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Thread: DEC AXPvme questions

  1. #1

    Default DEC AXPvme questions

    Hi Guys,

    I have a few printers running on DEC AXPvme 100 (EBV10 54–24121–02) boards.
    Ive taken to backing up every EEPROM and EPROM I can, just in case they one day die.

    I am a little (more then a little) confused on how to backup the programming on the AXPvme boards.
    I can get to the console (>>>) prompt just fine. But the normal unix commands don't really work as I would expect them too.

    I was also able to pull the Dallas DS1386 Ram/watchdog and back that up.
    That seems to contain some of the startup and some logging.

    From the little ive been able to figure out, I think its running or built on some version of VX works.
    I think that version would have been 3.20 but that’s a guess from the hex dump.

    There is a userflash listed but I cant seem to get into that.

    Any ideas on how I can go about backing it up?

    Thanks!!

  2. #2

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    Just out of curiosity, does AXPvme has the VME P2 adapter board ?

  3. #3

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    Yes, it has the P2 adapter for scsi and a passthrough vme for additional user ports.
    They made 2 versions, one for the single slot and one for the dual slot. Both are pretty much identical parts wise.

  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PhotoMan View Post
    Hi Guys,
    I am a little (more then a little) confused on how to backup the programming on the AXPvme boards.
    I can get to the console (>>>) prompt just fine. But the normal unix commands don't really work as I would expect them too.
    Probably because the >>> prompt is not a Unix prompt, but the Alpha boot ROM. Have you been able to determine if there is a "single user" style boot available for those printer controllers? Why do you think they run a Unix type OS?

  5. #5

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    Later Alpha SRM versions do offer a vaguely *nix-ey set of commands; the firmware on my AlphaPC board does. But that is a later addition; I don't know exactly when it was introduced, but even the last firmware update for my Alpha 3000 300x doesn't have that.
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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruff View Post
    Probably because the >>> prompt is not a Unix prompt, but the Alpha boot ROM. Have you been able to determine if there is a "single user" style boot available for those printer controllers? Why do you think they run a Unix type OS?
    That’s a very good point, I realized that as well. I have no idea how to get to one but while I was thinking about it, I got distracted when a backup AXPvme board I was testing decided to burst into flames.
    A tantalum cap on the back of the board went off in spectacular fashion. Burnt a whole halfway through the PCB. By luck it was mostly between separation in a ground plane.
    It also destroyed the magnetics for communication, still have no idea how or why...its potted. After scrapping the charcoal away and replacing the damaged parts, im still working on getting that board up.

    Anywhoo, back to the OS. I think its some version of Vxworks. I just don't know how to get any further once it boots.
    Any ideas?

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