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OpenVMS Hobbyist Program | Alpha Systems Forums | Alpha Hardware Forum
Author Personal Workstation 433au
Altivo
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Posts: 86
Location: Illinois
Joined: 26.05.07
Posted on September 13 2007 12:45
I've just managed to acquire one of these, apparently in working order, but no printed documentation at all. While I was an old-time VAX/VMS user and have played with the VAX emulator, I've never worked with an Alpha before.

I'd like to get it running with OpenVMS on the hobbyist license program.

First though, I need help getting the hardware set up, or at least a pointer to documentation somewhere online. The documentation pages on the Compaq/HP web site are gone.

This box has no video card in it, and apparently never did. It was in use as a network server. I assume I need to hook up a serial terminal or emulation program to one of the two serial ports in order to see the console messages and issue console commands. Can anyone tell me which port and what default settings? I can probably get it by trial and error eventually, but that would help.

The box also has no internal HD, just a floppy drive and a CD-ROM drive.. It came with several external SCSI disk towers, but none are labeled so I'm not at all sure what the configuration was. I assume it was set to boot by default from the SCSI chain. Does the boot drive have to be SCSI address 0 or will it run down the chain looking for a bootable disk unit?

The motherboard is apparently MiataGL, as it has USB ports on board. But until I can get at the console prompt, I don't know much else about it.

Oh, for OpenVMS licensing: does the serial number matter on these? There's a sticker on the back with a serial, but I have no idea whether it matches any internal identifier in the CPU so I haven't applied for hobbyist licensing yet.

Thanks for any help.
http://altivo.dreamwidth.org/
Author Re: Personal Workstation 433au
brad
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Posts: 134
Location: Hopedale, MA USA
Joined: 15.12.05
Posted on September 13 2007 14:54
[quote:35fab50415="Altivo"]I've just managed to acquire one of these, apparently in working order, but no printed documentation at all. While I was an old-time VAX/VMS user and have played with the VAX emulator, I've never worked with an Alpha before.

I'd like to get it running with OpenVMS on the hobbyist license program.

First though, I need help getting the hardware set up, or at least a pointer to documentation somewhere online. The documentation pages on the Compaq/HP web site are gone.
[/quote:35fab50415]

Try here:

http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh/miata/Service/

(my PWS433au!)
http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh
Author Re: Personal Workstation 433au
brad
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Posts: 134
Location: Hopedale, MA USA
Joined: 15.12.05
Posted on September 13 2007 14:56
[quote:1fb8dc6ae5="Altivo"]I've just managed to acquire one of these, apparently in working order, but no printed documentation at all. While I was an old-time VAX/VMS user and have played with the VAX emulator, I've never worked with an Alpha before.

I'd like to get it running with OpenVMS on the hobbyist license program.

First though, I need help getting the hardware set up, or at least a pointer to documentation somewhere online. The documentation pages on the Compaq/HP web site are gone.
[/quote:1fb8dc6ae5]

Try here:

http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh/miata/Service/

(my PWS433au!)
http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh
Author Re: Personal Workstation 433au
brad
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Posts: 134
Location: Hopedale, MA USA
Joined: 15.12.05
Posted on September 13 2007 14:57
[quote:12223bd98b="Altivo"]I've just managed to acquire one of these, apparently in working order, but no printed documentation at all. While I was an old-time VAX/VMS user and have played with the VAX emulator, I've never worked with an Alpha before.

I'd like to get it running with OpenVMS on the hobbyist license program.

First though, I need help getting the hardware set up, or at least a pointer to documentation somewhere online. The documentation pages on the Compaq/HP web site are gone.
[/quote:12223bd98b]

Try here:

http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh/miata/Service/

(my PWS433au!)
http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh
Author Re: Personal Workstation 433au
brad
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Location: Hopedale, MA USA
Joined: 15.12.05
Posted on September 13 2007 15:04
[quote:32d364d6c0="Altivo"][...]

The motherboard is apparently MiataGL, as it has USB ports on board. But until I can get at the console prompt, I don't know much else about it.
[...][/quote:32d364d6c0]

Apologies for previous multiple posts - I received error messages which I (wrongly) assumed meant that the posts did not "post".

Mine has *slots* for USB ports, but no working ports. I've heard (but I don't know for sure) that this may be a sign that it is not an -au, but an -a.

