[CentOS-devel] CentOS on SPARC

Sat Jul 30 15:38:54 UTC 2005
Lamar Owen <lowen at pari.edu>

On Saturday 30 July 2005 06:37, Johnny Hughes wrote:
> On Fri, 2005-07-29 at 21:15 -0400, Adam Breaux wrote:
> > Is this in the works, planned, or never going to happen?

> It depends on access to reliable hardware long term.

> I am working on obtaining some sparc machines.  What the technical
> issues will be if and when I get the machines, we will have to see then.

Do you need physical access, or is remote serial a possibility?

See http://www.lamarowen.net/pgallery/album?album_id=2236 for a look at what I 
have here at PARI.  I'm running our production mailserver on Aurora 1.92 
right now, and a have a small buildfarm (of admittedly lower grade boxes; 
Ultra 30's at 250MHz aren't terribly fast).

I personally have a pair of Ultra 10's (both 360MHz, one has 512MB RAM the 
other has either 256MB or 384MB, don't remember).  The one that has 512MB is 
using the quad-sided DIMM's, meaning only two of the four slots are used, and 
meaning you can add another 256MB (or another pair of the quad-sided DIMM's, 
if you have them) to bring it above 512MB.  The Ultra 10 can take up to a 
120GB IDE drive natively, and up through 300GB with an add-on ATA133 card.  
Also have a pair of Ultra 1's, and I think two Ultra 5 chassis (good spare 
motherboards for the U10's, since the 5 and the 10 use the same 
motherboards).  None of the 10's or 5's have hard drives in them;  they use 
standard IDE drives, both hard drives and CD-ROM drives.  One of the U1's is 
diskless, and the other has a pair of drives, not sure of capacity.  I also 
have some spare CPU modules of various speeds, I think 333MHz and 270MHz are 
my spares.  With the U10's are either one or a pair of Elite3D framebuffers; 
need a 13W3 adapter to make a stock SVGA monitor work with them.  Yes, a U10 
can have dual framebuffers (the UPA Elite3D or Creator series UPA, and the 
PCI ATI Rage), and it should work for the most part.

Oh, a 'quad-sided' DIMM, for those who have never seen them, is a two-sided 
DIMM card where each side has two layers of half-thickness chips; they look 
pretty odd.  I paid over $200 for the pair to get 512MB on the first Ultra 5 
I had;  I was given the U5, but it didn't have any RAM (or drives at all) 
with it, and I built it up and installed Aurora 0.32 on it a few years back.

Those machines are available for CentOS use if you want to pay shipping.  The 
Ultra 10 has an ATI framebuffer with a standard 15 pin SVGA output, so you 
don't need a special monitor.  You do need a Sun keyboard, but I have a few 
of those too.  If you have hardware you want to trade for them, or want to 
count them as a donation, or whatnot, we can work something out.

Having my mailserver running CentOS would be very nice;  using the donated 
SPARC hardware in this way is nice, too.
Lamar Owen
Director of Information Technology
Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute
1 PARI Drive
Rosman, NC  28772