Personal Computer Museum, Canada's Videogame Museum

Cordata PPC

Cordata PPC

Speed12 MHz
Memory512 KB
Hard Drive20  MB

What's this?

Release Date: 1/1/1987
Manufacturer: Cordata
 
Donated By: William Morris
 
This is one of those rare machines to come along that not too many people know about. We *think* it's an XT portable machine with a 9" screen but we're not sure on the speed. The model # (PPC-400-25) suggests that perhaps it's a 25 MHz machine but if it is, it's probably not an XT.

The machine uses a Seagate 20MB hard disk. Although the screen is monochrome it's actually a CGA graphics adapter built in.

If you know more about this machine, please contact us.


User Comments
Jakeman on Sunday, September 25, 2016
No one has mentioned it-- the plastic in the 1980s was a lot lighter, closer to a khaki color. The machine looked good! Also, under the plastic you had a lot of metal shielding. So there were actually two layers to the thing. Man, it weighed a lot. I had a SixPackPlus running on my machine. Remember MultiMate? I used to write papers with it. Circa 1985.
Robert Reid on Saturday, July 30, 2016
I still have my machine mfd by Corona Data Systems but sold under Sperry name. 5 1/4 mono screen, 512Kb RAM, single 5 1/4 disk drive, 40MB HDD. Original disks IBM PC Dos 1.1. Now running MS-DOS 6.22. Fully backed on diskettes. Lol.
Gerry on Tuesday, July 19, 2016
I just purchased one today for resale. Works perfect..if anyone's interested let me know.
Sam Brown on Saturday, June 18, 2016
I had one of these branded Corona Data Systems, identical to the one shown here. It was a 4.77mhz XT and could take an 10MB Hard Disk (A 20MB disk would work up to 11MBs in and then start getting lost with whirring noises). As has been pointed out already, the screen font was absolutely gorgeous. If anybody has one of these machines still working, I would be very interested in extracting the font data from the ROMs. A beautiful machine but prone to having the keyboard controller blow if the keyboard is plugged/unplugged when the power is on. The keyboard itself was very nice too, very professional feel. The machine weighed a ton though.
John Miller on Monday, April 21, 2014
Trying to get my old Cordata/Corona computer to boot up after all these years. Screen comes on and memory test is successful ... yet, get message of "disk boot failure" ... computer goes to "A" drive .. but will not complete boot. I have the 5 1/4 inch DOS disks that it came with. Not sure if the problem is the DOS disk or the floppy drive not reading the disk. Any ideas? Anyone have a disk for booting? I have plenty of blank/formatted 5 1/4 disks so you could make me a copy. Also have a lot of other 5 1/4 software. Can also contact me at floridamiller@verizon.net
Patrick Devine on Thursday, April 03, 2014
I had on of these machines in the 1985. It was a 4.77Mhz 8088 XT computer, which I eventually upgraded to having an NEC V20 chip to boost the speed. I seem to remember the graphics were monochrome CGA, but it had an absolutely fantastic font in text mode. It came with a 5 1/4" floppy drive, as well as a Seagate ST225 20MiB RLL hard drive which if you replaced the RLL controller with MFM you could get 30MiB out of it.
Mike Yarrow on Sunday, June 30, 2013
I worked for Corona Data Systems from 1983 to 1985 in their factory in Westlake CA. I worked on the assembly line and then was promoted to the lead assembly foreman. It came standard with 128K of memory and could expand to 512K by filling in 3 rows if IC memory chips. No hard-drive or mouse. I was there when it went from DOS to MS-DOS operating system. It cost about $2,500.00 with 128K and about $3,200.00 with 512K. I remember when it ran at 1 MHz and then it got 10% faster by going to 1.1 MHz. Corona Data Systems, at first, only had a desk top version, then the portable version was produced later.
John Miller on Saturday, June 15, 2013
I'm trying to locate the 3.6 v battery for the calendar clock in my old Corona PPC-400 ... Can't spot it inside .. and the schematics are not helpful in physically locating it. I want to boot it up .. and am concerned that the old battery is corroding things.
Joe Jiampetti on Saturday, February 09, 2013
Man i was too cool for school when i brought this home in 85! wow a real computer in the home with a printer no internet but you could do your taxes on it write a letter, accounting etc. those floppy disks were for file storage
