I was involved with the AXPBox project, an Alpha emulator based on ES40, but that seems to be finished, works just fine to get X11 / CDE running. Now that the x86 hobbyist program is available, I'm back into OpenVMS and am having a lot of fun. I wrote a few guides to help new people get started on VirtualBox:
- Part 1, covers installation in VirtualBox: https://raymii.org/s/blog/OpenVMS_9.2_f ... arted.html
- Part 2, covers licenses, networking and SSH: https://raymii.org/s/blog/OpenVMS_9.2_f ... art_2.html
- Part 3, covers installing the WebUI: https://raymii.org/s/blog/OpenVMS_9.2_f ... art_3.html
- Installing HAProxy and a bit of troubleshooting UNIX filenames: https://raymii.org/s/blog/OpenVMS_9.2_f ... Proxy.html
I also wrote a small piece on the hobbyist program for x86, https://raymii.org/s/blog/OpenVMS_9.2_f ... yists.html, which was featured on The Register: https://www.theregister.com/2023/04/13/ ... x86_hobby/
I hope the guides and articles help other people who want to get started with OpenVMS using VirtualBox. I did get a bunch of emails after publishing them informing me of VMWare and a few other tips, but VirtualBox is my hypervisor of choice on desktops. I do have a lot of fun, hobbying, with OpenVMS, so the hobbyist license works great for me. Before it was available I even contacted VSI sales for a license, but the price I was willing to pay for a "personal" editition license was not something they would offer, which I understand. Now, a year later, the hobbyist license is amazing, all software is available, even the WebUI and new stuff like HAProxy, Mosquitto and the C++ compiler!Alongside copious amounts of documentation, DEC was also famous for its hobbyist program, which allowed fans to get and run DEC OSes on their own non-production machines for free. After Compaq bought DEC, an early Reg article covered the extension of the hobbyist program to Alpha machines. Very nearly a quarter of a century later, VMS Software is in the process of extending its equivalent, the community licence program, to include x86 alongside Alpha and Itanium. Blogger Remy van Elst reports that although he hasn't received the notification himself, another hobbyist forwarded the email, and Remy was able to log in and download the x86 edition.
You will need a login for VSI's service portal, but if you've already got one, the files to look for are X86E921OE.ZIP for the software itself, plus x86community-20240401.zip for the license PAK. Remy has also published a handy guide on how to install the OS on VirtualBox – which, if you're running on Windows, requires disabling Hyper-V. The Reg FOSS desk hasn't tried the x86 edition just yet, but we've applied for a license and we'll report back if we get one.
Feedback on the guides is more than welcome.