New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

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Crusoe
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New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby Crusoe » Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:38 pm

As I hobby I like to restore, upgrade and use vintage hardware for some of their original intended purposes. Past projects were Mac Color Classic (mystic mods), G4 Cubs to dual proc. I remove everything I can, wash the case, clean the boards, etc.

I have 2 pristine Indy's, both with cameras + one serial to serial cable. Both are 4600 133Mhz with 8 bit card. My 13W to VGA adapter is in transit but I did connect via the serial terminal to one which has a dismal 64MB RAM (The other at home looked to have had some non matching and hopefully larger memory). If I run diagnostics, top line says it running 6.5. What I'd like to do with one is upgrade to a R 5000 SC, 24 bit card, and max RAM and get some 3D software going on there.

After figuring out the login, I got, last login Oct 2003, you have new mail! LOL

Some questions:

Where to source parts?
I found Mashek and a few other stores that look to be current. Any (cheap) preferences? Any sources that do trade-in swap/credits?
I would be fine with a R5000 150 Mhz SC but 180 would rock
24 bit gfx card (since I won't need the
Maybe swap power supply with a Sony. (How much more quiet?)
Atleast 128 MB RAM

Network
I keep my old powerbook running 10.4 (Appletalk) which was nice for other projects.
What's the best OS X to SGI Network/Internet Sharing setup?

Display (SoG)
Can a Indy be used with SGI 1600W flat panel natively with or without mulitlink? I know it can't push the full resolution.
In the interim, I ordered a 13W to VGA. Is a SoG capable display my only choice here? Would VGA to one of my TVs work?
Is there any notion of native VNC in IRIX 6.5 assuming I can get it on my network via the console.

Software - I don't know what is installed besides it seems it has 6.5 running.
How does IRIX software licensing work? Can I get a legal copy of the CDs or does/can it have built in restores?
3D tools - I read you can compile blender which would be cool, is there a source for legal copies of Maya 1.5 or some other modeling tool?

Once I get once with the best specs/parts put back together. How much could an Indy R4600, 133Mhz, 8 bit video, with 2 scsi drives sell for (low,high range)?
This will help with my low budget I apply.

Thanks!

TL;DR - Got two Indy's I'm exited about getting restored and upgraded

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Krokodil
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby Krokodil » Tue Nov 22, 2016 3:10 pm

Crusoe wrote:Where to source parts?
I found Mashek and a few other stores that look to be current. Any (cheap) preferences? Any sources that do trade-in swap/credits?
I would be fine with a R5000 150 Mhz SC but 180 would rock
24 bit gfx card (since I won't need the
Maybe swap power supply with a Sony. (How much more quiet?)
Atleast 128 MB RAM


Ebay is one place. Although it can be expensive. There is also Ian's SGI depot and I'm sure there others. People here can also help you.

Network
I keep my old powerbook running 10.4 (Appletalk) which was nice for other projects.
What's the best OS X to SGI Network/Internet Sharing setup?


Don't know. I don't put my SGI's on the internet, due to the abandonment of IRIX and the wild west situation that is the modern internet. Do so at your own risk.

Display (SoG)
Can a Indy be used with SGI 1600W flat panel natively with or without mulitlink? I know it can't push the full resolution.
In the interim, I ordered a 13W to VGA. Is a SoG capable display my only choice here? Would VGA to one of my TVs work?
Is there any notion of native VNC in IRIX 6.5 assuming I can get it on my network via the console.


Yes, I'm fairly certainly you'll need a SOG capable monitor for anything involving 13w3. I'm not aware of any VNC for IRIX.

Software - I don't know what is installed besides it seems it has 6.5 running.
How does IRIX software licensing work? Can I get a legal copy of the CDs or does/can it have built in restores?
3D tools - I read you can compile blender which would be cool, is there a source for legal copies of Maya 1.5 or some other modeling tool?


