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Resurrecting the VAXen (Part 1)


Subtitle:  An exercise in frustration. Years ago, I bought several VAX workstations with the intention to use them to learn VMS.  For the last few years, I’ve been too busy to fool with them for any length time, but now I have some time to try again.  As with any old hardware, it’s can be […]

RAID 6 and LVM


Years ago, I built a big file server to hold all my important stuff. In modern terms, it doesn’t have that much storage: just shy of 4 TB. An external hard drive would be much cheaper, but having a RAID6 array gives me more peace of mind about my data. Up to 2 drives can […]

Serial Consoles in RHEL6


I’m starting to get my server room set up again, so I can start experimenting with VAXes and VMS and things of that nature. Several years ago, I build a terminal server. It’s a little Mini-ITX machines with a JetWay JNC92-230-LF motherboard with proprietary daughter board, the AD4COMC1, that adds four serial ports for a […]

RHEL/Centos 7.0 and CCISS driver


I bought several HP DL360 G4p from Server Monkey to use as test machines for OpenStack. Unfortunately, the HP SmartArray 6i SCSI RAID controller that is installed in these machines is not supported by the RHEL 7.0. The cciss driver required for the controller is still part of the main kernel, it’s just not shipped […]

Trouble in Mind


On of my favorite old songs is Trouble in Mind. The oldest recording, though the song likely has older folk roots, is by Fields Ward. The lyrics, gleaned from the Mudcat forum are as follows: AIN’T THAT TROUBLE IN MIND Fields Ward & the Grayson County Railsplitters Trouble, oh trouble, it’s trouble all the time […]

Creating floppy images


Recently, I’ve needed to create DOS floppy images to use with VMWare. Floppy images end up being more convenient than trying to set up LANMAN or other networking in DOS. I used to use dd(1), but it’s come to my attention that the mkfs.vfat(8) now has a -C option, that does some of that hard […]

1949 Hudson Super Six


I let my better judgement lapse and bought a classic car, a 1949 Hudson Super 6. It came last week, and so now begins the long process of figuring out this ancient behemoth. I was away when the auto shippers arrived, and I authorized a dead drop. In retrospect, this was rather foolish, because they […]

OpenVMS Firmware Variables


After waiting hours for OpenVMS to install on my DEC3000, I was presented with the following error message when I attempted to boot the fresh install: %APB-F-BADSYSROOT, System root [SYSA.] does not exist, check bootflags Very disheartening, however it’s a fairly easy fix.  My DEC 3000 was previously used for OSF/1 (i.e. UNIX), so a […]

LA600 and VMS


I recently won a state surplus auction that included a large amount of old DEC hardware.  Most of it was junk, e.g. old VT420s with screen burn, but there was a diamond in there:  a DEC LA600 MultiPrinter. This thing is a monster:  a wide carriage dot matrix printer designed for heavy use.  Amazingly enough, […]

RTL8168B in Ubuntu Server LTS 8.04


So, This has probably been hashed out several times on the Internet, but I figure one more time wont hurt. I decided to install Ubuntu Server 8.04 LTS on one of my Linux machines. After installation, the ethernet card refused to work. It was detected by the kernel, there was a light on the switch, […]