Do chips just die???

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falen5's picture
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Hi All

Was writing floppys last night (after figuring out how to use adtpro audio) on apple iie. All was going well. Wrote several of the discs i need , disc utilities etc etc

then half way through a disc write the machine just froze.

did a reset - nothing just a screen of lines.

Today i started swapping chips with good iie. The cpu was dead.

Was not even sitting at the machine when it died. Been using this particular machine for a few days with no problem.

Do chips just die?

Same on another iie was working on last weeek. Several keys not working. Ended up having to remove actual key switch's, disassemble and clean contacts.
Again all was going great. I did not do anything with power on, already learnt that lesson by blowing a GI AY-5-3600-PRO

Anyway with just 1 key left to go, i powered up the machine and it boots, but this time it wont boot into basic. Its just get a flashing asterix. I think its the programming mode
But wont Boot into basic. Tried Ctrl B, reseated all the chips I could find, still cant get it to boot into basic.

Do these chips just get tired?.......I can tell you I am....spending hours at these machines, getting them going, then they just die again.

Im starting to get scared of switching any of them on at all!!!!!

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Re: Do chips just die???

I can tell you that a faulty power supply can cause a lot of bad things to happen. I would recommend buying a rebuild kit for your power supply's.

macnoyd's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

Re: Do chips just die?

Get tired ... No
Just die ... Yes. And for varying reasons. Environment, temperature, manufacturing defect, and deterioration due to the 3 noted.
Nothing is forever. (well... almost nothing. Wink

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falen5's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

Thanks for the reply's people.

I recapped all the power supply's and not just the 2 foil caps i went and replaces all the caps on the low voltage sides as well.

Machine was writing floppys with adtpro... surely if the volume was too high it would not of blown a 6502.

I put it down to age. I sure as hell dont work as well as i did 20 years ago haha

i wrote out the game elite. its a game i never played and said i would conquer it on the appleii.

it loads to the cockpit screen and when you press a key the screen gets loads of horizontal lines and freezes. tried 2 seperate copies. same thing. what gives?

i need to play games......im a 46 years old kid again and i need to play a game on this machine before it dies again!!

Im working on my 3rd iie now. this one has been dead from day 1. I have a 12 volt short to ground at the power supply connection. took out all the removable chips, still short.

there are many chips soldered onto this board could be one of them i guess.

any typical components that go , around the power supply connector to cause a short.

Oh Id say you guys just love seeing a 'newbiee' join the forum to ask the same questions all over again for the millionth time!!!!

be good!!

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Re: Do chips just die???

I can completely empathise with you. Unfortunately the more machines you collect, the more things will inevitably go wrong! I had the aforementioned keyboard encoder chip die on me overnight in an Apple //c, while it was powered off.

Can you load games via the Apple II Game Server? http://asciiexpress.net/gameserver/

These load in over audio.

Without knowing the full story, I would focus on one machine and cannibalise the others to get it working. Swap components and power supplies until you find a configuration that works.

falen5's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

great link cwj_wilko. I love the old school way of loading - waiting for ages to load ,then an error to pop up!

I have 4 X iie's. Had 3 of them going. Now have 2. waiting on more chips.

as for that keyboard encoder chip it seems if you even look at the keyboard circutboard while powered on it will blow!!.

ah sure its all fun, even when stuff blows, cause you have to wait for the new chip and when you get it it comes back to life

any recomendataions on simulators games - my god there are millions of titles for the apple ii - had no idea how much software was available

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Re: Do chips just die???

CWJ_Wilko wrote:

I can completely empathise with you. Unfortunately the more machines you collect, the more things will inevitably go wrong! I had the aforementioned keyboard encoder chip die on me overnight in an Apple //c, while it was powered off.

I have experienced this too.

Is the encoder chip on the iic the same as on the iie?

falen5's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

this is the on from the apple iie insanitor that ive had to replace

GI AY-5-3600-PRO

blew it spraying contact cleaner into the key switch while turned on. VERY tempremental i guess

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Re: Do chips just die???

Thanks for the info.

You sprayed it when the computer was on?

Have you tested the spray liquid for resistance?

Maybe it's partially conductive.

speedyG's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

thats a fascinating list of different actions to blow up a computer...

speedyG

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falen5's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

Typo there insanitor

sprayed it while it was OFF. had the board in my hand. sprayed it, worked the key like crazy, plugged it back in, turned on and chip blew. Its the stuff that evaporates real quick. Guess i should of waited a bit longer.

discovered i could just desolder the 2 pins and the entire switch slides right out. much safer.

anyone know how to start elite!!!!......massive problems here in Ireland haha

speedyG's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

Hello falen5,

i've expleined this problem several times.....
i've published here one or 2 threads about the topic of copy protection
so just a short repeating here:

You must be aware that nearly 40 % to 50 % of the
uploaded diskimages are just junk...
it's caused by the fact that a large bunch of amateurs don't
realize the traps while generating a image....

nearly 50% of the ancient software was distributed on disks
with some kind of disk copyprotection system....
the weakness is that ADT does NOT detect such protection systems
and does NOT issue a disclaimer note about the presence of such system...

