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PC/IX Images

medavidson

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Aug 10, 2009
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PC/ix...

PC/ix...

It's been a LONG time since I thought about this, but I definitely remember that PC/ix would NOT run on anything but an XT. You couldn't run it on at AT or 386 at all. If I'm remembering correctly, this was intentional. IBM had a deal to sell Xenix on the AT and they didn't want PC/ix eating into that market. After all, the AT was much faster and had a bigger hard drive.

At one time, I also owned Interactive's (the people who created PC/ix) 386/ix with the full-blown manual set. I'm so mad at myself for letting both these items go years ago.

Mark
 

Klee

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I just found this very interesting post , but does anybody still have the disk images listed in beginning of this thread?
 

glitch

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Dunfield ImageDisk format images here:

http://filedump.glitchwrks.com/software/vintage/ibm/pcix/

There's a .zip archive under images/ if you want all 19 in a compressed format. These images are still available on maben.homeip.net, albeit in a different directory. maben.homeip.net also doesn't seem to have a ton of bandwidth to spare, whereas I just found out my hosting package includes unlimited transfer!
 

Klee

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dunfield imagedisk format images here:

http://filedump.glitchwrks.com/software/vintage/ibm/pcix/

there's a .zip archive under images/ if you want all 19 in a compressed format. These images are still available on maben.homeip.net, albeit in a different directory. Maben.homeip.net also doesn't seem to have a ton of bandwidth to spare, whereas i just found out my hosting package includes unlimited transfer!

Thanks!! but it seems to be down.
 

Klee

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Any tips on installing it? Typed "install" at the command prompt and it reads off the floppy for about 10-15 seconds then floppy light goes out and im left with a flashing curser and it is not responsive to the keyboard.

Tried it on two pc's , one a 8088 with 256k ram and my 8086 deskpro with 640k and it does the exact same thing on both. Also tried two different image files and two different image programs. Hummm..........


Update: It still does not install , the first disc boots fine and I can run format floppys and run the other commands but not the install command. Also it cannot read the other discs in the series that I made once its booted off the 01maint disc , ls command shows "..No such file or directory" .

Any of you older version Unix gurus can help?
 
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Klee

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Installing now!!

I can not find any install guide at all for PC/IX on the internet. I did read a tiny section of a book in google books about it was designed to use a 8087 so I stuck one in just incase.

I was playing around with the dunfield 01maint.imd image file with Dave Dunfields Imagedisk program ( specificly the IMDU.COM ) and was looking at the "F5 STRINGS" function just poking about and noticed the program listed a big compressed file in the image along with the other programs so I ran imdu with the" /e maint.imd "switch to expand the data and then used the "F5" function again.

Now it shows lots more info and under the "install.c" area it listed all the outputs of install.c , replys to commands error messages a note about max hd size is 305 sectors and ;ots more interesting stuff also this "press space bar to install".

PRESS THE SPACE BAR TO INSTALL ..................is it that simple?

Not really because with the original .imd file it never accepted the spacebar input.

Next I renamed the maint.imd to 01maint.imd and booted off of it just to try it out.

It works , after typing the install command and after the floppy light goes out and pressing the space bar it goes straight to the partition section of the install.!!!

But its inconsistant , after about 5 reboots to test it out it only went on with the install 2 times and on the second time I started the install and once it makes it to the partition setup screen everything is ok. Dont know if its the floppy , or one of the 360k drives i'm using.

It is also inconsistant on the Deskpro it seems , but I only tried to run it twice.

The unmodded 01maint.imd file refused to ever accept the space bar input.

Now I need to make more install floppys to finish the install.
 
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Klee

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Installed then rebooted and errored out "cannot load unix press cntrl alt delete"

:(
 

Mike Chambers

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THANKS to amouse for posting this! i've never heard of PC/IX before, it looks pretty cool. looks like a lot of you are having problems getting it to run without using real hardware. it runs perfectly the PC emu i've been writing.

i can upload it pretty soon if anybody wants to try PC/IX but have been having problems with other emulators. from what i've seen so far, MINIX 2 blows this out of the water. :p

not really a fair comparison though, but this is a really cool piece of computing history.
 

