Hubble's 486 Backup Computer Wakes Up For the First Time Since 1990

Prospects were starting to look pretty grim for the venerable Hubble telescope. Following a communications breakdown, the Hubble team postponed their scheduled repair mission from October 14th until this coming February, at the earliest. Until then, the Hubble's usable data transmission abilities would depend on one thing: the successfully booting of a 486 backup system, last powered on before the Hubble Launch over 18 years ago. Well, the Hubble team has just reported that the dusty old computer seems like it's working just fine.

NASA scientists won't be sure of their success until the computer proves capable of executing mission-critical commands and/or playing through the entirety of Escape From Monkey Island, but their hopes are high for both prospects. [NASA via The Register]

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