[rescue] Slightly OT: ?Bad Cap Saga

der Mouse mouse at Rodents-Montreal.ORG
Thu Aug 21 01:53:59 CDT 2008

> Do you think that someone like Asus could sell 1,000 with a parallel
> port?

If they wanted to, yes, I think they could.  They (FSVO "they") sell
all sorts of utterly useless guff simply because advertising
departments have convinced consumers they want it anyway.

> At what point does it become impossible to source the chips?

Well, strictly, never; it jsut becomes uneconomic.

> Or more importantly when does it no longer become possible to connect
> them to the CPU.  As an example all those bus master SCSI, IDE and
> video controller chips from the 386/486 days won't work on a modern
> computer no matter what you do.

I don't believe that.  What I believe _is_ the truth is that they would
require substantial hackery, probably needing both hardware and
software hackery.

> You might be able to connect them to a bus, but they are limited to
> 16 megabytes of memory.  Windows 95 and Linux version 1 had device
> drivers that would compensate, but does Vista or Linux 2.6?

I have no idea, since I don't even use, much less hack on, either.  I'm
fairly sure NetBSD does (or at least easily could); they call them
"bounce buffers" and they use them for very analogous but more common
situations, cases where a DMA device can access only part of the
system's RAM - this is not as unusual as situation as you seem to think
it is.

> Could they still be written?  If so, by whom?

Any good kernel hacker for the relevant OS, of course.

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