My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby feipoa » 2016-1-02 @ 09:14

It would be nice to see these results plotted in some bar charts.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby matze79 » 2016-1-05 @ 18:22

It would be very interesting to see some 32bit EISA VGA Cards compared to VLB.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby Anonymous Coward » 2016-1-05 @ 23:57

That would be a pretty difficult comparison, because VGA cards for EISA bus are usually antiquated. I think a Mach32 or S3 928 VRAM comparison could be possible though. Other VGA chips that are *probably* on EISA bus are S3 911/924, ET4000AX, Compaq Qvision and something from IIT (I think).

The only EISA VGA card I presently own is the Compaq QVision 1024. I am not aware of a VLB equivalent though. I used to have a 928 based card, but I traded it away several years ago. I remember that card was not very fast though.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby Anonymous Coward » 2018-7-31 @ 14:51

There is something interesting I noticed about using Cyrix 5x86 processors on the SuperEISA (Tyan S1437 and other 5V only boards) is that I cannot get the system to post when the Cyrix is jumpered for 2X or 3X mode. However, when I set the jumper on my VRM to the "2.5X" setting which was originally intended to be used by the IntelDX4, I can then get the system to boot and then switch the 5x86 into 3X mode using a utility like CTCHIP. The 2.5X setting apparently leads to the BREQ pin, and I'm not sure if there are any negative long term affects by doing this.

More interestingly is that this "2.5X" trick does not seem to work with the Cyrix 5x86 chips that have 3X/4X multipliers. I tried it with a 5x86-100/4X, and could not get any sign of life at all. This is rather unfortunate, because it means I likely cannot upgrade to 133MHz version.

Has anyone else experienced this problem? I am wondering if maybe certain CPU interposers have a workaround for this. It seems to be a timing problem.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby j^aws » 2018-7-31 @ 19:49

^^ I don't have the same board, but on my Acer J3 VL/ EISA system with the Socket 3 cartridge, I managed to get the Cyrix 5x86 running with a simple interposer at 100 MHz using 3x multi. And IIRC, with Write-Back cache, too. Also, booted an Intel POD83 at 100 MHz using 2.5x multi.

Maybe your issue is relating to chipset/ BIOS?
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby Anonymous Coward » 2018-7-31 @ 23:53

Hmm, I guess you are correct that the J3 should support write back L1 cache, because it would have to in order to property support the Pentium CPU cards. I have the J3, but not a 486 CPU card. It would be nice for testing, but I don't think I would actually use it since it's much more interesting to have a dual Pentium with VL and EISA busses.

I suspect the issue is more likely related to the chipset, as I have also tried an AWARD BIOS on this board. But, it's more than likely just a matter of adding an extra resistor or capacitor somewhere.
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Win95 Performance of 2740W / 2742W

Postby Disruptor » 2018-8-11 @ 18:47

I'm using a U320 seagate 10K 36G hdd on my EISA 2740W controller.
When configuring the BIOS with Compaq's ECU, there are speed options up to 10.0 MB/s only.
HDD support is up to 8G with BIOS. Speed is 8.0 MB/s in DOS with BIOS 2.11 driver.
After loading ASPI7DOS.SYS 1.42 I get 16.8 MB/s and full 36G support (but the disk is still bored).
However, when I try the stock Win95C miniport driver, I get 6.8 MB/s only.
Using Win98SE I'm struggeling with 5.2 MB/s
There is no difference when loading ASPI7DOS.SYS in Win9x' CONFIG.SYS

486AE100.png
100MHz Am486DX4-100NV8T @50x2 L1=WT, L2=WB
486AE100.png (9.27 KiB) Viewed 83 times

486AE150.png
150MHz Am5x86-133 @50x3 L1=WT, L2=WB
486AE150.png (9.42 KiB) Viewed 83 times


Board: ABIT 486 EISA-AE4 running at 50 MHz FSB -- mod: added a socket for dirty tag ram, including dirty tag sram
DRAM: 8x4 MB = 32 MB 30 pin SIMM
CPU: AMD 486 DX4 NV8T, running at 50x2 on a 3.3 V adapter (L1 WB not possible due to board limitation, so using a WT CPU)
Timings (stable): 50 MHz, DRAM: slower & Write CAS 1T, Cache: Write Cycle 2T & Burst Read Cycle 1T, Bus: CPUCLK/6
SCSI: Adaptec 2740W (BIOS 2.11)
IDE: no-name ISA IDE with multi-io
Graphics: Compaq QVision EISA (seems to be faster than my ELSA Winner 1000)
Network: 3Com Etherlink 10/100 3c597
Sound: SB16 ISA
HDD: Seagate ST336607LW

The added dirty tag ram did not show much difference in L2 WB performance on 33 MHz but on 50 MHz.
Tag rams are 20 ns, cache rams are 15 ns.

