Subject: RE: When it rains VAXen it pours VAXen....(:+}}...
To: 'NetBSD Bob' <>
From: Carlini, Antonio <>
List: port-vax
Date: 10/13/2000 08:22:14
NetBSD Bob wrote:

>2.  What is the largest drive size the hardware will handle?
>    I have several RZ55/56/57 drives plus some 2 gig Fuji's,
>    all from DEC expansion boxes that I would like to load up

Physically I don't think that they make drives as big as 
the RD54 anymore :-) so you should be OK with almost anything
you can lay your hands on.

>    into the thing, if possible.  Are there any hardware limits
>    on primary or secondary drives on the MVII?  Most of my other
>    DEC things seem to not like bigger than a 1 gig drive on the
>    primary boot ID of 0.

The MicroVAX II never had a SCSI controller available for it from
DEC so any limits that may apply must depend on your controller.
The only machines with limits that DEC never raised were the
VAXstation 3100 series and maybe the MicroVAX 3100 Model 10/20. 
The MicrovAX 3100 Model 10e (and 20e) had an upgraded set of ROMs
available and all the rest shipped with >1GB functionality anyway.

>3.  How many scsi drives will the thing actually handle?  It has

As many as your controller card can handle - probably seven.

>    1 spare bay where the old crazy DEC dual floppy went, and
>    it has three spare bays under the TK70 tape bay.  Logic would
>    say 4 drives would work, but what will that power supply really
>    handle (horror stories of burning MVI crates kind of thing)?

You have a BA123 and they don't burn. The horror stories were about the
(smaller) BA23 - none of mine ever burnt but apparently some could

>5.  What is needed to hook up a second tape drive into the thing?  I have
>    a spare TK50 that I would like to try adding into the machine where
>    the old floppy went, as a secondary tape drive for writing boot tapes.
>    Anything strange in adding a TK50 where the old floppy went?
>    (Dip switch addressing and that kind of thing?)

You can put the TK50 in any bay you like as long as you have a hole
through which you can insert the tape. You'll need a second tape
controller of course (with the switches set to the secondary
address) and you'll have to route the controller cable yourself
since that was never an expected configuration.

>6.  On a lark, what would be needed to hook up a floppy of some sort
>    into the old dual floppy bay?  Would something like that boot the
>    old Ultix-32M boot floppies?  Can an ordinary AT drive be used or
>    does it need the original DEC dual floppy thing?

I'm pretty sure that if you have an RQDX3 there are instructions
around that describe how to use an RX33 (or perhaps any generic
5-1/4" floppy) with it.

>10. I need to make up a regular MMJ to DB9 console cable.  Can someone
>    point me to the pinouts for that?  I thought it went by on the list
>    a few weeks back, but am unable to backtrack to it.  A url is fine,
>    or if it is handy just tack it onto a reply to me.

This used to be in either the VMS FAQ or the DECstation FAQ.
It's in the back of many of the DECserver manuals - precisely none
of which are to hand right now. If you cannot dig it out, mail me
and I'll find it.

>11. Since I am short on ram, will a DEC 8 meg ram board from my MV3300
>    work in the MVII?  The memory bus cable is there, so if it will work
>    it is just a plug and connect kind of thing.  If not, anyone got a

It will not work. At all.

>    spare 4 or 8 meg ram board for an MVII?  I am assuming I can add
>    an 8 meg board for 12 or 13 megs total?  Does it shadow the onboard
>    1 meg of ram?

The onboard 1MB is always used until you reach 16MB of RAM on external
boards. Then it gets disabled because the memory controller can only handle
16MB max.

>12. What were the prom commands for the KA630?  The only thing I could
>    get it to do was boot.  Veddy dumb, even compared to the KA640 cpu.

Yup - there were very few commands.

>    No show dev and no test 75 even.  How does one low-level format on
>    the MVII (from the diags tape?)?

You need the MDM FS tape. I've never seen one but they must exist somewhere.
Even that probably would not do anything to your 3rd party SCSI drive.