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Date:      Wed, 3 Jan 1996 20:53:57 -0600 (CST)
From:      bugs@freebsd.netcom.com (Mark Hittinger)
To:        questions@freebsd.org
Subject:   Re: LAT support (fwd)
Message-ID:  <199601040253.UAA09723@freebsd.netcom.com>

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> From: Nate Williams <nate@rocky.sri.MT.net>
> To: Don Whiteside <freelist@elf.kendall.mdcc.edu>
> >   Someone just dropped an old DECserver 200/MC on my lap that would be 
> > nice to use for some cruddy little dialup, but it (a) needs a loader for 
> > the software when it boots up and (2) only does LAT connection. Anyone 
> > ever program any LAT support for FreeBSD?
> Nope, and if I remember correctly DEC won't release the specs on LAT, so
> it will probably never happen.
> DECnet may happen, LAT won't.

Actually the specs for both DECNET, LAT, MAP, DDCMP, etc are fully available.

I think there might also be an image for the DECserver-200 that supports 
TCP/IP in addition to (or rather than) LAT.

In the heyday of VAX/VMS world domination there were a couple of third party
LAT software systems and third party DECNET implementations.  I remember 
setting up LAT on an SCO-Xenix system :-) 

Some of us reverse engineered the protocol using a combination of an
article that appeared in the Digital Technical Journal and a few header
files that appeared in older versions of Ultrix.  Later programs were
donated to DECUS which "sniffed" LAT protocol.  Sources too.

Now that the financial value of these implementations are rather grim...I wonder
if it might be possible to get one of them into the public domain.  I will check
with one of the guys I know who implemented a portable LAT driver.

We might wind up with another problem with the FreeBSD ethernet drivers.  We
would then be in a situation where we might have several packet drivers needing
access to the same ethernet device.

I could easily see TCP/IP, Novell, DECNET, LAD, and LAT running in some larger
corporate environments.  Under Windows, this is a nightmare with much gnashing
of teeth.

VMS handled this better, but you had to start the system in a particular
order or things would not work.

I wonder if FreeBSD's ethernet capability is ready for this scenario?
Time to go read some code :-)

Regards,

Mark Hittinger
Netcom/Dallas
bugs@freebsd.netcom.com



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