I just bought an IBM z890

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Conmega

I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Conmega » Fri Nov 06, 2015 11:02 pm

So I bought an IBM z890 for $237 from Rutger's University off govdeals.com
The starting bid was 100 bucks figured why not, and won it.
http://imgur.com/a/5uWit
The SEs are fine and have the default SERVICE/SERVMODE login.
That was a heck of an adventure to get into the basement (since the rack alone weighs 800lbs) but its down there now and I have been able to successfully Power-on and preform a 'Power-on Reset' on the system. Now I am at the problem of all the old setup information being in there from the university not helping with the confusion of learning how to use the thing. Along with the fact that I have to reconfigure the I/O because when I was removing the I/O modules the heat-sinks were falling off due to failed thermal compound. This damaged a pair of Ethernet modules thus requiring me to remove them from the I/O cage. I currently have 4 FICON, 3 fast ethernet, 2 ESCON modules that should work (some of them may also be damaged, I will have to test them somehow), and yes I replaced the thermal adhesive in them.

My plan is to get linux running on it via FTP as of now until I get the FC SAN box I ordered that will give me SCSI and allow me to use a standard SCSI hard drive array as storage.

Anyway can anyone here help me out in re-configuring the thing?
I have the PDFs that explain it but I'm a little confused, especially considering there is a lot of old configuration that isn't helping (also it seems the old I/O config may have been wiped? not sure)...
Anyone who helps me out I will personally give SSH access to it to play with if you want :)
Just don't expect 24/7 up-time (let alone 24 hour up-time) since powering this thing is expensive haha.

I'd greatly appreciate any help.
Thanks!
-Connor K



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Anuj Dhawan
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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Anuj Dhawan » Sat Nov 07, 2015 12:41 pm

I think it's going to be a tough ride for you. I looked at the pictures you shared, they look attractive - well, for every z users, they'll I believe! :)

However, when I looked for the installation guide for z890 it did not sound that it's goona be easy, as I said in the start of my post. How about the software you run on it?


Thanks,
Anuj

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Robert Sample
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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Robert Sample » Sat Nov 07, 2015 7:04 pm

What operating system are you planning on using? Did it come with disk drives or any external media?




Topic Author
Conmega

Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Conmega » Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:57 pm

I plan on running linux.
No storage came with it but last night after hours of work with a friend I was able to figure out how to reconfigure the I/O and create a new LPAR.
We were then able to start the install of Debian for zseries over FTP but obviously with no storage at the moment (other than FTP which I don't think is an option for install) we didn't get far.
The roadblock we are at now is the fact that the Debian installer should be creating an SSH over one of the OSA ports but how do I know the IP address of those ports?!
The only installation instructions we are finding for linux is through something like z/VM doing stuff directly through the SE (or HMC) doesn't seem easy...
I can find out the MAC address of each port but not the IP address, and or tell it to make an IP address. I've also done network scans in my subnet to try and find if it was auto assigned an IP by my router and get nothing...

Now as for storage I plan to use one of the FICON ports in FCP mode with an IBM 2108-G07 SAN Data Gateway. This will give me SCSI storage.
And from what I've read SAN storage is able to be used by Linux, where as if say I wanted to install z/OS, which would be nearly impossible to get a copy and or license of, I would need proper FICON or ESCON storage (read EXPENSIVE!).

So that's the game plan, and the troubles so far.

-Connor K




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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by William Collins » Sun Nov 08, 2015 1:50 pm

Do you have any relationship with the University it came from? Can you make one? Do they have a newer Mainframe? If Yes to two of those, you could try to get their assistance to take your disks and install your Linux on them (or one). I'm not sure if there is a "single-pack" equivalent of Linux, I've no idea of the Admin side of z/Linux and hardware.

There is an *old* VM you could use, but I have no clue if it has the capability for what you need (it is unaware of z/Linux, and I have no clue of the extent it would need to be aware).



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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Anuj Dhawan » Sun Nov 08, 2015 2:19 pm

PS.: Why don't you, Conmega, join us. I mean, you know, it's a guest Forum! If you do so, users here might also learn a thing or two in the process.


Thanks,
Anuj

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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by William Collins » Mon Feb 01, 2016 2:23 pm

"Tomorrow", I don't know if 1 or 2 Feb, at noon Connor is streaming his install of Linux on this machine.

He had some fun and power problems last night my time (24:00 WET onwards).

http://www.twitch.tv/conmega



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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Anuj Dhawan » Mon Feb 01, 2016 3:15 pm

I was on a laptop which is running a service which blocks some of the pictures to load properly. However, even when I access your post from a personal laptop with no such service or firewall I just see a "white box", William. Possibly I missed to comprehend the message properly, did I?


Thanks,
Anuj

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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by enrico-sorichetti » Mon Feb 01, 2016 3:57 pm

from what I understood it will be a LIVE streaming video

and the OFFLINE sign at the top left of the video seems to confirm it


cheers
enrico
When I tell somebody to RTFM or STFW I usually have the page open in another tab/window of my browser,
so that I am sure that the information requested can be reached with a very small effort 8-)


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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by William Collins » Mon Feb 01, 2016 4:03 pm

Yes, it was live and the next one will be live. Trouble is, although "noon" is self-explanatory, "tomorrow" isn't necessarily so, at 3am his time (8am mine). I caught the first hour, and the last half hour.

The guy has a basement full of "projects", including a PDP-11, and a Data General machine, amongst other stuff.

For later for the Mainframe, he has a 3174 and an actual 3270(?) terminal, but until then he is going to be emulating.



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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by Anuj Dhawan » Tue Feb 02, 2016 10:46 am

Edit authority helps some time! :) Could grab the URL for the video but I'm on a different laptop now which does not allow to play the videos. Will check it in evening.

Too many projects...another "basement company" is in making!?


Thanks,
Anuj

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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by nicc » Tue Feb 02, 2016 8:37 pm

I just see a vast expanse of nothingness (a prairie?) even with ad-blocker turned off and the page refreshed.


Regards
Nic


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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by William Collins » Tue Feb 02, 2016 9:25 pm

It is live-streamed. If he is not there, there won't be anything to see.




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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by enrico-sorichetti » Thu Feb 04, 2016 3:47 pm

If he is not there, there won't be anything to see.
and even if the TS was there, there would be nothing interesting to see,
just some wild clicking looking for something nobody is interested about
( some gaming software )


cheers
enrico
When I tell somebody to RTFM or STFW I usually have the page open in another tab/window of my browser,
so that I am sure that the information requested can be reached with a very small effort 8-)


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Re: I just bought an IBM z890

Post by William Collins » Thu Feb 04, 2016 6:11 pm

Well, it was very interesting on Sunday. The box standing in his basement, trying to get the power-supply working (in the end routed from the back to the front) and looking at the lights. Once powered up, and through the startup stuff, gets to OS/2 Warp, trying to work out how to change the IO configuration. By the morning, that was done, but the first attempt to install a particular Linux was being abandoned in favour of the next attempt, at "noon" sometime with SuSE, if I remember correctly.

Over the talking, you can hear the fans blasting away trying to keep the thing cool.



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