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Sun SPARCStation 20.

 
 
retrocomtoday@aol.com
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      04-23-2008, 10:25 PM
Hi all,

Excuse me for sounding dumb, but I've just picked up the above machine
with three external SCSI drives, an optical mouse and keyboard, and a
21" massive monitor. I've no idea what spec this machine is, what it
does or what it is useful for, so any advice, help or pointers are
welcome.

Many thanks,

Shaun Bebbington.
 
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John Burns
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      04-23-2008, 10:36 PM
> Excuse me for sounding dumb, but I've just picked up the above machine
> with three external SCSI drives, an optical mouse and keyboard, and a
> 21" massive monitor. I've no idea what spec this machine is, what it
> does or what it is useful for, so any advice, help or pointers are
> welcome.


Nice bit of kit in it's day :-)

It can take two (four with the right cards) cpus. If you're lucky it has
fast Ross cpus, but few did. What you need to do is get the first 7
digits of the CPU part numbers and google them (501-xxxx or whatever),
it'll be written on the connectors probably.

You can offload web or other network services to an SS20. It's probably
a bit slow for a desktop box these days.

I've sold 100s of them and have yet to see anything better put together.

--
Who needs a life when you've got Unix? :-)
Email: (E-Mail Removed), John G.Burns B.Eng, Bonny Scotland
Web : http://www.unixnerd.demon.co.uk - The Ultimate BMW Homepage!
Need Sun or HP Unix kit? http://www.unixnerd.demon.co.uk/unix.html
www.Strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible price
 
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Doug McIntyre
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      04-23-2008, 10:49 PM
(E-Mail Removed) writes:
>Excuse me for sounding dumb, but I've just picked up the above machine
>with three external SCSI drives, an optical mouse and keyboard, and a
>21" massive monitor. I've no idea what spec this machine is, what it
>does or what it is useful for, so any advice, help or pointers are
>welcome.


This was quite the workstation for the early 1990's.

The CPUs ranged from 50MHz up to 170MHz, you could have up to 4 in
some configurations (only 2 MBUS slots though).

You should be able to run Solaris 8 on it. Mostly you can run SunOS v4.1.x
or Solaris 2.3 through 2.8. It'll run NetBSD or some versions of linux too.

Its a SPARC CPU. You should be able to find more info in the Sun
Hardware Service Manual

http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/801-6189-12

As well as many sites around the Net, as it was quite a popular
machine for its time.



 
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retrocomtoday@aol.com
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      04-23-2008, 10:56 PM
> You can offload web or other network services to an SS20. It's probably
> a bit slow for a desktop box these days.

Oh, I'm not worried about the speed. The other computer that I picked
up today was a 1Mhz, 32K Commodore 8096-SK (basically an 80-columns
PET), with dual 5.25" floppy disk drive and a printer. Not got much
use for the printer to be honest, but it was in with the bundle. I
also own a few other 8-bits, just for fun ;-)

Regards,

Shaun.
 
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John Burns
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      04-24-2008, 09:04 PM
> Oh, I'm not worried about the speed. The other computer that I picked
> up today was a 1Mhz, 32K Commodore 8096-SK (basically an 80-columns
> PET), with dual 5.25" floppy disk drive and a printer. Not got much
> use for the printer to be honest, but it was in with the bundle. I
> also own a few other 8-bits, just for fun ;-)


I had one of those for a few years :-)

Sold it on ebay when I moved house and donated the proceeds to a cat
charity (well it was a PET) :-)

You should visit www.1000bit.com, an italian site with zillions of old
computer brochures. I donated some HP brochures to them.

--
Who needs a life when you've got Unix? :-)
Email: (E-Mail Removed), John G.Burns B.Eng, Bonny Scotland
Web : http://www.unixnerd.demon.co.uk - The Ultimate BMW Homepage!
Need Sun or HP Unix kit? http://www.unixnerd.demon.co.uk/unix.html
www.Strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible price
 
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Dave
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      04-26-2008, 10:33 PM
Doug McIntyre wrote:
> (E-Mail Removed) writes:
>> Excuse me for sounding dumb, but I've just picked up the above machine
>> with three external SCSI drives, an optical mouse and keyboard, and a
>> 21" massive monitor. I've no idea what spec this machine is, what it
>> does or what it is useful for, so any advice, help or pointers are
>> welcome.

