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10 hours ago, 20ohm20 said:

It's for programming the 5TI series of PLC's/sequencers.  Shockingly, many companies still use 5TI systems to run assembly lines and machinery today.  Apparently, I'm one of the few people in this country that still has the equipment and knowledge to work on these things.

The -3104 version that uses the weird 2.78M/3M drive is used on the 560/565 series, right? Other than the software and the drive, is there any real difference? There's still a 5TI port on the 3104 even though it's not used.

 

2 3102's for $200 ea: https://www.ebay.com/itm/VPU200/252825294898?hash=item3add8fd832:g:d5YAAOSwGIRXatR0

Hard to tell what condition. Local pickup only, Franklin TN.  Possibly software and manuals?

 

Hardware manual for 3104:

 

simatic_vpu2003104.pdf

 

Intro to ladder logic for the uninitiated following this:

 

https://library.automationdirect.com/understanding-ladder-logic/

Edited by jbdigriz
attach manual for 3104, ladder logic URL

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On 9/26/2013 at 2:58 PM, AtariLeaf said:

Okay, I need your input, am I CRAZY for thinking this auction is 'out there'?

 

I mean this is a minimum $13.99 for a couple of OPENED and EMPTY boxes with some old paperwork.

Last year I discovered around twenty pristine Nintendo64 game boxes with manuals in a bin in my attic. No cartridges inside.

 

Some sold for around $40 on eBay. Apparently the boxes are worth MORE than the game cartridges themselves. Especially boxes for Mario or Pokémon games.  
 

Where there’s demand with very little supply we discover value.

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17 hours ago, jbdigriz said:

There's still a 5TI port on the 3104 even though it's not used.

I seem to remember restoring the ladder logic for a customer that had a 5TI system a few years ago from my -3104 VPU.  At least I remember the customer had their logic stored on one of those obscure format disks that I've never been able to find.  Typically I had to restore the logic to the 5TI sequencer from hard copy with a handheld programmer that looks like a early 70's calculator.

 

Edit:  We had two VPU's and I might have used the other which has (I think) a standard double density floppy drive (and requires a operating system disk).  

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Out of curiosity, what is the difference between a TM and a TMS? What does TM/TMS stand for? I never see anyone asking about this, so it probably is common knowledge, but have been curious. Also, is a TMS better than a TM since there's an "S" added? :)

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Google says

TMS Definition

Fully-qualified production device. MicroStar BGA is a trademark of Texas Instruments. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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10 hours ago, Toucan said:

Out of curiosity, what is the difference between a TM and a TMS? What does TM/TMS stand for? I never see anyone asking about this, so it probably is common knowledge, but have been curious. Also, is a TMS better than a TM since there's an "S" added? :)

TMS is the prefix for their processors and support chips. TMS9900, TMS9995, TMS9901, TMS9902, ...

TIM is the prefix for related chips that are also available as part of the standard 74LS logic family. TIM9904 = 74LS362, TIM9905 = 74LS151, ...

TMP and TMX prefixes are also used for prototype and preproduction/validation(?) versions of the chips.

Some processors also available as "SBP" versions, which use a different type of logic (I²L). SBP9900, SBP9989.

TM990 is their range of microcomputer building block modules. http://www.stuartconner.me.uk/tm990/tm990.htm

TI990 is their range of minicomputers. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TI-990

 

Have never seen what TM/TMS actually stand for!

 

 

Edited by Stuart
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On 2/16/2021 at 3:28 PM, 20ohm20 said:

I seem to remember restoring the ladder logic for a customer that had a 5TI system a few years ago from my -3104 VPU.  At least I remember the customer had their logic stored on one of those obscure format disks that I've never been able to find.  Typically I had to restore the logic to the 5TI sequencer from hard copy with a handheld programmer that looks like a early 70's calculator.

Right, I was going to ask if you had used one of those handhelds. I see them on ebay occasionally.

