This topic came up in my local vintage computer club (see: http://www.marchclub.org/ ) and I thought that I would expand the conversation to this forum too...
Who is maintaining a boot disk archive currently? I have read about the lack of these resources in various circles, although there are some limited sources spread around.
Here is my definition of a boot disk archive:
1) A person goes to a central location to review a comprehensive list of all boot disks available in the archive
2) The person scans the list and then contacts the library/archivist to request a copy of the diskette(s)
3) The archivist acts as a go-between for the requestor, and contacts the person(s) who have agreed to burn a copy of the requested boot disk
4) In one form or another the requestor gets confirmation and an address to send a SASE containing a blank diskette of the required media.
5) The archivist or associate of the archive makes a copy of the requested boot disk using the disk sent by the requestor and mails it back in the SASE. It is presumed that the disk is tested on the type of system native to the boot disk or the equivalent.
I would be willing to participate in such a project.
I like the idea of an internet resource for downloading boot disks, but it would be so much easier if they disks were burned directly from the original system rather than converted back and forth. Some boot disks are just too hard to transfer to and from the internet. It's so much easier to test on the real mcCoy as well. In addition to being a good hobbyist citizen it's good to exercise these systems, keeping them in working order by making boot disks.