Lund Performance Solutions Sponsor Page


Hidden Value details commands and procedures in MPE that can improve your productivity with HP 3000 systems. Submit your tip directly to us here at the NewsWire. Send your tips to, or fax them to 512.331.3807.

Edited by John Burke

Is C part of the FOS on 6.5, or is it an add-on product?

Mark Bixby replies:
It’s an add-on product, P/N 31506A.

Charles Finley elaborates:
At the risk of answering the wrong question, HP C is only a C compiler, it will not handle C++. The implication of this goes beyond the obvious. It means it is not suitable for porting many modern products, including various popular open source products. There is an alternative C compiler, gcc, and it is free. Mark Klein ported it to the HP 3000. In my opinion it is a better (more modern and full-featured) compiler than ANSI C, although ANSI C has one advantage that has to do with the use of PRAGMA Intrinsics. Most, if not all, Open Source products are ported using gcc. Hewlett-Packard uses it extensively. Paid support is available through a third party.

Finally, Walter Murray adds:
The HP C/iX compiler is not part of FOS. The run-time library, however, including the relocate-able form of the HP C/iX Library, is part of FOS.

Is there a way to empty Samba log files?

Lars Appel replies:
While I’ve never used it myself, Samba seems to have a “max log size” directive in smb.conf that causes a log switch to log.old or similar, and a fresh one started.

Can I use the ALLOW command without rebooting?

Ron Horner, Andres Ogayar and Ted Ashton reply:
You can issue the ALLOW command anytime you want. You can only issue the command at the console. You can ‘get’ the console at your current session (you must have SM capabilities), with the command ‘CONSOLE <nn>’. After that, issue the ALLOW command and return the console to its origin ‘CONSOLE 20’.

Jeff Vance adds:
The ALLOW command itself can be allowed.

Editor’s note: Not only does an ALLOW not survive a reboot (so the original questioner was in for a lot of frustration), it is only valid for the duration of the job or session. A persistent ALLOW facility was on the most recent SIB but did not make the top 10.

I’ve modified the configuration for our tape drive in sysgen to mode=autoreply. However, when I do a backup, I’m still getting a reply request. Is a system reboot is required?

John Burke replies:
In a word, yes. A START NORECOVERY is required after re-configuring a tape drive to AUTOREPLY.

I have a system on MPE/iX 6.5 pp2 with a serially connected (via DTC) 2563B (recently moved from one floor to another). It is now not reporting “out of paper” or “paper jam” to the 3000. I am told that this printer used to stop (Flashing 11) and wait for more paper, but now it just happily prints everything whether there is paper or not. Did I miss anything on changes to the spooler?

John Burke, Andres Ogayar, Doug Werth and Barry Durand all reply:
The “paper out” sensor is probably either faulty or dirty.

I have forgotten how to set dip switches on a Jamaica box to a particular SCSI address. What are the settings?

John Burke replies:
4 bit binary. Up is one and down is zero.

dddd == 0000 == 0
uddd == 1000 == 8
uuuu == 1111 == 15


You’ll probably need a flashlight, a pointed tool and, also, young eyes because the switches are inhumanly small.

Ken Sletten adds:
While you’re doing this with the small pointed tool and reading glasses (alternative to 20-something eyes), I’ll add my $0.02 follow-on suggestion: “Rock” each switch back and forth a couple times; and try to note if all switches have about the same “tactile feedback”. Because they are so small and even good ones have low resistance to movement it can be a little hard to tell, but this let me catch a potential address conflict problem. We have two HASS enclosures. On one of them, one of the DIP switches was so “loose” you could almost blow on it and cause it to “fall” to the zero (down) position.

My solution? In lieu of major repair (if I understand correctly HASS DIP switches are “soldered” to the back plane - or so I was told), “embed” the defective DIP switch in one drop of RTV silicone. Of course that makes it a bit harder to change again if we should ever need to do that, but in our case, odds were low enough I went for the quick and reliable solution.

I’ve got a question about the CI function ‘finfo’. There are two options available that reference blocksize. One is called ‘blksize’ (#15). The other is ‘byteblksize’ (#31). What’s the difference between the two?

John Clogg replies:
The short answer is that ‘blksize’ returns words and ‘byteblksize’ returns bytes.

Is there a way to cause a specific user to automatically log off the HP 3000 after a specified amount of time in which they are inactive, say, 15 minutes?

Ken Sletten replies:

Jeff Kell cautions:
Note that HPTIMEOUT only applies at a colon prompt.

How can I configure a Default Gateway?

Fred Metcalf replies:
On screen #158 in NMMGR: Neighbor Gateway Reachable Networks (Path: NETXPORT.NI.SQUHNET.INTERNET.HPRS )

Press the ‘Help’ key (F7) and read this:

IP network address
List the IP addresses of all the networks that you will be able to reach through the gateway you are configuring. You also use this field to indicate whether or not the gateway is to serve as a default by entering an at sign (@) to specify that it is a default gateway.

