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Curiosity... A question for those old enough to remember

 
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RacerX



Joined: 03 Jan 2006
Posts: 333
Location: Twin Cities, MN

PostPosted: Tue Jan 08, 2008 8:41 pm    Post subject: Curiosity... A question for those old enough to remember Reply with quote

I've written a lot about all the things that you could have done with a Mac in the 1980s and 1990s, and have demonstrated (within my limited abilities) the quality of what could be produced on those old systems using old software.

To a degree, there really isn't anything all that remarkable about anything I have done as I could recall seeing such work being done back then. The only thing stopping me from having attempted most of that stuff when the hardware and software was current was the cost (which isn't an issue with stuff that old these days).

But here is the question...

Part of the reason I started using Macs was because I knew that they could enable people to do such things. For people who were Windows or DOS users of the 1980s and 1990s, what was it that you could do with those systems then, and what could you do with them now that cost isn't a barrier anymore?

I guess what I'm wondering is if you could actually do things on old Windows systems similar to what I can do on old Macs?

For example, my PowerMac 8600 came out in 1997. I use it for capturing video from tapes or DVDs, and can transfer back onto tape. I do video and audio editing on it, and I can do CG animation with that system. And that is not even bringing up all of the desktop publishing abilities of the system, or the web design and flash types of things.

So is there anyone out there who uses Windows NT 4 or Windows 98 on hardware from 10 years ago to produce stuff?

And if not, why not?
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helf



Joined: 29 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 8:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You'd have to be suicidal to use windows 98 for anything like that and NT4 was never meant to be used for stuff like that. It was a server OS. So I doubt many people use(d) it for anything like that Razz It's consumer hardware support was pretty lacking.
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mgtremaine



Joined: 17 Feb 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Closest to any of that I ever did was the video capture and conversion. In the early days 1995 -> 2000 we used Windows 95, Windows 98 to do various types of live and VHS captures using ATI-all-in-Wonder cards and some older cards that I forget the name of [stability was a huge issue] to capture and convert to Real Media and post online. We did this for a local news channel and some radio stations. Quality was so so, if I captured as pure avi and then converted I could almost get 8-10fps at super small size on the Pentium 233mhz super box that I built ;P [this was 1996]. Ah those where the days.

-MIke
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Thrax



Joined: 18 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was in high school in the mid-80s and my school was one the first to have a full mac lab. I was editor of the newspaper and becamethe first school paper in my city to have a full DTP layout.
Also since i had access to the laser printer i was able to print off assignments on the lazer in an age when the majority of people were using a typewriter or a dot matrix printer.
All the above was done in WYSIWYG something that was not common in the "pc" world.
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pentium



Joined: 23 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I still use my 8600 for Video editing however Avid VideoShop is horribly slow.
I still use a windows 95 system here every so often.
I used NT 4.0 for three hours and never again.
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rice0067



Joined: 07 Jan 2006
Posts: 66
Location: Malden MA USA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 10:34 am    Post subject: NT4.0 Reply with quote

NT 4.0 was awsome!
It was so fast, didn't crash and had that win95 interface. I loved it.
I used adobe premiere on it (dual PPRO 180mhz 256 meg ram.)
And Bryce!... photoshop 4 and 5.5 .. by the time NT4 came out graphics and video software was pretty mature.
Only problem was lack of USB support.
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nextchef



Joined: 17 Aug 2006
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Location: Missouri, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The SGI VW320 I used as my primary desktop back in the late 90's came with NT4, and it was rock solid. Don't know if that had more to do with the SGI system than the OS, but we had about 10 of them in use with very little problems that I can remember. That system would do video capture from the built in S-Video connection fairly easily as I recall. The guy next to me used it to make the corporate training videos and presentations, and he seemed to like it. He had a "double cube" workspace with all the cool toys; the A/V cameras, monitors and tape decks his job "required". :?

Not exactly a "generic PC" system, but it seemed to do the job for him running NT.

