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FIELD SERVICE SOFTWARE ASSISTANCE BROCHURE D E C X 8 Prepared by: Rick Moore
INTRODUCTION This document concerns the building, initializing, and running of a customized version of the PDP-8 System Exerciser, DECX8. The following procedure assumes that the user has a working knowledge of rudimentry OS-8 techniques such as booting the system, listing directories, and saving programs. It is also assumed that the neccessary DECX8 builder and execisor modules are available on an OS-8 media, specifically a disk (RK05 or RL01), a Diskette, or a DECtape. For more detailed information, please reference : AC-C276E-MA - AXQABE0 DEC/X8 User's Guide and appropriate module listings in the microfiche library.
DECX8 System Concepts DECX8 is a modular software system in that the total system may have many unique software configurations dependent upon the type and placement of various software modules. Software exerciser modules may be inserted into a predetermined skeletal frame and initialized with the particular parameters to give the tailored exerciser the desired characteristics. In this manner, DECX8 can be "tuned" to exercise the hardware with much the same loading factor as the operating system software. DECX8 may be built for any size system; from 8K to 32K, or even up to 128K if the KT8A Memory Management Option is available. For purposes of general discussion, we will assume a system size of 16K. A DECX8 software module (job) is a sub program designed to exercise specific hardware functions under control of the DECX8 software system. There are two basic types of software modules, interrupt driven and background. Interrupt driven modules exercise devices which cause program interrupts. The continued running of this type of module is dependent on its next device interrupt. Background modules are self sustaining programs and do not generate or require program interrupts. The sequence in which jobs are serviced, both for interrupts and housekeeping, is a function of each job's priority. Under normal operating conditions, the higher priority jobs are serviced first. Job priorities are assigned by the user at build time and remain fixed thereafter. The designation for job priority is a two digit octal number starting at the highest priority , 00, to the lowest, 37. In addition, if the system has greater than 32K words of memory and a KT8A Memory Management option, it will be neccessary to map the priority of the Data Break options.
Each software job, running at a given priority, is located in a "jobslot", of which there are 4 per memory field. The first 2 are 4 page slots, the remaining 2 are 2 page slots. An exercisor module that takes 2 pages may reside in a 4 page slot, but not visa-versa. Therefore our system of 16K looks like: SLOT MEMORY FIELD 0 1 2 3 ----------------------------------- | | | | | 1 | 4 page | 4 page | 4 page | 4 page | | | | | | ----------------------------------- | | | | | 2 | 4 page | 4 page | 4 page | 4 page | | | | | | ----------------------------------- | | | | | 3 | 2 page | 2 page | 2 page | 2 page | | | | | | ----------------------------------- | | | | | 4 | 2 page | 2 page | 2 page | 2 page | | | | | | -----------------------------------
BUILDING PHASE The OS-8 medium that DECX8 is contained on must be initialized by normal methods. Then type: ".R DECX8" ( or whatever it is called ) If you are running from the NED Diagnostic System, the program will come up running, if not, it will halt at location 201. a) place the device code of the console teleprinter (usually 04) in SR bits 3-8 and hit continue. The TTY will print a message and halt again. b) place the device code of the console keyboard (usually 03) in SR bits 3-8 and hit continue. the program will now print: HSR? - if there is a high speed reader, answer "Y"; if not, "N" DEVICE CODE - if "Y" to above; enter device code of reader ( usually 01 ) HSP? - answer "Y" or "N" for high speed punch DEVICE CODE - same as above ( usually 02 ) EXT MEM? - type the number of the highest memory field in the system (00-37)
the program will now determine the type of CPU: PDP-8? - "Y" only if the processor is a traditional 8 PDP-8/E? - "Y" for an 8/e; "N" otherwise VT78? - "Y" for a VT78; if "N" to all the above, a 8L/8I is assumed NOTE: The purpose of the VT78 question is to remove any halts or references to the SR from the customized version of the exerciser being built since a VT78 has no hardware switch register. However, the "Catch-22" of this is that without a switch register, it is impossible to enter the 03-04 device codes and hit continue. The program "DECX8.SV" on the NED Diagnostic System has patches (listed at the end of this text) which remove these halts and assume a console device code of 03-04 so it is possible to build DECX8 on a VT78 or PDP-8A with no switch register. the program will now determine which options exist: (answer "Y" or "N" for each query) KT? * - for KT8A Memory Management option VT100? - inserts XON / XOFF capabilities for slow scroll operation over 2400 baud EAE? - Extended Arithmetic Element PF? - Power Fail / Auto Restart option MP? - Memory Parity option TS? - Time Sharing Control is active * if you specify a KT8A, it will be neccessary to map the priority of any Data Break devices during the initalization stage. See the section on initialization for more information.
