AlphaStation 200 NVRAM Problem

Jarratt RMA robert.jarratt at
Tue May 3 16:18:03 CDT 2016

>     On 03 May 2016 at 18:20 "Maciej W. Rozycki" <macro at> wrote:
>     On Mon, 2 May 2016, Robert Jarratt wrote:
>     > I decided to attempt the construction of an adapter. But it is the
>     > connectors which always bite me because I don't know what all the types
>     > of
>     > connector are. I naively assumed that an IDC 10-way (2x5) would do the
>     > trick, but it is too wide to go into the male connector on the board.
>     >
>     > What kinds of connectors exist for ribbon cables that can be used to go
>     > into
>     > a 2x5 connector, but which don't have a lot of space at the sides?
>     I think this header is intended for a crimp wire receptacle, like:
>     <>. This is
>     non-polarised though; getting one that is polarised and with the right key
>     might be a bit of a challenge. Alternatively a PCB socket like:
>     <> would do too; again
>     getting a polarised one seems tough.

The crimp wire one looks like it would work, thanks for the suggestion!

>     I don't know which of the two solutions the original DEC SROM "dongle"
>     used. I can only find 3 references quoting the part number, which is/was
>     96-RM001-01. It provided for a standard DECconnect cable, so I think it's
>     actually quite likely that it was just a small daughtercard with a PCB
>     socket, line driver and receiver ICs (DEC documentation quotes 1488 and
>     1489, but with a pair of wires used for communication that looks like an
>     overkill to me -- a single IC like MAX232N would do IMHO; RS sell them
>     individually even) and their associated passive components, and then an
>     MMJ socket, all on the PCB. Obviously these days you probably want a DE-9
>     connector instead. ;)

I have a MAX232CPE now, just need the connectors and one more 1uF capacitor and
I should have all I need.

>     I wonder if I shouldn't actually make something like this myself just for
>     fun -- to have a way to peek at my DEC 3000's internals even though it
>     appears healthy overall.
>     Maciej

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