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Gauging interest: Bootable XT SCSI card

Nevets01

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What it says in the title.
Anyone interested in this sort of thing, and if so, how would you use it?
 

Eudimorphodon

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I suppose the one area that's not really covered by the XTIDE (unless this has changed and I've missed it) is it doesn't support CD-ROMs. Don't know how much call there really is for CDs on XT-class machines, but technically it might be an unfilled niche.
 

ngtwolf

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I suppose the one area that's not really covered by the XTIDE (unless this has changed and I've missed it) is it doesn't support CD-ROMs. Don't know how much call there really is for CDs on XT-class machines, but technically it might be an unfilled niche.

I assume a parallel port backpack cd rom drive would work for this though. But, yeah, I can't see the CD-Rom use-case myself. In the case of an XT-IDE, it's easiest to just move the CF card over to a modern pc and copy that way. Bootable SCSI hard drive might be useful, for something like those JAZZ drives where you can put a different image on each. Though, again, it's an XT so what kind of 'images' would you have.. they'd all be DOS.
 

maxtherabbit

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there are plenty of future domain 8-bit SCSI cards floating around that work on XT, not sure what market prices are like on them these days
 

maxtherabbit

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I suppose the one area that's not really covered by the XTIDE (unless this has changed and I've missed it) is it doesn't support CD-ROMs. Don't know how much call there really is for CDs on XT-class machines, but technically it might be an unfilled niche.

having a large removable storage medium on a slow machine can be quite handy, if only to circumvent slow file copy times
 

Eudimorphodon

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I assume a parallel port backpack cd rom drive would work for this though. But, yeah, I can't see the CD-Rom use-case myself. In the case of an XT-IDE, it's easiest to just move the CF card over to a modern pc and copy that way.

I have network cards in my machines, so that's actually my go-to solution for most file transfer situations. Now it's true that the overhead for network drives can vary a lot (from only about 20k for EtherDFS and a light packet driver to... very much more, if you're loading a whole Microsoft network stack or similar*), but when you start comparing that to how much a CD driver and MSCDEX chews up... I guess I'd rather have the network card by a fair margin if it's an either/or.

(* Of course, my favorite quick-and-dirty way of shooting something over to the XT is piping a ZIP file into netcat. Overhead for that is the 5k for the packet driver, and that's it.)
 

Eudimorphodon

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SHSUCDX is light and comes in a 8088 compatible flavor

Wow, claims to only take up 6k. That's pretty impressive.

Strictly speaking I imagine it wouldn't be impossible for someone to write a CD-ROM driver for the XTIDE card, so far as that goes, but I have no idea how onerous a task it would be. I'm sure it'd be limited to the full 16 bit latched versions of it, 8-bit XT-CF subsets need not apply.
 

bladamson

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Is it the card itself that doesn't work with CDROMs? I have an XTIDE BIOS on a network card in a 486 machine (to make it support LBA hard drives), but I am using a 16 bit IDE controller rather than the XTIDE card. The XTIDE BIOS does not detect the CDROM, but once FreeDOS is loaded SHSUCD finds it fine and it works, and Linux probes it and works as well. The only issue is that one cannot boot from the CDROM, but there's a floppy image that comes with Slackware that lets you chain-boot from CDROM after booting from floppy, so that's how I install operating systems. "sbootmgr", I think it's called.
 
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Eudimorphodon

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Is it the card itself that doesn't work with CDROMs?

So far as I know standard IDE CD-ROM drivers (IE, the "oakcdrom.sys" or "uide.sys" low-level part, not the higher MSCDROM extensions) bang on the raw hardware and don't care about the BIOS one way or the other so, yeah, I don't think there'd be any problem when you're using the XTIDE BIOS with a conventional ATA controller.

A driver to work with the actual XTIDE hardware would need to know about its, well, 8-bit-y-ness and nonstandard I/O mapping.
 

ngtwolf

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I have network cards in my machines, so that's actually my go-to solution for most file transfer situations. Now it's true that the overhead for network drives can vary a lot (from only about 20k for EtherDFS and a light packet driver to... very much more, if you're loading a whole Microsoft network stack or similar*), but when you start comparing that to how much a CD driver and MSCDEX chews up... I guess I'd rather have the network card by a fair margin if it's an either/or.

(* Of course, my favorite quick-and-dirty way of shooting something over to the XT is piping a ZIP file into netcat. Overhead for that is the 5k for the packet driver, and that's it.)

I haven't done anything with my Tandy 1000, but I did set up my PS/1 with the full microsoft network stack so I could access network shares off a samba NAS so that's usually my go-to solution. It's specifically used for IMD to image floppies to and from a network share so I don't have to deal with the ftp stuff. I originally planned to do it so I could also play games on that machine and have the saves stay backed up on the NAS and allow me to use any machine and reload saves, but it turns out that I'm not a PC gamer. :) I doubt the full stack would work very well on the Tandy though, but I guess I'll eventually figure that out.
 

Mike Chambers

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I'm sure there would be uses for some people, but I think generally speaking, the XT-IDE or XT-CF covers most of the bases.

Not that I wouldn't love to see this happen. :)

More options are good.
 
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