[rescue] IBM 7026-6M1

Jonathan Patschke jp at celestrion.net
Wed Jan 27 21:57:49 CST 2010

On Wed, 27 Jan 2010, Patrick Giagnocavo wrote:

>> Ah, this is your first IBM system?
> Well I am trying to decide if it is worth getting.  I don't know much
> about the memory architecture of RS6K... I figure it runs Linux decently
> given IBM's involvement, as well as AIX of course.

I've never tried running Linux on a p660, but it does run AIX
exceptionally well.  One word of advice, though: leave the system running.
Depending on the installed cards and the amount of memory, BIST/POST can
take about a half hour.

> I am not going to buy support for it, it just needs to work.

Right.  My experience with the p660 was that the power supplies in it are
relatively unstable.  We had two systems (four power supplies each) at
$agency, and I think all the supplies eventually got replaced over the
course of the two years I was there.  You will need an external disk
shelf, since the IO drawer has a pitifully small number of disk slots (2,
I think).

Oh!  One huge thing:  Be absolutely sure you get both "halves".  A lot of
eBay vendors think the primary I/O drawer is the whole system, since
that's where the CD drive, operator's panel, and power button are.  If you
open it up, you'll see lots of PCI slots, but no CPUs.  CPUs and memory
are in the CEC drawer, which is totally nondescript apart from the two
huge boa-cables running between it and the I/O drawer.

Also, note that the the IBM-specified power numbers for a p660 CEC with
one I/O drawer range from 620VA (typical) to 1140VA (maximum) @ 2015 -
3627 BTU/hr.

> If RAM is hideously expensive, it doesn't much matter how cheap the
> system is ...

It is.  My recollection is that the p660 takes IBM-proprietary 200-pin ECC
DDR DIMMs.  The p610, p615, and p630 take memory that's still quite
expensive (266MHz DDR DIMMs with ECC, I -think-), but a lot more common.

Jonathan Patschke  ) "Science is what we understand well enough to explain
Elgin, TX         (   to a computer.  Art is everything else we do."
USA                )                                    --Dr. Donald Knuth

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