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Author Topic: A Stupid Computer Question  (Read 443 times)

Ben

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A Stupid Computer Question
« on: October 15, 2021, 10:56:25 AM »

Man, I used to be one of the guys here answering these questions, but I have been away from nerd stuff way too long I guess.

I found this old hard drive in a box. It's from a laptop I owned probably circa 1992. Just out of curiosity, I wanted to see if I could access it. While likely nothing important, there are probably old txt, dbf, and similar files on it that I could probably read.

Problem is, I have no idea what this connector is. It looks kinda like scsi, but I don't think so and don't know my old timey connections anymore. Any ideas?

"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

MillCreek

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2021, 11:01:02 AM »

_____________
Regards,
MillCreek
Snohomish County, WA  USA


Quote from: Angel Eyes on August 09, 2018, 01:56:15 AM
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Ben

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2021, 11:05:14 AM »

Hmm. I was thinking scsi was wider. This one is like 1.25", and I thought scsi was closer to 2-2.5". I may have some old scsi cables in some other stored box somewhere here. I'll have to try and dig them up.
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

RocketMan

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2021, 11:07:24 AM »

That looks almost like a serial SCSI connector.  Heavy on the "almost" because I don't think that's what it is.
See this link:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SCSI_connector#Internal

Most typical SCSI connectors are 'D' shaped.  The one in your image is clearly not that shape, either.  Looking at it further, is that connector an adapter of some type?  Can you gently try to pull it off?   There may be an old 40 pin IDE connector under it.  I ran into a few of those years back.
“Don’t be so open-minded that your brains fall out.” - G.K. Chesterton

Conservatives see George Orwell's "1984" as a cautionary tale.  Progressives view it as a "how to" manual.

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How many Democrats does it take to fix a problem?  No one knows because it's never happened.

cordex

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2021, 11:08:31 AM »

MillCreek is right but it isn't the most common SCSI type cable.  I'm pretty sure it's a CE50 or 50 pin card edge female connector.

Ben

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2021, 11:12:05 AM »

It might have an adapter. The stupid thing seems to be "permanently" installed in it's enclosure, but I might be able to pry the enclosure off without damaging the HD. It almost looks like there is a ribbon cable squished in there, which might go to an IDE or other connection.
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

Brad Johnson

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2021, 11:26:47 AM »

Looks like a Telco trunk connector, but I'd need to do some verifying before hanging my hat on that.

Brad
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RocketMan

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2021, 11:29:00 AM »

It might have an adapter. The stupid thing seems to be "permanently" installed in it's enclosure, but I might be able to pry the enclosure off without damaging the HD. It almost looks like there is a ribbon cable squished in there, which might go to an IDE or other connection.

Those two screws to either side might be all you need to remove.  Can you take a more angled picture showing the underside of the connector?
“Don’t be so open-minded that your brains fall out.” - G.K. Chesterton

Conservatives see George Orwell's "1984" as a cautionary tale.  Progressives view it as a "how to" manual.

My wife often says to me, "You are evil and must be destroyed." She may be right.

How many Democrats does it take to fix a problem?  No one knows because it's never happened.

WLJ

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2021, 11:31:29 AM »

Looks like a type of IDE PATA pin adapter many laptops used. Bet if you pull it off you'll find IDE pins underneath. Sometimes they just pull off, sometimes there's a frame to unscrew first.  Toshiba was especially fond of them. Bet I have few in a box somewhere.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2021, 11:45:57 AM by WLJ »
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WLJ

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2021, 11:36:24 AM »

"Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us".
- Calvin and Hobbes

WLJ

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2021, 11:44:09 AM »

"Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us".
- Calvin and Hobbes

230RN

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2021, 11:48:01 AM »

MillCreek is right but it isn't the most common SCSI type cable.  I'm pretty sure it's a CE50 or 50 pin card edge female connector.

My first thought was that it was a mother board connector to a drive controller card, and IIRC, the drive connected to the controller inside the box.  I too am rusty on this stuff.

I have a buttload of old 5" flloppies and 3" "hard" floppies which contain information I'd like to recover (some from Apple machines, some from IBM machines).  I too failed to realize that storage advances would seal up those old discs forever.

Same thing (tech advancements) just blocked my beloved Internet Explorer 11 (heart icon) from accessing APS and I had to go to Brave to get on for this post.

<snif>

Terry, 230RN

cordex

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2021, 11:52:35 AM »

WLJ, that's the 44 pin PATA variant, not the 50 pin card edge SCSI.

WLJ

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2021, 11:55:02 AM »

Ah, Miscounted the pins.

