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The best-selling computer to date

The Commodore 64 (also known as the C64 or CBM64) is a home computer from the 1980s made by Commodore Business Machines (CBM). The C64 was the best-selling computer to date in the history of computer science with 17 million copies sold. A version of the Commodore Educator 64 was also developed for schools. The hardware was no different from the Commodore 64 except for the monochrome monitor built into the chassis. 1)

64 kB of RAM

The RAM consisted of 64 kB (hence the name of the computer), while the ROM was about 20 kB (it contained the system kernel, a BASIC version 2.0 interpreter prepared by Microsoft, and a character board). By default, after switching on, the computer offered about 38 kB for programs in BASIC. The rest of the memory was occupied by mapped ROM areas. This allowed, among other things, to “rewrite” the operating system from fixed ROM to RAM, allowing the user to modify it. It was possible to disconnect the ROM, obtaining almost a full 64 kB (without BASIC support). It was the first home computer to give this possibility. 2)

Built into the keyboard

The C64 was built into the keyboard — such miniaturization still arouses admiration. The bottom of the keyboard contained all of the computer components and ports, and sometimes even a floppy disk station. 3)


It is not known exactly when the C64 was born, as Commodore often leaked information about upcoming products, as it is done now with every new model of phone. It is known thanks to books such as “Commodore Company on the Edge” that the C64 was first presented in January 1982 by Commodore International. It was first shown at the Consumer Electronics Show, which took place from January 7–10, 1982, in Las Vegas. 4)


Commodore 64 emulators include the open-source VICE, Hoxs64,[119], and CCS64. An iPhone app was also released with a compilation of C64 ports. 5)

commodore.txt · Last modified: 2021/08/05 03:27 by aga