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OpenVMS Hobbyist Program | Alpha Systems Forums | Alpha Software Forum
Author Stucked with TCPIP

Posts: 17
Joined: 16.10.09
Posted on December 27 2009 03:58

I tried several ways to get OpenVMS connected to my IP network.

NC7771 NIC (patched for OpenVMS) ist recognized by OpenVMS, but there is a link up/down problem. Hardware should be ok because problem does not appear with Debian Linux (Alpha), so my hardware is considered to be ok.

Some people told me to install latest patches for OpenVMS because that may be a driver problem. I would like to send OpenVMS patch sets by ftp or ssh over PPP to OPenVMS, so I try to set up a PPP connection to my Linux box, which is certainly configured as PPP server. I followed instructions at http://pupgg.princeton.edu/cdrom12/html/ssb71/6436/6436p003.htm#pppd_ch but still no success. Port tta0 at 9600 bps is right, because connection with minicom on linux side shows characters typed on OpenVMS side and vice versa.

Is there a good troubleshooting guide anywhere ?

Author RE: Stucked with TCPIP

Posts: 63
Location: bristol,UK
Joined: 23.03.07
Posted on December 29 2009 09:20
Hi Christian, I've been through a similar exercise recently connecting my newly installed 'ubuntu' linux system on the PC to my alpha 4000.

After some 'googling', I modified /etc/network/interfaces thus:
#davemod 24/12/09 to link to alpha
auto eth0
iface eth0 inet static
#auto lo
#iface lo inet loopback

looking at the online ubuntu notes, i used the command :
sudo /etc/init.d/networking restart

to restart the networking software.

then used the ubuntu system administration network tools to select 'eth0' to 'ping' the alpha.

Some while ago, I set the alpha 4000 to use 'autonegotiate' for the ethernet 100 meg link, at the SRM stage, pre openvms boot (i think i put some more detail under the alpha hardware topic 'gone Alphaserver 4100' )

From the alpha system account I used TCPIP CONFIGURE to set up a static IP address of with a mask of and made that link active (from memory)
TCPIP CONF is used to start FTP,TELNET,etc client and server services. Sometimes it seems necessary to start and stop TCPIP from within the CONF program to get the machines talking, in a trial and error sort of way.

I've only used TELNET from LINUX to VMS and was pleasantly surprised when it actually worked!

This is probably a little trivial for your purposes as it's all pretty new to me and i'm sure there are better qualified people available as i know even less about linux/unix sys management than VMS!

Incidentally, FTP worked just using the OVMS 8.3 CD software connected to windows XP BEFORE installing any patches.
Edited by somersdave on December 29 2009 09:26
Author RE: Seems NIC 7771 is unusable for OpenVMS

Posts: 17
Joined: 16.10.09
Posted on December 31 2009 02:30
all efforts did not changed behaviour of that card. OpenVMS is still running in that up/down loop everytimes an IP packet should leave OpenVMS.

I will give it a last try with a Compaq 1000 MBs BASE-SX PCI FCHBA DEGPA-SA E177687 19PK which should run with OpenVMS w/o patching firmware...

So a little more time for reading OpenVMS manuals.
Author RE: Wizard Article #8886 for NIC advice

Posts: 15
Location: BUTLER, PA
Joined: 03.12.06
Posted on December 31 2009 15:51
Plucked from C.O.V and other places:


Indicates that V7.1-2
is the earliest version that supporst a DE600 so V7.3 should be fine.
In addition some Comapaq NC cards are the equivalent of the DE600,
DE602, DE604. What follows is a excerpt from the relaease notes for
VMS V7.1-2 on the subject:

Support for Compaq's Fast Ethernet Network Interface Cards (NICs) based
on Intel's i8255x Ethernet controllers has been added to the OpenVMS
Alpha Version 7.2-1 release. These NICs replace the end-of-life DE500
family of adapters. These PCI based NICs support 10/100BaseTX,
100BaseFX, Full Duplex, Half Duplex, and Auto Negotiation.

OpenVMS displays these devices as EIx0 devices, where x is the
controller's unit letter. The device drivers for these devices are
SYS$EIDRIVER.EXE for the run-time environment and SYS$EIBTDRIVER.EXE
for LAN booting.

The SRM console provides an environment variable for setting the mode
of operation. The variable is EIx0_MODE, where x is the controller's
unit letter. Only newer Alpha platforms will provide console support
for these NICs.

The supported NICs include:



The DE600-AA NIC is also known as the NC3123 and is based on the i82559
Ethernet controller. This is a single port NIC using a standard RJ45
connector. This NIC supports 10/100BaseTX, Full Duplex, Half Duplex,
and Auto Negotiation.


The DE602-AA NIC is also known as the NC3131 and is based on the i82558
Ethernet controller. This is a dual port NIC using two standard RJ45
connectors. This NIC supports 10/100BaseTX, Full Duplex, Half Duplex,
and Auto Negotiation. It also provides support for an additional
daughter card, which allows one PCI slot to be configured with one of
the following:

Two 10/100BaseTX ports
Four 10/100BaseTX ports
Two 10/100BaseTX port and one 100BaseFX port


The DE602-TA NIC daughter card, also known as the NC3132, should be
used with the DE602-AA. This is a dual-port card using two standard
RJ45 connectors. This card supports 10/100BaseTX, Full Duplex, Half
Duplex, and Auto Negotiation.


The DE602-FA NIC daughter card, also known as the NC3133, should be
used with the DE602-AA. This is a single-port card using one standard
SC connector for use with multimode fiber. This card supports
100BaseFX, Full Duplex, and Half Duplex.

Note that the NC3123 and NC3131 cards are readily available on Ebay (in
fact I just picked up a lot of 10 NC3131's for $62 including shipping).

WARNING!! Don't confuse the NC3131 with the NC3134. They are both dual
port cards and nearly identicial but the NC3134 will not always be
identified as a DE602. I think it's a SRM firmware thing but I haven't
pinned it down.

I use the DE602 (NC3131) in my clustered machines (AS1200 and AS800).
One port goes to the switch for regular network traffic and the other
goes VIA a cross-patch cable to the second port on it's cluster partner
for SCS traffic. So far no troubles using Alpha V7.3-2

Hope this helps. After the DE500's I was a bit lost as I had heard
that Compaq was using some of their NC3xxx series, qualified for
VMS as replacements for the DE500.

Author RE: Stucked with TCPIP [solved]

Posts: 17
Joined: 16.10.09
Posted on January 08 2010 00:47
Thank you for that list, I would add DEGPA also. Got a working NIC now:

Device EWA0:, device type DEGPA, is online, network device, error logging is
enabled, device is a template only.

Error count 1 Operations completed 0
Owner process "" Owner UIC [SYSTEM]
Owner process ID 00000000 Dev Prot S:RWPL,O:RWPL,G,W
Reference count 0 Default buffer size 512

and no more up/down issues, it simply works like a rock - or OpenVMS ;-) It has a optical port, so I had to use one of optical ports, fortunally that switch supports it. Device shows one error, but connection has no issues.
Edited by taunusstein-net on January 08 2010 09:37
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