gabriel at teuton
Jan 28, 2005, 9:26 PM
Post #4 of 10
On Friday 28 January 2005 09:09 pm, Nick Smith wrote:
> thanks gabriel, not new to linux or gentoo, just new to alpha, have seen
> alot of your posts on the gentoo-user list. i know you know what your
> talking about im glad to see your on here too. thanks for the info.
DOH!!! I'm sorry... I didn't even look at the name. Yes, I recognize you
from gentoo-user, and yes I know you know your way around gentoo. Please
excuse my smart-@$$ remarks. I misjudged your post. My compliments to you
on your tactful response.
Well, strip away the smart remarks, and I did give you some real answers.
1. The BIOS-like thing is called "the SRM console" and/or "ARC console."
Yours has both. SRM is for *nix, the ARC is for windoze. While both work
with Linux, SRM is preferred.
2. Compaq/HP does a great job of posting computer data online. You should be
able to get a full users manual with SRM commands and everything. Check hp's
website for "retired systems".
3. Installing gentoo -- I had to use an old liveCD (like gentoo 1.4 or
something). If 2004.3 (or whatever's the latest) doesn't boot for you, try
it. There's also a "jumpstart" disc out there somewhere. It's geared toward
installing RedHat/SuSe... but if you run into trouble it will be handy in
diagnosing your problem. If you get *any* gentoo disc booted, still go ahead
and use a current stage/portage tarball. However, you'll have to work around
a few missing commands that are in the current Handbook. (E.g. mirrorselect
will be gone, you'll have to select mirrors by hand.)
4. On my system (an AlphaStation 2/133) I have two persistent problems, but
I'm able to work around them and live with them OK:
a. When I issue 'halt -p', the box doesn't power down, nor does it
give control to the SRM console correctly. It goes into an infinite
error loop. Relatively harmless. Workaround: cold boots only.
No remote booting. :-( AFAIK this is somewhat rare, and is a
standing bug for FreeBSD as well as Linux.
b. I can't get video to work. That's OK for me, because I'm just using
it as a server / toy machine. Workaround: serial console / ssh.
Note: I didn't try very hard to make it work.
5. Regarding speed -- the benchmarks I posted agree with my experience. These
old boxes don't 'fly.' They just 'work.' My AS 2/133 (133MHz) is like a
Pentium 133MHz. The slowest part is really the hard drives, IMHO. Your
500MHz system may have about 700MB of RAM, which makes for a nice desktop
6. 2.4 kernels are still recommended.
Good luck, and I hope this helps. Alpha systems require a bit of
reading/research/playing to get up to speed.
G a b r i e l M . B e d d i n g f i e l d
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