OS2 World Community Forum

OS/2, eCS & ArcaOS - Technical => Hardware => Topic started by: Daniele on February 11, 2021, 03:31:43 pm

Title: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 11, 2021, 03:31:43 pm
Hello,
I have some old industrial tools that has Pc with OS/2 warp 4 with a multiple serials ISA board interfaced with a 8 rs232 hub. I need to replace it with a windows7 pc host with virtualbox and OS/2 guest. The VHD clone of the original HD works, but I cannot manage more than 4 COM ports (limit of emulation softwares).
I see boards PCIe or serial hub with USB connection, but none has Os/2 drivers.
Does someone know a solution of this ?
Thanks
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 11, 2021, 03:42:42 pm
I worked extensively with this problem at several industrial sites. There is no reasonable solution. You must have OS/2 on bare metal to work with more than four serial ports.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 11, 2021, 03:56:02 pm
What does it mean OS/2 on bare metal?
Means that OS/2 cannot be virtualized if needs more than four serials?
Sorry I’m Italian...
Thanks
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 11, 2021, 06:01:19 pm
Hi Daniele,

Having worked for many years with OS/2 controlled machine tools all I can say is that you need an OS/2 computer to run most of the programs and connect to the machinery - virtualized will not work if you need more than the standard number of ports i.e. Com1 to Com4.

That usually means a very careful look at what is available in the way of components that will allow you to assemble a computer that will do what you want.  You shouldn't need to look for the necessary OS/2 drivers if you are moving from a working OS/2 system because they will be already installed.

In the past we were able to update the base computer with a new version of OS/2 and then copy the necessary drivers to it with the control program and after a few adjustments the equipment was back in operation - it can get much more complicated when the main control program is on a server connected to several slave machines.

 
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 11, 2021, 08:40:36 pm
Hi Daniele

I would love too know more about the industrial machine that you are using with OS/2. I want to document the industrial solutions on the OS2World wiki (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/OS/2_Related_Industrial_Machinery). Type of machinery, Machine models and even pictures are welcome.

About a reply to your question, I also think it may be hard to virtualize OS/2 with 8 COM ports, but you may check some other VirtualBox forum  (https://forums.virtualbox.org/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=85696)when they play with the idea of adding Serial USB adapters. But it will require a lot of experimentation from your side.

It may be interesting to try ArcaOS on that type of machinery (with real hardware) and remain using the OS/2 software with the 8 serial ports. I think that for the kind of industrial business they run, a license of ArcaOS business will not be that much.

My only advice is to please, save a copy of the OS/2 HDD image while you experiment, some of the OS/2 software and drivers it has may be hard to find. It may be good to have some different hard drives on that machine to experiment.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 11, 2021, 09:34:49 pm
Hi Martin,
The tools It’s for semiconductor industries, produced in 90’s by Gasonics.
https://images.app.goo.gl/jqKjd7zR9uZ6Pkst6
It have 3 pc, one cluster and two process chamber.
Unfortunately we don’t have installation floppies or cds od OS/2 so the only solution I have is to clone the HDs and try to run it on new pc.
The VHD clone works very well in Virtualbox, but I cannot test on a tool until I can have 8 COM ports.
Other problem may be the communication between the 3 pc via internal network. I think erhernet...
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 11, 2021, 10:29:35 pm
Hi Daniele,

You have it easy because the 3 PCs are using Warp 4 which means everything should run on a new computer, for example I have Warp 4 running on a MSI A320M Pro-VD Plus motherboard with an AMD Ryzen 3 2200G CPU with built in graphics without any problems (if you wanted to use the latest third generation Ryzen processors you would need ArcaOS).

Could you copy the OS/2 config.sys and attach it to one of your posts here so I can get some idea of what drivers you are using.  I will also look up some 8 com port PCIe cards to give you some idea of what is possible (what you are trying to do is very similar to what we did except we interfaced to engineering machine tools).
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Roderick Klein on February 11, 2021, 11:22:43 pm
Hi Martin,
The tools It’s for semiconductor industries, produced in 90’s by Gasonics.
https://images.app.goo.gl/jqKjd7zR9uZ6Pkst6
It have 3 pc, one cluster and two process chamber.
Unfortunately we don’t have installation floppies or cds od OS/2 so the only solution I have is to clone the HDs and try to run it on new pc.
The VHD clone works very well in Virtualbox, but I cannot test on a tool until I can have 8 COM ports.
Other problem may be the communication between the 3 pc via internal network. I think erhernet...
Regards

If you want to migrate to new hardware it is indeed a good idea to clone the hard disc before the discs fall over.
You can use DFsee for this www.dfsee.com. You can hook up the disc from the OS/2 system with a USB PATA adapter on a Windows machine and clone the disc.

I have seen more people who want to clone an OS/2 to new hardware. But I found it easier simply copying the directories with the application to  new OS/2/ArcaOS system and modidy the config.sys as needed. Takes some trial and, but real cook book how to do it, just try.

Check libpath, path etc and any set statements. Especially check for entries in the config.sys that contain the directory in which the software is installed.

Roderick Klein
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 12, 2021, 12:17:28 am
Hi Daniele.

For what I understand, on this industrial machine,  you have three PCs with OS/2 Warp 4, with network connection (ethernet), and 8 serial ports on each machine and these 8 serial ports are connected to the PCs with ISA cards.

I think it will be hard to VBox to emulate the 8 COM serial ports.

Backup everything. Clone the hard drives of each three machines.  (Possible you already did that).

It will be interesting to know why you want to have OS/2 virtualized there over Windows. Is there some functionality that you don't know how to use on OS/2, like using USB flash drives to extract files or VNC for remote control? Or is it that you are missing the OS/2 installer CDs? or is it that OS/2 is different to install?

Possible solutions with bare metal (real hardware) are:

1) OS/2 Warp 4.52. Since it seems you didn't upgrade any of the PCs to newer maiboards (you have that old ISA cards that you need for the 8 serial ports).  You can install OS/2 Warp 4.52 from the CD-ROM, get USB support (maybe for a flash drive), and copy the required software for this machine from the clones Warp 4.

OS/2 Warp 4.52 will save you some time with all the fixpacks for Warp 4.

2) Buy ArcaOS and it will save you also too much trouble with the OS/2 Warp installation process and it will install more actual tools and drivers (network). Since it is the same OS/2 kernel is almost sure that every driver and software will run. To install ArcaOS you need a DVD drive, or the capacity to boot from the USB port.

It would be very awesome if you can share the config.sys file (upload it as config.txt) too see if there is any special driver or specific thing for that machine we can point out.

I would love to be in Italy to check out that machine !!!! ;D

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 12, 2021, 04:37:22 am
I rebuilt a Gasonics Plasma Etch Processor in 2013. They are picky about network cards.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 12, 2021, 12:40:56 pm
I rebuilt a Gasonics Plasma Etch Processor in 2013. They are picky about network cards.

Interesting !!!
Do you still have list of hardware you used?
Thanks
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 12, 2021, 12:47:03 pm
Hi Daniele.

For what I understand, on this industrial machine,  you have three PCs with OS/2 Warp 4, with network connection (ethernet), and 8 serial ports on each machine and these 8 serial ports are connected to the PCs with ISA cards.

I think it will be hard to VBox to emulate the 8 COM serial ports.

Backup everything. Clone the hard drives of each three machines.  (Possible you already did that).

It will be interesting to know why you want to have OS/2 virtualized there over Windows. Is there some functionality that you don't know how to use on OS/2, like using USB flash drives to extract files or VNC for remote control? Or is it that you are missing the OS/2 installer CDs? or is it that OS/2 is different to install?

Possible solutions with bare metal (real hardware) are:

1) OS/2 Warp 4.52. Since it seems you didn't upgrade any of the PCs to newer maiboards (you have that old ISA cards that you need for the 8 serial ports).  You can install OS/2 Warp 4.52 from the CD-ROM, get USB support (maybe for a flash drive), and copy the required software for this machine from the clones Warp 4.

OS/2 Warp 4.52 will save you some time with all the fixpacks for Warp 4.

2) Buy ArcaOS and it will save you also too much trouble with the OS/2 Warp installation process and it will install more actual tools and drivers (network). Since it is the same OS/2 kernel is almost sure that every driver and software will run. To install ArcaOS you need a DVD drive, or the capacity to boot from the USB port.

It would be very awesome if you can share the config.sys file (upload it as config.txt) too see if there is any special driver or specific thing for that machine we can point out.

I would love to be in Italy to check out that machine !!!! ;D

Regards


I’m trying to virtualized OS/2 because I have many old office PCs for free from our IT service and for me should be free this way...
But for shure I can buy new hardware and make a new bare metal 😉.
We don’t have installation Cd because in past we bought HD already configured for our tools when ee need to replace it.
How can I export CONFIG.SYS fron the virtual machine?
I have access only to VM now...

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 12, 2021, 01:38:49 pm
I done it !!!

Here the CONFIG file...