>
> This was quite the workstation for the early 1990's.


Yes, very nice for its day.

The only real problem I have found with SS20's is the heat - put a
couple of modern 10,000 rpm disks in it and they will get very very hot.

> The CPUs ranged from 50MHz up to 170MHz, you could have up to 4 in
> some configurations (only 2 MBUS slots though).


I thought Ross did a 180 and possibly a 200 MHz CPU.
>
> You should be able to run Solaris 8 on it. Mostly you can run SunOS v4.1.x
> or Solaris 2.3 through 2.8. It'll run NetBSD or some versions of linux too.


Why not Solaris 9? It was only 10 which needs a 64-bit machine.

> Its a SPARC CPU. You should be able to find more info in the Sun
> Hardware Service Manual
>
> http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/801-6189-12
>
> As well as many sites around the Net, as it was quite a popular
> machine for its time.






 
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John Burns
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      04-27-2008, 11:12 AM
> I thought Ross did a 180 and possibly a 200 MHz CPU.

There was certainly a 200, I've a feeling there may even been Ross's
above that.

> Why not Solaris 9? It was only 10 which needs a 64-bit machine.


Yes, 9 works just fine. Although I've heard it said that 8 runs faster.

If anyone in the UK wants to play with dual cpu Suns I have an SS10 that
I'd love to give away rather than bin!

--
Who needs a life when you've got Unix? :-)
Email: (E-Mail Removed), John G.Burns B.Eng, Bonny Scotland
Web : http://www.unixnerd.demon.co.uk - The Ultimate BMW Homepage!
Need Sun or HP Unix kit? http://www.unixnerd.demon.co.uk/unix.html
www.Strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible price
 
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Huge
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      04-28-2008, 07:58 AM
On 2008-04-27, John Burns <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> I thought Ross did a 180 and possibly a 200 MHz CPU.

>
> There was certainly a 200, I've a feeling there may even been Ross's
> above that.
>
>> Why not Solaris 9? It was only 10 which needs a 64-bit machine.

>
> Yes, 9 works just fine. Although I've heard it said that 8 runs faster.
>
> If anyone in the UK wants to play with dual cpu Suns I have an SS10 that
> I'd love to give away rather than bin!


I've given away all my antique Sun stuff on Freecycle.


--
"Be thankful that you have a life, and forsake your vain
and presumptuous desire for a second one."
[email me at huge {at} huge (dot) org <dot> uk]
 
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Volker Borchert
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      04-28-2008, 08:06 AM
John Burns wrote:

|>> I thought Ross did a 180 and possibly a 200 MHz CPU.

|> There was certainly a 200, I've a feeling there may even been Ross's
|> above that.

AFAIR 200 was max, and the 165/180/200 ran the cache at half CPU clock
while the <=150 ran it at full CPU clock; the faster cache may outweigh
the faster CPU depending on your application.

See http://mbus.sunhelp.org/

--

"I'm a doctor, not a mechanic." Dr Leonard McCoy <(E-Mail Removed)>
"I'm a mechanic, not a doctor." Volker Borchert <(E-Mail Removed)>
 
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Dave
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      05-01-2008, 05:08 AM
John Burns wrote:

> If anyone in the UK wants to play with dual cpu Suns I have an SS10 that
> I'd love to give away rather than bin!
>



I used to work with a guy from Canada, who told me they had an excellent
scheme for things like this. Basically on one day per year, you put
outside your house any items you did not want, but thought others might
- like the SS10. The stuff stayed there for 3 days, during which time
anyone would look around, find anything of interest and take it. After
the 3 days, the local council collected the rest and it was recycled or
taken to the landfill

I recall once when I was at work we had some stuff (forget what, but at
least one had a CRT) which we no longer needed in the lab. I stuck an
email around the department saying anyone could collect it if they
wanted it. Someone emailed me to say I should not do this, but instead
cut off the power cords, and smash the necks of the CRTs to make them
inopperable. Unfortunately, there seems to be quite a few like that, who
view the risks of being sued if someone manages to injure them self.

 
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