It just reads - and if it believes that it did read something correct
then write something same that it also believes to be correct....
but then in fact generates a faulty image....

for example: if a copy protection instructs the drivehead to perform
a halfstep move to read the info in a track also written in a halftrack
then the same move at a disk generated by ADT will tell the head to
perform that move too but reading the generated track after that move half step ahead
will result to a faulty read.... and there is a bunch of other copy protection
systems that will cause similar errors.... ( for example manipulation of drive disk rotation speed )

those amateurs just upload in good believe such images without
previous verification if that image really is working correct...

if they realy would have performed that task correct
they first would have been forced to disable the copy protection system
by detecting the system used, then deprotecting ( cracking ) that disk copy protection
system and after the verification that the disk is really deprotected
then uploading the deprotected image....

some guys even believe that if a disk is copied by parameterlist
of a programm like copy II Plus or nibbles away or locksmith in trackmode
that then the disk is deprotected.... that's a wrong conclusion !

In fact it's just another protected disk - the only difference is that
the disk copyprotection was not able to abort the copy programm with error screens
but instead generated a working copy with same protection like previously present....

And ADT does not remove such protections...

speedyG

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falen5's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

ahha...good to know speedyG

I have about 50 old floppys. Some work some dont.
Im only writing to the floppys that dont work after a sucessful format

Is there a good place to upload images of anything useful i find. Any software i find i google it to see what it is. So far its common software from what i gather

or a list of software people are looking for. Would be good to have that handy as well.

cheers man

speedyG's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

primary place for upload is still asimov.
some guys have private sites with images too...
in general such sites have software on focused topics...
i've collected such links a while....
but the trouble with the privat sites is - that if the owner passes away
the sites vanish few months later because the domain name is no longer prolangated...

therefor in such cases i changed habit and immediatly download the entire content and
then later perform a crosscheck against the contents in my own archives....

the resulting horror at the other side:
my Apple archives exceed 500 GB at one working PC....

once in a week the entire archives are backuped to a RAID5 system....
and once in a year it's backuped to an external archive of a friend....

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falen5's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

my god !!

500 gigs!!!. Speedy you hold the work of 30 to 40 years of thousands and thousands of people, and you keep it alive. Respect! If you look at the time put in alone you are talking millions and millions of hours of work by software developers. From reading , Elite the game , took 2 years work!!!

68K macs were always my thing. I have found some software titles and drivers that were missing and upload them for others. Drivers are always missing and people are always looking.
all it takes is one person to find one , upload it, and many many devices come back to life.

Keep up the good work man

speedyG's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

the real work is the scanning....
still have boxes with magazins to be scanned and bundles to pdfs....
nearly 3000 disks 5,25 and 700 to 800 disks 3,5....
all only Apple II series stuff ( II till IIGS ... no mac stuff )

this year i'm starting to generate archive of my interface cards ( nearly 350 )
that's to much to upload all to asimov....
started some at the former old site... here just an example
but be aware the most links are now broken and have to get changed....;
http://www.appleii-box.de/003_appleboxdownload.htm

several entire anuals of magazins at asimov have been uploaded by me...
( in special those from europe )

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Re: Do chips just die???

Yes. Chips just up and up and die for no apparent reason.

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speedyG's picture
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Re: Do chips just die???

Hello falen5 and those other members reading this thread,

the simple short answer to the question has been given above.
For those who seek for more explenative answer here a ( still simple )
answer with more detailed facts:

Before starting here a reminder to 2 different experiments at school in
lesson of nature science:

1. If you pull a piece of iron along a magnet the iron can get "magentized" by
ordering internal the atoms of the iron in one direction and then the iron
becomes itself magnetic...... but after a while the iron looses this character
again because the atoms turn back to "unsorted" structure with various directions...
The speed of the "turnback" to "unsorted condition" is also dependent to temperature.

2. If you mix up water with another liquid then seemingly a mixture is stabile.
But if that mixture is set apart and rests for a while the water and the other
liquid will separate apart from each other again. The speed of this separation
is also dependent to temperature and can also be forceed by use of centrifuge.

Both effects are related to the fact that atomic structures are not really "static" stabile
and depend to surrounding temperture and even also change character of elements
that apear to be solid, fluidly or gaseous because even in solid material
atomic structures are in movement
except at temperature of "absolut zero".

Next we should repeat short the process of manufacturing digital chips.....:
First silicon is melted at high temperature to liquid character and then
it is slowly cooled down and generating crystals that then are cut to extreme
thin sheets that are called "wafer".

