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[comp.unix.bsd] NetBSD, FreeBSD, and OpenBSD FAQ (Part 9 of 10)

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Posted-By: auto-faq
Archive-name: 386bsd-faq/part9

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Section 8.	("Supported" Hardware List)

8.0	What hardware works!

	The problem with this section of the FAQ is that software is 
	the only reason that every PC card on the planet does not work.

	EISA cards are not directly supported; when and if EISA
	is directly supported, they will give a significant performance
	advantage to EISA bus machines.  As it happens, users who desire 
	more than 16Meg of memory must use either VESA or EISA systems.
	Even with an EISA system, many users will not be able to use the
	address space above 16Meg unless their system uses only EISA 
	cards for those devices that need access to DMA.  The limitations
	are covered in another section of the FAQ.

	Many EISA cards operate in an ISA emulation mode.  Notably, the
	Ultrastore 24F SCSI controller operates in an IDE emulation mode 
	that allows the card to be used in the current system without 
	modification.  Most EISA cards that operate in ISA mode will 
	work with 386BSD, NetBSD, or FreeBSD.

	Like EISA, MCA is unsupported currently; unlike EISA, it can't
	work until it is supported, as it doesn't fall back to ISA
	operation.  If you want to work on this problem, I'm sure that
	many people will appreciate it; you will probably need an ISA or
	EISA machine to do the work, however.

	On top of all of that, NetBSD (being the 'horizontal' entry in
	the *BSD family) supports about 13 CPUs.

8.3.1	How do I configure multiport cards?  Is there a possibility of 
	using multiport serial boards?  How do you configure an AST/4 
	in the kernel?  It looks like the AST driver only supports 
	4-port cards, but it looks like it would be easy to add support 
	for 8 ports ... or am I wrong?

	From: "Martin Husemann" <> 
	All AST 8 port Cards I have seen simply were two AST-4-port on 
	one board. You would configure them like this:

	 master	ast0	at isa? port 0x1a0 tty irq 5 vector astintr
	 master	ast1	at isa? port 0x2a0 tty irq 7 vector astintr

	With that said, the discussion about these cards continues with
	how to make older versions of *BSD react correctly to your AST
	4 or 8 port cards.

	The AST/4 and its clone multiport cards can run on 386BSD using 
	patchkit 0.2.4 and later, NetBSD, and FreeBSD.  The only
	problems seem to be that the code in older versions of
	sioprobe() and sioattach() in sio.c needs to be hacked to get
	it to properly detect the ports and then recognize the type 
	of UARTs installed (16550As).  The code segment that is causing 
	the problem is included below:

	A configuration for this is when two AST Four Port cards
	are actually used in a system.  The configuration for that looks
	like this:

	#device  sio0    at isa? port "IO_COM1" tty irq 4 vector siointr
	#device  sio2    at isa? port "IO_COM3" tty irq 5 vector siointr

	device   sio1    at isa? port 0x2a0 tty flags 0x0481
	device   sio2    at isa? port 0x2a8 tty flags 0x0481
	device   sio3    at isa? port 0x2b0 tty flags 0x0481
	device   sio4    at isa? port 0x2b8 tty irq 5 flags 0x0481 
				vector siointr

	device   sio5    at isa? port 0x1a0 tty flags 0x0881
	device   sio6    at isa? port 0x1a8 tty flags 0x0881
	device   sio7    at isa? port 0x1b0 tty flags 0x0881
	device   sio8    at isa? port 0x1b8 tty irq 4 flags 0x0881 
				vector siointr

	This is one of the areas where FreeBSD and NetBSD have
	diverged.  The actual semantics of the multiport boards have
	changed since this section was originally written (the flags
	are either no longer needed or are different in current NetBSD
	implementations, for example).

8.3.3	What is the difference between baud and bits per second?

	It's important to remember that we're transmitting symbols. Does
	this apply to digital transmissions?  Yes. A digital message is
	simply an ordered sequence of symbols from a discreet source. This
	source has an alphabet 'M' of 2 or more symbols, and produces
	the symbols at some rate 'r'.

