Author Topic: my journey back to a functional os/2 system  (Read 342 times)

Jim Hughes

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my journey back to a functional os/2 system
« on: June 05, 2017, 04:26:07 am »
Hello Everyone

Background:
Firstly, being Canadian I must apologize; to the purists out there, if I get the jargon/terminology wrong; too many past lives and I can't necessarily be bothered to to keep everything straight. A shovel is still a shovel, whether called a scuttle, a
spade or a goon-spoon; unless the word has been used as the basis for an acronym where it becomes anyone's guess.

I started using os/2 with Warp 3 (red?) add your own Windows and several fists-full of floppies (they formatted nicely and were re-purposed)), and then on through Warp 3 (blue?) on CD, Warp Connect, Warp 4, and eCS 1.0 -> eCS 2.2b. Most installations were
on salvaged/castoff used hardware. I'm a HOME user/hobbyist, late 60s, and only know enough about programming etc. to be extremely dangerous.The same with Networking.  I had eCS 2.1 & 2.2b on another, holding, machine but they were beyond unstable and virtually unusable, I did manage to update them to the ArcaNoae drivers and package manager.

I am an unrepentant "lurker" on some of the various sites and forums, from back, at least, to Dr. Terrel's OS/2 Site.
Generally, joining in only when I think I mght have something to possibly add to the knowledge of the Collective. There are many wiser and more knowledgeable than me; whose, over the years, unknowing Mentor-ship I've valued and appreciated beyond words, thank you all! When possible I've tried to support the os/2 Community eve though I've been mostly stuck in a windows world.

Now on to ArcaNoae's ARCAOS5.

The Victim:

- Asus M5A97_LE_R20 (2013 vintage) w/ AMD FX-8350 (8 core) 4g CPU, 8g RAM;
             http://www.asus.com/ca-en/Motherboards/M5A97_LE_R20/
             http://www.asus.com/ca-en/Motherboards/M5A97_LE_R20/HelpDesk/
   BIOS is as purchased (not updated); with EUFI changed to CSM (Legacy) and all disk controllers switched to AHCI (see BIOS screen shots)
  • - Asus EAH-3450(ATI/AMD HD_3450) video;
  • - Realtek on-board audio (currently turned off) and replaced by SB-Audigy-Z2;
  • - on-board Realtek LAN;
  • - 6 x on-board SATA connectors, attached are CD/DVD drive, a 4 bay 2.5" drive cage, plus 1 as eSATA; and
  • - Startech (PEXMSATA3431) SATA controller card w/ mSATA SSD slot (empty) and 3 AHCI SATA III (6Gbps) ports through PCI Expressx2  [in  the 2nd PCIEXx16 slot], and running as JBOD not RAID with a 2x2.5" front opening drive tray connected;
  • - PS/2 and USB keyboard/mouse connectors;
  • - on-board USB is mostly USB 3, but with USB 2 pass-through ?xUHCD & ?xEHCD ; allowing the attachment of a USB floppy drive and an external USB CD/DVD drive via the KVM USB connection; and
  • -  4 port KVM carrying both DVI & VGA, USB keyboard/mouse, 2 switched USB other stuff ports.
  • - displays 2 x 4k monitors,
This is all in a full height desktop (home theatre type) case, with front access to up to six 2.5" drive trays and 4 USB-2
ports. I've built this system up over time, as resources became available, as a general test-bed, and to be my os/2 machine and
anticipating it to probably be my last desktop machine.

Installation:
1. As write this I don't have the computer in front of me so I'm relying on "old timers" memory so things may be out of order
or not be worded correctly;

2. was onto a os/2 dedicated 64g ssd, Partitioned with DFSee (geo 64 hds 32 sec) with DFSees's IBM Boot Manager installed first
on the front of the drive. [note: with any empty drive I'm partitioning, I always install DFSees's IBM Boot Manager active or
not as the first partition, it keeps the subsequent partitions aligned, if for no other reason.
 
3.CD start-up, I chose:
-"Boot with own values" and from the pre-installer boot accepted all defaults (ACHI, etc.), except I reserved drv W, enabled the disk integrity check, changed the USB devices to 6 and made sure the USB floppy & CD (bootable) were enabled.

