PDP11 adventures

Seth J. Morabito sethm at loomcom.com
Thu Dec 7 20:10:26 CST 2006

On Thu, Dec 07, 2006 at 07:20:05PM +0000, Adrian Graham wrote:
> On 6/12/06 22:27, "Gordon JC Pearce" <gordon at gjcp.net> wrote:
> >> Indeed, it looks like the original boot drive (also an RD53) long gave up
> >> the ghost, which is a shame because it had RT11 5.4 and one of the systems I
> >> wrote in the 1980's......
> > 
> > What actually fails in them?
> Head actuator I think; it powers up and spins up, doesn't sound headcrashed
> but I can't hear or feel the heads move.....

Definitely check for stiction, it's a very common problem on RD53s.  If
the data on them is worth saving, you can probably make a clean enough
environment in your home or office to open up the drive assembly and
nudge the head loose from the sticky rubber that it's parked against.
You can probably get at least one good read out of it without it
crashing (I know folks who've opened up their RD53s, reassembled them,
and run them successfully for months afterward.  YMMV!)


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