The Multiplexer

This device brings the power and flexibility of larger systems to your 8-bit. The Multiplexer is a collection of cartridge interface boards that allow up to 8 Ataris to read and write to the same drives (typically a hard disk), access the same printer(s), and talk to each other. It is the first practical networking system for the Atari 8-bit computer.

One "master" computer (any 8-bit) is equipped with the master Multiplexer interface. Then up to 8 "slave" computers hook up to this master, each having their own slave interface. The slave interface consists of a cartridge that plugs into the cartridge port. It has its own socket on the top so you can use whatever cartridges you desire with the system.

The "common" peripherals (things that are to be shared) are connected to the master. On each slave, all disk and printer I/O is routed through the master so no extra disk drives are needed. The master computer can be configured in any manner you wish. You may have certain peripherals local to the slave or routed to a different number on the master. Note that serial ports (R: RS232 interfaces) are not multiplexed. All slaves are independent and do not need to have the same program running on them. To see the Multiplexer at work, give our BBS a call!

This system is excellent for BBS SysOps. You can be using your hard disk(s) while still running your BBS uninterrupted. Another example for its use is in a classroom situation or anywhere a disk needs to be shared by many people. This is an excellent programming and debugging tool as well! (NOTE: Not all BBS programs will run concurrently.)

The Multiplexer sells for $149.95 for a master and two slave units with cable. Additional slave units are $49.95 each. Add $5 for shipping/handling.


Link to Mux Docs