MicroVAX 3500 questions - DEC

This is a discussion on MicroVAX 3500 questions - DEC ; I have finally got my hands on a vax. The machine is a MicroVAX 3500 configured with 32MB RAM. As this is the first vax I have ever seen in real life I now have a bunch of questions: Behind ...

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  1. MicroVAX 3500 questions

    I have finally got my hands on a vax. The machine is a MicroVAX 3500
    configured with 32MB RAM. As this is the first vax I have ever seen in
    real life I now have a bunch of questions:

    Behind the CPU panel there is a white battery attached to the PCB
    (with the screen, switches, console port). What is this battery for
    and how important is it? Does it need replacing or will the system be
    fine without it? (It is making a bit of a mess at the moment)

    Behind a grill in the top left corner of the case there is a panel of
    four 8-pin ports. There are no cables going to these ports and there
    is nothing plugged in to them. They are numbered 0-3. What are they
    for?

    I have read that the C-D slots in the BA213 QBus backplane are just a
    C-D interconnect. What are the likely reasons for this sytem to have a
    grant continuity card in slot 9CD and a "WQDHV/02" card installed in
    slot 8CD? The system is missing the covers for slots 12, 11 and 10 -
    maybe there used to be something installed in there?

    The back of the case has two stickers. The second slightly covers the
    first sticker. It contains a second model number "CA-MX47G-BD" and the
    text "DUAL MV3500 PART#2" - what does this mean?

    Im sure there are probably manuals out there that cover this sort of
    thing but so far my searches have only turned up the manual for the
    DELQA ethernet controller.

    Any answers are much appreciated.
    - David Goodwin

  2. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions

    On May 15, 1:08 pm, dgsof...@gmail.com (David Goodwin) wrote:
    > I have finally got my hands on a vax. The machine is a MicroVAX 3500
    > configured with 32MB RAM. As this is the first vax I have ever seen in
    > real life I now have a bunch of questions:
    >
    > Behind the CPU panel there is a white battery attached to the PCB
    > (with the screen, switches, console port). What is this battery for
    > and how important is it? Does it need replacing or will the system be
    > fine without it? (It is making a bit of a mess at the moment)
    >
    > Behind a grill in the top left corner of the case there is a panel of
    > four 8-pin ports. There are no cables going to these ports and there
    > is nothing plugged in to them. They are numbered 0-3. What are they
    > for?
    >
    > I have read that the C-D slots in the BA213 QBus backplane are just a
    > C-D interconnect. What are the likely reasons for this sytem to have a
    > grant continuity card in slot 9CD and a "WQDHV/02" card installed in
    > slot 8CD? The system is missing the covers for slots 12, 11 and 10 -
    > maybe there used to be something installed in there?
    >
    > The back of the case has two stickers. The second slightly covers the
    > first sticker. It contains a second model number "CA-MX47G-BD" and the
    > text "DUAL MV3500 PART#2" - what does this mean?
    >
    > Im sure there are probably manuals out there that cover this sort of
    > thing but so far my searches have only turned up the manual for the
    > DELQA ethernet controller.
    >
    > Any answers are much appreciated.
    > - David Goodwin


    David,
    visit Google groups and enter the search string "microvax 3500". The
    amount of hits is enough to get you going.
    HP still has some documentation on-line:

    http://h18002.www1.hp.com/alphaserve...ve/mv3500.html

    It's been too long, I'm sure my memory is not accurate anymore. Didn't
    the 3500 have an RA82 drive in the top of the cabinet?
    The cpu runs at around 3 VUPS. The 3400/3500/3600 models didn't have
    DSSI nor SCSI, they're equiped with KDA50 controllers
    for the disks.
    The battery powers the nvram. If it's dead, each time the system boots
    it will ask what language you want for the console.
    It won't remember the default boot device, what to do at power up or
    after a failure and so on.
    It's an inconvenience but the system will boot without it.
    If you get to the >>> prompt, try ? or HELP
    Try SHO DEV or SHO ALL to list its hardware configuration. DUA0, DUB1
    etc are disks (try >>> B DUA0)
    MUA0 is the tape drive, if present.
    Good luck,
    Hans