[quote:32d364d6c0="Altivo"]
Oh, for OpenVMS licensing: does the serial number matter on these? There's a sticker on the back with a serial, but I have no idea whether it matches any internal identifier in the CPU so I haven't applied for hobbyist licensing yet.

Thanks for any help.[/quote:32d364d6c0]

Use the S/N provided; I've been using mine for years without issue!
http://www.turquoisewitch.com/~bradh
Author
Altivo
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Location: Illinois
Joined: 26.05.07
Posted on September 13 2007 15:28
I'm confident this one is a 433au. The red button on the case says so, and it was running Unix, which I believe is what the "u" stood for. The USB ports are real connectors attached to the board, so presumably they are legit.
http://altivo.dreamwidth.org/
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Altivo
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Posted on September 13 2007 15:49
Thanks for the URL too. That's exactly the document I was hoping to find. Now I just need to locate a suitable serial cable...
http://altivo.dreamwidth.org/
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Altivo
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Posted on September 15 2007 11:20
It took some hunting to find suitable serial cables (not much used any more) but I finally got the box powered up with an old notebook computer hooked up to the COM1 port to act as a terminal.

It self identifies as a 433au, Console version V7.2-1 Mar 6 2000, and the console prompt is >>> so I guess it has SRM. I had to mess around for a while to figure out how to stop it from repeatedly trying to autoboot from an external boot drive that wasn't present.

The last OS it ran was Tru64 UNIX, according to the console variables. The internal serial number matches the sticker on the outside.

The CDROM drive is on dkb0 and is a Toshiba XM-6202B. That's an EIDE drive. Does anyone know how I can tell if this is going to give me trouble installing OpenVMS from a CD? I gather that it depends on whether the internal chipset is Intel or Cypress, but how do I find out? If I need to find a SCSI CD-ROM drive for the install, I might as well start looking now rather than wait until the distribution CD arrives.

EDIT: Figured it out, I think. This is the MiataGL because it has USB ports on the back and the SCSI is on the MLB, so it should have the Cypress chipset and all will be well. So, now I get to download Linux or wait for the OpenVMS CD to arrive. smiley
http://altivo.dreamwidth.org/
Author
Altivo
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Joined: 26.05.07
Posted on September 16 2007 04:19
Yep, I found SHOW CONFIG after I wrote that. I remembered SHOW DEV but it wasn't telling me about the PCI and ISA controllers. This is the GL version.

SRM Console V7.2-1 Mar 6 2000
ARC Console 5.70
PALCode OpenVMS V1.20-16
Tru64 UNIX V1.22-18
SROM v5.90
Processor DECChip 21164A-2 433 MHz 96 KB SCache
0 MB BCache
Memory 1024MB

The PCI bus shows DEC 21143 Network Controller, Cypress PCI, Toshiba CD-ROM, USB, and ISP 1040 SCSI Controller.

I didn't see a battery for the real time clock when I looked inside the case. Is there one? It was still running, about 20 minutes slow on GMT, with the correct month and day but thought the year was 2055. I set the date and time and then powered the machine off. This morning it is still correct based on my setting from last night.
http://altivo.dreamwidth.org/
Author
Altivo
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Location: Illinois
Joined: 26.05.07
Posted on September 17 2007 01:59
Thanks again for all the useful information. I've been working through the material on your web site, but there is so much there that it will take a while. smiley
http://altivo.dreamwidth.org/
Author RE: 433 and Wake on Lan
digitalayr144
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Posts: 3
Location: Cardiff
Joined: 03.06.08
Posted on June 10 2008 05:06
Has anbody any idea if you can set up Wake on Lan functionality on these boxes if you have the correct ethernet card, assuming you can buy a card that vms will support.
Author RE: Personal Workstation 433au
imiller
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Joined: 24.02.06
Posted on June 11 2008 04:32
I've never seen wake-on-lan working on VMS.

Do you have any scsi cards in the PCI slots?
http://www.encompasserve.org/~miller/
Author RE: Personal Workstation 433au
GerryB
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Posts: 24
Location: Florida
Joined: 26.06.08
Posted on September 15 2009 09:37
Since this post is addressing the PWS 433au I thought I'd ask my question here.

Here it is:

Can a 433au motherboard (MLB) be used in a 533au system if the CPU is changed and the dip switches are set for the correct clock speed?

Thanks for any replies.

Gerry
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