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QuantumLink RELOADED?

CanadaPhil

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Is anyone using this?.... And how?

Would it be possible to make a direct online connection with a vintage 64 and a product like the 64Nic, or is a separate PC always required in the mix?

PS: I know it is still buggy and in testing and that you can access it via VICE. I am not interested in doing that.
 
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KC9UDX

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I'd like to. I have no desire to connect with an intermediate PC, though, so I hadn't thought about how to do it. I thought about a phone line simulator. I might be able to justify a PC if I did that.

I too, have no desire to use an emulator. I wanted to connect to Q-Link when I bought my first C64, but couldn't afford a modem!
 

CanadaPhil

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I used it for a few years back in the day. There was a time when Qlink supplied brand new Commodore modems shipped for FREE as long as you committed to a minimum term. It was only the 300 baud model, but that is how I got in.

I see (if I understand correctly) that you CAN use a vintage 64 with an actual Qlink 5.25 floppy? But that you connect via a null modem/user port arrangement to a PC that acts as the online bridge.
 

KC9UDX

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I used it for a few years back in the day. There was a time when Qlink supplied brand new Commodore modems shipped for FREE as long as you committed to a minimum term. It was only the 300 baud model, but that is how I got in.

I couldn't afford that either. I spent everything I had buying a C64 and a black and white TV as a monitor!
 

CanadaPhil

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Thanks for that!

Ok, so it should be possible to connect directly WITHOUT a PC if you have the right setup then?

I believe people can even TWEET via Vintage Commodores with things like the 64Nic and other ethernet interfaces, so why not QLink.

Qlink seems like it could be an amazing way to revive a retro Commodore community, but Im not sure what the intention of going to this effort (since 2005!??) has been if NOBODY knows about it? It has been "promoted" very poorly in my opinion.

How many users are actually logging in... A few dozen?
 

KC9UDX

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It must be promoted pretty well. I don't know who nobody is, but I wasn't paying attention and I knew about it.
 

CanadaPhil

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For me it was purely by chance after a Google search (for something else) that lead indirectly to a page that had me scratch my head.

Im sure Warner Bros. & the actor Hugo Weaving would not appreciate their images from The Matrix being used on that page I found.
(Im guessing neither authorized it)

Here...

http://orrtech.us/qlink/
 

azog

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The project has been around for some time, as you can see in my post above, since at least 2011. Back then, I had communicated with ShadowM, at http://www.lyonlabs.org/commodore/qlink/ who seemed to be part of the original team working on this. I don't know/can't remember what his real name is.

Besides a brief mention last month about the possibility of Habitat getting reverse-engineered, I haven't looked at the project lately to see what the status is. But back when I first contacted him, it seemed like there were not a lot of people interested in working on the project. When I spoke with him, he was apparently recovering from a health issue, so I didn't want to deluge him with e-mail. Things are as they are, I didn't follow-up.

I honestly don't know what the "official" status of the project, if he still runs it, or has moved on. The web page I posted in my first paragraph was updated within the past month, so he still seems to be active to some degree.
 

MikeS

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Thanks for that!

Ok, so it should be possible to connect directly WITHOUT a PC if you have the right setup then?
Why so determined to not use a PC? It's just an RS-232<>Ethernet bridge and you could probably find an old laptop with a broken screen for free; it would be the equivalent of the Lantronix 'modem', only cheaper and a little larger...
 

CanadaPhil

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Why so determined to not use a PC? It's just an RS-232<>Ethernet bridge and you could probably find an old laptop with a broken screen for free; it would be the equivalent of the Lantronix 'modem', only cheaper and a little larger...

My feelings are why bother? If you were required to use a PC in the mix, then why not just use VICE?... Or forget about it altogether since there are a ton of MODERN apps for social use.

But, if one could accomplish this all by simply plugging in a NIC adapter and flicking the power toggle switch on a 64 or 128 thats completely different as it would recreating a nostalgic experience and give someone a REAL reason to fire up a 64 on an almost daily basis.

But it sounds like this thing is basically dead in the water in any event.
 

geoffm3

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Well, I think the point is here is more to use the front end and a real Commodore itself rather than how you're connecting with it. In that respect I think they managed admirably.
 

MikeS

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Well, I think the point is here is more to use the front end and a real Commodore itself rather than how you're connecting with it. In that respect I think they managed admirably.
Exactly. If the client demands an RS-232 connection instead of a NIC as the Qlink client apparently does, then you obviously need an RS-232 to Ethernet 'modem' of some sort (as you would if you're running an Internet connected BBS on a C64); what's the difference whether you use a (sometimes expensive) 'modem' like the Lantronix or an old laptop configured to boot up into bridge mode. Using a 'real' C64 connected to the Internet is not at all the same as using Vice, regardless of what you use to connect.

Just a different way of thinking about a PC, not as a PC but as a programmable black box that can be all sorts of converters, I/O devices, custom keyboard etc. etc.. Folks are using Raspberry Pis for all sorts of trivial apps; what's the difference? Would that be OK? I see that Phil is suggesting using a PC (Pi) as a display controller in another thread...
 
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geoffm3

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I suppose if you wanted to be really nit-picky about the whole thing, then you should have:

A. A Commodore with a 1660 or 1670 or equivalent connected to,
B. A POTS line simulator connected to,
C. A PC with a modem running,
D. A Telenet/Sprintnet, or Tymnet simulator which connects to,
E. A telnet or raw TCP socket to the QuantumLink server emulator...
 

MikeS

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I suppose if you wanted to be really nit-picky about the whole thing, then you should have:

A. A Commodore with a 1660 or 1670 or equivalent connected to,
B. A POTS line simulator connected to,
C. A PC with a modem running,
D. A Telenet/Sprintnet, or Tymnet simulator which connects to,
E. A telnet or raw TCP socket to the QuantumLink server emulator...
Sounds a little excessive; no need for modems or a POTS connection, just an RS232 adapter and some bridge software or hardware. They usually present a standard modem interface complete with AT dial and status commands so the computer thinks it's talking to a POTS modem but it's actually Telnetting to a remote system over the Internet (which probably does the same thing in reverse).

No different from the old RS232-Modem-POTS-Modem-RS232 connections except that POTS is replaced by Internet, and usually completely transparent to the computers at each end; that's how some folks connect their C64 to the various Commodore BBSs out there.
 

MikeS

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I used a Lantronix Serial-Ethernet adapter in Modem Mode to connect to Q-Link. It's definitely the easiest solution.

Heather
+1 !

Great devices for connecting any RS-232 capable system to/over the Internet, especially among the CP/M crowd; I've used them to let people Telnet into my S100 Cromemco system, let two R-S M100s talk to each other, even logged into a CP/M system in Australia from an M100 in Toronto.

You can usually find a used one for less than the price of a Pi, and they're compact, commercially packaged and documented, and very flexible configuration-wise.

http://www.ebay.ca/itm/Lantronix-UD...145?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1e934cfd09

But if you've already got (or are getting) a Pi, why not.
 

geoffm3

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Sounds a little excessive; no need for modems or a POTS connection, just an RS232 adapter and some bridge software or hardware. They usually present a standard modem interface complete with AT dial and status commands so the computer thinks it's talking to a POTS modem but it's actually Telnetting to a remote system over the Internet (which probably does the same thing in reverse).

No different from the old RS232-Modem-POTS-Modem-RS232 connections except that POTS is replaced by Internet, and usually completely transparent to the computers at each end; that's how some folks connect their C64 to the various Commodore BBSs out there.


Well, if you're wanting a more "authentic" solution, then mine would be more accurate. ;)
 
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