Otrona Attache
Released:April 1982
Discontinued:September 1984
Weight:18 lbs / 8 kg
Volume:about 1/2 cubic foot
CPU:Zilog Z-80A @ 4 MHz
RAM:64K standard
Display:5.5-inch amber CRT
320 X 240 graphics
80 X 24 text
Ports:2 serial
external video
Storage:dual floppy drives
360K each
OS:CP/M 2.2.4

"Who says you can't take it with you? They're wrong, because now you can. Now there's ATTACHE.

The computer so small, so compact it goes anywhere you go.

Put ATTACHE under your arm and take it to the office. Take it into the field. And then take ATTACHE home.

At a mere 18 pounds and no bigger than a briefcase, ATTACHE goes wherever you need it. And it has all the features you'll need for doing everything from small business accounting to evaluating data from deep-space probes.

ATTACHE is some computer.

There's a complete, full-function keyboard, graphic display screen, and all the storage capacity you'll need - nearly three quarters of a million characters. Plus, ATTACHE gives you CP/M for access to literally thousands of pre-written programs.

ATTACHE is the little computer that goes a long, long way. No wonder people get carried away with it.

(Source: Otrona advertisement)

The Attache was the "BMW of portables", cherished by everyone from NASA/JPL to regular people on the go.

The tiny 5.5-inch amber CRT displays an entire 80 X 24 screen of text, although an external composite video monitor can be plugged into the video connector on the back if desired.

Comprising more than half of the Attache face, the dual floppy drives are neither full-height nor half-height, they are something in between - "2/3-height" 48-tpi floppy drives manufactured by Remex. They are double sided, holding 360K of data on each.

Additional connectors are two RS422/RS232 serial ports on the back, as well as a connection for an external DC battery pack. See - while running on batteries, the Attache really is a portable computer.

Although preceded by both the Osborne and Kaypro II "portable" computers, the Attache is by-far the smallest and most portable of them all (and also the most expensive).

Attache features include:
  • DMA
  • Real time battery-backed clock
  • Bus extender (S-100, GPIB, STD)
  • Interrupt driven
  • Hi-res graphics
  • Comes with:

  • Not too long after the Attache was released, Otrona offered the "8:16" upgrade.
    The new Attache 8:16 is actually two computers in one - operating as either an 8-bit (CP/M) or a 16-bit (MS-DOS) system.

    The 8:16 is a standard Attache with an additional daughter board, seen here to the left, which carries an Intel 8086 CPU, memory, and other circuitry so that it can run MS-DOS programs. A couple other small boards are also attached to the main motherboard, as seen above (they are marked "51230").

    CP/M and MS-DOS cannot be run simultaneously. Either operating system is selected automatically by simply loading the appropriate software. If a disk containing MS-DOS is booted, the computer is in 16-bit mode running MS-DOS. If a disk containing CP/M is booted, the computer is in 8-bit mode running CP/M.

    Running as an 8-bit computer, the 8:16 acts as a standard Attache, with the Zilog Z80A processor (at 4MHz), 64K bytes of RAM, and the CP/M 2.2.4 operating system.

    Running as a 16-bit computer, the 8:16 uses the Intel 8086 processor (at 8MHz), 256K bytes of RAM, and the MS/DOS 2.0 operating system. The 8:16 is not 100% IBM compatible, though.

    There is also has an optional(?) IEEE-488 (GPIB) parallel port on the 8086 board.

    Options announced, but not necessarily available, in 1983:
    Price Item Description
    $1495 IBM PC compatible add-on board 8Mhz 8086 runs IBM PC hardware independent software, 8087 co-processor, 256K RAM, 640 X 240 monochrome graphics, synchronous HDLC-type serial port, IEEE-488 interface.
    $795 GPIB / Multifunction board IEEE-488 interface, 16-bit bi-directional port, clock/timer, AMD 9511/9512 math chip, 12 bit A/D converter.
    $595 System Extension Board. IEEE-488 interface, 64K RAM (comes with CP/M 128)
    $2495 10 Meg. Hard Disk Plugs into IEEE-488 bus on the 8086 board (required).
    $595 96-tpi TEAC floppy upgrade (trade in old drive) 800K data storage per drive
    $16512 Volt battery packWill power the Attache for approx 45 minutes.
    $29512 Volt DC power converter 

    Attache system prices in 1983:
    System storageZ-808:16
    Single floppy (320K)$2695$3495
    Dual floppies (640K)$2995$3795
    96-tpi floppies (1.6M)add $495add $495

    In September 1984, Otrona Advanced Systems informed its 175 employees that they are ceasing operations, unable to reorganize under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Act, and going out of business.

    Related Links

  • Obsolete Computer Museum
  • Wikipedia
  • Otrona Attache 8:16 diskette archive
  • Attache schematics in PDF format

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