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OpenVMS Hobbyist Program | VAX Systems Forums | Emulated VAX Forum
Author Help a newbie with VAX emulation basics?
Amby19
Member

Posts: 1
Joined: 30.04.09
Posted on April 30 2009 20:48
Hi, folks! It looks like you've got a fine site here.

I'm just a hobbyist and have no commercial or other need for a very reliable OpenVMS system and no need to support any specific VAX hardware; I'm just doing this for fun. I spent a most of three decades programming systems software under RSX-11M, VAX/VMS, and VAX/OpenVMS (all three primarily conceived and designed by the amazing Dave Cutler, who was also the principle designer of what evolved into Windows XP, and thus it is that it is Cutler to whom I bow four times a day).

Therefore, like many of you, I'd have to host OpenVMS on an emulator. The host platform I'd prefer using is Windows XP Pro (in part just to "keep it in the family", so to speak), but if there's a considerable advantage to using Linux (I've got a recent Red Hat release), I'd like to hear about that, too.

So I'd like to discuss the emulation options for a high-speed, high-end dual-core x86 hardware platform running XP (or Linux, if there's a clear advantage). SIMH has the virtue of being free, but if a couple of hundred bucks would buy me an easier-to-implement, prompt tech support-providing and less buggy solution, I'd definitely consider that first (more than that is too much).

I've seen the brief discussion here of SIMH and have visited simh.trailing-edge.com. It appears that SIMH does not appear to emulate RSX-11M: True? But it does emulate VAX/VMS, of course. How do you folks like the latest release?

Would it be able to support DECWindows, for example (or whatever HP's OpenVMS calls it)? Does SIMH lack support for valuable things a general software hobbyist like myself would expect to have? (I don't need networking, at least for now).

And what about CHARON? One post I found regarding CHARON said that it was free for non-commercial use, but I couldn't find anything else that said that. Does anyone know? From the marketing claims, if it were to be free for non-commercial use, it seems to me it would be ideal. If it's not free, anyone have any idea what they would charge for a hobbyist license?

From what I can tell eVax is not going to be at all suitable, since it's really not a VAX emulator. Or am I wrong about that?

So, I'd like to hear what you folks have to say on these questions. I hope there's enough activity that I won't have to wait long for a response...

Thanks!
Author RE: Help a newbie with VAX emulation basics?
imiller
Administrator

User Avatar

Posts: 277
Location: UK
Joined: 24.02.06
Posted on May 01 2009 04:34
SIMH will emulate PDP11 hardware but getting hold of a RSX11M kit may be a problem. I don't know what hobbyist arrangements the owner of RSX has if any. IIRC RSX was sold to Mentec.

People use SIMH for VAX/VMS and it works. You can have networking too.

For an Alphaserver you can use PersonalAlpha from the company formally known as SRI
http://www.stromasys.ch/charon-axp/palpha.htm

or there is this one - somewhat more bleeding edge
http://www.es40.org/Homepage
(the main person behind the ES40 emulator is now involved in developing an emulator for commercial use. Watch for news on that).

You need to acquire a VMS distribution - you can order one from this site or borrow one. You get your hobbyist licences via this site.

DECwindows - I don't do GUI but I gather you can run a X Server on your laptop and display the DECwindows that way.
http://www.encompasserve.org/~miller/
Author RE: Help a newbie with VAX emulation basics?
pfau
Member

Posts: 33
Location: North Brunswick, NJ
Joined: 12.03.08
Posted on May 02 2009 01:09
Simh does not emulate VMS or RSX. It emulates the hardware. It can be built and configured to emulate a couple of different VAX systems and several flavors of PDP-11. You can load VMS or RSX onto those emulated systems.

As stated by imiller, finding an RSX distribution may be difficult. Your best bet for VMS media is the hobbyist distribution.

Simh does not emulate the graphics hardware necessary to run a DECwindows server. You can, however, run client applications and send the display to any X-Windows server. If you have a linux system running X-Windows or load Cygwin and its X server you can use that to display your VMS X applications. You can even use XDMCP if you want but it may be difficult to get a usable keyboard mapping.
http://nbpfaus.net/~pfau/
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malmberg
August 04 2022
No more VAX hobbyist licenses. Community licenses for Alpha/IA64/X86_64 VMS Software Inc. Commercial VMS software licenses for VAX available from HPE.

ozboomer
July 20 2022
Just re-visiting.. No more hobbyist licenses? Is that from vmssoftware.com, no 'community' licenses?

valdirfranco
July 01 2022
No more hobbyist license...sad

mister_wavey
February 12 2022
I recall that the disks failed on the public access VMS systems that included Fafner

parwezw
January 03 2022
Anyone know what happened to FAFNER.DYNDS.ORG? I had a hobbyist account here but can longer access the site.

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.

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