Coleco Adam

Zane Healy healyzh at
Tue Nov 18 21:16:19 CST 2014

On Nov 18, 2014, at 3:03 PM, Geoff Oltmans <oltmansg at> wrote:

> Welcome! I've been involved in the ADAM scene for quite some time. It really is a cool little computer that is oft overlooked. You are correct that a generic PC or arcade style power supply can be used just fine with the ADAM. The printer cable also carries the ADAMNet data (the same bus that is shared by the keyboard, tape drive controller, and disk drives if you have them), but it is totally optional.
> There is pretty good support for the IDE interface. The one you are referring to (the Microfox) is a workalike of another vendor's product, the Micro Innovation IDE interface. It works akin to the XT-IDE interface that's on the PCs now, in that it will adapt an AT drive to an 8-bit data port. As such, there's a good bit of software that can be had... either with patched original ADAM software, as is the case with the native EOS/OS7 operating system (ADAM's OS or Coleco Vision), and also a special build of TDOS, which is a CP/M 2.2 replacement. TDOS will run any CP/M compatible software you care to throw at it.
> As for the magnetic media thing, reports made it sound like I could sit a DDP or floppy disk anywhere near the system and whammo... instant erasure. I have used a minimum amount of precaution making sure that a tape isn't in the drive while turning the system off and on, and haven't had a problem.

Believe it or not, it was Richard Drushel's posts about the ADAM to alt.folklore.computers on USENET, way back in '97, that got me interested in the ADAM.  It's just taken me 17 years to finally find one. :-)

I hope to have an arcade power supply by the end of the week, so that I can start building a stand-alone PS.  Unfortunately I lack a floppy drive.  I have one DDP tape, but haven't figured out how to use it, or if anything is on it.  Unfortunately while I got a boxed system, I didn't get manuals, or the DDP tape(s) that would have normally come with an ADAM.

I'm slowly making my way through trying to discover what info is available on the Internet.  So far it's been slow going, so I appreciate the answers.


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