Many thanks to those who responded to my request on installing RAM in
SLCs. All claimed it was dead easy, all were right. Most embarrassing
were notes from Michael Justice and Halvard Halvorsen, who pointed out
the procedures were neatly documented in the manual. With your SLC you
should have received a book with a dark blue cover titled "SPARCstation
SLC Installation & Repair Guide", part # 814-5039-02, January 1991.
Chapter 7 covers a wide array of hardware topics, including
adding/replacing memory. It's even got pictures.
For those who are manual-less, David Fetrow sent a reasonable
description which I have amended and expanded on based on the 8
machines upgraded today:
Be sure to wear a grounding strap. Take all standard static
Unplug all the connections from the SLC.
Work with the back of the SLC facing you. The instructions all assume
you are standing behind the SLC.
There are two screws at the top of the monitor just where it begins to
narrow (the bezel), and two on the flat part of the back. Remove all
Remove the plastic cover by pulling it towards you.
Inside are is one large screened area (faraday cage) that covers the
monitor and a much smaller one at the back (close to you) that covers
the motherboard. Remove the uppermost screw on each side of the top of
the smaller cage. [[Fetrows instructions mentioned four screws here.
There may be more than one cage type.]] Lift the cage top a bit, and
then it will easily pull out towards you.
You will see the motherboard mounted vertically. There are two black
fingers, one on each side of it. Lift the fingers, and they will lever
the motherboard out for you. Place it on a static-free surface.
Insert the SIMMs into the motherboard by bringing them in from an
angle, then standing them up straight while pushing them into the
socket. The SIMMs should be keyed so you can't insert them backwards.
You'll hear and feel a click when they snap in. They go in much easier
than IPC SIMMs. There are no jumpers or switches to insert -- just
stick the RAM in.
Place the motherboard back into the machine, being careful that the
board slides into the nylon guide rails. When it reaches bottom, use
the fingers again to lever it into final position.
Replace the top screen and its two screws.
Gently reattach the monitor housing, and insert its four screws.
Reattach the keyboard, ether cable, power cable, etc. Turn it on. The
power-up message should indicate the amount of RAM installed. All of
ours worked fine, so I have no idea what error messages might look
The only problems I had were with one of the monitor housings not
wanting to go back on (alignment is critical) and the housings tended
to drop down so the last 1/4" of insertion required lifting up slightly
on the front (monitor side) of the housing. Do not force things; both
the monitor cover and the cages are fragile.
Having taken apart a lot of Suns over the years, I've got to give them
credit for the SLC -- it's really easy to work on.
Many thanks to:
Michael A. Justice firstname.lastname@example.org
Halvard Halvorsen email@example.com
David Fetrow firstname.lastname@example.org
Jason Ornstein ornstein@refuge.Colorado.EDU!ornstein
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