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Apple Lisa 2 (A6S0200) - Is this Fixable

stepleton

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I had not planned on pitching it just yet. I want to get it up and running, then I'll test/clean/fix the floppy drive, and from there I'll turn my attention to the disk drive and it's controller. As some have pointed out, it's missing some stuff, including a ROM chip, which maybe impossible to replace (mostly due to the data on the chip), but you never know. As for the ribbon cable from the inside of the drive to it's controller board, might be worth taking a crack at if the drive spins up, at that point I'd have nothing to loose really.

Good luck!

Just to be clear, the utility I linked is for Widget drives --- it was in response to advice here that "the widget hard drive should just go in the trash". I think that people shouldn't rush to do that. (Heck, send them to me if you don't want them.)

My utility won't do much with the non-Widget drive you have, which I believe is a Sun Remarketing creation: an Apple 25-pin to MFM adaptor board, attached to (regrettably) a Kalok MFM drive. Widgets are unreliable but I've heard that Kaloks are next level when it comes to failure! If you get bits off of it, buy a lottery ticket :)

I don't know if the adaptor board could be easily made to work with another MFM drive, but it might be possible --- it could be that you have to format the drive in some special way. I also don't know whether any MFM-adapted drive is compatible with Lisa software like the Office System; it's possible that it is not.
 

NeXT

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That is why I said to not discard the bridge board. There is essentially no openly published information about it but it's unlikely Sun Remarketing was hard-locking the drive to the board using something like a serial number. It's a standard 506 interface. $10 says that any drive with identical parameters will work, if only one set of parameters were on the ROM but unless we know how to tell the board to perform a low-level format it's still unusable. With the Profiles the format routine didn't fit on the ROM. The widget had it onboard and it responded to the same format commands. By the time this came out it's likely it's there too but nobody yet knows how to invoke it and no software exists/still exists to command it.
 

stepleton

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but unless we know how to tell the board to perform a low-level format it's still unusable
Oh, that sounds like a challenge :)

In Googling for my last post, I noticed some archived correspondence between David Gesswein and some other person about recovering data from one of these MFM drives. It's possible that the format details have therefore been discovered and could be reproduced with other hardware. It's also not unlikely that you could stick a Gesswein device on this adaptor with a disk emulation file drawn off of one of those drives.

The widget had it onboard and it responded to the same format commands.
I don't think this is quite right... while the Widget did have the firmware it needed to format the drive, I think the commands were different to what the ProFile used. You can compare both in the drive documentation over on Bitsavers. Here's my implementation of a Widget formatter for Lisa, which I wouldn't expect to work with a ProFile with the formatting kit installed.

By the time this came out it's likely it's there too but nobody yet knows how to invoke it and no software exists/still exists to command it.
I could easily imagine Sun developing only the minimum read/write capabilities into its adaptor board and relying on some other machine to format the MFM drives before mating them to the adaptor. I probably would have done something like that if I wanted to shift a bunch of Lisas out of my inventory quickly. But I really have no knowledge of what they actually did.

A dump of the adaptor ROMs, a disassembler, and a few days of being stuck at home would reveal whether the board has abilities beyond read and write.
 

NeXT

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I don't think this is quite right... while the Widget did have the firmware it needed to format the drive, I think the commands were different to what the ProFile used. You can compare both in the drive documentation over on Bitsavers. Here's my implementation of a Widget formatter for Lisa, which I wouldn't expect to work with a ProFile with the formatting kit installed.
The LLF routine used for formatting in BLU is compatible with both the Profile and the Widget.
 

stepleton

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The LLF routine used for formatting in BLU is compatible with both the Profile and the Widget.

I don't think this means that the Widget and ProFile use the same commands for formatting.

For the Widget, refer to the ERS document here: http://www.bitsavers.org/pdf/apple/disk/widget/Widget_ERS.pdf

Formatting is accomplished by a program on the host computer issuing a sequence of Format_Track diagnostic commands, among other commands for recalibrating the head positioning, seeking the heads between tracks, and other kinds of housekeeping. The format of these commands is described starting at PDF page 85, with Format_Track described on PDF page 115. A Format_Track command sequence for a Widget is something like $18, $0F, $00, $01, $F0,$78,$3C,$1E, $xx (last byte is a checksum).

