The following suite of diagnostic words provide easy access to specific areas within the kernel, via the operator port, to assist in both commissioning and fault finding:


displays the node name and message received by the kernel from the ethernet port. Employed for checking that the message has been passed on by the network layer as well as diagnosing kernel processing of that message.


displays all 6 entries in the monitor-mode request list MON-LIST along with their request type (1 or 2).


displays all 4 entries in the write-only status (immediate and delayed) request list STATREQ.


All the fields in the PRESENTSTATUS table for the specified mechanism are displayed in a tabular form. Each parameter is displayed using its correct numerical base along with it's field identification label.


displays the number of resets and communication timeouts for all serial links in a tabular form, labelling each link with its corresponding module name. These values may also be transmitted across ethernet to the VAX System Computer by employing the health monitor status command, HMS200. A history may then be built up for each module, enabling suspect units to be weeded out of the system.


requires the mechanism mnemonic number on the stack prior to executing this word. It displays the work space RAMSLINK for specified serial link. Employed when faults occur on serial link e.g. #ERROR byte field can show framing, parity and overrun errors indicating wrong baudrates etc. See section on communication software.


requires the mechanism mnemonic number on the stack prior to executing this word. It displays the serial communication receive buffer for specified links. See section on communication software.


lists all the instrument's mechanism mnemonics. Employed as an aide-memoire.


displays which serial links are faulty. This automatically occurs on powerup/reset of the 4MS but may be requested at any time through the operators port. No output given if all links are OK.


Provides the ability to enter a single ethernet message (which may contain several instrument commands) via the operator port. It initially shuts the ethernet tasks down in an orderly fashion to prevent two sources of messages using the same internal buffer resources. The operator is prompted for the required message which is terminated by a carriage return. The kernel then processes the message in exactly the same way as for a message received via the ethernet port. Finally the ethernet tasks are reactivated followed by a NET101 execution to flush the network software layer. Under LOCAL operation status requests (immediate or delayed) will result in status replies being sent to the node who last sent a command via the ethernet port. It is therefore advised to omit all status requests when employing the LOCAL mode.

A shorthand version is available in the from | (pipe).


requires the mechanism mnemonic number on the stack prior to executing this word. The SMDM protocol header is displayed, informing the operator which box# and motor# the specified mechanism is attached to. The commands required to enable the echo mode and to terminate the TRANSPARENT mode are also included:

a) Transparent to Smdm C Motor 2

To enable echo : UNSEAL

To return to 4MS : 4MS

Additional mnemonic constant, BCR, is defined to gain access to the barcode reader module ( BCRM ).

The kernel shuts down all status MAINTAIN, JOB and ethernet tasks in an orderly fashion, then revectors the interrupt routine and enables the serial link interrupt ready for transparent operation. This state is indicated by :

Application halted

being displayed when commands may now be entered via the operator terminal.

Refer to the corresponding manuals for description of the commands available for each module. On termination of transparent mode the interrupt routine is revectored and all the tasks are reactivated. Resumption of normal operation is indicated by the message :

Application restarted

appearing on the operator terminal.

All modules employing the 6303 processor card ( SMDM and BCRM ) must be correctly sealed up by their word '4MS' before returning to normal kernel operation otherwise all subsequent communications with the module will result in continuous timeouts due to unexpected strings being received.

A shorthand version of TRANSPARENT is available in the form TT.