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A > ALPHA MICRO > 1000 Series


 

This mini forum is intended to provide a simple means of discussion about the Alpha Micro 1000 Series computer. If you want to share your own experience or memories, or add relevant information about this system: post a message! For other purposes like sales messages, hardware & software questions or information requests, please use our main forum.

  Click Here to add a message in the forum

 

Tuesday 15th March 2011
William V.

"Engineers knew a basic hack to get access to the $1,4$ system area without a password. " An Alpha Micro served as our high-school computer lab back in 1980... we found several versions of this hack within the first semester, and were able to save the day when the class teacher forgot the password for OPR:


Wednesday 1st September 2010
Dave Lea (UK)

worked on these in the late 80''s / early 90''s and i did get the biggest electric shock (240v) of my life off one when i discovered a previous engineer had removed the fuse cover from the psu exposing the mains fuse (ouch!)


Monday 29th March 2010
Deak Brenan (USA)

The last Alpha Micros that we maintained went out of use in 2004 after about 15 years of use. The staff still refer to it now. Engineers knew a basic hack to get access to the $1,4$ system area without a password. The Discana utility could fix any amount of system corruption and best of all, when colour monitors came out we were all shocked to find the Amos operating system was actually in colour. Who new?


Thursday 6th March 2008
John Caprise (Phoenix AZ)

I used this machine from 1996 up through 2002. It was the main brain behind an old Bowling Alley scoring system for Brunswick. Not only did it serve all of the scorers, the system was also used for daily reports in the bar and resturuant with a PLU driven software system. We also used it for league and torniment managments useing the scoring interface. The system was installed in the early 80's, yet this machine ran solid for nearly 20 years in a less than sterile envirenment (and , that is being very kind). The VHS data back up was surprisingly reliable. This machine was defenitly ahead of it's time in what it could do.

Obviously the AMOS and the Bowling Center software where a bit buggy by today's standards. Biut unliike allot of software running on Modern OS machines, it was far more stable. (Buggy but stable).

This was a great machine, the company had excellent support. I'm glad to know that they are still in business. I bet you you could still find it running in some older, more run down Bowling Alleys.


Friday 11th November 2016
Susie (US)

I have an Alpha Micro 1000 with the original power cord, monitor, users manual, and keyboard. It was used by our business for many years until 2000. My boss kept everything, and our company is finally closing down after his death. I know it is very rare to find one with all the components. It was in perfect working order the last time it was used and has been in our office storage for years. Is anyone interested in purchasing the system?


Thursday 10th November 2016
Andy

I have DRAVAC DR-100 board from 1980. Its covered with black paint (unusual). any info? Thank you!


Tuesday 30th August 2016
Joe B. (Colorado)

I worked on AM1000, to AM1000 between 1978 and approximately 1986 when I migrated all the Accounting and proprietary insurance software I wrote from AlphaBasic and DDL (Dravac Database Language, anyone remember that? from UK?).. they had a frontend compiler that linked to their extensions in basic. Originally I had my on ISAM I had written in Basic, and ported over the old AlphaAccounting to my own Code using that.. which later got abanded for a new Fangled 4GL in 1986 called at that time Data Language Corporation''s "Progress". Ran on 286 SCO Unix. by 1994 there were still people using Alpha Micro and I got to port someones else old alphabasic code to Progress for a Trucking Company. But since I cut my teeth on CP/M, 6502 assembler, Vector Graphic, northstar, and AMOS WD16 assmembler writing Tape Transfer software (lol, I have to laugh), I have fondness in my heart for the Alpha Micro.


Sunday 12th June 2016
Gordon (Usa)

I have an Am100/l main processor board available. Motorola MC68000P8 CPU. COntact me for pictures and details: gordon@hesketh.us


Tuesday 16th June 2015
Danny (USA)

Anyone have any working Alpha equipment they might be interested in selling?

I would love to have a system for hobby use, I first worked on them in the early 80s in high school, then was a programmer on them for about 6 years after that.

I would be pretty open on the models, 100$L, 1000. I would love to find that a AM-1500 (or other VME model) is available.

