Subject: Re: Any experince with this alpha?
To: Steve M. Acheson <>
From: Chris G Demetriou <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 08/26/1996 16:29:54
>I've got NetBSD up and running on several of the alpha's here at NASA and on 
>my personal one at home.  Chris Demetriou has done most (all?) of the support 
>work for getting the UDB/alpha port working so far.

Jeff Hsu did the original work of making NetBSD/Alpha go on the
AXPpci, which is the generic system family which the Multia/UDB is
part of.

I wrote the (vast majority of the) base NetBSD/Alpha machine-dependent
code, and substantially reworked AXPpci CPU support since Jeff
originally wrote it.

> Here's the prob's with the system:
> No Shared libraries yet.  Needs people to do development


> - X works, but isn't really as fast as it could be as Chris just hacked 
> support.

right.  The video hardware is actually pretty good (nice acceleration
features), but the X server support is the absolute minimum to make it

> - SCSI works fine except with HP drives (NCR SCSI doens't like HP)

I've heard of no problems like this...  And have used it with several
HP drives...

> - The PCI slot is supported, but he PCMCIA (PC-Card) slots are not.


> - 24 meg just isn't enough to run X and compile under as well.

I'd second this.

> - As Fred pointed out (I'm the other he refered to) the Disk is way to small,
>    you'll need a lot more.  If you strip the binaries, remove un-needed files 
>    (your choice) you can get the system and X to all fit with about 6 meg of 
>    disk left (your MB might vary).

I bought my machines with larger disks.  8-)

> - The floppy might not be supported yet (means: I couldn't get it working but I
>    didn't try hard either).

Not currently supported.

> - Ethernet works well, and on boot senses what media.
> - Sound card isn't supported.

Both correct.

> Well, I hope that helps you decide.  The system is fast (for $800) and runs 
> well.  I've got 1.2Beta kernel up and running and it seems stable (no 
> crashes!).

The thing that I like most about these systems, actually, is that
they're _tiny_, and very well integrated.  I can stack my pair of
them, and they fit into almost zero space...

> Feel free to ask more questions if you have any...  And I'm sure that Chris 
> will correct anything I've botched :-)

"oh yeah.