Look for the software manager. Although not all IRIX applications actually use it. Software licensing is usually done through FlexLM/Nodelock, however there are cases where applications have their own cd key systems and some use protection dongles.

In some people's eyes even buying the software second hand is "illegal", due to the licensing stuff and you pretty much have no chance of finding it new either, since most companies are not interested in selling old software for IRIX. So I think you can come to the logical conclusion about how to proceed from there.
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josehill
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby josehill » Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:02 pm

Crusoe wrote:Both are 4600 133Mhz with 8 bit card. My 13W to VGA adapter is in transit but I did connect via the serial terminal to one which has a dismal 64MB RAM (The other at home looked to have had some non matching and hopefully larger memory). If I run diagnostics, top line says it running 6.5. What I'd like to do with one is upgrade to a R 5000 SC, 24 bit card, and max RAM and get some 3D software going on there.

If, by some chance, you don't upgrade the hardware, IRIX 6.2 (or 5.3) would run much more comfortably in 64 MB of RAM. IRIX 6.5 would be more comfortable with a minimum of 128 MB, but 192 MB or 256 MB would be noticeably better.

What's the best OS X to SGI Network/Internet Sharing setup?

Any should OS X work, though setting up DHCP on IRIX takes a few extra steps, such as setting a default route (which probably would be your Mac's LAN address, or possibly your router). Take a look at viewtopic.php?p=7349828#p7349828 for some hints on the IRIX side of the equation or just search the net for "IRIX DHCP". Modern DHCP clients take care of all that stuff automatically, but the IRIX DHCP client doesn't. For that reason, most people here prefer static IP configurations for their IRIX boxes instead of DHCP.

Can a Indy be used with SGI 1600W flat panel natively with or without mulitlink?

It would need the multilink. The 1600SW came out well after the Indy, and it uses a non-standard hardware interface.

Is there any notion of native VNC in IRIX 6.5 assuming I can get it on my network via the console.

Yes. There are several VNC implementations out there, but nothing close to current from a security perspective, so don't try to VNC over the Internet. Take a look at the "current" and "beta" directories of a Nekoware mirror or at http://freeware.nekochan.net/index-by-alpha.html . I had good success with TightVNC from the latter site, though I haven't used it in a while. Perfectly acceptable for a home network.

I don't know what is installed besides it seems it has 6.5 running.

If you only have terminal access (not gui access), take a look at the "versions" and "inst" commands. Try typing "man versions" or "man inst" for a full list of options. If you have gui access, open the Software Manager (just a gui frontend to inst) from the Toolchest. Any software that used the standard IRIX installation tools would be visible using those tools, unless someone explicitly deleted their records, which is possible, but rare. Also, some programs didn't use the IRIX installation tools, so inst/swmgr/versions wouldn't show them. They can be harder to find, but they might be in their own subdirectories of the the /usr directory (for example /usr/WHATEVER), in /usr/local/, or somewhere in /opt.

TL;DR - Got two Indy's I'm exited about getting restored and upgraded

Cool! IRIX is a very fun system, provided you use tools that are in keeping with the machines' ages and capabilities.

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Dodoid
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby Dodoid » Tue Nov 22, 2016 8:04 pm

Agree with everyone else here, just going to say that VNC works great and isn't too hard to set up.
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby japes » Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:09 am

Congrats...I'm pretty sure that means you emailed the guy before me. If that's the case and you're available Saturday you should come out to Seattle Retro-Computing Society. I was planning on bringing some SGI gear (and maybe some Macs). See http://www.seattleretrocomputing.com. Bring one or both of your Indys!

Seems most of your questions are covered already.

I think the Indy graphics outputs sync signals, so depending on your 13w3 adapter your monitor might not have to sync on green, but must tolerate the SoG signaling. For a while my monitors semed fine with this, but a bunch of monitors I have now aren't very tolerant of SoG if the have H/V sync, but will SoG if the H/V sync isn't present. You may need to experiment here.