For ProFile, you'll have to go to Patrick Schäfer's commented source code, also on Bitsavers. My read of the code is that issuing a single-byte $03 command formats the entire drive without any further management by the computer. To substantiate this, refer to Dr. Schäfer's documentation for his UsbWidEx device: "format drive. Jumper P7 between U23 and U24 has to be closed to allow the Z8 to erase all tracks, write sector marks, write headers and fill all blocks with a D6B9 pattern. [...] This command requires a diagnostic Z8 and takes about 3 minutes." Note that the Z8 does all the heavy lifting --- once the command is issued, the computer can only wait. You can see the details starting at line 141 of profile5LLF.asm.

Widget does not have a documented $03 command nor any hint of one in its source code, so it's incorrect to say that they respond "to the same format commands". BLU will have to handle formatting differently for Widget and ProFile.
 
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VERAULT

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Iwish someone wrote new proms to utilize the widget drive board to connect to some other drive or drive emulator. So many have been scrapped for not working or drive mechanical failures.
 

Lutiana

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Because he knows the target audience is suckers who throw money at their problems rather than do their homework and actually fix things/buy the same parts for half the price at Digi-Key. I have nothing but negative words about the guy and recommend everyone deal with him as a last option.

Off topic Mod work: Let's avoid statements like this in future. We all have our opinions on people who make money off this scene, but obviously there is a market out there for complete solutions that maybe what we would consider expensive. But just because someone has no desire or ability to fix it themselves and prefers to throw money at the problem does not mean they are "suckers." I pay someone to fix my car, not because I don't have the technical ability to work it, but rather because I just don't want to, and have better things to do with my time, that does not make me a "sucker" anymore than someone buying parts from someone who is making decent money from said parts to fix old computers is a "sucker". For some the joy is using the things, not fixing them, and that's ok since at the end of the day it still matches our mission here.

And for someone who wants to get this Lisa up and running, I am glad that there is a possibility of buying parts, albeit expensive ones, if I absolutely have to.
 

NeXT

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I and everyone else here can supply you with a wide range of options to repair with. There is nothing you lose by buying yourself out of a job like this beyond a strong sense of self-accomplishment and saying "I fixed that". You have made it quite clear you wish to take the boards under the iron and rebuild the system. We will help answer whatever questions you have to succeed in this without immediately recommending whole-unit replacement parts that are dubiously priced, regardless of the vendor.

Plus, there's always tome to learn new soldering tricks. :)
 

VERAULT

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I will agree his prices are pretty high on alot of things. but he has helped me out personally on some hard to find apple /// items at a fair price.
 

Lutiana

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I and everyone else here can supply you with a wide range of options to repair with. There is nothing you lose by buying yourself out of a job like this beyond a strong sense of self-accomplishment and saying "I fixed that". You have made it quite clear you wish to take the boards under the iron and rebuild the system. We will help answer whatever questions you have to succeed in this without immediately recommending whole-unit replacement parts that are dubiously priced, regardless of the vendor.

Plus, there's always tome to learn new soldering tricks. :)
Oh, yes, I am one who prefers to try this type of thing myself, and I will get far more enjoyment out of the repair than I ever will using the thing. I was just pointing out that many don't, and it's great that there is a place for them to get parts, regardless of how dubious any of us feel the pricing maybe. One less machine chucked into e-waste due to lack of parts is one more piece of history saved.

Ok, back on topic. I have not found schematics for this particular IO board (650-0142-F), but have found a board layout for a very close one (650-0142-E) and the schematic to what looks like a fit (050-4008-H), though I suspect that it maybe for the first version Lisa (based on the part number). Not entirely sure how to verify it's correct, so looking through some of the BOM.

My questions now are:

1. How easy will it be to replace the 3 ROMs at the top right left of the board? I can't imagine the images will be hard, but actual parts?
2. How about the 6552s for the Parallel port and Keyboard? And the 8530?
3. And then how about the COP421? That appears to be a micro controller, so I am also wondering about programming it (assuming I can still get one)? Is that TLC-866 type programming or something more complicated?
4. And of course, does one have part numbers or a source on any of these?

