Hey oldcomputerfreak (or others who know old comps) I'm callin ya out!

markjs

markjs

Vlad The Impaler
#1
I just got a laptop to play with (free) and it's an ancient Zenith Quattro Pro. What is it? 386? 286? Where can I find info on it? It wont do anything but say "Bad or missing Command Interpreter" and has no other markings to speak of but serial numbers, model ZWL-183-93, and FCC ID:EDI9YA-557CPP15. Any clue on what it is and what to do? boot disk doesn't do anything (win 95 though I didn't expect it to), and I cannot figure how to enter setup. Thanks

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....I live like this cuz I like it, I've seen too much to pretend. You can't ignore the beauty of the things that you love just like you can't stand the hatred and the lies....Steve Albini
 
R

Robert Dunnill

New Member
#2
If it's a *really* old laptop, you might try running Dos and Windows 3.0 or 3.1.

The error message sounds like a DOS one, ie it can'd find command.com.

Cheers, R.D.
 
butchsor

butchsor

New Member
#3
Yeah, it's the missing DOS.

CMOS set-up, try:
ALT+Delete, F4 or try all function keys


I know only Quattro Pro--the best worksheet apps. made by Borland that knocked the infamous Lotus 123
 
U

uart

New Member
#4
Butchsor is right, no Dos. You need a dos bootable floppy. Once you boot from floppy check that it can see the c: drive. If it can try "sys c:", if it can't then use "fdisk" to recreate a primary partition followed by "format /s /u"
 
J

JollyRoger

New Member
#5
You Command.com is defunct, follow uart's lead for replacing it, but be carefull of your DOS Version. REALLY old machines (talking 286) might be running DOS 4 or earlier, which is bad. it will run DOS 6, so find a copy and try it, it's worth it for the extra base mem from Himem
 
ThreeOnTheTree

ThreeOnTheTree

New Member
#7
Hard to say without knowing the specs, but it needs to have either a pretty fast 486 or a Pentium CPU to run Win95.
 
Justintime

Justintime

Moderator
#8
One site i see lists memory below a meg, so DOS is most likely all you can manage.

Floppy Disk Drive- 1.44MB "3.5 disk"
Hercules LCD
16MB Hardrive
640k ram

Win95 is a loooooooong time away son.
 
Hoyle

Hoyle

New Member
#9
I'm guessing it's probably a 286 4 or 386 8 Mhz chip.

640k RAM! I think that's one step up from a PC Junior. I don't think Windows 3.1 will operate with less than 2MB - and performance is terrible even with 3MB.

But you would want Himem. Without it DOS only uses 64K (16-bit), I think.
 
glussier

glussier

Active Member
#10
But you would want Himem. Without it DOS only uses 64K (16-bit), I think.
Dos could address 16 64kBytes segments (1mB of address space). You needed himem on a 286 and above if you wanted to use the wrap around kludge, giving you an extra 64kBytes of address space, that could be used to store resident programs such as drivers or even command.com. Himem was also required on 808x and above if you wanted to access ems memory using and ems driver that would let you access several megs of ram via a windows usually at segment D000.
 
ThreeOnTheTree

ThreeOnTheTree

New Member
#12
Gig of what? Hard disk space? Even so, you should still be able to run Windows 95 or 98. At least then you could run some apps. Anything older than that and you're going to have a tough time finding software.
 
Hoyle

Hoyle

New Member
#14
Dos could address 16 64kBytes segments (1mB of address space). You needed himem on a 286 and above if you wanted to use the wrap around kludge, giving you an extra 64kBytes of address space, that could be used to store resident programs such as drivers or even command.com. Himem was also required on 808x and above if you wanted to access ems memory using and ems driver that would let you access several megs of ram via a windows usually at segment D000.
Didn't know that, thanks Gluss.

4.77 or 8Mhz 80C88 (186 I think), optional 10 or 20MB hard drive, 720K floppy, 512-640K memory. The modem was a 1200 or 2400 baud external modem. Man this is a door stop. DOS is about all you will get running on this.
No such thing as a 186, Todd, although the 80(C)88 WOULD have been a 80(C)186, had Intel switched to the newer naming convention (80(C)286, 80(C)386, etc.) sooner. Instead, there was the original 1802, then the legendary 80(C)86 and finally the 80(C)88.
 
Todd a

Todd a

New Member
#15
Well I know that, but I thought it was the IBM PC, 286 (my oldest brother had both of these), 386, 486. I call the IBM PC a 186. I think my old TRS-80 Color Computer used a 2Mhz 80C86 or something like that. Old... reary old indeed. My first computer was a 286 SX 25Mhz with 2MB on board. This is WAY beyond this Zenith system. :D

I mean come on... this is the chip they show as the CPU:

 
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Hoyle

Hoyle

New Member
#16
Well, the chips were manufactured for IBM's PC and PC Jr products originaly (with Tandy the first real clone). But they were always Intel brand names (even if IBM practically drew them up).
 
DanceMan

DanceMan

Procrastinating Member
#18
Todd a said:
4.77 or 8Mhz 80C88 (186 I think), optional 10 or 20MB hard drive, 720K floppy, 512-640K memory. Man this is a door stop. DOS is about all you will get running on this.
If you try to get DOS running on it, remember to use an old 720/800 Kb floppy. They're the ones with only one square indexing hole.
 
Justintime

Justintime

Moderator
#20
david21136 said:
its a Pentium with not event a gig on it
Not a pentium, this was before pentiums existed. Windows 3.1 would be a snail on that thing, Windows 95 is out of the question. DOS is prolly the answer.
 

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