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Re: Why, what, and where.

On Tue, 7 Dec 1999, Technical Support wrote:

> Why alpha arch? If relating only to network/internet server use is there
> any real advantage to alphas? My understanding (I am not an engineer) is
> that alphas are better number crunchers. But net IO is so slow that
> multiple nics in a P3 seems to be adaquate for "normal" organizations. 

Except for people like that guy who used 120 alphas to do the rendering
for the movie Titanic, I doubt one linperson in who have alphas actually
really needs it.  I think most people have them because they are truly
superior machines and a nice alternative to wintel, not because they need
the horsepower.  There are problems, however...

> What is a good non-archaic alpha to start with? My only alpha experiance
> is with AS100a and DUnix4.0d. This would be a debian only, experimental,
> learn why I want to envest in alpha box. I don't want to be bleeding edge,
> but something made in the last generation or so would be nice. Also what
> would be a good comparison to a P3 500, 256MB RAM, 10GB hd. Aprox price?

I'm not sure.  I have an alpha xlt that I havn't ever been able to get to
run right (kernel unaligned traps in 1.3, debian install problems with
debian 2.1).  The sad truth is that alphas aren't (or weren't) really
compatible with each other as far as bootstrapping is concerned, so an
already small user base is further fragmented.  It seems to me that what
really needs to happen to make alternate platform linuxs work is for the
companies that have an interest in the particular platforms to step in and
do some work to support them.  digital made a reasonable effort, from what
I understand compaq has lately more-or-less dumped the line.

> Now just one "complaint" from a non-alpha guy who is interested in the
> arch. Why is information so hard to find? What info I was able to find
> seems to be at such a high level that it is almost not understandable by
> those of us who are fairly clueless. I sm not a genius but I am not an
> idiot either. 

The above observation applies to bootstapping documentation as well.  IIRC
there are in the actual disks directories (ex. /xlt) documents which tell
you how to get started.  They contain some errors though, like mixed up /
\ and the like.

Britton Kerin

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