Alphabase$Metropolis license would be a HUGE bonus :)



Thanks very much,




Danny


Tuesday 7th April 2015
Terri (United States)

If anyone is interested in getting a hold of some old (working) Alpha Micro systems (please state specific system, 1000, eagle, etc), please contact me and I will forward your info to someone that will likely be able to locate a model for you. tmando@iname.com


Wednesday 2nd October 2013
Pat Dow (Oregon)

I worked on the AM from 1981 thru 1987 as a Field Engineer and later as a Sales Engineer with Alpha Micro.
@Joel, your mom was my boss for a while back then!


Tuesday 30th October 2012
Dan Danknick (Boulder CO)

I had the great fortune to work at Alpha in the early 1990s in the OS group, fixing SPRs and adding enhancements. AMOS was an amazing OS and of course, we did all of our work in M68 assembler. At my next job I had to learn 286 asm and thought that the segmented address scheme was pure madness by the Intel engineers! I am glad to say I''m still friends with fellow programmers that I met at Alpha, now 21 years later.


Friday 20th July 2012
Joel Kelly (Las Vegas, NV)

My Mom was the (by the end) the Regional Sales Manager of the entire West Coast. She was the President and then a member of the AMOS group, which I vaguely remember going to as a kid. I remember how the AM machines "kicked-ass all over" the old VAX junk.

I think she started out working for Howard Ogle, the President and Founder of MacroTech. They built knock-off products that did stuff a bit better, I think.

Honestly, I was more interested with her $9000 Mac IIci as a kid. With Aldus Illustrator and I think even PhotoShop!!! WhooOOo!


Friday 18th November 2011
Carl Best (Oregon, USA)

I serviced Alpha Micro Computers from 1982 up until about 1997.
The AM1000 had just come out when I started working with an Alpha Micro dealer as a field service engineer.
I also serviced the old S-100 bus systems, from the original AM100 with the Western Digital Micro PDP11 processor up to the Motorola 68000 based AM1062, and the single board successors to the AM1000, the AM1200, AM1500, AM2000 and AM3000.
Over the years, as customers bought newer computers, I aquired a farily comprehensive collection of old Alpha-Micro computers, including an 8 inch dual-floppy AM100, an AM100/T with a 30Mb winchester drive, an AM1042 68000 based S-100 system, a collection of AM1000''s, AM1500/2000/3000.
They all run, and I have complete AMOS documentation, plus full electrical schematics for the older computers.
These were great computers, and ran rings around anything else built at the time.
Multitasking? in 1982, an Alpha Micro with a 68000 processor could handle 4 users connected via dumb terminals, print to two or three printers simultaneously, and nobody would ever notice a pause or slowdown while they worked. Some of the larger systems supported dozens of users and six or eight printers seamlessly.
At that time, an IBM PC went to sleep every time the single user printed a document. It wasn''t until Windows 95 that the PC world even approched that kind of performance.


Saturday 17th September 2011
FRANKLIN (75) (Caracas - Venezuela)

Hello ... Down here , we still have some 1200 in use .
Could be +/- 12, all running applications just like 25 yrs ago . The only technician is the one writting this , all the others are retired or have 10'' of soil over the chest !!!
Solid machine ! Hey, it''s not true that the security chip''s X-ray protected ... I''ve got my 1200 all set to support !


Sunday 6th January 2008
gs (california)

I remember the salvation army using alpha micro systems in their churches. we sometimes received support calls about those.

there is a nice website on the am's that is actually running on a later eagle model: http://ampm.floodgap.com

please post any ebay auctions you find on one, i would love to play with one again..


Saturday 21st July 2007
js (nowhere)

Apparently AMOS development is very heavily guarded; the microcode on the mainboards is top secret!


Saturday 21st April 2007
alessandro (italy)

back in '88 I worked on it , the one I've used was the only computer I've ever seen with a storage mass on VHS tape , transfer rate was terrible 15 min for 200k of data .I remember that the security chip built in was X-ray protected ,programmer trainer told me .


Sunday 22nd February 2004
Pete Fenelon (UK)

There is now an Alpha Micro/AMOS emulator - "am100" by Mike Noel.

Looks pretty good. Works well enough to boot AMOS and do some fairly simple tasks.





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