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You are here: MacNN Forums > Enthusiast Zone > Classic Macs and Mac OS > 512k

512k
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Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: seaford, de, usa
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Oct 20, 2000, 02:07 PM
 
ok i've got an old 512k mac, and well it doesnt work. when i start it up it says sorry a system error occured id 26. is there a way i can boot off a floppy disk, and what needs to be on that floppy?

in case your wondering why i want this computer to boot is so i dont have a mac that doesn't work. i think it looks bad if a mac doesnt work. i also was wondering if there was some cool but simple screen saver i could put on this computer so it at least looks like it does something.

thanks,
Nasty P.
     
The Wolfe
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Oct 20, 2000, 03:07 PM
 
Just put a plain version of system 5 or 6 onto a floppy and that should boot for you just fine. I believe Apple offers the older system releases for download at their support site. If you have an external hard drive you can just hook it up to a little less antique computer and copy it over.

As for old screen savors, there was this one called Pyro that I always liked when I used Mac Pluses and 512k's in computer labs. No idea where to find it.


------------------
Eliott Wolfe
Winnetka, Calif
     
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Oct 21, 2000, 01:55 PM
 
Of course, there is always the option of donating the 512 to a thrift store; then you wouldn't have it around to be seen, no futzing around with floppys, no need for antique screen saver, no worries about cryptic system error messages, etc......
     
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Austria
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Oct 22, 2000, 06:16 AM
 
Nasty,

remember the Mac 512 K did not come standard with an internal hard disk. It did not have an SCSI port for external hard disks either. For this model just hard disks for the serial port were available in those days, but they were very, very rare.
So the usual way to run such a Mac 512 was with an additional external floppy drive, with system plus application on one floppy, data/documents on the other one.

Also note that the 512 did not read nor write today's 1.44 MB floppies. The original 512 had a 400 K floppy drive for single-sided floppies. There was a more expensive model a little later, the 512 KE (called "Reflex" in some markets such as Europe), that had an internal 800 K drive for DS/DD (i.e., double sided, double density) floppies.

If you do not happen to have the original Apple system disks, make sure to find the proper floppies in order to make your own by downloading the system files from Apple's site (something like version 2.x or 3.x of the System should do, it was not called Mac OS yet back then). Maybe you can get some blank 400 or 800 K floppies from a Mac user group. Ataris and Amigas also used at least the 800 K DS/DD floppies, I do not know about the 400 K ones.

I have worked with a 512 KE for years, so I might be able to help you if you have other questions, too.

Good luck and let us know how you are getting along with this (consider it a "project").

Best regards,

Walter.

     
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Oct 22, 2000, 06:31 AM
 
Some more, Nasty,

as I tried to put one of my old 800 DS floppies into a more recent Mac (Power Mac 7300, OS 7.6.1), it was able to read the floppy and to format it, too (but only Mac 800 K option being offered, not 400 K single sided).

Walter.

[This message has been edited by Walter J. Ferstl (edited 10-22-2000).]
     
NastyP  (op)
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Oct 22, 2000, 04:35 PM
 
ok, well i didnt know about this no hd and this floppy drive difference. at one point there was an external floppy but it has since been destroyed. i dont have any of the system disks, is there a way i could get a restore disk/boot disk or an image of one and a way to write it from a 'modern' drive?

thanks for all the info.
Nasty P.
     
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Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: A crappy place in Canada
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Nov 3, 2000, 05:30 AM
 
Greetings,
Have a look on the web. There are a few sites that have disk images of old systems on 400k disks. After you download the images, you need to make the floppies on a Mac that can run an older version of the Mac OS. Apple dropped support for the 400k disk in either OS 8 or OS 7.6.
Also, if you have a 400k drive in your 512k, it might be gummed up from the poor quality lubricant. I mean the mechanical parts that move when a disk is inserted and ejected. I've had to remove these old drives and manually move the parts about 50-100 times (and add a little new lubricant too) to get them moving smoothly again.
Good luck.
"Why did this thread cross the line? Because its **** got stuck in a chicken." - Demonhood
     
NastyP  (op)
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Nov 4, 2000, 11:25 AM
 
is it possible to install a new floppy drive into this 512 or even better a semi old hard drive?

thanks,
Nasty P.
     
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Nov 5, 2000, 04:22 AM
 
Greetings,
The best you can do about drives is an 800k floppy drive but you would need a ROM upgrade to make it work. It would be less expensive and easier to just buy another old Mac. Your 512k might already have this installed. The easiest way to check is to use an 800k boot disk and see if it works.
Hard drive? No. There was an external device called the HD20 that was a 20MB MFM disk drive that was just faster than a floppy. That's about it for the 128-512k line. A Mac Plus would give you the option to use an external SCSI hard disk as well as up to 4MB of RAM. Well, just don't spend too much money trying to get it to work as working old Macs are not too difficult to get. Do you have access to a Mac running an older version of System Software? If so, I'll give you a possible solution.
Let us know if you have further questions.
"Why did this thread cross the line? Because its **** got stuck in a chicken." - Demonhood
     
   
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