View Full Version : AlphaPC and the ARC firmware

October 21st, 2013, 08:13 PM
Out of sheer boredom I threw the motherboard of an AlphaPC 21164 (with a 433mhz CPU), a matched DEC SCSI and network card, and one of these (http://manx.classiccmp.org/collections/mds-199909/cd1/sys_opt/pcigroga.pdf) into a case along with a SCSI cd drive and a 4gb compact flash card.
It powers up and I get video and a console but that's my problem. I shouldn't be dumped to a console. According to the manual (http://h18000.www1.hp.com/alphaserver/technology/literature/pc164mum.pdf) I should at least see a bunch of menus in the ARC firmware but instead I get a blue screen with copyright and version info and a >>> prompt which for the most part I don't know much about besides SOUND plays a cute little melody. :)

Any ideas?

Old Thrashbarg
October 21st, 2013, 08:34 PM
That sounds like an SRM console, rather than ARC. I'm betting somebody flashed it so they could run VMS or *BSD. That's what I did with my PC164 board, since NT Alpha isn't exactly useful for much.

October 21st, 2013, 08:51 PM
So it needs the Supplementry FLASH image floppy? I do seem to recall that yeah, the system previously ran VMS. I know I have discs for Tru64 5 and Open VMS 4.2 here somewhere...
How much better is VMS on the Alpha? I already run it on the MicroVAX 2000.

October 21st, 2013, 10:50 PM
Well, Alpha VMS can run CDE instead of oldschool DECWindows, for one.