	If we allocate a finite amount time alloted to a symbol, and call
	that time 'D', we can for once and ever define what baud is. Having
	'D', our "signaling rate" is:

	    r = 1/D                       (1)

	measured in _symbols_per_second_ or baud. For binary transmissions,
	we have a bit duration Tb, and our "bit rate" is:

	    rb = 1/Tb                     (2)

	measured in _bits_per_second_, (bps, or b/s).

	Now we note that in the special binary (M=2) case, each bit is
	a symbol and thus D=Tb, and by (1) and (2) we have:

	    r (baud) = rb (bps)           (3)

	or in English, for *binary* transmissions, we have "the signalling
	rate, measured in baud, is the same as the bit rate, which is
	measured in bps."  For all other transmissions, the signalling
	rate (baud) is not equal to the bit rate (bps).

	-Ade "never wants to see this again" Barkah

8.4	Disk Controller Problems

	There is no real list of supported wd-driver controllers.  The listx
	would be far longer than I am willing to type.  Suffice it to say 
	that virtually every know IDE/ESDI/MFM/RLL hard drive controller
	available works.  There are occasional reports that the driver
	for this particular type of disk drive is "broken", but it is hard
	to substantiate this.  There are a few known "gotchas" with this
	particular controller type, but they are fixed as soon as they are 

8.4.2	SCSI controller problems

	Every once on a great while, someone will post a problem with a
	SCSI controller.  Almost all of these are attributed to either
	a) bad cables (or out of spec cables), b) bad termination, or
	c) incorrect irq/drq setup.  Here is an excerpt of a message
	that provides some insight into one man's problems with the
	Adaptec controller, and one with the BusLogic 445.

	From: (Robert Withrow)

	Problem: When the bus hangs, all devices have their access
	lights off, the AHA his its light on. 

	Being in a hurry, I made several changes and the problem went
	away. Normally, I would change one thing at a time, but, like I
	said, I was in a hurry.  Below, I list the changes I made:

	  1) I replaced the AHA with an older one I keep as a spare.

	  2) I *inserted* the the ``synchronous negotiation'' jumper in 
	  the aha.

	  3) I removed the terminator power jumper from two of the hard

	  4) I removed and reinserted all of connectors into all of the

	If I had to guess, I bet #2 was the thing that fixed the

	The system has compiled X11 three times as well as done all 
	sorts of other things including all of the drives (cdrom, disk, 
	and tape) for three days now without a single hang. (Willem Jan Withagen) writes:

	=>  =>  The BT kernel requires the controller to be configured 
	=>  =>  for IRQ 12.  That is a strange default.  The default for 
	=>  =>  the BT445S is 11, the same as for the 1542.  You probably 
	=>  =>  just need to reconfigure the controller.
	=>  So I redid the switches and the BT kernel recognizes it on 
	=>  int 12.  Either with or without EISA DMA (switch 2-10)
	=>  it no longer generates the stray interrupt 7.
	=>  But it still doesn't boot after the message 
	=>  	'changing root device to fd0d'
	=>  So what's going on here. Is there anyway to find out more?
	=>  Or should I go to one of the FreeBSD lists and discuss it there?

	I was browsing thru the hardware manual of the BT 445S and there 
	it was on the next page :-( I was just misguided by the nice 
	switches on the card edge. 

	To set the interrupts not only the dip-switches need to be changed.
	More important is the actual and physical connection of intr 12 to
	the ISA bus connector.

	After taking the board out, and really connecting intr 12, the 
	system booted the BT kernel without a glitch.  I'm now compiling a 
	new kernel with all our options set as we'd like them to be. 

	The current config:
		16 Mb
		BT 445S with intr 12 and switch 2-10 in default state, 
		giving DMA on channel 5.

	Things I'm going to test:
		toggling the 2-10 switch
		adding 16 MB more.

