The design team had close co-operation between hardware engineers led by the legendary Gordon Bell and a software team led by Dave Cutler. The resulting system was the VAX-11/780 computer and the VMS operating system, and was available in 1978.
Around 1982, the computer science research group at University of California at Berkeley was contracted by the US Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) to port the Unix operating system to the VAX-11 architecture and extend it with networking protocol software so that it could be used on the Internet in a similar manner as the TENEX operating system that Bolt Beranek and Newman had written for the PDP-10.
The VAX was very successful with both operating systems.
|VAX-11/780||1978||1.0||The first VAX. SBI backplane, with Massbus and UNIBUS adapters. An LSI-11 with dual floppy drives was built in for use as a diagnostic control unit, and also used for microcode loading.||Most important novelty was the Massbus, a mainframe-like data channel for disk and tape drives.|
|VAX-11/750||1982||0.6||A less expensive machine for those who wanted a VAX but could not afford a 780.||Most remarkable peripheral: TU58 serial cassette tape drive used as diagnostic bootstrap medium.|
|VAX-11/782||1982||1.8||Two 11/780s sharing an MA-780 memory bank.|
|VAX-11/784||1983||3.5||Four 780s sharing a memory bank. Very rare.|
|VAX-11/785||1982||1.5||A 780 whose performance was boosted with a faster cache memory. A dual-processor version was called the 11/787.||T878 Massbus tape drives|
|VAX-11/730 (11/725)||1984||0.3||A low-end, slow and fairly cheap machine with only a UNIBUS as the system bus. This machine was so slow that its main market was as a software development system for small software houses that needed a "toy" machine for their software engineering lab. But it was different enough from the larger models that you still needed test time on a "real" VAX.||Amazingly, the russians cloned this machine as well, TU58 console tape and all!|
|MicroVAX I||198?||0.5||First single-chip VAX CPU. Qbus with 22-bit addressing as main bus. Did not run teribly well.|
|MicroVAX II||198?||0.9||A wonderful machine. Cheaper, faster and more robust than the 730.|
|MicroVAX 2000||????||0.9||Workgroup server|
|MicroVAX 3000||198?||1.0||Synopsis||New gear|
|VAX-8600||1984||?||Upgrade path from 780. Still uses SBI as the main system bus, and thus shares all the 780 peripherals.||TD>|
|VAX-8650||198?||5.0||Small mainframe. Last production VAX with PDP-11 compatibility mode.|
|VAX-8200||?||0.9||Smallest machines with VAXBI bus. 8250 was dual-processor version.||VAXBI (BI bus). RX50 floppy (5.25 inch) as console load media.|
|VAX-8300||1.4||Slightly faster version of 8200|
|VAX-8500||3.0||Much faster version of 8200|
|VAX-8800||?||?||Upgrade path from 780.||VAXBI (BI bus)|
|VAX-9000||1990?||??||May have been intended as an attempt to build a supercomputer, but by the time it came out, it did not make the grade and was presented as a mainframe instead. This was right after the Jupiter project (large PDP-10) was cancelled, and the 36-bit hardware team was taked with building a VAX instead. The process is said to have been painful, and the resulting machine had reliability problems and lots of field rework (one ECo replaced most of the boards with new revisions!). Only a few dozen were built.|
|MicroVAX 3100||1994||16 or 38||Desktop workstation|
|VAX 4000||1994||38||Desktop or Rackmount Server. Qbus.|
The HSC50 had a 13 MB/sec internal bus, and had several disk channels each capable of 3.125MB/sec to tape and disk drives (RA81). The data rate from CIA to HSC could reach 70 Mbps.
$Log: vax.htm,v $ Revision 1.3 2001/10/26 13:28:03 lars Replaced CMC -> Beagle-Ears Revision 1.2 2001/01/02 06:44:25 lars *** empty log message *** Revision 1.1 2000/08/15 01:25:08 lars Rearranged files, moving these from computer/ to comphist/