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Installing a KDA50 in a VAX 4000-500

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    Installing a KDA50 in a VAX 4000-500

    I have finally got around to testing my KDA50 with some RA7x disks. I want to install the KDA50 in my VAX 4000-500. This is a BA440 enclosure. I understand that this enclosure only has Q22/CD slots. The KDA50 User Guide seems to suggest that I need to remove Bus Grant jumpers W2 and W3 for this kind of slot. The jumpers are hard wired resistors.

    I am pretty sure when I first got the KDA50 I briefly installed it without checking the Bus Grant jumpers and it appeared to work in that the LEDS displayed a cycling pattern to suggest that the self test at least was passing. When I did this, my notes show that a second UQSSP controller appeared in the output of SHOW DEVICE and it also showed up at 772150 in the SHOW QBUS command output.

    So, the burning question is this: do I need to remove the hard wired W2 and W3 jumpers? If not, could there be a detrimental effect?

    Thanks

    Rob

    #2
    I don't know the answer to your real question, but regarding the "cycling lights": If the lights go through the cycle repeatedly, then it is rebooting each time. It should go through the cycle one time, then stop at the appropriate pattern (don't remember what that is).

    Trivia: I built the manufacturing functional tester for the controller board - it was my second major project at DEC, in about 1982/83.

    Pete

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by saipan59 View Post
      I don't know the answer to your real question, but regarding the "cycling lights": If the lights go through the cycle repeatedly, then it is rebooting each time. It should go through the cycle one time, then stop at the appropriate pattern (don't remember what that is).

      Trivia: I built the manufacturing functional tester for the controller board - it was my second major project at DEC, in about 1982/83.

      Pete
      The normal pattern for the KDA50 is the same as the UDA50. Once up and running, it is usually no lights on. But at a regular interval, it just do a running light through all the LEDs. That's the normal idle indication. It's very different from the startup test steps, so it's easy to tell them apart.

      As for the W2,W3 jumpers. I suspect you might get away with not removing them, especially if you don't have anything else using the CD slots. But otherwise it might interfere, or even create shorts. I would recommend you do remove them.

      Comment


        #4
        I removed the W2 and W3 jumpers and successfully installed the KDA50 in my VAX 4000-500. Until I booted VMS the LEDs would perform the cycling pattern. After I booted VMS then the LEDs on the M7164 blinked HEX 4 and HEX 5 alternately, which suggests that the KDA50 is working just fine. However, I then stumbled because the BA440 enclosure is not really designed for the KDA50 and SDI disks. In particular there is nowhere for the bulkhead connected by internal cables to the M7164, nowhere for the Operator Control Panel (OCP) and it is difficult to get power to the drives because there are no 4-pin molex power cables. I thought I would install it all in my MicroVAX 3400 instead. This has a BA213 enclosure, where I think the bulkhead and OCP will fit. But then I hit a snag. The machine only seems to have 5-pin power connectors for DSSI disks, not the 4-pin ones needed by the SDI disks.

        Not really sure what to do next. Any suggestions?

        Comment


          #5
          I realised that the TK70 drive has a 4-pin molex connector, so I can use that for now. I can't find a pinout for the DSSI 5-pin molex connector, but I think it is essentially the same as the 4-pin with an additional P OK signal. I can't find any adapters. I suppose it must still be possible to buy the connectors and I could make up my own adapter perhaps. Any other ideas?

          Comment


            #6
            As for power, I guess wiring an adapter from a 5-pin connector shouldn't be too hard.

            I know that RA70 drives were commonly used without any OCP at all. You can set the unit number with switches on the drive itself. Any other RA disks don't have that, but I've run with RA72 drives without OCP as well. They just ended up as unit #0. Not sure if you might actually reprogram them somewhere else, with an OCP, and then move them afterwards, and they retain the unit number, or if you'll be stuck with #0 for such drives.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by rjarratt View Post
              Until I booted VMS the LEDs would perform the cycling pattern.
              That has been my experience as well with the MSCP controllers - they do the "runway landing lights" sequence after passing self-test until initialized by either a bootstrap or the OS device driver.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Terry Kennedy View Post
                That has been my experience as well with the MSCP controllers - they do the "runway landing lights" sequence after passing self-test until initialized by either a bootstrap or the OS device driver.
                They do it after initializing/OS booting as well, if they are just sitting idle... Not always that common on a running system, though.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I have been having some good luck with at least one of the SDI drives. I noticed that one of them though has boot name of DUA33, as below:

                  >>>sh uqssp
                  UQSSP Disk Controller 0 (772150)
                  -DUA33 (RA70)

                  UQSSP Tape Controller 0 (774500)
                  >>>
                  This is clearly some config actually on the HDD itself. I can't see how to access this config from the console firmware. I have tried all sorts of combinations of SET HOST/DUP/UQSSP etc. I know this works for DSSI disks and using a KFQSA, but I don't know how to do this with a KDA50 and an RA70. It must be possible, but I just can' see how. Anyone?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by rjarratt View Post
                    I have been having some good luck with at least one of the SDI drives. I noticed that one of them though has boot name of DUA33, as below:



                    This is clearly some config actually on the HDD itself. I can't see how to access this config from the console firmware. I have tried all sorts of combinations of SET HOST/DUP/UQSSP etc. I know this works for DSSI disks and using a KFQSA, but I don't know how to do this with a KDA50 and an RA70. It must be possible, but I just can' see how. Anyone?
                    You can't.
                    SDI is not even close to DSSI in this aspect. With SDI, you need to use a front panel to reprogram what unit number it has.
                    Or, if this truly is an RA70, then there are also dip switches on the mainboard of the drive, where you can reprogram the unit number.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by bqt View Post
                      You can't.
                      SDI is not even close to DSSI in this aspect. With SDI, you need to use a front panel to reprogram what unit number it has.
                      Or, if this truly is an RA70, then there are also dip switches on the mainboard of the drive, where you can reprogram the unit number.
                      So how can these disks show up as DUA33 and DUA64? The disks seemed to be configured with unit numbers 0 and 1 respectively on the DIP switches.
                      Last edited by rjarratt; January 1, 2021, 07:54 AM.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by rjarratt View Post
                        So how can these disks show up as DUA33 and DUA64? The disks seemed to be configured with unit numbers 0 and 1 respectively on the DIP switches.
                        The manuals for the RA70 are probably somewhere if you really search around.
                        But as far as I can recall, to change the unit number using the dip-switches, you should set the number on the dip-switches, and then there is a button you need to press to load it into the disk as the unit number.
                        So it's not that the dip-switch is directly connected to the disk current unit.
                        And if you have a disk with a front panel, you can change the unit number through that as well, so obviously, a dip-switch that directly reflects the number can not work.

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