Re: Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system (356 Views)
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Advisor
Joseph Kang
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎05-11-2004
Message 1 of 6 (356 Views)
Accepted Solution

Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system

Before I get to my question, please note that I am completely unfamiliar with Tru64 (though I am familiar with many other UNIX and Linux variants), I am completely unfamiliar with Alpha OpenVMS, and I have searched through Google to try and find the answer to my question before I came here.

So, please be kind. :)

The company I work for provides an application that was originally developed for the Alpha OpenVMS system. It was recently brought to our attention that one of our customers is actually running this product on a Tru64 4.0G system and has been for years.

This news caught us completely unprepared as we are not sure how this customer is able to do this without a complete recompilation of the application. And that is something the customer cannot do as we only distribute object code and/or binary. Our installation procedure performs any linking that's necessary as part of the installation process.

We had no idea that Alpha OpenVMS apps could run on Tru64 unmodified. We asked someone we thought would be able to provide additional insight into this but they were of no help so I am turning to you folks here.

It appears that this does work (at least for this one particular application). My questions are:

How does it work? Is there an emulator or some other facility built into Tru64 that allows this?

Has this always been the case for Alpha OpenVMS apps and Tru64? If not, at what version of Digital UNIX or Tru64 did this get introduced?

Without getting into details here, what do we need to be aware of in supporting this customer going forward?

The particular product that this customer is running is very mature. It has not had any code changes made to it in at least 10 years (if not longer than that). At this rate, if any changes do need to be made, they would be solely for the sake of future operating system release compatibility.

I appreciate any information you folks can provide me with. URLs to specific pages with additional details would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
Honored Contributor
Steven Schweda
Posts: 9,096
Registered: ‎02-23-2005
Message 2 of 6 (356 Views)

Re: Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system

> [...] I am completely unfamiliar with Tru64
> [...]

If you've seen one UNIX (-like) OS, ...

> We had no idea that Alpha OpenVMS apps
> could run on Tru64 unmodified. [...]

Join the club. I've never heard of it. One
can imagine running an Alpha emulator on a
real Alpha, and running VMS on the emulator,
but that's the only scenario which leaps to
my mind. And that seems pretty unlikely. So
far as I know, without such an emulator, a
VMS executable transported to a Tru64 system
would be useful only as a consumer of disk
space.

> [...] Is there an emulator or some other
> facility built into Tru64 that allows this?

Nothing built-in of which I'm aware. There
exist free and commercial Alpha emulators, at
least some of which should be able to run on
a real Alpha. But the usual reason to use an
emulator is to get off the old hardware and
onto some newer/faster/cheaper hardware. (An
emulator tends to be much slower than the
underlying hardware, so that hardware had
better be pretty perky.)

A Web search for keywords like, say,
alpha emulator
should find more than I know. (I tend to run
real old hardware, not emulated old
hardware.)

> [...] what do we need to be aware of in
> supporting this customer going forward?

It might be nice if you knew what he is
really doing. Personally, I'd contact the
person who's making this claim, and ask _him_
what he's doing. He ought to know more about
it than either of us. (My first reaction
would be that the fellow is tired and
emotional, but I'd try to get some details
before making that accusation. Especially if
he's a _paying_ victim.)
Advisor
Joseph Kang
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎05-11-2004
Message 3 of 6 (356 Views)

Re: Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system

Steven, thanks for the reply and the info!

That's what I thought. I think I will have to ask some more directed questions to the customer.

My problem is how to do it without coming across as completely clueless considering the fact that we are the company that supports this product. The customer might start questioning our ability to support this if we come across as completely clueless.

But, that's my problem.
Honored Contributor
Steven Schweda
Posts: 9,096
Registered: ‎02-23-2005
Message 4 of 6 (356 Views)

Re: Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system

> My problem is [...]

I tend to admit complete ignorance and/or
confusion up-front, and then get on with
curing the info/comprehension shortage. But
my self-esteem is too low to damage easily.

A Forum search for the phrase "I know
nothing" is likely to find me repeatedly.
Advisor
Joseph Kang
Posts: 18
Registered: ‎05-11-2004
Message 5 of 6 (356 Views)

Re: Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system

Ha! Frankly, I'm of the same mind.

Thanks again!
Honored Contributor
Pieter 't Hart
Posts: 1,984
Registered: ‎09-04-2002
Message 6 of 6 (356 Views)

Re: Alpha OpenVMS applications on a Tru64 4.0G system

>>>

It appears that this does work (at least for this one particular application). My questions are:

How does it work? Is there an emulator or some other facility built into Tru64 that allows this?

<<<

It may stop working in about 3 days. :-)
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