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Hidden Value details commands and procedures in MPE that can improve your productivity with HP 3000 systems. Send your tips to, or fax them to 512.331.3807.

Edited by John Burke

We have a new A-Class system with only a DDS-4 tape drive. The tape that HP sent us for an add-on MPE/iX product is 60m DDS-1 format. It appears the DDS-4 cannot read the 60m DDS-1 tape. It just keeps ejecting the tape. Is this correct?

Denys Beauchemin replies:
I warned of this problem almost a year ago, but it looks like HP did not listen. The DDS-4 will indeed not read from or write to 60m tapes. It can read from but not write to a 90M tape. The 120-, 125- and 150-meter tapes are all okay for read and write.

The original questioner updates HP’s solution:
HP has sent the customer an external DDS-2 tape drive, cable, and terminator. Apparently, it is etched in stone that all the 3000 tapes cut are DDS-1 format on 60M tapes — a format which cannot be read by DDS-4. The poor guy at the Response Center said that they wouldn’t budge. He gets an A+ for his effort to take care of the customer. He asked us to contact someone higher up to see if we could help get this fixed. So, we’ve forwarded this problem to ‘higher ups’ hoping they can get the policy changed.

We want to change our default output device for stdlists from LP to NERDD — our electronic document distribution software. We’d prefer not to have to change the OUTCLASS= parm on every JOB card, and the HELP JOB command indicates that this is changed in the system configuration. The question is where?

John Clogg and Gilles Schipper reply:
You can do that by modifying LDEV 10 in sysgen, as follows:

md 10 outdev=nerdd

Then, reboot with a “start norecovery”. You also need to ensure that NERDD is a valid output device class name. Finally, you need to ensure that device NERDD is “openq’ed” before initiating any job streams — otherwise the jobs will simply enter the wait state.

I’m on 6.0 PP2 and need to adjust the rins and grins on a server. I know that I need to update from tape, but I’ve been told that I can only make one change at a time. I’d like to know if I can just change both rins and grins, cut a tape, then boot from it.

Rick Clark replies:
I went onto the ITRC database and found the document “Increasing GLOBAL and LOCAL RIN values” (ID number MPEKBRC00005601). It says:

NOTE: It is very important to know that GLOBAL and LOCAL RINS cannot be increased on the system at the same time. One or the other can be done in a single pass by creating an SLT with the changes and then booting the system with an UPDATE CONFIG START NORECOVERY. Once this is done, the other RINS are changed and the system is booted again.

How can I find out information about UDC files on my system and who has them “setcataloged”?

Jeff Vance replies:
Version A.03 of the CHKUDC script is on Jazz now at
This version distinguishes between “active” UDC files, meaning one or more jobs/sessions is using them vs. UDC files catalogued for users that aren’t logged on. :chkudc ? provides online help for the new parm. The chkudc script reports UDC info based on “user.acct” input parameter.

If I am using a command file to create another command file by using ‘echo’ commands, I can put the string “abcd goldfish” into my new command file by saying “echo abcd goldfish >blap.” But how can I put in the string “>short”? If I say “echo >short >blap” it doesn’t work.

Larry Barnes and Jeff Vance reply:
Try the escape character “!” as in echo !>short >blap

I’d like to compare files across two systems. I have the full DS product. How do I do this?

Dale Strommer replies: has a compare option and will work across a dsline.

Is there is an FTP client for the HP 3000 (MPE/iX 6.0) that supports Passive mode?

Gavin Scott and James Hofmeister reply:
Passive is available in FTP/iX in General Release patches. See FTPDOC.ARPA.SYS for details: FTPGD93 for C.70.00, FTPGD92 for C.65.00, FTPGD91 for C.60.00

How can I find out what’s the largest value that the HPPIN variable will hold? Our system is a 979/200 running 6.5.

Stan Sieler replies:
From MPE/iX 5.0 through MPE/iX 7.0 (base release), the maximum PIN is 8190. (In MPE/iX 4.0 and 4.5, it was 5460). As of MPE/iX 7.0 PowerPatch 1, you can have a maximum PIN of 12000 ... if your machine is large enough. (The maximum value scales with the amount of memory you have.) In short, make sure your code supports a five-digit PIN for doing things like creating file names with embedded PINs, formatting PINs, etc.

Is there a tool similar to “md5sum” from Debian Linux, but for MPE/iX? “md5sum” calculates some sort of check sum for a binary file in some method that all but guarantees that two files cannot have the same check sum.

Lars Appel replies:
See GNU textutils 2.0 for MPE/iX at, which, as far as I recall, includes md5sum.

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