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New Disk Emulator - "Tiny SCSI Emulator"


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Also more on topic.. the TinySCSI is not a Disk Emulator only... it is a SCSI peripheral emulator, SCSI cabletron Ethernet emulation is in the works among other things... and the author even put Scuzzygraph emulation on the wishlist.

 

Currently the Ethernet drivers crash with it.. but nobody will be playing $100+ on ebay for SCSI Ethernet anymore once this thing is out. And I imagine it may be able to combine multiple devices into one... perhaps with some speed degradation.

 

Also I forgot to mention one thing... the SCSI2SD is fully open source so I'm not sure why anyone is complaining.... oh I'm a wimp if I don't have real spinning rust haha... well SMD isn't hard to solder :p just flux the crap out of it!  In addition if you can't see get a digital scope... here is the source for some reason anyone missed it including gerber files. http://www.codesrc.com/gitweb/index.cgi?p=SCSI2SD.git;a=tree

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Cool thing about this though is the ethernet could be used as a "wireless disk" solution technically. or use an ESP8266 wifi adapter. Keep all your DSK or HFV/HFX files on a file server and mount them on the SCSI adapter as necessary ;)

 

No more SD card, no more anything. just wireless. Use the front panel control to cycle through images and mount them. 

 

Or, if your fancy, write a control panel using special SCSI functions you write to control the device that way. so you can use a control panel or application on the Mac itself to cycle through images and mount them. 

 

The downside of this device though is the PHY IC, and the Teensy. 

 

Sure a Teensy is nice, but guess what. You now have a dependency. So if the Teensy goes out of style/production or is changed, your product is now junk unless you make your own Teensies. Thats the problem with relying on "others" for a design of your own. Bad idea IMHO. 

Edited by techknight
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Cool thing about this though is the ethernet could be used as a "wireless disk" solution technically. or use an ESP8266 wifi adapter. Keep all your DSK or HFV/HFX files on a file server and mount them on the SCSI adapter as necessary ;)

 

Just bear in mind that using an ESP8266 is separate from direct Ethernet or WiFi support... since they are WiFi to Serial converters.... so basically you only have access to a socket that is handled on the ESP instead of actually having control of the TCP stack.. it just means the code for handing that would be more different than not than the existing code to connect to an SPI Ethernet controller most likely.

 

I think he used the PHY IC as a shortcut to getting something working initially he can always enhance the code to add support for other methods of interfacing with the bus later.

Edited by cb88
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You don't buy them. You build them. Hence why the board layout, parts list and necessary code are available for download.

Why is it so hard for mac people to realize that hobby accessories aren't always pre-assembled masterpieces? Get your feet wet and your hands dirty.

Edited by CelGen
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Why is it so hard for mac people to realize that hobby accessories aren't always pre-assembled masterpieces? Get your feet wet and your hands dirty.

You've gotta realize we're Mac people. We just want stuff that works. If we wanted to do everything from scratch we'd be using UNIX boxes.

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You don't buy them. You build them. Hence why the board layout, parts list and necessary code are available for download.

Why is it so hard for mac people to realize that hobby accessories aren't always pre-assembled masterpieces? Get your feet wet and your hands dirty.

Because some people don't have the skills or time. I know I know, everyone here should have these skills if they want to work on compacts but still.

 

Also I didn't see that, I just skimmed through, so this would be a neat project!!

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To be honest, I see the "everybody should have $SKILL if you want to use $VINTAGE_COMPUTER" line parroted all over the place and to be perfectly honest, I think it's toxic, and I think it's straight-up shenanigans.

 

I think it's a great way for somebody who does have the wherewithal to make a few extra bucks on the weekend or the evening to learn how to solder, troubleshoot, etc, and I think that there's a perfectly valid place in the vintage computing scene--any vintage computing scene--for people who want to do vintage gaming or use older software or who need the machine for some kind of oddly specific tool, but don't have the time or the capacity to bust out a multimeter or trace lines through a board, or literally build peripherals, etc.

 

You might find building electronics fun, but I don't, a lot of people don't, and it shouldn't have to be some kind of pre-requisite or status symbol to be able to do it.

 

This is a Mac site, not soldering club.

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To be honest, I see the "everybody should have $SKILL if you want to use $VINTAGE_COMPUTER" line parroted all over the place and to be perfectly honest, I think it's toxic, and I think it's straight-up shenanigans.