NOTE: For the remainder of this document, the operator to computer responses will be enclosed in  brackets, while program to operator prompts are in plain text. At this time, the program will print: ^C ! and you are in the DECX8 monitor To transfer control to the builder ! [^B] OK? [Y] The program will ask: INPUT VIA OS/8? [Y] OUTPUT VIA OS/8 USING FILE BASED DEVICE? [Y] % [B] this prompt indicates the program is ready to accept builder commands and then prints PRI:00 % indicating the program is waiting for the jobslot assignment for priority level "00" At this time, install the various jobs into the system as the jobslots are opened. You may be asked to provide information concerning device codes, word count, and current addresses. In most cases, the default values may be taken by typing a <CR> but any nonstandard values can be specified. Install them in priority order, with the fast data break devices first, followed by interupt driven devices, and then the background programmed I/O devices. This is a general rule to which some noteworthy exceptions are that "TIMERA" must be PRI00 if it is installed; "TC01DT" must be highest priority (after TIMERA). These and other special conditions are noted in the individual module writeups that are included in the DECX8 section of the Microfiche Library.
After all of the jobslots are filled: PRI:nn % [^C] CTRL C to return to DECX8 monitor ! [S] to list all the modules you have inserted At this time, you must initalize some of the modules with various parameters to tell the system, for example, the number of disk drives to be run, the data patterns to be run, etc. ! [IJfx] where "fx" is the jobslot (ie: IJ01, IJ13) or ! [AI] Initialize all jobs The initialization data for each module is listed in the various modules writeups in the Microfiche Library. If you have built a system that includes a KT8-A Memory Management option (more than 32K words od memory), it is neccessary to map the priority of the Data Break devices. This situation usually arises on the new 211 Series Word Processors. If this is not done, these devices will report numerous data errors and appear to be faulty. ![MPJfx] followed by the assigned priority for the device Examples of such devices are RL01s and RK05s. When all jobs are initialized: ! [^B] ^B OK? [Y] % [P] this will write the newly created exercisor to the OS/8 media. Give it any name you wish, but for consistency, please use the extension ".X8" At this time, the customized version of DECX8 is saved on the OS/8 media, and can be run by typing: .R MYPROG.X8 ! [AR] run all jobs ! [^E] begin exercising
The following text is typical of the dialogue to build, save, and run a customized version of DECX8. Our target system will be a PDP-8A with 16K of memory,2 RK05 drives, a TC08 DECtape controller with a dual drive TU56,2 RX01 dual floppies, a KL8A (M8319) Multiple SLU option connected to two terminals at 9600 baud, and an LP05 printer. The terminal is a VT100 connected to the M8316 module. A map of our jobslot layout could look like: SLOT MEMORY FIELD 0 1 2 3 ----------------------------------- | | | | | 1 | TIMERA | RANMRI | MULSLU | FLOPPY | 4 page jobs | | | | (2&3) | ----------------------------------- | | | | | 2 | FLOPPY | TC01DT | RK8EDS | OPRATE | 4 page jobs | (0&1) | | | | ----------------------------------- | | | | | 3 | MRI08A | PRNTER | OPRATE | MRI08A | 2 page jobs | | | | | ----------------------------------- | | | | | 4 | NOTFUN | OPRATE | MRI08A | OPRATE | 2 page jobs | | | | | ----------------------------------- OF SPECIAL NOTE: - TIMERA must be J01 - there are two FLOPPY modules that will be given different device codes - a 2 page job (OPRATE) can live in a 4 page slot - any unused slots are filled with background jobs (OPRATE and MRI08A) - when building for a VT78 system, there may be patches to the modules that must be made. Consult the module writeups for particulars. - if a KT8A is present, the priority of the Data Break devices must be mapped with the [MPJfx] command.
