DEC PDP-11/35 #2

Donated on 5/25/22 by the family of Spider Boardman.

The PDP-11/35 and the PDP-11/40 are 16-bit processors that share the same backplane and boards. The PDP-11/35 has a smaller 20-slot 10.5" chassis and the PDP-11/40 has a larger 36-slot 21" chassis. These processors have 16-bit registers and memory, and can directly address a 28 kW of memory. With the optional KT11-D Memory Management Unit installed it can address 124kW of memory. The upper 4kW of address space is reserved for Unibus I/O devices.

This system has almost all of the processor options installed. The KE11-E Extended Instruction Set option adds instructions for fixed-point multiplication, division, and shifting, and can handle double-precision 32-bit data. The KE11-F Floating Point Instruction Set option adds instructions for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of floating-point data. The KT11-D Memory Management Unit increases the address space from 32kW to 128kW. The MMU also adds the ability for the processor to run in Kernel or User modes, and support for multi-user operating systems. When in the User mode the processor cannot access the peripherals and cannot execute certain instructions. This prevents a program running in User mode from crashing the operating system. The KJ11-A Stack Limit option is normally installed with the MMU option. It limits the depth of the stack address, and will stop program execution with a processor trap.

The system looks like it was assembled from available parts. The Unibus chassis is a BA11-KA, which the DEC documentation says is an empty chassis without a power supply. This style chassis was used for the much later design PDP-11/34 systems. It will be a challenge to mount the 11/40 front panel to the BA11 chassis. The RICM has a nearly empty PDP-11/35 chassis, so it might be easiest to use the boards and backplanes from this system and the the other PDP-11/35 chassis.

The right cabinet contain the PDP-11/35 processor chassis and a VR14 XY display S/N RK03507, the same model that is used in a PDP-12. There is a RX02 dual 8" diskette subsystem and nothing else in the left cabinet. There is plenty of room in the processor cabinet, so we could move the RX02 diskette subsystem and then only have a single cabinet system.

We received a DEC LK11 button box with this system, but didn't know what it was. Al Kossow @ CHM told us that it connects to the M7060 LK10 VT48 push button control board that is in the system. This button box was also used with a VS60 graphics terminal. We might be able to modify the Lunar Lander and SpaceWar! games so that they can be controlled by the LK11 button box.

We should be able to run the RT11 operating system from diskette using the RX02 diskette drives that are connected to the RX211 diskette controller. That would provide enough storage to run some games. We could also add an RL02 10 MB disk drive to the system.