Subject: Re: What are you using Sun3's for (hacking of course)
To: Brian <>
From: Robert D. Keys <>
List: port-sun3
Date: 10/29/1998 10:35:18
> I was just curious what types of things you all are using your Sun3/netbsd
> systems for?

Alas, I can't get a NetBSD up on mine, since it still has that dummy
sun 2 scsi board thingie.  Anyone get a port fixed up to run on the
early sun 2 scsi boards yet?  I tried a normal sun 3 NetBSD-1.3.2
tape, but it did not go anywhere.  SunOS came up fine though.

> I have plans (once mine is up and running) to just use it to hack around
> on, but perhaps some of you use these in production?

I was planning to use mine as a closet server at home.  That would seem
to be a good use of such olden toys.

> I have a big scary box, I think its a 511 or 611 case, and it has a tape
> drive and hard drive in it, and I have to see if those work, hopefully
> they will.

Is that the big 12 slot vme crate?   Nice iron, like mine.  It should have
a scsi tape drive converter board and probably a Wangtek tape (some were
Archive drives).  The other drives in mine were mfm monsters of 69mb.
Mine was rolled off the back of a truck and got rather bashed in, but,
with some hammering and pfutzing, it straightened out enough to work.
I pulled that mfm controller board and removed the pair of 69mb drives
and managed to squeeze in a little Quantum LPS 240 drive behind the
aluminum mounting bracket so it could connect up to the scsi cable.
I hung it off a reversed PC drive mounting bracket bolted to the drive
tray wall.  It is crude bit it works.  I need to drop a 1 gig drive in
there, maybe for some more usable space.  How big a scsi drive can be
put on the usual sun 3 hardware?

My machine is the 12 bay case, with a 3/110 cpu, 3 Carrera ram boards,
and that scsi 2 controller (yuk).  I do have one 280mb 8 inch drive
and a spare 12 bay tower size box to run it in, but that is not enough
room to do much with for a HD, so that will probably be dumpster fodder.

Interestingly, I tried adding a 3rd device on the scsi line by extending
thescsi cable a few inches, and it would not take a third device.  I could
get a drive and the tape, or two drives to work, but not 2 drives and the
tape.  Strange.

> I have a DB50 cable going from my Sun3/50 to the 611, and then the 611 has
> a SCSI out that is not terminated.  Do you think it will work without the
> terminator or had I better try and track down a db50 scsi terminator?  I
> hope I can find one for cheap.

All external cable runs should be terminated.  You can use a drive with
the terminators on the drive, probably.  Check your last external device
and see if it has terminators installed already.  If not, find the DB
50 terminator.  They are around 5 bucks here and there.

> My other route, is to just run a diskless config and use an xkernel.  I
> suppose black and white xwindows is good for running an xterm session and
> that's about it? :)

Nah, make it run standalone.  It is a battleship, but fun to play with.
My monitor is dead, so I have to use a serial console on it.  Crude, but
if I make it only a server, that will do fine.

> Brian


(Retrocomputing is a fun daily dose of geritol.....(:+}}.....)