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Re: Linux for DECstation 5000/240 with PXG graphic board

To: linux-mips@fnet.fr
Subject: Re: Linux for DECstation 5000/240 with PXG graphic board
From: Mitchell Blank Jr <mitch@execpc.com>
Date: Sat, 6 Feb 1999 02:58:13 -0600
Cc: MATTNRI@hilti.com
In-reply-to: <D599D73913CBD111A0DE0000F842E9B9015D62FB@raven.hag.hilti.com>; from Mattner Richard (mr) on Fri, Feb 05, 1999 at 04:11:12PM +0100
References: <D599D73913CBD111A0DE0000F842E9B9015D62FB@raven.hag.hilti.com>
It's really annoying that people have to ask this exact question once
a week on this list.  Is there any chance that the fnet.fr webpage
could be updated to reflect the current state of the project?  There's
still talk of the 1.2 kernel in their FAQ, nor does it mention the unix-ag
site.

Mattner Richard (mr) wrote:
> I got a 'very cheap' DECstation 5000/240 with a PXG graphic board. Is it
> possible to run Linux on this Hardware ? Moreover: Where can I get the
> necessary Software ? Due to the fact, that I actually have no Software for
> the machine, I would prefer a bootable CD-ROM.

The Linux port has not yet progressed to that point yet.  However, the
last few months have seen rapid progress, after a long period of relative
dormancy.  Check out:
        http://decstation.unix-ag.org
for the latest news.  Right now there's no support for SCSI (so you have
to boot off the network and have all your filsystems in NFS), but multiuser
is begining to work for some poeple.  Not far now!

So if you just want to play with Linux on this box (and don't mind the
thrill of development) just hang out here and follow the news as
it happens.  If you just want to use your machine NOW you might want
to look at OpenBSD (www.openbsd.org) or NetBSD (www.netbsd.org) - their
port to the decstation is a lot older and thus more complete.
They also both sell CD-ROM distributions, but I don't think either is
directly bootable on a decstation from CD (I could be wrong, but I
think you either have to write the simpleroot.fs onto a SCSI disk from
another machine or you must network boot the first time)

I don't think either supports /any/ PGX card (what card is it specifically?
A PMAG-D?  PMAG-E?)  I believe these are all seriously undocumented.
You might be able to use them at least in text console.

Anyway, I ran OpenBSD on my DECstations for some time... worked fine.  I'd
rather run Linux on them personally, and am eagerly waiting :-)

-Mitch

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