Canon A-200 III HD20
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The Canon A-200 PC with MS-DOS 3.3 is a 1980s-vintage machine. It has a V20 CPU (running at 4.77 or 8 Mhz), 640k of RAM, a 20-megabyte hard disk, a 360k 5.25-inch diskette drive, and a Hercules mono green screen.
The mouse is installed as a Microsoft-type two-button serial mouse on COM1: it can be used in Framework III and Fritz chess. The keyboard is as originally supplied, with 10 function keys in two columns on the left hand side of the keyboard. The hard disk has been re-formatted using the Canon diagnostics "conditional format” which circumvents any bad sectors, before using FDISK and FORMAT in MS-DOS.
A selection of the DOS Power Tools (second edition) has been copied to the hard disk. These "utilities that DOS forgot” augment those from DOS itself. In particular, the full-screen editor for text files is TED not Edit (still less Edlin), while useful directory listings can be obtained by the DDIR4 command rather than Dir. Among the other utilities in the relevant directory: RENDIR is useful for renaming directories; ZCOPY enables copying of files from one machine to another via the serial port; ECOH echoes a line of text to the screen in reverse video; PRN2FILE enables files to be printed to disk instead of to paper; DCACHE is a disk cache facility; BLANKINS is a screen blanker; CALC and CARDFIL2 more or less speak for themselves. There are many more utilities in the Power Tools collection, which can be installed if desired; they are described individually in the DOS Power Tools book.
GW Basic 3.22 (BASICA.EXE) is installed in its own directory. Framework (developed by Ashton-Tate) is an integrated "office” or "works” type of software, which includes word processing, spreadsheet and database facilities, as well as its own FRED (FRamework EDitor) programming language. Fritz is the original published version of what is now one of the leading chess software programs. Diagnostic and utility software as originally supplied with the machine is also included, in two further directories.
The HCI "front-end” is provided by the PFS Preface menuing system. To exit from an application back to the main menu, use Quit from Framework (disregard message about no files being modified), Quit from Fritz (followed by two more [Enter]s), System (typed command, with [Enter]) from Basic, Exit (or Abort) from Ted, or any key from the listing of installed Power Tools or the Root Directory listing. Use Alt-X to exit Preface itself in order to control the machine from the command-prompt.
An alternative front-end would be the Gem graphical interface, provided as part of the Timeworks DTP package – here included but not installed to the hard disk. The Z-Nix Super Mouse software also includes a fairly simple menuing facility.
All the software is provided with the machine on original 5.25-inch diskettes. Manuals and/or books for all the applications are included, as well as those originally supplied with the machine.
Before moving the system unit, use the SHIPZONE command to park the hard disk mechanism.
This machine is fully working and was very kindly donated by Larry Stuart-Jones. This is complete with all software and manuals.
PC: Canon A-200 III HD20
Keyboard: Canon A220-UKB84
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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH4827. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.