KUBOTA Computer/Stardent AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

Computer Zoo, Society of Classic Computer Preservation and Restoration

KUBOTA Computer (Stardent) AVSstation Titan Vistra 800 is a UNIX workstation that use Intel 80860XR (i860) as main processor. This system is largely based on Oki Electric OKI Station 7300. Computers with i860[3] are rarely found: examples of these computers include Intel iPSC/860[2] and Paragon XP/S, and Geometry Engine in Silicon Graphics Reality Engine[1] graphics system. After a KUBOTA system is donated to us, we have disassembled it and examined internal components for possible damages. Luckily no damages are found (even the harddrive is alive), and we took pictures of guts in the system.

The front panel of the system. Nothing much to see here.
KUBOTA Computer AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

The hard-to-read logo of the system. A computer name should be much shorter.
KUBOTA Computer AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

The I/O ports on the back of the chassis are: DEC-style coax-in-D-shell RGB connector, 50-pin narrow scsi, AUI, 2× DE9 RS-232C ports and DIN8 keyboard connector.
KUBOTA Computer AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

The systemboard. The memory modules are 30-pin SIMM. The SCSI bus is controlled by a WD33C93A-PL controller, and the Ethernet controller is Intel 82596DX. UART is Zilog Z85C3008PSC.
KUBOTA Computer AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

Closeup on the CPU. The i860XR is rated at 40 MHz.
KUBOTA Computer AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

The video board. Three RAMDACs are used, one for each of red, green and blue channels. Under this RAMDAC board, there is another board full of VRAMs.
KUBOTA Computer AVSstation Titan Vistra 800

Software

After repairing the power supply, the system successfully booted. I used a DEC video cable to connect the system to an SGI CRT that accepts Sync-on-Green. The ROM says it is copyrighted by Kubota Computer Inc., Stardent Computer Inc., Oki Electric Industry Co., Ltd. and Intel Corporation.
Screenshot of Vistra 800 PROM monitor
The operating system on the harddrive was UNIX System V/i860 Release 4.0 Version 3.0.1.
UNIX System V/i860 Release 4.0 Version 3.0.1 boot screen
We even have X11 running, but there isn't a connector for a mouse on the computer. Maybe standard serial mouse would be fine?
X11 on Vistra 800

References

  1. Kurt Akeley. 1993. Reality Engine graphics. In Proceedings of the 20th annual conference on Computer graphics and interactive techniques (SIGGRAPH '93). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 109-116. DOI=10.1145/166117.166131
  2. Berrendorf, R. and Helin, J. (1992), Evaluating the basic performance of the Intel iPSC/860 parallel computer. Concurrency: Pract. Exper., 4: 223-240. doi: 10.1002/cpe.4330040303
  3. David Perlmutter and Michael Kagan. 1991. The i860™ XP: 2nd Generation of the i860™ Supercomputing Microprocessor Famlly. In The 3rd Symposium on High Performance Chips (Hot Chips). Memorial Hall Auditorium, Stanford University.

18-Feb-2013 H.Tomari.

tomari at is dot s dot u-tokyo dot ac dot jp / htomari at mail dot ru PGP public key (81466E97)

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