Chef
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Joined: 29 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2008 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Take back what I said about NT Smile I forgot about the SGI machines...
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neozeed



Joined: 15 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 8:13 am    Post subject: nt4 Reply with quote

I know Im in a real minority as I not only like NT 4.0, but I still use it. I run several NT 4.0 VM's and it's stable as hell with sp6a. I've had NT 4.0 servers that ran in production with SQL 6.5 and SNA 4.0 with uptime in years..

As long as you keep your installs 'simple' and single server functionality it's cool now as it's memory and disk footprint is a joke. And it runs super fast on modern machines with VMWare, Qemu or VirtualPC/VirtualServer.

Oh, I use it for Exchange 5.5, SQL 7, and a copy of Terminal server... Which is a different animal in it's own right.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

NT4 SP6a was actually pretty darn good Smile I ran it on my machine at work for over a year before they made me upgrade to windows XP... One of our AV servers ran it and its uptime was usually over a year. i just periodically logged in via VNC and checked it over.
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nextchef



Joined: 17 Aug 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 11:05 am    Post subject: Re: nt4 Reply with quote

neozeed wrote:
As long as you keep your installs 'simple' and single server functionality it's cool now as it's memory and disk footprint is a joke.


How true, not that even a full install took up that much space in comparison to today. My uncle is a musician, and he was able to get the NT4 install for his old recording rig down to 80Meg by stripping out everything but what he absolutely needed. It was not very useful for much else, since it had no networking support or many apps, but it just fit on the fast SCSI drive he wanted to use as a boot drive. Really neat setup with addon DSP cards for synthetic instruments and "light pipe"? cards to connect to the mixing console, hard disk recorders, and DAT audio drives. He never liked ProTools, so he did not go down the standard Macintosh route, and the equivalent Mac setup was much more expensive as well.

I guess this has become the "How much we love NT4" thread, but it does answer the question of if it could be used to "produce stuff" back then.

Chef
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neozeed



Joined: 15 Apr 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 6:44 pm    Post subject: Re: nt4 Reply with quote

nextchef wrote:
I guess this has become the "How much we love NT4" thread, but it does answer the question of if it could be used to "produce stuff" back then.

Chef


I guess I never 'produced stuff', I network stuff... And there was nothing comprable to MS SQL server, SNA Server, or Exchange for MacOS. And yes, I like shared calendars, global contact databases, multiple mailboxes etc etc that you don't get with the feebee stuff.

You really can't compare video editing to serving 4000 3270 sessions, or doing LU6.2 transactions with DCOM applications...
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blackcube



Joined: 27 Dec 2005
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Location: Sherman, Texas USA

PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've never been into content creation but I still use systems from that vintage daily. My EEPROM burning system is a Dell Pentium system running Windows 98 since the software with my PROM burner doesn't like anything with a HAL. My CAD station is a Dell Dimension Pentium Pro system running Windows 98 since I don't have 2000/XP drivers for my Kurta IS-1 graphics tablet or my Zericon and HI pen plotters and I'm running AutoCAD 12 for Windows which doesn't much like XP either. I have a Micron Netframe server running NT4sp6 with Services for Macintosh acting as a file server for all of my 68K Mac's. It's been up since 6/7/2006 when I moved into this house.

So I still use older Windows and DOS systems. My primary desktop publishing system is my NeXT Cube with the Dimension board and Framemaker for NeXT. Hell, I still occasionally use Wordstar 3.3 on my Commodore 128D running CP/M3+. I still remember all my <ctrl>k commands.

You know I've never tried to capture video from a camcorder or other source. My focus has always been on networking and information storage.
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Jenne



Joined: 06 May 2006
Posts: 338
Location: Switzerland

PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2008 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Windows....

I´ve been using 98 and XP for many years in audio production and sometimes video conversion. For some odd reason Steinberg´s Cubase and Nuendo was somewhat more usable within Windows than Mac for me. On the other hand the Macs I used worked pretty well together with Logic (I never changed to Apple Logic, though).

J
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