8.5	SCSI Controllers

	The list of "supported" hard drive controllers is very short.
	Basically, it is any hard drive controller that emulates a
	standard IDE/ESDI/MFM controller and a few SCSI controllers.  
	The short list is included below:

	These boot with the kcaha floppy:
		Adaptec 1522		ISA	SCSI	Experimental
		AIC-6260 based		ISA	SCSI	
		AIC-6360 based		ISA	SCSI
		Adaptec 1540[ABC]	ISA	SCSI	No Floppy
		Adaptec 1542[ABC]	ISA	SCSI
		Adaptec 174x		EISA	SCSI
		Adaptec 294x		????	SCSI	Not supported
		Ultrastore 14F		ISA	SCSI
		Ultrastore 24F		EISA	SCSI
		Ultrastore 34F		VLB	SCSI
		Buslogic BT542		ISA	SCSI	
		Buslogic BT545		ISA	SCSI	(Old ones only)
		Buslogic BT946C		PCI	SCSI
		NCR 53C810 based	PCI	SCSI

	These boot with the kcbt floppy:
		Buslogic BT742A		EISA	SCSI
		Buslogic BT747A		EISA	SCSI	(modified 742 driver)
		Buslogic BT445S		VLB	SCSI

	Note that the Ultrastore 24F is supported with an experimental
	driver or in IDE emulation mode only.  Any controller that
	purports to be a clone of one of the cards listed above will
	usually work as well.

	The '{something} based' cards above are special in that many 
	controllers use these controller chips as the basis for their 
	implementation.  The AIC-6260 is the chip set in the Adaptec 
	1522 series controllers, and the AIC-6360 is the chipset used 
	in the Soundblaster SCSI controller.  There are several PCI 
	controllers that are using the NCR chipset.

	In addition, there is a special note for Buslogic card users.

	The card should be configured to use ioaddr 0x330 and IRQ 12.
	There are two places the IRQ needs to be set.  The first is a
	bank of dip switches, and te next is a jumper.  See your hard
	drive controller documentation for the exact settings.

	Once you've got the controller on the right settings.  As it
	says in the README.INSTALL file, after all:

	BT742 SCSI Cntlr.       0x330   12               [kcopy-bt-floppy]

	So I can only conclude that you've probably not configured the
	card for EISA DMA!  From the /usr/src/KNOWNBUGS file:

            The Bt445S and Bt747 controllers can cause problems when
	    ISA DMA is selected as an option.  With the EISA controller
	    the remedy is easy - simply turn it off using your EISA 
	    configuration utility.  With the Bt445S, which is a VLB
	    card, you must switch the undocumented "SW10" on "SB2" to
	    the off position.  Also note that certain revisions of the
	    Buslogic board (Revision C or earlier, firmware revision
	    <3.37) will cause DATA CORRUPTION with systems containing
	    more than 16MB of memory.  If you find this to be the case, 
	    temporarily remove your extra memory and contact Buslogic
	    for an upgrade!

	The BT946C PCI card works flawlessly.  The only thing that needs
	to be done to it is to ensure that the the two jumpers that
	control how and if to autoconfig are removed.  This allows the
	system to autoconfigure everything in the card.  The best thing
	to do is simply set the card to use the "Autoconfig to default"

8.6	Network Cards

	Common misconception number 1: Why does BSD still support such 
	a small selection of network cards?

	Depends on what you mean by `small'.  Here is the 'short list'.

	3c501                   isa     if_el           (
	3c503			isa	if_el		(mycroft) 
	3C507			isa	if_el		(mycroft) 
	3c509  			isa	if_ep   bnc/aui/utp.      (tdr)
	3c579			eisa	if_ep		  (tdr)
	WD 8390-based cards 	isa	if_ed		  (mycroft)
	SMC 8390-based cards 	isa	if_ed		  (mycroft)
	NE1000, NE2000    	isa	if_ed		  (mycroft)
	NE2100/BICC Isolan/DEPCA isa	if_le		  (mycroft)
	AT&T StarLAN (82586-based cards)		  (mycroft)

	These are all in NetBSD, and FreeBSD (by inference)

   	Common question number 2: I have a 3Com 3c509 - is it supported?

