In these times, cryptocurrency mining can be done on a wide range of devices, from the small Raspberry Pi to custom mining rigs. But rarely do we see a rig as retro as this one.
I am talking about a laptop that is being used for mining, which is also very old. The computer is from Dmitrii Eliuseev, and it’s an old Toshiba T3200SX laptop with a 16 MHz Intel 386SX processor (not even a DX!) for Bitcoin mining.
According to Eliuseev’s own calculations, it will take Toshiba 584 million years to generate $1 worth of Bitcoin.
Today there is a very wide range of computing devices that have been used for the same purpose of generating money. But what is really used for Bitcoin mining, are the ASICs that are specially created for this task. However, people have set up thousands of devices for Bitcoin mining.
The Toshiba T3200SX dates back to 1989 and its launch price was $6,299, which is out of reach for most people. It featured a 16 MHz Intel 80386SX CPU, which was state of the art at the time, especially for a portable machine.
The lack of available mining software led Eliuseev to code his own Bitcoin mining tool based on the SHA256 algorithm. During this process, he ran into many problems and one of them was the 16-bit DOS platform, but with a lot of work and patience he managed to create his own code, available through GitHub. This code can be compiled on a Windows machine using the free Open Watcom compiler before being put back on an older DOS machine like the Toshiba 386SX. Alternatively, interested users can compile the code on a PC now using an MS-DOS compiler such as Borland C++, in the DOSBox emulator, before transferring.
How fast this 32 year old laptop can mine BTC. The answer is impressive, in the length of time it would take to complete enough work to earn a dollar, according to Eliuseev’s calculations, it would take Toshiba 584 million years to earn $1 worth of Bitcoin. That’s thanks to a very blazing hash rate of 15 H/s, yes, hashes per second.