Klee

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THANKS to amouse for posting this! i've never heard of PC/IX before, it looks pretty cool. looks like a lot of you are having problems getting it to run without using real hardware. it runs perfectly the PC emu i've been writing.

i can upload it pretty soon if anybody wants to try PC/IX but have been having problems with other emulators. from what i've seen so far, MINIX 2 blows this out of the water. :p

not really a fair comparison though, but this is a really cool piece of computing history.


Well I'm using real hardware and it has issues for me just trying to install it.

You have installed it on your emulator? How did the install go , any problems?
 
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Mike Chambers

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well all i really did with it was boot the maintenance disk and run a few commands, so i havent exactly given it a full work out.
 

bengo

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I will Like to try it, i have been looking for it to "Emulate" Andrew Tanenbaum minix 1.0 dev environment and compile it (minix 1.0) over it.

would be nice if you can share a virtualized image. thanks in advance
 

Klee

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I'm still having no luck installing this , the maint disk will boot on a 286 with 1 mb ram . It does not like a VGA card as the lower half of all text is missing.

I have been using a microscience 20mb drive and a WD XT- GEN controller card and letting the installer create a 10 mb partition.

After the install it , both on the 8088 and 286 , errors out that it cannot boot unix.

I'm thinking it has issues with larger hard drives than 10 mb.

Maybe I need a IBM machine to install it on, could it be checking for the IBM BASIC roms that are not on my clone.?

This would really be cool it it would just boot up , as it is supposed to work on a 8088 with 256k ram.

Does anybody have any docs on this OS ? I cannot find any manuals at all.
 

kb2syd

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I THINK PC/IX will only run on very specific hardware. XT and very compatibles with mono card. I can't seem to verify this anywhere though.
 

Klee

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I guess the next step for me is to try it on my 8086 Deskpro since its supposed to be the most compatible "compatible".
 

Klee

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img0608ta.jpg


This is what it does on the deskpro.

It is slightly different on the deskpro in that the message " booting /unix from partition + with the underscore " is just a box that looks like a curser on the other pc's.

I really could use some docs on this.

I forgot to post this , PC/IX does not like any cpu speed except 4.77 mhz. Turbo mode on the 286 has to be turned off otherwise it gives read errors if you "ls" to display the contents of the boot floppy. The deskpro boots with turbo mode turned off.

So far every mono card displays just fine.
 

tingo

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How does the install work? can you mess around in a shell after installing, but before rebooting? Just to verify that files needed (like /unix) are indeed on the hard drive.
Second thought: have you tried with a partition of 10 MB or smaller?
 

Klee

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How does the install work?

Boot off the floppy and then type "install" , as soon as it drops to a curser hit the spacebar , its seems to be a bit inconsistant you may have to reboot several times to get the installer to work.

Once the installer is up you just run through the options until it says its done and then your back at thr SS shell.

can you mess around in a shell after installing, but before rebooting? Just to verify that files needed (like /unix) are indeed on the hard drive.

I have not been able to so far , after the install your back at the stand alone shell prompt on the floppy with no options to mount the hard drive.

Second thought: have you tried with a partition of 10 MB or smaller?

Yes a 8mb and a 9.5 mb partition.

I really wish someone with a IBM 8088 pc with a min of 256K ram and a 10 mb hard drive would give it a go to see if they have better luck.

I have hit a wall with this , I really think you must have a 10 mb hard drive to get it to work.

I also think the maint disk image has errors on it because if you try to run some of the commands of the floppy it gives read errors.

UNIX on a 8088 pc , or maybe a s-100 system , with 256k ram is just so cool............if it would just work.:huh:
 
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glitch

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I'm planning on trying this out with my true (big) blue IBM 5150 when I get a chance to pick it up -- currently at my parents' place in WV. I'll try with the XTIDE, and a MFM controller if that doesn't work. I'll report back on the install process.
 
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