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First Commodore 64 LAN Party 224

Posted by timothy
from the dude-are-we-late dept.
Leif_Bloomquist writes "The world's first Commodore 64 LAN party was held at the Cincinnati Commodore Computer Club 2008 Expo last weekend, where the new multiplayer C64 game NetRacer was unveiled. The setup consists of up to eight Commodore 64s with Ethernet cartridges and a central server written in Java running on a PC. The game is also playable over the Internet."
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First Commodore 64 LAN Party

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  • by spir0 (319821) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @04:54PM (#24077715) Homepage Journal

    Is New Zealand a terrorist country or something? I got this:

    You are not authorized to view this page
    The Web server you are attempting to reach has a list of IP addresses that are not allowed to access the Web site, and the IP address of your browsing computer is on this list.

    Please try the following:

            * Contact the Web site administrator if you believe you should be able to view this directory or page.

    HTTP Error 403.6 - Forbidden: IP address of the client has been rejected.
    Internet Information Services (IIS)

    Technical Information (for support personnel)

            * Go to Microsoft Product Support Services and perform a title search for the words HTTP and 403.
            * Open IIS Help, which is accessible in IIS Manager (inetmgr), and search for topics titled About Security, Limiting Access by IP Address, IP Address Access Restrictions, and About Custom Error Messages.

    • Re:high security? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Orion Blastar (457579) <orionblastar@gmail . c om> on Sunday July 06, 2008 @06:10PM (#24078243) Homepage Journal

      I think since the C64 event is in the USA that it blocks out foreign IP addresses. Try using a Web proxy from the USA and see if that works, or Use Tor [torproject.org] to connect to a USA Tor server.

      I'll mirror the location of the event if you want information on it:

      "05/26/2008: To pre-pay admission and table fee(s) for the C4 Expo, please Paypal your payments to cmdreclub@iglou.com.

      When making payment, please ensure you put what you are paying for

      in the comments field of the Paypal transaction.

      The receipt for the Paypal transaction MUST be presented at the

      admission desk in order to gain entrance to the Expo!!

      Door Charges: $10/person or $15/family

      Selling tables: $15/table or 3 for $35 (The hotel charges $10/table in addition for power usage.)

      T-shirts: TBD

      The Cincinnati Commodore Computer Club is proud to present the 3rd annual C4 Expo.

      June 28-29 at the Drawbridge Inn

      located at:

      2477 Royal Drive
      Fort Mitchell, KY 41017"

      I think you can use that email address to ask them why they blocked your IP. Possible some IIS administration script that locks down security also blocked foreign IPs.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by pdcull (469825)
      Have you tried using proxify [proxify.com] to get in? I find that often works to give me a US IP address...
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by topnob (1195249)
      Same in Shanghai, China, I mean why would you block china.... oh right...um carry on...
  • Hooray! (Score:5, Funny)

    by FlyingSquidStudios (1031284) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @04:54PM (#24077723) Homepage
    I urgently await Jumpman deathmatches!
    • Re:Hooray! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Orion Blastar (457579) <orionblastar@gmail . c om> on Sunday July 06, 2008 @06:19PM (#24078305) Homepage Journal

      You haven't played Bard's Tale, Pirates!, or Donkey Kong, until you played them on the C64 using the tape drive. :)

      Jumpman was great, but I liked a game called Wizard that let you design your own levels and your own spells on a custom floppy disk and challenge your friends to deathmatches on that. It was like Jumpman but you could throw fireballs or stop your enemies from moving, or become temporary invulnerable for a short while.

      • Wizard was amazing, it's the first thing I load up whenever I get a hankoring for commie lovin.'
  • Yes but (Score:5, Funny)

    by eclectro (227083) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @04:56PM (#24077741)

    Were there any girls there?

  • by fyrie (604735) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @04:56PM (#24077743)

    I have one of those rrnet ethernet devices for the C64. They are great fun. I tried to make a post to a phpBB and it took me about 40 minutes to navigate to the thread I wanted to post in, then it crashed. O sweet glory.

    btw, http://www.c64web.com/ [c64web.com] is hosted on a c64.

    • by mnemocynic (1221372) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @05:01PM (#24077805)

      btw, http://www.c64web.com/ [c64web.com] [c64web.com] is hosted on a c64.

      And after posting that on /., there is now one less functioning c64 in the world.

      • by fyrie (604735)

        That didn't take long. It must only be able to handle 64 simultaneous connections.

      • Yeah, posting that link wasn't the brightest thing to do, nor was it very nice to whomever the owner of it is, unless it's the OP's own server and he wanted it to turn into a melted pile of goo.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Lost Race (681080)

          ... server ... turn into a melted pile of goo.

          Yeah, a fully loaded 6510 puts out an awesome amount of heat. Not.