3c597 windows 9x performance is 14.4 MBit/s SMB1 (file cache) and 12.2 MBit/s (non-cached).


What plain HDD speeds have you noted at Win9x?
Do you have any idea where I can get a newer or faster Adaptec Win9x miniport driver?
Last edited by Disruptor on 2018-8-25 @ 14:16, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby mrau » 2018-8-11 @ 19:57

looking at how win98 got significantly slower than win95 i'd say You overdid it; i am i little bit surprised that dos can pull ahead like that
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby Anonymous Coward » 2018-8-13 @ 01:48

I have not tried 9x with my AHA 2742W. I have only ran NT4 and Windows 3.11. I haven't noticed problems in either. This adapter is natively supported by NT4. Does it have similar support in 9x? I know with Windows 3.11, you need to install a special driver from adaptec in order to take full advantage of the adapter. Does such a utility exist for 9x?

Also, in the BIOS setup it does not specifically list 20MB/sec support like BIOSes on newer adaptec cards. Instead, the 20MB/sec is enabled by checking the box for enabling the "wide" option.

BTW, v2.11 may not be the latest BIOS release. I have two of these cards, and I think my newer one came with a 3.x BIOS...I'll have to check.

Also, I highly recommend dual booting with NT4 and windows 3.x, because 9x sucks!
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby NJRoadfan » 2018-8-13 @ 03:01

Adaptec offered drivers for Windows 9x for the 2740W, its the same drivers (and SCSI chip, the AIC-777x) as the VL-Bus 2840VL. Oddly these files are missing from Adaptec's support site. The full SCSISet diskettes and the EZ-SCSI suite had drivers for DOS/Win 3.1 (including the .386 driver for 32-bit disk access) and Windows 9x/NT.

If you need the latest BIOS, its still on Adaptec's website to burn onto a EPROM.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby Disruptor » 2018-8-13 @ 20:49

Yes, the 274x does have native support in Windows 95 and Windows 98.
Perhaps I will put my GUS classic 2.2 into this computer. Since the drivers do not work under 98, I'll stay with Win95C then.

I can find a v2.10 BIOS on the Adaptec website.
My adapter has v2.11 already.

Because the mainboard BIOS does not configure the chipset properly, I've to run a debug script in
autoexec.bat
Code: Select all
debug < wb.txt

wb.txt
Code: Select all
o c18 61
o c1c ee
q

When I install Windows NT, I will have to patch the MBR to get full motherboard performance.

What's the most recent version of EZ-SCSI or SCSISet? Can I download this from Adaptec?
Can you send me a copy of your newer BIOS please?
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby BitWrangler » 2018-8-14 @ 13:49

Anonymous Coward wrote:There is something interesting I noticed about using Cyrix 5x86 processors on the SuperEISA (Tyan S1437 and other 5V only boards) is that I cannot get the system to post when the Cyrix is jumpered for 2X or 3X mode. However, when I set the jumper on my VRM to the "2.5X" setting which was originally intended to be used by the IntelDX4, I can then get the system to boot and then switch the 5x86 into 3X mode using a utility like CTCHIP. The 2.5X setting apparently leads to the BREQ pin, and I'm not sure if there are any negative long term affects by doing this.

More interestingly is that this "2.5X" trick does not seem to work with the Cyrix 5x86 chips that have 3X/4X multipliers. I tried it with a 5x86-100/4X, and could not get any sign of life at all. This is rather unfortunate, because it means I likely cannot upgrade to 133MHz version.

Has anyone else experienced this problem? I am wondering if maybe certain CPU interposers have a workaround for this. It seems to be a timing problem.

The hacky way around it is to get the pinout diagram and figure out which pins to insulate by "taping" or coating in nail polish or similar, then wiring up active high or active lows from multi signal pins to Vcc and Gnds on the base of the pins with thin strands of wire wrapped around.

Techniques similar to "vid pinning" mods, or Bsel and multi mods on S370

Edit: Oh, another trick is to find some thin wire, that when you strip some insulation off, if the insulation is thin enough you can use that sleeve to insulate a pin, only works with ZIF sockets though, where the hole is a little bigger and there's clearance in the contacts until the lever is clamped.
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Re: My Ultimate VL/EISA 486

Postby Anonymous Coward » 2018-8-27 @ 02:31

I don't think insulating a pin in this case is going to work. There seems to be some kind of BIOS or timing incompatibility with the Cyrix 5x86 on this board.

On my POST card, my BIOS gets stuck at code 05 with the 5x86 installed.

Soft reset/power-on determined. Going to enable ROM. i.e. disable shadow
RAM/Cache if any. Going to enable ROM.i.e. disable shadow RAM/cache if
any.Chipset initialization over,DMA and interrupt controller disabled. CMOS
pending interrupt disabled.
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