Thanks

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 12, 2021, 02:54:14 pm
Hi Daniele,

The Config.sys shows that the original OS/2 was just a standard install of the early Warp 4, including voice type and setup for a US keyboard.  The only strange thing is that it is setup to boot and run from the D: partition which indicates it might have been a dual boot setup for some reason.

Now you say you van get 'retired' computers from the IT department.  If those computers were running Win 7 then they will run OS/2 without problems.  Depending on how you have the disk image of OS/2 that you built the virtual disk image from you might be able to copy that image to the hard disk of one of the computers and it could run without problems other than changing drive letters in config.sys.  It is also possible to 'find' an ISO* of Warp  4 on the net, which might make things easier for you.

Let us know what sort of hardware you have available and the what form you have the master disk image then we can, hopefully, point you in the right direction.

The only real problem for you is going to be the cost of 8 port com add in cards - they are not cheap, the last ones we got were almost 200 euro each for PCIe ones.


*  https://winworldpc.com/library/operating-systems (https://winworldpc.com/library/operating-systems)

EDIT to clean up typos.


Something else I just noted, there doesn't appear to be anything to run more than the normal 2 com ports, not even com3 and com4.  Are these controlled by the equipment program?
 
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 12, 2021, 03:47:14 pm
I rebuilt a Gasonics Plasma Etch Processor in 2013. They are picky about network cards.

Interesting !!!
Do you still have list of hardware you used?
Thanks

The only thing that's required is that you MUST use 3com network cards. The rest you are asking is because of OS/2. You'll save a lot by going to ArcaOS.

The 3Com network card requirement is interesting. Most people who think they know NetBIOS don't really know that much about atomic message transfer. It's in the IBM help, though. They only say that implementation is up to the network card manufacturer.

I think a simulation of the 3com card might work. But if the VM simulates something else, you can stop using that VM.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 12, 2021, 05:34:42 pm
Hi Daniele,

The Config.sys shows that the original OS/2 was just a standard install of the early Warp 4, including voice type and setup for a US keyboard.  The only strange thing is that it is setup to boot and run from the D: partition which indicates it might have been a dual boot setup for some reason.

Now you say you van get 'retired' computers from the IT department.  If those computers were running Win 7 then they will run OS/2 without problems.  Depending on how you have the disk image of OS/2 that you built the virtual disk image from you might be able to copy that image to the hard disk of one of the computers and it could run without problems other than changing drive letters in config.sys.  It is also possible to 'find' an ISO* of Warp  4 on the net, which might make things easier for you.

Let us know what sort of hardware you have available and the what form you have the master disk image then we can, hopefully, point you in the right direction.

The only real problem for you is going to be the cost of 8 port com add in cards - they are not cheap, the last ones we got were almost 200 euro each for PCIe ones.


*  https://winworldpc.com/library/operating-systems (https://winworldpc.com/library/operating-systems)

EDIT to clean up typos.


Something else I just noted, there doesn't appear to be anything to run more than the normal 2 com ports, not even com3 and com4.  Are these controlled by the equipment program?
 

I Ivan,
The original controller HD has a DOS partition in C: and OS/2 in D:.
The PCs I can have from IT department are HP Compaq 8000 elite that has intel i2 dual core and Win7, 2 or 4 GB ram.
We have an hardware cloner so I can take original HD and clone it on a new SATA without problem.
I didn’t try this way because I think it cannot works 😣 so I try VM.
Maybe COM ports are managed by machine software, when I try to start utility of controllers connected to COM5 to COM8 it returns me an error that can’t find the ports.

Regards

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 12, 2021, 05:54:50 pm
Moving to a newer machine will mean having to update some drivers first, in particular Warp V4 only supported 4.3 GB hard drives IIRC, so you will need a newer IBMS506.ADD or better, switch to Dani's version. Other then that, it should boot up, perhaps with complaints on the boot assuming the new computer has the keyboard and mouse plugged into PS2 ports. It won't have any USB support without adding it, so USB keyboards etc won't be seen.
Actually, thinking about it, not sure if the kernel will be happy with such a new CPU or the 2GB+ memory if you have never upgraded by applying fixpaks. In which your choices are to apply fixpak 15 (last free one) along with other fixes, which would upgrade your install to Warp 4.5 or getting a newer version, a convenience pack from Winworld or such or purchasing ArcaOS, which is an OEM version of OS/2 with a lot of updates.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 12, 2021, 07:34:39 pm
Hi

For what I see on the config.sys, I don't recognize this two folders, D:\NSC\DLL and D:\PEP\DLL. I guess those are the one with the specialized application for the machine.

The "D:\IBMI18N" is supposed to be the older "IBM I18N Toolkit" (international localization). Can it be possible that the specialized software has a dependency of that toolkit version?

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 12, 2021, 08:08:16 pm
The "D:\IBMI18N" is supposed to be the older "IBM I18N Toolkit" (international localization). Can it be possible that the specialized software has a dependency of that toolkit version?


If it does, it is easy enough to use ENDLIBPATH to pull in the DLLs. It is how I run the old webexplorer and gopher clients on ArcaOS, using the IBMI18N install on a Warp V4 partition.
Does show the old partition needs to be left around if upgrading to ArcaOS or such.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 13, 2021, 01:26:13 am
Hi

The "D:\IBMI18N" is supposed to be the older "IBM I18N Toolkit" (international localization). Can it be possible that the specialized software has a dependency of that toolkit version?

Regards

The software does not depend on internationalization. The applications was build with CSet++ and Borland C++ under Warp 3.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 13, 2021, 11:57:10 am
It is not surprising that there is so much 'odd' material listed in the config.sys because it appears to be a complete install of a very early version of Warp 4 including much of the bonus pak.

Should be very easy to apply the last fix pak and convert to SMP  for the HP computers.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 13, 2021, 06:50:08 pm
I never could get my Warp V4 install to run for more then a minute in SMP mode.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 14, 2021, 07:12:02 am
So guys,
Monday I hope to find some time to try to clone an HD of one machine and run it on HP desktop.
If it works next step is to find a multiple serials pcie board that can workunder OS/2 and a 3com ethernet board....
Where I can find fixpack you tell? Is better to install in any case?
Thanks
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 14, 2021, 07:24:36 am
Here's one place to start http://web.archive.org/web/20060926004818/www.warpupdates.mynetcologne.de/english/site_contents.html (http://web.archive.org/web/20060926004818/www.warpupdates.mynetcologne.de/english/site_contents.html). A lot of dead links but file names to Google. For Warp V4, IBM should still have them on its FTP. http://web.archive.org/web/20060926005938/http://www.warpupdates.mynetcologne.de/english/base_fixpak40.html (http://web.archive.org/web/20060926005938/http://www.warpupdates.mynetcologne.de/english/base_fixpak40.html)

Your are going to need FP15, which will update you to Warp v4.5, the device driver FP2, which will update stuff like the disk controller to handle large HD's. Probably a newer kernel and possibly more.
Finding a Convenience Pack 2 ISO image might be simpler, that is Warp v4.52 and would be more SMP safe if you care about using multiple cores. Likely unneeded for your use.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 14, 2021, 10:39:14 pm
For fix pak download and update kernels just look in the IBM FTP site as follows:

ftp://service.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/fixes/v4warp/english-us/xr_m015/

ftp://service.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/fixes/v4.5warp/english-us/xr_e003/ 

ftp://service.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/fixes/update-kernels/

The big problem might be the need for a lot of floppies - there is a way round that and I will look up the ISO of the CD I made to allow running from CD.  If you need that let me know and I will see if I can post it somewhere.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 15, 2021, 05:22:06 pm
Hi all,
I try to run a clone on the HP Compaq, but after the Os/2 logo screen appear this...

c0000005
DOSCALL1.DLL 0002:0000a455
P1=00000001  P2=00000004  P3=XXXXXXXX  P4=XXXXXXXX
EAX=000300d2  EBX=00000000  ECX=0003000c2  EDX=bfeb5213
ESI=00000100  EDI=fe7f43ec
DS=0053  DSACC=d0f3  DSLIM=3fffffff
ES=0053  ESACC=d0f3  ESLIM=3fffffff
FS=150b  FSACC=00f3  FSLIM=00000030
GS=0000  GSACC=****  GSLIM=********
CS:EIP=005b:1c02a455  CSACC=d0df  CSLIM=3fffffff
SS:ESP=0053:000300b2. SSACC=d0f3  SSLIM=3fffffff
EBP=000300da  FLG=00213202

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 15, 2021, 09:01:34 pm
Hi Daniele,

All that is saying is that you need to apply the fix paks to the OS/2 install before you try to run it on the HP.

Depending on how you have the clone will depend how you do it.  If you have a disk image you should be able to install that on VBox and update it there then take that image and clone it , then try it on the HP.

If you have one of the old computers you might be able to update OS/2 on that computer (make a disk image first in case of problems).  If that works transfer the new image to the HP ans see if it works.

No matter what you do there will be some adjustments needed for it to work easily on the HP.

