HECnet is a DECnet that connects different people who play around with
different machines that have the DECnet protocol suite.
The network should not be regarded as a serious
networking setup, nor should it be expected to work 24/7. It's a hobby
project between people who think it's fun to create a DECnet network.
HECnet is basically a DECnet phase IV network. Currently, the main router is a PDP-11 running RSX-11M-PLUS. The machine is located in Uppsala, Sweden.
The connectivity between nodes can be anything that works. The current connectivity is with an ethernet bridge between sites, DECnet over IP using Multinet on VMS or RSX, and DECnet over IP on Cisco. Other solutions that have been used are a virtual serial async. connection talking DDCMP. Other possibilities are GRE and DECnet over IP.
How do I get connected?
In order to connect to HECnet, you need to talk with the resposible
person (currently that is Johnny
about allocating a node name and number. The node names in DECnet phase
IV must be unique within the whole network, so this have to be coordinated.
(Well, technically, you can have local node names defined for machines
at every node in DECnet, but that isn't much fun, is it?)
Secondly, you need a node number. What number depends on where you get
After that, you need to set up a connection to whatever DECnet router you should be connected to. How this is done depends on what kind of connection you will have.
An ethernet bridge will require a separate Unix machine on the same ethernet segment as your DECnet machines, which then bridges your ethernet with the rest of HECnet. This is not a full bridge, but only one that transmits packets for DECnet, so the rest of the network is not compromised. On this Unix computer, you need to compile, configure and run the ethernet bridge program, which can be found >>here<<. The configuration requires that you talk with someone else running the bridge, and agreeing on some parameters for the bridge. You should probably join the HECnet mailing list at this stage before expecting things to start working.
If you want more information, you can write a mail to Johnny Billquist <firstname.lastname@example.org> and ask about whatever you want to know. There is also a mailing list, <email@example.com> for discussions about HECnet. To join you write to <firstname.lastname@example.org>, and the body of the mail should contain "subscribe hecnet" in it.
What does HECnet mean?
Well, we had problems coming up with a good name, and just for the heck of it, it was named HECnet (that is also pretty close in sounding to DECnet).
Here is a short list of links that people might enjoy: