A recent blog posting discussed the clearing out of filing cabinets and cupboards.
The cupboard was a dumping ground for, among other things, various IT bits and pieces which had accumulated over the years. Most of the old PCs and ancillary peripherals and consumables had long ago been scrapped and disposed of. So what “treasures” were found that may raise a few pounds on eBay? Obviously the contents were all kept like most things - “just in case”.
Memory chips - about 30-40 memory SIMMs. Over the years memory was replaced in various PCs taking out old SIMMs and replacing with bigger ones.
Floppy disks - 3.5” disks and also a few 5.25” ones! When was the last time you used a floppy disk? I bet there are many readers that have never used them. When was the last time you bought a PC with a disk drive? These will be destroyed - cannot see any use for them now.
Leads - dozens of them! Many were from the very old network we had at least 20 years ago. There were various printer leads, kettle leads and there were others that I have no idea what they were for!
Hard disks - a handful that were probably taken out of scrapped PCs - a 20gb drive - that may be useful. On the other hand….?
There was also an assortment of mice and keyboards, mouse-mats, video cards, books (2 copies of Getting Results with Microsoft Office 97-all 700 pages of it) and various boxes of computer programs. This included Norton Utilities 4 complete with manual and 5.25” disks - copyright 1987, Ernst & Whinney MicroSystems accounts package training files from 1987 and a box of QuickBooks version 2 complete with manuals from 1994!
There was also a “laptop” computer…..an Amstrad ALT386SX from around the late 1980s. A search for an image on the web brought up some that were in various PC museums! In the end I decided to use my own picture. (Poor quality image I know!)
The system had 2MB of RAM and an 80MB hard disk, and a monochrome display supporting VGA graphics. Whilst a “laptop”, the weight of the machine is some 7Kg and is pretty bulky in today’s terms.
The laptop was plugged in and turned on ….and it booted up immediately. No windows operating system here and not a cloud in sight.! It booted to the MSDOS prompt - good old c>.
There were various bits of software available on the computer which were available driven by a menu - a piece of software called Automenu where you could define various actions or programs to launch in MS-DOS. There was also an accounting package - a real trip back in time and the subject of a future blog posting.
So - has anyone any IT related devices or products earlier than these mentioned?
And what is the oldest PC you still have in the office storerooms? Does it work?
PS - anyone want to buy an Amstrad ALT-386SX (working-but no manuals)? Perhaps you know of a museum that wants one!