Your First Computer

VP9KS

Well-Known Member
Ok, What was your first Personal Computer?

Mine was a Timex-Sinclair ZX81. It had a thin film keyboard, no storage of any kind, and a WHOPPING 1k of ram! The clock speed was 1MHZ!o_O:D:D
 
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wizardfromoz

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You've got me hands down on that one, Paul. :)

Mine was an 80286 (286-AT) with a 40MB HDD, 1MB RAM, 12MHz refresh on the clock.

2 floppy drive bays, one for 3.5 inch, the other for 5.25 inch. Now those were floppies!

Windows 3.1 was the OS

Wiz
 
Wow, I thought I was old school. Try a TRS-80 Model 1 with a cassette player. Now you know I did move up in the world to a TRS-80 Model 3 with two disk drives 5.25. Then I found out at work no one used the TRS-80. So my next purchase was a third party PC 80286 with dual 5.25 drives. Harddrives did not come out until a year or two later (that I could afford $600.oo for 40 gig). Those were the days of DOS. Windows didn't come along until a couple years later and I have cried every since.
 

poorguy

Well-Known Member
My first computer was a Compaq desktop with a Pentium III processor and 512 mb of memory and a 20 gb hard drive running Windows 98.

I installed a 40 gb hard drive and installed Windows XP and used it for a few years with 512 mb of memory with no complaints.

The good old days. :)
 
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oldrocker99

New Member
A VIC-20 was my first, with 7K free RAM. Then I got a C=64, and 3 years later an Amiga 1000. I was one of the first people in my county to use the Amiga, and one of the last to still use it.

Looking back at the Amiga FS, it was at least inspired by UNIX.
 

VP9KS

Well-Known Member
The Amiga was an amazing machine. I had the c64 much later. I also had the maintenance manual for it. It was a very tightly timed little package as I recall.

During that period, I was maintaining mini computers like the AN/UYK-20, AN/UYK-44, AN/UYK-7 variants, and also mainframes like the VAX11-780. Kinda gave me some insight into the structure of the PCs. :rolleyes::rolleyes:

Happy Trails
Paul
 

wizardfromoz

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VP9KS

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I had (still have) a SOL-20 from Processor Technology. You can see it here.
Ya Mon, that is old school. I moonlighted for Heathkit, as a bench tech at the Virginia Beach store (HEC44) back in the day. Got a chance to work one H89 (S-100 bus if memory serves me correctly) whos owner said that his cat liked to sleep on top of it while he was using it. Like sleeping on a warm car hood, I guess. Then, one day, the cat lost bladder control while asleep. That one was not much fun to restore, don't ya know.o_O What a mess!! AND STINK!!!
 
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VP9KS

Well-Known Member
Now those were floppies!
It seems that I should have a couple 8 inch winchester drives around here, somewhere, and a Fabritech MLA5 core memory module too. They make dandy door stops nowadays. :D:D I may have lost track of just where they are, or I may have lost them altogether. HMMMMM
 

VP9KS

Well-Known Member
You've got me hands down on that one, Paul. :)

Mine was an 80286 (286-AT) with a 40MB HDD, 1MB RAM, 12MHz refresh on the clock.

2 floppy drive bays, one for 3.5 inch, the other for 5.25 inch. Now those were floppies!

Windows 3.1 was the OS

Wiz
Did you go for the 1mb of ram, or just 640k?:D
 

HuMJohn

Member
The SOL-20 is an S-100 Bus 8080 machine. I put a full 64K or RAM into her, as I was doing ASSY Lang programming on her, and even had a few games;, Chess, Pong, etc.
Don't want to fire it up, today, unless I change out all the electrolytic capacitors. Don't want to turn the machine into a lump of ash.
 

wizardfromoz

Super Moderator
Staff member
Gold Supporter
Did you go for the 1mb of ram, or just 640k?:D
Maxed out everything possible :)

Used a combination of device loading in autoexec.bat and config.sys to access upper and high memory, UMBs &c. Also a DOS utility called Memmaker to optimise memory configuration. And the best was a little known DOS command "setver" - which could set the version of software to a version that was compatible to my Windows.

Had all sorts of friends look at it and say "inconceivable!" (Reference to The Princess Bride)

:D

Wiz

BTW and of course Doublespace came along and effectively increased my capacity by about 75%.
 

VP9KS

Well-Known Member
Boy, that brings back some memories! Rewriting the config.sys and autoexec.bat files, from scratch, every time you tried to add a new piece of hardware. Getting the interrupts and dma channels configured again and again so that everyone would play nicely in that 640k sand box! Oh, What fun it was! And very educational (Interpretation: frustrating as hell!) too:D:D:D. Those were the days, my friend!o_O
 

VP9KS

Well-Known Member
The SOL-20 is an S-100 Bus 8080 machine. I put a full 64K or RAM into her, as I was doing ASSY Lang programming on her, and even had a few games;, Chess, Pong, etc.
Don't want to fire it up, today, unless I change out all the electrolytic capacitors. Don't want to turn the machine into a lump of ash.
A wise choice, mate!
 

VP9KS

Well-Known Member
sed a combination of device loading in autoexec.bat and config.sys to access upper and high memory
Another option was to use the upper memory as a ram disk. I did that with the old Tandy 1400FD. It had 768k of ram, and I used the upper 128k as a ram disk. It was much faster than using a floppy drive. It really took flight! I also snatch the cpu out of it's socket, and installed a NEC V20. 3% faster, and pin compatable. What fun it was souping up machines back then. (Yesterday, right?):D:p
 

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