getting started with your new HP 21xx
jwest at ezwind.net
Mon Jan 8 13:17:32 CST 2007
It just dawned on me something that might be helpful... a quick list of the
most relevant documents to look at first when you get your first HP 21xx
box. Fortunately, Al at bitsavers has made a concerted effort to put up docs
for these boxes, there's a lot of good info there - probably everything
you'd ever need. Here are the manuals I'd suggest getting first....
For the hardware.....
If you read nothing else, here's the one to read even for folks just curious
what these boxes are. Very short (50 pages), quick read, but informative:
Whoops... wow, apparently there's no 21MX E or 21MX F short user guide on
bitsavers. Wierd! So there's no step by step tutorial on how to use the
front panel, etc. My best suggestion - skim the 2100A user guide. The front
panel is much different, but the instruction set (a subset), I/O
architecture, etc. is pretty much the same. The main difference to keep in
mind... the MX's have a store button. Use it :) 2100's autostore if you incM
or decM or select a different register (select the register you're already
viewing to revert contents). The 2100 doesn't have loader roms cause it's
core (so MX's have a IBL button to load a given rom into upper ram). I need
to get Al a 21MX E or F short user guide to put up on bitsavers, that's a
big omission. The 2100 variant is here:
http://bitsavers.vt100.net/hp/21xx/02100-90001_2100refManDec71.pdf this will
get you the basics of your machine.
Next essential reading to learn about setting up & configuring your
what loader roms are, what they do, how to install them, including source
code listings. Essential for learning all about booting your machine.
what firmware exists, what boards exist for you to install firmware in to,
and how to do so. Includes not just firmware options, but base set firmware
as well. You'll need this, it's the second thing to check if your machine
the different memory boards & controllers & accesories, how to
configure/jumper them and how to install them. Standard Performance memory
only. One of the first things to check and change.
http://bitsavers.vt100.net/hp/1000/5955-4311_highPerfMem_Dec83.pdf same as
above, but for High Performance memory.
For any interface boards in the rear of the computer, see the manuals here:
Now... the heavy duty everything you could possibly need in the future
is the diagnostic configurator manual. It's the program used to load all
other diagnostics. Learn this one well. Note - older diagnostics exist that
are standalone. Some (not all) standalones CAN run under the diagnostic
configurator. I'd suggest just learning the configurator and sticking to the
diagnostics which run under it (all are available).
http://bitsavers.vt100.net/hp/1000/Diagnostics/ is the main directory of
diagnostic manuals. Each diagnostic has it's own manual.
Note: HP diagnostics are (apparently) unlike DEC diagnostics for the 11/45
(my own experience, not neccessarily universal fact). The HP diagnostics
work, and work well/right/AsDocumented. They are extremely thorough. They
ARE the best and recommended test for if a given card is working properly
before proceeding to attempt running anything else. If a card doesn't pass
diags, DONT bother trying to use an OS/application to test it. If the card
doesn't seem to work with the application, the diags ARE the best way to
troubleshoot. They often tell you what section (or chip) on a card is
suspect. The diag manuals on bitsavers aren't the complete set, nor the
latest set. I have been working for some time on putting together a CD that
contains the entire latest (last) diagnostic library for HP1000 stuff,
including all manuals, source code, object code, and assembler output
listings (with memory addresses). That will fix the above lack of info :)
Once you have general 2100/21MX knowledge under your belt from the above, if
there is just one manual you should keep handy... it's the ce handbook. It's
a quick-reference cheat sheet on most of the above manuals. At least in the
CE handbooks I have, little attempt is made to explain anything. It's just
quick reference for jumpers, installation, etc. Note that it also includes
quick reference information for many operating systems & software. The link
For operating systems:
http://bitsavers.vt100.net/hp/2000TSB/ contains the starting point for the
documentation you'll need/want.
Hope this all helps!
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