  3. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions

    On Thu, 15 May 2008 14:09:32 -0700 (PDT), H Vlems
    wrote:

    >David,
    >visit Google groups and enter the search string "microvax 3500". The
    >amount of hits is enough to get you going.
    >HP still has some documentation on-line:
    >
    >http://h18002.www1.hp.com/alphaserve...ve/mv3500.html
    >
    >It's been too long, I'm sure my memory is not accurate anymore. Didn't
    >the 3500 have an RA82 drive in the top of the cabinet?
    >The cpu runs at around 3 VUPS. The 3400/3500/3600 models didn't have
    >DSSI nor SCSI, they're equiped with KDA50 controllers
    >for the disks.
    >The battery powers the nvram. If it's dead, each time the system boots
    >it will ask what language you want for the console.
    >It won't remember the default boot device, what to do at power up or
    >after a failure and so on.
    >It's an inconvenience but the system will boot without it.
    >If you get to the >>> prompt, try ? or HELP
    >Try SHO DEV or SHO ALL to list its hardware configuration. DUA0, DUB1
    >etc are disks (try >>> B DUA0)
    >MUA0 is the tape drive, if present.
    >Good luck,
    >Hans


    Thanks for the information. I guess I will just pull the battery out
    so it doesnt make any more of a mess than it already has. Considering
    the amount of green on the console ports contacts the PCB is going to
    need quite a bit of cleaning before I wire up an adapter cable.

    Ive put some images of the four ports, label and cards on google:
    http://picasaweb.google.com/dgsoftnz/MicroVAX3500/

    This machine has no hard disk but that probably isnt too bad -
    considering how long it has taken to get just a vax I dont think I
    could ever find replacement SDI disks. Im considering disconnecting
    the TK70 drive for about the same reason - the tape in the drive has
    snapped making the machine rather noisy.

    Ive pulled the machine apart a bit and it has (from right to left) a
    TK70 drive, the operator control panel and those port things. It has
    the following cards installed:
    1* KA650 CPU board (M7620 according to the panel, M7626 according to
    the board)
    2* 16MB MOS Memory cards (M7622)
    2* Grant Continuity cards (M9047)
    1* TK70 controller (M7559)
    1* DELQA Ethernet controller (M7516)
    1* CMD CQD-220/TM (SCSI I think)
    1* CMD CQD-220/M (also SCSI I think)
    2* Webster Computer Corp. WQDHV11/02 (no idea what these are)

    If the two CMD cards are SCSI I suppose I could attach a hard disk to
    one of those and boot off that. Otherwise, maybe there is some way I
    can network boot OpenVMS from my AlphaServer 1200.

    Thanks,
    David Goodwin

  4. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions


    Welcome to the VAXen world!

    The battery thing has already been touched on, but I'll just add that
    I removed the battery from my systems, as they've long since dried
    up.

    The panel of 4-pin connectors is "SDI", which lets you attach external
    RA8x/RA9x drives. Those drives are rare as hen's teeth at this point
    (I have had an eBay search watching for an RA8x within 150 miles of me
    for over a year, and none have come up), and, to put the final nail in
    the SDI coffin, you don't have the KDA50 to go with them. According to
    the list of boards in your system, someone removed the KDA50 (which
    was two boards) and probably replaced the board set with the two grant
    cards.

    (The 3500 didn't ship with an RA8x on top; that's what a 3600 is. The
    3300 and 3400 did ship with DSSI built-in; I have a MicroVAX 3300
    that's been converted to a PDP-11 using a KFQSA DSSI card.)

    The grant card in 8CD doesn't make sense at all, altough I guess it
    does hold up the other card in slot 8. There are inserts that are
    designed specifically for that purpose, but knowing how cobbled
    together your system looks, I'm guessing the previous owner just
    didn't have some of those inserts.

