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NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

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Larry Line
Occasional Visitor

NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Need documentation or 'how to' for configuring a system running OVMS 7.1-1H2 to use NTP to obtain time from a local server and adjust the clock. I have manuals for V7.3, but there are great differences in NTP between these versions.
11 REPLIES
RBrown_1
Trusted Contributor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Rather than the VMS version, we really need to know which version of which IP stack you are running. Try

$ SHOW NETWORK "tcp/ip"/full

If that tells you that it was manufactured by Digital, then try

$ UCX SHOW VERSION

Larry Line
Occasional Visitor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Digital TCP/IP services for OpenVMS Alpha Version V4.2 - ECO1 on a Alphaserver 800 5/500 running OpenVMS 7.1-1H2.

Thank you for replying.
Andy Bustamante
Honored Contributor
Solution

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

I would recommend you upgrade to TCPIP 5.0a with appropriate patches. Version 5.1 is possible but can't be fully patched. In either case, your operating system and TCPIP version are long out of support. You may also considering moving to a supported operating system.

That warning out of the way, replace TCPIP with UCX. With the move to version 5, the layered product was renamed. Use

$ @sys$manager:ucx$config

to enable the service, but do not start it yet. Edit SYS$SPECIFIC:[UCX$NTP]UCX$NTP.TEMPLATE and save it as your config file. There are examples in the sample file.

Make sure your time zone logical is set properly. See http://labs.hoffmanlabs.com/node/148 for notes on adjusting the unsupported operating system for Daylight Saving Time.

Start the service with

$ @sys$startup:ucx$ntp_startup

Check the log files in SYS$SPECIFIC:[UCX$NTP]

If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over? Reach me at first_name + "." + last_name at sysmanager net
Larry Line
Occasional Visitor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Here are the rubs -

There is no SYS$SPECIFIC:[UCX$NTP] on this machine, hence no template (anywhere - I looked). Also the startup file is UCX$NTPD_startup.

I'm stuck with this OS on a legacy application that died after V7.1.

I've been told that the legacy app MAY still run on 7.3. I guess I need to come up with CD's for 7.3. (Or perhaps V5.1 of TCPIP if it's compatible with OVMS 7.1)

Thank you again.
Andy Bustamante
Honored Contributor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Did you run

$ @sys$manager:ucx$config

to create the directory and deploy your template file?

Use that startup file. You can upgrade to TCPIP 5.0a and patches or possibly TCPIP 5.1 without the latest patches. VMS 7.1 was out of support when the last patches were built for TCPIP 5.1, it may or may not be a good thing to load on your system. That's one of the drawbacks to running an unsupported system.



If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over? Reach me at first_name + "." + last_name at sysmanager net
John Gillings
Honored Contributor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Larry,

>I'm stuck with this OS on a legacy
>application that died after V7.1.

Sorry, I don't buy it.

Engineering go to such extraordinary lengths to preserve upwards compatibility, it's actually quite difficult to write code on OpenVMS which doesn't "just work" on later versions. You almost have to write:

IF this-version <> specific-version THEN fail

Indeed, there are many minor bugs in OpenVMS which should be fixed, but aren't, all in the name of compatibility (the silent failure of DEFINE/EXEC without SYSNAM privilege springs to mind).

Given the abundance of absurdly cheap (free?) hardware capable of running V7.x vintage code, I would strongly recommend eBaying yourself an old Alpha and some storage so you can test your application without interrupting production.

I'd target at least V7.3-2, but maybe even try V8.3. Since it sounds like support has gone anyway, what have you got to lose (except many headaches dealing with bugs and inconveniences which have long since been fixed).
A crucible of informative mistakes
abrsvc
Respected Contributor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

I agree with John here. OpenVMS is perhaps most famous for having upwards compatible versions. I still have V1 images that run fine on V7.3-2 VAX machines. (Anyone remember Space Invaders?)

If you'd like to persue this line, perhaps informing us of the legacy app that seems restricted? Some of us may have seen or heard of it (assuming it is not home grown) and can provide additional guidance.

Dan
Larry Line
Occasional Visitor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

I did run UCX$CONFIG to enable the NTP server component and now have the template. I may be good to go.
___________________________________________

The app is called ENVOX, but the core application is Sybase 10 and the schema is complex. ENVOX/Sybase10 running on OVMS 7.1 is warrented to work and support is still available (for the app, not the OS). ENVOX is/was used by refineries, pharms, power gens, etc. for configuration of process control systems, the failure of which can cause death, injury, and so on. The ENVOX provider now manufactures an entirely different Windows based system and refuses to move this one beyond 10/7.1. I did try once to move to an Alpha DS10 bought used with OVMS 7.3. The processor microcode on a DS10 is not the same as an 800 and Sybase 10 won't compile (Was a known problem, but not to me).

What I have has been extremely stable. The only reason I need external time is - I moved a 2nd app to Windows. For good reasons that app provided and adjusted the time from a specific source using an EXE for which I don't have source code. The 2nd app is removed, but I still need to sync the Alpha to network time.

I did buy two identical spare 800's last year just to have surety of repair if the live one dies. So I have room to experiment. But I'm not great at VMS. I've been running this one-critical-box-shop out in the boondocks without support for 20 years. Nothing ever breaks, so how do you get good at VMS? It takes a lot of study, time, and multiple backups before I make changes.

So where can I get CD media for V7.3 ?
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Larry,

according to experience with an UCX V4.2 ECO 2 system and NTP:

- you must enter the IP address(es) of the NTP server in UCX$NTP.CONF, not the DNS
name(s)

- make sure the value of the system-logical SYS$TIMEZONE_DIFFERENTIAL is correct, otherwise NTP will set local time to a wrong value.

- if you're using automatic DST switching (Daylight Savings Time), expect time offset problems after boot with this old version of OpenVMS.

Volker.
Andy Bustamante
Honored Contributor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

>>>I've been running this one-critical-box-shop out in the boondocks without support for 20 years. Nothing ever breaks, so how do you get good at VMS?

If you have a 20 year old system, on board spares and have a plan to keep things running, consider yourself good at the job. There may be gaps in what you know, but this is one of the places you can remedy that. Comp.os.vms is another.
If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over? Reach me at first_name + "." + last_name at sysmanager net
Larry Line
Occasional Visitor

Re: NTP on OVMS 7.1-1H2

Got it.

I think Andy had the answer after I provided the stack info. I just had to work at it until I became less confused (or more confident) and covered all the steps.

Thanks to all. I'm glad I finally found this site.