
Toshiba NB305 - Manjaro KDE------------------------K7S5A AMD 1.2GHz - LM17.3 Xfce 32 & WinXP-Pro
Acer Aspire E11 ES1-111M - LM18.2 KDE 64 ----Dell PII 350 64MB - Puppy 4.3 & Win98-SE

rene
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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by rene » Tue Jul 11, 2017 6:06 pm

BG405 wrote:I'll have to research this but as far as I can remember it had the PB640 motherboard.
That's Triton alright, the original 430FX: http://www.reocities.com/sjg/mother/PB640.gif. 128MB max indeed but only 64MB of it L2-cached (with the L2 residing on the motherboard, rather than on-die as for modern CPUs). Admittedly, I may have at the time been slightly religious about things like that. Which wouldn't be to say that ...
That machine along with my home-built 3GHz Phenom (again IIRC) quad-core system were stolen years ago, would have loved to try Linux on those.
... the P233MMX Triton-system that I only last week reinstalled with Debian 6 does NOT in fact have only 64MB. Ran up-to-date Debian 8 with Xfce but the recently released Debian 9 dropped support for the original Pentium, making the much better suited Debian 6 as non-current as Debian 8 anyway, so to heck with it :)

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Veerstryngh Thynner » Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:02 pm

Hi all,

When I was born, only wealthy and powerful multinationals could afford computers. The company my dad worked for, for almost half a century, wasn't quite in that league, but still owned a computer that occupied a large room. It ran with punch card "harmonicas", I think. At some stage a huge, primitive sort of floppy disc was also involved. And only selected staff, my father (now in his late eighties) one of those, benefited from that machine's limited services. My dad was never allowed near the behemoth, as he told me. Always under strict supervision. But all that monster ever did was churning out huge packs of printed paper, as far as I know.

I myself was in my middle thirties when I touched my first computer. That machine was unbelievably lumpy and belonged to a social work training centre in which I was a mature student. DOS its operating system - and what a headache that was! I may still have that DOS instruction manual somewhere, but I haven't seen it for a very long while now. For home use, though, I had an electric 'Brother' typewriter with integrated printer. However, its ink cassettes were rather expensive and usually didn't last very long. But I could borrow a desktop computer from a friend, somehow. That one, too, was running on DOS, I think. I don't remember the brand, but it weighed a ton.

I also recall the very first MS Windows release ever: in monochrome of very little sophistication. But MS soon got its act together - and so I progressed, all the way up, from Windows 95 to Windows 7. As you do. The latter ran on a series of bog-standard desktops. But I skipped Windows Vista. Important to realise, though, is that I was totally unaware, up to that point, of the existence of Open Source. Or, for that matter, of an operational system called Linux. A measure, perhaps, of how successful Microsoft propaganda has been, over the decades.

A neighbour, very much more IT-savvy than I'll ever be - but not quite yet a friend then - regularly came to the rescue, in case of major Windows 7 emergencies. But at some stage, Windows 7 "accidents" followed each other up at such a ludicrous rate that it drove us both nuts. That's where my neighbour drew a line in the sand and issued an ultimatum. And that, basically, is how I was introduced to Linux. Shortly thereafter, Ubuntu 10.3 was installed (on an old Dell desktop). No more crashes every three minutes.

All that happened about seven years ago, I think. Stability and reliability still what I value most, in Linux. In the meantime, I had my ups and downs with Ubuntu 11, Dream Studio and Ubuntu 12. All, as far as I recall, installed on a range of old Dell desktops. My first laptop, however, was a Toshiba. Its mother board gave up just three months after purchase. And it took my local computer repairmen a whopping seven more to figure that out. I'll never buy a Toshiba laptop ever again. But presently I'm typing this post on a Lenovo G585 laptop. And my desktop is a sturdy IBM.

I'm still using Windows 7, though - albeit in a very limited way. But Windows 8 and 10 I only touch when there's no alternative. A nightmare both, as far as I'm concerned!

Of recently, I also owned an auxiliary Packard Bell laptop. It carried a couple of virtual orchestras and a voice changer. Unfortunately, though, it gave up the ghost, two months ago. I'm now looking around for a decent replacement and haven't yet succeeded in finding one.

Veerstryngh Thynner

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by MurphCID » Sat Feb 03, 2018 10:27 am

I learned to program on a punch card machine, a honeywell system that the university had.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by oxygenfarm » Sat Feb 03, 2018 11:30 am

