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b1f30 03-04-2008 04:25 PM

Aix 5.3 Tl5 + Rs/6000
 
For future reference: What I'm attempting to do in this post is install AIX 5.3 TL5 on an old IBM 7026-H70 RS/6000 server. I will continue to update this thread as things progress, because sharing knowledge, even on trivial or historical subjects can hold some value - especially for newer admins like myself. This server in particular has some very outdated device microcode causing it to not boot from it's CD-ROM drive.

As always, Internet guides posted on forums come with NO GUARANTEE - so if you break you machine, it's not my fault! Please pay careful attention to details - especially what you read in documentation provided by IBM, etc, as it will save you countless of thousands of hours of pain and suffering.

Friday, March 07 2008 More success! The microcode updates licked most, if not all my problems getting AIX 5.3 on this server. Did a minimal install with CDE, and now I've got a nice ugly CDE desktop, and a working server. Next up - how to get ssh/NFS running!

Thursday, March 06 2008 Server was able to recognize it's CD-ROM thanks to upgraded system and CD-ROM device microcode. To get the server to boot the CD-ROM however, required me to step into SMS mode, which can be triggered from the 'icon' boot menu (VGA) that appears by tapping the '1' key on the QWERTY side of the keyboard when the system beeps, or when you see the 'keyboard' icon appear. You have about a 5 second time frame to do this, or else you'll have to reboot and wait upwards of 10 minutes for the system to reboot! Not nice!

Thanks to DukeSSD for providing URL's below for the new versions of the microcode.

All:

Trying to get this damned RS/6000 to boot from CD, and it's nothing short of a nightmare.

All b*tching aside, I've followed these directions:

http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/ai...html#newovrwrt

Boot the system up, with CD in drive, wait for the old-school Apple looking icons to pop up. When I see the keyboard icon, I tapitty-tap F5 - nothing. Try again with just '5' - nothing. I even tried what another *NIX admin suggested, and tried '1' instead of the other two. Nothing.

The CD-ROM was a suspect device at first, but that's been ruled out - it's a SCSI drive and it works fine with other servers.

The CD-ROM *is* detected and configured by 'smit', and I've even removed it then added it again.

AIX 5.3 *should* support this box, seeing that it's CHRP based hardware:

http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/ai...utta_cmds.html

Code:

Hardware

How would I know if my machine is capable of running AIX 5L Version 5.3?

AIX 5L Version 5.3 runs on all currently supported CHRP (Common Hardware Reference Platform)-based POWER hardware.

How would I know if my machine is CHRP-based?

Run the prtconf command. If it's a CHRP machine, the string chrp appears on the Model Architecture line.

I'm sort of at wit's end here, as the damn RS/6000 takes 10 minutes to reboot. WHY! Ugh.. that's just horrible.

Any idears?

Thanks!

DukeSSD 03-04-2008 05:52 PM

Could be the CD drive, but you seem to be having a problem getting to SMS or the service mode boot list, so maybe not.

What machine type and model is it?

What is the firmware level on the machine?

Some of the earlier chrp machines need a firmware update to support 5.3.

What is the microcode level on the CD drive?

The 32X CD-ROM had boot issues prior to microcode level 1_03 on some chrp systems.

Updates available here:
http://www14.software.ibm.com/webapp/set2/firmware/gjsn

b1f30 03-05-2008 08:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DukeSSD (Post 3078230)
Could be the CD drive, but you seem to be having a problem getting to SMS or the service mode boot list, so maybe not.

What machine type and model is it?

What is the firmware level on the machine?

Some of the earlier chrp machines need a firmware update to support 5.3.

What is the microcode level on the CD drive?

The 32X CD-ROM had boot issues prior to microcode level 1_03 on some chrp systems.

Updates available here:
http://www14.software.ibm.com/webapp/set2/firmware/gjsn

Code:

-bash-2.05b# uname -M
IBM,7026-H70

DISPLAY MICROCODE LEVEL                                                  802811IBM,7026-H70

System Firmware level is SST02185
Service Processor level is ss020419

What's the command to display the CD-ROM's microcode?

Thanks for the help.

EDIT: I was able to get into the SMS console. Once the pretty white screen icons popped up, I started tapping '1', and it brought me to a graphical SMS screen. I'm a total AIX n00b, so I wasn't exactly sure where to go from there.

DukeSSD 03-05-2008 06:13 PM

The H70 introduced AIX 5.3 support with firmware level SST04195, this was released on SST(20)04(day)195, your firmware date is 2002, day 185. So to start you will need to update the system firmware to boot / install AIX.

