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OpenVMS Hobbyist Program | Hobbyists and OpenVMS | Introduction Forum
Author Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
drchrist68
Member

Posts: 8
Joined: 22.03.13
Posted on March 24 2013 01:05
Greetings from another VMS newb!

I'm a seasoned sysadmin having spent a couple decades managing Windows and various flavors of 'Nix. Most of my early computer training was on VAX/VMS and and IBM System/34 (SSP). The modern systems are wonderful and thankfully keep me employed, but I recall the older systems I learned on seemed to be so stable and reliable. Recently I've become interested in computing history and came looking for a way to revisit the past as sort of a hobby. Thus, I was pleased to learn of the OpenVMS Hobbyist program.

I'm currently running OpenVMS Alpha 8.4 on AlphaVM_Free on top of Debian 6. This is by far one of the most straightforward setups of any emulator I've used.

It has been a blast to learn so far, especially the process of smoothing out a few of the bumps along the way:

-License PAKs not loading properly; I ended up copying/pasting each command in its entirety into DCL in order to get the licenses registered. Only later did I discover that I needed to tweak my terminal emulation because it was mangling the file when I tried to execute it.

-Networking not starting at boot; found the proper line to un-comment in the startup file and all is well.

-New user cannot login via ssh because password is already expired; was able to login via telnet to change password, then ssh worked.

-X-forwarding works like a charm (ssh -Y), but need to recreate the X Authority file on the Alpha every time; still working on that one.

I like the fact that there is no need for constant updates to fix security issues. Once things are set and working, they just keep working. Now if only I can find some of my old FORTRAN programs from school and see if they run!

I find this forum is full of good information, hopefully I can contribute something valuable as well.

~David
Author RE: Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
Bruce Claremont
Member

Posts: 606
Joined: 07.01.10
Posted on March 24 2013 04:55
Welcome. Nice intro. Did you do any RPG on the S/34?
Author RE: Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
abrsvc
Member

Posts: 107
Joined: 12.03.10
Posted on March 24 2013 07:58
Welcome David,

Please note that if you do find the FORTRAN programs, they will likely run just fine. I still have some form the early days (VMS V1.5) that run without change on Alpha and Itanium. Even got Space Invaders running with VEST on the Alpha...

Dan
Author RE: Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
drchrist68
Member

Posts: 8
Joined: 22.03.13
Posted on March 24 2013 14:38
Thanks! I like the true backward-compatibility.

Bruce, I never did RPG on the S/34, just a bunch of FORTRAN, Pascal, Basic, plus sneaking in a game of Star Trek whenever the instructor wasn't looking. Also remember the green-text terminals that IBM referred to as "Two-Color" which were just green, and bright green. I always wondered how they got away with that one...
Author RE: This is going to be fun.
rdyess
Member

Posts: 2
Location: Dallas, TX
Joined: 21.07.13
Posted on July 21 2013 07:23
Hello David,

I think I'm going to enjoy this quite a bit. I share your interest in the older computers. I wrote Fortran programs for a CDC 1604 as a student at Texas Tech but don't think I could afford the electric bill even if I could find a working copy of the machine. I live in a apartment so my neighbors would also complain about the noise of the tape transports. LOL So I have decided instead to explore the wonderful world of VAX/VMS through an emulator. Should be fun, especially since my career is not in systems administration. Hopefully I'll learn something.

I'm with you on the terminal colors. I'm running a Mac with OS X v10.8 and still pick green text with black background for the Terminal app.

Anyway, welcome to the group.

Robert
--
Author RE: Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
Burgess
Member

Posts: 1
Joined: 02.04.15
Posted on April 02 2015 00:41
The company I work for has several Alpha's and we recently purchased a lot of used gear for backups. Now running on two GS1280-8's and many ES40's. We will likely move 5-6 ES40 single CPU systems to emulation within a year. We run the same COBOL application on HP-


pass4sure ccna security vce
Author RE: Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
abrsvc
Member

Posts: 107
Joined: 12.03.10
Posted on April 02 2015 01:39
I looked into emulation for my company at one time, but the cost was prohibitive. I found that purchasing spare hardware was far less expensive and built up wuite a collection of replacement hardware. 5 years later, I still have not needed any spares. These Alphas just keep on working. In 5 years, there have been 2 failures, both fans and easily replaced.

With Cobol applications, I would question whether or not "upgrading" to the Itanium would be cheaper in the short term and further upgrading to the x86 platform when VSI completes the port would be a better choice.

Dan
Author RE: Teaching an Old Dog new tricks
murraybay
Member

Posts: 13
Joined: 16.02.15
Posted on April 02 2015 13:16
abrsvc wrote:
I looked into emulation for my company at one time, but the cost was prohibitive. I found that purchasing spare hardware was far less expensive and built up wuite a collection of replacement hardware. 5 years later, I still have not needed any spares. These Alphas just keep on working. In 5 years, there have been 2 failures, both fans and easily replaced.

With Cobol applications, I would question whether or not "upgrading" to the Itanium would be cheaper in the short term and further upgrading to the x86 platform when VSI completes the port would be a better choice.

Dan


Yeah the Alpha's are pretty solid machines, well built. It's also still cheaper to buy a real Alpha then to buy the $4000+ emulators.smiley
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gtackett
October 27 2021
Make that DECdfs _2.1A_ for Vax

gtackett
October 27 2021
I'm looking for DECdfs V2.4A kit for VAX. Asking here just in case anyone is still listening.

MarkRLV
September 17 2021
At one time, didn't this web site have a job board? I would love to use my legacy skills one last time in my career.

malmberg
January 18 2021
New Hobbyist PAKs for VAX/VMS are no longer available according to reports. Only commercial licenses are reported to be for sale from HPE

dfilip
January 16 2021
Can someone please point me to hobbyist license pak? I'm looking for VAX/VMS 7.1, DECnet Phase IV, and UCX/TCPIP ... have the 7.1 media, need the license paks ... thanks!

Bart
October 16 2020
OpenVMS, and this website!

malmberg
September 05 2020
VSI community non-commercial licenses for AXP/IA64 are available now.

malmberg
September 05 2020
See the forum about licensing. Don't know if HPE hobby licenses still being issued. Commercial licenses still being sold.

silfox70
September 01 2020
I need the license for OpenVMS7.3. Where can I find them?

malmberg
August 29 2020
Eisner, which is currently being moved, got an SSH update and the keys were updated to more modern encryption standards.

jiml
July 11 2020
ssh to eisner is now giving (on linux) "WARNING: REMOTE HOST IDENTIFICATION HAS CHANGED!" , Has the server key in fact changed ? Of WHO can we ask that somewhere on the eisner webpage they

wyan
May 06 2020
Turns out I had an account here, it still was set to my location a decade ago, so hey, I'm back after over a decade!

Hein
April 21 2020
Hi all, haven't been here in years. Good to see it is all there still. I'm looking around at the forum to stop/start msipcap - 'could not be stopped' - for now. I'll shutdown FreeA

EstesDave
January 09 2020
does anyone have or know of DRB32 manuals

romaxmaniax
November 04 2019
V6.1

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