I don't remember how loud the Nidec PSU is, all of mine have simply died - so mine are quiet. A new fan might help, but most of the noise in an Indy is the 30 year old hard drives. I've started using 2.5" 10k 72gb SCA scsi drives. The prom does throw a couple errors about invalid sense codes or something like that, but they seem fine. You definitely need to keep the lid on with one of these drives, or provide some airflow if you're running with the case open. I'd probably only run one hard drive.

If you have the floptical drive, it's probably failed.
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby japes » Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:19 am

Crusoe wrote:Network
I keep my old powerbook running 10.4 (Appletalk) which was nice for other projects.
What's the best OS X to SGI Network/Internet Sharing setup?


What are you looking to do here? File sharing? IRIX is Unix so one of the easiest things you can do is export a fs with nfs and mount that export on any OS X machine. OS X nfs exports has changed a few times, if you have OS X server there may be a gui, for client versions get your google on. I just use a NAS (or Linux/unix/bsd system) to provide nfs shares that are also smb/cifs for my modern systems.

Internet? Well if you hide it behind a router/firewall you can ftp from the shell just fine. There is no browser that you'll be happy running on the Indy. With a bottle of cold medicine and a R5000 180 SC cpu you might be able to tolerate the ancient Mozilla or Netscape, but good luck finding a website that renders properly in those browsers. Telnet and SSH work fine. sshd isn't in place by default, and I still wouldn't open it to the world. If you want access from the outside world use a jump box.

When you have the GUI it's pretty easy to configure the network settings. If not there are a couple guides out there if your google Fu is reasonable.
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby uunix » Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:47 am

This won't work perfectly, but I will test the theory when I get home from my Macs..

On the mac in a terminal session (SGI must be on network (same subnet), but you can run the IRIX commands from a serial session):
# xhost + [ip address of the SGI]
# telnet [ip address of the SGI]
LOG IN
# csh or # tcsh (if not already)
# setenv DISPLAY [IP Address of mac]:0.0
# toolchest &

And you possibly should get a tool chest appear top left of your mac screen. You can see what's installed, look at nfs, all sorts.

I say it's possible, because something in the back of my mind says I tried it many years back and it failed.
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ajw99uk
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby ajw99uk » Wed Nov 23, 2016 3:25 pm

Crusoe wrote:Would VGA to one of my TVs work?

Works here with an Indigo2 Extreme, VGA adapter and an LG TV. 1024X768.
Fuel; Indigo2; RiscPC Kinetic/448MB/RISCOS4.39; RPi B RISCOS5.23; Rpi2 Raspbian-stretch; A5000/33MHz/FPA11/8MB/RISCOS3.11; A540/25MHz/FPA10/16MB/RISCOS3.11 or RISCiX1.21

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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby josehill » Wed Nov 23, 2016 5:52 pm

uunix wrote:On the mac in a terminal session (SGI must be on network (same subnet), but you can run the IRIX commands from a serial session):
# xhost + [ip address of the SGI]

You'll need to make sure that you have X11 installed on the Mac first, of course. ;)

Crusoe
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Re: New to SGI with 2 pristine Indys

Unread postby Crusoe » Thu Nov 24, 2016 11:40 pm

Wow, thanks for all the tips!
Updates:
I'm still working through a serial connection and the console but I was able to remote into the file system and run shell commands. Got ifconfig and set my Powerbooks on same. I was able to Ping both ways!
One is a 4600 133 and the other is a 4400 175
I ordered 2 different 13w to vga adapters and the 2nd one states it you don't need SoG. Impatiently waiting and hopefully one of my TVs will handle it.

@japes I don't know why I like vintage computers but I do. I've been thinking about coming to the meetings. I was running Netscape on my 33Mhz Mac Color Classic and able to download all the old 68k stuff so how bad can it be ; )

@josehill Looking fwd to DHCP and VNC.


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