I understand this is your first time installing OS/2 so don't be afraid to ask questions, there are several of us that have been using OS/2 since version 2.1 and we will hopefully know most of the answers.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 15, 2021, 10:03:01 pm
Thanks Ivan,
as you suppose it's my first time :).
Today I download the Daniela's patch for fix the problem with the memory size >64Mb, but I'm not able to run the patch.
I think it only works under OS/2, but my OS/2 doesn't start.
I have a Perfect clone of the machine HD mounted on HP Pc.
I can run Windows 7 as primary HD and see the OS/2 HD as secondary and navigate into directory.
I prefer don't touch the machine and I don't have an old pc not mounted in a tool.

Thanks for your support, I believe we will do it !!!

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 16, 2021, 12:35:05 am
Hi Daniele,

I have just downloaded the service manual for the HP which I will read in the morning and then see if I can produce a bootable CD for OS/2 that has all the updates included.  I think I have everything needed even if I do have to load some hard disks via USB to get what is needed.  Once I have that I will make an ISO and upload it to the large file storage of my ISP and send you the information on where to download it from.

If we didn't have all the travel restrictions I would drive over the border and help you but I understand the restrictions are just as bad where you are.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 16, 2021, 09:17:04 am
Great news Ivan !!!  :)
I love to learn every day new things.
My job is Equipment Engineer, this activity on Os/2 is an extra for improove the machines, so the time I can dedicate is very small.
I really appreciate your help, all I can do now is promise you pizza and beer here in Italy when coronavirus wiil end 😁😁😁.

Regards
Daniele
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 16, 2021, 02:32:58 pm
OK, I have read the HP Technical reference guide for your computers and started to assemble an equivalent computer here - main difference is it will have an AMD processor.

When that is complete I will check the bootable CD to see that it installs without too many problems before I convert it to an ISO file for you.  Will also check and see if there is the 3Com ethernet card driver included.

May take a couple of days before I am satisfied with the CD - also have to fit in all the other things that crop up (when you retire you seem to work harder than you ever did or maybe it is being 80 odd years old and you slow down  ;) )

It is good to find more lady real engineers - they are few and hard to find.  Keep up the good work and always ask 'why'.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 16, 2021, 03:09:14 pm
It is good to find more lady real engineers - they are few and hard to find.  Keep up the good work and always ask 'why'.

Daniele in Italy is a man's name  ;D. It's Daniel in English  ;D
I hope you are helping me not only because you think I'm a lady  ;D ;D ;D
Otherwise many thanks again for gift to this activity your precious time, I love to know your still work with passion at your age ;).

Regards

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 16, 2021, 04:04:27 pm
Hi Daniele

Sorry for keep insisting, but it may be good if you can give it a try installing OS/2 Warp 4.52 on some spare HDD and connect it to the machine. OS/2 Warp 4.52 has a boot CD and the install CD and it will save you a lot of time of all the fixpacks that need to be installed on Warp 4.0.  I know that the machine may be originally intended for Warp 4, but I'm almost sure there will be no issues.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 16, 2021, 04:18:09 pm
Opps, Sorry I put my foot in it - I should have known, after all I've been in France for over 25 years.  I hope you are not offended,

The reason I am helping is because you are someone willing to learn about OS/2.  In the past I employed 3 lady engineers with the 6 male engineers and think that being an engineer depends on ability and not gender.

As I got older I realised that the universities were producing engineers that were reasonable on theory but useless on the practical and when they encountered a problem they never asked 'why' so I tried to help by teaching those interested what I had learned over the years - even got paid for it by several companies - eventually it becomes a way of life that is hard to put down when you retire.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 16, 2021, 08:35:09 pm
Hi Daniele

Sorry for keep insisting, but it may be good if you can give it a try installing OS/2 Warp 4.52 on some spare HDD and connect it to the machine. OS/2 Warp 4.52 has a boot CD and the install CD and it will save you a lot of time of all the fixpacks that need to be installed on Warp 4.0.  I know that the machine may be originally intended for Warp 4, but I'm almost sure there will be no issues.

Regards

Hi,
I understand your reason for keep insisting, but I don't have install CD of OS/2 Warp 4 or 4.52 and I don't know if it's legal, expecially for industry use, download it from the net.
For me is better to have a working clone of the original machine hd, so I don't need to reinstall and re-configure the machine software. It safe me many hours of machine out of production if I can change the pc controller with one already configured.
But of course, if download OS/2 warp 4.52 it's legal I could consider also this way ;).

Thanks
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 16, 2021, 09:20:03 pm
I don't know about Warp 4.52 but Warp 4 should be legat after all IBM gave copies away as the cover CD on a computer magazine in 1997 or 1998, I can't remember the exact date - in fact, it was that CD I used to create my first bootable CD, one not using floppies to start the install,  It will also be the base from which I will build a version with all the fix paks that should run on your HP computers.

One thing you need to do is copy all the controller software for your machinne to a safe place (look for any install logs that might tell if any DLLs were copied to D:\os2\dll and copy those as well - that is unless you have installable copies of that software.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 16, 2021, 09:32:58 pm
Hi Danielle

I'm just curious to know which "8 Port card" does the PC connected to the industrial machine uses.
If you can share some pictures, that would be great too.

I was thinking (crazy thinking) what should be required to replace all the PC hardware for a modern one (in case it is necessary). I was checking on amazon some modern 8 port serial card, (like this (https://www.amazon.com/-/es/PEX8S1050/dp/B08H2GYQDJ)), but I have no reports of this kind of card running on ArcaOS or OS/2.

I was also checking some other industrial device that uses OS/2 with a huge ISA "IBM ARTIC1868-Port Adapter (http://web.archive.org/web/20161230200126/http://greyghost.mooo.com/pccbbs/communications/gq9base.pdf)".

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 16, 2021, 09:41:25 pm
Hi Martin,
the board is a
DIGIBOARD AN 30001754.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 17, 2021, 04:32:34 am
Hi Daniele

Sorry for keep insisting, but it may be good if you can give it a try installing OS/2 Warp 4.52 on some spare HDD and connect it to the machine. OS/2 Warp 4.52 has a boot CD and the install CD and it will save you a lot of time of all the fixpacks that need to be installed on Warp 4.0.  I know that the machine may be originally intended for Warp 4, but I'm almost sure there will be no issues.

Regards

Hi,
I understand your reason for keep insisting, but I don't have install CD of OS/2 Warp 4 or 4.52 and I don't know if it's legal, expecially for industry use, download it from the net.
For me is better to have a working clone of the original machine hd, so I don't need to reinstall and re-configure the machine software. It safe me many hours of machine out of production if I can change the pc controller with one already configured.
But of course, if download OS/2 warp 4.52 it's legal I could consider also this way ;).

Thanks
Regards

You already have three legal licenses for IBM OS/2. You can legally reinstall from Warp 4 media and try to patch your way to a running system.

OS/2 is not freeware. IBM has a contract with Arca Noae. OS/2 users can buy a legal copy of ArcaOS.

Another consideration is that ArcaOS would be a simple install on the old machines you have available. Networking is pretty easy to configure on ArcaOS, so it should be pretty easy to copy the files over, and get the Gasonics software running.

I was wondering about using an old office machine in a clean room? Is that really OK?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 17, 2021, 09:03:14 am
Hi,
I can patch my Warp4 or I can also install Warp4.52 if I find it for download?
The pcs are on the back of the tools in grey area, but also the original pc are simple pc...
Just clean well the office pc before get it into clean room 😉.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Andreas Schnellbacher on February 17, 2021, 12:58:16 pm
Does the application really run on OS/2 or it's just a DOS app?

I haven't found anything special in the CONFIG.SYS. The only additions seem the be
Code: [Select]
LIBPATH=...D:\PEP\DLL;
RUN=D:\OS2\SYSTEM\HYBERSET.EXE
Or is this caused by the installed bonupak apps?

At least the OS/2 driver for the Digi AccelePort Digiboard ISA card should have an entry there, I guess. A DOS driver exists for this card and DOS accesses the card independent of the host OS. The same applies for a 3Com 509 ISA network card.

I had for multiple years a PDP-11 emulation with an ISA Osprey CPU board and DOS software, an ISA Digiboard and an ISA 3Com 509 nic running, first under W95, then under eCS. I'm happy that the emulation on the current system has moved almost completely to software. Also the multiple serial ports (we could drop that down from 16 avaliable to 8, with 5 ones in use) have a driver for the host OS (unfortunately W7), but for the 4 data buses we had to use special hardware from Startech, because of timing issues with others.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 17, 2021, 03:48:32 pm
Does the application really run on OS/2 or it's just a DOS app?

It's OS/2, compiled with Borland C++ and IBM CSet++.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 17, 2021, 05:26:14 pm
Hi Danielle

I wrote this little page with the information you let us know.
- Novellus Gasonics PEP Iridia DL Plasma Asher (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/Novellus_Gasonics_PEP_Iridia_DL_Plasma_Asher)

Can it be possible for you to take some pictures of the OS/2 software, so I can also include it to the gallery? What is the name of the software it uses?

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 17, 2021, 05:51:47 pm
Does the application really run on OS/2 or it's just a DOS app?

