Opening a VAX2000

From: Ethan Dicks <>
Date: Thu Mar 18 19:08:29 2004

On Thu, Mar 18, 2004 at 05:43:43PM -0700, John Willis wrote:
> On a side note, my MicroVAX 2000 does not have the TK50Z attached
> to the bottom of it... I would guess you have to remove that part
> in order to get the cover off of the actual system. But, I wouldn't
> know for sure since I never had the TK50Z.

The cable for the TK50Z comes off the mainboard of the uVAX2000...
the lower skirt is present on systems with a DHT32 8-port serial
adapter, or systems with an external RD54 (should be a DD50P
connector for that). AFAIK, yes, you have to remove the extender
before you can get to the screws to slide the main cover off.

> I'd be very interested to
> hear more about this system if it is working... Mine will boot VMS
> but the ethernet doesn't work.

Do you have the ethernet board installed internally? Every uVAX2000
has the 10Base2 BNC installed, but not every machine has the internal
board with the LANCE chip (7990) plugged onto its daughter card pins.

My first uVAX2000 did not have ethernet installed. It was cheaper to
buy a VS2000 and mix the parts (disk, memory, Ethernet) than it was
to try to _buy_ the Ethernet board as a spare. The VS2000 case I got
had an AUI connector on the back that the uVAX2000 did not.

For the unaware, the difference between a VAXstation 2000 and a
MicroVAX 2000 is the plastic badge on the front, sometimes an
add-on framebuffer in the VS2000, and the position of a jumper
that identifies the CPU type as one vs the other (KA610 vs KA620?)
to the ROMs. The firmware is the same, as is the default behavior
when loading VMS (the VS2000 was envisioned as a personal workstation,
the uVAX2000 more of a MicroVAX-II with limited peripherals).

Fun machines... not quite as much fun as a Qbus box, but if what you
want to do fits within the limitations of the few peripherals available,
it's just as good as a BA23 MicroVAX setup. They do have an NCR 5380
chip that supposedly can be used for SCSI disk rather than just the
TK50Z, but the patches to the firmware that are floating around don't
match the revision in any of my boxes, and I've never spent enough time
to sort things out. It's not fast, but a 1GB 3.5" disk is going to be
a lot more reliable than an RD54 (and a lot easier to find).


Ethan Dicks, A-130-S      Current South Pole Weather at 19-Mar-2004 13:48 Z
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Received on Thu Mar 18 2004 - 19:08:29 GMT

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