 

I think it's a great way for somebody who does have the wherewithal to make a few extra bucks on the weekend or the evening to learn how to solder, troubleshoot, etc, and I think that there's a perfectly valid place in the vintage computing scene--any vintage computing scene--for people who want to do vintage gaming or use older software or who need the machine for some kind of oddly specific tool, but don't have the time or the capacity to bust out a multimeter or trace lines through a board, or literally build peripherals, etc.

 

You might find building electronics fun, but I don't, a lot of people don't, and it shouldn't have to be some kind of pre-requisite or status symbol to be able to do it.

 

This is a Mac site, not soldering club.

Simple soldering is the same as simple troubleshooting, slightly different skillset but needed for old machines you find that don't work. People are not born with those skills, and "making a few bucks on the weekend" remarks sound like you look down on anybody with skills you don't need or assume you can just pay for with a happy meal. People who are afraid to pop off the lid and do simple repairs are just as bad as those who buy an Apple 1 and mount it on the wall and forget about it. This site was mostly for people who used their gear and associated headaches trying to do that.

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To be honest, I see the "everybody should have $SKILL if you want to use $VINTAGE_COMPUTER" line parroted all over the place and to be perfectly honest, I think it's toxic, and I think it's straight-up shenanigans.

 

post-2488-0-81446500-1484745279.gif

 

Everybody grab a broom!

 

post-2488-0-73457200-1484745401.jpg

 

Anyway, back on topic.

 

You don't buy them. You build them. Hence why the board layout, parts list and necessary code are available for download.

Why is it so hard for mac people to realize that hobby accessories aren't always pre-assembled masterpieces? Get your feet wet and your hands dirty.

 

This "holier than thou" type attitude is exactly what turns people off to hobbies like this.  I'm going to declare a smug alert.

 

post-2488-0-73731500-1484746646.gif

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you can own one without any skill, but can be expensive in the long run...

 

And sometimes it's not a matter of skill, it's a matter of choosing your battles. Some of us, possibly most of us, have only so many hours in the day and days in the year we can devote to a hobby. While it may *totally* float some people's boats to find the hardest possible way to come up with a solution to replacing a dead SCSI drive in their Macintosh SE there are plenty of others who'd rather save that time for pursuing some other aspect of the hobby that interests them more, and I see absolutely no reason why we should fling insults or insinuations at those who choose to budget their lives differently.

 

Again, what's really stupid about this is we're not even comparing apples and oranges here. The SCSI2SD is essentially a mature product at this point; it's about as cheap as such a thing can reasonably cost, it's available fully assembled, and it's about as plug-and-play as you can reasonably expect. The device under discussion here is still basically in the "research project" stage, where SCSI2SD was *some years ago*, and isn't even *remotely* finished nor "feature complete", whatever "feature complete" might happen to mean for something that is *intended* to be a veritable Tinkertoy set for emulating SCSI devices. If all you want is a working, reliable SCSI storage device replacement it's very much NOT what you should be buying right now. That is not a strike against it, it's simply a reflection of the state of the project. When it's "done" it might be a better storage device than SCSI2SD is (on top of everything else it's supposed to do), it might not be but makes up for it through being more flexible, whatever, who knows. Point is there's absolutely no reason why these two things can't coexist and be judged on their own merits without infantile name calling.

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My apologies in advance, this post is going to be a little poorly structured because I jumped around while writing it and I'm on a morning time crunch to leave the house and go to work:

 

The whole concept of the original post is smug. It presumes you have the skills, time, equipment, and wherewithal to build the Tiny SCSI Emulator. (And that somehow for those reasons alone, it's better than the SCSI2SD.)

 

I think there are plenty of situations where that's not worthwhile. People for whom it's literally less expensive to buy a SCSI2SD than buy start-up materials, spend some time learning, and then build a TSE.

 

Hell, for some people, it's not even a money thing. Between my chronic illness and my job, I don't really have the physical wherewithal or the motivation to "do things" in my off time. I'm not living a particularly lavish lifestyle (in my 1200sf with my new housemate). But I can set aside a little bit of money to build a "send off to be recapped" fund (since that is acknowledged the most common needed repair for '90s modular Macs, which is what I have) and to save for a scsi2sd and perhaps a floppyemu. These aren't things I "need" and I can make do without them (my systems have fortunately been very well cared for their entire lives), and yes, it's physically possible for me to learn soldering and build a TSE or recap my Macs, but that's not why I came here fifteen years ago (actually it might be sixteen now) and it's not something I personally find fun.