 

Those are some really oddball drives. Double-sided, 17 sectors per track, 160
tracks, 192 tpi. The manuals refer to either 2.78 or 3M, but apparently it's capable of 3.3M, but that's maybe unformatted capacity. More storage for more ladders than standard drives, anyway. A common upgrade was to install 2 standard 1.44M 3-1/2 inch floppies. Nowadays the hot tip would be an HxC or similar device:

 

https://torlus.com/floppy/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1019

 

Quote

Edit:  We had two VPU's and I might have used the other which has (I think) a standard double density floppy drive (and requires a operating system disk).  

I have a couple of those that I'm working on, 3102's. Yeah, the 3104 will program 5TI's too, it's just not covered in these 560/565 manuals that go with the one I listed above. It would need the 5TI software version, no doubt.

 

https://support.industry.siemens.com/cs/attachments/17515236/560-8102-4.pdf?download=true

https://cache.industry.siemens.com/dl/files/939/17518939/att_110681/v1/560-8102-2.pdf

 

Doubt you need those, but maybe others following along will, and they need to be archived. Corporate support pages tend to be ephemeral.

 

The second manual above covers interfacing to Silent 700 printing terminals and 810 printers through the aux port. Those instructions should apply to the 3102 as well.

 

To use either programmer as a terminal or standalone computer you would need to make a different software disk with TXDS, various utilities, and terminal emulations, plus maybe some development tools. With some tweaking it should be doable relatively easily. The Siemens manuals aren't going to cover this, but thankfully bitsavers,  Dave Pitts, and Stuart Conner have made much 990 goodness available. There may be more stuff on the Siemens site, but I don't see a lot of things that used to be there when I was looking some years ago. Maybe somebody who used to work at the Johnson City plant for TI or Siemens,  especially in engineering, will run across this and has more they can share. I hope so, anyway.

 

https://www.cozx.com/ti990.html

https://bitsavers.org/pdf/ti/990/tx990

https://bitsavers.org/bits/TI/990/TX990/TX990_TXDS_2.0

See Stuart's TM990 link a few posts back, also.

Edited by jbdigriz
readablilty, typos
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2 hours ago, jbdigriz said:

See Stuart's TM990 link a few posts back, also.

But again, DO NOT mix VPU and TM990 hardware!!! In either chassis. Do not put VPU boards in a TM990 or vice versa. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!

 

Some TM990 software should work on a VPU with some hacking, though. Basic, Forth, assemblers, etc.

Edited by jbdigriz
emphasis!!!
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38 minutes ago, acadiel said:

Someone paid a lot for this.... hopefully someone here?

95E448EF-71F1-46C7-B88D-8905AB86C89E.png

Not I. Real 911 here. No 820 yet. It's interesting to speculate what 911 terminal emulation looks like on a 4A, though. And the keyboard layout.

Edited by jbdigriz

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Furthermore, I'm wondering how there wouldn't have been additional hardware needed to interface the emulation.

 

The 911 VDT is kind of a strange duck. It is almost purely a CRT display, plus an attached keyboard. Most of the circuitry is purely analog. The encoded keyboard output is serialized by a UART in the VDT and passed on to a controller board in the host 990. The VDT controller generates a composite video signal displayed by the CRT, and the audio as well. The 911 itself performs none of the terminal logic or display generation functions. The most obvious 4A implementation would be a small interface on the expansion bus. You could keep it simple by using the PEB or standalone RS232's UARTs. All you'd need then would be an interface for video and modem audio signals. There are also audio oscillator and terminal ready lines. You'd need some custom cabling, of course. 

 

The block diagram on pp. 1-25/1-26 of the 911 VDT Depot Maintenance Manual shows this maybe a little better. I'd post it here but it's a 2M+ jpeg and very slow to load, so I'll just give the link to the whole manual:

 

http://www.bitsavers.org/pdf/ti/terminal/crt/945424-9701_911_Terminal_Depot_Maintenance_Manual_Feb79.pdf

 

Possibly you could fake this with a purely serial interface and use the 4A's capabilities to generate the screen and sound, but that would take modifying the 911 DSR's on the 990, rather heavily.  Add a software emulation passthrough layer in place of the VDT controller board, and redirect to a serial port, basically. Not too appealing if you ask me, feels like a kluge, but doable.

