The Machine Emulator

I always wanted to have an emulator for a Sun3. About one year ago i became aware of tme by Matt Fredette. The version 0.2 was far too uncomplete to be useful. But since some months, version 0.4 is out and it looks pretty good!

I've put together some tips to help people overcome some rough edges. These come from my own experiences and are presented "as is" without any warranty.

Building tme

The core graphics relies on gtk-1.2 which is rarely found on recent systems, so fetch the latest version of gtk+1.2.10 and glib-1.2.10 from any mirror, build and install them (i used the default place /usr/local for simplicity).

Don't try to build tme-0.4 with --enable-shared (this is the default). It didn't work for me on any platform. I had much better luck with --disable-shared.

Add the following lines at appropriate places in your .profile or .basrc:

echo "PATH=$PATH:/usr/local/bin;export PATH"
echo "LTDL_LIBRARY_PATH=/usr/local/lib;export LTDL_LIBRARY_PATH"
Then unpack, build and install glib, gtk and tme:
tar xzf glib-1.2.10.tar.gz
cd glib-1.2.10
make install (as root)
tar xzf gtk+-1.2.10.tar.gz
cd gtk+-1.2.10
make install (as root)
tar xzf tme-0.4.tar.gz
cd tme-0.4
./configure --disable-shared
make install (as root)
This should give you a well working tme in /usr/local.

I was sucessful on the following platforms: SuSE 9.3, SuSE 9.2, SuSE 8.2, NetBSD-1.6.2. Unfortunately i had no luck on Solaris 10/Sparc yet.

Tips for setting up a Sun 3/160 emulation

Follow the instructions on Matts setup page: Emulate a Sun 3/150 running NetBSD.

The emulator is really slow (like a 3/160 too). Don't panic! Please wait and see what happens. From my experience, a 700-800 MHz Pentium-3 gives roughly the speed of a 3/60. If you redirect the graphics to another display on the network, this will slow down emulation somewhat. NEVER tunnel over ssh, this will slow down the emulation considerably!!!

Don't try to use the Intel Ethernet ie0. It won't work. Too bad!

Enabling a serial line ttya or ttyb unfortunately redirects the console to it regardless whether the Sun3 keyboard and the graphics are enabled or not.

If you plan to use NetBSD, continue with the instructions given on Matts page Emulate a Sun 3/150 running NetBSD.

My only suggestion to his instructions is: Don't use a sparse disk file. Trade the hard disk space for more performance. Todays hard drives are hundreds and thousand times bigger than in the ol' days of the Sun3 aera.

If you plan to go with SunOS 4.1.1, there are some minor differences:

  1. Use the ACB-4000 instead of generic-scsi.
  2. Do not use uneven start cylinders on partitions with ACB-4000.
  3. SunView doesn't work on the color graphics, so deactivate it.
You can speed up the SunOS installation considerably if you use an uncompressed tape archive. Instructions how to do this can be found in my article SunOS Install Media. For the impatient, here are the commands how to lump it together:
wget -r
mv my-sunos-tape
cd my-sunos-tape
uncompress *.Z
ln -s tpboot.sun3 01
ln -s SunOS411.sun3.Exa.xdrtoc 02
ln -s munix_sun3 03
ln -s munixfs_sun3 04
ln -s miniroot_sun3 05
ln -s sun3_proto_root.sunos_4_1_1.tar 06
ln -s sun3_usr.tar 07
: (see Appendix B of the above mentioned article for the correct layout)
ln -s sun3_security.tar 31
ln -s sun3_openwindows_programmers.tar 32
ln -s copyright_sun3_tape1 33
cd ..
foreach i (my-sunos-tape/??)
ln -s $i
Voila! Make an entry at the very end of your configuration file MY-SUN3 to reflect the new SunOS-4.1.1_U1 install tape and to start up the emulator immediately:
command tape0 load 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33
command mainbus0 power up
If you plan to use X11R6, you can leave out the following packages during installation of SunOS: If you miss "dbx" (the only non-graphics program in debugging.tar), fetch it from patch no 100252-01.

I have never installed the following packages:

All other packages are somehow usefull so please install them.

The parameters to format the 1 GB hard disk image are: 14700 cylinders, 14702 physical cyl., 8 heads, 17 sectors, 3600 rpm. I named the disk label "ACB 1GB".

Copyright 1999-2007 Peter Koch