Online Systems

You don't need anything to get started - just open up a new session right in your web browser, and check out our How-To video guides to learn what you can do. Play original mainframe versions of classic games like Adventure and Oregon Trail, or write your own programs in early languages like BASIC. Information and directions on how to log in as a guest is displayed when you connect to each system.

However you choose to get started, just remember - this isn't like loading up an NES emulator on your laptop; when you connect to our Online Systems, you're running programs on the real physical hardware sitting at Living Computers right now! So make sure to come visit us soon so you can see, hear, and feel these incredible systems in their full glory!


The very first system acquired for what would eventually become the Living Computers collection, TOAD, or T-O-A-D, stands for “ten on a desk.” Released in 1995 by Redmond, Washington-based XKL, the TOAD is a recreation of the iconic 60s and 70s mainframe, the DEC PDP-10, but using 90s era technology.

Learn how to remotely log in to Living Computers’ XKL TOAD-2 right from the browser of your own computer in this short video.

Miss Piggy (aka, the DEC PDP-11/70)

Though it may not appear to be very “mini,” the PDP-11 was DEC’s flagship computer throughout the 1970’s and became one of the most popular minicomputers ever, with over 600,000 units made. Living Computers’ PDP-11/70, nicknamed “Miss Piggy,” was used at Microsoft by the team that developed Word and the spreadsheet application Multiplan. It was retired in 1986, but now you can access Miss Piggy online, running Version 7 of the Unix operating system.

Restoration at Living Computers

Living Computers’ team of engineers are hard at work actively restoring all of our in-person and online vintage computers within the museum, most of which are running 24/7. It’s no small task, but a lot of our restoration projects benefit from community support, including our user-contributed wiki page. On most days, you can see engineers in action as they carefully study, repair, and revive the computers in their care.

Read about our restoration efforts on the Living Computers blog by clicking the link below and filtering for "restoration".