- 2019-09-23 @ 08:18 AM EST / Linux Server Security 101
- 2019-09-12 @ 06:22 AM EST / Zettelkasten
- 2019-07-13 @ 06:04 PM EST / Video Game Memories - 1976: The Year of Pong
- 2019-07-13 @ 10:00 AM EST / Amiga Project - It's dead, Jim
- 2019-07-13 @ 08:02 AM EST / Amiga Project - This isn't looking good
- 2019-07-13 @ 03:34 AM EST / Amiga Project - Trouble in Paradise
- 2019-07-12 @ 10:08 AM EST / Bridging Old and New Technology
- 2019-07-12 @ 01:37 AM EST / Amiga Project: GoTek
- 2019-07-11 @ 07:33 PM EST / Amiga Project: Compact Flash Drive
- 2019-07-10 @ 04:24 PM EST / New Website Design
- 2019-07-09 @ 11:55 PM EST / Science Fiction
I decided pretty early on that I was not only going to repair my Amiga 500 but that I was also going to upgrade it as best I could to act and perform like a modern computer. Encouraged by my recent successes, I decided it was time for some much needed upgrades. The Wicher 500i turbo card and an additional 8MB of 60ns EDO memory have now been installed along with the new AmigaOS 3.1.4 ROM. I was a bit worried about installing the v3.1.4 ROM because of its memory requirements. However, the updated operating system booted up with no problems at all.
I was even able to run Dungeon Master because of the RAM upgrade. That being said, I still think that I should splurge and buy an additional 1MB of RAM in the form of a trapdoor upgrade card. Finally, I still need to get the Micro-SD IDE adapter installed so that I can install AmigiOS v3.1.4 onto it properly, and I also need to install the Wicher 500i drivers/software and then enable those drivers in the OS so that I can take advantage of the new EC68020 CPU and bump up the speed. Finally, I need to somehow get my GoTek drive running so that I can finally get some software/games installed. I have a ton of work to do. However, I am extremely pleased with my progress thus far.
The next step in my Amiga project is installing the Wicher 500i accelerator card. This card will bump up the CPU from a 7 Mhz Motorola 68000 to a 50 Mhz 68020 and it'll bump the RAM from 512KB to 8MB. After that I'll be able to install the 8GB Micro-SD/HD and the new v3.1.4 operating system.
Hard to believe but I actually managed to repair my Amiga 500 this evening. The A500 wasn't outputting a video signal to the monitor and it wasn't showing post codes. There are two lights on the computer that typically light up when the system is booting up. These lights will flash in certain patterns in order to show a successful boot or any problems that the BIOS ran across. My system would turn on and I would get a single green light and that was it. No video, no post codes, no way to load anything from a disk.
I ended up taking the case off, pulling the RF shielding, and then checking the system board for any potential problems. I was looking for things like leaking capacitors, burnt resistors, broken traces, and missing or misaligned chips. There are a ton of custom chips on Amigas and I had to systematically check every single one before I found the problem. The Motorola 68000 CPU and the ROM chips had somehow popped partially out of their sockets. I snapped them back in place, plugged everything back in, held my breath and flipped the power switch. I was greeted with successful post lights and eventually the familiar Amiga loading screen appeared. Whew!
You should see my son's room. It's like some kind of bizarre lair for a midget mad genius. Wires and electronic bits all over the place, things buzzing and clicking, LCD screens reading out strange code that I've never seen before, LED lights hanging from everything, computers dinging and churning away at unknown tasks...
To make matters worse I can't find any of my spare parts. I'm looking for my 2016 MacBook Pro and it's no where to be found. Same thing for all of my extra power supplies, cables, USB power bricks, etc. What the heck is my 9 year-old son doing with all of this stuff? Building Skynet?
Turns out the electrical surge killed the USB-C port that the charging cable was plugged into. I can't get more than 15w of power on that port now. The remaining three USB-C ports all generate 60w. So, it’s back to the Apple store I go. This is going to be an expensive repair.
If it isn’t one thing it’s another. Last night we had some thunderstorms roll into the area for a few hours. Unfortunately, I forgot and left my 2018 MacBook Pro plugged in and charging. Let’s just say there was a flash of lightning, followed by a crack of thunder, followed by my MacBook Pro instantly shutting down. Doh!