dave metz on Friday, November 09, 2012
I have a CORDATA PORTABLE PERSONAL COMPUTER Model PPC-400-25 by Cordata Tewchnologies, Inc Made in Korea Two floppy drives-----but I had loaned it to a friend many years ago and he returned iot WITHOUT THE STARTUP DISC. Does anyone have a "spare" startup dics? Contact me at davehobby@machlink.com....Thanks--It was working well but has not been plugged in now for many years (decades??)........Thanks, any information on how I might find startup disc would be appreciated. I( loved the darn thing!
Cristian on Saturday, June 09, 2012
It is an XT. The machine came delivered with a version of DOS and Basic. The original model came with 2 360K floppy drives. I upgraded mine with a Seagate 20 Meg hard disk. A few years later I added an external CD ROM (in those days CD ROM drives were the size of toasters and were top-loading)! I started my consulting business on this machine in 1985 and I'm pleased to say that I have worked for myself ever since. I actually lugged this machine (appprox. 35 lbs.) around the US and Canada on consulting jobs. I still own both the Cordata PC and the CD ROM Drive. I am not in the habit of keeping old computers, but this one has sentimental value.
Hugo Jimenez on Friday, August 19, 2011
I was a Mexican grad student at Yale University arriving there in 1989. I was interested in computers and I had owned previously a Commodore 64 and an XT clone. My research work involved computers (computational chemistry) and I worked in Digital Workstations and VAX computers but I did not have much money to buy a computer for me. In 1990 a grad student in a different research group was offering a luggable Corona Data Systems PPC400 for $50.00 and I took it (Corona Data Systems was later renamed Cordata, so my computer was older than that shown in the photograph, instead of "Cordata" it read "Corona"). Despite the fact that it was already an "old computer" (there were already beautiful MacIntoshes everywhere), I loved that "little" thing right away. The text display was gorgeous, much better than the standard monochrome CGA displays that I had used before; the graphics display even if monochrome, had a much better resolution than CGA). It did not have a hard drive, only two 360 kb floppy drives. It had an 8088 Intel chip running at 4.77 MHz and 512 kb of memory. I did manage to "upgrade" it by exchanging the processor for a NECV20 and adding an 8087 math coprocessor; I also added additional memory (in an expansion card) that took it to a whopping 740 kb! I exchanged both floppy drives (I did bring those with me back to Mexico in a box of computer stuff and threw them away just last year), one for a 1.2 Mb 5" floppy drive (had to exchange the floppy controller as well) and the other for a 60 Mb 5" hard drive. I also put in a 9600 bps modem (very important for me because the main function of the computer was as a text terminal through the Kermit software). I also upgraded the OS to MS-DOS 5.0 and had to adapt a keyboard for it because the old one started having problems (the cable of the original keyboard had a non standard RJ25 connector; I had to exchange the socked in the computer for a DIN connector). I used it for writing with the old PC-Write processor. I even did some BASIC, Pascal (even graphics), and FORTRAN programming on it, until I gave it away after I purchased a Gateway 486 computer. A few years ago the computer was still operating, but nowadays I do not know. Seeing this picture brought to me a lot of nostalgia... Regards
Gordon on Thursday, April 14, 2011
I was a Quality Engineer for Cordata (formerly Corona Data Systems) of Newbury Park, CA from 1984-1986. My role was to clean up the MRB (discrepant material) area and improve supplier quality. This included a couple trips to Korea to work with Daewoo who started building the product turnkey for us. The Jan '09 post below states the company was sued by the bear company which is not true (why would they care?). We were sued by Smith Corona Typewriters. More notably we were sued by IBM because the owner had literally copied their Bios. Cordata was later sold to Daewoo for pennies on the dollar but the owner did get a new car and plane out of the deal. I got a "luggable", like the one pictured, but mine had two floppies and an internal 33MB HD (I’ll never fill this up, Ha!) along with a dot matrix printer for my severance. They were the ones I used on the job. Still the computer served me well for several years and the experience I got working with overseas contractors was priceless.
