Booting an IBM MP 3000 S/390 System

Mike Ross tmfdmike at
Thu Aug 6 21:11:01 CDT 2015

If you want to see how it works on bigger iron, here's a rare beast
indeed: my Application Starterpak 3000 - internal IBM codename
'Warthog'. A real S/390 in a half-height chassis. First video is a
power-up; let it play to the end and it segues into the next video,
IPLing the beast!



On Fri, Aug 7, 2015 at 6:43 AM, Guy Sotomayor <ggs at> wrote:
> On 8/6/15 11:05 AM, Eric Christopherson wrote:
>> On Thu, Aug 6, 2015 at 12:41 PM, Guy Sotomayor <ggs at> wrote:
>>> Back to the MP 3000.  There are a number of CPUs in the box.  Two are the
>>> most
>>> obvious: the SBC running OS/2 and the actual S/390 CPU.  However, there
>>> is
>>> another
>>> S/390 CPU in the box as well.  It is not visible (at least directly) to
>>> S/W.
>>> It is responsible
>>> for providing the high performance I/O capabilities (like native disk
>>> access
>>> and making
>>> them appear as conventional channel attached devices instead of RAID-5
>>> SSA
>>> drives).
>>> The OS/2 SBC is there to emulate some of the slower devices (card
>>> reader/punch,
>>> direct attached 3270s, etc).
>> So the OS/2 computer is actually a component of the mainframe's
>> control processor, not a separate PC?
> In various other S/390 and z/Series machines, there is a laptop that is the
> "service element" with
> special S/W (now I think on Linux).  On the MP3000, it is a single board
> computer that is on what
> looks like a big PCI card.  By it's nature it is hooked into various parts
> of the MP3000 system through
> the various other things that sit on the PCI bus.  Note that the PCI bus is
> shared between the SBC
> and the other parts of the MP3000.
> If you don't fire up the system element software the OS/2 system would
> appear as a somewhat
> "normal" PC with a bunch of special device drivers.
> There's a great diagram (too complicated to reproduce in ASCII art) that
> illustrates all of the major
> components in the MP3000.  It's located in the IBM Redbook "Multiprise 3000
> Technical Introduction".
> It's Figure 1 on page 8 of the redbook.  This is a really great introduction
> on the MP3000.
> TTFN - Guy

'No greater love hath a man than he lay down his life for his brother.
Not for millions, not for glory, not for fame.
For one person, in the dark, where no one will ever know or see.'

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