S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

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S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby atar » 2017-3-17 @ 21:49

Bought a V7 Mirage P64 card (S3-Trio64, 86C764-P). It works in a 440BX PC, but if I plug it into a Xeon E3-1275 v3 @ 3.50GHz / C220 mainboard, the screen doesn't show any signs of life. The card itself seems to be working, but not in this machine. On the other hand, Hercules Terminator S3-Trio64V+ works fine in both 440BX and C220 machines.
Tried switching off the both com ports, disabling the VGA-Palete snoop, increasing the PCI latency timer, but no avail. The card is recognized by the mainboard - once the linux boots I can login over the net and see it on the PCI bus.

Are there more known issues with the S3-Trio64 cards? Have anyone tried them in i5+ machines?
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby r00tb33r » 2017-3-17 @ 22:50

How different is the VBIOS on each card? I don't suppose it will blow up if you swap ROM chips...?
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby Jo22 » 2017-3-17 @ 23:30

Hi atar, I had the same issues with installing one of my Trios in an AMD Athlon 64 (AM2) machine.
I'm not familiar with all of the details, but I guess it is somehow related with ISA-PCI address space mapping
(ie, loading the VGA BIOS from C0000 - C7FFF doesn't seem to work, though Windows sees the card in device manager if used as a secondary card).

Sorry, that i can't be more precise. Best thing I found was this link about PCI.. :(

PCI I/O and PCI Memory Addresses
http://www.tldp.org/LDP/tlk/dd/pci.html

Edit: The PC I tested my Trio card with was an M2N-NVM model by ASUSTek.
Not sure if it is relevant, but it has PCI-Express slots already (and built-in Geforce graphics).
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby r00tb33r » 2017-3-18 @ 00:03

Is loading address on the ROM? If that's the case swapping ROM chips between the cards might give some insight. I think they are similar enough that it just might work.
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby atar » 2017-3-18 @ 10:37

r00tb33r wrote:Is loading address on the ROM? If that's the case swapping ROM chips between the cards might give some insight. I think they are similar enough that it just might work.


While they indeed look similar to a user, Trio64V+ requires quite a different chip wake-up sequence ( compare http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/pdf/ ... _Jul95.pdf , section 13.1 : "CHIP WAKEUP" with http://www.vgamuseum.info/index.php/com ... 50a13d0c31 section 11.1 : "CHIP WAKEUP"), so unless the VGA BIOS writers cared of different chips, it won't work. And supporting both of them is not trivial, here are more details on this: http://tyom.blogspot.de/2017/03/hercule ... -back.html . I doubt there is a VGA BIOS except of OFW which would work on both. That's why I needed testing in the other thread.
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby atar » 2017-3-18 @ 10:51

Jo22 wrote:Hi atar, I had the same issues with installing one of my Trios in an AMD Athlon 64 (AM2) machine.


Hi Jo22, this made me test it on my AM2 machine too. Works out the box.

Jo22 wrote:Edit: The PC I tested my Trio card with was an M2N-NVM model by ASUSTek.
Not sure if it is relevant, but it has PCI-Express slots already (and built-in Geforce graphics).


Mine is from ASROCK, but also has PCI-Express and buit-in Geforce. Although the Mirage card works fine in it, the main board has an NVIDIA chipset, and thus no IOMMU. So, I can not use it for my experiments.

After poking some VGA registers, I see that Trio64 doesn't even start the PLL. Which makes me think. Can it be that the new mainboards have slightly different PCI voltages?
Not starting PLL is definitely a hardware problem.
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby yawetaG » 2017-3-18 @ 12:58

Maybe the card only works in 5V PCI slots and not 3.3V ones, despite fitting in both?

What happens if you disable the on-board video? If you can't manually disable it, it might be that the motherboard doesn't support video cards in other slots than specific PCI-Express slots...
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Re: S3-Trio64 in a modern PC - are there any tricks?

Postby atar » 2017-3-18 @ 14:44

yawetaG wrote:Maybe the card only works in 5V PCI slots and not 3.3V ones, despite fitting in both?

It looks like something like that, but I don't think any of my boards has 5V slots. They were only in early Pentium mainboards, right? At least from a look all my PCI slots are identical.

yawetaG wrote:What happens if you disable the on-board video? If you can't manually disable it, it might be that the motherboard doesn't support video cards in other slots than specific PCI-Express slots...

Unfortunately there is no setting for that. The on-board video switches off auto-magically. But I don't expect it to be the reason because a) there is no signal on the onboard video and b) a Trio64V+ card works fine in the same PCI slot. Tried actually multiple ones. Trio64V+ works everywhere, Trio64 doesn't.

Update: I stand corrected. There is a setting for disabling the on-board video, but disabling it makes no difference.
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