Interconnecting classic computers
ard at p850ug1.demon.co.uk
Tue May 6 16:35:03 CDT 2008
> Tony Duell wrote:
> > So far the best I've come up with is to link one machine to a palmtop
> > (HP95LX), then transfer the data to that, carry the palmtop to the other
> > machine and transdfer the data on. It's not ideal, but it does work.
> > Any other ideas?
> Hmm, I've got a deep mistrust of any 'data over the mains' technology, but
> might that be an option here? I assume *most* of your systems are physically
It's certainly something I'd considered.
> plugged into the mains anyway, so it'd meet the ideal requirement for no extra
> cabling. Data rates presumably not lightning fast, of course...
Even those machines that are battery-powered are likely to be near a
mains socket, at least when I wasnt ot link them to another machine. So
that's not a problem.
Do true full-dupliex data-over-mains 'modems' exist? The chip I looked at
for this years ago seemed to be half-duplex only (it had a
trasnmit-enable input, and you were supposed to only have one
transmiotter enabled at a time out of all the chips on your mains
wiring).And that certainly wouldn't do here.
> Sneakernetting data around isn't such a problem in a classic context, though -
That depends on how many machins you have to climb over to get between
the 2 you want to connect :-)
> most old machines need you to be physically present in order to do anything
> (interesting) with them, so carrying the data back and forth isn't any great
> Some sort of RS232 star-based topology could be fun, though :)
I actually have soemthing called a Netcommander in front of me. It's a 16
port any-to-any RS232 switch (I also have smaller versions with 6 RS232
ports and 4 centronics ports). Since it allows different baud rates on
all the ports, it must make use of the flow control lines (otherwise what
happens if you try to send a lot of data from a 9600 baud port to a 300
baud one), but this might not be a problem if the 2 ports are set to the
Anyway, the big prolem with it is that it's one small box, and it's only
16 ports. I could link 16 classic computers to it, but (a) I've got a lot
more than 16 machines and (b) it would involve cables running everywhere,
soemthing I need to avoid. It would be interesting to use that to link up
16 'favourite' machines, but that leaves a lot more that I have to think
of another (temporary) solution for.
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