          • Joke, I'd like you to meet my new friend Lost Race. Lost Race, meet Joke.

          • ...migrate it's electrons quite neatly when under stress. I noticed this several times when I stressed the VIC chip on a C64 (using a simple poke 53280,i flashing program ; yes, even BASIC can make processors suffer ;)
    • So.... (Score:5, Funny)

      by Xest (935314) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @05:13PM (#24077887)

      Is that site painfully slow because it's been Slashdotted or because it's running on a C64 ;) ?

      More importantly, what happens when a C64 gets Slashdotted, does it start chewing up tapes or melt or anything?

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Orion Blastar (457579)

        Based on my past C64 experience, the power supply overheats and the system shuts down. I was always trying to look for a power supply that didn't overheat. Sometimes putting a glass of ice water on top of it helped it not overheat.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by toejam13 (958243)

        It completely depends on if it is stock or not.

        There is an add-on board for the Commodore 64 called the SuperCPU that features a 20 MHz WDC 65816 processor. It also supports up to 16MB of direct memory (w/o bank switching). Recall that the 65816 uses hard-wired 1-byte ops as opposed to the microcoded 2-byte ops that the 68000 uses, so for many instructions, the 65816 is much faster cycle-for-cycle.

        That said, I've heard of rumors of somebody making a prototype add-on board using a MC 68EC020, hanging the o

        • If you are replacing the CPU with one with an incompatible instruction set and adding more RAM that the original hardware can't access then I think you are hard pressed to say that it's still a C64.
    • by Dachannien (617929) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @05:31PM (#24078013)

      btw, http://www.c64web.com/ [c64web.com] is hosted on a smoldering heap of slag.

      Fixed.

    • What are you talking about? I'm posting this from my C64 with no problems!

    • PhpBB software is buggy, and sometimes when a web administrator tries to make mods to it, they end up making it buggier. Hence the crash.

    • I have one of those rrnet ethernet devices for the C64. They are great fun. I tried to make a post to a phpBB and it took me about 40 minutes to navigate to the thread I wanted to post in, then it crashed. O sweet glory.

      Wow. I guess you have a far lower threshold for fun than I.

  • by stevedmc (1065590) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @04:58PM (#24077759)
    Vista must be pretty bad if people are switching to C64.
  • Talk about retro! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by flajann (658201) <flajann&linuxbloke,com> on Sunday July 06, 2008 @04:59PM (#24077777) Homepage Journal
    Yeow! I may have expected an Amiga club, but C64? Man, does that bring back memories!!!

    I did a lot of cool stuff on the 64 way, WAY back, using Forth (remember that language?).

    Some computers will never die. No matter how old. LONG LIVE COMMODORE!!!!

    • Re:Talk about retro! (Score:4, Informative)

      by hitmark (640295) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @05:13PM (#24077885) Journal

      sadly, commodore of today is a shadow of its former self...

      http://www.commodoregaming.com/pcshop/home.aspx [commodoregaming.com]

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by kvezach (1199717)
        That's not Commodore, it's a corporate body snatcher wearing the skin of the fallen Commodore.
    • C64 certainly never will die, not as long as people enjoy playing those old games. But the hardware will wear out eventually, and nobody's making any more, so it's off to emulation land. Or do true blue C64 hackers sneer at emulators?

      • by vidarh (309115)
        That depends on what you mean by "making any more". There are 6510 compatible CPU's still being manufactured, and there are emulations of the rest available for FPGA's, and there's the C-One [c64upgra.de] based on FPGA's + a compatible CPU that aims for full compatibility with the C64 and a number of other old home computers.

        Personally I'll stick with emulation, though the C-One looks like something it'd be fun to own, so maybe if/when they get something a bit less beta...

        • by fm6 (162816)

          I'm talking about a system, you're talking about a component. You might as well talk about the Ford Model A still being "made" because you can still get parts for it.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by bhtooefr (649901)

            There's always the C64 DTV...

            That's based on a C64-on-a-chip, designed by Jeri Ellsworth... and has solder pads ready to go to add floppy drives and a keyboard.

            • by fm6 (162816)

              That's still not a complete system. "Computer on a chip" is still not a computer.

              • by bhtooefr (649901)

                I said it's based on the chip.

                Take it out of the box, plug it into power and a TV, and you're running C64 games natively.

                If you want to run stuff that didn't come with it, or use a keyboard or floppy drives, that's when you have to break out the soldering iron.

      • Well the Wii can emulate the C64... If you live in Europe. Anyone else can't get the games.
        • by fm6 (162816)

          C64 emulators run on a variety of platforms [zzap64.co.uk]. Most old gaming platforms have thriving communities of emulator users. Games are readily available online. Technically copyright infringement, but there's not a lot of enforcement, since the software has little or no commercial value.

