What's the rarest or most unusual computer-related item do you own? [Tek 4132]

Jon Elson jonelson126 at gmail.com
Sat Jan 14 20:29:07 CST 2017

On 01/14/2017 05:40 PM, Rick Bensene wrote:
>> From: "Rick Bensene" <rickb at bensene.com>
>>> - A Tektronix 4132 Unix workstation  using a National 32016 CPU and a
>>> 4.2bsd port called UTek
> Jon wrote:
>> Gee, how does it perform?  I built a clone of a Logical Microcomputer Co. 32016 Multibus system and got it working.
>> But, it was glacially slow!  I did have some memory that was likely a little slower than the stock memory, but it wasn't insanely slow.  But, firing up certain things >like editors was just maddening.  And, I'm not talking about Emacs, just vi.  I eventually got a MicroVAX-II to replace it, and, yes, that DID have a cache to speed >up the memory, but it was quite a difference.
> Well...considering the era, it wasn't too bad.  By today's standards, yeah, it's pretty darned slow.
> Vi starts up pretty quick, even with a couple of terminals running on it.   It runs rogue pretty nicely, quick enough for multiple people to play it at once.
> The machine has 7MB of RAM, which really helps.   Without additional RAM, there's only 1MB on the main board, and running it with just 1MB makes it incredibly slow.  There isn't any external cache.
Ahh, that may be part of the difference.  I can't remember how much 
memory I had on it.  I would not be surprised if it was as tiny as 128 
KB, or maybe 256 KB.  I'll check my schematics to see how many address 
lines were implemented.
> It's fun to fire it up and just relive the days when I was on cloud nine to have my own personal Unix workstation that I built myself from parts.
If mine hadn't performed so poorly, I might have continued to use it, 
and upgraded parts.
I got versions of Genix and Xenix with it.  These were likely early 
ports for the 32016, and may have had poor implementations for the MMU 
for instance.


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