The Whole Enchilada
Updated: 14-Aug-98
Status: Being reviewed

Please Note: The information in this document has just been translated over from the printed version (14-Aug-98) and is being reviewed. There are errors! This notice will go away once all the obvious errors are corrected. From there, this document will be upgraded over time.


Available RAM and Storage Comparison Chart

Model 100     1   32   y   y    y   y*        y      y     y
Model 102     1   32   y   y    y   y         y      y     y
Model 200     3   24       y        y         y      y     y
NEC8201       2   32                          y      y     y
WP2           1   24                    y            y     y

BP = Booster Pak
XR = extRAM
XR4 = XR4
RP = RAMPAC (*)requires special cable
RD = RAM Disk
TPDD = Tandy Portable Disk Drive
TPDD2 = Tandy Portable Disk Drive 2
COMP = Another computer

One of the most confusing areas for Model T owners is RAM (memory), vs. temporary storage, vs. permanent storage, vs. ROMware (Aka: Firmware) vs. option ROMware. As a fellow Model T user you need to understand these concepts. And I, as an expert on this subject, need to put it into terms you can understand ... maybe not the first time through, but eventually.

It's hard to know exactly where to start so I've decided to simply annotate a collection of facts. I am sure you will come to understand your options through these facts.

Memory vs. Storage
Memory is the work-space of the computer--much like the top of your desk. Storage is used for long-term, safe-keeping--just like a filing cabinet. Unfortunately, since the Model 100 also uses memory (RAM) for file storage, owners often over-trust memory with their data files, and never or seldom copy their files to storage (tape or disk).

Save your work in progress on a regular basis. Always keep your important files up-to-date, and out of the memory of your Model 100 when not in use. Keep only those files you are currently working with in the Model 100. And again, save your work in progress files to storage on a regular basis as you make important changes.

Capacity calculations
Throughout the following discussion, the term K is used. K equals 1024 bytes. A "byte" is equal to a character, e.g., A, Q, 4, %, are all bytes. People commonly ask questions about K, or storage capacity, in terms of how many pages of text will a certain amount of K hold. It's a reasonable question when K has no meaning. Let's say you have a 32K Model 100 (32 x 1024 = 32768 bytes). After system overhead--fancy words for RAM being used by the computer just to operate--you have about 29000 (actually 29638 bytes) bytes available; slightly less then 29K. Given the average page of text when printed with 1 inch margins on 8" x 11" paper in Pica (10 cpi (characters per inch) horz / 6 lpi (lines per inch) vert) you get about 2500 cpp (characters per page). Divide 29000 by 2500 and you get 11.6 pages for this example.

Model T's have built in software (ROMware - Aka: Firmware) in a permanent storage area called a ROM (Read Only Memory), with the ability to add more ROMware (option ROM). ROMware executes directly from within the address space of the ROM, thus leaving RAM (working memory) available for data file development, or BASIC and machine language storage and execution.

A brief run down on built in ROMware follows:

Model 100/102
The Model 100 and Model 102 include: A BASIC interpreter for development and execution of BASIC programs (creates and runs .BA files - Aka: Microsoft, tokenized files). A simple text editor with extremely limited print-formatting capabilities, called TEXT (creates and edits .DO files - Aka: ASCII files). A TELCOM program for accessing the built in modem at 300 baud, or external serial devices (including external modems) at up to 19200 baud (downloads and uploads .DO files). An ADDRSS program dedicated to accessing a TEXT-built file called ADRS.DO--TELCOM also accesses the ADRS.DO file for autodialing phone numbers. A SCHEDL program dedicated to accessing a TEXT-built file called NOTE.DO.

Model 200
The Model 200 includes all ROMware associated with the Models 100 and 102, with the addition of a spreadsheet program called Multiplan. The Model 200's internal modem is capable of tone dialing vs. the Model 100/102's pulse dialing modem. The OS (operating systems) allows for bank switching, and copying files between banks.

Includes all of the ROMware as Model's 100 and 102 with some differences in the BASIC command structure, i.e., Model 100/102 programs need to be modified to run on the NEC.

