Subject: Re: Miata 500a and NetBSD
To: RJ45 <>
From: Jason Kaufman <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 12/12/2001 10:21:07

I purchased a 500a in August and have been trying to get NetBSD on it
ever since.

> Anyone kindly might give me an experience of NetBSD on Miata if it works
> ok, if there are some major problems or big bugs??

The first issue with the 500a is getting a SCSI controller that is SRM-
compatible.  Mine shipped with an incompatible Adaptec-2940UW.  After
about a month of searching I came across a Qlogic ISP 1020 card that
I thought would work great.  But during the package installation process,
the NetBSD installer caused a machine check.

I was able to reproduce this problem under a variety of SCSI controller
and drive configurations.  So then I decided to start hunting for an
ISP 1040, the card that supposedly shipped with the 500au.  In the
meantime I tried FreeBSD 4.4, OpenBSD 2.9, and several flavors of Linux
(RH7.1, MDK7.2, Debian-2.2r3).

FreeBSD made it through the installation, but only once was I ever able to 
boot into an installed system.  Four hours later, it crashed hard.  The
only OS that ever installed smoothly was Linux, more specifically RH7.1
after using Compaq's JumpStart disc.

Last week, an ISP 1040A (Rev. A) finally arrived.  After plugging it into
every PCI slot, neither SRM nor ARC could see it.  However, the EEROMCFG
utility for Qlogic ISP 1020 and 1040 cards located it on the PCI bus and 
I was able to change some parameters.  Finally ARC recognized it, but in
the end SRM still could not.

So what's running on it now?  A custom RH-based Linux distro.

> I read of the problem of 64bit PCI slots, but if I use a PCI 32 bit card
> inside the PCI 64 slot it should work anyway?

I placed the ISP 1020 and the 1040 in every PCI slot throughout testing
NetBSD.  My ISP 1020 currently sits in a 32-bit slot.

> There are any problems using IDE disks ? (My miata has a 1 scsi and 1 IDE
> disk)

As you probably already know, the Miata won't boot from an IDE hard disk.
I've never tried accessing a spare IDE drive under Linux.

The only additional hardware I have in the 500a is an extra 256MB of RAM from
Crucial, and the ISP 1020.  The SCSI drive is the original 4.3GB (Seagate,
I think).  My SRM version is 7.x.  I have been assured by others that 
my SCSI configuration is correct, so what gives?

If anyone has had success with the Miata line, please enlighten me.  NetBSD
is destined to run on this beast.