          • by CastrTroy (595695)
            With the introduction of virtual console for Wii, couldn't one argue that there is quite a bit of commercial value in these games now? I can't believe it took them so long to do it. I was playing emulated game-boy and NES games in the 90s. 10 years later you can finally get them legally by paying for them. Anybody have any idea how well those virtual console games are selling. I can see games like SMB 3 getting a lot of sales, but a lot of them I can't see anybody wanting to actually pay for.
            • by fm6 (162816)

              "Quite a bit" is probably an exaggeration, but you do have a point.

          • Games are readily available online. Technically copyright infringement, but there's not a lot of enforcement, since the software has little or no commercial value.

            But I would much rather buy my games then pirate them. Because unlike music what sells well with games determines what gets released more. (So if more RPGs are sold then FPS games, more RPGs will be made)

            • by fm6 (162816)

              I too prefer to pay for my software. But if owner doesn't even give me a chance to pay without making me pay for a lot of stuff I don't need, I feel no obligation to refrain from downloading a pirate copy. I shouldn't have to buy a Wii just to play an old C64 game.

    • There's rumors of a new Commodore OS in terminal Beta.

  • by hey! (33014)

    Junis will be able to download that porn.

  • Networked C64? Cool, wake me up when you get a Beowulf cluster of these!
  • 64 Commodores ought to be enough for anyone.
  • by XO (250276) <blade.eric@gmPOL ... om minus painter> on Sunday July 06, 2008 @05:53PM (#24078133) Homepage Journal

    I can say that I have actually done this before, back in the 80's. Not using Ethernet, as I don't think there were any Ethernet hardwares available at the time for the Commodore .. but I've done it. Wired several Commodores together, and played multiplayer games.

    • by Captain DaFt (755254) <captain_daftNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday July 06, 2008 @06:32PM (#24078397) Journal

      Back about 1986, I actually surfed the net on a Commodore 128.
      The local community college got a spanking new server hooked up, and students were allowed to dial in in to get schedules, some class material, whatever. (I think it was still Arpanet back then, but it was years before World wide web)

      Anyway, I logged in (at a whopping 1200 baud), looked around (After a bit of tweaking, Commodore had lowercase and capitals switched in ascii, plus none standard characters) and actually made it to a few net sites. (IBM, some national Community college site, a couple of others)

      Wasn't interested, it was slower than most BBS's I could get to, had almost no graphics (and none that I could view), and no content I was interested in at the time, So I logged off and didn't get back to the net until 1998. Things sure changed in a dozen years!

      Oh, I wasn't a student there, just heard about it and was curious. Online security? Some things haven't changed much!

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by mikael (484)

        It's amazing how things change in 10 years. Back in the mid 1990's, getting access to the university from home required a 14K baud modem with PPP, with a university modem pool of two modems.

        10 to 15 years later, and every student can just sftp or ssh to their university account through broadband internet. Some even have their own PC security cameras set up so they can watch their own room from anywhere on campus.

  • I'm happy for them (Score:4, Interesting)

    by blind biker (1066130) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @06:03PM (#24078211) Journal

    I'm sure these guys (and gals?) had a ton of fun. I see a lot of comments of the "what a bunch of dorks"-kind. I don't think they're any more dorks than any person who has a hobby and likes to associate and share his experiences and passion with like-minded folks. Don't over think it - it's just socializing and fun, nothing else.

    As for the C-64: I have several of 'em, and as soon as it becomes crystal clear which Ethernet card is the dominant (we're close) I'll be picking up one. I have networked weird stuff into my network already (Sony NEWS, Netwinder, old DOS PC/packet driver etc.) why not add one of my C-64s.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by pclminion (145572)

      I'm sure these guys (and gals?) had a ton of fun. I see a lot of comments of the "what a bunch of dorks"-kind. I don't think they're any more dorks than any person who has a hobby and likes to associate and share his experiences and passion with like-minded folks. Don't over think it - it's just socializing and fun, nothing else.

      Call me a dork -- I have three C64's, two of which were purchased in the mid 80s. So I was collecting them before it was even cool to do so. They are among some of my most preciou

    • They are probably just jealous Speccy owners still bitter to the very end about making the wrong PC choice in the 80s, it's completely understandable.
      • It's that time of the year? I mean, the Spectrum vs. Commodore flamewar ;o) Just kidding, but those do happen rather regularly on comp.sys....something-or-the-other. I used to have much fun reading those threads. Mostly because they were really in good spirit, in spite of all the flaming that was going on.

    • I'm sure these guys (and gals?) had a ton of fun. I see a lot of comments of the "what a bunch of dorks"-kind. I don't think they're any more dorks than any person who has a hobby and likes to associate and share his experiences and passion with like-minded folks. Don't over think it - it's just socializing and fun, nothing else.

