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SUN-Keyboards with 8-pin connectors, looking for PS/2- or USB-adapters

Discussion in 'Sun Hardware' started by Frank Wißmann, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. Hi all!
    I got 5 SUN-Keyboards with a propriatary connector (8-pin male) and I
    need an adapter to use it on my computers. Is there any manufacturer out
    there other than this: http://www.vpi.us/usb-sun.html? I also found a
    resource on the web telling me how to manufacture it for myself but I
    would prefer a professional solution. Any hints, friends?

    Greetings

    Frank

    --
    GU d- s:+ a+ C+>$ UBS>$ P L- !E--- W N+@ !o K--? !w--- O !M- !V- PS+ PE
    Y? !PGP- t+ 5 X !R tv- b++ DI !D G e h+ r- y?

    When pack meets pack in the jungle and no one will move from the trail
    wait till the leaders have spoken. It may be fair words shall prevail.
    (Rudyard Kipling)
     
    Frank Wißmann, Nov 19, 2013
    #1
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  2. $64 seems cheap for the solution. StarTech also has one for $63-$100
    for a whole KVM solution. I had some that were $100 way back when.

    But, the cheapest and easiest solution would be to throw your Type-5
    keyboards away and buy some Type-6 or Type-7 USB models instead.

    eBay has a lot of 6 of Type 6 USB for $40.

    (Note, there were both a USB and Type-5 interface version of the Type-6
    keyboard, so you'll want to be careful on eBay).
     
    Doug McIntyre, Nov 19, 2013
    #2
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  3. Frank Wißmann

    DoN. Nichols Guest

    I agree. It is not a trivial conversion. (And beware of
    keyboards made for the Solbourne computers -- which look a lot like the
    Sun keyboards of the period, and which use the same connector, but the
    pin allocation is sufficiently different so if you plug a Sun keyboard
    into a Solbourne S4000D or S4000DX, or a Solburne keyboard into a Sun
    SS-1 SS-1+ or SS-2, or later ones which use the mini DIN-8 connector,
    you will blow a fuse. On the ones explicitly named, they are bi-pin
    fuses which plug into sockets, but on later machines (e.g. SS-5, SS-10,
    SS-20), they are surface mount devices and supposedly require a trip
    back to the factory for repair.
    Preferably not throw them away, but offer to trade them with
    someone who keeps and runs the older Sun boxen.

    However, if you want a challenge, try building one using one of
    the postage stamp computers available. You'll need a USB interface
    (easy to get) and need to roll your own keyboard interface. And you'll
    need to spend some time decoding the key-down and key-up signals for
    each keycap, and put some state into your machine to convert the various
    combinations into those for other keyboards, I suspect that the codes
    are standard for the USB keyboards, with Sun simply using more of the
    codes than most other makers. I know that A Type-6 keyboard works fine
    both on a Mac Mini with OS-X 10.6 and an Intel box with Windows 2000.
    (The '<>' key on the Sun keyboard serves as the "cloverleaf" key for the
    Mac Mini, and as the "Windows" key for Windows boxen.

    Note that some of those pins are for the mouse, which plugs into
    the underside of the keyboard and carries through the keyboard cable to
    the computer.

    Out of curiosity, has anyone been able to use the "PDF Manual"
    link on that page?
    And also beware that Sun keyboards come in two flavors (for
    English, at least), aside form the interface. There are the "Word
    Processing" ones, which have the "Caps Lock" to the left of the 'A' key,
    and the "Control" key down in the bottom left-hand corner, as is common
    on PC keyboards (plus some punctuation keys relocated), and others (the
    "programming" keyboard, which I prefer) with the "Control" key to the
    left of the 'A' key, and the "Caps Lock" at the bottom left-hand corner
    of the main keyboard. (I would really love to have a way to switch that
    particular key off, as I never hit it intentionally -- except to turn it
    off if I have accidentally turned it on. :)

    Looking on eBay, I see the first hit being a lot of 25 Type-6
    keyboards which they label as "PS/2". I'll bet that those are really
    the 8-pin mini DIN which Sun used on older machines, not the 6-pin with
    a rectangular key pin which are used for PS/2 style keyboards on Windows
    boxen and the like. I think that the part number for the one I like is
    3201272-01, and I think that "-02" ends the "word procesing" style,
    which you may prefer if you are going to use it on PCs with Windows or
    the like.

    O.K. An easier way to tell them apart from the photos: On the
    "Programming" keyboard, there is a two-wide key just above the
    three-wide "Return" key. (This is the "Backspace" key.) On the "Word
    Processing" keyboard, the the Backspace key is on the top row, with a
    1-wide keycap just above the "Return" key.

    It looks like the lot of six is of the "Programming" style.

    Now -- it says "Lot of 6", and a few lines down,

    "Quantity [1] 2 available"

    So -- is that two keyboards, or two lots of six? From deeper in, it
    appears to be a lot of six.

    Enjoy,
    DoN.
     
    DoN. Nichols, Nov 20, 2013
    #3
  4. s/away/in my direction/

    iff they're US Unix layout
     
    Volker Borchert, Nov 21, 2013
    #4
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