    The DHV11 in 9CD looks to me like the previous owner just had a bunch
    of cards and wanted to fill the backplane. I can relate; I have a
    MicroVAX 3/GPX in a BA123, and I filled just about every slot in the
    backplane with something. But in a BA213, the CD doesn't do anything
    except provide power (and has some data lines in the first few slots
    that are used by the CPU and memory to speed up memory accesses), so
    that second DHV isn't doing any good. Not that a DHV is really all
    that useful in the first place, unless you have a lot of serial
    devices -- DHV11 is the model number of DEC's 8-port RS232 serial
    card. I think the ports were buffered, from what I recall, so the
    DHV11 was a more appropriate choice for telephony applications, but
    none of that is really relevant anymore.

    I wouldn't pay any attention to the stickers anymore, especially
    knowing how much the system has been rearranged. The stickers indicate
    what the original configuration was when it was shipped from DEC.

    The CQD cards are actually quite a find. Those two boards alone are
    worth the price of admission. The CQD-220's are SCSI cards. The "M"
    means that it's MSCP, which means it supports disks. The "TM" means it
    does both MSCP and TMSCP, so that's a universal card that supports
    both disks and tapes.

    Don't pay any attention to the M7620, since that's just what the
    person had available. The M7626 on the board actually indicates that
    it's a KA660, which is a VAX 4000/200 CPU. Not bad! That's the fastest
    CPU you can install in a BA213, without going through the forklift-
    upgrade to move up to a 4000/300 or newer. The 4000/200 is 5 VUP,
    whereas the 3500 the system was originally configured as was a 2.7 VUP
    system.


    Ah, yes, the now nearly useless system configuration details that I
    can recall from memory at will... Oh well, at least it helps someone
    on occasion. ;-)


    Chris

  5. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions

    On 16 mei, 06:01, dgsof...@gmail.com (David Goodwin) wrote:
    > On Thu, 15 May 2008 14:09:32 -0700 (PDT), H Vlems
    > wrote:
    >
    >
    >
    > >David,
    > >visit Google groups and enter the search string "microvax 3500". The
    > >amount of hits is enough to get you going.
    > >HP still has some documentation on-line:

    >
    > >http://h18002.www1.hp.com/alphaserve...ve/mv3500.html

    >
    > >It's been too long, I'm sure my memory is not accurate anymore. Didn't
    > >the 3500 have an RA82 drive in the top of the cabinet?
    > >The cpu runs at around 3 VUPS. The 3400/3500/3600 models didn't have
    > >DSSI nor SCSI, they're equiped with KDA50 controllers
    > >for the disks.
    > >The battery powers the nvram. If it's dead, each time the system boots
    > >it will ask what language you want for the console.
    > >It won't remember the default boot device, what to do at power up or
    > >after a failure and so on.
    > >It's an inconvenience but the system will boot without it.
    > >If you get to the >>> prompt, try ? or HELP
    > >Try SHO DEV or SHO ALL to list its hardware configuration. DUA0, DUB1
    > >etc are disks (try >>> B DUA0)
    > >MUA0 is the tape drive, if present.
    > >Good luck,
    > >Hans

    >
    > Thanks for the information. I guess I will just pull the battery out
    > so it doesnt make any more of a mess than it already has. Considering
    > the amount of green on the console ports contacts the PCB is going to
    > need quite a bit of cleaning before I wire up an adapter cable.
    >
    > Ive put some images of the four ports, label and cards on google:http://picasaweb.google.com/dgsoftnz/MicroVAX3500/
    >
    > This machine has no hard disk but that probably isnt too bad -
    > considering how long it has taken to get just a vax I dont think I
    > could ever find replacement SDI disks. Im considering disconnecting
    > the TK70 drive for about the same reason - the tape in the drive has
    > snapped making the machine rather noisy.
    >
    > Ive pulled the machine apart a bit and it has (from right to left) a
    > TK70 drive, the operator control panel and those port things. It has
    > the following cards installed:
    > 1* KA650 CPU board (M7620 according to the panel, M7626 according to
    > the board)
    > 2* 16MB MOS Memory cards (M7622)
    > 2* Grant Continuity cards (M9047)
    > 1* TK70 controller (M7559)
    > 1* DELQA Ethernet controller (M7516)
    > 1* CMD CQD-220/TM (SCSI I think)
    > 1* CMD CQD-220/M (also SCSI I think)
    > 2* Webster Computer Corp. WQDHV11/02 (no idea what these are)
    >
    > If the two CMD cards are SCSI I suppose I could attach a hard disk to
    > one of those and boot off that. Otherwise, maybe there is some way I
    > can network boot OpenVMS from my AlphaServer 1200.
    >
    > Thanks,
    > David Goodwin


