Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby furan » 2017-12-10 @ 02:01

The processors showed up today.

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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby Jade Falcon » 2017-12-10 @ 22:27

Looking good!

That monitor keyboard combination looks cool.
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby feipoa » 2017-12-11 @ 02:33

I have that chassis, though mine came with a Dell Precision Workstation 410. I bought it new in Dec. 1998. I ordered it with dual PII-400 and 128 MB RAM. Came with a Permedia2 AGP card. The PII-450 was top of the line at the time, but the price tag for an extra 50 MHz was excessive. This is one of my favourite cases to date. The motherboards came with a 64-bit PCI option for RAID cards, and only RAID cards (it is not a PCI-X slot). Unfortunately, I have had trouble getting any 64-bit Dell RAID card working properly in this slot. Not sure why. Have you tried out this unique 64-bit PCI slot? My Dell 410 now has 1 GB of buffered CL2 SDRAM and dual PIII-850's. dual PIII-1GHz's work, but are not long-term stable for some reason. I run mine with a GF3 now.

Fascinating keyboard. Wonder how the sound quality is coming out of those integrated speakers.

I always found the inverted naming of the 3COM cards really confusing when looking for drivers.

You sure that SATAII PCI-X RAID card will work in the Dell 610? On the Dell 410, there is a few pin difference between PCI-X and the proprietary 64-bit PCI RAID. I believe the official name for that special 64-bit RAID slot is called "RAIDport II" or "RAIDport III". I have this pencil written in my Dell 410 manual: "RAIDport III connector to be used with Adaptec ARO-1130CA. ARO-1130CA is designed for use with Adaptec AIC-7890 or AIC-7896. The card's BIOS is set for either the 7890 or 7896, not both. ARO-1130CA is the Dell OEM name for the retail card ARO-1130U2." This paragraph is the result of extensive research I did on this topic a few years ago. So if your board is like the 410 board, you'd need to use a standard PCI card for SATA. If I recall correctly, I've used the Adaptec 2410SA successfully in mine, however, I've gone back to using the integrated SCSI UltraWide2 LVD port. There may be some SCSI to SATA bridge adapters you can use. Have you looked into this?

How much did it cost to ship that Dell 610? Those things are heavy.

Good idea to keep private the amount spent. Publicising it only drives up the prices.

Slick looking Sun Micro CRT. My 410 came with a 17" Dell multisync. It eventually developed issues in 2003 and was tossed out. I used that monitor everyday from '98 to '03, so I got my use out of it. Your keyboard and Sun monitor go especially well together. Are they not faded at all?
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby furan » 2017-12-11 @ 21:39

Mine came with a TNT2 - a Diamond v770, and it's hard to want to remove it and replace with a year-correct 330 (riva 128). I tried that slot (more on that in a bit). They keyboard has amazing bass response - it has a bit of line noise from my wireless mouse, but sounds pretty good when it is pumping out audio. Yeah, 3COM is weird. So I got the wrong card (honestly I am still confused) and of course it didn't fit. Only out $18 though. I ended up using a 64GB PATA SSD. Windows 98 SE is happy with it, and it's fast enough. I'll keep digging for a way to use SATA - maybe SCSI to SATA like you suggested. Shipping the machine was $40, and it was well packed. I think I've spent too much! The Sun CRT is based off a Sony one - it's really nice. Supports 1600x1200@75hz, and does multisync just fine. Neither the keyboard nor the monitor look faded, or have areas where they are faded, so I'm thinking they either faded uniformly or haven't faded at all.
Thanks!
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby feipoa » 2017-12-11 @ 23:58

That weird PCI-X-looking slot is called a RAIDport II or RAIDport III connector and is intended for a very specific RAID card. That specific RAID card is designed to work with your motherboard's onboard Adaptec SCSI controller/ports. That specific RAID card, e.g. ARO-1130CA, has no SCSI connectors on it. Hope this clears it up a bit.
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby furan » 2017-12-12 @ 03:09

feipoa wrote:That weird PCI-X-looking slot is called a RAIDport II or RAIDport III connector and is intended for a very specific RAID card. That specific RAID card is designed to work with your motherboard's onboard Adaptec SCSI controller/ports. That specific RAID card, e.g. ARO-1130CA, has no SCSI connectors on it. Hope this clears it up a bit.

Thanks!
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby m1919 » 2017-12-14 @ 07:01

You got a nice project going here!

I have a Dell Precision 620 MT (case sadly damaged in shipping) and the guts, all working.

Mine came with with a single P3 Xeon 1Ghz + both RDRAM riser cards fully populated with 8 RDIMMS (I believe 128 MB sticks, has been a while since it last ran) + Fire GL2. I added the missing Xeon later.

Love these Slot-2 machines. I've got an SGI Visual Workstation 550 as well, same i840 chipset and various other Slot-2 boards.

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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby feipoa » 2017-12-14 @ 08:02

Does the 620MT actually have PCI-X slots, or is that three RAIDport III connectors?
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby m1919 » 2017-12-14 @ 15:58

feipoa wrote:Does the 620MT actually have PCI-X slots, or is that three RAIDport III connectors?


Manual says one port is shared for RAID functionality:

Expansion Slots
The Dell Precision 620 system provides six PCI 2.2-compliant expansion slots on two peer buses. Four 32-bit slots (1, 2, 3, and 4) are on the
primary PCI bus. One or two of these slots may be used with the AGP Pro connector. Slot 4 is shared with the RAID port function. Two 64-bit slots
(5 and 6) are on the secondary PCI bus.
You can install a properly keyed universal PCI expansion card in either the 32-bit (5-volt [V], 33-megahertz [MHz]) or 64-bit (3.3-V, 66- or 33-MHz)
PCI expansion slots. Either of the 64-bit expansion slots will accept a properly keyed 32-bit expansion card without affecting the other 64-bit
expansion slot; however, if you install a 33-MHz expansion card in either 64-bit expansion slot, the other 64-bit expansion slot operates at 33 MHz
also.


Looks like no PCI-X.
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby feipoa » 2017-12-14 @ 20:27

64-bit (3.3-V, 66- or 33-MHz)

Is that saying you can run 64-bit and 66 MHz? If so, that looks a lot like PCI-X to me.
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby m1919 » 2017-12-15 @ 06:19

feipoa wrote:
64-bit (3.3-V, 66- or 33-MHz)

Is that saying you can run 64-bit and 66 MHz? If so, that looks a lot like PCI-X to me.


I believe PCI-X from this board's time-frame would support up to 133 MHz.
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby furan » 2017-12-15 @ 08:02

Wow, nice system!
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Re: Senior Year: My 1997/1998 dream system (build log)

Postby m1919 » 2017-12-16 @ 00:36

furan wrote:Wow, nice system!


Can't wait to see yours up and running; these old Precision Workstations were some of best looking machines of that era.
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