VOGONS


The Budget 1997 OS/2 Warp PC

Topic actions

Reply 20 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

Well, the 20GB Seagate Hard Drive I tried also did not register, but on a whim I also tried a 20GB Samsung from 2003 and whaddyaknow..

AMD-K5-PR166-Hard-Drive-Detection.jpg

So before I know it I was installing MS-DOS 6.22 on a 512MB Primary partition.

AMD-K5-PR166-MS-DOS-Install.jpg

And it lives!

AMD-K5-PR133-First-Boot.jpg

I have absolutely no clue how to partition a 20GB drive for DOS-OS/2-Linux triple boot 😀 So I will start out like this:

Samsung 20GB
+- C: Primary FAT16
| [MS-DOS] 512MB
+- Extended
.+- D: Logical HPFS
.| [OS/2 Warp] 512MB
.+- E: Logical HPFS
.| [OS/2 Warp Storage] 2.0GB
.+- F: Logical FAT16
.| [MS-DOS Storage] 2.0GB
.+- G: Logical ext3
.| [Linux] 14.0GB
.+- H: Logical swap
.. [Linux Swap] 128MB

Last edited by appiah4 on 2020-02-08, 09:51. Edited 1 time in total.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 21 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

Right.. So where were we?

I gave the mII-233GP one more try on this motherboard, this time at 66MHzx3.0 but it seems to be totally dead (or the Zida 5STX does not properly support it despite the 1.30 BIOS explicitly stating it does - I am inclined to believe the former; RIP mII.). And since I don’t wat to use an Intel chip for this build I am stuck with the K5-PR166 until I find a K6 or 6x86 200/233.

So I may as well have fun with it no? Here are some system diagnostics and benchmarks:

AMD-K5-PR166-System-Info-01.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-System-Info-02.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-System-Info-03.jpg

AMD-K5-PR166-System-Info-04.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-System-Info-05.jpg

AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-01.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-02.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-03.jpg

AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-04.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-05.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-06.jpg

AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-07.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-08.jpg AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-09.jpg

AMD-K5-PR166-Benchmark-10.jpg

What can I say I am very impressed with this little chip that could; that is some great ALU performance there but I don’t see myself playing much Quake on this.. (Thankfully I have a second capture source build in the works with a Duron 1300 and a Voodoo 3.)

I also ended up removing the OPTi929/OPL3 (MAD16PRO) sound card and replacing it with a Genius ES1868 Audiodrive. For whatever reason the OPTi card had an annoying metallic distortion in its FM music playback particularly for the bass so I think it was a shitty filtering implementation.

I actually debated the merits of going with a CT2290 SB16 or CT4500 AWE64 but I want a functional wavetable header and bug-free MPU-401 so.. ESFM may not be authentic OPL3 but who gives a shit, to me it is near indistinguishable. I personally do not care (and think CrystalFM sounds better than OPL3 for example):

Genius-0207000-V2-0.jpg

Next step is doing some test captures from the S-Video out, then installing OS/2 Warp 4 - i.e. The real fun begins!

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 22 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

Initial video capture testing is a total failure, I have inquired about other peoples' experiences with Rage AIW cards in another thread but apparently my card does not output Video Out through its A/V Out breakout in MS-DOS, it probably needs to be initialized through drivers in Windows? Or maybe my homemade AIW breakout cable is not working properly (though I triple checked the pinout..). Regardless, I will replace the ATI All In Wonder Pro with a Radeon 7000 PCI and see if I can get Video Out from that for the time being. In the long run, I will be waiting for a RageII+DVD PCI card with S-Video Out to arrive in the mail.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 24 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
amadeus777999 wrote on 2020-02-11, 14:40:

What modules can be connected to the wavetable header?

The K5 is fantastic cpu - really liked it when playing Doom.

I am currently using a Dreamblaster S2, and enjoying its MT32 emulation in Monkey Island which sounds surprisingly tolerable to be honest.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 25 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

No rest for the wicked - this build keeps evolving as I keep running into issues.

Unfortunately the two PCI cards I had that actually have an S-Video out are dead, and the third I bought got lost in the mail thanks to fantastic service by Hermes in Germany. That means I am stuck with ATI All-In-Wonder Pro for better or worse. Unfortunately, this card does not have TV-Out enabled in BIOS and requires Windows drivers to enable it, so for DOS it is useless for my endeavor. As a result, the nostalgic MS-DOS/OS2/Linux triple boot I had in mind for this build will have to change to Win95C/OS2/Linux - a triple boot setup I used for a brief period in 1998 before completely removing OS/2 and switching over to Win98/Linux dual boot.

