Epson | ActionNote 4SLC/33 | Product Support Bulletin | Epson ActionNote 4SLC/33 Product Support Bulletin

EPSON AMERICA. INC.
EPSON
Product Support Bulletin
Subject:
HP Laserjet Printers Cause The ActionNote 4SLC series and ActionNote
500C Units to Lock-up During Power On When Attached.
Date: 07/26/95
Page(s): 1 of 1
PSB No: S-0185
Originator: AV
Field reports indicate that when some HP printers are attached to the parallel port, the
computer hangs/malfunctions during power on. Investigation has verified these reports.
This situation can be quickly diagnosed, and corrected by following the procedure
below.
Description:
When the HP Laserjet is powered on and the printer cable is attached to the notebook
the computer may hang or malfunction during power on.
Corrective Measure:
When the cable is not attached and the printer/computer are powered on to a ready
state and then the cable is attached, the units functions normally. The notebooks will
also power on properly if the printer/computer are attached and the notebook is
powered on first.
Conclusion:
The issue reported was easily duplicated on the AN-500C. However, the AN4SLC
varied depending on which BIOS version was being used. If the older 2.06s BIOS
version was installed, there was no problem. With the 2.07S version of the BIOS,
follow the power on procedure listed above.
EPSON
EPSON AMERICA, INC.
Product Support Bulletin
Subject: Epson ActionNote AN - 4SLC/33 Questions and Answers
Date: 10/08/93
Page(s): 1 of 8
PSB No: S-0169
Originator: AV
GENERAL
Q1.
What is the Epson AN-4SLC/33?
A1.
The Epson AN-4SLC/33 is Epson's newest notebook computer. The AN-4SLC/33 offers the full
functionality of an AT-compatible computer, with excellent expansion capabilities.
Q2.
What are some of the standard features?
A2.
The Epson AN-4SLC/33 includes a 33 MHZ 486SLC microprocessor; support for an optional
Cyrix CX 83S87-33 numeric coprocessor; 4 MB of RAM (2 MB soldered on motherboard and 2
MB memory card); 1 removable, rechargeable NiCad battery; a 3.5", 1.44 MB floppy disk drive;
640 x 480, back-lit monochrome VGA-compatible LCD; one parallel port, two RS-232C serial
and an RJ-11 jack (when modem is installed, COM2 is disabled): an external VGA analog
monitor port; connector for an external keyboard or mouse; Logitech Trackball and a "Y"
external keyboard/ mouse adapter that will allow you to use a pointing device and keyboard
simultaneously.
MS-DOS 6.0, Windows 3.1. and a carrying case.
Q3.
What are the options and expansion capabilities?
A3.
The 4 MB of system RAM can be expanded to 8 MB total by removing the existing 2 MB
memory module and installing an optional 6 MB memory module. A 2400/9600 Data/Fax
Modem option kit is available which contains Bitcom and Winfax Lite software. In addition to
the 6 MB memory module and 2400/9600 Data/Fax Modem Kit, Epson will offer a spare NiCad
battery pack, and a Cigarette Auto Adapter. Further upgrades include a Cyrix CX 83S87 - 33
math coprocessor that is available to customers through their local Cyrix dealer.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 2 of 8
Q4.
How much does the Epson AN-4SLC/33 weigh?
A4.
5.5 pounds with the hard drive cartridge and battery installed. At 1.63" by
8.75" by 11", the Epson AN-4SLC/33 fits easily in a standard briefcase.
BATTERY
Q5.
What kind of battery life can you expect from the Epson AN-4SLC/33?
A5.
Testing has revealed, under typical operating conditions, an estimated battery
life of 1.5 to 2 hours. Depending on the configuration and usage, the battery
life could be more or less.
Q6.
Are additional batteries available? How are the batteries charged?
A6.
Yes, additional batteries are available as an option. The batteries can be
charged in the Epson AN-4SLC/33 by connecting the standard AC adapter or
optional Cigarette Auto Adapter. The notebook should be turned off or in
"suspend mode" to charge the battery.
Q7.
Can batteries be changed "on the fly"?
A7.
No! The Epson AN-4SLC/33 must be powered off before changing the battery.
Attempting to change it while the computer is powered on will damage the
battery or computer (possibly both) and void the warranty.
Q8.
How long does it take to fully charge the battery?
A8.
It takes 3.5 to 4 hours to fully charge the battery. Note that if you do not
completely charge a new battery and attempt to use the computer, you may
experience atypical operation.
Q9.
Are there any other power supply options?
A9.
Yes, an automotive cigarette lighter adapter is available.
Q10. How much do the batteries weigh?
A10. Approximately 8 ounces each.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 3 of 8
DISK DRIVES
Q11. What hard drives are being used?
