My first Sun system was a Sun 3/260, that was surplus from DND. Based on what I understand, it was a screw-up on DND’s part, as while the system lacked hard drives, it still was Tempest shielded (and general public is not supposed to gain access to Tempest shielded gear). It wasn’t a “normal” Sun3 – chassis was made out of 2.5mm think steel, each edge had a copper ribbon glued to it, and parts that weren’t openeable in day to day maintenace were kept together by screws every inch or so.

Oh, and it was protected by 3 Medeco locks.

I’ve had lots of fun with it, back in 1993.

But why am I bringing it up?

If you are morbidly fascinated by Sun3 arch and have a bunch of Sun3/60s kicking around, you can get them going.

Some people still maintain an archive of SunOS software for Sun3 arch, and a bunch of pre-built packages. Perl 5.8.8 and OpenSSH 4.2 are some of the things pre-packaged and available for download (which makes the people who run the Sun3 archive officially obsessed). Install instructions are available.

So grab that 12 VME chassis from Sun3/260, and drop in a bunch of Sun3/60 boards, netboot them all, and turn them into a SunOS cluster. You know you want to, and your local electrical utility wants you to too 🙂

P.S. On the subject of Tempest shieded gear – Sun made at least SPARCstation T2, which was SS2 in Tempest shielded chassis, with a weird round connector on the back for the serial port. It was explained to me at the time (many years ago), that a shielded serial cable could be attached to those, to provide serial console.