DEC RK07 drive interface specs wanted

From: Scott Stevens <>
Date: Tue May 18 18:36:39 2004

On Tue, 18 May 2004 07:37:49 -0700 (PDT)
Vintage Computer Festival <> wrote:

> On Tue, 18 May 2004, Paul Koning wrote:
> > >>>>> "Ashley" == Ashley Carder <> writes:
> >
> > Ashley> Where are guys like this now? Do any of them participate
> > in Ashley> "classic computer" activities, or have they moved on to
> > other Ashley> things, such as fishing or woodworking? The
> > hobbyists sure Ashley> could use guys like this from time to time,
> > I would think.
> >
> > >> ...
> > >> I remember our first PDP11 field service tech (circa 1973), a
> > >> gentleman named Jim Newport. His skills were amazing.
> >
> > I suspect Jim is retired now ... as would be most of his generation.
> >
> > Later on, field service was more of a boardswap exercise, which
> > means you're less likely to see this level of skill.
> > Unfortunately...
> And it must also be remembered that these folks did this when it was
> economically feasible to spend a day or two tracking down and
> repairing a problem. Business is time, and time is money, so as
> technology evolved and came down in price, it became more practical to
> just swap boards (both for the user and the supplier).
> Sometimes we lose a sense of the more pragmatic aspects of tech work.
> If your business is halted because a computer system is down, would
> you rather your tech take a few hours or a day or two to track down
> and fix a problem, or would you rather they swap a few boards in an
> hour or so until they find the problem?

It is also worth noting that often times the 'real' tech people aren't
deployed in the field. I've done component level troubleshooting work
in the past at the shops where the pulled cards are shipped. It often
isn't efficient for the field staff to do that sort of troubleshooting.
Repair and testing of the pulled boards DOES happen, in facilities where
the equipment, expertise, and documents are more complete.

Sadly, this isn't always the case anymore, but generally up until the
recent past it has been. Certainly in the case of higher-quality
equipment from the likes of DEC, IBM, etc., but there's a lot of
throw-away junk getting deployed these days.
Received on Tue May 18 2004 - 18:36:39 BST

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