SUMMARY: Legacy system: Sun 3/60

From: Sam Don (
Date: Tue Jun 20 2000 - 18:08:14 CDT


Replacing the motherboard resolved my problem, but lots of people had good
suggestions. I'm emailing this in the hope that this might be of use to
someone else.

Thanks to everyone for responding.


David Evans <>

>Our labs here have a couple of 'Sun 3/60's from my grandma's days. None of
>the regular commands (format/uname) etc on it seem to work. The OS on it is
>apparently 'Sun Unix 4.0'. Note: it does NOT say SunOS 4.0.

Solaris is SunOS 5.x + a windowing system. SunOS 5.x and above is a System
V, Release 4 variant and is reasonably close to posix compliant.

SunOS 4.x (or as you saw Sun Unix 4.x) is a BSD variant.

The boot command from the eprom will be close to
boot sd(0,3,0)
but its been some time. print-env from the eeprom prompt should give
you the correct format.

Due to some vagaries that I haven't had time to chase up the boot
disk is normally 3 if it has a SCSI id of 1.

This is four years since I last looked at SunOS 4.x so I hope this
has helped. Check out under the Sun resources
and there is a SunOS 4.x FAQ there.


"Jarrett Carver" <>

It's possible you will get all the help you need from this
list, however, if not try The host of this
site also has a site, and several
faqs/info sheets regarding older H/W. There is a mailing list
as well, and it probably would'nt hurt to float a message there

This is just another avenue to check. I have no experience with
anything older than a SPARC classic, so I am of no real help in
the matter.

those old 3/60 are probably not worth trying to get to boot-
they will net boot, given a new enough prom. The disks should
be available to another scsi device, IE - hook them up to a scsi chain
and try to mount (RO ) the unix file systems... you can get the geometry
and partitioning from the 'format' command, most likely, saves trying to
get the main disk label and dump it. Use the box they are in, since the
old shoe box type drives had scsi adaptor cards to st406(?) or ESDI
disk drives....Oh heck, open them up...maybe you'll get lucky and have
a nice Common Command Set scsi drive without adaptor cards!

The old 68K boxen are fun if you have time to spare -- another place to get
some booting help would be to look for the old 68K Xterminal software
that let the 3/60's be used as Xterms... it should still be floating around
the net some where. I think that the last SUNos 4 series CDrom had a boot
partition, too for the old 68K stuff ( not the Solaris 1 release CD...).

Birger Wathne <>

Is the failure on this machine a physical failure so you have to move the
disk across to another system to get the data?

The 3/60's use SCSI, so you can connect the disk to another host, either
by replacing the existing drive on that host or by making sure SCSI id's
don't clash and hook it up in addition to the existing drive. If the
existing drive isn't terminated externally, it will probably have internal
terminators that must be removed before you can hook a disk after it on
the chain. They are usually 3 yellow or black resistor packs that can be
pulled out of sockets on the PCB on the disk.

If you want 2 disks on one host, you may also have to compile a new kernel
if they run a kernel that has been optimized to only support one drive. If
you can find the config file used to build the existing kernel you can see
which SCSI id's it's set up to support.

You are probably back to SunOS 3.x. 3.5 was the last one, as far as I
remember. To format a hard drive you have to boot the diagnostic kernel. I
think I can get the manuals on that if you need it.

I recently set up a Micropolis 2112 disk on a 3/60 running SunOS 3.5. I
was afraid a 2GB disk would be too much for that OS, so I labeled the disk
using the same label as the customer had on his existing disks. He only
got something like 300-400MB out of a 2GB drive, but the machine was able
to get back to doing its job. I believe this should work with any SCSI
disk. Just apply the label for the biggest disk you find supported in
format.dat, or use the same label as the old disk to make all systems look

If you have a newer Sun system somewhere, you could hook up an existing
drive and a new one and
dd if=/dev/rdsk/c0tXd0s2 of=/dev/rdsk/c0tYd0s2 bs=32k
or something like that to clone it, then set the new disk to the same SCSI
id as the original and you should have a bootable disk.
Tom Crummey <>


You could tack the broken system's disk box onto the working one. You will
need to open the box and change the disk address. Adress 2 would be the

When you reboot the 3/60, hopefully it will recognise the second disk and
you can then mount the partitions on the system. I would advise you to
fsck them.

uname was introduced in SunOS 5. You have the BSd variant of SUN's unix
which lasted to 4.1.4

Michael Maciolek <>

You said "a couple of Sun 3/60s" - does that mean you have one
that's still working?

It's theoretically possible to daisy-chain two of those external
drive enclosures together, but it involves opening up the case
and fiddling with a DIP switch to change the SCSI id so both can
coexist on the same SCSI bus. You'd also have to remove
termination resistors from one of the controllers.

You probably have an ESDI disk with an Emulex MD21 ESDI/SCSI
adapter card. If there's a QIC tape drive in there too, the tape
drive connects to an Emulex MT-02 SCSI controller.

You can find some documentation for these boards at:

Once you've set the SCSI ID to some non-conflicting value, removed
the termination resistor-packs, and cabled the two enclosures to
the still-working 3/60, you can do further diagnostics from there.

(you didn't say what the other 3/60 is running or even if it would
be available for your recovery efforts; if not, you could also try
to hook the scsi disk to a newer Sun system - provided you have the
right SCSI cable.)

Then, you have to hope the drive will come online and that the data
you need to recover is still readable.


Hartmut Martens <>

Hello sam don,
i think you need aboot tape or another disk with the same or newer
please send me more information about the sun and the boot message
Hartmut Martens
----------- (Marz Consulting Inc. (Steve Maher))

i have an old 3/60 in my office and i also have some i386 Sun boxes as well
with the OS on tape. I havent had time to mess with them so you can have the
stuff. send me an email if interested and i'll send you the details of what
i have and we'll see if what i have will help you out.


"Caparrosso, Nelson T." <>

Oh yeah... I remember grandpa's shop used to have lots of these Motorola
(68xxx) based Sun boxens. You need to find the QIC OS tape and of course an
old working QIC drive and do a boot st(0,1,0) - I think. Another trick you
could try is use one of the oter working SUn 3/60 to revive the failed one
- you can dd it's system disk to the failed one's system disk. Of course you
need to daisy chain it to the working one, do your format etc and do the
Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Fri Sep 28 2001 - 23:14:10 CDT