    David,
    picture 4 is the panel that connects to RA disks. As Chris mentioned,
    there is no longer a KDA50 in the system, but these are not really
    rare. The disks are a different matter. The RA81 (456 MB) or RA82
    (622MB) are rare. An RA81 would fit, but at 121 MB it's rather
    useless. Alternatives are the RA70 or RA72 but I'm not sure there is a
    way of fitting those. The RA90 (1 GB) or RA92 (1.2 GB) are each half
    the size of an RA8x disk and these might be available somewhere. The
    RA8x and RA9x drives take a *lot* of mains power for relatively little
    storage. The RA7x drives are about the size of an RD54. A little more
    storage though, and as Chris mentioned, you're blessed with SCSI
    controllers that support disks, so buy a couple of 4 GB drives, a
    CDrom drive and install VAX/VMS.
    Booting over ethernet probably works on a 4200. Booting off an AS1200
    only works if you have a VAX/VMS system disk on it. I've never tried
    to boot a VAX off an installation CD in an Alpha. What does work is
    install VMS on a simh (emulated) VAX, and boot the 4200 as a satellite
    node in a local area cluster. It is probably the fastest way to boot
    the 4200 and get VMS on it without scsi peripherals.
    Hans

  6. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions

    H Vlems wrote:
    > On 16 mei, 06:01, dgsof...@gmail.com (David Goodwin) wrote:
    >> On Thu, 15 May 2008 14:09:32 -0700 (PDT), H Vlems
    >> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>
    >>> David,
    >>> visit Google groups and enter the search string "microvax 3500". The
    >>> amount of hits is enough to get you going.
    >>> HP still has some documentation on-line:
    >>> http://h18002.www1.hp.com/alphaserve...ve/mv3500.html
    >>> It's been too long, I'm sure my memory is not accurate anymore. Didn't
    >>> the 3500 have an RA82 drive in the top of the cabinet?
    >>> The cpu runs at around 3 VUPS. The 3400/3500/3600 models didn't have
    >>> DSSI nor SCSI, they're equiped with KDA50 controllers
    >>> for the disks.
    >>> The battery powers the nvram. If it's dead, each time the system boots
    >>> it will ask what language you want for the console.
    >>> It won't remember the default boot device, what to do at power up or
    >>> after a failure and so on.
    >>> It's an inconvenience but the system will boot without it.
    >>> If you get to the >>> prompt, try ? or HELP
    >>> Try SHO DEV or SHO ALL to list its hardware configuration. DUA0, DUB1
    >>> etc are disks (try >>> B DUA0)
    >>> MUA0 is the tape drive, if present.
    >>> Good luck,
    >>> Hans

    >> Thanks for the information. I guess I will just pull the battery out
    >> so it doesnt make any more of a mess than it already has. Considering
    >> the amount of green on the console ports contacts the PCB is going to
    >> need quite a bit of cleaning before I wire up an adapter cable.
    >>
    >> Ive put some images of the four ports, label and cards on google:http://picasaweb.google.com/dgsoftnz/MicroVAX3500/
    >>
    >> This machine has no hard disk but that probably isnt too bad -
    >> considering how long it has taken to get just a vax I dont think I
    >> could ever find replacement SDI disks. Im considering disconnecting
    >> the TK70 drive for about the same reason - the tape in the drive has
    >> snapped making the machine rather noisy.
    >>
    >> Ive pulled the machine apart a bit and it has (from right to left) a
    >> TK70 drive, the operator control panel and those port things. It has
    >> the following cards installed:
    >> 1* KA650 CPU board (M7620 according to the panel, M7626 according to
    >> the board)
    >> 2* 16MB MOS Memory cards (M7622)
    >> 2* Grant Continuity cards (M9047)
    >> 1* TK70 controller (M7559)
    >> 1* DELQA Ethernet controller (M7516)
    >> 1* CMD CQD-220/TM (SCSI I think)
    >> 1* CMD CQD-220/M (also SCSI I think)
    >> 2* Webster Computer Corp. WQDHV11/02 (no idea what these are)
    >>
    >> If the two CMD cards are SCSI I suppose I could attach a hard disk to
    >> one of those and boot off that. Otherwise, maybe there is some way I
    >> can network boot OpenVMS from my AlphaServer 1200.
    >>
    >> Thanks,
    >> David Goodwin

