Obsolete media (was: Whats the screwiest thing you collect?)

From: Richard Erlacher <edick_at_idcomm.com>
Date: Sun Nov 28 13:57:08 1999

Some years back, the GOV switched from 9-track to 8mm, using the Exabyte
8200 as its standard. This was because you could hold what was formerly
stored on a truckload of 9-track tape on a single cartridge which would fit
in your pocket.

Since the GOV also loved DEC, I'd be very surprised to learn that there's no
practical implementation available of the EXB8200 on a DEC machine. These
drives are simple SCSI-1 and should work like any other tape drive. There
are probably some special hoops, DEC-isms, you have to jump through in order
to get it all to work, but I'll bet it's been done.

Those 8mm cartridges, BTW, cost less than almost any other medium. There
are larger-capacity drives, e.g. Exabyte 8205, 8500, 8500C, 8505, all of
which are SCSI-II, which have faster transfer rates and, in the case of th
8505xl, 8505, and 8500C, not to mention the libraries which host one or more
of these drives, they support hardware compression as well.


-----Original Message-----
From: Megan <mbg_at_world.std.com>
To: Discussion re-collecting of classic computers
Date: Sunday, November 28, 1999 12:28 PM
Subject: Re: Obsolete media (was: Whats the screwiest thing you collect?)

>>IMHO, it makes little sense to retain media for washing-machine-sized
>>disk drives if you don't retain the drives and maintain them in order to
>>retain the value of the media. Hindsight is always 20/20, but wouldn't
>>it make sense to archive data/software on an archival medium, likely, we
>>hope, to remain useable over time, rather than to store it on what's
>>intended for on-line storage, and is likely to become obsolete within a
>>couple of years of when it was developed?
>Unless there is no equivalent... I've got the exact problem with the
>DECsystem-10 I got earlier this year... it came with two RP06 drives.
>They are 3-phase drives. We don't yet have three phase power (or a
>close approximation of it), so cannot run the drives. Without the
>drives, we cannot even load the microcode for the machine, so it is
>a very large paper-weight.
>I've been looking of a non-three-phase replacement for the drives, but
>we still would need three-phase to get the data off the disks I have.
>We have, however, been getting all the data off the tapes so as not
>to lose it.
>It would be great if there was a massbus interface for a more recent
>tape drive, and the same for a disk... it would be neat to be able to
>have a DAT tape acting like a TU77 or something supported by the machine,
>and a couple of SCSI or even IDE disks acting as RM03 or RP06 disks...
>(anyone know of any? Anyone up for the challenge of designing one?)
> Megan Gentry
> Former RT-11 Developer
>| Megan Gentry, EMT/B, PP-ASEL | Internet (work): gentry!zk3.dec.com |
>| Unix Support Engineering Group | (home): mbg!world.std.com |
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Received on Sun Nov 28 1999 - 13:57:08 GMT

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