[vcf-midatlantic] Windows 3.11 Networking

Herb Johnson hjohnson at retrotechnology.info
Fri Mar 4 11:16:20 EST 2016

Bill Degnan, you've done a great job on of presenting your installs of 
Win 3.11 aka Windows for Workgroups and video drivers on your 486 
system, and providing access to your resources. I'm no Microsoft fan, 
but the history of public Internet access is worth preserving, and is 
reasonably "vintage" by year 2015-16.

One resource your site links to, is a site at Yale University, with 
(what I presume is a forgotten) set of year 1995 instructions for 
establishing Internet access. They suggest several possible means 
including "old" Win 3.1 and WFW, but also "Winsock".

I recall using a Winsock product as they describe, in the era probably 
under Win 85/98, to make a SLIP (serial TCP/IP) connection via dial-up 
modem, to a Linux commercial system which had Internet access. My first 
Web site was on that system, probably over my client side was a 16-bit 
Win98 set of installs. I don't recall the freeware product name, 
something-slip, seaslip, ???

Bill, Winsock was supported in various ways, by either 
shareware/freeware products, or commercial products. Do you have any 
interests in checking out Winsock type networking? Digging up some 
still-available product?

As I've described it, it would be period-appropriate for PC's with no 
hard-network support but certainly serial line support. At the time of 
course that would be dial-up; but a direct serial connection to a local 
hosting system would be (incrementally) faster.

I have a 486/Win 3.1 system I use to operate old-school hardware. I 
don't think I'd install Ethernet cards and WFW on it - it might break 
it. But installing a Winsock and some serial stuff is no risk.

I'll add, you discussed some kind of networking of vintage systems as 
your VCF-East exhibit, as I recall.

Related: five years ago, I worked the issue of TCP/IP support on 8-bit 
CP/M class systems. The radio amateurs (hams) developed packet radio in 
the 1980's which used X.25 protocols,and hardware "TNCs" (terminal 
network controllers) to do most of the networking, and software like 
KA9Q and KC85.

But interest in reviving old 8-bit networking died out, once you could 
buy "TCP/IP on a chip" products for under $50. And now those products 
are under $10! But my notes include some SLIP discussion and cover some 
path to 8-bit computers "on the Internet".

Herb Johnson
Herbert R. Johnson,  New Jersey USA
http://www.retrotechnology.com OR .net
preservation of 1970's computing
email: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
alternate: herbjohnson ATT retrotechnology DOTT info

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