In 1982 I was running a nonprofit, me with a philosophy degree, and heard about these computer things. Realizing there was much wasted time/motion in office procedures like typing and filing, I got a small grant and bought two TRS-80 Model 4s...each with a 5.25 floppy and 64k RAM. A friendly Radio Shack salesman helped me install an additional floppy in one computer, and I was able to run MultiMate on one drive and store output on the other.
The machines ran, first TRS-dos and later LS-dos, all with this 64k RAM.
Then I met Leroy and his TRS80 Computer Club, a great bunch of guys playing with Model 3s (8" disks) and Model 4s, with 5.25 and later (great breakthru) 3.5 hard floppies later two-sided and 1.4 MG data. Then we found a small plug-in board which increased RAM to almost 1 GB!!! And speed happened.
I loaded several applications (word, spreadsheet, data) into this monumental RAM and became very productive. We completely revised office procedures: secretaries became receptionists and info technicians, pro staff drafted their own reports and entered their own data. Printers were handled by the secretaries, and I wrote all the analyzed summaries. Paradise!
Then we graduated to Model 1000s, including a 1000 P which allowed me to do work at home on weekends.
Whenever Radio Shack had a fire sale (like Model 2000s) we expended our inventory; everyone became more productive.
Ah.......those good old days!
After retirement I taught M$ applications at a college and got free OSs and software. After I stopped teaching I began to recycle old computers, loading various Linuxes and finall settled on Mint, even though some old iron still needs AntiX or Puppy.
I'm currently using a 5-year old Gateway with AMD 4-core and 4 GB RAM and am wondering whether to install an SSD.
Advice appreciated, as always.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Jim Hauser » Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:03 pm

800px-Digicomp_I.JPG
The Digi-Comp I was a functioning, mechanical digital computer sold in kit form. It was originally manufactured from polystyrene parts by E.S.R., Inc. starting in 1963 and sold as an educational toy for US$4.99.

This was my first computer when I was a kid. You had to assemble it yourself. You "programmed" it with hollow tubes on the upper three (of four) sliders. A clock cycle involved pulling and pushing the lowest slider once. Manual input was done using the upper three sliders. It could count from 0 - 7 in binary and played a mean game of nim.

It required no electricity (or programming language.)

Currently I am running Mint KDE 18.3 using a water cooled 8-core 4 gigahertz CPU with 16 gigabytes RAM, dual monitors and 4 hard drives (6 TB.)

Did I leave something out?

I know but it is a very long story... Cheers! :-)

PS. I still assemble my own...

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by BG405 » Mon Feb 05, 2018 2:29 pm

Jim Hauser wrote:The Digi-Comp I was a functioning, mechanical digital computer sold in kit form. It was originally manufactured from polystyrene parts by E.S.R., Inc. starting in 1963 and sold as an educational toy for US$4.99.
Fascinating! And for a fiver? Never heard of nim though.

I was looking for my PSION 3c earlier (have cats on me now, as usual) & will have a go with that. Sadly the rubberized coating turned to goo long ago. Quite good little machines, I'll post photos when I find it. Will be good if I can find the data cable for it. Anyone here have a PSION?
Dell Inspiron 1525 - LM17.3 CE 64-------------------Acer D255E 2GB - Manjaro KDE, LM17.3 KDE 32
Toshiba NB305 - Manjaro KDE------------------------K7S5A AMD 1.2GHz - LM17.3 Xfce 32 & WinXP-Pro
Acer Aspire E11 ES1-111M - LM18.2 KDE 64 ----Dell PII 350 64MB - Puppy 4.3 & Win98-SE

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Jim Hauser » Mon Feb 05, 2018 2:41 pm

BG405 wrote:
Jim Hauser wrote:The Digi-Comp I was a functioning, mechanical digital computer sold in kit form. It was originally manufactured from polystyrene parts by E.S.R., Inc. starting in 1963 and sold as an educational toy for US$4.99.
Fascinating! And for a fiver? Never heard of nim though.

I was looking for my PSION 3c earlier (have cats on me now, as usual) & will have a go with that. Sadly the rubberized coating turned to goo long ago. Quite good little machines, I'll post photos when I find it. Will be good if I can find the data cable for it. Anyone here have a PSION?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nim

https://www.archimedes-lab.org/game_nim ... _game.html

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by BG405 » Mon Feb 05, 2018 8:27 pm

Very useful, thanks. Wikipedia was actually my next port of call w.r.t. this, looks interesting!
Dell Inspiron 1525 - LM17.3 CE 64-------------------Acer D255E 2GB - Manjaro KDE, LM17.3 KDE 32
Toshiba NB305 - Manjaro KDE------------------------K7S5A AMD 1.2GHz - LM17.3 Xfce 32 & WinXP-Pro
Acer Aspire E11 ES1-111M - LM18.2 KDE 64 ----Dell PII 350 64MB - Puppy 4.3 & Win98-SE

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Fred Barclay » Tue Feb 06, 2018 7:04 pm

Jim Hauser wrote:800px-Digicomp_I.JPG

The Digi-Comp I was a functioning, mechanical digital computer sold in kit form. It was originally manufactured from polystyrene parts by E.S.R., Inc. starting in 1963 and sold as an educational toy for US$4.99.

This was my first computer when I was a kid. You had to assemble it yourself. You "programmed" it with hollow tubes on the upper three (of four) sliders. A clock cycle involved pulling and pushing the lowest slider once. Manual input was done using the upper three sliders. It could count from 0 - 7 in binary and played a mean game of nim.