	The 3C509 works well under NetBSD-current, and has been clocked
	at full ethernet speed.  To use the UTP connection, you will need
	to specify the link0 and link1 options in the ifconfig command.

		-link0  disable AUI/UTP. enable BNC.
		link0   disable BNC. enable AUI.
		link1   if the card has a UTP connector, and link0 is
			set too, then you get the UTP port.

8.7	Printers
	First, set up your printer so it uses the 'LF' code as its 
	CR+LF (End of line) character.  If you use your machine for 
	operations in more than one OS (like some of us that HAVE 
	to use DOS :-( ) then you can include a control sequence in 
	the 'ff' control in your /etc/printcap file.

	Here is an example printcap to show you how simple it is:

	lp|ljgpc_deskjet|HP DeskJet Plus:\

	For the HP LaserJet III (running PostScript) or the Deskjet 540 
	printers, the sequence is a little more involved:

	First, it looks like you will need to install ghostscript.  I have 
	a Desk Jet 540 that I use with the printcap entry and filter 
	included below.  You could hack the filter slightly to produce 
	output for your Laser Jet III (try changing "-sDEVICE=djet500" to 

	You'll need perl and gs installed on your system.  You also need to
	ensure that gs has the ljet3 driver installed.  You can find out by
	running "gs -h" and looking to see if the driver is listed.

	--- printcap entry ---
	lp|HP Deskjet 540:\

	--- /var/spool/ps-filter ---
	# Filter which detects postscript files and appends cr to lines of text.
	# $Id: ps-filter,v 1.3 1995/02/14 01:05:59 brian Exp $
	$_ = <STDIN>;
	if (/^%!/)
    	    # Pipe the file as-is to the ghostscript interpreter.
    	    # Postscript files have their pages reversed because my
    	    # DeskJet 540 stacks them in reverse order if I don't.
    	    $tmp_dir = "/tmp/lp-gs.$$";
    	    chdir $tmp_dir;
    	    open(PIPE, "|$gs -q -sDEVICE=djet500 -sOutputFile=%03d.lj -")
		|| die "$0: can't run ghostscript: $!";
    	    print PIPE $_;
    	    while (<STDIN>)
		print PIPE $_;
    	    close PIPE;
    	    system $cat, @pages;
    	    unlink @pages;
    	    chdir $old_dir;
    	    rmdir $tmp_dir;
	elsif (&isprint() && !/\r\n$/)
    	    # Send the text to the printer with trailing lf converted to crlf.
    	    while (<STDIN>)
    	    while (<STDIN>)
	sub isprint
    	    ($c) = split(//,$_);
    	    return ($c =~ /[\s\n]/) || (ord($c) >= 32 && ord($c) < 127);

	If you are having trouble with the JetDirect card, this entry
	should work adequately for you, although printing and querying
	may not be completely solid:

		laser: \
        		:rm=laser.kew.utl: \
			:rp=lp: \
			:sd=/usr/spool/lpd/laser: \
			:lf=/var/log/lpd-errs: \
			:sh: \
			:rs: \
			:ff=: \

8.7.1	How can I print big files (especially from SAMBA, the WfWg
	network program)?

	First step:  Add ":mx#0:" to the printer's entry in /etc/printcap.

	Once you have "mx#0" in your /etc/printcap entry, make
	sure you have enough disk space in the "/var" filesystem to 
	handle the job.  Also beware that "lpr -s" can fail obscurely
	if the file you are printing (and the path to it) are not accessible
	by the user daemon.

8.8	Tape Drives.
8.8.1	What are the jumper configurations for the Exabyte 8200 DAT tape

	Jumpers/switches are on the MX board. I think that the top of the 
	case and the board must be removed to access jumpers/switches.  
	Per a November 1989 8200 Spec there are at least two different MX 
	boards. Level 1, part no 724021-xxx has jumpers. Level 2, part no 
	724022-xxx has switches.

