Subject: Re: Question about a Sparc 1 boot problem
To: Brian Buhrow <>
From: Geoff Adams <>
List: port-sparc
Date: 07/13/1997 15:27:52
Brian Buhrow writes:
 > 1.  Even though the NVRAM is hosed, shouldn't the machine boot anyway?

No, because #2, below, fails.  :)

 > 2. Can anyone explain why the test-net and the boot commands might yield
 > this similar message?

I've seen a different manifestation of this problem on ELCs.  I think
you'll note that your ethernet address is ff:ff:ff:ff:ff:ff.  Not only
is this not your real ethernet address, but I believe that's the
ethernet broadcast address.  This really messes with the PROM's tests
on the ethernet device.  On my ELCs, this merely causes the test to

 > 3.  Could there be an incompatibility between the Weytech chip and the PROM
 > version on the board?  (This is ROM revision 1.3)

Couldn't tell you for sure, but my guess is that it probably worked
for the previous owner (or it would have been pulled), but that it
certainly won't work now with bogus values in the NVRAM.

Btw, you can set the values in your NVRAM after you turn the machine
on, and then you'll be able to boot.  Since the NVRAM is just regular
RAM with a battery backup, it will keep the values you feed it until
you power down the machine.  Of course, the best thing is to buy a new
NVRAM chip for $15 to $20.

For full details, have a look at the NVRAM FAQ,

Good luck!
- Geoff