I haven't found anything special in the CONFIG.SYS. The only additions seem the be
Code: [Select]
LIBPATH=...D:\PEP\DLL;
RUN=D:\OS2\SYSTEM\HYBERSET.EXE
Or is this caused by the installed bonupak apps?

IIRC, HYBERSET is for the trap door where you could suspend OS/2 and run a pure DOS session.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Andreas Schnellbacher on February 17, 2021, 06:05:21 pm
IIRC, HYBERSET is for the trap door where you could suspend OS/2 and run a pure DOS session.
Thanks.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Andreas Schnellbacher on February 17, 2021, 06:08:16 pm
It's OS/2, compiled with Borland C++ and IBM CSet++.
Good to know, that eases the situation, thanks. A question:

Should ISA card drivers appear in CONFIG.SYS? (I have no experience with the OS/2 drivers from Digi, just with the DOS drivers.)

Notes about ISA slots: The Digi board may be replaced by the PCI variant or any other product with OS/2 drivers, while I don't remember if there exist OS/2 drivers for the PCI one. I guess that the 3COM NIC may also be replaced by any other NIC with OS/2 drivers. It's hard to get a mainboard with 2 ISA slots nowadays. IIRC the maximum is 1 ISA slot, unless old hardware is used. Virtualization is impossible, as Ivan has already stated, due to the multiple serial ports.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 17, 2021, 07:31:57 pm
It's OS/2, compiled with Borland C++ and IBM CSet++.
Good to know, that eases the situation, thanks. A question:

Should ISA card drivers appear in CONFIG.SYS? (I have no experience with the OS/2 drivers from Digi, just with the DOS drivers.)

It may depend on the ISA card, that one Martin posted used jumpers but did have a device driver. I know my old ISA PAS sound card needed a driver, but that might have mostly been to set the IRQ and DMA up and IIRC, the same config.sys entry covered both OS/2 and DOS sessions.
Looking at the documentation for com.sys, it seems to be limited to 4 ports, so I'd assume the need for a driver or possibly a different com.sys
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 18, 2021, 09:44:06 am
For fix pak download and update kernels just look in the IBM FTP site as follows:

ftp://service.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/fixes/v4warp/english-us/xr_m015/

ftp://service.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/fixes/v4.5warp/english-us/xr_e003/ 

ftp://service.software.ibm.com/ps/products/os2/fixes/update-kernels/

The big problem might be the need for a lot of floppies - there is a way round that and I will look up the ISO of the CD I made to allow running from CD.  If you need that let me know and I will see if I can post it somewhere.

Hi Ivan,
I was able to download all this files today, but I'm not sure what to do with these.... :)
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Ian Manners on February 18, 2021, 11:21:19 am
Fixpacks

http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/warp4/fixpack15/ (http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/warp4/fixpack15/)
You can try fp15.zip from Aaron Lawrence or..

If you look in the 'zip/ directories there is a install.txt file that will show you how to 'Installing this fixpack the os2serv way.' such as the one in http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/warp4/fixpack15/zip/ (http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/warp4/fixpack15/zip/)

xr_e003 is the WSeB Fixpack 3.
http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/wseb/fixpack3/zip/ (http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/wseb/fixpack3/zip/)

Device driver pack 2 (device driver updates not included in Fixpacks)
http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/ddpack2/ (http://www.os2site.com/sw/upgrades/ddpack2/)

See the readme files.

ADDED: Always backup..
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 18, 2021, 11:32:29 am
About the device driver fixpaks, originally fixpaks included device drivers but as they got bigger, IBM decided to split them off. You need the device driver fixpak for things like recognizing a large hard drive.
You might want to install the first driver fixpak first as it included support for USB. IBM removed the support and made it subscription only for fixpak 2 of the device drivers.
There are later subscription only fixpak's floating around, you probably don't need them. Kernel should be updated though.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 18, 2021, 11:33:45 am
Hi Daniele,

I'm down at the hospital today - checkup time for my heart - and trying tu use my tablet is slow.  Will get back to the 'how to' when I am home this evening, there is a way of applying all the fix paks fron a CD but I need to look it up.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 18, 2021, 04:13:13 pm
Hi Danielle.

I never finished my "Updating Warp 4 (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/Updating_OS/2_Warp_4)" wiki page.  I tried to list there all the fixpacks that will be required to have latest and greatest Warp 4... like there was somekind of IBM Warp 4.1 (that never existed). But I never completed my goal.

My take will be to install first:
1) Fixpak XR_M015
2) Driver fixpack XR_D002

There is this article "Applying Fixpaks to OS/2 Warp from a Local Hard Drive (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/Applying_Fixpaks_to_OS/2_Warp_from_a_Local_Hard_Drive)" that may help you.

I have a different technique (similar but different). But let me see if I can post something later.

Regards

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 18, 2021, 06:17:35 pm
Hi Daniele,

Just one thing before I collapse (I hate hospitals!). 

You might find the following page helpful http://www.altsan.org/os2/fixpaks/index.html (http://www.altsan.org/os2/fixpaks/index.html) There is a lot of information there about fix paks and their application.

In your situation I would get a hard disk that is the same size as the ones in the old machines and clone the old OS/2 drive to that - try running the old computer from that drive and if it works you then have a replacement if anything goes wrong (that is what we did when upgrading the machine tools computers and it saved us several times).

If it works it is then safe to run the fix paks, first the base fp then the dd fp.  Everything should still be working when you finish and re-boot.  You can then clone the updated drive and try it in the HP computer - if that works you are home except for finding replacement PCIe adin cards.

And now I will try and relax after being subjected to every medical machine known to man.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 18, 2021, 07:06:54 pm
Ivan: My best wishes on your medical tests.

Danielle: I wrote this quick draft on how I prepare my fixpacks. Applying Fixpaks to OS/2 Warp from a Local Hard Drive (Alternative) (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/Applying_Fixpaks_to_OS/2_Warp_from_a_Local_Hard_Drive_(Alternative)#Preparing_the_Fixpack). It is still not finished.

I'm also attaching Diunpack, FIX.CMD and cs_144.exe since those files are small.

Regards


Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 19, 2021, 10:41:57 am
Hi guys.
Ivan: I hope it's all right yesterday your check up !
Martin: Thank you, this afternoon if the situation in clean room will be good I try to install the fixpacks.

I also download many .zip files of the kernel, I must install all or I need just the right one? How can I know which?

What I'm doing this days is cloned a backup of one chamber controller (we have RAID HDD installed so it's easy for me without stopping the machine) in a VHD file using Disk2vhd utility.
Loaded this VHD in a virtual machine on Oracle Virtual Box and it running well.
Now I will patch the VM and then convert it into a IMG files and with Ubuntu I will clone the IMG on an HDD.
Then I try to run this on the HP COMPAQ.
If it will work I need then to find the right multiserial board or hub and check for the ethernet connection.
In this way I don't need to reinstall the toll software and all it config.
That's my plan :).

Otherwise I think about ArcaOS for sure.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 19, 2021, 05:40:03 pm
For the kernel, I think first update to FP15, then update the kernel to 104aW4, 104a is the last free one, and W4 for Warp V4.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 19, 2021, 11:10:45 pm
Danielle: I wrote this quick draft on how I prepare my fixpacks. Applying Fixpaks to OS/2 Warp from a Local Hard Drive (Alternative) (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/Applying_Fixpaks_to_OS/2_Warp_from_a_Local_Hard_Drive_(Alternative)#Preparing_the_Fixpack). It is still not finished.

I'm also attaching Diunpack, FIX.CMD and cs_144.exe since those files are small.

Regards

Hi Martin,
today I was able to install XR_M015 following your instruction using your tools ;).
I try to install also XR_E003 but when I launch fix.cmd it says me that can't find any product !
Then I also install Kernel w41026d, it seems to be the last released.
I did all this on a virtual machine, I can always come back if I made mistake ;).
I see only now that was suggested to install also ddpack2.... the procedure is the same of  the XR packs?
Thanks

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Ian Manners on February 20, 2021, 04:21:53 am
Hi Daniele,

You do not want XR_E003, this is Fixpack 3 for WSeB (Warp Server for eBusiness)
ddpack2 can be installed the same way that you installed FP15.

You might also like to install ddpack1 as Dave mentioned,
Quote
You might want to install the first driver fixpak first as it included support for USB.

Any of the kernel files with d after the name/date are normally half strict versions, you do not want these. As Dave says below :)
you want w420050811.zip
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 20, 2021, 06:32:45 am
Also w420050811.zip is the latest free kernel that IBM released.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 20, 2021, 05:14:04 pm
Hi Dave.
Just as general knowledge, which was the last IBM kernel version/level for Warp 4 and which one was for Warp 4.52 ?
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 20, 2021, 06:02:00 pm
Hi Dave.
Just as general knowledge, which was the last IBM kernel version/level for Warp 4 and which one was for Warp 4.52 ?
Regards

104a for all versions of Warp 4+. W4, SMP and UNI depending on whether SMP or not. IIRC, the UNI supported some stuff similar to SMP while W4 was lighter weight and faster. Needed the correct DOSCALL1.DLL to match as well.
edit: There was also 105 and 106 level kernels leaked towards the end for WSEB. 104a was the last free release.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 20, 2021, 08:04:07 pm
If I remember correctly there was also a matching OS2DUMP required by the later KERNELs.

