Subject: Re: DEC 3000 Firmware Upgrade
To: None <,>
From: Ross Harvey <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 09/09/1999 11:47:55
> From: Andrew Gallatin <>
> Ray Phillips writes:
>  > Dear NetBSD/Alpha:
>  > 
>  > Could you give me a little advice please?
>  > 
>  > I'm about to try to install NetBSD on a DEC 3000 400 machine (which has a
>  > CD-ROM and a DAT drive but no floppy) and I'm wondering if upgrading to the
>  > latest firmware (version 7.0 according to
>  > before
>  > I do the installation is wise.  I assume that the answer is 'Yes' but DEC's
>  > firmware release notes say that only some versions of Digital UNIX are
>  > compatible with each version of the firmware, and I was wondering if the
>  > same is true of NetBSD.
>  > 
>  > 
>  > Raymond Phillips
> Be very, very, very careful when upgrading the firmware on a 3000/400.
> You need to make sure you have a new enough SROM chip, or an upgrade
> from an old version of the firmware to a fairly new one will trash the
> system & cause it to machine-check at power-on.  I'm fuzzy on the
> exact details of which revisions cause the problem, but you can have a
> look at: 

Since NetBSD supports installation from _either_ your CD _or_ from your DAT,
it may be best to just leave the FW alone. You can get a CD from Bob Nestor,
or write the `cdhdtape' image to a CD or a DAT tape in order to boot.

Also, when you get going, you might want to build the TCWSCONS kernel.
The installation and GENERIC require that you hook up a serial console,
but TCWSCONS supports the framebuffer and keyboard.

Since you need a serial console to install on that system, you may want
to read:

(I've partly rewritten this section, so it will change later today
when the web server does its next update.)