Classics long overdue a Boot.

ethan at ethan at
Fri May 20 14:38:30 CDT 2016

> Damn, Ethan, you have had more SGI's than I have. That's freakin' saying
> something, and you don't seem to mind the big ones, either. Then again,
> all you British folks live in large country estates, right? :-)

Bought my first Indigo from Reputable Systems. I then started to go to the 
auctions at NASA Langley Research Center. From there I'd pick up odds and 
ends, and from time to time trade some hardware for others and such. I'd 
sell the stuff I didn't want that was bundled into the lots (you had to 
buy whole lots.) Eventually I ended up working in the supercomputing 
facility at NASA as an IRIX admin/Solaris admin/Linux admin. When SGI shut 
their Hampton Va office down I ended up with some of the excess. Because 
it was given to me, I never sold any of it I paid it forward and gave it 
away to others. As my personal stuff aged I ended up giving some of it 
away as well, mainly Indys and such.

> "Blokehappy Hollow" etc.. However, despite the name, they frequently don't
> have 220v L630 twist lock whips, 3-phase power, or anything else that
> makes life as a Big-SGI collector easy. :-P

I used to plug the Onyx into a normal outlet, I just had it lightly 
loaded? I have tons of pics of stuff from them days, I just need to sort 
it all.

The way I ended up at NASA is someone I knew from the BBS scene who also 
messed around in the DOS virus scene (loong story) came to visit and he 
saw the stacks of SGI Indys in the dining room running ISP functions and 
was like, "EWWW YOU LIKE THIS SHIT?" I said yea, he said give me your 
resume then. Boom, NASA contractor. He was pro linux anti SGI/Sun. Heh.

> My favorite is actually the Tezro. I love the crossbar architecture, and
> it's basically (same procs same RAM etc..) a mini Origin 3k supercomputer.
> It's just a brusin' bad-dude of a graphics workstation. Stick a dmedia rig
> on there and it's graphics/video heaven (even HD). The machine feels much
> faster than 4x1Ghz. Even browsers run fast. To me, this is the "high art"
> intersection of electrical engineering, Unix, and design-friendly
> philosophy. I just need to get mine to 16GB of RAM and I'll be in
> hog-heaven (a very loud fan-blown heaven, but still). I've got my Tezro
> all beefed up with SSD drives too (acard 3.5" converters used and work
> very nicely). Yesterday I put it on my living room coffee table to cheer
> me up when I come home from work (I have no kids, dog, life, hehe). Is
> that a bit much ?
> The Octane is also a really wonderful platform for many of the same
> reasons as the Tezro. I don't currently own one, but I've got room for one
> more SGI, and I think it'll be either a Fuel or an Octane2. I just need to
> find one with skins in good condition and a decent CPU. It'll probably be
> an Octane2 because the Fuel reminds me too much of a PeeCee. It's like
> when Sun came out with UltraSPARCs and started in with cheapened PeeCee
> sparcstations (my opinion from looking at the guts of those machines and
> comparing with older machines such as the venerable SS10). Still, the
> Fuels are fast and take commodity hardware very easily.

Tezros look killer! I think an Origin 350 would be my other SGI.

> PS: I'm never selling my SGIs unless something exceedingly horrible
> happens. I've even got them in my will. I want them to go to people I
> trust. etc... Nutty? Probably. Such is my life.

I think I know someone that wants to be buried in his. I'm not sure if 
it's strange humor or not?

Ethan O'Toole

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