Kirt Olson on Wednesday, September 22, 2010
My Cordata was a Cordata AT with similar appearance, but definitely an AT class machine. Mine contained a 20 MB HDD and a 5.25" 1.2M flopy. I used it until the monitor failed in the mid-90s. I ran it as a terminal on dial-up to the University of South Florida modem bank where my account ran Pine for email and Lynx for web browsing (text only). One thing I recall is that the external monitor specs for color were not readily available scan rates. I simply ran the green screen in the box.
Danny on Wednesday, June 02, 2010
It's a 8086 box running at 6 mhz that came with 512 standard and was upgradable to 1mb with no way to use the memory above 640k. The name of the office suite it came with was Electric Desk - big silver box with elastic and velcro. Had terrific APA graphics - way above what Hercules or IBM offered at the time. Far better than a Compaq - ran 6mhz instead of 4.77, the keyboard was protected by a shell and the whole things was screws, not plastic tabs like the Compaq.
Daralex on Thursday, October 01, 2009
I had one of these and it only had the 5.25 disk. The other side was a cover. I was in the military and the BX sold it and it ran the full office suite. it was attached to an old star dot matrix printer. Oh yeah, the office suite was entirely on the disk I think it was called Enabler or something like that. Can't remember what I did with it...
Glenn Petersen on Sunday, May 17, 2009
I just got a Cordata PPC-400 luggable. It has a 40 meg "card-drive" hard drive with 37 megs available. Its just a XT model pc. The screen is green monochrome and it is a CGA compatible. There is no external monitor port for a RGB Monitor (! I think I'll add one...). It has 512 kilobyte memory. The motherboard has 5 XT slots. I dropped an AST Six-Pak Memory Card in and it reported 640K memory without any drivers installed. There are no extra internal power plugs, but I see no reason why you couldn't take out the "B" floppy (360K)and use that plug for a separate hard drive & controller card. The keyboard has 10 function keys-and a full numeric pad. Its not the best KB (contact-wise). Heavy luggable, case is kinda flimsy,(now that the plastic is brittle with age). Made in Korea, 1986. I don't know if its a turbo but it acts like a 8 mhz XT (possibly a 10 mhz). Mine is running MS-DOS (3 or 4) , has Wordperfect, PFS, Tetris, DB3, Norton Commander. The Floppy drives have a hard time reading old 360K disks- I guess our old disks are losing their magnetic charge- (this is kinda sad-all our old programming, letters, and work is disappearing). We need to get that old stuff into archives for history!
William Davis on Wednesday, January 21, 2009
I was an early adopter of PC for use in business. I replaced my Polymorphic 8813 with a Kaypro, and then with a Corona PC400 (the company was sued by the beer company) and changed its name to CorData. CorData also had these units sold under the Olivetti, Underwood and Philips names. Originally supplied with a 10md Seagate HD in mid 1988 it was upgraded to 20 then 40mb. It was a luggable and the 9 in screen was marginally useful. The system was very well engineered but lacked any spare bus space for expansion. The PC 400 suffered from a monochromatic screen and was never upgraded to color. While a fine computer like others the company could not compete.
Mike Millman on Thursday, January 15, 2009
Hi, I don't have much data to add to this... however I have a little. I had one of these (it was a hand me down from my grandfather... it was actually my first pc) except mine was rebranded as a Philips. And no, I am not mistaking it for another similar clone... it was 100% definitely the same exact computer, with the same case, it simply said Philips where the one on this page says Cordata... that was the only difference. I know this doesn't help much... but it's all I got. I have fond memories of this machine, and learning GW-BASIC on it. I actually had it up until about 5 years ago when it was ditched... and I wish I still did since I have never in my life seen another one of these with the Philips brand on it.
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