BTW, thanks for those that were concerned about my checkup - I don't recommend getting in the way of young girls trying to park a large car by hitting my garage door when I'm in front of it, it could have been a lot worse than it is.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 22, 2021, 07:33:59 am
Hi all,
I just clone my VM patched on Compaq pc HD and the system freeze on the logo image of OS/2 Warp.
The internal revision is 1.104a_W4, so I think it’s correct.
Some ideas?
Thanks
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 22, 2021, 07:57:33 am
Try during boot when the white square blob appears on the upper left, holding down the ALT-F2 keys and see if anything informative is posted during the boot.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 22, 2021, 12:18:57 pm
It’s seems to be the mouse driver, correct?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 22, 2021, 12:46:14 pm
I put a REM before the line of mouse.sys in CONFIG.SYS so the system go away, but I think there’s also a problem with VGA drivers 😣.
I see pixels and lines on the screen.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 22, 2021, 04:16:03 pm
Hi Danielle

For Video drivers I would recommend the latest SNAP freeware (snap-os2-3.1.8.zip (https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/system/drivers/video/snap-os2-3.1.8.zip)). But I'm not completely sure how good it works on Warp 4. I think a higher than Fixpack 13 is required. Maybe someone else can give us their feedback if this works on Warp 4+FP15.

The other video driver alternative that worked fine for me is an older scitech display doctor freeware from IBM (ibmsdd704.zip (https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/system/drivers/video/ibmsdd704.zip)). (read the command line installer options)

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 22, 2021, 04:43:59 pm
The SNAP drriver worked well on all my Warp 4  computers but it does need a working screen to be able to install it.

Other than that Daniele, you are doing well.  When I am able to get round better I will have a look in my garage for the hard disks saved from the old Warp 4 computers and see if I can find anything that might help you.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 22, 2021, 05:04:37 pm
Thank you guys, I hope tomorrow I will be able to test it.
I need help also for the mouse.sys.... I have an HP with scroll via ps2.
The keyboard for the moment is USB, it works?
I have installed before the driver dd001 and then the dd002.

Don't worry Ivan: you, Martin and all the other guys are doing very much for me :).

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 22, 2021, 05:13:45 pm
Hi Danielle

So now you have Warp 4, Fixpack 5 and DD0002.

I never have issues with MOUSE.SYS, as general knowledge you can do a "bldlevel mouse.sys" to see it's version.

Here it is mine for example:
Quote
[C:\os2\boot]bldlevel mouse.sys
Build Level Display Facility Version 6.12.675 Sep 25 2001
(C) Copyright IBM Corporation 1993-2001
Signature:       @#IBM:10.163#@  OS/2 Mouse Device Driver
Vendor:          IBM
Revision:        10.163
File Version:    10.163
Description:     OS/2 Mouse Device Driver

[C:\os2\boot]

The 10.163 seems too be supported on Warp 4 according the readme.  Get it at "IBM_Single_Mouse_10-163.zip (https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/system/drivers/mouse/IBM_Single_Mouse_10-163.zip)"

Give it a try to see if that mouse version solves your problem.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 22, 2021, 05:43:53 pm
Hi Martin,
I download the zip file for mouse.
The instruction tells to run install.exe, but it's not present in the unzipped directory.
I must use the only one exe that is included?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 22, 2021, 06:27:05 pm
You could try amouse, it allows scrolling and such. https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/system/drivers/mouse/Amouse_2-80.wpi (https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/system/drivers/mouse/Amouse_2-80.wpi)
You will need to install the Warpin installer first, https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/util/archiver/warpin-1-0-24.zip (https://hobbes.nmsu.edu/download/pub/os2/util/archiver/warpin-1-0-24.zip)
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 23, 2021, 12:41:54 pm
Hi guys,
this morning when I arrived at work I found a surprise.... the pc was started !
Of course I need to install the mouse drivers, and it's works with USB mouse and keyboard !!!
Next step is to test it with the machine net (as you can see it searching for it).
And then I need to find a compatible 8 COM Ports Pci board with low profile. Maybe I will ask directly to DIGI if they have new products.
For now THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH !!!
Regards
Daniele
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on February 23, 2021, 05:33:47 pm
Hi Daniele,

Well done, that sense of achievement is worth it.  But now the fun begins - finding replacements for the ad-in cards and exactly what network chipset it has.  To that end I have attached pci.zip that has the pci program and the latest pcidevs file - just unzip it and run it from its own directory.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 23, 2021, 06:45:34 pm
One thing I forgot was that after moving the partition, full hardware detection should have been turned on. There's a preference somewhere, I forget where or pressing ALT-F1 at the boot blob gives a menu that allows turning on hardware detection.
This may have been the problem with the mouse driver at first.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Andreas Schnellbacher on February 23, 2021, 07:56:54 pm
And then I need to find a compatible 8 COM Ports Pci board with low profile.
AFAIR Digi doesn't exist anymore. That's why I've mentioned the Startech one, but maybe with a maximum of 4 ports. There exist more manufacturers of PCI cards, I don't remember their names.

I doubt that any recent manufacturer provides OS/2 drivers. Maybe the only solution is to find a used Digi PCI board.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on February 23, 2021, 08:18:46 pm
Any PCI card that offers COM ports via I/O address space and defining the standard UART register set can be used with the COM.SYS driver. There is a config file that needs some setup but it will work.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 23, 2021, 09:31:14 pm
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dave Yeo on February 23, 2021, 09:37:29 pm
Always a bit scary when it only shows Windows support. I don't know much though.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on February 23, 2021, 11:30:01 pm
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards
It would be great to see a close up of the chips used. From there you can read the chip spec.
If you could return it then you might to give it a try.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Paul Smedley on February 24, 2021, 02:57:15 am
Always a bit scary when it only shows Windows support. I don't know much though.
Reading http://content.etilize.com/Manufacturer-Brochure/1024696415.pdf looks promising, shows:
Windows® 8 (32/64bit), 7 (32/64), Vista(32/64), XP(32/64), 2000
Windows® Server 2008 R2, 2003(32/64)
Linux Kernel 2.6.x
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 24, 2021, 10:12:16 am
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards
It would be great to see a close up of the chips used. From there you can read the chip spec.
If you could return it then you might to give it a try.

ID chipset SystemBase - SB16C1052PCI
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on February 24, 2021, 11:05:27 am
At least it looks promising. (I did not yet find a detailed technical spec for the SB16C1052PCI chip).

The final test would be this:
1) install the card
2) use PCI.EXE to check the PCI config space settings for this card.
3) If any one of the BARs (Base address registers) lists an I/O address range (instead of a memory address range), then there is a good chance that the card will be supported by COM.SYS, provided it offers the standard UART register set (which is normally true if a BAR announces I/O address range addressability).

After some more research, seems like the used chip (SB16C1052PCI) is compatible to:
https://www.nxp.com/docs/en/data-sheet/SC16C654B_654DB.pdf?
The chip offers the standard UART register set (which is good) but it leaves it open to the board implementer if it is addressed via I/O address space or memory address space (it just uses 3 address bits A0,A1,A2 to select between the various registers of the UART register set but it imposes no restriction to address it via I/O address space or memory address space. The "glue logic" on the board will then map it into either I/O address space or memory address space).

If the card is a multi-UART card (which it is), the next challenge normally is to find the "step size" of the register set from one UART to the next. Normally, these are evenly spaced apart. The aforementioned spec lists 4 signals !CSA,!CSB!,!CSC,!CSD which address an individual UART (of that 4-UART chip, for 8 UARTS, it will of course be 8 signals). Typically, these signal lines either directly wire to an address bit or follow a simple logic to wire to one or more address bits (for 8 ports, that would be 3 address bits as a minimum).


My advice: buy that thing, try it out and return if it does not work. By the way, if you are also using Windows, you can also look into Windows Device manager to find out which I/O or memory addresses this card occupies.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 24, 2021, 03:23:59 pm
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards

I tried the StarTech PCIe serial cards a few years ago and they do not work at all. If you are a device driver writer, there are a few changes needed. This would be a good card to have support added.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 24, 2021, 06:41:09 pm
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards

I tried the StarTech PCIe serial cards a few years ago and they do not work at all. If you are a device driver writer, there are a few changes needed. This would be a good card to have support added.

Did you find the right hardware at least? 😬
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on February 24, 2021, 07:48:21 pm
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards

I tried the StarTech PCIe serial cards a few years ago and they do not work at all. If you are a device driver writer, there are a few changes needed. This would be a good card to have support added.
Do you have a PCI dump of that card.? I suppose it is memory mapped.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 25, 2021, 03:57:11 pm
https://www.startech.com/it-it/schede-adattatori/pex8s1052

So this could be right?