    >
    > David,
    > picture 4 is the panel that connects to RA disks. As Chris mentioned,
    > there is no longer a KDA50 in the system, but these are not really
    > rare. The disks are a different matter. The RA81 (456 MB) or RA82
    > (622MB) are rare. An RA81 would fit, but at 121 MB it's rather
    > useless. Alternatives are the RA70 or RA72 but I'm not sure there is a
    > way of fitting those. The RA90 (1 GB) or RA92 (1.2 GB) are each half
    > the size of an RA8x disk and these might be available somewhere. The
    > RA8x and RA9x drives take a *lot* of mains power for relatively little
    > storage. The RA7x drives are about the size of an RD54. A little more
    > storage though, and as Chris mentioned, you're blessed with SCSI
    > controllers that support disks, so buy a couple of 4 GB drives, a
    > CDrom drive and install VAX/VMS.
    > Booting over ethernet probably works on a 4200. Booting off an AS1200
    > only works if you have a VAX/VMS system disk on it. I've never tried
    > to boot a VAX off an installation CD in an Alpha. What does work is
    > install VMS on a simh (emulated) VAX, and boot the 4200 as a satellite
    > node in a local area cluster. It is probably the fastest way to boot
    > the 4200 and get VMS on it without scsi peripherals.
    > Hans



    I agree with Hans that the RA* disks are something you might want to
    forget if you don't plan to find another cabinet for disks. I don't know
    any way how to install any of them into a BA213 box. The RA70's are full
    height 5.25" and are the smallest the RA90's are even bigger ant the
    RA80's need a 19" wide space.
    The SCSI disks would be the most clever option to use. Especially if you
    find a BA350 or BA356 (with the 8-bit personality module). Into that you
    can install several SCSI disks (and even a CD-ROM drive with the
    appropriate SBB).

    If you run OpenVMS Alpha V8.3 on your AS1200, you can mount the VAX/VMS
    operating system CD and then create an Infoserver service for it. Then
    you copy the isl_svax.sys to the MOM$SYSTEM directory on the AS1200 and
    boot the VAX interactively using the DELQA interface.
    >>> B/100

    bootfile: ISL_SVAX.SYS

    When it has loaded the ISL image, you can find the Infoserver service
    from the network and then connect to it to install the VAX/VMS on your
    VAX. I guess you are familiar with installing VAX/VMS? It differs from
    installing the AXPVMS.


    Good Luck!


    Best Regards,

    Kari


    P.S. If you decide not to use the RA disk panel, I would like to discuss
    its future with you.

  7. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions

    David,

    As Chris says, those CMD CQD cards are indeed Qbus-based SCSI
    controllers. You can find manuals for them at Silicon Image's website,
    since they bought out CMD years ago:

    http://www.siliconimage.com/support/index.aspx

    Click on the "Knowledge Base" link at the left of the page, then follow
    the folder menu to "CMD Systems Products" --> CQD Series.

    Enjoy!

