Author Archives: dillera

NAS Near Death Experience – PX4-300r

 I have a few different NAS in my home network, each used for different things. Having multiple ones also ensures when I have a problem I won’t lose all my files in one go. Recently I was bit by a issue updating the firmware in my EMC NAS. I was able to recover and not…

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SGI Land

So I’ve been very busy this year working, collecting and playing with my growing collection of SGI systems. My most interesting one to date is the Power ChallengeL that I obtained from an associate who found it destined for the trash at an NYC University.   Picking up the Challenge from NYC. It was suprising…

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Setting the date in ULTRIX

Ultrix 4.5 has a Y2k problem- the date command cannot set any date with 00 as the year. However, ULTRIX itself has no problem using dates past 2000, you just have to trick it to set the date by jumping to the last second of each year, letting it roll over the year then doing…

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USB 3 for your MacPro 5,1

Now that my Mac is back I wanted to address another issue- lack of USB 3.1 and also general lack of USB. I’ve found that i’m using most of the available USB ports (many for multiple serial interfaces I use to connect to my SGI consoles). I also have a external drive that is USB…

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MacPro 5,1 Firmware Problems

Recently my MacPro 5,1 (still running High Sierra) starting crashing on an OSX Update of some kind. It started mid-April and I’m not sure which one it was, but the Mac wouldn’t boot as it ended up in the crash screen for the installer with some sort of error on finding a file that wasn’t…

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Dive into IRIX

I’ve been diving into IRIX lately, setting up both 5.3 on my Personal Iris and 6.5.22 on my Indigo. It’s been interesting unlearning 20 years of Linuxisms and embracing the IRIX. There is an interesting project going on called irisware which aims to resurrect a modern pool of open-source software for IRIX. Which is not…

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Sparcbook 3

The Tadpole Sparcbook3 was dug up out of storage in time to submit it for the Reddit Portable Battlestation contest.  This one came from a Craigslist buy at least a decade ago, and I promptly just stuck the whole box in storage. It came with a couple of CDROMS, batteries and accessories (scsi cable, 2…

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SGI Indigo Elan

I’m in the middle of this one, but it’s booting from the SCSI2SD v6 and a totally minimal install of Irix is installed. More to come.   It’s a eBay surprise as it was listed as a R3K Indigo, but turned out to be a R4k with Elan Graphics installed. Not bad.      …

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RISC Workstations of the 1990s

Inspired by the amazing system collection and blog of Sophie Haskins aka cronmom I’ve been trying to figure out what workstations I have (and what I want) from the classic RISC workstation era. I have a couple of them from the Nextslab all the way to the svelte DEC Alpha XP1000. My recently acquired SGI…

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1088XEL The Missing Manual

I’ve been diving deeper into the 1088XEL and the U1MB Firmware that drives all it’s pieces and it’s a fascinating system. It’s primarily three parts: the 1088 itself, which collects all the new hardware bits (CF drives, PS/2 keyboard, DVI out, stereo sound) into one platform, the U1MB BIOS which drives, configures and boots the…

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Atari 1088XEL

The Atari 1088XEL is an amazing beast which truly brings your Atari 8bit into the modern world. Using the actual, original 8bit chips it provides a modern hardware platform to not only run Atari without emulation but connect and enjoy modern peripherals and upgrades which can transform the 8bit use into a entirely different experience…

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Syncing Apple Archaeology

The first post to my Syncing Apple blog was 14 years ago. It was about my G5 desktop rebooting on me. Not incredibly long ago for many people, but looking back at many of my postings the time from 2004-2010 was filled with many exciting advances in both OS and device introductions. A lot happened…

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GamePad fail on MacOS

Update: May 2nd – I’m happy to say that a super cheap pair (you get two) of USB gamepads from Amazon did the trick. $ ./start-old.sh DonkeyKong.v2.atr Using Atari800 config file: atari800-80.cfg Created by Atari 800 Emulator, Version 3.1.0 joystick 0 found! joystick 1 not found Now I can enjoy games with sound and joystick…

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Atari 8bit on OSX

atari800 – emulator of Atari 8-bit computers and the 5200 console That’s the tag line for the man page for the atari800 emulator. It’s maintained by a group of contributors on Github – specifically Mark Grebe has done the work for OSX. The emulator is based on the seminal work done by David Firth in…

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Amiga Uplift 1.1 – HC508 Case

A quick update- I found a great case on Ebay from finchball. The original creators of the HC508 don’t yet have one available so I purchased this one. It fits perfectly and makes the HC508 look much nicer on the side of the A500. The construction is good, with 4 screws on the bottom holding…

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Amiga Uplift Part 1: Accelerator

Looking around today in 2018 there are many choices for accelerating your Amiga 500. At one point in the far past the A500 was my primary computer and I had purchased the GVP A530 in order to run programs like NewTek’s Lightwave on the A500. The A530 was marvelous piece of kit for the Amiga…

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Macbook Air 11 – The Last Ones

I’ve had a MBA 11″ since 2011 (MacBookAir4,1) and I’ve never been able to find any other laptop that had such an unbeatable combination of size, speed, flexibility, and utility. My 11 has been amazing and my go-to mac (I also have a 13 and 15 MBPs between work and home) for most things, but…

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WOMBAT

I spent some good money and time getting my SE/30 uplifted and retrofitted for modern use. Both the motherboard, analog board and power-supply have been recapped, it has 32M RAM installed and a SCSI to CF adapter to ensure quiet operation and no surprise disk failures. The one failure I encountered was the keyboard and…

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Lost and Found Again: VT102

No good retro setup involving Unix can be legit without one. I had actually found a new-in-the-box VT102 once back in the 90s in Maryland at some recycling center. I used it for years but lost in moves around MD NJ and PA. I’ve been watching eBay for years trying to justify getting one again…

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