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Openstep on a SparcStation 5/Solaris 2.5.1 - So close yet...
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Smile. Yeah it's pretty cool to see it running atop Solaris. Butt-ugly doesn't even begin to describe how CDE looks. I tended to stick to OpenWindows. It's still not pretty but it's minimal enough to not bother me.

I don't know why Sun dropped OpenStep either. I guess they just figured Java was the way to go. Maybe there was some licencing costs involved or maybe they just wanted to go their own way. I read an article a little while back when it talked about how Sun had almost bought Apple.

I found an article here from an ex-Sun employee that seems to explain what went wrong with OpenStep at Sun.

Something I noticed while looking through the setup instructions was that there was an AnswerBook for Solaris OpenStep, but this package hasn't been included with either of the 1.0 or 1.1 distributions circulating. I'm guessing it was on the CD-ROM (which I've never seen).

I couldn't find the package but I did find a pre-installed copy online so after many failed attempts to create an installable package, here it is in a plain ole zip file. Unpack it, place the SUNWOabos folder in /opt and make sure you've set the path to it as detailed in the Installation Guide.

Might as well paste in the .profile file I'm using to boot OpenStep:
Code:
#
# @(#)local.profile 1.4   93/09/15 SMI
#
stty istrip
PATH=/usr/bin:/usr/openstep/bin/:usr/ucb:/etc:.
MANPATH=$MANPATH:/usr/openstep/man
XINITRC=/usr/openstep/etc/Xinitrc
AB_CARDCATALOG=$AB_CARDCATALOG:\
/opt/SUNWOabos/ab_cardcatalog

export PATH
export MANPATH
export XINITRC
export AB_CARDCATALOG

if [ `tty` = "/dev/console" ] ; then
   if [ "$TERM" = "sun" -o "$TERM" = "AT386" ] ; then

      if [ ${OPENWINHOME:-""} = "" ] ; then
         OPENWINHOME=/usr/openwin
         export OPENWINHOME
      fi
             $OPENWINHOME/bin/openwin -dpi 72
         clear
         exit
   fi
fi
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pitz



Joined: 14 Aug 2006
Posts: 122
Location: Oregon, USA

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was good to see a screen shot of that. I also stuck with OpenWindows during my Sun workstation days, and wasn't using workstations anymore by the time CDE was available (which I think was mostly similar to Motif in appearance and that I didn't really like).

I noticed that the fonts used were more like those used in OpenWindows instead of those in the native m68k OPENSTEP installations.
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bkmoore



Joined: 01 Jan 2009
Posts: 183
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the links. It looks like NeXT didn't license their IDE to SUN and SUN had difficulty coming up with their own. Maybe NeXT was thinking they would be able to sell development tools for OpenSTEP on SUN in the same way they sold Enterprise Objects for WinNT. But I agree with the article, without SUN having a modern OpenSTEP IDE, the project was probably doomed. Then when Java came along, it wasn't a priority for SUN to build an OpenSTEP IDE from scratch.

Brian
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2011 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I went ahead and upgraded the OpenStep install to 1.1 (by installing the JavaPlan package found here) and noticed some changes. The main visual one is that tiles are now flat grey. While they look kinda cheap now, I guess it does make the GUI more consistent.

If you drag a regular Solaris binary to a dock tile, it's name is now displayed in the top left of the tile.

Also, the severe colour flashing I was getting while running MAE with a 8-bit colour depth is gone.
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ebann



Joined: 05 Sep 2010
Posts: 45

PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 4:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

protocol7 wrote:
I went ahead and upgraded the OpenStep install to 1.1 (by installing the JavaPlan package found here) and noticed some changes. The main visual one is that tiles are now flat grey. While they look kinda cheap now, I guess it does make the GUI more consistent.

If you drag a regular Solaris binary to a dock tile, it's name is now displayed in the top left of the tile.

Also, the severe colour flashing I was getting while running MAE with a 8-bit colour depth is gone.


In your opinion... what do you prefer to use:

1) Sparcstation 20 with OPENSTEP 4.2 for Sparc
2) Ultra5 running Solaris with OpenStep 1.1 on Solaris

And a quick question... does OpenStep 1.1 include development package?
_________________
White Box running OPENSTEP 4.2
Dual Pentium III 550MHz | 320MB ECC SDRAM
Matrox Millenium II 8MB
SanDisk 2GB Compact Flash (CF-to-IDE)
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's early days yet, but for me Solaris OpenStep is little more than an alternative (but welcome) window manager for Solaris.

The dev tools were called Workshop OpenStep but I haven't been able to find a copy anywhere.

