Bell Tech tape drives

Adam Messer messer at drivax.UUCP
Wed Apr 11 10:18:16 AEST 1990

To Dimitri Rotow.
All others please forgive me for posting this message, but I have not been
able to reach Dimitri through mail.

    Hello Dimitri Rotow. My name is Adam Messer. I am a developer of an
operating system named FlexOS for Digital Research. Several months ago I
purchased a Bell Tech tape drive for evaluation with my operating system.
Our goal was to develop drivers and software that our development staff and
our customers could use. When we received the drive we found that it came
without the specs and only had unix drivers and software. When I called the
company we purchased the drive from they said it was a discontinued model and
they would not send us any specs or driver source. Even a set of DOS utilities
would have been helpful because we have a DOS compatible product called
DR-DOS. At least our staff would have some way to backup/restore, and I
figured it wouldn't be too hard to reverse engineer the DOS utilities. I got
the telephone number of Intel tech support from a recording at the old Bell
Tech number. After several tries I reached someone who was nice enough to send
us a set of DOS utilities. The reverse engineering process has proved to be
very hard.

    About two months ago I remember reading a series of articles concerning
Bell Tech tape drives. One of the articles was from you and stated that
you might be able to give away specs and/or driver source. A reply to your
article from Steve Friedl said that if we write to '[address]' you might
send info. Unfortunately I was not able to figure what '[address]' meant.
Our VAX is not 'well connected', and we have to use strange paths to send
messages to almost anyone. I tried several times to send you a message, but
they were all rejected.

    This tape situation has become very important to my company. Many of our
customers are demanding tape backup. The company we ordered the drives and
controllers from have enough left to satisfy our current demand. Anything you
could send in terms of specs or Unix/DOS source code would be greatly
appreciated. The manual that came with the drive says 'XTC Tape System'. The
board is a full length long board. I don't have the info with me right now,
but if you could help us and you need more info, I can easily get it.

    I will check for 'news' from you in this group or, our mailing address

Digital Research
70 Garden Courte
Monterey, Ca. 93940

    If you do send anything in the mail please write 'Attn. Adam Messer' on
the package or our shipping person will send the package to our manufacturing
building 'the Black Hole of Calcuta'. Again, many thanks for any help.

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