The rest of the missing parts are very straight forward components, mostly just caps, some resistors, transistors and what I think are oscillators (Y1, Y2 and Y3). There is a broken diode looking thing, marked as C10, but definitely not a cap as the name would imply, I need to find that on the schematic to confirm that it's what I think it is (a Schottky diode). That said, looking through the schematics I do have, this is gonna be quite the challenge to work out the values of these components, especially if I can't find closer matching schematics.
 
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stepleton

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The 050-4008-H board is the I/O board used in the Lisa 1 and Lisa 2/5. Your I/O board is the one used in a Lisa 2/10 and has some differences --- most notably, it lacks the battery that corrodes and damages Lisa 1 and Lisa 2/5 I/O boards and their surroundings.

You can find reverse-engineered 2/10 I/O board schematics of a decent quality here: https://lisa.sunder.net/cgi-bin/bookview2.cgi?zoom=0?image=0?book=6 . I've found it easiest to download the images and view them in a separate image viewer.

The COP421 chip will be the hardest for you to replace by some margin. This is a mask-programmed 4-bit microcontroller and cannot be reprogrammed. Replacement alternatives are devices that use (vintage) ROMless COP4-series chips that load the program from an external ROM. There are two options that I know of:
6522 DIPs are not too hard to find. Jameco may have them, or you can try eBay, where there are listings but it's more of a gamble. I've seldom gone wrong with Nebraska Sales and Surplus, which also lists a 6522, but apparently it's a used one. The 8530 may be similar. For the ROM stuff I will need to get back to you.

I hesitate to recommend it again, and will make this the last time, but both Dr. Schäfer and some Sapient Technologies folks tend to linger around the low-traffic LisaList2. These folks could probably tell you what C10 is from memory, and would be happy to do so.
 
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stepleton

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In re the ROMs on the I/O board --- it's top left instead of top right? Those aren't all ROMs...

The leftmost chip is an IWM. I'm not sure how hard those are to source, but Apple must have used a lot of them, and so I would hope they might not be too hard to come by. (The 2/5 didn't use an IWM --- you won't find it on your 2/5 I/O board schematic.)

The centre chip is an EPROM, details of which I will have to get back to you on.

The rightmost of the 3 is a 6504 processor --- a 6502 with fewer address lines. It's a whole CPU dedicated to handling the floppy drives. I seem to dimly remember some discussion on a website I had promised not to mention again on adapting a 6502 (or was it even a 65c02?) to substitute for the 6504.
 

stepleton

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And now for the I/O board ROM details. Per https://lisafaq.sunder.net/lisafaq-hw-rom_versions.html , it's a 2732 device. You might get away with using I/O ROM version 88, which is the ordinary ROM for Lisa 2/10s (or Macintosh XLs derived from 2/10s). I can't find a copy of it online at a glance, but I didn't look hard, and I'm sure it's out there. It's the first thing I'd try.

The only issue is that you have the Sun Remarketing 800K floppy drive modification instead of the original 400K floppy drive, and this was always fitted with a replacement I/O ROM. I don't think you need it to get the Lisa back up and running again, but I'm not sure of this. I haven't seen copies of this ROM out in the wild, but I haven't looked too hard. I do have an actual ROM that I could dump if it hasn't bit-rotted yet.

If you get a replacement (empty) 2732, it looks like you'll need to make a bit of an effort to program it with everyone's favourite, the TL866 II+:

If you have a Retro Chip Tester Pro, it looks like support is a bit more official:
 

Lutiana

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Lutiana, can you post closer hi-res photos of the corrosion of the board traces?
Corrosion? What corrosion? That's the one thing I don't seem to have in this machine. Check out the gallery I posted in the first post here, it shows the vandalism the board experienced (someone literally ripped components off the board for some reason).
 

VERAULT

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Corrosion? What corrosion? That's the one thing I don't seem to have in this machine. Check out the gallery I posted in the first post here, it shows the vandalism the board experienced (someone literally ripped components off the board for some reason).
Sorry I could be wrong but I am seeing some bluish-green stuff in these areas:
lisa2.jpg
 
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