Microvax II 'primer'?
elson at pico-systems.com
Sun Jan 21 14:02:09 CST 2018
On 01/21/2018 01:25 PM, Jules Richardson via cctalk wrote:
> So, I picked up (and I did just carry it into the house,
> and now I hurt) a Microvax II from another list member
> yesterday. Cosmetically it's a disaster (BA123 has a
> cracked top panel, broken wheels, missing front door,
> missing right-rear panel) but internally it appears to be
> complete; board wise we have:
> M7606 - CPU
> M7608 - 4MB ram
> M9047 - grant continuity
> M7504 - DEQNA ethernet
> M3104 - DHV11 8-port serial
> M7555 - RQDX3 disk controller
> M7546 - TX50 controller
> ... it's got a TK50 and hard drive (no idea of capacity).
> Operational status is a complete unknown, and I have
> absolutely zero knowledge about these systems - so my
> question at this stage is what background reading I need
> to be doing in terms of pre-powerup* checks, actually
> hooking a console, if there's a suggested minimal config I
> can use to diag the CPU, and then (assuming it gets to
> that point) how to actually use the thing (I'm assuming it
> was running VMS rather than Ultrix, but I don't know for
> sure). I'm wondering there aren't any handy tutorials out
> there, alongside whatever DEC docs are recommended.
> * e.g. for most machines I'd be thinking in terms of
> pulling all boards/drives, hooking up a dummy load to
> whatever PSU rails required it, and then at least running
> the PSU up in isolation first, but I don't know to what
> extent this machine requires some logic in place for the
> PSU to even run.
Well, you need to hook up a serial terminal, set the baud
rate, and see if it gives the power-on self diagnostic sequence.
The TK50 is likely not going to work due to deteriorated
rubber rollers and such. Does it have a disk drive?
If not, it won't do much. If it does, it is a bit iffy if
the drive will spin up and unlock heads. I have a similar
setup here, but my SCSI disk drive died. The CPU still
fires up just fine - amazing for a machine I ran for 21 years.
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