VOGONS


Reply 40 of 52, by SodaSuccubus

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DX4-100 user here.

I don't recall SC2K running *that* horribly. Granted I never got too far into it but it was happily playable enough aslong as your running the DOS version.

Now try something like Transport Tycoon Deluxe, and that will start to struggle on a 486. Still playable if you lower some details and stay zoomed close (ish) to your buildings. But try zooming out far enough and scrolling around the map, itl slow to a just playable crawl.

SC2K ran 100 times better then TT ever did.

Last edited by SodaSuccubus on 2020-08-11, 22:51. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 41 of 52, by jakethompson1

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utahraptor wrote on 2020-08-11, 20:03:
After reading the concerns regarding Total Annihilation & Sim City 2000 performance on a 486 platform I am also considering an a […]
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After reading the concerns regarding Total Annihilation & Sim City 2000 performance on a 486 platform I am also considering an alternate socket 7 MMX build. I have a few concerns:

Will Dos still be fully functional and considered authentic?

Does this platform fully support the windows 3.1?

Will the motherboard be fully supported or will various pieces have no drivers or be unsupported?

Will I still be able to make full use of the AWE 32/64 or other external MIDI devices both in DOS and Win 3.1?

Thanks...

Well the good news is if you use archive.org to look at motherboard vendor's websites, often Socket 7 is the "beginning of time" as far as their websites are concerned. So you may be able to get a copy of the manual.

With socket 7 there's no reason not to go ahead and bump up to Windows for Workgroups 3.11 rather than sticking with 3.1.

Socket 7 (AT) boards have so little onboard that it's hard to think of what drivers you would run into, so long as you stick with a generic (AT) board and not an OEM board. I can't think of a driver issue that wouldn't equally apply to a 486, the major one being 32-bit disk access in Win3.x with a drive over 504MB (which you can get around with MH32BIT). Along with the FAT16/2GB max partition size issue, which someone else pointed out already.

I'd say it's comparable to running Windows 98SE on a Pentium 4 - the earlier the socket 7 board video card (which is the limiting factor IMO), the more likely it is to work, and obviously Win 3.x was quickly dying at the time, but it wouldn't be unusual to run 3.x on such a machine for some special purpose. For example, I remember taking a computer-based test at a Prometric (or similar) testing center in the early 2000s and it seemed like the machine was Win 3.x. It wouldn't be surprising for a single-purpose machine like a cash register or catalog lookup station at a library to have run it, either. Socket 7 actually predates Win95 by a few months.

I see no issues with those sound cards. Socket 7 was already standard by the time AWE64 came out (1996).

Sounds like a build that would be fun to work on! I wouldn't sweat "authenticity;" for DOS/Win3.x. Socket 7+DOS is no more inauthentic than stragglers sticking with WinXP in 2012. If you're like the rest of us I bet you'll be back to build another machine in 6 months or so once you get more of the background! And at that point you can promote this to a Win9x machine and build another DOS one.

Reply 42 of 52, by The Serpent Rider

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Most people were getting Windows 95 by then, often pre installed. DOS was already considered old

Windows 9x is heavily based on DOS.

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Reply 45 of 52, by SodaSuccubus

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utahraptor wrote on 2020-08-12, 02:00:

One last question that I am scared to have answered. Most of these eBay auctions are from other countries. Are those legit or scams?

Iv gotten so many of boards from Europe (Russia/Ukraine in particular).

No idea why they seem to have the major stockpile on this stuff. But I haven't run into any issues yet.

Just expect some shipping time. Especially with COVID clogging up the system.

Reply 46 of 52, by The Serpent Rider

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No idea why they seem to have the major stockpile on this stuff. But I haven't run into any issues yet.

Late adoption of new hardware with much longer usage. Apparently combined with very slow old PC parts recycling, if any at all. East Asian markets are also gold mine of good stuff.

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Open up your hate, and let it flow into me

Reply 47 of 52, by utahraptor

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Ok I have settled on a socket 7 pentium mmx build.

