Interconnecting classic computers

Roy J. Tellason rtellason at
Mon May 5 15:53:51 CDT 2008

On Monday 05 May 2008 15:55, Tony Duell wrote:
> As I think most of you know, I have a fairly diverse collection of
> classic computers (I suspect some others do too).
> Quite often I need to transfer data between 2 machines. Maybe to
> download a file from this PC, which I've in turn downloaded from a web
> site, to run on one of the classics. Maybe to print out some listing from
> a classic. Whatever.
> My machines vary in size from the pocket computers up to machines that
> it's not practical to move. They're scattered throughout a house. They
> are, alas, not in a machine room. Most of the machines (and all the ones
> I want to consider for this) have an RS232 port, either built-in or as an
> option (which I have). Most of the machines run kermit. Or I can simply
> print to the RS232 port on one machine and capture the incoming
> characters on the other
> So, I think the problem reduces to 'how to interconnect RS232 ports'. let
> me add some constraints :
> Must work over a distance longer than the RS232 spec allows (i.e. the
> answer is probably not 'A long RS232 cable' :-)).

What does the spec say about length with regard to that?  I was of the 
impression that you could get by with lower baud rates if you were using 
longer cables.

> Prefereably no cables at all. One solution I've come up with is to use a
> couple of line drivers and a long cable between them. A long cable that
> my parents, or the cat, will get tangled up in :-(

Even as a temporary measure?  I've got a couple of long wires running around 

> No line-of-sight between the machines
> Must work at 300 and 1200 baud. 110 and 9600 baud would be a bonus

At those (relatively) slow rates you should be able to do something fairly 
easily,  I'd think.


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M Dakin

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