About This Guide

This guide provides information on using and administering your SGI Onyx 3000 rackmount graphics system. Although there several different models in the SGI Onyx 3000 system family, this guide refers to the products generically as SGI Onyx 3000 series graphics systems.

Warning: Before installing, operating, or servicing any part of this product, please read the “Safety Instructions” in Appendix B.

Product Features

Some of the graphics rack system features include:

  • Enhanced modularity and scalability of all compute and I/O options.

  • Increased system and memory bandwidth with reduced latency over Silicon Graphics Onyx2.

  • More high-availability, reliability, and redundancy features than with Silicon Graphics Onyx2.

  • Higher serviceability levels that result in faster diagnostic and repair time.

The following topics are covered in this manual:

  • Chapter 1, “Introducing the SGI Onyx 3000 Series Graphics Systems”, describes the graphics rack system and its components, capabilities, and options. A brief overview of the graphics system's compute and interface capabilities is provided. This chapter also describes the various SGI Onyx 3000 series graphic system models available.

  • Chapter 2, “G–brick, V–brick, and N–brick”, provides detailed descriptions of the functions of these bricks, including identification of their hardware components.

  • Chapter 3, “Configurations and Cabling”, gives an overview on cabling the graphics system including cabling cautions and warnings. It provides examples of single-rack and multirack graphics system configurations. It also covers the cabling connections of monitors, keyboard and mouse, speakers, and the Ethernet.

  • Chapter 4, “Using the SGI Onyx 3000 Series Graphics System”, gives basic information on using the Onyx 3000 series rack systems, including system maintenance and safety, using your monitor, connecting a keyboard and mouse to the I–brick, and instructions on powering on and off your system. It also references SGI Origin 3000 Series Owner's Guide for instructions to add PCI cards or storage disks to enhance the use of your graphics system, and instructions to connect a system console to your system.

  • Chapter 5, “Customer-replaceable Units”, describes installation and replacement procedures for the G-brick (L1) controller, L1 controller display panel, and cosmetic facade components.

  • Chapter 6, “Graphics System Controllers”, describes the L1 brick-level controller, including descriptions of the status messages it displays. This chapter also describes the L2 rack-level controller, including the connectors on its interface panel and its L2 controller touch display.

  • Appendix A, “Technical Specifications”, lists the specifications for the short 17U rack and the tall 39U rack enclosures and physical and power specifications for the bricks.

  • Appendix B, “Regulatory Specifications”, lists all regulatory information related to the use of SGI Onyx 3000 graphics systems in the United States and other countries. This appendix also lists important safety instructions in operating, maintaining, and installing components for this product.

Additional Information

SGI manuals are available in various formats on the web at the following URL:


Enter a keyword search, or search by title to find the information or manual you need.

Start at the beginning of this guide to familiarize yourself with the features of your new system, or use the table of contents to proceed directly to the information you need. For more detailed hardware information on the SGI 3000 family of servers and visualization systems, see SGI Origin 3000 Series Owner's Guide.

Software-specific information is found in the following software guides:

  • IRIX Admin: System Configuration and Operation 

  • IRIX Admin: Software Installation and Licensing 

Conventions and Terminology

This guide uses the following conventions:

  • References to document titles are in italics.

  • Commands and names of files appear in text as courier non-italics.

  • References to other chapters and sections within this guide are in quotation marks.

  • Anything that you type on your keyboard is in Courier bold.

  • Anything displayed on the screen is in Courier.

  • Steps to perform tasks are in numbered sentences. When a numbered step needs more explanation, the explanation follows the step and is preceded by a square bullet.

  • Warning text that describes conditions that could cause injury or death is highlighted with the icon in Figure i.

    Figure 1. Injury or Death Warning Icon

    Injury or Death Warning Icon

  • Caution text that describes conditions that could cause equipment damage or major data loss is highlighted with the icon in Figure ii.

    Figure 2. Equipment Damage or Data Loss Warning Icon

    Equipment Damage or Data Loss Warning Icon