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Welcome to the OpenVMS™ Alpha Evaluation Kit Information Page.

*** Register here to download the Alpha Evaluation Kit.***

VSI is happy to announce the availability of the VSI OpenVMS Alpha Evaluation Kit. Included with the kit is a free license that will expire on September 30, 2017.

The kit, VSI OpenVMS Alpha X8.4-2, can be run on any Alpha platform. You must upgrade from HPE OpenVMS Alpha V8.3 or a later OpenVMS Alpha release. Please note:

   • Fresh (from-scratch) installations or upgrades from releases prior to HPE OpenVMS V8.3 are NOT allowed.

   • There is no associated Layered Product kit. (If VSI decides to have Alpha releases then there will be a VSI-produced Layered Product kit.)

   • Upgrading to VSI OpenVMS X8.4-2 uses the same procedures as upgrading OpenVMS releases in the past. The Alpha Installation Guide is available for reference on the VSI website.

   • This evaluation kit must NOT be used in a production environment.

   • VSI strongly recommends that you make a copy of your system disk prior to beginning an upgrade.

Please inform VSI if you are running HPE OpenVMS V7.3-2 and would be interested in new VSI OpenVMS Alpha releases.


The VSI OpenVMS Alpha X8.4-2 upgrade includes rebranding of all products in the OPENVMS platform. It also includes rebranding of all layered products that are VSI-produced on Integrity as of Version 8.4-2. For the evaluation kit, the only effect of this is in the PRODUCT SHOW PRODUCT and PRODUCT SHOW HISTORY displays. It does not affect functionality of any of the layered products previously installed.

The following software components found in previous HPE Alpha releases are not included in the Alpha Evaluation Kit and will not be included in VSI Alpha releases.

   • Asynchronous Transfer Method (ATM)

   • PL1RTL

   • CDSA

   • VAX-to-Alpha Binary Translator


Execute the command procedure EVAL-PAKS-VSI-ALPHA.COM to apply the following PAKs.

   • OPENVMS-ALPHA (base operating system)

   • VMSCLUSTER (VMScluster)

   • UCX (TCP/IP)

   • DVNETEXT (DECnet Phase v)

Platform Experience:

VSI has been running OpenVMS Alpha X8.4-2 on DS10, DS15, DS20, ES45 and ES47 in its test clusters. VSI is especially interested in feedback about other Alpha platforms. Note that VSI has done no testing with OpenVMS VAX clustered with OpenVMS Alpha and welcomes any relevant feedback.

Layered Products and Compilers:

Do not attempt to install existing layered products after upgrading to the evaluation kit since such installations will likely check for HP as the product producer. The procedure SYS$UPDATE: VSI$CVT_KIT_DEPENDENCY.COM can be used to create a version of a kit that checks for VSI VMS instead. Note: This is not guaranteed to work in all cases.

Existing HPE Layered Products as well as customer applications and ISV products should continue to work without change. An exception is software that specifically checks for HP as the “producer” of the operating system.

VSI Alpha releases would support

   • The existing JAVA version available on Alpha but nothing newer

   • Compiler versions equivalent to those available on HPE OpenVMS V8.4 Alpha plus bug fixes


There is no support from HPE for this VSI OpenVMS Alpha evaluation kit or layered products.

There is no official VSI support or commitment for the Alpha Evaluation Kit in terms of specific defect repair or regular updates. VSI is primarily interested in feedback but VSI will certainly help if a situation warrants it.

Many of the Alpha Evaluation Kit caveats and shortcomings will be removed in real field tests and final production releases. For example, there would be a VSI- produced and supported Layered Product Kit.


VSI is extremely interested in feedback regarding the I/O devices and layered products used by Alpha customers interested in future Alpha releases. Please provide VSI with software and hardware configuration information, and other comments, by sending mail to


Please go to the main Products page of this website and read the VSI OpenVMS V8.4-2 Cover Letter and Release Notes for the Itanium release. Except for those items directly related to the Itanium architecture, Itanium hardware platforms, and the Layered Product kit, the information should be generally applicable to Alpha. Check the VSI website during the next few months for more Alpha Evaluation Kit news.