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Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-16-2006, 07:19 PM   #1
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Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

So I've been asked to help another site with some IT security issues, and Sunday I'll be flying out to NY to try my hand. On the prep call this morning I asked what systems they were running, no problem until they sad VAX! Anybody here work on VMS and can give me some tips on it's security architecture (user account creation, password settings, account lock out etc.). I'm casting blindly, but I figured with a bunch of retired engineers, I had a shot.
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-16-2006, 07:22 PM   #2
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Not since the '80s. but I think TH invented them...
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-16-2006, 07:31 PM   #3
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dory36
Not since the '80s. but I think TH invented them...


....wait, it wasn't Al Gore?
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-16-2006, 07:46 PM   #4
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence
So I've been asked to help another site with some IT security issues, and Sunday I'll be flying out to NY to try my hand. On the prep call this morning I asked what systems they were running, no problem until they sad VAX! Anybody here work on VMS and can give me some tips on it's security architecture (user account creation, password settings, account lock out etc.). I'm casting blindly, but I figured with a bunch of retired engineers, I had a shot.
Vax - Wow, just, wow :P
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-16-2006, 10:07 PM   #5
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence




....wait, it wasn't Al Gore?
Stop laughing transvestite boy. I wrote a few of the drivers for VMS 1.0...then did 3rd level engineering support for Digital Field employees in the northeast.

This is going to be easy for you though. Same architect that built VMS (Dave Cutler) built Windows NT. The innards are surprisingly similar and even use a lot of the same terms. I stopped working with the product around VMS 3.2 when 4.0 was coming out, but it looked to me like they kept it pretty up to date.

This will make you happy...
http://www.auditnet.org/docs/decvaxvm.txt
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-16-2006, 10:24 PM   #6
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Stop laughing transvestite boy. I wrote a few of the drivers for VMS 1.0...then did 3rd level engineering support for Digital Field employees in the northeast.
No wonder you caught the early retirement bug.

Bpp
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 12:31 AM   #7
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Thanks, bunny boy. Ugh, ya, I'll get through it, but I will be demanding an explanation for why they are still running it. I love a challenge, though. Come in, act as if you didn't spend the last 72 hours cramming on whatever problem they have, fix it, and calmly ask what's for lunch. I love this job.
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 12:18 PM   #8
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Believe it or not, we still had some at Intel. Some manufacturing apps and a few other real time verticals that run really, really well on vms on an old vax, and the fricking things have great uptime.

The good news is that in most of the apps they're employed in, you dont need to connect them to the main network (except for administrators convenience), and may just need to connect them to the manufacturing bus or subnet and isolate inbound and outbound traffic for the vax at the router. The admin will kick and scream because he has to go to the console terminal to do stuff, but thats why they make ten dollar costco sneakers...
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 04:49 PM   #9
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

So how did they make WinNT less stable than VMS?
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 04:59 PM   #10
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

It does a whole heck of a lot more, supports a lot more hardware and software, the software developer doesnt also spec and make the hardware, and on VMS users didnt have administration rights by default. No GUI. No internet. No "hacker community".

Thats the part a lot of people forget when they feign superiority of a product...if OSX and linux supported all the same hardware, software, applications and was rolled out to the same sized user base under the same conditions...they'd suck too.

Although NT/Windows 2000/XP havent ever been that bad. Win9x, a totally different product, is another matter...
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 05:09 PM   #11
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Win 98 with all the service packs was not horrible, but Windows ME more than made up for it. What a piece of work!

Just to make it funnier, I just found out I won't have a week to work on the site, I'll have a day. Customer inspection is on Tuesday. If I pull this off I'm changing my screen name to something like "big brass ones". :P
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 05:48 PM   #12
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Thanks for the informative reply.

One of your points, I think, is an exaggeration, in that Linux probably runs on a wider variety of hardware than any Windows version does (oh, and also has a more amateurish developer community with less involvement with the hardware manufacturers), but all the same, those are some good reasons!
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 05:50 PM   #13
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence
Just to make it funnier, I just found out I won't have a week to work on the site, I'll have a day. Customer inspection is on Tuesday. If I pull this off I'm changing my screen name to something like "big brass ones". :P
And if you don't pull it off....?

Johnny Noballs?

Good luck with it!!
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 06:39 PM   #14
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cool Dood
Thanks for the informative reply.

One of your points, I think, is an exaggeration, in that Linux probably runs on a wider variety of hardware than any Windows version does (oh, and also has a more amateurish developer community with less involvement with the hardware manufacturers), but all the same, those are some good reasons!
All I can say is that I've run some limited distros successfully for specific tools and apps, but every machine I ever installed it on had a critical piece of hardware that no linux drivers existed for. I've never gotten any distro to run on a laptop where the graphics, network, sound and burner were all fully supported. But then its been a few years...
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 07:59 PM   #15
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Hehe VAX. I used to MUD (text only gaming) back on the University VAX system. I almost flunked out of college because of it.

I just can't get into graphics based role playing games now.
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 08:11 PM   #16
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Dungeo from the old tops-10 ported to a pdp-8 that I used to have nearly did a 1970's version of evercrack to me... :P
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 08:18 PM   #17
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

People were still playing multi-user dungeons back in 96 when I was in college, I had a friend who was addicted to it as well, his espresso machine worked overtime.

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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 08:22 PM   #18
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute 'n Fuzzy Bunny
Dungeo from the old tops-10 ported to a pdp-8 that I used to have nearly did a 1970's version of evercrack to me... :P
Ouch, I did the same from home when a "modem" had big rubber suction cups for the phone and Ma Bell charged by the minute. At least until my folks discovered what that weird phone noise was.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurence
If I pull this off I'm changing my screen name to something like "big brass ones". :P
In the workplace I think that translates as "Big Bonus Boy."
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 08:33 PM   #19
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

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Originally Posted by Nords
Ouch, I did the same from home when a "modem" had big rubber suction cups for the phone and Ma Bell charged by the minute. At least until my folks discovered what that weird phone noise was.
The anderson jacobsen acoustic coupler! 110-300baud on a very good day with the wind blowing in the right direction, downhill, both ways, sun shining, and at least 125 volts coming out of the plug. AND DONT TOUCH IT WHILE YOU'RE USING IT!
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?
Old 03-17-2006, 08:58 PM   #20
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Re: Anyone a VAX/VMS administrator in a former life?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute 'n Fuzzy Bunny
Dungeo from the old tops-10 ported to a pdp-8 that I used to have nearly did a 1970's version of evercrack to me... :P
Nothing like "Empire" on a KL20, accessed using a Heathkit-19 at 300 baud to waste a little time...
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