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Andromeda UDC-11

Qbus

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In an old Nuclear Data system that I am playing around with that is basically a repackaged 11/23 with an 8186 CPU card and a Qbus backplane there is an Andromeda System UDC-11 card. This card fits in the A/B slots and the interesting thing is that it supports a floppy and a MFM hard drive. The hard drive was missing when I got the system so have no idea what it was but will speculate that it was a ST-225, hard to go wrong with a 225. Just pushed the whole mess into the shop and will start playing around with it, like I said it has a stock 8186 CPU with the extended memory and the FPU , what looks like a standard four port communications card, the UDC-11, memory card and a internal set of full size set of cards for a onboard terminal. Anyone know anything about the Andromeda card? Want to stuff it in my 11/23 but wonder if it will want to be a RL or RX and don’t know how it will play with the RL and RX controller already in the system? The system also has a full size card that appears to be a large interface to multiple ports or contact closures and may have been targeted at Nuclear Data’s attempt to build a Mimic system? Somehow makes me think of the old Sci-Fi movie Andromeda Strain, anyone else old enough to remember that?
 

w6pug

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Do you still have this card? I don't have an interface card, and I think that one emulated a RX drive ... if you don't need it, would you consider selling it? Thx. I can watch this thread and if you want my email, I am good with that ... doug
 

tradde

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Somehow makes me think of the old Sci-Fi movie Andromeda Strain, anyone else old enough to remember that?
Of course some of us are old enough to remember that. I can't help with anything on the board, but good luck messing with it. Sounds like fun.
 

Qbus

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Let me roll the whole mess back into the shop. Spent the last several weeks playing around with the paper tape project but all the technical issues have been resolved and now down to trying to write a driver for use with the paper tape system and my programming skills suck so can put that aside and look at the IN system again. Just took a quick look out in the storage aria and the UDC-11 has a fat multi conductor cable that runs to a IN card that brakes it out to a cable attached to a 5 ¼ floppy drive and the two cables that once attached to a MFM drive. Going to bite the bullet and try stuffing the card up my 11/23 running RT-11 and see if I can recognize that device and maybe write to it. Don’t know what DY.SYS or maybe DX.SYS will do if anything at all, somehow thinks I need the drivers for the RX33/50 family.
Will take some pictures of the card and system after I get them in here, and will consider selling the card, but think you will want the 5 ¼ drive and the board and cables for the complete set.
Will also go back and look for the movie and try to see if any eights or elevens make a cameo in it.
 

w6pug

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Am looking for Andromeda UDC11 card - if any of you have one that works I would be interested - please let me know!
I don't know what the equivalent is by other makers, but I do know the Andromeda has worked in other systems similar to mine, and it is easier to duplicate success than it is to create it from scratch!
Thanks - doug
 

Qbus

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Nobody can do it all, and I have like ten thousand projects going on around here and on top of all this the people I work for have some strange idea on how I should be working for them and not on what I want to do. So I have decided to sell off the UDC-11 card along with the floppy drive and cables and stuff for a MFM drive to w6pug so hope to see him soon take over this thread! While I still have it thought I would post a picture just so everyone can see what the subject of this thread is.UDC11.jpg
 

gslick

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While I still have it thought I would post a picture just so everyone can see what the subject of this thread is.View attachment 20122

Oh, after seeing that pictured with the big Signetics 8X305 microcontroller I remembered that I had a board that looked the same. Just pulled it out and it is the same Andromeda xDC11 card. Were there both WDC11 and UDC11 versions? Looks like some of the hand written labels on the socketed programmable parts on your board might be labeled UDCxx while on mine the are WDCxx.

Does anyone have manuals for these boards? Mine came attached to a 3.5-inch MFM hard drive and floppy. I have never tried to get that storage system running in any system.
 

w6pug

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Bit of followup on Andromeda board

Bit of followup on Andromeda board

You know, I was having the Dickens of a time finding one of these, and NOW I am finding you guys have them sitting around with all of the goodies!:D I was at Frustration Level 47 when Qbus saved my bacon - thank you Qbus ... UPS says it will arrive today and I am looking forward to it. I need to figger out how to partition the hard drive because RT-11 does not like drives bigger than 40M (I think- have to check that, too - been a while), but piece by piece, this thing is coming together. Since I have to stick the drives in an expansion box, I am going to have to get power to them as well ... so as you guys see, this project gets more and more interesting. When I get the thing pseudo-running I will attach a photo ... take care and thanks to EVERYONE who has helped me get this far with the cornucopia (how's THAT for a word :D!) of information. Been 30 years since I have dealt with pdp-11/23 and RT-11, so this is Purdy exciting stuff to me again, and that is a nice feeling to have. Thanks again! If someone DOES have the manual and can post a link to it, I, too, would be grateful!

Oh, after seeing that pictured with the big Signetics 8X305 microcontroller I remembered that I had a board that looked the same. Just pulled it out and it is the same Andromeda xDC11 card. Were there both WDC11 and UDC11 versions? Looks like some of the hand written labels on the socketed programmable parts on your board might be labeled UDCxx while on mine the are WDCxx.

Does anyone have manuals for these boards? Mine came attached to a 3.5-inch MFM hard drive and floppy. I have never tried to get that storage system running in any system.
 

gslick

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I have no idea how you configure the Andromeda WDC11 / UDC11 boards. I never found any manuals. Maybe there is a magic sequence of values you can manually poke into board registers using ODT that cause it to format and initialize the attached drives. Might be hard to get anywhere with one of these boards without a manual.

-Glen
 

Qbus

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I have the original power supply that went into that chassis that I sent you if you need it to power the drives. The original system used a KDF11-AA (8186) card that was configured fairly standard but don’t remember if it was set to start at some other address then 173000 As a rule I generally pull the KDF11 cards and set them to start in ODT at 173000 for testing.
That system had an internal terminal that consumed a whopping three full size Qbus cards and on one of the cards there are about half a dozen ROM chips and maybe the microcode for the card lived on them. Have no idea if by looking at the chips if I can somehow determine what address they were in the system and had assumed they were all just for the terminal functions but that appears to be a bunch of ROM for something as simple as a monochrome terminal. It’s interesting that the internal terminal was also fed by port one from the four channel communications card by a jumper to one of the terminal cards. So maybe the Nuclear Data people also had some functions on that card that acted something like a BDV11 Bootstrap terminator?
 

w6pug

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Jul 2, 2014
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The DEC Peripherals Handbook has about 4 pages of description for the UDC-11 card .... I am not sure how consistent the documentation is across different manufacturer's cards (so I have to ask if the UDC-11 DEC would be same [configuration wise] as for an Andromeda UDC-11, but if that will help, I can scan those pages out of the Periph Handbook and post them as an attachment, if you think that will help.
As far as the drives and power, the only drive in the package when it arrived was the 5.25" floppy [no Winchester] and the door gate is jammed so I have set it aside right now. If you still have the Winchester, can you look on the frame of it and see if you can find the frame and model and send to me so I can see if I can find one online?
As far as power, it looks like a normal 200w +5V and +12v should cover it, and I have a couple of old PC's I can tear down and pull a power supply out ... probably be cheaper for me to do that than what the cost of shipping would be. I can send you an email and we can go forward on that. OBTW - package arrived late yesterday afternoon and you did a good job packing it! Thanks - was going to send you email anyway and let you know but I saw this post this morning so thought I would answer it.
If you or someone wants me to scan in those pages from the Periph Handbook, just let me know. Now you guys know all I know and more! Take care and thanks! :) W6PUG
 
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