Subject: Success with RF72
To: Chuck McManis <>
From: Douglas Meade <>
List: port-vax
Date: 02/21/2000 12:34:25
Chuck, and those interested in DSSI,

Sorry for the gap, but I've been out with the flu.  I felt it
coming on late Thursday night, as I successfully installed 
NetBSD on my RF72...

I made several mistakes along the way, but the real gotcha was 
the 10-pin cable that runs from the control panel to the connector
behind the right hand side power supply in the BA213 case.  I 
removed the original cable (which originally had a plug in one
of the holes) and replaced it with one I borrowed from my other
BA213, which is running a KDA50.  Where I had (mostly) been getting
"drive offline" messages before, now the drive was up and running,
and in no time I had it disklabel'ed, newfs'ed and NetBSD'ed.

Now, this particular cable is hard to get, if you don't already have 
it.  I tried rolling my own with 10-pin IDC ribbon cable and connector,
but the computer wouldn't even power up. (Why?)  As I mentioned, the
original cable that worked with the RQDX3 controller doesn't work with
KFQSA. The DEC part number is 17-01641-01, but of course no one at DEC 
(that you can reach) knows anything about it.  I found another 
supplier Seacost Digital (603-642-6222) that seems to know a lot
about MicroVax cables, but they want $25 for it, which seems a little
steep.  Good people to know about though.

> This attaches the control panel to the backplane I believe (and makes it 
> possible to assert RESET and HALT on the Qbus.) If it was polarized I'm 
> suprised that the connector wasn't polarized as well. DEC is very good 
> about those things. Perhaps there was change from the MVII.

Now, on your point below, I tried the command SET HOST/MAINT/MSCP 0
while the controller was set in command mode, and got "ILL CMD".  I
couldn't find a way to talk to the drive in the way you mentioned.
When I finally got it to work, it was set as DUA2, which is fine 
for the moment, but I'd eventually like to get a DUA0, DUA1, DUA2
set up.

> When the controller is in program mode, the drive 0 plug will specify the 
> drive you wish to talk to, then you can type SET HOST/MAINT/MSCP 0 talk to 
> it and set its parameters. It will also tell you some interesting things 
> about the drive such as how many times it has been power cycled, how many 
> hours it has been running etc.

One other small point.  I also tried to make some homegrown IDC cables
to connect the drives.  But the 10-pin connectors I got, while fine
on the control panel end, were too fat on the drive end.  Are there
different types of 10-pin IDC connectors available, or is this a 
special DEC connector?