	Level 1 Jumper Configuration:

	J1 L-M Bypass Memory Test - 8 Second Startup
    	   M-R Run Memory Test - 65 Second Startup

	J2 L-M Parity Checking Enabled
   	   M-R Parity Checking Disabled

	J3 L-M Even Byte Disconnect
           M-R Odd or Even Byte Disconnect

	J4 L-M No Busy Enable
           M-R Report Busy Status

	J5 L-M P6 Cartridge Type - Domestic
    	   M-R P1 Cartridge Type - International

	J6 L-M Reserved for future use

	J7 L-M Normal Operations
   	   M-R No Disconnect in Data Phase

	J8 L-M Fixed Block Mode on Power Up
   	   M-R Variable Block Mode on Power Up

	Level 2 Switch Configuration:

	SW1 Off Run Memory Test - 65 Second Startup
    	    On Bypass Memory Test - 8 Second Startup

	SW2 Off Parity Checking Disabled
     	    On Parity Checking Enabled

	SW3 Off Odd or Even Byte Disconnect
    	    On Even Byte Disconnect

	SW4 Off Report Busy Status
    	    On No Busy Enable

	SW5 Off Fixed Block Mode on Power Up
    	    On  Variable Block Mode on Power Up

	SW6 Off Normal Operations
    	    On No Disconnect in Data Phase

	SW7 Off Reserved for Future Use

	SW8 Off P6 Cartridge Type - Domestic
    	    On P1 Cartridge Type - International

8.9	QIC-40/80 tape drives

	Steve Gerakines has released a series of patches for FreeBSD that
	allow the use of the QIC-40/80 tape drives through the floppy
	controller.  Get them from
	or a similar mirror site, if there are any.  Archie will be able
	to tell you for certain.

8.10	CD-ROMs

	The Sony CDU 561 works well, as do the Toshiba 401 and 4101.  The
	4101 is a double speed SCSI-2 device and allows 'grabbing' of
	music tracks.

	Many folks have announced that they had problems with Mitsumi
	CD-ROM drives.  It seems that there are nearly as many releases
	of the firmware as there were drives sold.  Many of the firmware
	versions were incompatible with each other.  A generic Mitsumi
	driver will be a hard act to accomplish, if it is possible at all.
	The current Mitsumi driver seems to work well with all of the
	Mitsumi controllers (FD-001x and older).

	There are native (non-EIDE) Mitsumi CD-ROM drivers for NetBSD and 
	FreeBSD.  They are available in the latest release version of each.
	If your CD-ROM is not recognized by the kernel, and uses a Mitsumi
	controller, you will need to make changes to the mcd.c source
	file to change the behavior of the first getreply() function.
	Instead of exiting immediately, the check for whether the
	getreply was successful should be commented out and assumed to
	be correct.  While this is a brute force method (it may find a
	CD-ROM that isn't even there) it will help many Mitsumi
	controllers probe correctly.  

	The EIDE ATAPI CD-ROM drive is now supported in the -current
	versions of FreeBSD and OpenBSD, and is supported experimentally 
	in NetBSD Version 1.2 and higher.

	FreeBSD also supports the Matsushita (Panasonic) CD-ROM drives.  

	The only other commonly available CD-ROM drive that is not
	supported is the SONY CD-ROM.  

8.10.1	How can I mount my CD-ROM so that it appears to be writable?

	There are two ways.  If the version of *BSD you have supports
	the union file system, you can use the following:

	    mount -t union -o -b /cdrom/ports /usr/ports
	    cd /usr/ports
	    make all install

	If you want to use an fstab entry, try this:

	    /cdrom/ports /usr/src union rw,-b 0 0

	If your version of *BSD doesn't support union file systems, you
	could use something like this:

	    mount /dev/cd0a /cdrom
	    mkdir /usr/ports
	    cd /usr/ports
	    lndir /cdrom/ports .
	    <wait for dirs to link up>

	    cd /usr/ports/mail/elm
	    make all install

Dave Burgess                   Network Engineer - Nebraska On-Ramp, Inc.
*bsd FAQ Maintainer / SysAdmin for the NetBSD system in my spare bedroom
"Just because something is stupid doesn't mean there isn't someone that 
doesn't want to do it...."

User Contributions:

Apr 12, 2022 @ 11:11 am
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