I have a S24 card coming for my SS5 so I'll put OS4.2 and Solaris OpenStep on that when it arrives and see how both look in proper 24-bit colour. Haven't managed to find a 8MB VSIMM for my SS20 for a good price yet.

The main thing I like about running Solaris OpenStep is that I can use my Ultra 5 which is faster, has more RAM, and doesn't have a pair of noisy SCSI hard disks. It would be great if I could find a way to partition up a 9GB disk to dual-boot OS4.2 and Solaris but I don't know if that's possible.
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, my S24 card arrived, but I can't get it to work. The light on my monitor just flashes green/orange and the display never kicks in.

If I put in the old TurboXGX card and connect the monitor to that, the screen kicks in, but stays black. If I remove the S24 and just have the TurboXGX card in, everything works fine as before.

Any ideas? Is the card faulty or am I missing a step? Not finding anything helpful online so far.
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iDork



Joined: 18 Jan 2006
Posts: 62
Location: Kirkland, WA

PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 7:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

protocol7 wrote:
Well, my S24 card arrived, but I can't get it to work. The light on my monitor just flashes green/orange and the display never kicks in.

If I put in the old TurboXGX card and connect the monitor to that, the screen kicks in, but stays black. If I remove the S24 and just have the TurboXGX card in, everything works fine as before.

Any ideas? Is the card faulty or am I missing a step? Not finding anything helpful online so far.


I didn't have to do anything special when I replaced my SS5 video card - the S24 "just worked" Wink
The only thing I can think of is that you might have it installed in the "wrong" slot. Mine is the top card above the sound input/output connectors.
_________________
NS TurboColor, SparcStation 5, Ultra 10, Octane SSI, HP 9000 C110, AlphaStation 200, Apple IIgs|IIe|IIc, Amiga 500+|600|1200, Commodore 64|128
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

iDork wrote:
I didn't have to do anything special when I replaced my SS5 video card - the S24 "just worked" Wink
The only thing I can think of is that you might have it installed in the "wrong" slot. Mine is the top card above the sound input/output connectors.

The S24 uses the AFX slot and there's only one in a SS5.

The monitor is a VGA one connected via a VGA adapter cable. It works fine with the old card so I'm assuming it should also work with the S24. But maybe this isn't the case?

What's puzzling me is how I cant get any output from the old card if I have the S24 also installed (I've tried setting the sbus slot with the old card first in the sbus-probe-list so in theory it should find that first and initialise the display). If I could do that I could at least see if the S24 is showing up OK.

Upon closer inspection, I'm pretty sure the SS5 isn't posting with both cards installed. The hard disk doesn't start booting Solaris and I can't enter anything on the keyboard (like "power-off" or "reset"). With just the S24 I can enter keyboard commands, but the hard disk still doesn't kick in. Does this sound like a faulty card?
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iDork



Joined: 18 Jan 2006
Posts: 62
Location: Kirkland, WA

PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm no expert in sparc-based hardware, but I'd try connecting via serial terminal before declaring the card officially dead. Maybe the firmware got confused after swapping the cards and redirected the input/output.
_________________
NS TurboColor, SparcStation 5, Ultra 10, Octane SSI, HP 9000 C110, AlphaStation 200, Apple IIgs|IIe|IIc, Amiga 500+|600|1200, Commodore 64|128
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

iDork wrote:
I'm no expert in sparc-based hardware, but I'd try connecting via serial terminal before declaring the card officially dead. Maybe the firmware got confused after swapping the cards and redirected the input/output.

I've tried connecting over serial with my Ultra 5 (using this guide) but it just doesn't seem to work. I can't get any output or input (even when I'm booting the Sparc 5 normally with the old TurboXGX card). Perhaps my cables aren't wired up correctly, but they're the only two I have.

As for the card messing up the outputs, I've ran "set-defaults" a few times so I'm assuming everything is factory-fresh on that score.
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protocol7



Joined: 03 Sep 2008
Posts: 103

PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2011 7:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems the card was faulty, so getting back on track...

I tried to install OpenStep 1.0 on Solaris 2.6 but the terminal app wouldn't open a window (some error about ospd). Installing 1.1 fixed this so I think Solaris 2.5.1 is as high as you can go with OpenStep 1.0.

The easiest way to get 1.0 installed is to have CDE installed first. Then you just have to install a package that adds the OpenStep Desktop to the CDE login screen. If you need to download CDE you can find it here. Once you've unbundled and installed OpenStep 1.0 you need to install the CDE Login package (this isn't installed by the script). Assuming you're still in the solaris_openstep folder, type:

pkgadd -d . SUNWOosUy

Then when you go back to the CDE login window you'll have the option to pick OpenStep Desktop as a session.
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