Sun rises in the east.

From: Ethan Dicks <>
Date: Mon May 12 14:14:00 2003

--- John Allain <> wrote:
> The SparcII has a Mfg date of 1992, making it on topic.

I had one of those for a while - sold it to a former employer about
4 years ago. I'm on a SPARCstation-5/110 at the moment ($35 at last
year's Dayton Hamvention). I'm contemplating moving up to an Ultra
if I can find one for cheap. I'd even take an old Ultra-5 if it were
cheap enough.
> Sure is a fussy sucker
> takes 30 seconds before displaying
> any video at all.

That's probably video-card dependent. If you have a "dual-wide"
CG6 or a CG3, you might want to consider getting something newer.
You don't need a TGX+, but I find console operations with the older
cards to be a frustrating experience (no hardware acceleration of
the pixels in console mode).

> takes 5 minutes testing memory before responding
> to the keyboard.

That can be fixed with an NVRAM setting (test-megs?)

> will boot the disk but won't even allow log-in attempts
> until it finds a netlog server.

Hmm... that should also be settable.

> Any info on password cracking?

NVRAM password or OS password? The easiest way to crack passwords
is to boot a distribution CD; it's easy to get to a root prompt
and either edit the shadow file (OS password) or use the eeprom
command (NVRAM password). If the boot sequence is locked so you
can't boot a CD-ROM, then rejumpering the target disk to some other
unit number and installing a friendly OS disk at the expected
SCSI target number is probably the easiest way in.

It's an easier process in any case if you have another machine
of any similar variety handy (in your case, anything from a SPARC1
up through a SPARC2 (1+, ELC, etc.) will be a perfect match; depending
on how it was installed, a SPARC5 or SPARC10 disk might or might not
boot for you). I had to resort to a remote net boot to clear the
NVRAM config on my SPARCclassic - it *wanted* to boot off the network,
so I made my SPARC2 a network boot server and brought up the classic
far enough to use the eeprom command to reset the NVRAM password and
default boot device.

Instructions for a variety of these techniques are available in
several places - I would point people at to start
with. Also look for the Sun Hardware FAQ and Solaris Managers FAQ.
There's also a "Suns-at-Home" mailing list (low volume) that I
subscribe to.

> Should I now switch to netBSD or can I get it to use SunOS
> or Solaris (it has SunOS v5.5.1 on it).

Personally, since I have adminstrated Solaris for $$$, I prefer to
run Solaris at home (I used to make a living off of flavors of 4BSD,
but that was a long time ago). If you are used to BSD, then there's
nothing inherently wrong with it, but if you want to hone commercially
desired skills, I see posting locally for Solaris folks just about
every week.

Your box happens to be of the "sun4c" architecture, BTW. That limits
you to Solaris 7 or lower. You need a "sun4m" or "better" to run
Solaris 8 (SPARCclassic, SPARC-LX, SPARC-5, SPARC-10, SPARC-20, etc.)
The current version is Solaris 9, and even sun4m machines won't be
supported by Solaris 10 (or is it 'X' ;-)

More details here ->

Solaris 2.5.1 (what you have) is fine for a SPARC-2. If you needed
to, you might get access to a little more stuff if you were running
Solaris 2.6. Unless you had a pressing need (like certain pre-compiled
binaries), I wouldn't necessarily recommend Solaris 7, especially if
you don't have 64MB (or more, but that requires a daughter card).

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Received on Mon May 12 2003 - 14:14:00 BST

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