Systems in Mothballs


Sun Enterprise 420R
3 x 450MHz UltraSparc-II (4MB cache) processors
1024MB RAM
2 x 18.2GB 10Krpm SCSI hard drives (RAID-1)
on-board Fast Ethernet NIC (hme)
on-board UltraSCSI
OS: Solaris 9
  Authentication (NIS), Internal DNS (Bind),
  E-Mail (Sendmail, MIMEDefang, SpamAssassin, Cyrus IMAPd),
  Web server (Apache), Remote access
In my on-going efforts to not pay an insane fortune for electricity, I migrated to this machine from an E4000. On the upside, I can now more easily use 450MHz processors (versus 336MHs ones), and can even use SunPCi cards. However, this machine is now being phased out, since I have turned my SB1000 into a server. Its services are in the process of being migrated to Hyperion and Neutronium.

Heracles (old)

Sun Ultra Enterprise 4000
8 x 336MHz UltraSparc-II (4MB cache) processors
2048MB RAM
2 x 18.2GB 10Krpm SCSI hard drives (RAID-1)
SCSI 32X CD-ROM drive
SCSI DDS3 12/24GB tape drive
2 x on-board Fast Ethernet NIC (hme)
2 x on-board Fast/Wide SCSI
on-board dual FC-AL (SOC+)
Antares SBus UltraSCSI card
SBus Fast Ethernet NIC (hme)
SBus Gigabit Ethernet NIC (gem)
2 x JNI SBus FC64-1063 FC HBA
    (connected to the FibreVault)
OS: Solaris 9
  File server (NFS/Samba), Authentication (NIS), Internal DNS (Bind),
  E-Mail (Sendmail, MIMEDefang, SpamAssassin, Cyrus IMAPd),
  Web server (Apache), Sun Ray server, Remote access
Finally, I have a "real" enterprise-grade server. This would be my third attempt at having a "big" machine, of sorts. Thankfully, it is also the most powerful of all my attempts. This system is now in the migration phase, where I'm bringing services over from Photon as I have time. Eventually this will be my main central server.
This machine is the product of a very nice friend, and some good fortune in the second-hand market. Loading out one of these is actually a lot cheaper than you might think. In any case, I really look forward to putting it through its paces.
However, due to practicality and electricity costs, I've retired this machine in favor of something smaller and less power hungry.
(note: photo is technically an E4500, but the machines are nearly identical in form and function)

SGI Origin FibreVault

10 x 36GB 7200rpm FC drives
2 x SGI THOR storage processors (SP)
  256MB write cache
  64MB read cache
  2 x FC interfaces to host
10 x 36GB 10000rpm FC drives
2 x Standby Power Supply
  SP-A: 10-drive RAID-5 (324GB)
  SP-B: 10-drive RAID-5 (324GB)
   Striped together on the file server,
   to effectively provide a 648GB RAID 5+0
   (or about 600GB of actual usable space)
This is my new big storage project. It is a real fibre channel RAID box. While not technically a computer, it has enough guts to justify its own entry on this page. The advantage of a box like this, is that I can actually set it up to connect to multiple servers (i.e. SAN). In addition, being both Fibre Channel and having its own RAID controllers, a box like this is actually better supported than simpler solutions on high-end server machines. I've been keeping my collected notes on my experiences with the device on this page.
However due to practicality and electricity costs (this thing uses over 800W), I have shut down this array and may wind up selling the hardware to reimburse myself for some of the cost of the SATA array I put into Photon.


SGI Indigo 2
195MHz MIPS R10000 (1MB cache) processor
4GB SCSI hard drive
High Impact graphics
on-board 10Base-T NIC
OS: IRIX 6.5.6
Approx. original price: $25000+, circa 1996 (rough guess)
This is probably one of my most expensive "impulse buys". However, I think it was worth it, as I got a great deal. I basically bought this machine in exchange for waiting another 6 months on upgrading Omega. It's really nice, and I still use it for OpenGL and some audio stuff.


Sun SPARCstation 5
85MHz MicroSparc-II processor
TurboGX framebuffer
Two 1.05GB SCA SCSI drives
on-board NIC
s-bus 10/100 NIC
OS: OpenBSD 3.1
Approx. original price: $10000, circa 1994
I got this from a random impulse buy on eBay. Basically, I got a bare-bones system on the cheap. The TGX used to be in my IPX, but that system was too slow to show it's performance. I got the RAM from an Xterminal 1 that I used to use. Now that I have a good Sun workstation (proxima), this machine had become my firewall box. It has since been retired in favor of a newer machine.
(note: the photo is of the Xt1, but the case is the same)


IBM RS/6000 POWERserver 590
66MHz POWER2 processor
9.0 GB SCSI hard drive
CD-ROM drive
Exabyte 8200 tape drive
10Base-T 3Com MCA NIC
OS: AIX 4.3.3
Lately, I've had some strange desire to get a "real" server. Some kind of beast. My first attempt was with a Sun 670MP. That thing made way too much noise, and wasn't very powerful for it. This machine is from the same era, but is a lot better. First of all, IBM knows how to properly design cooling in this system. As a result, this thing is incredibly quiet. Also, IBM really knows how to design a processor. Although the clock speed may look low, this thing's floating point performance gives my 266MHz Pentium II a run for its money. This machine was my main NIS server and web server for a while, but is currently sitting in storage. (note: not actual photo; my tape drive is full-height and CD-ROM is caddy-load)

Due to some mouse-related damage and general age, this machine is now no longer completely functional. It may be quirky from time to time if fired up, but has essentially been decomissioned and turned into a permanent end-table.


IBM RS/6000 POWERstation 42T
120MHz PowerPC 604 processor
512kb L2 cache
2.2GB SCSI hard drive
2.2GB SCSI hard drive
GXT500D Graphics Adapter
MCA FDDI adapter
OS: AIX 4.3.3
This is my second RS/6000 workstation. I got it due to a good deal on eBay. It is faster than my old POWERstation 350 in every respect. What I really like about this machine is that its got support for 24-bit color graphics.

BayStack 350T 16-port 10/100 Ethernet Switch

This was the box that all my Ethernet links passed through.
It is a managed device, so I can get to it from the console
server or with telnet depending on how I configure it.
These days I have two, and pretty much use them as spare
take-around-with-me switches for installfests and the like.