OS2 World.Com Forum

Subject  :  Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  ward
Date  :  25 Aug, 2006 on 11:42
I have installed a Dialogic D/41D communications board (ISA)in a machine which will be used for voice mail (AVT Call Express 4.0). During bootup, everything seems to work OK and the board downloads firmware successfully, however eventually it says the board failed (I know its a good board). I'm thinking perhaps its a memory issue. The board uses 8K shared memory with a base addess of D000h (and 3 other addess options are available). The IRQ=5, and I don't think that is the issue. My question is: is their a command or something I can insert into the config.sys file that will reserve this block for the board? I'm an OS/2 newbie, so perhaps there are better ways to troubleshoot this. The board is a retired product and its hard to find diagnostic utilities for it...

A second problem is the voice mail app inserted a startup command so I can never get back to OS/2. The voice mail app fails its POST (because of the board failure) and won't shutdown, as a result I can't edit the startup file to stop this while I troubleshoot. It allows me to bail to a shell command line, but won't let me get beyond its subdirectory. Is there any alternative to Alt-F1 during boot?

I hope this is the right forum for this question. TIA.


W

Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  Fahrvenugen
Date  :  25 Aug, 2006 on 17:46
Okay, I don't know if this will help, but it is worth a try. I'm not familiar with a Dialogic board, but I'll see if I can help.

If the device driver for that board is not Resource Manager aware, you may need to reserve the IO and IRQ stuff for that board, so that nothing else will try and grab those resources. To do this, use the RESERVE.SYS command. There is some more information on reserve.sys at:

http://www.markcrocker.com/rexxtipsntricks/rxtt28.2.0804.html

But here's the quick rundown. Edit your config.sys file (you may need to boot with the ALT-F1 option) and put as your first line in your config.sys file:

BASEDEV=RESERVE.SYS

You'll need some options on the line too. It supports the following - and this information comes from the OS/2 help files (type help reserve.sys at the command prompt):

/IO:n,n - this will reserve an IO port where the first n is the base port number in hex, followed by the length (number of ports) in hex. An example for reserving port 340 would be: /IO:340,4

/MEM:n,n

/MEM:n,n will reserve memory, the first n is the base memory address in hex, with the assumption tha that the address is nnn:2, followed by the length (address number) in hex, separated by a comma. Example: /MEM:CA00,1000

/DMA:n - reserve a DMA channel. Example: /DMA:2

/IRQ:n - reserves an IRQ. Example: /IRQ:5

So, my guess for your card, the reserve line would be something like:

BASEDEV=RESERVE.SYS /MEM:D000,2000 /IRQ:5

That should reserve those addresses for hardware that does not properly cooperate with the resource manager.

As for preventing apps from starting up automatically, from the OS/2 tricks file:

" To prevent applications from restarting during boot, hold down the Ctrl, left Shift, and F1 keys at the same time,
beginning when the mouse pointer appears until the icons begin appearing on the desktop. If you find that disk
activity stops, you may have to release the keys and then quickly hold them down again.
"

I don't know how well this will work, I can't recall if this prevents apps which are started in the STARTUP.CMD file from starting.

Another option is to install a process killer such as Watchcat and see if that can kill the app once it fails. Watchcat installs a driver which allows you to press CTRL-ALT-W when something fails and it will usually activate, and allow you to kill applications, see what is going on, what is hung, etc. It doesn't solve the problem, but may allow you to figure out where the problem is.

http://hobbes.nmsu.edu/cgi-bin/h-search?key=wcat21&pushbutton=Search

Also, RMVIEW will allow you to see what is going on with the resource manager (IO ports, IRQ usage, mem usage, etc.). At a command prompt, type

RMVIEW /?

for an overview of what it can do.

Also, what version and revision of OS/2 are you running? From a command prompt, type:

ver /r

There were a lot of voice mail systems which were built on Warp 3 Connect systems which never had any fixpaks applied, and some of the issues which turned up were fixed by fixpaks. Depending on the situation, it may be worthwhile to install a fixpak.


Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  rudi
Date  :  26 Aug, 2006 on 09:02

ward (25 Aug, 2006 11:42):
I'm thinking perhaps its a memory issue. The board uses 8K shared memory with a base addess of D000h (and 3 other addess options are available). The IRQ=5, and I don't think that is the issue.

I think different. OS/2 does no touch that memory location at all. I'd suggest that you enter the computers's BIOS setup, set IRQ assigment to "manual" (No plug and play OS installed) and force IRQ5 to "Legacy ISA".


Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  RobertM
Date  :  26 Aug, 2006 on 17:36
OS/2 might not touch that memory address, but some old network cards (if memory serves) do. As well as motherboards reserving it for caching. I had a conflict on my system due to such an issue. Check your video BIOS caching in your motherboard's BIOS, as well as for any old network cards that reserve that address for their BIOS as well as the other suggestions you've been given.

HTH
-Robert


Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  ward
Date  :  27 Aug, 2006 on 14:44
I think I'm up a creek without a paddle. I configured the BIOS for a Dialogic D/41D card with IRQ 5 and 8K memory at D000. The board downloaded the firmware successfully, but the board failed to start. I used the BIOS verify feature and it found a conflict at D000. There is a Dialogic technote that says Memory Caching should be diabled. The Compaq Proliant 1600 BIOS shows memory caching is used in that memory range, but there doesn't seem to be a way to disable it. Anybody have any ideas?

---
W

Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  RobertM
Date  :  27 Aug, 2006 on 18:43
Hi,

If you cannot change the memory caching range in the server's BIOS, try to change the address of the card. As I mentioned, it is a very common range to be found on a lot of old servers. One way or another, either the range the server uses or the range the card uses must change. Usually some of or all of those addresses are reconfigurable in the BIOS or the cache is disablable. And if not on your particular server, then you are stuck changing the card's default memory range.

Sorry I cant be of more help...
-Robert


Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  Fahrvenugen
Date  :  28 Aug, 2006 on 00:40
That would be my vote too, change the memory range of the card, often those older ISA cards had jumpers to allow you to do this. Hopefully it is not one of those ISA 'plug 'n' prey' cards... those were always a real pain to get configured. Give me jumpers any day!

Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  ward
Date  :  28 Aug, 2006 on 13:55
The board doesn't give me alot of options...only D000, B000, C000 and A000. I will try, but I think the conflict is all memory below 640K.

---
W

Subject  :  Re:Dialogic Board & Memory Issue - OS/2 v3
Author  :  RobertM
Date  :  28 Aug, 2006 on 19:02
Try A000 or B000...

-Robert


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