Regards

I tried the StarTech PCIe serial cards a few years ago and they do not work at all. If you are a device driver writer, there are a few changes needed. This would be a good card to have support added.
Do you have a PCI dump of that card.? I suppose it is memory mapped.

That was almost 10 years ago. I do not have any dump.

We concluded that it was a memory mapped card.

For the Gasonics machine, I always had a plentiful supply of old Digi cards, so no new drivers were needed. For other projects, I found the nearly identical StarTech PCI cards to work well.

I don't really understand all the issues of using old machines in a clean room. How do you get all the dust off?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 25, 2021, 11:45:10 pm
Hi

I will like to solve the question:
- Which modern 8 Port serial card works on ArcaOS-OS/2 ?
By modern, I may refer to PCI and PCI-e that are available for sale today.

Update: I checked Amazon to see some options, but it is kind of hard to get some device to test those with OS/2.
- Syba SY-PEX15019 PCI-Express RS-232 Serial 8-Port Card with OXPCIe958 Chipset (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/Syba-SY-PEX15019-PCI-Express-RS-232-OXPCIe958/dp/B003BYRO8S)  - $60.66 (Chipset (https://www.semiconductorstore.com/pdf/newsite/oxford/OXPCIe958_ds.pdf))
- StarTech.com 8-Port PCI Express RS232 Serial Adapter Card - PCIe RS232 Serial Card - 16C1050 UART (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/PEX8S1050/dp/B08H2GYQDJ).  - US$ 164.99 (Website (https://www.startech.com/en-us/cards-adapters/pex8s1050))
- IO CREST 8 Port DB9 Serial RS-232 PCI-e x1 Controller Card with Low Profile Bracket SY-PEX15067 (https://smile.amazon.com/-/en/Serial-Controller-Profile-Bracket-Interno/dp/B07Y93644Y)  - $102.99  - (Website (https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=1046))

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on February 26, 2021, 03:33:45 pm
Hi

I will like to solve the question:
- Which modern 8 Port serial card works on ArcaOS-OS/2 ?
By modern, I may refer to PCI and PCI-e that are available for sale today.

Update: I checked Amazon to see some options, but it is kind of hard to get some device to test those with OS/2.
- Syba SY-PEX15019 PCI-Express RS-232 Serial 8-Port Card with OXPCIe958 Chipset (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/Syba-SY-PEX15019-PCI-Express-RS-232-OXPCIe958/dp/B003BYRO8S)  - $60.66 (Chipset (https://www.semiconductorstore.com/pdf/newsite/oxford/OXPCIe958_ds.pdf))
- StarTech.com 8-Port PCI Express RS232 Serial Adapter Card - PCIe RS232 Serial Card - 16C1050 UART (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/PEX8S1050/dp/B08H2GYQDJ).  - US$ 164.99 (Website (https://www.startech.com/en-us/cards-adapters/pex8s1050))
- IO CREST 8 Port DB9 Serial RS-232 PCI-e x1 Controller Card with Low Profile Bracket SY-PEX15067 (https://smile.amazon.com/-/en/Serial-Controller-Profile-Bracket-Interno/dp/B07Y93644Y)  - $102.99  - (Website (https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=1046))

Regards

As I said above, I have tested the StarTech board above and it does not work.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 26, 2021, 03:48:37 pm
Hi

I will like to solve the question:
- Which modern 8 Port serial card works on ArcaOS-OS/2 ?
By modern, I may refer to PCI and PCI-e that are available for sale today.

Update: I checked Amazon to see some options, but it is kind of hard to get some device to test those with OS/2.
- Syba SY-PEX15019 PCI-Express RS-232 Serial 8-Port Card with OXPCIe958 Chipset (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/Syba-SY-PEX15019-PCI-Express-RS-232-OXPCIe958/dp/B003BYRO8S)  - $60.66 (Chipset (https://www.semiconductorstore.com/pdf/newsite/oxford/OXPCIe958_ds.pdf))
- StarTech.com 8-Port PCI Express RS232 Serial Adapter Card - PCIe RS232 Serial Card - 16C1050 UART (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/PEX8S1050/dp/B08H2GYQDJ).  - US$ 164.99 (Website (https://www.startech.com/en-us/cards-adapters/pex8s1050))
- IO CREST 8 Port DB9 Serial RS-232 PCI-e x1 Controller Card with Low Profile Bracket SY-PEX15067 (https://smile.amazon.com/-/en/Serial-Controller-Profile-Bracket-Interno/dp/B07Y93644Y)  - $102.99  - (Website (https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=1046))

Regards

As I said above, I have tested the StarTech board above and it does not work.

Good, so I guess we can cross out the 16C1050 UART chipset, since it does not have OS/2 support.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 27, 2021, 04:37:14 pm
Hi Danielle

I wrote this little page with the information you let us know.
- Novellus Gasonics PEP Iridia DL Plasma Asher (https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php/Novellus_Gasonics_PEP_Iridia_DL_Plasma_Asher)

Can it be possible for you to take some pictures of the OS/2 software, so I can also include it to the gallery? What is the name of the software it uses?

Regards

Hi Martin,
here's the main page of the GUI

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 27, 2021, 04:43:36 pm
Hi

I will like to solve the question:
- Which modern 8 Port serial card works on ArcaOS-OS/2 ?
By modern, I may refer to PCI and PCI-e that are available for sale today.

Update: I checked Amazon to see some options, but it is kind of hard to get some device to test those with OS/2.
- Syba SY-PEX15019 PCI-Express RS-232 Serial 8-Port Card with OXPCIe958 Chipset (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/Syba-SY-PEX15019-PCI-Express-RS-232-OXPCIe958/dp/B003BYRO8S)  - $60.66 (Chipset (https://www.semiconductorstore.com/pdf/newsite/oxford/OXPCIe958_ds.pdf))
- StarTech.com 8-Port PCI Express RS232 Serial Adapter Card - PCIe RS232 Serial Card - 16C1050 UART (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/PEX8S1050/dp/B08H2GYQDJ).  - US$ 164.99 (Website (https://www.startech.com/en-us/cards-adapters/pex8s1050))
- IO CREST 8 Port DB9 Serial RS-232 PCI-e x1 Controller Card with Low Profile Bracket SY-PEX15067 (https://smile.amazon.com/-/en/Serial-Controller-Profile-Bracket-Interno/dp/B07Y93644Y)  - $102.99  - (Website (https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=1046))

Regards

As I said above, I have tested the StarTech board above and it does not work.

But do you never found a board that works?
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on February 27, 2021, 07:22:57 pm
Hi Martin,
here's the main page of the GUI
Regards

Thank you very much. I had include it on the Wiki, it always makes me happy to include information about this industrial machines that work with OS/2.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 28, 2021, 03:40:01 pm
https://www.sunix.com/en/product_detail.php?cid=1&kid=2&gid=4&pid=1174

What do you think about this? It has DOS drivers...
And it has also this note "marked as a project supported operating system. Please contact us if you have any further need"

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on February 28, 2021, 03:45:05 pm
More importantly, it states that it supports Warp3 and Warp4. Which very likely means, it is supported by the existing COM.SYS as they do not supply an OS/2 driver.
If one can install this card under Windows and install the Windows driver, it will be possible to find all the relevant parameters to add to the COM.SYS config file "PCIDEV.TBL" which should be located in the OS2\BOOT directory. If it does not exist, that file is located in the DDK ...
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on February 28, 2021, 06:15:50 pm
In bottom of the page You can download all drivers. It’s possible to install the one for windows and make your checks without having the board?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on February 28, 2021, 10:16:36 pm
No, without the board, the driver cannot query the PCI setup it needs to know.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on March 01, 2021, 04:00:07 pm
Hi

I will like to solve the question:
- Which modern 8 Port serial card works on ArcaOS-OS/2 ?
By modern, I may refer to PCI and PCI-e that are available for sale today.

Update: I checked Amazon to see some options, but it is kind of hard to get some device to test those with OS/2.
- Syba SY-PEX15019 PCI-Express RS-232 Serial 8-Port Card with OXPCIe958 Chipset (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/Syba-SY-PEX15019-PCI-Express-RS-232-OXPCIe958/dp/B003BYRO8S)  - $60.66 (Chipset (https://www.semiconductorstore.com/pdf/newsite/oxford/OXPCIe958_ds.pdf))
- StarTech.com 8-Port PCI Express RS232 Serial Adapter Card - PCIe RS232 Serial Card - 16C1050 UART (https://smile.amazon.com/-/es/PEX8S1050/dp/B08H2GYQDJ).  - US$ 164.99 (Website (https://www.startech.com/en-us/cards-adapters/pex8s1050))
- IO CREST 8 Port DB9 Serial RS-232 PCI-e x1 Controller Card with Low Profile Bracket SY-PEX15067 (https://smile.amazon.com/-/en/Serial-Controller-Profile-Bracket-Interno/dp/B07Y93644Y)  - $102.99  - (Website (https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=1046))

Regards

As I said above, I have tested the StarTech board above and it does not work.

