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Full Version: Hey, this place is on a closed Matrix from 2063
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As stated in the title, There are still systems in the world, that may have been self contained or cobbled together with leftover technology. For whatever reason, how would you handle a place that runs on the old Matrix, Or a rigger using the old VCR's?
In real life I have had to do this.

Hacking into an old spark 2 sun system, that was 10 years out of date, using a type of network that wasn't around any more (Token ring network). We had to read the manuals, experiment, even buy some old hardware. It took us months.

Tech has moved on since then. Look at Virtual Box. You run an virtual machine with a different operating system in another machine. At work we regularly run Ubuntu inside Windows, and occasionally run Solaris inside Ubuntu inside Windows. Its easy and has no real downside. Takes about 5 minutes to set up. The performance of a virtual machine is almost indistinguishable. We can even run programs written for an IBM360 (1960's tech) inside a windows box.

So there are two real life stories telling you opposite messages. From a "reality" point of view, the virtualisation tech is going to get better and better. If you want for game enjoyment reasons to put minus's on it, do so, but be aware that its only because you want to.

You might want to make them get make a hardware + logic roll, but in reality if you go to PC world equivalent you would find adapters that convert old world tech to wireless. And if not they can quickly knock something up: there will have been a million people doing this in the past, and they will post their blogs and stories about what to do and how to do it.

As far as exploits go: that system is an open book. Any script kiddy will be able to download a million exploits that won't have been patched. Just let your hacker have free rain. (unless its important for story not to)

Only worry about it if its important for your story. If its not, the rating of all the schools programs will have degenerated to 1 (I assume they cannot degenerate below that).
Oh no, not Virtual Box!

Windows XP running Linux running Windows 98SE was what I had to go through for one of my jobs. Dozens of computers running exactly this way to run through security properly or some other BS. It was a nightmare.

One advantage to obsolete technology might have is non-compliant formats for files, or even a unique operating system that just refuses to communicate with modern ones. Conversions within conversions within conversions. Like trying to load a WordPefect 4.2 for DOS document in today. Also, portable hardware memory has changed quite a few times, and some unique disks would make for an interesting situation where the 'Runners have the Paydata, but no way to access it to send it to their Mr. Johnson.

Finally, are you sure the exploit programs are completely backwards compatible? They might not even begin to savvy such archaic security systems. Like a electronics expert looking at a tumbler lock on a safe: "Yeah, if this was a MagLock, no problem, zip and in. But this thing comes from the '40s." "That's not THAT old." "The NINETEEN-Forties." "Oh. OH!" "Yeah, where's the explosives?"
QUOTE (CanRay @ Feb 28 2011, 04:59 AM) *
Like trying to load a WordPefect 4.2 for DOS document in today.

Just open wordperfect document using dosbox. Works well. Mind you I am using 5.1, not 4.2
Well, you could also have things like obsolete storage mediums (floppy disks, anyone?) holding vital information -- it is just that nobody knows how to read the damn data off! So I could see the right mixture of home made hardware containing a network that is a pain to interface with just because it is so rare, undocumented, and obsolete.
And the non-Matrix integrated VCR's? Just run straight sniffer/spoof style without the option to hack? This leads to Players wanting to do this with their own drones. Treat them as "slaved" to the Vehicle control rig "node" that has very limited capabilities?
Kyoto Kid
...all that is needed is some crash IC that is still active (doesn't need to be high rating) to auto trigger a full shutdown of the matrix in the event of an unauthourised intrusion. Then the team is left with having to reboot and sign onto the decade old system the old school way.

Scotty [sits down at 1980s desktop computer]; "Computer....Computer?"
[he is then handed the mouse by the company's owner]
Scotty [takes mouse an speaks into it]: "Hello Computer"
Owner of company: "Just use the keyboard..."
Scotty [cracks knuckles]: "Keyboard, how quaint"
I'd just give the hacker in question a penalty to all his rolls there to account for the unfamiliarity and basic incompatibilities between his system and the old one. All the other rules would be pretty much the same.
What if the hacker in question was a decker before the world went wireless? Even in 73, it's been less than ten years since the last big crash, and computer savvy is one of the few areas where characters can be quite sophisticated even at a somewhat young age.

Equipment issues producing some penalties seems quite reasonable if the pcs didn't hunt down some "antique" hardware to interface with, but unfamiliarity isn't necessarily a given.
That's so obvious I didn't feel the need to explicitly mention smile.gif. Of course the GM has to take the specific character into account in these situations. The penalty would be something that challenges that specific character whatever the justification for it is, too.
There certainly will be ways to make the new Matrix 2.0 tech backward compatible with the old stuff, as others have pointed out those are quite often neccessary for businesses. Of course you will never have your Fuchi Jack - USB 5.0 adaptor with you when you truly need it...
QUOTE (Sengir @ Feb 28 2011, 09:44 AM) *
There certainly will be ways to make the new Matrix 2.0 tech backward compatible with the old stuff, as others have pointed out those are quite often neccessary for businesses. Of course you will never have your Fuchi Jack - USB 5.0 adaptor with you when you truly need it...

Backwards capable hardware, that's a laugh! Even for industries that require them.

I'll give an example, while a field-tech, my Boss and I had to figure out how to upgrade the computer systems for the business we were hired by while still allowing the use of Dongles required by their software, of which there is NO replacement available on the market. Only problem, the program required Serial-Port Dongles to allow the software to run (It was an anti-piracy thing back in the day.).

The company that makes them no longer exists, the hardware is starting to die, and try finding a modern system with a serial port now-a-days! And, before you ask, we tried the USB-to-Serial Port Adapter, didn't work.

And, before you ask, this wasn't a small or niche business, but a major one found at least in every major city, and most minor ones.

It, uh, took quite a bit of doing... I'm just glad that Parallel Ports are still almost common. But dread the days when they'll be gone too...
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