August 30, 2017

Convergent Technologies MiniFrame Found!

Just a few days ago, in the mfm-discuss Google Group, Frank Hintsch in Hamburg, Germany, asked for some help imaging the MFM hard drive on his Convergent Technoloties MiniFrame.  We were VERY excited to see this message pop up, because before this week, we haven't been able to find any surviving MiniFrames.

As of today, this MiniFrame is the only confirmed survivor that we have found.

Do you have a MiniFrame hidden away somewhere?  If so, please let us know!  Either way, please enjoy the pictures and story below.

For those of you who are Convergent Technologies Alum Facebook Group members, we have a discussion going about this over there.

So here it is, in Frank's own words:

I bought it in 1985, worked with it some years (software developing), then it was stored away in the basement. Now I had the time to recover this nice machine. It is starting, booting and prompting for login! But dam it! I forgot the root (and any other) password!
I discussed this problem with the German forum for "classical computers" (it's like america's VCF). The conclusion is: Read in the hard disk with MFM emulator and try a decryption of /etc/passwd entries.

The machine has some kind of minimal configuration, no tape device, no network adapter, just one TM31 (Motorola naming) terminal connected over RS422 or RS232.





And Frank has started a thread on this machine on a German vintage computing forum.




So, as you may notice, this machine is branded "Motorola" model 6300.  So, now the question I have is, what arrangement was made between Motorola and Convergent Technologies for this?

Frank has provided four manuals for this machine, apparently created by Motorola.  You can view/download each one of them here:  (NOTE: these PDFs are not complete manuals, but only the beginning of each, as a "sample".  We hope to get the full manual here soon.)





An archive of the largest collection of information on this machine can be found on oldcomputers.dyndns.org

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Other MiniFrames, whereabouts unknown, I have documented on these other pages over the years: