With Nicky away again for the evening I’ve spent most of it in the garage trying to consolidate some of the Beeb kit. Top priority has gone to replacing the 20MB MFM hard disk that was running the Level 3 Econet fileserver software, which was done quite simply once I’d worked out the logistics of it all.
By fiddling with a few A4000s I’d been given, I ended up with a machine capable of running the Level 4 fileserver software in multi-tasking mode. Coupled with a 270MB hard disk and 4MB RAM, I copied it over and started it running. One of the nicer differences from earlier versions is that it doesn’t use a partition, rather it uses the native ADFS filesystem (or whatever filesystem is running, so I guess in theory you could chain a network to another network) – so pretty much with a couple of hours of work I’ve managed to get a mechanism of archiving 5.25″ floppies over to a more reliable disk system, on a box which will read 1.44MB floppies (which was the hardest bit of tonight, finding some of those!).
The A4000 also has an Atomwide NIC in it – the plan being to bridge it over via NFS to the Linux box, which is something that the Level4 fileserver seems to be good at doing (presumably to do with the RiscIX stuff and the Unix workstations).
Next step is to remove the older fileserver at the end of the garage, and get the rack cleared so I can start racking some of this stuff ready for the next BBS to go in there. Hurrah!