Oh wait, you were referring to the photo. Just posted that as an example, there are variations.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2021, 02:07:58 PM by WLJ »
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Hawkmoon

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2021, 12:46:50 PM »


I have a buttload of old 5" flloppies and 3" "hard" floppies which contain information I'd like to recover (some from Apple machines, some from IBM machines).  I too failed to realize that storage advances would seal up those old discs forever.


You can buy USB external 3-1/2" floppy drives, and you can buy adapters to run old 3-1/2" drives from a USB port. For some reason, though, there are no USB 5-1/4" drives. Like you, I have a bunch of old floppies with data that I'd like to recover, and I can't find any way to do it.

WLJ

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2021, 12:54:46 PM »

"Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us".
- Calvin and Hobbes

Ben

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2021, 01:24:05 PM »

I actually was able to get it all the way out of the enclosure without busting anything. Looks like IDE to me. Now I just gotta find a decent USB adapter on Amazon.

"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

RocketMan

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2021, 02:03:46 PM »

Yup, 44-pin IDE.  Should be easy to find a cable or adapter.
“Don’t be so open-minded that your brains fall out.” - G.K. Chesterton

Conservatives see George Orwell's "1984" as a cautionary tale.  Progressives view it as a "how to" manual.

My wife often says to me, "You are evil and must be destroyed." She may be right.

How many Democrats does it take to fix a problem?  No one knows because it's never happened.

lee n. field

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2021, 02:26:07 PM »

Man, I used to be one of the guys here answering these questions, but I have been away from nerd stuff way too long I guess.

I found this old hard drive in a box. It's from a laptop I owned probably circa 1992. Just out of curiosity, I wanted to see if I could access it. While likely nothing important, there are probably old txt, dbf, and similar files on it that I could probably read.

Problem is, I have no idea what this connector is. It looks kinda like scsi, but I don't think so and don't know my old timey connections anymore. Any ideas?



1992  Probably ATA.  I remember some oddball stuff from the time, but  probably ATA.  I bet you'll see a more familiar double row of pins if you remove the connector you see in the picture.

I have a USB to ATA adapter that could be used with a laptop ATA drive.

What does the label on the drive say?  make and model?
In thy presence is fulness of joy.
At thy right hand pleasures for evermore.

lee n. field

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2021, 02:27:28 PM »

That looks almost like a serial SCSI connector.  Heavy on the "almost" because I don't think that's what it is.
See this link:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SCSI_connector#Internal

Most typical SCSI connectors are 'D' shaped.  The one in your image is clearly not that shape, either.  Looking at it further, is that connector an adapter of some type?  Can you gently try to pull it off?   There may be an old 40 pin IDE connector under it.  I ran into a few of those years back.

From that time, the typical SCSI drive connector would have been a 50 pin ribbon cable.
In thy presence is fulness of joy.
At thy right hand pleasures for evermore.

lee n. field

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2021, 02:31:43 PM »

I actually was able to get it all the way out of the enclosure without busting anything. Looks like IDE to me. Now I just gotta find a decent USB adapter on Amazon.



Yes, that is exactly what I was expecting to see.   

I have a copy of a PC Reference pocket book right here, that dates from that time (copyright 1993), that I could probably look up the drive in the very unlikely chance "the Innernetz" can't tell you.
In thy presence is fulness of joy.
At thy right hand pleasures for evermore.

Ben

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2021, 02:35:28 PM »

What does the label on the drive say?  make and model?

Quantum
Quantum Europa
540AT, P/N EU54A011
5v, 0.5a
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."

lee n. field

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2021, 03:18:44 PM »

Quantum
Quantum Europa
540AT, P/N EU54A011
5v, 0.5a

540 MB.  I bet its newer than 1992.
In thy presence is fulness of joy.
At thy right hand pleasures for evermore.

RocketMan

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #23 on: October 15, 2021, 03:22:11 PM »

From that time, the typical SCSI drive connector would have been a 50 pin ribbon cable.

Yep, that's why I said "almost".
“Don’t be so open-minded that your brains fall out.” - G.K. Chesterton

Conservatives see George Orwell's "1984" as a cautionary tale.  Progressives view it as a "how to" manual.

My wife often says to me, "You are evil and must be destroyed." She may be right.

How many Democrats does it take to fix a problem?  No one knows because it's never happened.

Ben

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Re: A Stupid Computer Question
« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2021, 03:23:32 PM »

540 MB.  I bet its newer than 1992.

Yeah, might be. Maybe late 90s? Though I know that around 1998 I went to Gateway instead of buying computer show no name laptops.
"I'm a foolish old man that has been drawn into a wild goose chase by a harpy in trousers and a nincompoop."
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