BUILDING DIALOGUE note: operator responses are enclosed in brackets  .R DECX8 - the OS/8 media is booted and the DECX8 monitor/builder is called and identifies itself HSR? [N] HSP? [N] - the system has no PC04 EXT MEMORY (00-37)  - we have fields 00-03 (16K) PDP-8? [N] - not a "Straight-8" PDP-8E [Y] - same as an 8A ! KT? [N] VT100? [Y] - as our console terminal EAE? [N] PF? [Y] - comes "free" on the M8317 in the 8A MP? [N] TS? [N] ^C ! [^B] ^B OK? [Y] - now in builder mode INPUT VIA OS/8? [Y] OUTPUT VIA OS/8 FILE BASED DEVICE? [Y] % [B] - begin to build, installing modules in priority order PRI:00% [J01] *TIMERA DC = 0130 - type a carraige return to take the default device code of 13 for the clock (remember there is one on the M8316 in the 8A!)
PRI:01% [J12] *TC01DT - remember the TC08 must be first after DC = 0760 the clock module = 0770 WC = 7754 take all the default values for word count CA = 7755 PRI:02% [J22] *RK8EDS - the RK05 controller module DC = 0740 PRI:03% [J13] *PRNTER - now do the fastest interupt driven DC = 0660 jobs such as the line printer PRI:04% [J21] *MULSLU - the KL8A is next DC = 0400 0410 - 40 & 41 are the standard device codes for the four line M8319 PRI:05% [J02] - now the programmed I/O devices *FLOPPY DC = 0750 drives 0 & 1 have the standard device code of 75 PRI:06% [J31] *FLOPPY - but drives 2 & 3 have their own DC = 0750  control board that we have set for device code 70 (note that this could be other address we set the hardware to). Be aware that the normal code for the 2nd. set of floppies is 76 but since this system has DECtapes at that code, we choose 70. PRI:07% [J11] - now install the background jobs *RANMRI PRI:10% [J34] *OPRATE
PRI:11% [J03] *MRI08A PRI:12% [J04] *NOTFUN PRI:13% [J32] *OPRATE PRI:14% [J33] *MRI08A PRI:15% [J24] *MRI08A PRI:16% [J23] *OPRATE PRI:17% [J14] *OPRATE PRI:20% [^C] - no more jobslots available; return to builder monitor ! - now you have to initialize the exercisor ! [IJ01] TIMERA A  - remember that these parameters are B  for the M8316 module C  D  ! [IJ02] FLOPPY A  B  C  D 
! [IJ03] MRI08A ! [IJ04] NOTFUN  01  - now you must insert ALL of the valid 02  device codes starting with the TTY 03  - power fail IOTs are on the M8317 04  - clock 05  - have to list 06  all of the 07  extended 10  memory 11  IOTs on the 12  M8317 module (20-27) 13  14  15  - 40 & 41 are for the M8319 Multiple 16  Serial Line Interface 17  - this is the M8316 Parrallel Port 20  - line printer 21  - floppy drives 2 & 3 22  - RK8E 23  - floppy drives 0 & 1 24  - 76 & 77 are the TC08 DECtape 25  26  - 00 is the CPU IOTs and the end of the table *** note: if you are initializing this module for a VT78, be sure to include  which is the VT78 panel memory IOT. For a PDP-8A with a M8316 module,  is the parallel port. These must be included or NOTFUN will give errors. !IJ11 RANMRI !IJ12 TC01DT A  B  - lowest & highest drive numbers C   - start with block 4 D  E  F 
!IJ13 PRNTER A  - # of characters B  - 132 columns (80 column would be 0120) C  D  E  F  !IJ14 OPRATE  - this is an 8/e or 8/a !IJ21 MULSLU  - indicates we are going to terminals 0   line 0 to terminal, full ASCII 1   character set to be transmitted 2  3  lines 2 and 3 are deactivated !IJ22 RK8EDS A  - lowest drive # 0 B  - highest is #1 C  D  E  !IJ23 OPRATE  !IJ24 MRI08A !IJ31 FLOPPY A  B  C  D  !IJ32 OPRATE  !IJ33 MRI08A
!IJ34 OPRATE  ! [^B] ^B OK? [Y] - now to save the exercisor on your disk % [P] UPON ".", TYPE "SAVE (DEV) (FILE)" - - - . [SAVE SYS TEST.X8] . - you are back in OS-8 monitor and done!