Is there a tool which, given an IP address, will return the MAC address of the device responding to that address?

Karl Hancock replies:
You can look up the currently known IP addresses and MAC addresses in the route tables using

and then find the IP address of interest with its corresponding MAC address in the table.

Gavin Scott elaborates:
This is called the arp (address resolution protocol) protocol. It will only work for devices on the same 802.[x] or Ethernet LAN segment, however, since MAC addresses never pass across network boundaries.
For devices on your own segment that your 3000 is talking to, you can use the NETTOOL program (as someone gave details for) to look at the arp cache of mappings from IP -> MAC.

I can’t get to Jazz from work. I suspect it may be due to the way our network is configured. The numeric IP for Jazz is and all of our internal IPs are 192.6.*.* . Is there a way for me to get to Jazz from work?

Mark Bixby replies:
The jazz subnet is 192.6.38.*. Non-HP networks should not be using these addresses if you want to be able to access that HP subnet.

Internal networks should not be using IP addresses which conflict with the outside world. A special block of “private” addresses was created to prevent this conflict problem. It sounds like you need to consider renumbering that part of your internal network, and you should consider using the address ranges specified in RFC1918:

I have an HP e3000 with a Session Limit of 60 and, in SYSGEN/MISC, a Session MAXLIMIT of 100. However, if I have 20 sessions running and the 21st session tries to log on I get: USER LIMIT REACHED; LOGON REFUSED. (JS 903) Does this mean I’ve reached my MPE license limit?

Gavin Scott replies:
I believe so, yes. You can look at the HPUSERLIMIT variable to see what the “license” limit is for the machine.

Note that there are some things which count as “sessions” but which do not count as “users” against the license limit, so generally you want to have your session :LIMIT larger than the HPUSERLIMIT value, otherwise you may artificially limit the number of useful connections you can have.

I’m trying to connect a [fill in the blank with a non-HP manufacturer] printer to my HP e3000 using MPE/iX network printing but it does not seem to work. Anyone have an idea what I’m doing wrong?

[Editor’s note: Some variant of this question is asked at least once a month (this month three times). Here are the necessary and sufficient conditions to use a printer as a network printer with MPE/iX. If you cannot meet these conditions then you will have to use a third-party product to affect network printing from MPE.]

• The printer must understand basic PCL. The network print spooler has several hard-coded PCL commands and there is no way to override them. Most laser printers understand PCL since HP pretty much established the standard for laser printers. Most non-HP impact printers do not understand PCL because other manufacturers set the defacto standards for impact printers. Always check with your vendor before purchasing.

• The network interface should ideally be an HP (or 100-percent compatible) JetDirect card or external JetDirect box. Other network interfaces can usually be made to work by adding the directive snmp_enabled=false to the network printing configuration file. You may also need to specify a different port number along with the IP address.

These requirements are not going to change. CSY has steadfastly refused to consider enhancing network printing any more because there are multiple third-party solutions available.

I’m having some trouble transferring files between an HP 3000 and an HP 9000. Sometimes, when the HP 9000 tries to send a file to the HP 3000, the client hangs when doing a “dir” or other command and we have to kill the process. We are transferring large files every 5 minutes using FTP and there is always a heavy traffic on the link.

Scott Swartzell suggests (the original questioner responds that it fixed the problem):
Try increasing significantly (double if already small) the number of TCP connections via NMMGR.

We had a batch job that ran out of control and filled up our system volume set. I have removed the offending spool file but now none of our batch jobs will run; they are all in a WAIT status. How can I fix this?

The spooler queue for device LP has probably shut down, and either an OPENQ LP or STARTSPOOL LP should fix things. Often this is all that is necessary case. However, if it does not work, issue an ABORTIO 6, then a STARTSPOOL LP to resume batch jobs.

Is there a way to determine the last time the system was rebooted?

Paul Christidis, Gregory Stigers and Andreas Schmidt all suggest:


This will show the date and time of the last reboot.

Gary Jackson and John Burke suggest:
Run SYSINFO.PRVXL.TELESUP and issue the MISC command.

Finally, Cory Black and Barry Durand suggest the UPTIME program available for download free at

I have a script that does a ‘listfile {something},6’ to a file. From there the output from LISTFILE is passed to the ‘finfo’ function. I was running this script where {something} was HFS notation for a regular MPE group and finfo failed. In this particular case (where the script failed), there are files, both in MPE and hfs name space, that are links to other files. Is there any way around this problem?

Mark Bixby replies:
The POSIX /bin/find command returns :LISTFILE,6 style output and will work the way you expect.

Copyright The 3000 NewsWire. All rights reserved.