A11. The Toshiba MK1422FCV, 2.5" 86MB HDD, Areal A120, 2.5" 136.9MB HDD,
Toshiba MK1522FCV, 2.5" 126.3 MB HDD, Seagate ST 9140AG, 2.5" 122
MB, Areal A180, 2.5" 174.6 MB HDD, and Seagate ST9190AG, 2.5" 164 MB
HDDs are currently being offered. Other hard drives may be available at a later
date.
Q17. What floppy disk drive is used?
A17. The Teac FD-05HF, 3.5" 1.44MB HDD.
Q18. What external floppy drives can be used?
A18. Pacific Rim and ValuStor external, 1.2MB FDDs have been found compatible.
LCD DISPLAY
Q19. What type of LCD display is used?
A19. The LCD is a large 10" 640 x 480 VGA backlit monochrome display with a
7 1/2 - inch by 5 3/4- inch display area.
Q20. Can you display on the external CRT port and LCD simultaneously and what
are the maximum resolutions available ?
A20. Yes - the computer will automatically recognize the external VGA monitor if it is
attached before the AN-4SLC/33 is turned on. You have the ability to control
CRT/PANEL simulscan or whether just to use the external CRT or internal
LCD through a utility program called VGACONF.EXE . The maximum
resolution for the built in LCD is 640 x 480 x 16 colors. The maximum
resolution for the external CRT port is 800 x 600 x 16 colors.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 4 of 8
Q21. What video drivers are supplied with the computer?
A21. The AN-4SLC/33 Reference Diskette contains the following VGA drivers:
Lotus 1-2-3, version 2.x,100 x 60 text; Microsoft Windows Ver. 3.0 640 x 480
by 16 colors and 800 x 600 by 16 colors; and Word Perfect V5.1 800 x 600 by
16 colors. Please note that the 800 x 600 drivers will not work on the internal
LCD. Also the VGA configuration utility - VGACONF.EXE - is provided for LCD
enhancements.
Q22. How do you control normal versus reverse video display?
A22. This is accomplished through VGACONF.EXE. There are four choices
available.
ETDG - Enable text and disable graphics reverse video
NOREVERSE - disable text and graphics reverse video
REVERSE - enable text and graphics reverse video
DTEG - Disable text and enable graphics reverse video
(Normal is black characters on a white background).
CPU/CHIPSET
Q23. What type of microprocessor does the AN-4SLC/33 use?
A23. The AN-4SLC/33 comes with a Cyrix Cx 486SLC/33 MHZ microprocessor. This
processor is an advanced 32-bit X86-compatible processor offering high
performance and integrated power
management on a single chip. The 486SLC is 486SX instruction set compatible
and 386SX bus
compatible. It features a 1-KB internal, two-way set associative cache.
Q24. Can I upgrade my AN-4SLC/33 by using an Intel Overdrive Chip?
A24. The Intel Overdrive Chip is not compatible with the Epson AN-4SLC/33
notebook computer.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 5 of 8
Q25. What type of System BIOS is in the AN-4SLC/33 and how do I run the SETUP
program?
A25: The SYSTEM and VGA BIOS conform to Seiko Epson BIOS specifications in a
single 1024-Kb (OT) EPROM. It supports Shadow Ram. To run the SETUP
program, you need to briefly press the delete key when the AN-4SLC/33 is booting.
While the AN-4SLC/33 is counting the memory, you will see a message to hit the
"delete" key to run setup. If you pressed the delete key, you will see the "BIOS
Setup Program - AMI BIOS SETUP Utilities (C) 1990 American Megatrends Inc, All
Rights
reserved " screen.
Q26. What Real Time Clock chip does the AN-4SLC/33 use?
A26. The Dallas RTC ( DS 1287 ) chip, which includes the lithium backup battery, is
socketed on the system
board.
SOFTWARE
Q27. What software and documentation is included with the AN-4SLC/33?
A27. Currently we are offering MS-DOS Version 6.00, MS Windows Ver 3.1, The AN4SLC/33 User's Guide, Quick Reference Guide, Reference Diskette, Logitech
Trackman Trackball software and User's Guide.
Additionally: If the unit was purchased with the optional internal modem, Winfax Lite
and Bitcom
software are included.
Q28. What about power management software?
A28. On the AN-4SLC/33 Reference Diskette, under the UTILS sub-directory you will find
the file VGACONF.EXE. One of the selections available in VGACONF.EXE is the
Standby Timer option. This feature sets the LCD power shutdown time when there
is no keyboard or display activity. Whatever time is set by this option, will over ride
any time set in the SETUP utility.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 6 of 8
POWER SAVE FEATURES
Q29. Are there any special power saving features to help prolong battery life?
A29. Yes. One way to help prolong battery life is to select the "Advanced Chipset Setup"
in the SETUP program and enable the Power Management Function and the other
is to manually put the computer is "Suspend Mode".