 

And yes, troubleshooting is a different skill, I literally do tech support for a living, so I'm aware of that. But how frequent are hardware failures here? Especially board-level troubleshooting? Something like 90% of the troubleshooting (dead PSU, floppy disk drive needs maintenance or replacement, hard disk needs maintenance, PRAM battery is dead) that occurs here is both stuff that we did fifteen years ago, before to my knowledge literally anybody had recapped any Macs, and is all stuff that's covered in the manuals that came with these old machines.

 

So I don't think it's smug to say that I don't think everybody should have to learn soldering to do recaps or build simple peripherals in order to even be here on this site, and I don't think it's smug to suggest that in a friendly community with a peer-to-peer marketplace, the people who do can't both give back and earn an extra few dollars. I think that as a site, we should be able to accomodate and maybe even encourage as normal and reasonable both ways, and assist people moving from one situation to another.

 

But that's not the tone I see so often. The tone I see so often is that if you're not a pro at soldering you shouldn't bother with vintage computers at all, and I consider that to be a shame, because that attitude makes people who are less physically or technically inclined miss out on a lot of fun and history and productivity. That's not new though, and it's not something that'll change overnight. It is something we can talk about and frame in a way that hopefully incentivizes us to try to make it easier for newcomers.

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I don't know what it's called, but I know the ThinkPad 360C used it.

 

 

The drive itself is probably IDE, but it's encased in this sealed shell with a proprietary IBM connector.

 

The 700 series also has this same connector - but it is IDE. Its the damn connector that is Proprietary. You can break that case open and swap the drive, as that connector has a ribbon that goes to the hard drive's IDE Port; it is not part of the hard drive as he stated. I've taken many of these apart to know this. Some are metal and others are plastic; his looks like one of the plastic ones.

 

I do not know of any 1990s generation of the ThinkPad that has a SCSI hard drive in it. There might be one or two but I never seen it myself, and I have a collection of 500 - 700 ThinkPads parallel to my PowerBook Collection. And many of the ThinkPads I put in a CF with a CF-2-IDE adapter in them because their IDE hard drives died a long time ago.

 

But for PowerBooks, with the right SCSI adapter this device would be great.

Edited by Elfen
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My apologies in advance, this post is going to be a little poorly structured because I jumped around while writing it and I'm on a morning time crunch to leave the house and go to work:

 

The whole concept of the original post is smug. It presumes you have the skills, time, equipment, and wherewithal to build the Tiny SCSI Emulator. (And that somehow for those reasons alone, it's better than the SCSI2SD.)

 

I think there are plenty of situations where that's not worthwhile. People for whom it's literally less expensive to buy a SCSI2SD than buy start-up materials, spend some time learning, and then build a TSE.

 

Hell, for some people, it's not even a money thing. Between my chronic illness and my job, I don't really have the physical wherewithal or the motivation to "do things" in my off time. I'm not living a particularly lavish lifestyle (in my 1200sf with my new housemate). But I can set aside a little bit of money to build a "send off to be recapped" fund (since that is acknowledged the most common needed repair for '90s modular Macs, which is what I have) and to save for a scsi2sd and perhaps a floppyemu. These aren't things I "need" and I can make do without them (my systems have fortunately been very well cared for their entire lives), and yes, it's physically possible for me to learn soldering and build a TSE or recap my Macs, but that's not why I came here fifteen years ago (actually it might be sixteen now) and it's not something I personally find fun.

 

And yes, troubleshooting is a different skill, I literally do tech support for a living, so I'm aware of that. But how frequent are hardware failures here? Especially board-level troubleshooting? Something like 90% of the troubleshooting (dead PSU, floppy disk drive needs maintenance or replacement, hard disk needs maintenance, PRAM battery is dead) that occurs here is both stuff that we did fifteen years ago, before to my knowledge literally anybody had recapped any Macs, and is all stuff that's covered in the manuals that came with these old machines.

 

So I don't think it's smug to say that I don't think everybody should have to learn soldering to do recaps or build simple peripherals in order to even be here on this site, and I don't think it's smug to suggest that in a friendly community with a peer-to-peer marketplace, the people who do can't both give back and earn an extra few dollars. I think that as a site, we should be able to accomodate and maybe even encourage as normal and reasonable both ways, and assist people moving from one situation to another.

 

But that's not the tone I see so often. The tone I see so often is that if you're not a pro at soldering you shouldn't bother with vintage computers at all, and I consider that to be a shame, because that attitude makes people who are less physically or technically inclined miss out on a lot of fun and history and productivity. That's not new though, and it's not something that'll change overnight. It is something we can talk about and frame in a way that hopefully incentivizes us to try to make it easier for newcomers.

