Subject: Re: HP 2247 or 2490A drives in VAXen?????
To: NetBSD Bob <>
From: Douglas Meade <>
List: port-vax
Date: 02/11/2000 12:04:46

This question has come up several times both on this list and on 
comp.os.vms.  I think the short answer is that just about any 
disk which is SCSI will work in a VS3100, although if it is 
a newer variety, the controller on that computer won't be taking
advantage of the disks potential command set or speed.

The only restriction for using the disk for NetBSD is, if it is
a boot disk, the boot partition should be within the 1 Gb range.
Other than that, I've used disks of all sizes as "data" disks 
in a VS3100.  Unfortunately, VMS does not support such disk 
partitioning, and so cannot boot from a disk > 1 Gb.  (That's 
why you may still hear a lot about ">1 Gb doesn't work in 

As far as spinning up, etc., if you can find the jumper layout,
the VS3100 does support spinning the drives up on command, rather
than on power-up, you can test if this is working by doing a 
"sh dev" at the console prompt, and watching the drive lights go
on after they are successively queried and spun up.  

When I was new to DEC's, I lucked out to find a palette of DEC
Expansion Boxes, with about 20 RZ57's & 58's.  I hooked them
up to my Linux PC, and alas, none of them "worked".  Luckily,
since I'm slow to throw things away, I kept them, and then 
was pleasantly suprised, when I bought my first Vaxstation,
that they worked after all.  These drives normally prefer
to be spun up on command, no upon power up, as the DEC engineers
designed 'em that way.


On Fri, 11 Feb 2000, NetBSD Bob wrote:

> Visiting the surplus pit this week (no spare DEC keyboard for whomever it
> was on the list in the MIT area that was wanting one -- sorry), I chanced
> upon some HP drives at fair prices.  They were HP 2247 and HP 2490A types.
> The 2247 is a 1.05 gig, and the 2490A is a 5? gig, if I am reading my
> sunformat.dat entries correctly from my sun info.  Now, the question
> arises.... will these critters work in VAXen, particularly my VS3100
> M38 or MV3100/10 things?  IFF so, can anyone give me any info as to
> which jumpers to set (parity, motor-on, etc)?  I am assuming parity
> is off and motor-on is off.  Are there any gotchas in running these
> on the VAXen, as to formatting?  I am assuming the 1 gig drives will
> do fine, but not sure on the 5 gig things.
> Any insights are appreciated.
> Thanks
> Bob