[rescue] SGI Indy questions

Gerhard Lenerz mail at g-lenerz.de
Sun Jan 12 03:11:25 CST 2003

Hello Curtis & all,

Sunday, January 12, 2003, 7:24:26 AM, you wrote:

> Identify the hardwware....
> SGI Indy
> Model CMN B006Y66

  indicates configuration the machine was shipped in.

> CPU: yellow sticker: BEV554 
>      Assy 030 0752-001 Rev D

  R4600PC/133 CPU Module (no second level cache)

> Graphics: yellow sticker: BEL212
>           Assy 030 8263-001 Rev C

  8bit Graphics

> No hd present (bracket is present)
> No floppy present (bracket is missing)

  Bad, but not too bad. Use an external disk or put one in there
  without drivesled (be careful!).

> I have an Indy R4400 175MHz processor module: Yellow sticker: CCK176
>                                               Assy 030 0882-001

  Much better than the CPU installed. Much more balanced Int/FP
  performance, 1MB second level cache.

> System appears to use 72 pin RAM... I'm guessing FPM 60ns 36bit ECC ?

  36bit parity ram. 2 banks of 4 modules each. Maximum size per module
  is 32MB (total maximum memory: 256MB).

> System has a 13W3 video connector.... will this work with a Sun monitor ?
> If not, will it work with a PC monitor using a Sun 13W3 to VGA adapter ?

  Aaaah... good question. Comparing Sun/SGI I think these companies
  weren't the same opinion on on which of the smaller pins CSYNC has
  to go. What is no problem is using 13W3 -> 3BNC on a decent
  sync-on-green capable monitor.

> What kind of keyboard and mouse does this use (I do not have one) ?


> What is the max video and max cpu for this box, and is it cheap/feasable
> to obtain while parts are still available (that is if they are still available)?

  Usually it's better to buy just the box you want. "High end" spares
  have a tendency of getting quite pricey.

> Can I digitize incoming video ?

  Yes, but I don't think that you can capture video streams without
  additional compression cards in a reasonable way (bandwidth problem
  I think). For screenshots the video input is quite nice though.

> What software would be required ?

  Comes with IRIX.

> I see a 13W3 video port and a port for 3-D glasses


> I see earphone, microphone audio in, audio out, audio in/out ??? ports

  Digital Audio.

> I see RCA video (NTSC?) out, S-Video out ?, and a 60 pin video? connector
> (what is that !?).

  RCA is PAL/NTSC I think. The 60pin connector is a digital video
  input for use with the IndyCam. Useless otherwise.

> I see an AUI ethernet port (ordinary) (on the graphics card !?!?)

  No, there is a small riser board on the mainboard.

> I see a 10baseT port (I assume 10Mbit, not 10/100)

  Right. You can use either 10baseT *or* AUI.

> I see a mouse port, keyboard port


> I see a 1 and 2 port (are these serial?)

  Yup. A Mac serial cable/adapter will do the trick.

> I see a parellel and a scsi port


> I assume the box is Fast SCSI (10MB/sec max) and uses ordinary SCSI disks ?

  Quite ordinary stuff, yes.

> What OS loads will work on this box ?

  I think support started somewhere in the good old IRIX 5.3 days. A
  good choice would be any of the later all-platform releases (6.2 or
  6.5 - any other 6.x releases where platform specific).

> And more importantly where can I get them ?

  Uuuh... there is ebay, there are friends with IRIX CDs and -of
  course- there will be SGI.

> Will a cdrom that can be set to 512 byte block mode be required
> like the early Sun systems (not a problem... I have a couple of plextor 4X
> drives with that jumper along with an external Sun 2X cdrom drive).

  Hmmm... I think it selects blocksize when it is powered on.

> Is there a max capacity hard disk ?

  Never hit it. I think 9GB, 18GB were successfully used. After all...
  I think I know a guy who is using a significantly larger IDE disk
  with a IDE-SCSI adapter attached.

> Lots of questions I know...  I'd assume that even if this box runs open
> source OSes (Linux, BSD) that in order to use any of the features I'd
> need Irix ?

  Yup. There *is* an open source distribution that works on the Indy,
  but of course it'll perform not as good as IRIX.

> Which then brings up another question.... did the graphics
> programs come with Irix, or where they unbundled software ?

  There are only a few basic tools and demos. An 8bit Indy isn't a
  hell of a graphics machine anyway. It's still a very nice

> This is my first dabling into an SGI...  Can't say I though much of the
> construction compared to Sun boxes... seems sort of between that of PC
> construction quality and Sun construction quality.... someone bent the
> metal tabs that held the power supply onto the chassis, and the broke off
> when I tried to straighten them... so I found some screws and nuts, and
> attached it my own way... .it's very rigid now!

  Keep in mind that the Indy was the lowcost model of it's time. The
  usual SGI is more like a real heavy metal beast with some nice
  plastic skin wrapped around it.

Best regards,
 Gerhard                            mailto:mail at g-lenerz.de

Old SGI Stuff                       http://sgistuff.g-lenerz.de/

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