 

Not hard to figure out why TI would have kept this "internal", though.  Probably netted a lot more for a 911 than a 4A. 🙂 But if I'm right, there should be some hardware to go with this software. Now that I think about it, you might be able to talk the Video Controller interface into thinking it was talking to a VCR instead of a 990. Have to look into that. I dunno, gotta be something, though.

Edited by jbdigriz
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8 hours ago, jbdigriz said:

Furthermore, I'm wondering how there wouldn't have been additional hardware needed to interface the emulation.

 

 

No, this emulator was used by TI employees to check emails from home. And anything else enabled by logging in to DNOS or whatever.

 

If a TI employee had a TI-99/4A set up at home, they could get a Hayes 300 baud modem and this software. No other special hardware.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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28 minutes ago, FarmerPotato said:

No, this emulator was used by TI employees to check emails from home. And anything else enabled by logging in to DNOS or whatever.

 

If a TI employee had a TI-99/4A set up at home, they could get a Hayes 300 baud modem and this software. No other special hardware.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OK, I think I'm getting how it worked now, to have a 911 mode it would have to go through a terminal/channel controller on the other end of the line, probably RTS installed on the 990. Had to put my thinking cap on for a minute. You can see I was coming at it with my second option above. BTW, this is similar to other minis and mainframes of the day.  

 

Sometimes you can't see the forest for the trees.

 

Thanks,

jbdigriz

 

Edited by jbdigriz
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On 2/25/2021 at 10:32 PM, acadiel said:

Someone paid a lot for this.... hopefully someone here?

95E448EF-71F1-46C7-B88D-8905AB86C89E.png

Just think, if it WAS someone here, or anywhere else, and they posted a copy here, or on whtech or some other repository, they might, just possibly, get a few people to help out with what seems to be a rather extravagant expense. Of course, that might impinge on the ability of the selfless and noble Ebay seller to garner bids on his new listing of another copy of the emulator. So, no, by all means, don't do that! Please!

Edited by jbdigriz
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A very bad thing I could imagine is, that 2 people here from AA - with the intention to publish the .DSKs at the end of the story - bidding higher and higher against each other, not knowing about...

The worst thing could be, that it goes off for 20 Dollars, and vanishes to Nirwana...

 

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4 hours ago, GDMike said:

It weren't me, no moolah so check ✔️ me off

Isn't that a problem we all have at one time or another?  ;)

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11 hours ago, Schmitzi said:

A very bad thing I could imagine is, that 2 people here from AA - with the intention to publish the .DSKs at the end of the story - bidding higher and higher against each other, not knowing about...

The worst thing could be, that it goes off for 20 Dollars, and vanishes to Nirwana...

 

Ebay's enlightened, consumer-friendly bidder masking at work. Honestly, I'm going to start using forum marketplaces and such more, and get cracking on my blog like I should have long ago. Need to do that anyway.

 

Edited by jbdigriz
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13 hours ago, Ksarul said:

The primary function of bidder masking was to eliminate shill bidder complaints. . .

Operative word being "complaints". One wonders if it had any actual effect on the activity. Could have made it worse. No way to tell, really.

 

Ebay bidding policies: How to sow discord, anxiety, and jealousy, engage paranoia, confound collaboration, fracture communities, inflate prices on dismembered machines, blackhole history yet claim credit for salvaging it, thwart archival and emulation progress, and squander long-term markets, all in one fell swoop. Syllabus listing, Entropy 101

 

Used to be Ebay let you use your email for your ID. They stopped that because of "bidder collusion", side deals, and "depriving Ebay of fees". Instead of doing the sensible thing and incorporating a broker's/finder's non-refundable fee or deposit  into the billing for the listings, they broke a useful feature and pretended to sellers and buyers that they were helping them.

 

Hey, it's for business. Nobody ever said it had to make sense. 

Edited by jbdigriz

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Okay, not TI, but if a really shoddy homemade wooden case, a raspberry pi zero, a cheap windows USB keyboard, and some hot glue makes a $900 Apple I replica, I gotta get to work in my shop ‘cause I now have a new way to fund my computer hobby:

 

https://www.ebay.ca/itm/Apple-I-Replica-built-into-Homebrew-Case/193930829761?hash=item2d272d9fc1:g:cE4AAOSw2bpgPo7b

 

And he doesn’t even include the monitor for that price!

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