    --Alex



    David Goodwin wrote:
    > On Thu, 15 May 2008 14:09:32 -0700 (PDT), H Vlems
    > wrote:
    >
    >> David,
    >> visit Google groups and enter the search string "microvax 3500". The
    >> amount of hits is enough to get you going.
    >> HP still has some documentation on-line:
    >>
    >> http://h18002.www1.hp.com/alphaserve...ve/mv3500.html
    >>
    >> It's been too long, I'm sure my memory is not accurate anymore. Didn't
    >> the 3500 have an RA82 drive in the top of the cabinet?
    >> The cpu runs at around 3 VUPS. The 3400/3500/3600 models didn't have
    >> DSSI nor SCSI, they're equiped with KDA50 controllers
    >> for the disks.
    >> The battery powers the nvram. If it's dead, each time the system boots
    >> it will ask what language you want for the console.
    >> It won't remember the default boot device, what to do at power up or
    >> after a failure and so on.
    >> It's an inconvenience but the system will boot without it.
    >> If you get to the >>> prompt, try ? or HELP
    >> Try SHO DEV or SHO ALL to list its hardware configuration. DUA0, DUB1
    >> etc are disks (try >>> B DUA0)
    >> MUA0 is the tape drive, if present.
    >> Good luck,
    >> Hans

    >
    > Thanks for the information. I guess I will just pull the battery out
    > so it doesnt make any more of a mess than it already has. Considering
    > the amount of green on the console ports contacts the PCB is going to
    > need quite a bit of cleaning before I wire up an adapter cable.
    >
    > Ive put some images of the four ports, label and cards on google:
    > http://picasaweb.google.com/dgsoftnz/MicroVAX3500/
    >
    > This machine has no hard disk but that probably isnt too bad -
    > considering how long it has taken to get just a vax I dont think I
    > could ever find replacement SDI disks. Im considering disconnecting
    > the TK70 drive for about the same reason - the tape in the drive has
    > snapped making the machine rather noisy.
    >
    > Ive pulled the machine apart a bit and it has (from right to left) a
    > TK70 drive, the operator control panel and those port things. It has
    > the following cards installed:
    > 1* KA650 CPU board (M7620 according to the panel, M7626 according to
    > the board)
    > 2* 16MB MOS Memory cards (M7622)
    > 2* Grant Continuity cards (M9047)
    > 1* TK70 controller (M7559)
    > 1* DELQA Ethernet controller (M7516)
    > 1* CMD CQD-220/TM (SCSI I think)
    > 1* CMD CQD-220/M (also SCSI I think)
    > 2* Webster Computer Corp. WQDHV11/02 (no idea what these are)
    >
    > If the two CMD cards are SCSI I suppose I could attach a hard disk to
    > one of those and boot off that. Otherwise, maybe there is some way I
    > can network boot OpenVMS from my AlphaServer 1200.
    >
    > Thanks,
    > David Goodwin


  8. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions

    On Fri, 16 May 2008 07:04:04 -0700 (PDT), ChrisKalisiak
    wrote:

