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Got my PA RISC 712/60 and it's almost MIB!

 
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barcher174



Joined: 07 Dec 2012
Posts: 560

PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 5:59 pm    Post subject: Got my PA RISC 712/60 and it's almost MIB! Reply with quote

Hi All,

I took a gamble and ordered a set of these systems. It turns out they were imaged for some medical software and then placed in the box untouched. Plastics are crisp and uncolored. Album of opening one of them here:

https://www.dropbox.com/sc/8a4c0pppwefsa7r/AAAFATwjcSUr3BExuy7sev5wa


Unfortunately I can't do much with the HP/UX install because even single user mode has been locked down somehow. No installation CD's were included. Luckily I was planning to use this with nextstep anyways, but am I missing out on not seeing HP/UX? Does anyone know which floppy drives are compatible with these? Anything special? No drive was installed, but it came with the bezel in the box. Since I don't need 2 I'll probably end up listing one of them for sale/trade. Let me know if anyone is interested.

--
Brian
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t-rexky



Joined: 09 Jan 2011
Posts: 273
Location: Snowy Canada

PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 4:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

According to http://www.openpa.net/systems/hp-9000_712.html the floppy uses a "special connector". Interestingly, I found some Usenet posts contradicting this and stating that it is a standard PC floppy. On my 715/100XC the floppy interface uses the standard WD37C65C controller, but the computer came with a TEAC FD-235HS SCSI floppy drive.

In either case, I do not believe that NEXTSTEP supports the floppy on HP9000 and I was not able to ever get it to work. Even on HP-UX it seems like floppy support was a bit of an afterthought.
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barcher174



Joined: 07 Dec 2012
Posts: 560

PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 2:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks t-rexxy. It is indeed a standard floppy connector, so I'm going to try my luck with a standard drive. I got nextstep installed without a problem. I booted straight from the CD ( boot scsi.2 with a yamaha CDR drive) and nextstep installed without a problem. These machines do 1280x1024 resolution (I have the upgraded VRAM in these machines), so there is the added benefit of using the full native resolution of my LCD. I upgraded the system board to the 100mhz version and installed an additional 32MB of RAM I had laying around for a total of 64MB. These things run -really- fast in comparison to black hardware. The hardware quality is amazing, and I like that it is a screwless design. Everything including the logic board can be removed by pushing in plastic tabs. Overall fun machines.

--
Brian Archer
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barcher174



Joined: 07 Dec 2012
Posts: 560

PostPosted: Sun Jul 13, 2014 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Update on the floppy drive. I installed a standard PC drive with limited success. First thing to mention is that the power connector only carries 5V. I'm not sure if the 12V is needed or not, so I hooked a splitter to the HDD connector for the floppy. Then in Configure.app you need to enable to floppy driver. The drive is seen by nextstep, but I get the following error:

read: I/O error
block 0 block_count 18

Format Aborted
Floppy drive: unknown disk name

Any disk I insert, the system refuses to see a format. I think this might be a bad drive though, because it was acting flakey on a windows machine as well. I ordered a new drive and will see what happens.

--
Brian
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barcher174



Joined: 07 Dec 2012
Posts: 560

PostPosted: Wed Jul 16, 2014 10:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got a little farther last night. To recognize the disk name I edited the disktab and made an entry for the floppy. Now it recognizes the disk, but errors out on formatting. Now I'm thinking it's no longer a software issue. Even though this is a standard floppy cable I think some of the pins are switched. Specifically the motor control. I'll have a go at tracing to the drive to see if I'm correct.

--
Brian
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barcher174



Joined: 07 Dec 2012
Posts: 560

PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Success!-ish. First, my changes:

Remove Floppy pin 2 (unused motor control that the drive doesn't seem to like )
Bridge pins 34 and 33 ( Set disk as always ready )

Then add the following disk tab:
Floppy Drive|Floppy:\
:ty=removable_rw_floppy:nc#80:nt#2:ns#18:ss#1024:rm#300:\
:fp#96:bp#0:ng#0:gs#0:ga#0:ao#0:\
Surpriseds=mach_kernel:z0#-1:z1#32:ro=a:\
:pa#0:sa#2784:ba#8192:fa#1024:ca#16:da#2048:ra#0Surpriseda=space:\
:ia:ta=4.3BSD:aa:

So I got a floppy to mount and was able to write files. That's the good news. The bad news is a bit strange. First the disk is unreadable on my cube. That's strange. What's even stranger is that I modified an additional floppy in the same way and it can't read the disk on the HP either. BUT, it can read it's own disks. So in other words the disk format is depended on the drive it's been loaded from.

--
Brian
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