Subject: Re: NetBSD on Dec 3000
To: None <>
From: Paul Mather <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 09/18/2002 09:04:30
On Wed, Sep 18, 2002 at 09:18:48AM +0200, Jochen Kunz wrote:
=> On 2002.09.18 07:11 Rufeng Li wrote:
=> > I have a Pelican that runs DU 4.0F and want to switch to NetBSD, but
=> > don't want to use a serial console.  It's not clear to me if the new 
=> > release 1.6 completely supports TC (i.e. both framebuffer and key 
=> > board & mouse). 
=> 1.6 does not support wscons on TC framebuffers by default, but it can be
=> enabled after installation. You have to install the machine using a
=> serial console. Then build a TCWSCONS kernel
=> (/usr/src/sys/arch/alpha/TCWSCONS). See
=> for
=> instructions. When the new kernel is booted you can use the local
=> framebuffer textconsole. Once this is running, all you need to get X is
=> startx(1) or xdm(1). 
=> I have a DEC 3000-500 with PMAGB-B and 1.6 with X works well on it. Next
=> adventure will be a dual hed config... 

The DEC 3000s have supported X literally for years now.  (At least
I've been running it on mine using the native hardware for that long.)
I think support for sfb may have come some time in 1.4-current, or at
the very latest sometime in 1.5.

Sadly, like Jochen says, the TC framebuffer is not supported for
installation, although someone did produce install media that would
utilise it, proving it is not impossible, just not supported in the
official release or snapshots.

=> Hmm. I think this should be included in the NetBSD-alpha FAQ.

I often wonder how many DEC 3000 owners are turned away from NetBSD
after reading (falsely) on that the native console and
X (server) are not supported for their machine.

I really think that information needs to be brought up to date on the
official site.  I don't think it is a big edit.


Paul (long time DEC 3000/300 NetBSD/alpha user).

PS: In the same vein, is it still true that FreeBSD can only run
diskless on the TurboChannel Alphas?  Or is that another case of out
of date hardware notes?  (Not that I want to switch.)


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