[Color Computer] Re:[coco] www on coco

Mike Pepe lamune at doki-doki.net
Thu Nov 9 10:21:26 EST 2006

George's Coco Address wrote:

Hey George,

Don't underestimate the complexity of this request. The TCP/IP stack is 
a very complex and sophisticated suite of interdependent protocols and 
programs. Xmodem and Ymodem are packet based, but are intended for the 
single purpose of moving files via serial connection.

Needless to say, if you're not familiar with how the whole process works 
you're not going to understand in a quick email, but trust me when I say 
that it would be a lot of work for little reward.

To handle the IP stack, and on top of that the PPP layer you'd need to 
talk to a dialup connection would be so painfully slow that I would 
seriously doubt the CoCo could respond to simple keepalive packets fast 
enough to convince the ISP that there's actually something working on 
the other end.

Writing out, reordering, and defragmenting IP packets on a floppy has 
it's own set of challenges, not the least of which is the fact that 
pretty much everyone has a halting floppy controller, etc. The latencies 
involved are so great that they would exceed the time to live (TTL) of 
the sender's packets and they would be assumed to be discarded.

The only reasonable way to get this to work would be with some sort of 
hardware device, as was discussed earlier, which would consist of an 
ethernet physical layer and an MCU with TCP/IP firmware which could 
communicate with the CoCo. However, there's really very little 
difference in my mind between doing this and just attaching the CoCo via 
  serial port and using it as a terminal.

By the way those little Ethernet MCU dongle things are pretty pricey, 
I've seen them go for about $300 each from Rabbit.

So, would it work? Maybe in theory, but for practical purposes, getting 
the CoCo on-line with dialup is probably not going to work. And even if 
you did, there would probably be so little available CPU time to run 
applications the experience would not be a fun one.

The practical upshot of all this is, if you want a computer with a slow 
IP stack, just use Windows. At least you don't have to write it.


> Frank(and all),
> My desire for sending and receiving email from a coco outweighs the need
> for a laptop. It's a passion.
> Meanwhile, I refuse to believe that a coco "Can't" do email on the
> internet. No one has ever explained exactly why it can't, other than
> something about "stacks" requiring too much memory.
> Since the internet and TCP/IP works on packets, what's the big deal? We
> just use a hard drive/floppy/ramdisk to make memory. The "internet" will
> wait for the next packet or a request for a packet and process it normally.
> I'm ignorant in this part, but logic tells me that packets are packets and
> a coco can send and receive packets.
> Packets are sent to the intended modern PC at a rate that the modems can
> handle. If a coco is on a slow modem(9600), then the IP can provide for 
> that
> and wait for the next request for a packet.
> I am constantly sending and receiving large files between my coco and this
> PC at 9600 baud using Xmodem and Ymodem, depending on the file types. These
> machines do it flawlessly and I can't see the problem. They use PACKETS!.
> If anyone can explain exactly why a coco can't do this email thing then,
> possibly, I will understand. Simply claiming it can't is not good enough.
> Please..... I'm not angry. I just want the TRUTH!
> Since I started work at my new job at a machine shop, I've discovered that
> they LOVE me because I am catching on and today, I actually wrote a program
> to build a part. I only made a few mistakes and my mentor showed me what I
> did.
> He indicated that he was impressed that I did so well.
> So why can't I get a handle as to why a coco can't do eMail?
> "If you think you can't then, you can't. If you didn't know you can't then,
> you can" ME!
> BTW. .
> CNC machines are really COOL!!!! Gene Heskett was right. Modern software
> and hardware is where it's at. If I needed to make a few hundred parts, 
> then
> this is the way.
> However, I do "One Off" parts at home, so my coco is the way to go with
> CNC. I can wait(and watch) until the product is done. My little dohicky(CNC
> center) is good to .0005/inch. Good enough for me..... as long as I can
> figure the math.
> George
>  > Publisher, "American Motors Cars"
>  > Magazine (AMC)
>  > For all AMC enthusiasts
>  > http://farna.home.att.net/AIM.html <http://farna.home.att.net/AIM.html>
>  > (free download available!)
>  >

More information about the Coco mailing list