But do you never found a board that works?
Regards

As I said earlier, the StarTech PCI 8-port card works great with OS/2. Everyone I worked for (5 different companies) on PEP had enough DIGI boards so I never had to find a compatible one. It's pretty easy to get PEP and CC running on the OS/2 computers. The challenge is to get them communicating.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Andreas Schnellbacher on March 01, 2021, 06:35:26 pm
As I said earlier, the StarTech PCI 8-port card works great with OS/2.
Neil, trying to avoid misunderstanding by reading your previous posts again: StarTech PCI 8-port works, but StarTech PCI Express 8-port doesn't.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on March 01, 2021, 11:14:44 pm
As I said earlier, the StarTech PCI 8-port card works great with OS/2.
Neil, trying to avoid misunderstanding by reading your previous posts again: StarTech PCI 8-port works, but StarTech PCI Express 8-port doesn't.

Exactly. I did not use the StarTech 8-port for this project, though. It seems a lot of robotics programs for OS/2 used serial ports to the controllers for robot arms, conveyers, etc.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on March 03, 2021, 03:11:46 pm
As I said earlier, the StarTech PCI 8-port card works great with OS/2.
Neil, trying to avoid misunderstanding by reading your previous posts again: StarTech PCI 8-port works, but StarTech PCI Express 8-port doesn't.

It’s seems Startech doesn’t produce PCI board anymore....
Only PCIe are available.
But the problem is that OS/2 has no drivers for PCIe slot?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on March 03, 2021, 03:36:36 pm
As I discussed with Lars Erdmann earlier in this thread, the PCIe card would need a new driver. The source code is closed source, but widely available in the IBM OS/2 DDK. The old driver communicated with the serial chip in the way that drivers did in the 1980s. The new driver would have to use a method that is a little more recent. I don't believe it is a big change.

If you do get someone to write a device driver, I think that the StarTech PCIe card would be a good choice.

If you had the source code for the CC application, it could be modified and recompiled to use a different communication method to the PEP hardware.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on March 03, 2021, 04:10:32 pm
In fact, I had already looked into the COM.SYS source code.
What would need to be done is to remove all testing, probing and check against the default builtin COM ports (the well known 0x3F8 etc. I/O port addresses) and the corresponding checks of the BIOS data area at 40:0 (which for our case is competely deprecated) and then to replace all "in" and "out" (I/O address) instructions by "mov" (memory address instructions).

1) Unfortunately, large parts of the COM.SYS driver are written in Intel Assembler (I seem to remember but maybe I am confusing this with other drivers). I can read and program Intel Assembler but for me, it is more difficult to read and understand than C source code
2) I have no HW to test
3) I am running OS/2 as a guest under VirtualBox

Maybe one of these days ...

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on March 03, 2021, 05:55:41 pm
But the problem is that OS/2 has no drivers for PCIe slot?

Hi

I would like that someone with more experience on this subject can answer that.  My guess is that PCIe ports works on OS/2, but there most be some change/update of chipset on the StarTech 8-port PCI-e that does not work on OS/2-ArcaOS. But I would prefer if someone can confirm or deny that, since I lack of experience here.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Sean Casey on March 03, 2021, 06:20:22 pm
I have had no issues using StarTech's PCIe to PCI low profile converter adapter (PEX1PCI1) with older PCI SCSI adapters.  It likely would also work well with StarTech's older PCI 8-port serial adapters.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on March 03, 2021, 09:41:43 pm
This has nothing to do with PCI vs. PCIe.
It has all to do with memory mapped vs. IO mapped HW registers. There are technical reasons to this.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Sean Casey on March 03, 2021, 11:42:49 pm
This has nothing to do with PCI vs. PCIe.
It has all to do with memory mapped vs. IO mapped HW registers. There are technical reasons to this.

I wasn't commenting on the COM.SYS driver.  If the StarTech 8-port PCI card is supported with OS/2 drivers and a need exists to use a PCIe-only mobo to virtualize OS/2, then the StarTech adapter might be a solution.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on March 04, 2021, 02:45:23 am
I have had no issues using StarTech's PCIe to PCI low profile converter adapter (PEX1PCI1) with older PCI SCSI adapters.  It likely would also work well with StarTech's older PCI 8-port serial adapters.

I tried that, but it did not work. I don't know why, because it worked for me with other cards.

In any case there are plenty of 8-port StarTech PCI cards on eBay any time you want one.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on March 04, 2021, 04:44:09 pm
This has nothing to do with PCI vs. PCIe.
It has all to do with memory mapped vs. IO mapped HW registers. There are technical reasons to this.

I wasn't commenting on the COM.SYS driver.  If the StarTech 8-port PCI card is supported with OS/2 drivers and a need exists to use a PCIe-only mobo to virtualize OS/2, then the StarTech adapter might be a solution.

I was commenting on Martin's post, not on yours. Sorry for the confusion.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on March 04, 2021, 10:46:28 pm
If you had the source code for the CC application, it could be modified and recompiled to use a different communication method to the PEP hardware.

That’s not good. Maybe this will be the stop point for my project.
I hope to find configuration in some .ini file...
I see there’s DIGI folder and I think is there were I must put the new board drivers, maybe renamed as the orginial DIGI XALL.SYS...
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on March 05, 2021, 12:02:42 am
Hi Daniele,

Is it possible for you to post the dir listing of that DIGI folder?  It might give a clue as to what is being used as a driver and how it is setup.  All the manuals I have been able to find for that board give some settings but not the reasons for them.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on March 05, 2021, 06:05:19 pm
Hi Ivan,
how are you?
This is the DIGI folder ;)

Reagrds
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on March 05, 2021, 06:32:12 pm
Hi Daniele,

Some of what is there rings a bell but I can't quite remember at the moment so I've passed it on to some of the people that worked for me to think about and see if they can find a copy of the software to install. 

As for me, I'm still alive but my legs hurt if I stand for too long.  A friend pointed out that I must be stronger than the garage door because I didn't break but a couple of the wood door panels did, thank goodness (I still hate hospitals).
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on March 10, 2021, 07:47:44 am
Hi Ivan,
Some news?
Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on March 10, 2021, 01:11:07 pm
Looking into install.doc makes it clear that a Digiboard is not only a simple UART board but it also contains dual ported RAM for concurrent access between board and computer (most likely in order to quickly exchange large amounts of data). This is special HW and the application SW is likely tailored to it. There is no easy exchange with a simple UART board and driver.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on March 10, 2021, 03:45:39 pm
I think the application software only does DosDevIOCtl calls that go to serial ports. I can't really be sure. It's been a long time.

But the cards are available on eBay, so I doubt there is a practical need to replace.

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on March 10, 2021, 06:24:39 pm
I understood that Daniele intended to replace the UART HW by some "standard" UART HW. If not, the better.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on March 11, 2021, 02:26:41 pm
Hi Daniele,

Some information they dug out of the archives but I'm not sure it will help you.

The job we had was to replace the computers for a set of CAM machines  that were ancient and overheating.  We chose to dump the old computers and build new ones with extra dust prevention cases.  The buld was based on the ASUS M2N68-AM board because it had both PCI and PCIe slots as well as IDE and SATA connectors for disks as well as a gigabit LAN interface.  We also upgraded the OS to Warp 4 to take advantage of the USB 2 ports.  The only thing we kept from the old computers were the DIGI multi com port boards.

With the OS update all we did was scan the old OS for anything that was not in the standard install and save those items (there isn't a list of those in the records) and later returned them to the updated OS.  The actual machine controller software was available on CD and was installed without problems.

We did find, on a test run, that everything responded faster with the new computers so that the machine operators had to be more aware of what was going on.

The fact  that there was USB 2 on the MB enabled the removal of keyboards (people do like to poke at keys) and the faster LAN enabled nich better control over the network.

I have attached the manual for the DIGI boards that were used for those interested.

 
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on March 12, 2021, 09:49:52 pm
Hi all.

https://www.digi.com/products/networking/infrastructure-management/serial-connectivity/serial-cards/digineo

Maybe same constructor will works?

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: ivan on March 13, 2021, 02:55:03 pm
Not sure about that but they do have a section of the website where you can ask questions so you could ask them if it is a slot in replacement fot the boards you have and if it will work with the OS/2 software.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Daniele on March 15, 2021, 08:21:33 pm
Hello,
I ask them and this is the answer:

"
That is some very old equipment and OS that you are running.

Unfortunately the NEO card does not support OS/2.
This is our only serial card and even all of our network products do not support OS/2."

 :'(

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on March 16, 2021, 03:10:22 pm
I got more or less the same answer from Digi 20 years ago. I got the same from Quatech.

There are a lot of Gasonics PEP out on the used market. An internet search reveals dozens available. It's hard to imagine the use for them. I can imagine that the software could be modified to run on one OS/2 computer without the network. I would have set it up, but PEP was end-of-life by the time I worked on it.

I did make a replacement computer for PEP based on an Industrial computer. That computer cost quite a bit more than the current value of a PEP on the used market. Practically, it might make sense to buy two PEP and use one for parts.

