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OpenVMS Hobbyist Program | Alpha Systems Forums | FreeAXP
Author Using PersonalAlpha, Charon, and other container files
Bruce Claremont

Posts: 506
Joined: 07.01.10
Posted on March 18 2010 12:22
PersonalAlpha and Charon container files will work just fine with FreeAXP, as will container files created for SimH VAX or for the VMS LDDRIVER.

If you are attempting to boot a PersonalAlpha or CHARON-AXP system container file using FreeAXP, you may need to make the following changes to achieve a successful boot:

Disable any CHARON utilities like the Idle Loop or Accelerator. As with real Alpha hardware, these extensions will cause a boot check in OpenVMS.

PersonalAlpha's NIC device shows up as ESA0. FreeAXP's NIC device shows up as EWA0. If booting from a PersonalAlpha image, you may need to reconfigure Ethernet, LAT, and DECnet.
Author RE: A Note on AdvFS domains types, and on small containers
John Manger

User Avatar

Posts: 53
Location: nr Heathrow, Middlesex, UK
Joined: 18.03.10
Posted on March 18 2010 22:05
Don't forget when moving container files between emulators, that Tru64 UNIX V4 and V5 use different formats for AdvFs domains. An AdvFs domain created under V5.X as type '4' can't be read under V4.0x which only understands type '3' domains. If you are unsure of which AdVfs domain type you have, showfdmn(8) will tell you.

If you need 'small' legacy disks less than 1G in capacity, such as the RZ24, RZ24L, RZ25, RZ25M or RZ35, you'll need to create the containers manually and disklabel them appropriately.

For example, to create an RZ24 sized container: From within Unix create a file exactly 209813504 bytes long (that is 409792 * 512 byte sectors, ~204Mb), then export (copy/ftp) it to the host where the emulator runs. Configure the emulator to see your 'RZ24' as one of its containers, start the emulator and boot Tru64, then find the disk (scu or hwmgr), and disklabel it as an RZ24 something like this :

# disklabel -rw rz2 RZ24
# disklabel -rw dsk5 RZ24

John M
Author RE: Using PersonalAlpha, Charon, and other container files
Bruce Claremont

Posts: 506
Joined: 07.01.10
Posted on March 19 2010 04:31
SimH is another good way to create container files of any desired size. Review the SET and ATTACH commands in the SimH documentation.

Author RE: How to disable Stromasys IDLE tool

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Posts: 96
Location: Germany
Joined: 02.04.10
Posted on April 06 2010 22:01
Bruce Claremont wrote:
Disable any CHARON utilities like the Idle Loop or Accelerator. As with real Alpha hardware, these extensions will cause a boot check in OpenVMS.

To be a little bit more specific here:

If the Stromasys IDLE tool (V1.1 or V1.2) is installed on the system disk, which is being booted by FreeAXP, the following will happen:

>>> B DKA0

OpenVMS (TM) Alpha Operating System, Version V7.3-2
Copyright 1976-2003 Hewlett-Packard Development Company,L.P.

halted CPU 0
halt code = 7
machine check while in PAL mode
PC = ede0

If the SRM environment variable AUTO_ACTION is defined as RESTART, a MCHECKPAL crash will be written and the system will try to reboot.

This happens when the special SYS$IDLE.EXE execlet is being loaded by SYSINIT. It seems to issue the WTINT PAL code instruction, which seems to not be supported by FreeAXP.

The easiest way to prevent SYS$IDLE from being loaded is by clearing bit 0 (SGN$V_LOAD_SYS_IMAGES) in the SYSGEN parameter LOAD_SYS_IMAGES during a conversational boot:

>>> B -fl 0,1 DKA0

This allows the IDLE tool to be easily turned off and on, if you switch the system disk between PersonalAlpha/CHARON and FreeAXP. Note that clearing bit 0 of LOAD_SYS_IMAGES may also disable other alternate execlets specified in VMS$SYSTEM_IMAGES.DATA from being loaded.

If you want to permanently switch to using FreeAXP, you could also completely remove the IDLE tool using: PRODUCT REMOVE IDLE. For additional information, please see SYS$HELP:IDLE*.RELEASE_NOTES

Author RE: Application Failure On FreeAXP

Posts: 26
Location: Canada
Joined: 04.12.08
Posted on May 05 2010 04:20
I have just completed my first install of FreeAXP (Beta 271) on a new Core i3 laptop. The laptop is running Win 7 Home premium 64 bit. This is the first emulator installation I have performed on this machine.

Up until now, I have been using PersonalAlpha from Stromasys and have installed PersonalAlpha on several Windows computers under XP, Vista 32 and Win7 32 bit versions.

Not wishing to perform a fresh OpenVMS installation and configuration from scratch for my FreeAXP evaluation, I had used a copy of my existing PersonalAlpha 4gb disk container file (dka0.vdisk). The FreeAXP installation was problem free and I was subsequently able to boot OpenVMS using this container file. I was also able to login using the console and used TCPIP$CONFIG.COM to recognise EWA0 as the NIC device. This allowed me to telnet into the system from another Windows computer on my home network. So far so good..... until I ran into an application I/O related failure.

I have now moved further details on this problem to another thread entitled "%BAS-F-IO_CHANOT problem after moving from PersonalAlpha to FreeAXP"
Edited by johncookson on May 06 2010 02:21
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June 26 2018

June 24 2018
I am trying OpenVMS via SIMH. Need to get OS binaries for v7.3. Registered here but don't have any membership number yet which is needed to get license. Pls suggest what to do. I hardly know anyth

June 05 2018
Any other forum members in Perth, Australia?

April 05 2018
ah maybe they love that!

March 24 2018
Probably. More people hang out on the comp.os.vms newsgroup.

March 23 2018
I have a PE42A and other Alpha system stuff for sale. I'm in So California. Any interest out there?

February 27 2018
To Prohorenko. Please, visit group OpenVMS in the ok.ru

February 24 2018
How much does it cost to buy a complete OpenVMS hardcopy documentation set of the latest version

February 17 2018
Please help to obtain the license on OpenVMS

December 12 2017
HPE only makes the most current version of OpenVMS Alpha / IA64 /VAX available to hobbyists. When I had access to the Alliance 1 program it was the same. No public downloads are allowed by HPE.

December 08 2017
Is anybody knows OpenVMS 8.2 version downloadable version? or CD copy? Thank you very much

December 02 2017
Bitcoin and Blockchain enthusiasts ( plus distributed computing ) please connec / reply: http://www.openvmshobbyis

September 10 2017
lation/ For the most part just use VMS 6.1 media instead of 7.3. But why run the older release?

August 07 2017
Where can I find the write up on running VMS 6.1 using the simh emulator?

March 20 2017
Happy to have found my password again!

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