McRat’s Z-80 and 486, hard at work

Speaking of outdated technology, I found a note to myself from a couple of weeks ago about a Z-80 machine and a 486 computer that are still in use on a daily basis. McRat generously posted them in the Community Cafe on the Ubuntu forums, in reply to a rather worn-out question: What’s the oldest computer you’re still using?

That question is (inadvertently?) resurrected every month or so, but McRat’s replies might take the trophy just for being still in use. It’s one thing to say you have Babbage’s analytical engine in your garage, but if it’s not actually being used, then … well, then it’s not actually being used. :|

The photos were fun too, and I’ll repost them here for the benefit of the people who aren’t members of the forum, and won’t otherwise be able to see them.


Not bad for machines that are still used on a daily basis. If I can get that much work out of the Pentiums I own, I’ll call myself very lucky indeed. :D

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2 Responses to “McRat’s Z-80 and 486, hard at work”

  1. 1 baldabiou 2010/07/12 at 10:50 PM

    That’s an incrdeble thing. Thank you for your blog, sir!

  2. 2 keithpeter 2010/07/13 at 1:00 AM

    “The data collected in routed into the 486, where a BASIC program translates it into CAD data”

    These venerable machines are doing calculations, same every day. No need to upgrade, no new software until there is a need to buy a new machine. I guess the main limitation is the lifetime of the electrical components in the case… magic.

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Some recent desktops

May 6, 2011
Musca 0.9.24 on Crux Linux
150Mhz Pentium 96Mb 8Gb CF

May 14, 2011
IceWM 1.2.37 and Arch Linux
L2300 core duo 3Gb 320Gb

Some recent games

Apr. 21, 2011
Oolite on Xubuntu 11.04
L2300 core duo 3Gb 320Gb

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