 

I could not agree with you any more. Just because one does not have racing skills when we get behind the wheel and drive our cars does not make us bad drivers, even professional drivers as in cab/taxi, trucks and emergency services driving.

 

People do not need to know how to solder to diagnose their machines. They can figure out what is wrong with it and then if it needs soldering, get someone to do the job for you. At least you know what needs to be done.

 

I'm not the "best" or "most informed" member of the forum but I know what I know through experience and learn everyday something new. So let me state A bit of off-topicness which does connect to this discussion.

 

2015 I bought a couple of Raspberry Pi Model Bs from ebay because the sellers said that they were broken. I spent like $5 for each of them. 2 of them (from the same seller) had crushed ports and shorted out ports. I asked to what happened to do this but the seller would not budge in giving me the story. The other the seller admits to sending 12V into the GPIO to power up the .Raspberry Pi for some robotics project and believes that he fried it to death. A Fourth one had its SD Card holder broken and could not hold the SD card in place. The Seller says that somebody tripped over its power cable and sent the unit flying until it crashed into a wall. He did add that it does boot from the SD Card if you use a tiny wood clamp t hold the SD card in place in the broken SD Card Slot.

 

I diagnosed the problem with the 3 R-Pi's; with the one with the crushed ports had their pins shorting against the case. Cutting the wires to eliminate the short fixed it, but it now has no ports. The one with the broken SD Card holder worked as he describe with a tiny wood clamp holding the SD card in place. The fried one was tricky. It did boot up if one used a 5V 2A power adapter, but  checking the voltages they were found to be off the scale. The 5V line was all over the place from 4.1V to 6V and was not steady. The 3.3 line read zero. I looked them over with a magnifying glass and found 3.3V regulator to be cracked, and the 5V regulator to have a bulge in it.

 

Luck for me I can solder. Because I submitted these findings to the R-Pi forum and I was basically told by everyone (including the admins) to throw them away and buy new ones. For me the hard part was finding the parts.  Mouser had the regulators, and I found the SD Card Slot Holder, compatible USB Ports and a compatible Ethernet port for the RPi's on ebay, though they were not cheap.

 

It took a long time, because they used a high temp non-Lead solder which was difficult to remove. But in replacing the broken parts, I got 4 working R-Pis that the original owners considered as dead. Funny - the one with the replaced ports, that model uses Black USB Ports, and I used White UBS Ports, making these two the only R-Pis of this model to have White Ports! Similarly, the broken SD Card was replaced too and it too works like it should. The hardest was the regulars replacement, as those are some damn tiny connections! But now it can now boot up and run with a 5V 1.5A power adapter and the voltages are rock steady!

 

Then I reported back to the R-Pi and posted up my repairs. I dd not believe that many were bothered and even angered that someone would take their time to fix a broken R-Pi. Even the Admins stated, 'This is great that you fixed them but we do not recommend anyone into fixing their R-Pi's. They are cheap enough for one to buy a new one in case they accidentally kill their old one." There were a few members that were ecstatic in what I did but the majority of the group was totally against it. (WHY?!!)

 

What does this have to do with Macs? Like you stated, one does not need to know how to solder to fix their machines. But if they diagnose their machines that it does need some solder work on it, they are ahead of the game in knowing what needs to be done and send it out to get that part done for them. You can even buy the replacement parts that needs to be soldered and send out the board with the parts. Soldering is a nice skill to have but it is not a life & death skill to have.

Edited by Elfen
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This "holier than thou" type attitude is exactly what turns people off to hobbies like this.  I'm going to declare a smug alert.

 

attachicon.gifsmug alert.gif

 

This is encouragement. This is a challenge.

This is someone telling you to try something extremely cool that does not require expensive tools and gives skills you can use outside of a computing hobby.

If you want to say it's smug, sure but that's a pretty damn lame reason to be smug. If this was welding or brazing that would be different but this is literally using a hot piece of metal to melt lead and join bits of copper and wire together.

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I have friends that have the same attitude about taking your car to the mechanic. I used to work on my own cars and have done everything from oil changes to rebuilding engines. About 3 years ago I decided I was tried of spending my free time working on my car. It is so nice just to drop my car off and then come back the next day and my car is fixed. I hate spending my Saturday outside in the heat all pissed off because the part I need to remove is being contrary.

 

It is the same thing here. I know how to solder, but it can be rather frustrating to troubleshoot the thing and find the bad solder joint or the component you installed backwards. Sometimes I'd rather spend the day enjoying the thing, that all frustrated in putting it together.

 

It is a good option that people can put it together them selves if they want, but there is nothing wrong with someone not wanting to do that.

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