[TUHS] lost ports

Lawrence Stewart stewart at serissa.com
Fri Jan 6 09:40:21 AEST 2017

I left Digital in 1994, so I don’t know much about the later evolution of the Alphaservers, but 1998 would have been about right for en EV-56 (EV-5 shrink) or EV-6.  There’s a Wikipedia article about all the different systems but most of the dates are missing.

The white label parts are all PAL22V10-15s.  The 8 square chips are cache SRAMS, and most the the SOIC jellybeans are bus transceivers to connect the CPU to RAM and I/O.  The PC derived stuff is in the back corner.  There are 16 DIMM slots to make two ranks of 54 bit RAM out of 8-bit DIMMs.  We usually ran with a SCSI card, an ethernet, and an 8514 graphics card plugged into the riser.


> On 2017, Jan 5, at 5:55 PM, ron minnich <rminnich at gmail.com> wrote:
> What version of this would I have bought ca. 1998? I had 16 of some kind of Alpha nodes in AMD sockets, interconnected with SCI for encoding videos. I ended up writing and releasing what I think were the first open source drivers for SCI -- it took a long time to get Dolphin to let me release them.
> The DIPs with white labels -- are those PALs or somethin? Or are the labels just to cover up part names :-)
> On Thu, Jan 5, 2017 at 2:39 PM Lawrence Stewart <lstewart2 at gmail.com <mailto:lstewart2 at gmail.com>> wrote:
> Alphas in PC boxes!  I dug around in the basement and found my Beta (photo attached).
> This was from 1992 or 1993 I think.  This is an EV-3 or EV-4 in a low profile PC box using pc peripherals.  Dave Conroy designed the hardware, I did the console ROMS (BIOS equivalent) and X server, and Tom Levergood ported OSF-1.  A joint project of DEC Semiconductor Engineering and the DEC Cambridge Research Lab. I think about 20 were built, and the idea kickstarted a line of low end Alphaservers.
> This was a typical Conroy minimalist design, crunching the off-chip caches, PC junk I/O, ISA bus, and 64 MBytes of RAM into this little space.  I think one gate array would replace about half of the chips.
> -L
> <IMG_0939.JPG><IMG_0939.JPG>

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