The WP-2 is a dedicated word processing computer. It's text editing program includes a dictionary and thesaurus, and a capable print-formatter; as well as an address book. ROMware includes a TELCOM program with xmodem capabilities--unlike all the other models--and a built in DOS (disk operating system) for accessing the TPDD2, or external computer emulating the TPDD2.

Base RAM
Model T computers are unique in that they use RAM as both a working area and a temporary storage area. Their RAM is expandable within strict limits. ROMware usually does not use RAM for operations. RAM-based BASIC (.BA) and machine language (.CO) programming is also available--these use RAM for execution, as well as storage.

Model 100's and 102's may be expanded to 32K (less OS overhead) in one, contiguous bank. You may not exceed the 32K barrier but you can add banks of 32K. In the past--a long time ago--a few 3rd party inventor/manufacturers, like American Cryptronics and PG Designs, made add-on, 32K banks (2x, 3x units). However, neither of these firms are still in the Model T marketplace; thus their RAM banks are no longer available. Today, the extRAM, XR4 devices by EME Systems, sold through Club 100, and the Booster Pak, offer RAM banks as well as multiple option ROM image, or physical, swapping/management.

Model 200's come with 24K in one bank, expandable to 2 more banks (3 total) of 24K each (less OS overhead). The OS (Operating System) within the Model 200 is already programed to use all three banks--if present, of course. Note: Model 200 RAM banks are separate; not contiguous, i.e., 3, 24K banks, not 1, 72K bank. The extRAM is available for the Model 200, giving it an additional 24K bank (4, total). The XR4 is not available at this time for the Model 200.

The NEC PC8201A offers users 2, 32K RAM banks (less OS overhead). Neither the extRAM nor the XR4 is available for the NEC8201. Booster Pak and rampac are not available for the NEC8201, either. Most all of our option ROMware is available for the NEC8201.

The WP-2 computer is limited to one, 24K bank (less OS overhead), leaving little room for temporary file storage. However, to its credit, the WP-2's OS (operating system) is programed to accept a 128K RAM disk chip. Available through Club 100, the 128K RAM disk chip is actually a storage area, only. You do not work in it, but use it like you would a disk drive, i.e., create your files in RAM, save a copy to the RAM disk chip, then delete the original file in RAM; thus freing RAM for more file creation.

Files may be freely copied to and from RAM and the RAM disk chip. Furthermore, the RAM disk chip is isolated from the cold, reboot process that wipes out all files in RAM, i.e., when the computer cold boots--for whatever reason--files lost in RAM, yet stored in the RAM disk chip, may be copied back into RAM from the RAM disk chip; and are as up-to-date as the last copy stored.

This is a 32K RAM (24K in the Model 200) that fits entirely in the option ROM socket. Under program control, the extRAM may be used as a RAM disk, or swapped as a RAM bank, or used as a ROM by copying stored ROM images from disk or rampac. ROM images swap quickly. So it's like having a multi-ROM bank when used in this manner.

The XR4 is exactly like having four extRAMs in one, 128K memory. Thanks to innovative packaging technology, it all fits inside the option ROM socket in less then 1/4 cubic inch, and draws less then 1 microamp from the Model T's internal backup battery.

You may configure each of the XR4's four banks independently as ROM-images, or as RAM-file-banks. The XR4MNU program, provided, allows you to set the bank of the XR4 that you need to be the Tandy's option ROM at any given time. With ROM images it allows you to activate or deactivate the images by name. With RAM banks, it shows you the bank's file directory and allows you to load and save files between XR4 and RAM (or even send files directly to a printer or to the serial port), rename and kill files, and even swap workspaces of files with one keystroke.

Booster Pak
Probably the finest RAM disk, and ROM holder/swapper ever created. The Booster Pak comes with 96K of RAM-disk storage, and the capacity to hold 11 more devices, i.e., 11, 32K RAM chips, or 11, option ROMs, or 11 RAM and ROM combinations.

The Booster Pak (available for Model 100 and 102, only) attaches to the entire bottom of your computer, raising it up about 1/2 inch. RAM and ROMs are easily added. And, unlike the extRAM and XR4, ROMs are added physically, not logically, Aka: image swapping.

