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Is Bob Puffs' BBS Program Lost Forever?

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I spoke with Bob Puff at CSS who told me the hard drive that contained the Puff Board and all the code died. He no longer has any material related to that. Being a MyDos person I always wanted to run a BBS based on it, thus why I asked Bob about it. He has no contact info for anyone else that ran the board at the time. The only one other board that ran it that I can remember was the Moose board in New York. Anyone else here know of someone? I'm sure Bob would love to hear from them as well. It's a shame when great programs get lost thru Bit Rot.

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Sadly that could be the fate of lots of software as people pass, retire or get tired of the hobby.  I would love to work with anyone who has a large collection get it digitized and pushed up to Internet Archive.  In my youth, I knew a BBS operator who lived in Denver (and if you're old enough, you likely do too - if he's not reading this message himself!) and he had the largest collection of Atari 8-Bit floppies which I think was topping out around 1700 last I knew in 1990-91.  And Denver had a fair amount of Atari people putting out software.  There were versions of AMIS called TODAMIS (for Trent Dudley of AMODEM fame) that various operators ran.  One of the boards even did a "Risk/Conquest" online "door" where a group of users calling the board could take turns making moves and playing online "Risk".  I remember being very, very impressed by the result being one of the first players of it on his system. 

 

Probably a thing to ensure in your estate planning is whom to contact regarding your horde... er collection so that they can remove that burden from your family as having visiting so many estate sales, you really feel for the people having to close out anyone's estate.  But one cannot take it with them so best to make sure it gets passed forward and not end up in a landfill never to be seen again in this century at least.

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This is something I constantly champion, if you have a collection, make sure it goes somewhere please, sure the logistics may be hard but in this day and age a simple request left to come on a place like this and offer the collection should be easily do-able and a interested party found.

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Details, please. I own no CSS products and am unfamiliar both with the Puff Board (even with a quick review of some old threads) and never ran a BBS. What makes his BBS program so prized?

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Everything that Bob Puff & CSS created were stellar products, so the BBS software must have been awesome too, right? :)

 

I don't believe it was ever sold, which of course adds rarity and allure. It also supported the MUX to allow a multi-line BBS with multiple Atari computers with a shared hard drive, with (I think?) ability chat between lines too. Anyone who had it was probably as a result of a personal request. It only ran on two BBS's that I knew of at the time - CSS's own BBS, as well as "The Moose", both in New York state.

 

Take a look through this previous thread, looks like @Alfred used to run a copy, and recovered quite a bit:

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Nezgar, when ended up with all those BBS Express's did they get archived??  Can those be run?? either with serial numbers hacked etc?? 

 

Just asking.. I am playing with BBS software right now.. so at the moment kind of my thing.

 

That was a great thread.. Hope that software was archived.

 

James

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I got the BBS Pro! package 472 and my friend has 471 it was not version 4.0 but 5.0 later when program was not availble anymore, it has evolved in  tcpip express

 

 

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yea... stuff like this makes me salivate.. back in the day i collected bbs software as well as h/p software and I never stumbled across puffboard.. heard about it but never saw it.

 

hopefully if people keep the topic alive it will find its way out of hiding... 

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On 8/29/2019 at 6:19 AM, Mclaneinc said:

This is something I constantly champion, if you have a collection, make sure it goes somewhere please, sure the logistics may be hard but in this day and age a simple request left to come on a place like this and offer the collection should be easily do-able and a interested party found.

I have a kryoflux setup and am happy to dump anyone's collection if they want to send it to me. If it is a matter of cost of postage, let me know and I can help there too.

If you have something that hasn't been dumped. PM me. I'd love to help!

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On 8/29/2019 at 4:35 AM, jfalcon said:

There were versions of AMIS called TODAMIS (for Trent Dudley of AMODEM fame) that various operators ran.

I think I have a copy of TODAMIS.  Is this already available for download on the web?  If not, I can share what I have.

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please share! I would like to see that. As far as I am aware (and I have been looking) it is not.

 

James

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Just putting it in this thread, it is elsewhere on AA.. but copies of the PUffBoard were found. 

 

James

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Oh, that's great, glad it was found. I was a freshman in high school when I started calling The Moose BBS. There were a few of them in Rochester that ran Bob Puff's BBS software back in the day. I am going to get the details wrong so I won't chime in at this point, but it was absolutely my favorite BBS software and in 1990 there were plenty of computers and BBS software for various computers to pick from. 

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On 9/5/2019 at 1:38 PM, chad5200 said:

I think I have a copy of TODAMIS.  Is this already available for download on the web?  If not, I can share what I have.

If someone else has the BBS itself of TODAMIS (i haven't checked yet whether or not people are confused thinking I mean AMIS - which TODAMIS is a bit different than AMIS thanks to Trent Dudley of AMODEM fame), do you have mods?  Would you happen to have a copy of The Vault's RISK BBS game? ;)

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On 9/9/2019 at 11:55 PM, Ice Cream Jonsey said:

Oh, that's great, glad it was found. I was a freshman in high school when I started calling The Moose BBS. There were a few of them in Rochester that ran Bob Puff's BBS software back in the day. I am going to get the details wrong so I won't chime in at this point, but it was absolutely my favorite BBS software and in 1990 there were plenty of computers and BBS software for various computers to pick from. 

Look who's here...my favorite BBS SysOp ever!

 

I *think* only Bob and Moose ran his software.  I used to work for Bob and (vaguely) remember how things were all set up.  I seem to recall he had two phone lines (one public, one private) that dialed into his BBS system and two (maybe three) 800XLs connected together via the Multiplexer hardware CSS sold.  It resided in a spare bedroom in his house and was the most disorganized pile of equipment I think I've ever seen, but damned if it didn't all work.  For its day it was a pretty impressive system, considering he basically created all of the software and hardware himself. 

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