Display Resolution on the B-style box

The AW-51B on the Sun SPARC-5 uses the default resolution of 1152×900 for its screen. Replacing that standard monitor with more “industry standard” CRT or LCD monitors can be a chore as those supporting this resolution are scarce or expensive.

The TurboGX Frame Buffer supplied on this box supports the following resolutions and frequencies:

    1152 x 900 at 76 Hz
    1152 x 900 at 66 Hz
    1024 x 768 at 77 Hz
    1024 x 768 at 60 Hz

First, of course, you need a screen which supports one of these combinations. (We have even found that at least one LCD screen maker supports the default 1152×900.) The standard connector on the B box is called a 13W3 and non-Sun consoles will probably need a 13W3 to VGA adaptor (commercially available).

If you connect up your new monitor and it syncs up ok, well, you are done. So advance to the “Good Luck” at the bottom of the page. Else, you need to change the resolution that the processor uses to drive the screen.

To change this setting you will enter a string at the off-line “ok>” prompt. To get there, either shut down, sync and halt the box, or reboot and hit “STOP-A” early on in the reboot process.

Next type the following at the “ok>” prompt:

    setenv output-device screen:r1024x768x60

or some similar combination of numbers which represents your particular screen.

If you’d prefer to avoid working at the “ok>” (FORTH Toolkit) prompt, open a VT100 window and type the command:

    eeprom output-device screen:r1024x768x60

(substituting your resolution and refresh numbers for the ones above). This change will take effect on reboot. To get a listing of your eeprom settings, just type the command “eeprom” with no parameters.

Now reboot the system.

Good Luck.

William C Ricker
FeedForward, Inc.

But wait, there’s more!

If your B box has second video, setting that will require a little more work. See the Framebuffer FAQ for details at: http://www.sunhelp.org/faq/FrameBuffer.html#2b

Some other useful stuff:

1) To find details on the current framebuffers, type prtconf -vp and scroll through the output until you find the nodes that have device_type: ‘display’. To decode this somewhat esoteric information, see again the Framebuffer FAQ above. A few tidbits — montype shows your monitor sense code (see table below), and vfreq shows your frequency in hertz (hex) so 0000004c = 76.

2) In a B box you have three sbus slots. ls -l /dev/fb0</t> and <tt>ls -l /dev/fb1 should show you which framebuffers (cgsix0, 1 or 2) your two screens use, and ls -l /dev/fbs/cgsix# (where # is 0, 1 or 2) should show you what physical device those are.

3) You can also browse the messages files: dmesg | egrep ‘(cgthree|cgsix)’ to see your video cards.

Sense code table: In most cases you shouldn’t have to set the video resolution. Default resolution is set by returned sense code according to the following:

    Code    TGXplus(1)      TGX(2)          GXplus          GX (LSC chip)
    7       1152x900x66     1152x900x66     1152x900x66     1152x900x66
    6       1152x900x76     1152x900x76     1152x900x76     1152x900x76
    5       1024x768x60     1024x768x60     1152x900x66     1152x900x66
    4       1152x900x76     1152x900x76     1280x1024x67    1152x900x76
    3       1152x900x66     1152x900x66     1152x900x66     1152x900x66
    2       1280x1024x76    1152x900x66     don't use       don't use
    1       1600x1280x76    1152x900x66     don't use       don't use
    0       1024x768x77     1024x768x77     1152x900x66     1152x900x66

Typically the system will assume sense code 4 when a real sense code cannot be read.

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