ICL DRS300 dos system problem

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deanmorgan

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Hi Guys, I am a bit if a beginner here and have a problem with my old DRS300 ICL dos based system. I am in the middle of replacing this with a pc system but unfortunately in the midst of changing the DRS300 has packed up.

When I say packed up I mean one of the drives.

I have already sent the hard drive (a miniscribe 8425 mfm) for data recovery but to no avail. They have said that it was corrupted and had bad media. This drive held the boot up and operating system. The other drive which hold the data in the DRS300 is ok but i cannot access the info to do anything with it. I can access the files using a floppy disc that has a type command in it but can only view the info.

Is there any way of interfacing a pc with this type of miniscribe drive to access the files and tranfer the data to a word or excel so I can at least print the data and have hard copies. All the files held on the drive are text files.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
 

JohnWill

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You'll need to round up an old system that has an ISA bus slot, since I've never seen an MFM/RLL controller for PCI. In addition, you need to know the configuration in the BIOS for the cylinders/heads/sectors per track, since they vary for individual drives.

Since you have floppy access, let's consider plan B.

You can use a serial port transfer application on the floppy to access the files required, and transfer them using serial communications. One that I have used in the past is ZIP221, a lightweight DOS based serial port transfer package.

Depending on the amount of data, you could also copy them a few at a time to a floppy and move them over that way.
 

deanmorgan

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Hello John,

Thanks for your prompt reply. Not being technical I am not sure whether I can do what your saying.

The only access I have to the files is by typing A:type (file name).bom. This will then display the files contents on screen.

However I must have a particular floppy in the drive to be able to type the TYPE command. The problem I have is that I do not know how to copy any of the floppy contents onto my good f: so I can then use a different floppy to copy onto.

The floppy consists of 1 file named DRIUTILS.BLD. It is made up of several .CMD lines ie...STOP, TYPE, CHKDSK, PRINTMGR and various others.

Am I correct in saying that if I could copy the contents of this file onto my good F: I could then copy my data onto new floppys ?

Sorry for sounding a bit stupid but I am a bit over my head here at the moment.
 

JohnWill

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If you boot with an MS-DOS floppy with minimal support, you should have about 1mb of free space on a 1.44mb floppy.

When you boot the MS-DOS floppy, the hard disk should appear as C: or D:, depending on the exact configuration. In any case, let's assume C: for now.

If you type the following line, you can copy a file from the hard disk to the floppy.

COPY C:\(file name).bom A:\

this will copy that file to the floppy. You can copy as many as will fit, then remove them on the new system, erase them from the floppy, and do it again.

Obviously, I don't know how many you have, which is why I suggested the serial transfer utility.
 

deanmorgan

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Thanks John I will give it a go. We have quite a lot (approx 1300 files) but I will jeust get someone to sit a punch the info in. I will see how it goes.
 

JohnWill

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Like I said, a serial or parallel port transfer application might be quicker. :)
 

deanmorgan

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Well I think I may have got somewhere !! at last. :)

Have found a command PIP that will effectively copy the file to a dot matrix printer and print the file.

Have trie the same command PIP to send it to a PC using the Hyperlink facility and it works but unfortunately is printing incorrect text format. Not sure if this is something to do with baud rates etc.

Have also managed to copy our BOM files to floppys so hopefully I can now open these on a standard pc.

The main stock file however is 17 meg and I obviosuly cannot transfer via floppys. Someone has mentioned that you can use a command BACKUP which will stitch the files together onto however many floppyes are required. The you use RESTOE to stitch them back together on a PC. Am going to look into this one now.
 

deanmorgan

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p.s. For information have been told that the system is not MS-DOS but CPM C-DOS. Does not mean to much to me....
 

JohnWill

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WOW! CP/M? Man, that system is old! :D

Have you looked at Kermit? It has pretty decent file transfer capability, and would make this job less painful. I used this once years ago when I had a CP/M system that I wanted to move stuff from. It comes in flavors for all machines, CP/M Kermit, MS-DOS Kermit, and Windows Kermit.
 

deanmorgan

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Thanks John, will have a look.

Yes it is old and it is a flaming nuisance................:mad:

Hoping I will be able get some luck with the transfer tomorrow. Have somebody coming round tomorrow to give me some guidance.... and god do I need it...:D
 

deanmorgan

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Don't seem to have made any breakthrough. I have been able to send the data to a dot matrix using a PIP PRN:=(File name). This works fine.

Have used both the hyper terminal and kermit and then sent the data using the same command but unfortunately it seems to communicate but prints on screen complete nonsense. I am guessing the file transfer set up has to be a particular type and I have no idea what it should be set as.

Starting to struggle now....:(
 

JohnWill

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You want binary files, that will get you everything in the files.
 

deanmorgan

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Jan 9, 2007
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Have just managed to get a files data across. The data rates had to be set to 75...

Now that i have the text captured I need to find a program to be able to open it and use. Have tried notepad but to no avail. At least i seem to be getting somewhere ...very slowly.....
 

deanmorgan

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Unfortunately it appears that I can not send a file to my laptop. All I can do is either copy or print the contents of the file.

This although not 100% would help. Only problem now is that it saves the file on the pc as a log file but I cann ot open it with any program.
 
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