As a result, the new directory structure will be:

Samsung 20GB
+- C: Primary FAT32
| [Win95] 512MB
+- Extended
.+- D: Logical HPFS
.| [OS/2] 512MB
.+- E: Logical HPFS
.| [OS/2 Storage] 2.0GB
.+- F: Logical FAT32
.| [Win95 Storage] 12.0GB
.+- G: Logical ext3
.| [Linux] 4.0GB
.+- H: Logical swap
.. [Linux Swap] 128MB

Boot Manager will probably be GRUB.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 26 of 32, by ynari

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member

Personally I always use OS/2's Boot Manager for multiboot - this should be installed as the first partition.

If you're doing it in that order, following it by Primary FAT32 is fine with everything else logical. However, I'd allocate it in the order Boot Manager, FAT32 Win95, OS/2 Boot, Linux root partition, then the others in any order. Otherwise you may run into geometry issues/limits with Boot Manager.

There is a program out there that can patch an OS/2 install CD with all the latest patches. Although you appear to be using a non Connect version, so it's only really the main OS servicepack that's appropriate. You can also download Scitech Display Doctor for free, which will make working with graphics cards a lot easier. Uniaud may be a decent option for audio but I've found its support variable.

Reply 28 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
maxtherabbit wrote on 2020-02-26, 15:19:

Why on earth are you trying to capture some garbage tier svideo from a PC instead of RGB (VGA)?

Because it's much cheaper to capture S-Video (in my case, free) than MS-DOS RGB. Besides, quality S-Video and low-res RGB are not all that different.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 30 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
maxtherabbit wrote on 2020-02-27, 12:48:

from a sharpness/clarity perspective they are very close, however RGB destroys Y/C in color fidelity

Yes, but I'll have to live with that 😀 Investing in a VGA capture setup is not an option for me.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 31 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

This little chip came in the mail the other day and yesterday it went into my Budget 1997 OS/2 build.

Cyrix-6x86-P150-GP-01.jpg Cyrix-6x86-P150-GP-02.jpg

I got some very noticable gains in DOS. Quake 320x200 went from 27,4fps to 34,1fps (+24,5%) and Doom went from 74,6fps to 85,4fps (+14,4%).

Obviously these are nowhere near the +40% you'd expect from the PR ratings, but to be honest it has more to do with Cyrix's inaccurate PR rating than AMD's, at least in DOS. It is possible that I will see more difference in Windows 9x - we will see.

Also, disabling the L1 cache using SETMUL seems to take the system down to about 486DX2-50 speeds or 486DX-25 speeds depending on which benchmark (NSSI, Norton SysInfo, etc.) you look at.

I haven't been able to run SpeedSys on this system, it hangs at "Reading MSRs" and requires a cold reboot for some reason. A search on VOGONS led me to this reply by Phil who suggests disabling some CPU related feature in the BIOS, which led me to this reply by unmei220 who suggests turning of Cyrix 6x86/mII CPU Detection option, which does not exist in my BIOS. Looking around on the internet I came across 6X86OPT 0.77 which apparently fixes the issue by CPUIDEN.EXE -unset which can actually turn off CPU ID for 6x86 processors, so I guess that will do the trick. If it works I will post screenshots of the previous suite of software I ran on the K5 on this processor as well, for comparison.

I will also mess around with Linear Burst options which seem to be fairly important for Cyrix 6x86 CPUs. Scratch that, no Linear Burst on 430TX.

All in all, it is becoming a well rounded 1997 Budget home workstation, I feel like. 😀

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 32 of 32, by appiah4

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

Well, a few weeks of attempting to capture decent S-Video out from several PCI video cards (All-In-Wonder Pro, GeForce2 MX, Radeon 7000) have taught me this: S-Video is not for capturing computer graphics. So that plan is now down the drain, and this PC has now become a simple Windows 98SE / OS/2 Warp 4 Multi-Boot workstation project.

And that eased my graphics card selection quite a bit as well, because I can now feel at ease by going with this card instead of all the cards I went through earlier:

Matrox-Millennium-PCI.jpg

Matrox Millennium PCI, which would have been fairly affordable in 1997 when G100, Millennium II and Mystique were on the market and G200 was around the corner. This was a card I dreamt of owning in my teens, and if I actually ever bought a computer in 1997 I would have certainly gone with this. Matrox has top notch OS/2 drivers, which is a bonus (though I will most likely go with the SciTech SNAP video drivers instead regardless).

What followed was a fun install of OS/2 Warp 4 (I actually did it twice because I am an idiot) using custom Boot Disks with Daniela's updated IDE drivers.

OS2-Install-01.jpg

OS2-Install-02.jpg

OS2-Install-03.jpg

I will start tinkering with OS/2 Warp 4 tomorrow; first order of business will be installing FixPack M15 and Driver FixPack M3.

I will also re-benchmark this PC with the Matrox Millennium using a full suite of DOS benchmarks because I am really curious as to how the Matrox Millennium from 1995 compares with the ATI Rage Pro from 1997.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.