4. Actual Installer
  • -time zone west coast N America
  • -single partition
  • -Advanced/Custom install;
  • -Hardware page(s) accepted the default driver selections (ACHI, Uniaudio, etc.), video i've used both Panorama and Snap, added Comm port;
  • -Software page(s) accepted the defaults, added Seamonkey as default browser; and
  • -Network page(s) chose DCHP, accepted the defaults (MMRE driver), TCP\IP, added NET BIOS.
Once I figured out the what, where, and why of the installer and myself, the installs went relatively quickly and smoothly. I ended up with what seems to be a solid base for the system:
  • - displays work currently 1920x1440 with some random artifacts on the DVI connected screen;
  • - internet works (at least FF connects to Google which find OS2world and takes me there);
  • - I can connect to my NAS through the ArcaMappermanager;
  • - all six drive bays are usable; and
  • - USB flash drives are readable and so are external USB drive enclosures (within the limitations of os/2) using USB2 or 3 cables as dictated by the enclosure's female port (e.g. the Transend(m3)ssd is in an external enclosure with a USB3 connection).
5. Gotchas (maybe from operator error/stupidity), or that nothing has been tweaked, the contents of "config.sys", etc. are as
installed:
  • - In my case, the installer "reboot" button is non-functional and has to be allowed to count down, hastening the process with a C-A-D push results in a faulty installation with a bunch of stuff left out (e.g. screen objects with nothing in them);
  • - In my case, the installer doesn't clear the "installable" flag on the partition. I believe one result of this was messages from the BIOS along the lines of "Unable to find(boot?) disk 1" a couple of "enters" may put things back on track and the system boots directly through to the installation partition and the install continues (had one time where the BIOS picked the wrong partition from IBM bt mgr and confused the hell out of me). I suggest DFsee is your friend and from another instance check and edit the LVM information as needed, including, maybe, temporarily removing other partitions from the "Boot Menu"(which I didn't do). I've also found that, on a re-boot, the ASUS Bios does the same "Unable to find(boot?) disk 1" thingif I've forgotten to remove a USB flash drive.
  • - under Panorama video it takes minutes to build and populate the desktop, while under Snap it is seconds;
  • - no sound yet
  • - USB keyboard/mouse don't work through the KVM or front USB ports, I suspect that is because the front ports are through a hub and the KVM definitely is a hub. I have yet to try a direct connection to the dedicated USB keyboard/mouse ports on back, installation was through the PS/2 connections;
If Life in general allows me computing time, I should soon be back in the os/2 world with what seems to be stablity and a base that I can build a fully functioning system on.

Thank you ArcaNoae, your Associates, Collaborators, Developers, Testors, and the others handling the minutia of other tasks involved in putting a project like this together.

Regards and best wishes to ALL
Jim Hughes

ps: because of posting size limitations the BIOS screen shots will be in a subsequent post or 2 as zip files



Jim Hughes

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as promised Bios screen shots 1st half

Jim Hughes

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as promised 2nd half of the bios screen shots

Jim Hughes

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Re: my journey back to a functional os/2 system an additional screenshot
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2017, 04:47:16 am »
Sorry about the number of posts but as I said I don't post much, especially attachments There is only one SNAP based shot the other two are Panorama


Regards
Jim

Doug Bissett

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Re: my journey back to a functional os/2 system
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2017, 05:11:16 am »
Hi Jim. I don't have time to go through this in detail, but i get the impression that your system is similar to my Asus A88XM-A system. Mine works quite well, but I will make a couple of comments.

About using SNAP or Panorama. Panorama is preferred, unless SNAP will run the video in accelerated mode. That probably means video that is 20, or more, years old. SNAP will install to 1024x768, no matter what the video system is capable of., but you can change it using the selections shown, or by using the SNAP tools.

Bottom line: Use Panorama on any modern machine, at least until Arca Noae has a chance to make some serious changes to SNAP.

I also notice that you have an 8 core processor. I am not sure where multiple CPU support stands. I know that 4 cores work, but there have been problems with more than 4. in the past. Try limiting it to 4 cores, until you get it going.

Quote
on-board USB is mostly USB 3, but with USB 2 pass-through ?xUHCD & ?xEHCD

That probably requires a USB 3.x driver, which we do not have, yet. I don't know if disabling USB 3.x actually causes the devices to work in USB 2.0 mode, with a USB 2.0 driver. That doesn't work on my Lenovo ThinkPad L530 (Intel).

Quote
4 port KVM carrying both DVI & VGA, USB keyboard/mouse, 2 switched USB other stuff ports.

I  am not really familiar with KVM switches, but some devices have caused problems for some users, in the past. Try direct connections, until you get it working.