downloading & installing using VMSINSTAL problems

Zane H. Healy healyzh at
Tue Jan 24 22:29:55 CST 2006

At 9:17 PM -0600 1/24/06, compoobah at wrote:
>I am trying to install some layered products on my AXP-VMS machine 
>(VX42 Multia running v7.3-1) and I keep running into the same error.
>  for $@sys$update:vmsinstal (product, tried with CXX065 and 
>AXP_DECWRITE31A) dka0:[install_sets] options n
>  it prints "error reading dka0:[install_sets] AXP_DECWRITE31A.A
>               software block CRC error
>               invalid block size in save set
>               invalid record size in save set
>               invalid record size in save set"

Check the freeware CD's or VMS FAQ, there should be something on them 
about fixing the file attributes after they get munged by FTP.  If 
you could go straight to the VMS system that should also cure the 
problem, as it's introduced by transferring the files to a non-VMS 

>  What am I doing wrong, or is it just my cheap equipment (other 
>weirdness- when DECwindows starts it locks up the keyboard - 
>bizarre, don't know if this is a Multia+VMS problem or an issue with 
>the Multia+VMS+SGI keyboard. I'll have to do some testing),

Have you got a KVM on there?  I had problems with my Multia loosing 
the keyboard on a KVM.  I think I only had DEC keyboards, but an SGI 
PS/2 keyboard should work.

>      What's a good baseline for Alphas in terms of usability with 
>VMS7.3+? the 233MHz LCA seems to be not much faster than a 
>VAXstation 3100/76, and if I do find another Alpha, I don't want to 
>spend a lot on something that creaks along (and I know what the SPEC 
>scores say- but this VX42 is not up where other machines scoring 
>~100 SPECxx 92 are in basic useability)

The Multia is a bad choice, as are the DEC 3000 series.  An 
AlphaStation 200 4/233 or better would be OK, but a DEC PWS 433au or 
better would be an even better choice.  One thing to pay close 
attention to is RAM.  The realistic minimum is 128MB, but really you 
want 192MB or more.  Watch out for systems that take non-standard 
RAM, such as the AlphaStation 500, if you get one, make sure it has 
all the RAM you'll want.  I bought my AlphaStation 500/333 from 
Compaq for a sizeable chunk of change right after they bought DEC, 
I've never really used it, as more RAM was to expensive, it turned 
out to be cheaper to get a DEC PWS 433au!  Oh, the spec's on a 
AlphaStation 200 4/233 say it can only go up to 384MB (6x64Mb), in 
reality it can go up to 768MB (6x128Mb), the trick is finding 128MB 
72-pin true parity SIMM's!


| Zane H. Healy                    | UNIX Systems Administrator |
| healyzh at (primary)    | OpenVMS Enthusiast         |
| MONK::HEALYZH (DECnet)           | Classic Computer Collector |
|     Empire of the Petal Throne and Traveller Role Playing,    |
|          PDP-10 Emulation and Zane's Computer Museum.         |
|                     |

More information about the cctech mailing list