openvms... another question

From: Patrick Finnegan <>
Date: Wed May 21 09:23:00 2003

On Wed, 21 May 2003, Jay West wrote:

> Ok, I know NOTHING about openVMS. However, this just came up...
> A friend of a friend offered me what he says is a complete set of OpenVMS
> media. No manuals, just the media.
> Several questions:
> From what I understand, isn't there some type of hobbyist free license for
> openvms? If so, not sure why I should grab the media from him if I can just


> download it. Or is there a value to getting the media from him, as to it
> giving me the ability to purchase a license transfer or something... in
> short, is there a special reason getting "real" media is desirable?

There's no official download site, you have to pay for a copy ($30 with
shipping) from Montagar. Or you can find yourself a copy of the media and
use that with the hobbyist license. The biggest reason I'd get a
second-hand copy is to get an earlier version of it. The only version (if
they've finished making copies yet) available from Montagar is OpenVMS 7.3

> Lastly... he said it runs on vax's and pdp's. Not sure if he knows what he's
> talking about, so I'll ask here. Could this run on my 11/44?

Nope. VMS only runs on VAXen, Alphas, and (in the future perhaps)
Itaniums, While earlier versions of VMS might fit in the memory space of
an 11/44, the instructions set is quit a bit more sparse (and quite a bit
different... including 16bit words on the PDP vs 32bit words on the VAX)
on the PDP than the VAX. I've heard you can get some PDP software to run
on the VAX in 'emulation mode' (I think that was in the "Assembly Language
for the PDP-11 book I just got off of eBay), you most certainly can't go
the other way around... at least without a lot of work and a big pile of
crack to help with coming up with ideas :).

You can run a lot of different OS's on the PDP still, from RT-11, to
RSX-11, to even some versions of BSD. Oh yes, and don't forget you can
run standalone things that don't require an OS, too. That's why they put
those wonderful toggle switches on the front of the cPU :). Now I just
wish I had a machine with some...

> Thanks for any enlightenment!
> Jay West

Purdue University ITAP/RCS
Information Technology at Purdue
Research Computing and Storage
Received on Wed May 21 2003 - 09:23:00 BST

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