Then that "wafer" is put in a chamber and the wafer is covered by a maskmaterial
that has been cutted with a laser to have specific slots and holes. Then another
stuff is added at extrem high temperature where that stuff is gaseous and hits
the surface of the wafer and connects to the wafer in extreme thin layer and
thereby changes the electronic character of the silicon. This is repeated several
dozends or hundreds of times with different kinds of masks different gaseous stuffs
and thereby "builds" a kind of microscopic "skyscraper" of layers of different
materials with different electrical behaviour above each other.

Then finally that wafer is cut apart in small squares and each square then is a
final chip. And then another robotic machine connects at specific junctions
incredible thin wires to that chip and connects that wires with metal legs that
we later call "pins" and covers the entire thing with coating material that we later
call the "case" of the chip that then gets labeled by a printing machine.

The next point to remember is what we remember as the term "power disaption".
When the chip gets electric power and starts to work the temperature that
we see outside at the case is not the same like the real temperature inside
at the surface of the wafer chip. The temperature at the wafer chip is higher
than at the outside of the case of that chip.

The temperatur of a chip in operational mode is dependent to different factors:
complexity of the chip,
speed at which the chip is working ( clocking ) and
the amount of power used for operation ( voltage and current ).

The more complex a chip or
the faster the speed of operations or
the higher the voltage or current used for operations
-> the higher the temperature at the chip !

This conditions also enable again that processes of change in character
( like explained above with magnetism ) or
effects of separation like explained in second example.
This you might call a kind of "ageing" of a chip.

You also may assume that the more complex a chip is and the higher the speed of it's
operations or the temperature at which the chip is working -> the faster is the process of "Age"

After thousends of hours of working condition the separation and change of character
have proceeded that far, that in electronic view that chip will fail and not work anymore
in the predicted limits. That's what you may call the "death" of the chip.

But to switch back to the general part of the initial posting there is another point
to think about:

We may call that the "Black Adder" ( TV movies with Rowan Atkinson ) humor.
By "a kind of forensic view" there are similarities between humens and chips....

At a old-age home you'd expect a rather constant number of residents to pass away
in a specified period of time resulting from the age of that residents....
Within a specified age period you'd expect some kind of "statistic normal amount" of
pass aways and a spread within that group would be caused by different kinds of life
- living under pleasent conditions prolongates life while worse environment causing earlier death....

Thats quite similar to chips and computers.... a number of computers manufactured
in a specific amount of time only fail at different times resulting from different
handling and environment at "worktime".... if the environment is pleasent and the
computer and chips have not been overtressed they will age nearly same fast and fail
nearly in same period of time....
but if the chips have be working in bad environment and at "heavy load" conditions
they will age faster and fail earlier.

Like mentioned above you might expect at the old-age home a kind of "statistic amout"
of "pass aways" in a period of time like "per year"...
- but if the amount of deaths rises dramatically above that statistical expectation -
it's time to get "distrusting".....
maybe the environmental conditions have changed that way that it causes residents
to die faster / earlier or some person in that facility is dangerous....

similar to chips and computers.... if a larger amount of chips and computers that have
been manufactured in different time periods start to fail in very short time
and in the same place - it might be usefull to think about the environment....

Places with old electrical installation and old filter technic give less "healthy" supply voltage
from the wall outlet with far more spikes than in modern environment and in areas with
lots of lightning strikes while stormy weather and bad old filters can cause also bad spikes
that even can partially pass old power supply filters.... such "noisy power supply" can kill far more fast
old chips and computers than if they would have been working in modern area with good filtering
than good power source out of the wall outlet...

In such case it might be recommmended to switch between working area and wall outlet
some kind of new filter technic to keep away such hazerdous influence from that old chips and computers...
At least it's then time to waste some thoughts about possible environmental problems....
like bad grounding or similar problems

speedyG

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Re: Do chips just die???

Static electricity is like a hammer denting the road and making a pot hole. At first, traffic keeps moving. The hole is small. Cars drive over it just fine Soon, with time and weather changes, the hole gets bigger. Traffic slows. The chip heats up. The sweltering drivers no longer traverse the road and traffic backs up. Pot hole expands into a sinkhole. And the circuit is broken!

And chips can grow whiskers that can and do cause short circuits. NASA has done research into it and deemed it a hazard for long-life spaceborne circuitry. Yup. Real wisps of metal the grow from the substrate to adjacent wiring. This even happens on "life-size" parts too and are sometimes visible with a simple 10x jeweler's loupe. Ever run your hand across the unfinished aluminum base of II series? The rough sports are where whiskers have formed or the sharp edges where they will form.

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Re: Do chips just die???

You might try re-seating the chips. Apple has had a history of their
chips slowly un-seating from their sockets (especailly bad in A3's).
Rather than doing the "drop seat" thing, you should GENTLY re-seat the
chips in their sockets. Also check the pins.

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