Running IPv6 on 4.4BSD – Summer 2012 Retrochallenge entry

I’m entering the summer Retrochallenge which runs throughout July, the plan is to get an emulated host running with 4.4BSD-lite connected via IPv6 using the NRL patches & if possible serving a basic webpage over HTTP or fail at it & either way document the journey in this post.
It will be a good opportunity to visit the early implementation of IPv6 & learn about the origin of this stack, IPv6 is sexy right? or is that DNS??
I was unaware of the existence of these patches & assumed KAME was the original implementation until I was pointed to the USENIX paper by fellow tweep Dan McDonald.
Looking forward to doing some digging for information & patches 🙂
To fit the challenge rules, the host the emulation will run on will be a Cobalt Qube2 with NetBSD/Cobalt.

Before I started to attempt building things I did some research on what was required & if the patches and any documentation was still around.
Sun Microsystems IPng Implmentations page is still available on though the NRL IPv6+IPsec is long gone, I was able to obtain the patch sets from the RIPE FTP server
The installing & operating 4.4BSD UNIX section of UNIX System Manager’s Manual (SMM) lists the supported platforms by 4.4BSD, I hadn’t realised that VAX was not a officially supported platform in this release by CSRG, the 3 official supported platforms which binaries are shipped for being the HP, DECstation & SPARC platforms, this means that simh is off the list & it’s a toss up between tme & GXemul, I’ve not played with GXemul before but tried the Sun3 emulation on tme a few years back in an attempt to get SunOS 4.x but failed after not getting the disk setup right.
I found a copy of the 4.4BSD-Lite CD ISO files on Poul-Henning Kamps website.
Next step is to get a virtual machine up & running with 4.4BSD-Lite, I’m probably going to start with the DECstation (MIPS) emulation on GXemul & move onto SPARC on tme if things don’t work out. The README with patches states the patches were built on SPARC but I’m hoping this isn’t an issue (endianness?).

My CSRG archives cd set is here, this week will be a cram as I play catch up.
Front cover for CSRG Archives cd set

Back cover for CSRG Archives CD set

One Reply to “Running IPv6 on 4.4BSD – Summer 2012 Retrochallenge entry”

  1. I’m humored by this. Having just brought up a BSD 4.3 instance under simh, it is funny to think of this monster running IPv6.

    Keep up the good work!

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