The Start of an Epic Pentium Pro build

Irinikus

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Here's a disk speed test carried out on the machine:





I really expected it to be faster!!!

I will get a 300GB 15K RPM drive for the machine, but I'm not expecting it to perform miracles!!!
 
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Irinikus

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The problem here is not the drive, but the controller, as its speed limit is 40MB per second!

So I'm going to aim to get one of these cards to complement this card, and run a RAID 0 setup as the system disk, with two 300GB 15K RPM drives attached!



 
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Irinikus

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I managed to get OpenGL up and running on the Matrox Millennium G450. (It required an older driver, as Matrox dropped OpenGL support for these cards with their later driver releases!) I used the: "2kxp_593_009.exe" driver to get it to work!

Here are the results from the Matrox Millennium G450 card running on this Pentium Pro machine @200MHz with 192MB of RAM:





I used MAX SETTINGS @ 800x600:



Not brilliant, but not too bad either!!!!
 

Irinikus

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Which of these to RAID cards will be faster: (Or better for that matter?)

SCSI RAID Disk Array Controller ICP Vortex GDT6538RD 2x68 EXT 3x68 Int 4x68 Int



SMARTRAID VI Decade PM1564U3 Ultra 160 SCSI RAID Controller

 

Irinikus

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I' going to be purchasing two 36 GB Hitachi Ultrastar, 15K73 series, model DK32EK-36NW / HUS157336EL3600 drives from the same seller as I'm purchasing the RAID card from.



Eliminating the need for 68-pin to 80-pin adapters. It's going to be a RAID 0 setup, and I'd like the best data/electrical connection possible for this purpose, as the adapters can come loose in my experience, however it is going to cost me a bit more for these drives.
 
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Irinikus

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The case arrived today and I immediately pulled out the Pentium III system that it had installed, cleaned the case and installed the Pentium Pro system!

I scored two additional cards from the Pentium III, namely a Creative SoundBlaster Live and a US Robotics modem!

The SoundBlaster Live will be removed when the AWE 64 Gold eventually arrives from Italy, freeing up a PCI slot for the U160 RAID card

Here's the inside of the system as it currently stands:



I'm still going to figure out the pinout of the proprietary front panel connector and wire it to the motherboard:



For now I've put a jumper across the Power Pins, allowing me to power the system up using the main switch on the power supply:





I haven't fitted the IO shield as yet, as I'll have to get it cut down to size in order for it to fit properly:



She's a bit of an ugly duckling at the moment with the black SCSI CD-ROM fitted, but I'll get a beige one in due course:



Here's the Hardware configuration as it currently stands:

 
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Jacques

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What I love about systems from this era was the shear number of companies and manufacturers vying for consumers with competing technologies and hardware platforms. Intel, AMD, Cyrix, ATI, Matrox, Creative, SiS, HP, Dell, Gateway, 3Dfx etc. but it was the competing technologies that really made this era interesting.
 
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Irinikus

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As a matter of interest, this system has cost me the following amount so far: ($1324,74 Including shipping costs)

$463.07 $ - Motherboard + CPU
$130.38 $ - Matrox millennium
$220 $ - Creative AWE 64 Gold
$307.94 $ - Case
$203.35 $ - Nvidia GT 430

I got the Adaptec 2940UW Pro from @Jacques as a free gift, so a big thanks to him!!!!

I'm still going to be purchasing the following components: (And possibly an FX5500, if the GT430 doesn't work in this system)

- SCSI CD-ROM (beige)
- Jazz Drive
- ICP 32-BIt 33MHz PCI - Wide/Ultra 160 RAID card
- Two 36 GB Hitachi Ultrastar, 15K73 series, model DK32EK-36NW / HUS157336EL3600 drives
- 768MB high density EDO RAM
- Pentium II Overdrive chip

So these things are not that cheap to build, especially if you have to import all of the parts individually!!!! (It should end up at +- $2200 to $2500)

IT WILL BE A BEAST!!!
 
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Irinikus

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Is the "Pentium II Overdrive chip" this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentium_OverDrive ?
Is it some sort of an addon or basically a replacement for the existing CPU?
That's exactly what it is!

Besides being an improved core, the Pentium II Overdrive chip runs at 333MHz instead of the 200MHz that this chip runs at and it will also give the system MMX technology and better 16-BIT application support.

Unlike the Pentium II's cache which runs at half the CPU speed, the Pentium II Overdrive's cache runs at the full CPU speed! (333MHz!!!)
 

Jacques

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Very neat! My original AMD K6-200 system ran so hot I had to make a hole in the side of the case and install another fan. I did end up having it spray painted with 2 pack paint in the same colour as the Indigo :) Affording a SGI in SA in those days was but a dream.
 

Irinikus

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The ZOTAC GeForce GT430 arrived today, but it doesn't work in this system at all!!!



I even tried fitting the GT430 along with the Matrox Millennium G450, allowing me to boot all the way into Windows XP with the GT430 fitted, and windows didn't see it at all!!!

I tested the card in the Alienware Area 51 7500 machine and it worked perfectly!!!!

So FX5500 it will have to be unfortunately!!! Or Maybe a Voodoo5 PCI, if I can get my hands on one!
 
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Irinikus

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The Creative AWE64 Gold arrived today!



I gave it a good clean and slotted it, and it works perfectly!

Here's the current system configuration:



I'm currently just waiting for the U160 RAID controller and the two drives to arrive from Germany!
 
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