Code and readme for the system and CD here:
http://www14.software.ibm.com/webapp...1&mtm=7026-H70
Check the Desc link for ways to update the firmware.

you can only have the latest which is SST06012 for the system


lscfg -vl cd0
would display the CD microcode level.
The CD code and readme is at the very bottom of the above link, if you happen to have this type of drive fitted.
Check section 3 in the readme - Desc link.

b1f30 03-06-2008 08:20 AM

Much appreciated.

Off I go to break my first AIX box.

Anything in particular that I'll want to back up before the fireworks begin?

b1f30 03-06-2008 12:30 PM

So far - so good. Got the microcode for both the system and the CD-ROM to upgrade.

Thanks much for the pointers and URL's.

I'm going to keep this thread open for posterity's sake, since I know you can buy RS/6000's on the cheap on ebay and stuff. Might be helpful for other people to know what's going on.

b1f30 03-07-2008 07:57 AM

Got the microcode updates to stick.

Using the URL's that Duke provided above, I was able to download the necessary updates to my Debian box, and push them to the server using telnet/ftp combo. This box is completely cut off from the outside world, so no security worries.

Most of the upgrades have you unzipping .BIN files into the /tmp/ directory on the AIX server, which was the case most of the time. I personally only needed 2 upgrades - the system microcode, and the CD-ROM - to get the install to kick off.

However, even with the new microcode in place, some old boxes still seem to have trouble booting from CD-ROM. See here:

http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/ai...html#newovrwrt

I used the 'F5' and '5' keys many times to try and boot the CD-ROM media - to no avail. I'm not sure why, but my system simply would not boot from it's CD-ROM using those keys, even after setting it up as the first device in the SMS menu. I needed SMS mode again.

You can boot into SMS mode by doing the following:

http://www.debian-administration.org/articles/434

Personally, I had to:

1) Power up the machine.

2) Wait 10-20 minutes - seriously.

3) If you're connected to a graphics console, you'll see a white screen, followed by a series of smallish icons that will appear horizontally around the middle of the screen. When you see the 'keyboard' icon, start tapping the '1' button for about a good 5-10 seconds. This *should* bring you into SMS mode. You can also connect via serial port with the machine powered down, but not unplugged. Hit the spacebar, and you will be given the option to boot into SMS mode.

Michael AM 03-30-2008 03:02 PM

Please note: there is an .iso image available for download with firmware for ALL IBM systems and devices. And if your system is up and running you should be able to insert the CDROM, mount it (mount -r -cdrfs /dev/cd0 /mnt) and checkout the readme file for the program to start.

It has been a long while since I have used it, so I dont know the name off the top of my head - sorry.

Using the program on the CD you can have it update the system firmware and device drivers.

And, hoping that I am not breaking any net-equite here - I also follow a AIX portal at http://rootvg.net. These kinds of questions are also answered there.

Michael AM 03-30-2008 03:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by b1f30 (Post 3081082)

1) Power up the machine.

2) Wait 10-20 minutes - seriously.

3) If you're connected to a graphics console, you'll see a white screen, followed by a series of smallish icons that will appear horizontally around the middle of the screen. When you see the 'keyboard' icon, start tapping the '1' button for about a good 5-10 seconds. This *should* bring you into SMS mode. You can also connect via serial port with the machine powered down, but not unplugged. Hit the spacebar, and you will be given the option to boot into SMS mode.

The 10 to 20 minutes is caused afaik in that each CPU does a complete memory check/scan before the system starts. I have used H70 with 4 CPU and 2G RAM, and hey take 5 to 10 minutes to start. The 1 CPU system with 2G RAM is much faster at under 5 minutes in any case.

Once you start seeing any icons, or an an ascii display the RS/6000 text scrolling over you screen you can press the ascii digit '1'. Once is suppossed to be enough, but generally I press it three times.

If you have a graphic console - and your firmware is quite old - you need to press F1 to start SMS mode. The newer firmware ALL use the ascii key '1' to enter SMS mode.

Further: '5' - default boot list in service mode; '6' service boot list (in service mode).

smohan62 03-10-2009 04:03 AM

prtconf command not working in Aix 5.3
 
put prtconf command,after show this error message:


bash-3.00# prtconf
/usr/sbin/prtconf[56]: msize=msize + 12544^J12544: syntax error




pleae help me...........waiting for replay


by

mohan.s
Aix sysadmin
mail: mohan4295@gmail.com


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