Subject: Re: Alpha (fwd)
To: Mark Turpin <>
From: Thor Lancelot Simon <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 02/13/1998 19:07:46
On Fri, Feb 13, 1998 at 04:01:20PM -0600, Mark Turpin wrote:
> No, not right now.  What you have is an sx164, which is not compatible
> with the pc164 processor.  In order to run the alphapc port of NetBSD, you
> must have a pc processor.  At least, that has come to be the assumption of

I have NFC what you are getting at here.  It is certainly not correct --
but it also refers to a number of products which do not exist.

I am going to attempt to respond to what I think you were trying to write,
rather than to what you actually wrote.  If whatever mailing list you forwarded
the original message from was the source of your confusion (at least about
NetBSD/alpha) then I'd appreciate it if you'd forward this message there.

There is no "alphapc" port of NetBSD.  There is, however, an Alpha port.  It
runs on various machines including the TurboChannel Alpha workstations, the
newer PCI-based Alphas also supported by Linux, and the 8200 and 8400 series

There is no microprocessor known as the "pc164".  There is, however, a
motherboard known as the AlphaPC164.  This motherboard is commonly referred
to as the "pc164".

There is no motherboard or system known as the "sx164".  There is, however,
a motherboard known as the AlphaPC164SX.

The pc164 motherboard uses the 21164 microprocessor.  The pc164sx motherboard
uses the 21164PC microprocessor, which has multimedia instructions and an
off-chip (rather than on-chip) L1 cache.

Both motherboards (as well as the AlphaPC164LX, a higher-performance
motherboard using the 21164 microprocessor) tell the operating system that
they have a "pc164" systype.  They aren't really quite the same.  Among
other things, at least some evidently use a bus bridge chip that's not quite
compatible with the one on the plain pc164, and which NetBSD doesn't yet
support.  Also, there are some bugs in the 21174 chipset used on the pc164sx
and pc164lx which NetBSD doesn't work around, since it doesn't currently
distinguish between the three systems which report a "pc164" systype.

> myself, and others on this list.  However, don't be worried, it is my
> understanding that work is being done as we speak on porting netbsd for
> the sx due to the sx's habit of getting hosed after a machine check on set
> irqstat and halting, and rebooting into a endless loop until its turned
> off.  Its a b*tch to work with, and quite annoying, however until "they" =
> being the people that are _much_ more familiar with porting os's to
> different arch's finish/progress on it, then you are out of luck just like
> the rest of us stuck in rhlinux 5.0 (i assume you are in 5.0).

I have no idea what any of this has to do with "rhlinux 5.0".