The Power Management Utility in SETUP turns off the LCD and hard drive to reduce
battery drain
when the system is inactive and running off the rechargable battery pack. The three
devices you can
select for the time of inactivity timeout are 1) the Display Timeout Counter 2) Hard
Disk Timeout
Counter 3) System Timeout Counter. This is in addition to the "display timeout
option" discussed
previously with VGACONF.exe.
Q30. How do you manually put the AN-4SLC/33 in "suspend mode"?
A30. This can be accomplished by sliding the "Suspend/Resume" button to the right or by
closing the
AN-4SLC/33 LCD.
Q31. How do you "resume" the AN-4SLC/33?
A31. A keystroke should "wake-up" the AN-4SLC/33. Preferably, the spacebar should be
used.
Q32. What if the computer has entered the Standby timeout mode and a keystroke
doesn't bring it back to
normal operating mode?
A32: There are some applications that may intercept any keystrokes before they can be
seen by the
system BIOS. You may have to disable the timeout in SETUP ( or VGACONF.EXE )
to use the
problem application on battery power.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 7 of 8
Q31. Any other power saving tips?
A29. One more - with the keyboard NUMLOCK on, use the keyboard command <Ctrl><Alt>-<+/-> [ on the embedded numeric keypad ] to change the CPU speed from 33
MHZ to 8 MHZ. This can save a significant amount of power and, with several types
of applications (such as word processing), will not appear to be appreciably slower.
COMPATIBILITY
Q30. How's the software compatibility with the Epson AN-4SLC/33?
A30. Very good. Almost every type of software that's been tried on the Epson AN-4SLC/33
has worked as
it should. You may need to experiment with the different display options for a given
package - some
will work fine as standard VGA, others will have a special option for an LCD display.
You can also
experiment with reversing the display mode and enabling contrast enhancements
using the
VGACONF.EXE utility found on the Reference Diskette.
Q31. How well does the AN-4SLC/33 work with local area networks?
A31. Very well. Novell has certified the AN-4SLC/33 as a workstation and in- house testing
has been completed for several other networking environments as well.
MISCELLANEOUS
Q32. What is the difference between the AN-4SLC/25 and the AN-4SLC/33 notebook
computers?
A32. There are a few minor differences between the two models as listed below.
The AN-4SLC/33 motherboard has a 486SLC/33 CPU, a crystal oscillator running at
66.67 MHZ,
and a resistor and capacitor has been added.
PSB No: S-0169
Page: 8 of 8
The variable speed math coprocessor from Intel only goes up to a speed of the 25 MHZ.,
therefore we only recommend the Cyrix CX 83S87-33 math coprocessor for use in the AN4SLC/33.
Additional configurations have been made available with the 33 MHz version. Unlike
the 25 MHZ
version we are offering a 170 MB configuration (without a 2400/9600 data/fax
modem ) and 170 MB
configuration (with the 2400/9600 data/fax modem).
Although the AN-4SLC/25 and AN-4SLC/33 LCD's are functionally equivalent, the
AN-4SLC/33 LCD
assembly has a separate p/n of 2010993/33 whereas the 25 MHZ LCD assembly is
2010993. This is
because of the label that is on the LCD. The 25 MHZ version says ActionNote
4SLC/25 and the
33 MHZ version says ActionNote 4SLC/33.
Q33. How do I get an external keyboard or numeric keypad to work ?
A33. You must have external keyboard/mouse adapter attached to the port for the
keyboard or numeric keypad to work. Attach the keyboard or numeric keypad to the
bottom connector with the keyboard
icon on it. With the Epson numeric keypad, you must use the "pigtail" that comes
with the option and
you must hit the numlock key on the keypad if numlock is not on at boot.
PSB No.: S-0062I
Page: 1 of 18
NBSL/20
VER
1.25
PART #
DESC
CMGO-A03
TYPE
ROM
LOC
REASON
INITIAL RELEASE (See TIB No:
NBSL-002 For NB-SL FLASH BIOS
version history.
NBSL/25
VER
1.25
PART #
DESC
CMGO-A03
TYPE
ROM
LOC
REASON
INITIAL RELEASE (See TIB No:
NBSL-002 For NB-SL FLASH BIOS
version history.
ACTIONNOTE 4SLC/25
VER
2.04S
PART #
2011208
DESC
AWARD
TYPE
PLCC
LOC
U12
REASON
INITIAL RELEASE
ACTIONNOTE 4SLC/33
VER
2.05S
PART #
2011208
DESC
AWARD
TYPE
PLCC
LOC
U12
REASON
INITIAL RELEASE
ACTIONNOTE 4000
VER
1.02S
PART #
DESC
AWARD
TYPE
27C010
LOC
U30
REASON
INITIAL RELEASE
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