Booting an IBM MP 3000 S/390 System

jwsmobile jws at
Fri Aug 7 13:08:38 CDT 2015

On 8/6/2015 8:54 PM, Guy Sotomayor wrote:
> Cool! I've toyed with the idea of getting a larger mainframe (zSeries) 
> but the aspect of trying
> to get and configure storage for it is the main stumbling block.
> I didn't realize how lucky I was with mine until I started hearing 
> about the horror stories from
> others.  I think what helped was that mine wasn't "molested" before I 
> received it.  In addition
> to arriving in the original IBM shipping crate (really?  who keeps 
> that?) it also had all of the
> "extras" in terms of cables, terminators, etc still unopened.  The 
> only thing that I'm missing
> is some of the software and diagnostics that were supplied on either 
> tape or CD.
It may have been packed by IBM for the customer.  This is standard 
service available to mainframe shops.  Most of them who have assets 
which have value get them packaged by IBM either under their current 
maintenance contract, or at extra cost if they are not on their plan.  
The service used to be called MSL, I think, but it has been a long time 
since I dealt with such.

Even if you bought it from a scrapper, the original shops frequently 
just have them packed like that and then rolled off the floor for 
storage, because when IBM packs them they are certified ready to go back 
into service with a lot less if any re-certification charges for 
maintenance.  If you disconnect the components yourself (and who do you 
know in IT does that unless they are getting it for scrap if the 
hardware guys will do it) that can / does void that they can go back 
online w/o a big fee.

IBM dropped a huge bomb on the third party business of doing this and 
trading equipment by making it free in the early 90's which wiped out a 
large number of equipment dealers who were buying / refurbing / 
reselling peripherals.  There were a few bad players, and IBM's take on 
that was to make the profit part for the dealers free, and wiping them 
all out.

I lost the home for my systems when that happened.

> I *really* have to figure out a backup solution for this so that I 
> don't get stuck but that
> supposes that I have a way to re-create the OS/2 image that's already 
> there if I do have to
> do a full from scratch restore.
> TTFN - Guy

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