8. RIO (Institute for the Study of Physics, CBPF/CNPq, Rio de Janeiro) and EMB (EMBRAPA, Brazilian Enterprise for Agricultural Research, Brazilia)

posted Dec 5, 2010, 9:24 PM by Jeff Ogden   [ updated Dec 25, 2011, 10:05 PM ]
The following doesn't really address how MTS came to two sites in Brazil, but it does give a little information about the two sites.


Item 582  16:55 Apr23/80   16 lines    5 responses
Addresses for Brazilian Installations

According to Jeff Ogden, who just returned from there, the correct
addresses for the Brazilian installations are as follows:

   EMB:   Stan Angilley
          Flora Program Supervisor
          CNPq - S.I.P.
          W3 Norte Quadra 507 Bloco B
          70 000 Brasilia  D.F.

   RIO: (This one same as in MTS Newsletter 57 page 2 list)
          Julio L. Botelho
          AV. Wenceslau Bras 71
          CEP 22.290 Rio de Janeiro - RJ


Item 587  21:25 Apr29/80  117 lines    5 responses
What I did for my spring vacation - MTS in Brazil

    As some people already know from Don's  item  in  MTS:FORUM
I've  just  returned from a 15 day visit to the MTS installation
in Rio de Janeiro.  The trip was made at the invitation of Julio
Botelho and CBPF/CNPq.  They paid for my flight down and back as
well as a hotel room and meals during my stay.  In return I gave
several informal talks to their staff  and  one  talk  to  their
users about MTS.

    The  RIO  installation  is  the  second MTS installation in
Brazil.  Currently it is a department (GPD) of an institute  for
the  study of physics (CBPF).  CBPF is in turn an institute of a
national  government  research  organization  (CNPq).   CBPF  is
located  next to the University of Rio de Janeiro, but it has no
formal ties with the university.  However, CBPF  and  the  other
CNPq  institutes  do  accept students who wish to continue their
studies and they do offer  graduate  degrees.   In  addition  to
providing  computing  services to CBPF the RIO installation also
provides  services  to  other  CNPq  institutes,  primarily  the
National Observatory and the mathematics institute.

    The  RIO  installation  is  small.  They run an IBM 370/145
with  127  pages  of  real  memory,  10  locally  attached  3277
displays, two hardwired terminals and two RJE stations connected
to  a 3704 emulating a 270x.  They have 4 3330-I disks connected
to one control  unit  on  two  channels  and  three  2314  disks
connected  to one control unit on one channel.  One 3330 is used
for paging and a 2314 is the HASP spool pack.  They have no 2301
or 2305 paging devices and one of the two channels used for  the
3330s is also used by the 2314s and the magnetic tape equipment.

    There  are  six  people  on the programming staff including
Julio.  Two of  the  programmers  are  experienced  in  assembly
language and the rest are learning.  Everyone on the programming
staff  and  all  of  the users that I met were very enthusiastic
about MTS.  There are some 600 ccids in  the  accounting  files,
but  I  don't  have  a  good  feel for how many individuals this

    They are running a hybrid system made  up  from  a  special
version  of  D4.0  for small machines plus selected updates from
D4.1, D4.2 and  various  RD  tapes.   In  particular  they  have
installed  the  CIDA  updates from SFU.  Because of they way the
IPLREADER and RAMROD work the entire resident  system  must  fit
into real memory.  To keep within this limit everything that can
be loaded by PISTLE (and several things that I wasn't sure could
be  loaded by PISTLE, like the OPERATOR job) have been moved out
of RAMROD and into SEG2:S2FILES.  Even with  these  changes  the
system  is within one page of the real memory limit.  This means
that the only updates that can be applied to  their  system  are
ones  that  don't  increase  the  size  of the system.  Applying
updates using *CDUPDATE is also a bit of a pain on such a  small
paging  bound  system  and  they  are  eagerly awaiting the plus
version of *CDUPDATE from UBC.  They don't have *ASMH,  so  most
recent  updates  have required at least a little modification to
work under *ASMG and some updates have proved almost  impossible
to  convert.   I  tried to make it clear that without *ASMH this
problem would only get worse in the future.

    The system runs with from 8 to 12 active lines and zero  or
one  batch  jobs using between 900 and 1100 virtual pages during
the day.  Maximum paging  activity  is  about  22  page-ins  per
second.   Processor  idle normally runs between 40% and 60% with
the PDP using about half of the  CPU  time.   To  say  that  the
system is badly paging bound is an understatement.

    The  default  global time limit in batch is 1 min.  and the
default local time limit for LSS is 10 secs.  During the day  it
is not uncommon for all of the terminal users to be in LSS.  LSS
is used more to encourage batch use than to balance the terminal
and batch load.

    During  the  next year the RIO installation will become the
major part of a new CNPq institute that will  provide  computing
services  to  the  other CNPq institutes and also do research in
computer science.  As part of this change they hope  to  replace
their  370/145 with a 3031 or a 370/158 with 2Mb of main memory.
With luck this will be done early in 1981.

    The original MTS installation in Brazilia still exists  and
I talked to Stan Angilley on the phone while I was in RIO.  That
machine (also a 145) how has a full megabyte of storage and Stan
is   working   on  installing  the  D4.2  system.   EMBRAPA  has
apparently lost some or all of its funding and they are  selling
time (VS1 time I'd guess) to make ends meet.  Stan didn't say so
directly, but the impression I got from talking to him and Julio
is  that  very  little  MTS work is being done in Brazilia other
than the work on D4.2 by Stan.  Stan wasn't sure if he would  be
able to attend the RPI workshop or not.

    Stan  and  Julio  both mentioned that they have been having
problems getting shipments of tapes  from  Michigan.   It  seems
that  some of the shipments have arrived at ports of entry other
than RIO or Brazilia and that the shipments must be  claimed  at
that port of entry.  This is a little like having something sent
from  UBC  to UM arrive in Miami and having to send someone from
Ann Arbor down to get it.  There doesn't seem to be any  trouble
with  small  tapes  sent through the mails and clearly marked as
having no commercial value.

    Both Stan and Julio think that they have solved the various
bureaucratic problems that have delayed  the  payment  of  their
installations'  part of the MTS distribution costs.  The payment
from the RIO installation should be on its way now  and  payment
from  Brazilia should be on its way as soon as UM can send a new
bill that doesn't include Stan's name.

    Both Julio and Stan have received tentative inquiries about
using MTS from several organizations.  If these  inquires  prove
to  be  serious  they  will  ask  the  organizations involved to
contact Michigan directly.  I agreed to  ask  Dr.   Finerman  to
write  Stan  and  Julio  a  letter  outlining  in  general terms
Michigan's views on how such inquiries  should  be  handled.   I
think  that the RIO installation would like to have a second MTS
installation near by if only to provide a bit of  moral  support
and a larger base of people with MTS experience.

And part of a December 2010 note from Jim Bodwin:

I visited the Rio MTS site to install the latest release under
VM/XA.  They had trouble getting disk controllers there so they had
an old 4381 (4341?) that had an internal disk controller that was
normally connected to the CPU via 2-foot channel cables.  At Rio
they had the cover off the machine and ran channel cables from
their real CPU (3081?) to the internal controller on the 4341.
Very odd.