      Normally I might have unloaded on the people in these pictures but I just came home from a holiday weekend camping trip at the local state park. After watching a bunch of slack-jawed dolts blowing their fingers off with fireworks for the last few days, pictures of garden-variety nerds actually make me happy.

    • by mikael (484)

      I like the idea of retro-programming 1980's home computers with the knowledge that we have now.

      These machines had so much potential and so much style in the simplicity of the design of the system ie. keyboard + IO/ports + TV = computer.

      I really wish that the manufacturers had been able to update their systems with current CPU's and graphics chips and still keep their operating systems, rather than everything being swallowed up by one OS maker.

  • by Penguinisto (415985) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @06:16PM (#24078277) Journal

    * so I take it that no one could cough up the highest Crysis framerate figure? (yes, I know, I KNOW! ...but it seems to be all-to-common for LAN-goers to brag on framerates these days).

    * Finally! I can bring my machine-du-jour and not have everyone stare at it funny because it's not a Windows box! (I always brought either a Linux box or a Mac).

    * How d'ya taunt on chat in the thing? "'LOAD * 8,1' this, n00b!" doesn't quite have a ring to it, y'know?

    * How many LED's and uber-liquid-cooling heatsink rigs can you jam into a C-64 case, anyway?

    * Well, rebooting would still be just as common...

    /P

  • Hate to be a spoilsport, but we had an operational C64 LAN back in 1983. I worked for RTC, an early computer firm (long since gone), and one of the products we developed was the "Multi Link", a LAN adapter that networked C64s in a star topology. It was originally designed for use in educational settings, but needless to say, as a bunch of early hackers we quickly got some games running multi-player.

    We also used to access the Internet using a c64, but that's a story for another time.
  • by anorlunda (311253) on Sunday July 06, 2008 @07:25PM (#24078711) Homepage

    My first personally owned computer wasn't a C64, it was a Commodore Pet. That doesn't make me *that* much older than the C64 crowd, does it?

    The Pet was also the first computer I ever used that booted itself when I turned on the power. My reward for turning on the the switch was a HELLO? prompt. All other computers I used at work before the Pet required me to enter a bootstrap program in binary before they would start the OS.

    In Pet Basic one could do wonderfully fun things, especially with the character graphics. My kids loved the games I wrote. I don't recall ever buying any software for the Pet. Wrote it all myself. It was great fun.

    For some strange reason, the Commodore Pet is always forgotten when people write about the pioneering PC days.

    • by BitterOak (537666)
      Yes, the first computer I used was a Commodore PET model 2001 with 8K of RAM and a cassette deck built into the unit right beside the keyboard. (My father was a teacher and he was able to bring these computers home from school on weekends and summer vacations.) We soon upgraded to a PET 4032 with a 2031 disk drive. We purchased our own C64 system shortly after that, and although the games blew those of the PET out of the water, I kind of miss the old PETs.
    • I have a bunch of PETs still, certainly rugged beasties. I liked a lot of the games in that they were so simple they relied more on the user's skill (learned my angles and coordinates from many a PET game)

      Also was one of the first home computers to play multi-computer games:
      http://www.portcommodore.com/flashindex.php [portcommodore.com]

    • All other computers I used at work before the Pet required me to enter a bootstrap program in binary before they would start the OS.

      That would be PDPs you used at work then?

    • by Panaqqa (927615) *
      Actually, I had a Commoodore PET 2001 back in 1979. That machine got me started down my current path (IT, software development). My PET had 8K of RAM, cassette device, and the old style "chicklet" keyboard. Piece of trivia: PET stood for "Personal Electronic Transactor".

      At the ripe old age of 15, I developed a number of games for the PET and actually sold them through a company called "Instant Software" that was affiliated with Kilobaud Magazine (later "Microcomputing"). The $200-$300 US royalty cheques t
  • ...reads off the chart.
  • My God, let it die already. How long can it possibly be interesting to continue to use these?
  • Spectrum too soon! (Score:4, Informative)

    by Alioth (221270) <no@spam> on Monday July 07, 2008 @02:45AM (#24081107) Journal

    Hopefully we can do the same with the Sinclair Spectrum soon - I've almost completed the prototype ethernet card for the Spectrum. The prototype is working - I've had it connect to IRC, but there are some things to finish on the library and the board's CPLD.

    Picture is here: http://spectrum.alioth.net/doc/index.php/Image:Itlives.jpg [alioth.net]

  • A C64 lan party is a bit like doing a quarter-mile drag race with "big wheel" plastic trikes... funny for the first 30 seconds and then really stupid and boring for the next half hour until it's finally done.

  • Legend has it that Mark Twain once said "When the end of the world comes, I want to be in Cincinnati because it's always twenty years behind the times." That seems about right.
  • by glgraca (105308) on Monday July 07, 2008 @08:32AM (#24082881)

    That proves that 64KB really ought to be enough for anyone.

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