DECX8 Runtime Switch Register Options SR Bit State Function ______ _____ ________ 0 0 Monitor serves jobs according to priority 1 Monitor serves jobs in a sequential manner 1 0 All jobs run in "Executive" mode only 1 All jobs run in "User" mode whenever possible 2 0 Enable normal Rotate and Status reports 1 Disable normal reports and ignore ^S requests 3 0 Status reports generated in long form 1 Status reports generated in short form 4 0 Enable slot rotation if memory larger than 8K 1 Disable slot rotation * 5 0 Jobs MQ contents are preserved and restored 1 MQ displays priority of current job 6 0 Errors take normal exit to failing job 1 Non-fatal errors return to keyboard monitor 7-8 00 Report all errors including all bad data 01 Report errors and first 4 sets of bad data 10 Report all errors except data errors 11 Report no errors 9 0 Upon error the job continues to run 1 Upon error the kill flag for the job is set 10 0 Random external buffer usage occurs 1 Present external buffer assignments frozen 11 0 Random device, unit, and address selection 1 Device, unit, and address selection frozen * DO NOT set to a 1 if any EAE jobs are running!
DECX8 Keyboard Command Summary Command Function _______ ________ ^B Switch control to Builder ^C Calls DECX8 Keyboard Monitor ^E Exercise all Enabled Jobs ^R Force Rotation and Exercise jobs IJfx Initialize Job "Jfx" MPJfx Map Priority for device in Job "Jfx" RJfx Run Job "Jfx" KJfx Kill Job "Jfx" AI Initialize All Jobs AK Kill All Jobs AR Run All Jobs ^OBfaaaa Modify Field "f" Location "aaaa" ^OJfx Relative mode memory modification RRRR Relative address in "Jfx" S Generate Status Report W Go to OS-8 keyboard monitor; save swap area X Go to OS-8 keyboard monitor without save Dnn Console output to terminal device code "nn" Lnn Console output on LE8 / LP05 device code "nn" Tnn Console input from keyboard device code "nn" (%)B Build Exerciser (%)P Punch or Save Exerciser (%)ES Print remaining empty job slots under builder
PATCHES to DECX8 The following patches are incorporated into the program "DECX8.SV" on the NED Diagnostic System. These allow the building and use of DECX8 on a system that has no hardware switch register. Location Old Value New Value Reason ________ _________ _________ ______ 00200 7402 7000 remove halt 00201 7704 1265 standard device code 00210 7402 7000 remove halt 00211 7704 1366 standard device code for the RKS8E module 16334 7402 7000 or hit CONTINUE for ".BX" default extension 16034 0216 0230 The following locations can be patched using the ^O(dt) feature of the DECX8 monitor to simulate the action of the front panel Runtime Switch Register Options. Set the appropriate location to a value of 7340 to set the bit to a 1. Bit Location Function ___ ________ ________ 0 01675 Ring Queing 1 01511 User or Exec mode 1 13071 user mode 2 11713 enable or disable all status reports 3 11524 long or short status reports 3 11623 " " " 4 12000 inhibit rotation 4 12034 " " 5 01454 use of MQ 6 02704 action upon error return to set bits 7 & 8 00 - do nothing 01 - locations 02633 and 02643 get 7340 10 - location 02643 gets 7340 11 - locations 02633, 02643, and 02723 get 7340