    >
    >Welcome to the VAXen world!
    >
    >The battery thing has already been touched on, but I'll just add that
    >I removed the battery from my systems, as they've long since dried
    >up.
    >
    >The panel of 4-pin connectors is "SDI", which lets you attach external
    >RA8x/RA9x drives. Those drives are rare as hen's teeth at this point
    >(I have had an eBay search watching for an RA8x within 150 miles of me
    >for over a year, and none have come up), and, to put the final nail in
    >the SDI coffin, you don't have the KDA50 to go with them. According to
    >the list of boards in your system, someone removed the KDA50 (which
    >was two boards) and probably replaced the board set with the two grant
    >cards.
    >
    >(The 3500 didn't ship with an RA8x on top; that's what a 3600 is. The
    >3300 and 3400 did ship with DSSI built-in; I have a MicroVAX 3300
    >that's been converted to a PDP-11 using a KFQSA DSSI card.)
    >
    >The grant card in 8CD doesn't make sense at all, altough I guess it
    >does hold up the other card in slot 8. There are inserts that are
    >designed specifically for that purpose, but knowing how cobbled
    >together your system looks, I'm guessing the previous owner just
    >didn't have some of those inserts.
    >
    >The DHV11 in 9CD looks to me like the previous owner just had a bunch
    >of cards and wanted to fill the backplane. I can relate; I have a
    >MicroVAX 3/GPX in a BA123, and I filled just about every slot in the
    >backplane with something. But in a BA213, the CD doesn't do anything
    >except provide power (and has some data lines in the first few slots
    >that are used by the CPU and memory to speed up memory accesses), so
    >that second DHV isn't doing any good. Not that a DHV is really all
    >that useful in the first place, unless you have a lot of serial
    >devices -- DHV11 is the model number of DEC's 8-port RS232 serial
    >card. I think the ports were buffered, from what I recall, so the
    >DHV11 was a more appropriate choice for telephony applications, but
    >none of that is really relevant anymore.
    >
    >I wouldn't pay any attention to the stickers anymore, especially
    >knowing how much the system has been rearranged. The stickers indicate
    >what the original configuration was when it was shipped from DEC.
    >
    >The CQD cards are actually quite a find. Those two boards alone are
    >worth the price of admission. The CQD-220's are SCSI cards. The "M"
    >means that it's MSCP, which means it supports disks. The "TM" means it
    >does both MSCP and TMSCP, so that's a universal card that supports
    >both disks and tapes.
    >
    >Don't pay any attention to the M7620, since that's just what the
    >person had available. The M7626 on the board actually indicates that
    >it's a KA660, which is a VAX 4000/200 CPU. Not bad! That's the fastest
    >CPU you can install in a BA213, without going through the forklift-
    >upgrade to move up to a 4000/300 or newer. The 4000/200 is 5 VUP,
    >whereas the 3500 the system was originally configured as was a 2.7 VUP
    >system.
    >
    >
    >Ah, yes, the now nearly useless system configuration details that I
    >can recall from memory at will... Oh well, at least it helps someone
    >on occasion. ;-)


    Hi,
    I do have one of those blank plastic cards installed in 7CD - I guess
    others may have been kept by the original owner along with any disks
    and the controller. The machine came from HortResearch (formerly a
    part of the New Zealand Department of Scientific and Industrial
    Research) so they probably removed the disks before getting rid of the
    machine years ago for data security reasons.

    It looks as if the DHV cards are probably fairly useless as I dont
    have what ever cable used to plug into the big connector on the top
    edge of the card. I have a DECserver 100 so I suppose I could just use
    that if I ever needed to attach a bunch of serial terminals to the
    machine.

    After another look at my images it looks as if I misread the 5 as
    being a 6 making it actually an M7625. According to the QBus field
    guide that makes it a KA655-BA (workstation license). I assume the
    hobbyist licenses for VMS dont take any notice of the workstation bit.

  9. Re: MicroVAX 3500 questions


    Hello,

    > I do have one of those blank plastic cards installed in 7CD - I guess
    > others may have been kept by the original owner along with any disks
    > and the controller.


    I wouldn't necessarily say that the original owner kept them, the
    parts were probably removed because of an upgrade. The SCSI cards are
    certainly an upgrade from the KDA50.

    >The machine came from HortResearch (formerly a
    > part of the New Zealand Department of Scientific and Industrial
    > Research) so they probably removed the disks before getting rid of the
    > machine years ago for data security reasons.


    Sure, that would make sense.

    > After another look at my images it looks as if I misread the 5 as
    > being a 6 making it actually an M7625. According to the QBus field
    > guide that makes it a KA655-BA (workstation license). I assume the
    > hobbyist licenses for VMS dont take any notice of the workstation bit.- Hide quoted text -


    The KA655 is between the original KA650 and KA660 in performance, and
    still respectable, for a VAX. The -BA means that you can only have two
    people logged in to the system, so it was either a "VAXstation" (less
    likely) or a "VAXserver" (more likely -- where it's just a file/print
    server), and not a timeshare system.

    Regarding installing RA drives in the BA213, it is certainly possible
    to do so, but the 4-way internal cable is extremely difficult to find.
    I've been looking for one on-and-off for a year now, and haven't come
    across one. My BA123-based VAXstation 3/GPX has a KDA50 with four RA7x
    drives installed using one of those cables, and I've been looking for
    another one for a BA23 so it can have an RA7x disk installed in it.

    Chris

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