It required no electricity (or programming language.)
:shock:
I want one!
Image
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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Jim Hauser » Tue Feb 06, 2018 8:00 pm

Fred Barclay wrote:
Jim Hauser wrote:800px-Digicomp_I.JPG

The Digi-Comp I was a functioning, mechanical digital computer sold in kit form. It was originally manufactured from polystyrene parts by E.S.R., Inc. starting in 1963 and sold as an educational toy for US$4.99.

This was my first computer when I was a kid. You had to assemble it yourself. You "programmed" it with hollow tubes on the upper three (of four) sliders. A clock cycle involved pulling and pushing the lowest slider once. Manual input was done using the upper three sliders. It could count from 0 - 7 in binary and played a mean game of nim.

It required no electricity (or programming language.)
:shock:
I want one!
They are still available but a bit more expensive (US $50 - $60). Here is one site I found that sells them:

http://www.mindsontoys.com/kits.htm?dc1_main.htm

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by MurphCID » Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:23 pm

computers have become almost ridiculously powerful compared to what I started with back in 1985. Just unreal. Going from 128 kilobytes of ram to 32 gigabytes of ram in my home computer brings it home.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Portreve » Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:35 pm

MurphCID wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 1:23 pm
computers have become almost ridiculously powerful compared to what I started with back in 1985. Just unreal. Going from 128 kilobytes of ram to 32 gigabytes of ram in my home computer brings it home.
Yeah, I share your perspective on this.

In my previous post, I mentioned that I was first exposed to the Macintosh platform in 1985. What I was touching and using at a local tech expo were a Mac 128 and a Mac 512. So yes, having just 128 or 512 KB of RAM (respectively) is something with which I am quite familiar. Of course, let's face it, PC users were essentially trapped in 640 KB for a virtual eternity, and even to the extent they could put in more, by and large much beyond 2MB was either impossible, or it was a waste.

It's of some interest to note that OSs used to be written in teeny tiny little code to fit into (by modern standards) nearly no RAM, and it's amazing what can be done even then.
Peoples of the universe, please attend carefully: the message which follows is vital to the future of you all.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by slipstick » Thu Jun 14, 2018 6:39 pm

Portreve wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:35 pm
It's of some interest to note that OSs used to be written in teeny tiny little code to fit into (by modern standards) nearly no RAM, and it's amazing what can be done even then.
Yes, it does seem amazing now. As I mentioned in my post on page1 of this thread, my first computer experience was programming in FORTRAN II on an IBM 1620. Standard memory on that machine was 20,000 BCD characters (not bytes - 6 bits/character, 4 for BCD, a flag bit, and a parity bit - magnetic core memory, of course). My university had splurged and bought another memory unit, so we had a whole 40,000 characters. But somehow, they were able to squeeze into this space a FORTRAN "Load and Go" compiler, which could reside in memory while batch compiling user programs. No operating system at all, though.
In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they ain't.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by Portreve » Thu Jun 14, 2018 7:24 pm

slipstick wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 6:39 pm
Portreve wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:35 pm
It's of some interest to note that OSs used to be written in teeny tiny little code to fit into (by modern standards) nearly no RAM, and it's amazing what can be done even then.
Yes, it does seem amazing now. As I mentioned in my post on page1 of this thread, my first computer experience was programming in FORTRAN II on an IBM 1620. Standard memory on that machine was 20,000 BCD characters (not bytes - 6 bits/character, 4 for BCD, a flag bit, and a parity bit - magnetic core memory, of course). My university had splurged and bought another memory unit, so we had a whole 40,000 characters. But somehow, they were able to squeeze into this space a FORTRAN "Load and Go" compiler, which could reside in memory while batch compiling user programs. No operating system at all, though.
*respects*

Heck, we flew to the Moon and back with about that. It's hard to interpret how much RAM and storage it had in modern terms since they weren't using modern data standards, just like the IBM 1620, but it was probably fairly close.
Peoples of the universe, please attend carefully: the message which follows is vital to the future of you all.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by MurphCID » Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:43 pm

What I have in this laptop which weighs less than 2.5lbs is more powerful that many desktops I had that weighed 30+! The screen is as large as that of my first computer at 13.3", and has more resolution than the $800 19" CRT monitor I had that cost just under what this thing did ($1,035 incl. tax). I remember getting the old Zenith Z-150 with the 8088, 640Kb of Ram, a 3.5" and 5.25" floppy and later a used 20 mb hard drive and thinking I was the stuff! I could play games on the old CRT monitor. Zork, and other similar text games. Life was so innocent back then....

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by slipstick » Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:36 pm

MurphCID wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:43 pm
I could play games on the old CRT monitor. Zork, and other similar text games. Life was so innocent back then....
On my first IBM PC, I used to play "Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards". Those were the days!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leisure_S ... ge_Lizards
In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they ain't.

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Re: Your computers and Operating systems

Post by MurphCID » Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:53 pm

slipstick wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:36 pm
MurphCID wrote:
Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:43 pm
I could play games on the old CRT monitor. Zork, and other similar text games. Life was so innocent back then....
On my first IBM PC, I used to play "Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards". Those were the days!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leisure_S ... ge_Lizards
I remember that game, it was a hoot, and very risque for its time.

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