Parts ordered so far:

  • Tyan ATX Trinity 1592s
  • Pentium mmx of unknown speed (came with motherboard)
  • Riva 128zx AGP
  • ALS100 sound card

Now I need help selecting the remaining parts to be able to test

Things I think I need and could use suggestions on:

  • RAM: I’m thinking 64 mb of SD RAM? What type and speed? The motherboard supports two types
  • USB floppy emulator and usb thumb drive
  • some kind of IDE flash or so adapter
  • misc cables, anyone have a list?
  • ATX case and power supply
  • Heat sink and fan for pentium mmx?
  • Cdrom
  • 3.5 floppy drive

What am I missing and any thoughts for selecting above?

Thanks!

Reply 48 of 52, by jakethompson1

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I would go with:

64MB PC100 DIMM (check motherboard cacheable limit; consider 128MB)
PCI ethernet card (RTL8139 is compatible and cheap)
CR2032 battery
PC speaker aka motherboard speaker
2x IDE ribbon cables - you want the kind with all 40 holes. not the newer UltraDMA cables with one hole in the middle blocked off
Floppy ribbon cable with connectors for two drives
Thermal grease
IDE CD-ROM drive with audio connector
CD-ROM to sound card bypass cable for audio CD track playback
and of course, PS/2 keyboard and mouse

You can also use a DVD+-RW or DVD-ROM or CD-RW of course, not just CD-ROM. You can use a SATA CD-ROM + converter, but audio CD playback will require workarounds, if it's something you need.

As for the heatsink+fan, Socket 7, 370, and A heatsink+fans are all physically compatible. I have a StarTech high-profile 370 one, on my HOT-591P (appears to be a comparable board to yours) but I don't like it as it fits very loosely.

Make sure your power supply has enough older style connectors (Molex, floppy) or buy some adapters to convert SATA to older style.

Reply 49 of 52, by utahraptor

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jakethompson1 wrote on 2020-09-03, 17:19:
I would go with: […]
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I would go with:

64MB PC100 DIMM (check motherboard cacheable limit; consider 128MB)
PCI ethernet card (RTL8139 is compatible and cheap)
CR2032 battery
PC speaker aka motherboard speaker
2x IDE ribbon cables - you want the kind with all 40 holes. not the newer UltraDMA cables with one hole in the middle blocked off
Floppy ribbon cable with connectors for two drives
Thermal grease
IDE CD-ROM drive with audio connector
CD-ROM to sound card bypass cable for audio CD track playback
and of course, PS/2 keyboard and mouse

You can also use a DVD+-RW or DVD-ROM or CD-RW of course, not just CD-ROM. You can use a SATA CD-ROM + converter, but audio CD playback will require workarounds, if it's something you need.

As for the heatsink+fan, Socket 7, 370, and A heatsink+fans are all physically compatible. I have a StarTech high-profile 370 one, on my HOT-591P (appears to be a comparable board to yours) but I don't like it as it fits very loosely.

Make sure your power supply has enough older style connectors (Molex, floppy) or buy some adapters to convert SATA to older style.

Thanks for the list! I don't want to say what I just spent on non antique items for this build <o_O>

Reply 50 of 52, by utahraptor

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Hey guys,

I have one more question sorry. For this ATX socket 7 motherboard is a standard ATX case and power supply capable of powering on and off the PC correctly or do I need to get a special power switch?

Reply 51 of 52, by jakethompson1

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utahraptor wrote on 2020-09-05, 00:58:

Hey guys,

I have one more question sorry. For this ATX socket 7 motherboard is a standard ATX case and power supply capable of powering on and off the PC correctly or do I need to get a special power switch?

Any board with the ATX-style ports on the back should support soft power. The older boards that were either AT or ATX required a jumper to select what kind of power supply.

By the way, if you have a newer power supply with a 24-pin connector, you may find that 4 pins "overhang" the 20-pin connector on the board, but that's ok.

Reply 52 of 52, by Tetrium

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utahraptor wrote on 2020-08-08, 21:40:
Ok thanks for all the advice! I have been reviewing the release system requirements for the games I most want to play: […]
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Ok thanks for all the advice! I have been reviewing the release system requirements for the games I most want to play:

...
Total Annihilation 100 Mhz
...

I absolutely love TA and I can tell you that even a Pentium 2 350MHz was not enough to get most out of TA.
But otoh, if you want to give it a try (even if only for the campaign missions instead of skirmish mode) then please let us know how it worked 😜
But TA on any 486 is not gonna work well.

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