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March 09, 2010

Of safe names, and safer 3000 documents

I've read about that Florida site where the system manager passed away without much notice. It sounds like documentation is pretty important in that kind of crisis. What do you recommend as a minimum?

Paul Edwards of Paul Edwards & Associates replies:

There are a couple of papers in PDF format that can be downloaded that deal with documentation that
every HP 3000 site should have on hand for these kinds of situations. The contents of a System Manager Notebook include hardware and software information that is vital to recovering your system in any type of disaster. The rest of the company’s busines operating procedures has to be combined with the IS plan to form a comprehensive corporate disaster recovery contingency plan.

The Notebook contains hardware model and serial numbers; license agreements for all software and hardware; a copy of all current maintenance agreements, equipment warranty information, complete applications documentation of program logic; data file layouts and system interaction, along with system operator run books and any other appropriate documentation. There is a wealth of information contained in each HP 3000 that can be printed and stored offsite that is critical to a recovery effort.

I'm trying to figure out what characters are really safe to use in file names in the HFS namespace. I was recently surprised to learn that the percent character has problems in MPE.  If I STORE and RESTORE a file with a percent sign in its name, it seems that the percent sign and all following characters are dropped from the name. To be completely safe, do I need to restrict myself to uppercase and lowercase letters, digits, and underscores? 

Cathlene McCrae of HP Support replies:

The help file for the build command in the HP 3000 reports incorrectly that file names can begin with or contain any of the following characters: a-z, A-Z, 0-9, _, ., ~, `, $, %, ^, *, {, },+,|,:

THE HP 3000 manuals and the online file command’s help have the correct character set, which is:

a-z, A-Z, 0-9, underscore, dash and period.

This a-z, A-Z, 0-9, underscore, dash and period is the character set that I would recommend, since it is compatible with  most of the other operating systems -- including Windows.

01:27 PM in Hidden Value, Homesteading | Permalink

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