Page 1 of 2

New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:56 am
by Byrd
Hi all,

I was here on the forums a while back, having picked up several SGI O2s in various guises - they weren't my cup of tea (having been put in storage for years they were highly fragile), these were provided to another collector.

I still had the SGI itch, and a friend gave me 2 x Octanes today, ex-academic machines. One was used up until only recently to control a microsope (the newer logo and in great condition) and the other was saved from e-waste (rusty, old logo).

- The clean Octane looks bone stock (and reportedly boots), with the SE graphics board and the second revision motherboard. It has a single TMEZZ TRAM module installed on the SE board. EDIT: single 270Mhz CPU

- The rough Octane has been upgraded with dual CPUs, PCI cage, tape drive and both MXE graphics board + SE graphics board, no TMEZZ TRAM modules. It has the older revision motherboard. EDIT: dual 300Mhz CPUs, can't tell exact part yet (label missing)

As you can guess, I intend to build up one good unit and my first question is - can that TMEZZ TRAM board be installed singularly to the MXE board, or should I put it on the SE graphics board?

Thanks

JB

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 7:36 am
by Geoman
Congratulations for your Octanes and welcome to the pack!

I've got myself an SE+T Octane, and it's a fine machine. All the textured stuff like demos, Mekton etc runs perfectly fine.

For SSI or SSE you will need 2 Mezzanine-Modules. They don't work with only one module.

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:21 pm
by Krokodil
Welcome to the Octane owners club. Sounds like you could have yourself a decent Octane there.

If you do buy any TRAM modules for your MXE make sure they are the correct type for your board. I think in this case you'll need SGI PN 030-1263-002

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:54 pm
by Byrd
Thanks all for the advice and welcome :)

Looks like I'll be adding dual graphics boards, one the stock MXE and the other the SE with TRAM module installed. Should be able to get a good example up and running. I'm assuming the older Octane with (what I assume is) dual R12K 300Mhz CPUs will be a straight swap into the later revision board?

JB

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:26 pm
by Krokodil
Byrd wrote:Thanks all for the advice and welcome :)

Looks like I'll be adding dual graphics boards, one the stock MXE and the other the SE with TRAM module installed. Should be able to get a good example up and running. I'm assuming the older Octane with (what I assume is) dual R12K 300Mhz CPUs will be a straight swap into the later revision board?

JB


Yes, should be a simple swap of the dual CPU onto the other board.

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sun Mar 12, 2017 4:24 pm
by smj
Welcome and congrats. Be careful of the compression connectors on the XIO cards. Do read and follow the precautions scattered throughout the wiki and forums.

Preference to an 030-1467 system board if there's a choice - it's newer, can take faster CPUs and larger RAM modules.

Be careful about putting an XIO module in position D - that'll cause an Octane to run in "fastfan" mode. If you haven't experienced that particular joy...

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 3:59 am
by Byrd
Hi again,

I've spent some time cleaning and restoring one "good" Octane, which currently sits at the later Revision D 030-1467 based unit, MXE + SE dual graphics boards, 1.5GB RAM in total, 18GB HD, tape drive and PCI card cage (with some sort of NIC/PS2 mouse + keyboard card in it).

The Dual 300Mhz CPU board does not work in either Octane - the PSU powers up but with no light bar activity. It leaves me with the stock 270Mhz CPU and it's booting smoothly. I'll no doubt get the itch and upgrade the CPUs soon.

Are the MIPS CPUs prone to flaking out, are there any other tips on troubleshooting the dual 300 CPU? I've cleaned the contacts with electronic contact cleaner spray, the VRMs either side of the heatsink look OK.

JB

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:57 am
by robespierre
That PCI card is called the CadDuo, it allowed two simultaneous users.
The processor module could have a bent connector or socket, as I recall the wider dual-CPU ones were under more mechanical stress.

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:25 pm
by mopar5150
Welcome! The Octane systems are really nice machines so enjoy.

I have a dual 270mhz CPU you can have for the cost of shipping. Where are you located?

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:18 pm
by Byrd
Thanks mopar, I'd be really interested in the dual CPU - I've checked out the dual 300 CPU I have quite a few times but it's very dead. I'm in Australia though.

Next up is installing IRIX 6.5 fresh onto my Octane ... as a Mac collector, I've a slew of SCSI(1) external CD drives with DB25 connectors on the enclosures. Do the SCSI-3 68 pin to DB25 adaptors and cables work in this instance? Otherwise I think I've an UW SCSI cable I could run off the Octane's internal SCSI bus and 68 to 80pin PCB adapter to try running the optical drive that way.

JB

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Tue Apr 04, 2017 7:20 pm
by Raion-Fox
Get a UW->Centronics SCSI adapter and a centronics cable to run any optical drives

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 5:24 pm
by Byrd
Hi Raion-Fox,

Is this the sort of cable you'd recommend, or more an adapter for the internal SCSI bus?

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/6ft-long-8mm ... SwoQ1TlxLO

Edit: or this for DB25 (I've a slew of Apple SCSI external drives)

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/0-5-meter-SC ... SwHnFVrMk7

Thanks

JB

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:46 pm
by Raion-Fox
Either will work assuming you have externals to match.

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat May 13, 2017 4:51 am
by Byrd
After much CD burning and several moments of command line confusion (remember I'm a Mac collector at heart!), IRIX 6.5.30 is now running smoothly on my Octane! I'm busily trying to find more software to try on the machine.

I've installed the Demo applications found on the June 1998 Application CD, and updated to the November 1999 Demos, but unable to find the Octane specific demos run under butterfly - where do I find them?

Thanks

JB

Re: New haul: 2 x Octanes, Q about TMEZZ TRAM module upgrades

Posted: Sat May 13, 2017 2:43 pm
by japes
Ah, I didn't see this before so congrats on the Octane life.

I've found the CADduo card in a few odd places - like single graphics Octanes such as yours and Origin 200 servers that don't have any graphics. I think they were used by SGI resellers to add 100 mbit ethernet ports sometimes, and the PS/2 ports just came along for the ride. Since you have dual graphics now, if you tire of having a single user logged in across two monitors I can help you find the configuration for two users. The recommend against logging in as the same user on both stations, it's a neat feature. The card comes with a CD which I haven't located yet with packages to configure the system for dual-user.

I have a 2-cd set for demos that came part of my 6.5.19 distribution. The discs are 6.5.12 Demo (1 of 2), 6.5.12 Demo (2 of 2). The first disk is O2 Demo CD version 1.3, the second is OCTANE Demo version 1.3 and OCTANE2 Demo version 1.0.