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Title: Sun-3  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Sun Microsystems, Sun386i, Sun-2, Sun-4, SPARC
Collection: 1985 Introductions, 68K Microprocessors, Sun Servers, Sun Workstations
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


A Sun 3/60 workstation with disk and tape

Sun-3 was the name given to a series of UNIX computer workstations and servers produced by Sun Microsystems, launched on September 9, 1985.[1] The Sun-3 series were VMEbus-based systems similar to some of the earlier Sun-2 series, but using the Motorola 68020 microprocessor, in combination with the Motorola 68881 floating-point co-processor (optional on the Sun 3/50) and a proprietary Sun MMU. Sun-3 systems were supported in SunOS versions 3.0 to 4.1.1_U1 and also have current support in NetBSD and Linux.[2]


  • Sun-3 models 1
  • Sun-3x 2
  • See also 3
  • Sun timeline 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Sun-3 models

Models are listed in approximately chronological order.

Model Codename CPU board CPU MHz Max. RAM Chassis
3/75 Carrera Sun 3004 16.67 MHz 8 MB 2-slot VME (desktop)
3/140 Carrera Sun 3004 16.67 MHz 16 MB 3-slot VME (desktop/side)
3/160 Carrera Sun 3004 16.67 MHz 16 MB 12-slot VME (deskside)
3/180 Carrera Sun 3004 16.67 MHz 16 MB 12-slot VME (rackmount)
3/150 Carrera Sun 3004 16.67 MHz 16 MB 6-slot VME (deskside)
3/50 Model 25 - 15.7 MHz 4 MB "wide Pizza-box" desktop
3/110 Prism - 16.67 MHz 12 MB 3-slot VME (desktop/side)
3/260 Sirius Sun 3200 25 MHz (CPU), 20 MHz (FPU) 32 MB 12-slot VME (deskside)
3/280 Sirius Sun 3200 25 MHz (CPU), 20 MHz (FPU) 32 MB 12-slot VME (rackmount)
3/60 Ferrari - 20 MHz 24 MB "wide Pizza-box" desktop
3/E Polaris Sun 3/E 20 MHz 16 MB none (6U VME board)

(Max. RAM sizes may be greater when third-party memory board were used).


A Sun 3/80 workstation

In 1989, coincident with the launch of the SPARCstation 1, Sun launched three new Sun-3 models, the 3/80, 3/470 and 3/480. Unlike previous Sun-3s, these used a Motorola 68030 processor, 68882 floating-point unit, and the 68030's integral MMU. This 68030-based architecture was called Sun-3x.

Model Codename CPU board CPU MHz Max. RAM Chassis
3/80 Hydra - 20 MHz 16, 40 or 64 MB "Pizza-box" desktop
3/460 Pegasus Sun 3400 33 MHz 128 MB 12-slot VME (deskside, older design)
3/470 Pegasus Sun 3400 33 MHz 128 MB 12-slot VME (deskside, newer design )
3/480 Pegasus Sun 3400 33 MHz 128 MB 12-slot VME (rackmount)

Sun 3/260s upgraded with Sun 3400 CPU boards were known as Sun 3/460s.

See also

Sun timeline


  1. ^ New Sun Workstations Lead Industry In System Performance, Press Release, Jackie Rae/Lorrie Duval, Sun Microsystems
  2. ^ Linux/sun3 This page contains some pointers and references to getting Linux running properly on the Sun 3/xx line of workstations/servers.

External links

  • Sun Microsystems
  • The Sun Hardware Reference, Part 1
  • Sun Field Engineer Handbook, 20th edition
  • Peter's Sun3 Zoo
  • Obsolyte! — Fan site for old Unix Workstations, including Sun machines
  • ILVSUN3 — Emulate a Sun3 on modern PC hardware
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