So you've seen the photos and thought to yourself, "How the heck did they do that?!?!" well, we are here to help answer those questions with the FrankenFAQ. We hope that these nuggets of information help shed light on some of our creations.
Q: What power does it take to drive a disk can (cage) from a 6xx or 7xx machine so I can hook it up to my 170?
A: The cage has a 9 pin connector on the back with one pin missing so you can't connect it backwards. The pins need the following voltages applied:
+5V +12V G G G G Pin +12V +5V
We have found that a 250W PC Power supply can handle two cages along with a couple fans to keep the cages cool. Be Careful to allow for the fans to come off for drive maintenance. Also watch fan speed because those that go like crazy get kinda noisy!
Q: Can't I just apply power to that 'PC Like' 4-pin molex power connector on the back of the can?
A: No. That connector is output power to drive a tape or CD Drive only. Applying power to that connector doesn't do anything.
Q: Some of my disk cans have two SCSI ports. Which do I use?
A: On the top cages in the 6xx and 7xx machines there is an input 68 SCSI connector (female) and an output connector (male) The Male connector MUST have an LVD terminator connected or bad things will happen. The lower cans have no output connector and have termination build in.
Q: Can't I hook anything to the output connector of the disk can?
A: Yes you can. If you want to add an LVD tape drive or CD Drive, connect it there with an LVD SCSI terminator downstream of the drive. You MUST set the SCSI address of the drive properly. It can be address 0 but CANNOT be address 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7. These addresses are the 5 drives, the SCSI backplane in the CAN and the SCSI controller.
Q: My 720 has two disk cans on the left which are full of drives but I am told I cannot add a third can to the left side of my 720 model. But there is one can on the right with no drives in it. Can I use that can?
A: Yes you can! While iSeries Navigator will get all confused about the physical location of the drives in that can you can run the SCSI cable from that can through the center of the cabinet and connect it to port three on the SCSI card (i.e. 2741, 2748). It already has power connected to it.
Q: What is this high speed low speed slot thing? They sure look the same to me. Is this to keep me from overloading the IOP or is IBM just limiting the capabilities of my server?
A: The low speed slots are missing some pin signals that certain cards really do need. The reason for this is the SPD heritage of the machines where slots have this designation (i.e. 6xx, 7xx, 170 and 250 machines with PCI slots) If you put a 2838 in a low speed slot for example it will show up and appear to be happy. However try to vary on an Ethernet line description that uses the card and it will fail miserably even if you configure the line for 10Mb.
Q: I want to add some extra disk units to my 170 but I already have 10 of 'em in there. I've looked at FAQ #1 but I don't want to add another power supply. Can't I simply draw power from one of the extra connectors inside my 170?
A: Maybe. The left side power supply runs memory and processor and such and while it may have extra power I would avoid overly stressing that power supply. The one on the right side is usually a bit larger so it is a candidate. Now if you have an Integrated Netfinity Card on the right you won't have the extra power available to keep everything going. Without an INS card there is enough power there to run one extra disk can and a cooling fan. Frankie ran that way for over a year until we added another INS card. We couldn't get the INS card to vary on in this configuration - it would fail completely at some point during the vary on.
Q: Where does Frankenseries.com run?
A: We at Frankenseries.com eat our own cooking. Our web site, email, ftp etc all run on Frankie. When we're messing with him you'll get an 'Oops' page.
Q: Does IBM support Frankenseries.com?
A: Are you nuts? They know we exist and think we're cool. When we call with problems they laugh a lot. We have broken so many rules that even the local CEs stand well clear of our stuff.
Q: There is a big UPS in the bottom of my old 720 which is being retired. Can't I use that as a stand alone UPS?
A: While it is possible, so far Dr. Franken has not yet ascertained the pin signals needed to get it to fire up. Remember that an important function of these UPS was to supply DC voltage to keep main storage powered during a power outage. In addition to that you are messing with 240 Volts 20 Amps of AC power and 48 Volts (and 100 Amps?) of batteries either one of which could cause big problems (serious problems like burns and DEATH!) if improperly handled. If you aren't qualified to deal with this stuff, keep your hands off! Also Dr. Franken has blown one of those UPSs to smithereens, every single one of the 20 Power MosFets inside the UPS exploded within about 3 seconds. They are about as loud as a starter pistol and they throw flames when they go!! Fortunately they are inside a stout metal box. (Thank you IBM.) In another experiment my trusty assistant iGor caused the transformer in that UPS to roll smoke.
Hmmmm. Do not try this at home, we're what you call 'experts.'
Q: If I have more drives in my system than IBM allows how can I maintain them if one of them would fail?
A: Well you won't maintain those through the iSeries navigator GUI! IBM has built in a table of drive locations and tower layouts. Any disk unit above the limit for the system clearly won't have an entry in the table. Fortunately in Service Tools the drive will have an address and a device name such as DD035. Service tools will happily allow you to replace a failed drive using that name and then rebuild it if it's RAID or MIRRORed. The only thing you cannot do is add more drives in MT slots. This is since the MT slots aren't supposed to exist, the drives that aren't in them don't have a name. You will need to put the drives in and IPL the system for them to be recognized.