The Booster Pak includes TS-DOS and X-Tel within its system ROMs, eliminating the need to purchase this ROMware separately. Furthermore, TS-DOS, X-Tel and BASIC include an extended command set for direct, Booster Pak RAM file access.

When working within the Booster Pak's OS, your files are swapped from Booster Pak RAM to base RAM automatically upon selection, then stored again upon exit. Thus, nothing is lost during a cold restart. Furthermore, files larger then 32K may be created within Booster Pak RAM, making it a great, database machine, or researcher's data collection machine.

The rampac is an external, battery-backed, removable, 256K storage module--like a RAM disk chip. It connects to the system bus of the Model 102 and Model 200, directly, and to a Model 100 via a special cable. The rampac comes with built in OS (operating system) software for saving, loading, renaming, and killing files on the rampac. When coupled with an extRAM or XR4, ROM images swap almost instantly. Note: Since the rampac is battery powered, and since it is critical that rampac uses never, ever remove or attach their rampac while their computer is on, we highly recommend storing files on permanent storage media (tape, disk, or another computer) for safe keeping.

Magnetic media storage
Yes, disk, other computers, and tape storage is still the best way of keeping a large number of files, and a good way to keep your files from being destroyed. After everything is said and done, large RAM, RAM disks, RAM banks, etc., are nice but nothing beats magnetic storage media (tape and disk) for safe, multiple file storage and access. Besides, every RAM-device mentioned herein may be considered only temporary storage. Thus, files will be lost to these RAM-based devices more often then files lost to disk or tape storage. These, of course, are words to the wise.

Note: All club 100 items include manuals and install guides
Note: All prices subject to change.

Item                                            Price
Model 100 8K ................................   29.00
Model 102 8K ................................   19.00
Model 200 24K ...............................   59.00
NEC 8201 8K .................................   29.00
WP-2 RAM disk chip 128K .....................   60.00
extRAM (software on paper) ..................   75.00
extRAMware TPDD/DOS/Mac .....................   15.00
XR4 (software on paper) .....................  169.00
XR4ware TPDD/DOS/Mac ........................   15.00
rampac ......................................  179.00
rampac Model 100 adaptor cable ..............   20.00
Booster Pak 96K .............................  128.00
Booster Pak 32K RAM .........................    6.00
ROM2/Cleuseau ROM .... 100/102/200/NEC ......   49.95
TS-DOS ROM (1) ....... 100/102/200/NEC ......   49.95
The Ultimate ROM II .. 100/102/200/NEC ......   89.95
Sardine ROM (1) ...... 100/102/200/NEC ......   49.95
Multiplan ROM ........ 100/102 ..............   49.95
CRDFIL ROM (2) ....... 100/102 ..............   49.95
  1. Available on disk version for use stand-alone or via The Ultimate ROM II (both TS-DOS on disk and Sardine on disk) or Sardine ROM (TS-DOS on disk) ........ 39.95
  2. CRDFIL PC available in DOS disk version .. 24.95

Item            Model T to desktop              Price
Lapdos II ....  100/102/200/NEC (1) to DOS ..   39.95
WP2DOS Plus ..  WP-2 (2) to DOS .............   79.95
100duet ......  100/102 (3) to Mac ..........   89.95
WPduet .......  WP-2 (4) to Mac..............   89.95
DeskLink .....  100/102/200 w/TS-DOS/BP (1)..   24.95
  1. Lapdos II and DeskLink on 5.25 or 3.5" disk (your choice when ordering). DeskLink requires TS-DOS on the laptop or within a Booster Pac. Lapdos II and DeskLink do not include cable or adaptor. Cable required for Model T to desktop (indicate either 25M-25F or 25M-9F when ordering). Adaptor required for TPDD or TPDD2 to desktop via Lapdos II.
  2. Includes 3.5" disk and 9F-9F cable
  3. Everything included. Model 200 and NEC users need LOADER to use 100duet with your machine ........ 4.95
  4. Everything included.