The OS needs to be real-time, which OS/2 is not. But Windows and maybe Linux are worse at real-time than OS/2. The replacement for PEP ran on a real time OS.

Making OS/2 virtual probably makes things worse. Is there such a thing as a real-time Virtual PC? Anyway, that's why there are three computers. The right and left just do precise real-time control of the robots and oven.

An OS/2 machine with a Pentium 3 would easily control 99 serial ports in not quite real time. That's why so many robotics setups were using OS/2. Windows and Linux in the same situation would generally not control even one serial port. That's why there are so many network-based serial solutions - to off-load the real-time to a dedicated processor/operating system.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Kumar Bhatia on May 06, 2021, 05:04:37 am
Hello,
I have some old industrial tools that has Pc with OS/2 warp 4 with a multiple serials ISA board interfaced with a 8 rs232 hub. I need to replace it with a windows7 pc host with virtualbox and OS/2 guest. The VHD clone of the original HD works, but I cannot manage more than 4 COM ports (limit of emulation softwares).
I see boards PCIe or serial hub with USB connection, but none has Os/2 drivers.
Does someone know a solution of this ?
Thanks

Hi. First time here and first post. I am the CTO of a hardware design company (Est 1985) in Canada and have strong design experience with PCI, PCIe and USB products. Our company did the first design of the PCIe add-on I/O adapters for the PC industry. We have 1M+ adapters in the field and hundreds of PCIe adapters (some are listed on Amazon). Digi is no longer active on these I/O designs. Startech imports offshore goods under private label.

What are the specifics of your requirements? Will you be running eCOMSTATION? We are quite new to eCOMSTATION and have been recently approached by a customer to support our PCIe parallel adapters for dongle use on the same. However, have some experience with OS/2 and met with Mr. Sam Detweiller who is the author of SIO.SYS that we have seen referenced here.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/sam-detweiler-a433702
* hope he is ok with this reminder :)

Sam came to our company many moons ago when he resided in Michigan (IBM), just prior to us becoming a supplier to PictureTel who used our ISA adapter (back then) on OS/2. It was the industry's first jumperless I/O adapter.

If there is a need and demand, we can review on how we can support this requirement. We are very comfortable with PCIe, uPCI bus adapter designs.

Respectively, we have numerous designs today with 1, 2, 4, 8, 16 ports on PCI and PCIe bus with RS232 interface. Perhaps one of our existing models can work for your needs?

Welcome feedback and continued dialog.

Thanks.
Kumar Bhatia
Axxon (OEM) Inc.
kumar [at] softio.com
www.axxon.io (new website - we are still migrating our product offerings onto the new format)
www.softio.com (old website)
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Neil Waldhauer on May 06, 2021, 04:16:25 pm
I'm an OS/2 consultant. I have some picture of the few remaining OS/2 users. There are quite a few industrial automation programs from the 1990s that relied on serial ports communicating to programmed logic arrays to do their machine control. Many of these machines only lack a working OS/2 computer with serial port support to work again.

There is also the dongle situation, which traps users on old hardware. I worked at a dongle manufacturer, and I know that OS/2 was always supported, but never was a large part of the market.

OS/2 developers have the source code for the IBM serial port driver as a part of the device driver developer kit. This support is limited to hardware available in the 1990s, but if hardware documentation were available for new serial cards, someone could extend support of the existing driver.

I don't want to exaggerate the size of the opportunity. Most of my industrial customers have migrated to newer platforms. I'm hoping someone here has a clearer idea of what would be needed to extend the device driver support.
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Martin Iturbide on May 06, 2021, 07:47:30 pm
Hi Kumar, welcome to the forum.

I'm Martin Iturbide, the moderator of this forum and OS2World newsmaster.

eComStation seems to be no longer maintained, we haven't hear any news from that product and company since 2014. Today the OS/2 community is using a different OS/2 OEM OS called ArcaOS (https://www.arcanoae.com/arcaos/) (Based in OS/2 Warp 4.52). ArcaOS is being actively developed and it is being sold to individuals and corporations that has the need to use OS/2 on modern machines. I would suggest you to contact Lewis Rosenthal from Arca Noae (company that created ArcaOS) and talk with him about the industrial necessity for OS/2 and serial multi port pci cards for industrial use under this OS.

My opinions are from a community point of view, and on this case, it is not commercial. I would prefer an open source driver for the modern PCI-e Multiport serial adapter and it possible can be spin off from some other open source drivers (https://github.com/os2world?q=DRV-&type=&language=&sort=). I would love to have some reports that the Axxon multiport modern PCI-e serial adapter works on ArcaOS, but I think it will depend on the demand that you may get with this platform. Anyway, if you need any information about the platform we can help you here, as long as our time and knowledge are able to.

Regards
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Dariusz Piatkowski on May 07, 2021, 03:08:43 am
Kumar!!!???

Hi. First time here and first post. I am the CTO of a hardware design company (Est 1985) in Canada and have strong design experience with PCI, PCIe and USB products.
...
Sam came to our company many moons ago when he resided in Michigan (IBM), just prior to us becoming a supplier to PictureTel who used our ISA adapter (back then) on OS/2. It was the industry's first jumperless I/O adapter.
...
Thanks.
Kumar Bhatia
Axxon (OEM) Inc.

No way...it's been many many years since we talked, but say around the early to mid-90's I would stop by once in a while at your shop and just talk pure computing stuff, or better yet, the field of Artificial Neural Networks. Not sure if you recall, but during my first visit to your location I remember asking to speak to the president as the business name, Axxon, was just so darn close to the AXON of the ANN fame (and well, the biological build we all have within us), which was my field of study (thesis work) for my last year of undergrad at UofGuelph.

Anyways...a bit of a memory lane walk there, and welcome to our forum. We have just a couple of OS/2 users from Windsor on here, and as both Martin and Neil pointed out, this forum is largely focused on grass-roots type of discussion around our platform.

ArcaNoae on the other hand is the leader in the commercial space today, and I for one would hope they might need the sort of solution you can provide. Lewis will be able to answer this I believe.

Either way, would love to catch-up...heck, I remember you telling me about the assembler work you guys were doing at that time, most of it device driver software if I recall?
Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Kumar Bhatia on May 09, 2021, 06:31:44 pm
Dariusz ! :) How are you ? I recall our last meeting @ TD Bank (Malden road) ages ago. How are things? Recall our meet our place well. Are you still in Windsor ?

Yes, we saw the writing on the wall ages ago on retail sales. We all have a background in either EE or Comp. Sci from the university and the business was an easy way to generate revenue for the real projects of interest. We have an in-house SMT line for our prototype / PCBA builds. The line is amazing and we have been able to place down to 01005 SMD parts and recently developed a breakout board with the Lattice ICE40UL1K (16 balls WLCSP package in a 1.4*1.4mm footprint). Learning about FPGA at our age is always fun but Verilog is fairly logical.

It has been a fun ride and we now have many designs for the PC industry and supply all the major players including the aerospace / airlines. In the movie Scully - the flight simulator from CAE has our adapter design from Windsor in there :) They use a real-time hardened version of Windows for this task and our adapter offered the hardware requirements demanded by this project. Our more current designs offer DMA engines on the PCIe adapters to allow for very high sustained data rates which robotic surgical firms are after.

We are researching edge node designs with AI but there appears to be always some monetary catch with the silicon companies. They want us (every client I suppose) to buy containers of silicon but then the ref designs are with some astronomical backend license. Still very much learning. On device drivers development - yes, we have a great team offshore that charges US rates :( but are solid. We have firm support on Windows and Linux platforms. With some bruises, did a design for a medical company for a robot that is running on QNX. No thanks to QNX for their zero support.

Hope you are well. Stay in touch. Are you in the software or hardware field ? If you are in Windsor, drop by and will show the SMT line which is a beast but cool when it is running. Hope that we can expand it with more equipment in the future.

On the OS2 support - I think we have some designs that can work but openly need testers to validate our knowledge that is on paper. It is not practical to write custom drivers, even if we could find the proper support materials and developers. Rather, we can properly match one or more of our designs with Mr. Sam Detweiller's device driver package. He worked with Mr. Ray Gwinn before this. The cost to develop a custom device driver can be easily $20k++ USD.

In summary, pretty sure we can support at least:

1S, 2S, 4S on PCIe bus with our existing hardware. More unique products are in development.

Stay safe!! Bye for now.

Kumar

Title: Re: OS/2 on Virtualbox with 8 COM ports
Post by: Lars on May 10, 2021, 11:34:13 am
If you can supply HW that defines I/O mapped registers (but NOT memory mapped) as the usual register set (Line control reg, mode control reg. etc.) and this register block is contiguous as usual for each supported HW I/F, then the default COM.SYS driver will do. COM.SYS just assumes the registers to exist that existed 20 years ago.
COM.SYS will read the BAR value(s) directly from PCI config space. The rest is done with a configuration file ("stepsize" of repeated register block for each HW I/F, for example).