VOGONS


First post, by BastlerMike

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I have a Boca Research "Vortek" ISA graphics card based on the IIT AGX015 accelerator chip.
It seems that the original driver software or some generic drivers are nowhere available online.
Any help in finding some suitable software is very much appreciated.

Reply 1 of 13, by Stiletto

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File area #  1 ... Video Vortek & Vortek-VL Drivers 
-----------------------------------------------------------
OS21_VR.ZIP 1176754 6/16/94 VGAVR1/2 Vortek OS/2 2.1 Video Drivers
You must PKUNZIP -D OS21_VR.ZIP
VR201D1.ZIP 1234899 6/09/94 VGAVR1/2 Vortek 2.01 Disk for Windows
VR201D2.ZIP 438454 6/09/94 VGAVR1/2 Vortek 2.01 Disk for DOS
OS2VL1.ZIP 1176754 6/16/94 VGAVL1/2 Vortek-VL OS/2 2.1 video drivers
You must PKUNZIP -D OS2VL1.ZIP
VL12D1.ZIP 1378340 6/20/94 VGAVL1/2 Vortek-VL 1.2 disk for Windows
VL12D2.ZIP 425498 6/20/94 VGAVL1/2 Vortek-VL 1.2 disk for Dos

Got some filenames here, but I have to stop here due to lack of time. Boca Research still has some info.
http://www.bocaresearch.com/support/drivers-archive.html
ftp://ftp.bocaresearch.com
http://filedump.glitchwrks.com/mirrors/ftp.bocaresearch.com/

And Vortek model number is apparently VGAVR1 or VGAVR2.

This angry guy in 2000 says that there were never Win9x drivers. So expect Win3.1 or lower when they are found.
http://forums.windrivers.com/showthread.php?9379.html

Will try to help later...

"I see a little silhouette-o of a man, Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you
do the Fandango!" - Queen

Stiletto

Reply 3 of 13, by Unknown_K

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I think I have a Hercules card with that chip (Hercules Graphite Pro), pricey in its day but didn't have OS/2 drivers not sure about Win 95 but probably not. I have the original disks that shipped with it if you need them (Win 3.1).

Collector of old computers, hardware, and software

Reply 4 of 13, by BastlerMike

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I doubt that this will work, because many of these vendor specific drivers refuse to install if the actual card is not present. But it is worth a try. Could you please upload the Hercules drivers here?

Reply 7 of 13, by Stiletto

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Haven't forgotten this.

Best hint so far:
captaincomic has a 1MB Vortek w/IIT AGX-015, it seems.
http://www.dosforum.de/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=7545
Ask him for a copy of the driver disk (if available).

Old Thrashbarg was also looking for drivers.
Re: Old Expensive Windows Accelerators

Attached an uninformative datasheet.

Attachments

  • Filename
    agx015.pdf
    File size
    106.58 KiB
    Downloads
    69 downloads
    File comment
    AGX015 datasheet
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception

"I see a little silhouette-o of a man, Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you
do the Fandango!" - Queen

Stiletto

Reply 8 of 13, by Stiletto

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Got confirmation that glitch's FTP backup is as complete as it's going to get, and bocaresearch.com will not be re-opening its FTP.

Ergo, the captaincomic card is potentially the best source for official drivers.

"I see a little silhouette-o of a man, Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you
do the Fandango!" - Queen

Stiletto

Reply 9 of 13, by cyclone3d

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Yes, I am super Necro-ing this thread because I just purchased a Boca Vortek ISA card and went looking for drivers. It looks like there are Win95 drivers included with the Win95 CD per the display.txt from the CD:

Hercules Graphite, Boca Vortek, Orchid Celsius (IIT AGX) -------------------------------------------------------- The Windows 95 […]
Show full quote

Hercules Graphite, Boca Vortek, Orchid Celsius (IIT AGX)
--------------------------------------------------------
The Windows 95 Setup program does not automatically install the driver
for these adapters and other adapters that use the IIT AGX controller.
To manually change to the correct display type, open Display
properties in Control Panel, click the Settings tab, and then click
Change Display Type.

This will install the correct driver files, and enable you to select
256-color, 16-bit color, and high-resolution modes.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header

Reply 10 of 13, by WJG6260

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Apologies for super necro-ing this as well, but I’ve made some discoveries with these notoriously difficult cards. They’re quite neat, but not all of that exciting, at least not as far as DOS gaming goes. The Orchid Celsius VLB driver has an installer that can provide these cards with a functional VESA TSR (including for the AGX-014, though your mileage may vary with the AGX-016 and other variants of the AGX-015), if your card does not have an appropriate BIOS. UniVBE 6.7 then seems to work just fine with these cards, after the TSR is loaded.

You can install the TSR from a menu, and even though the driver installation will warn that the Orchid Celsius isn’t present, you can proceed regardless of the warning.

The Windows 95 drivers seem to work okay, at least for my ISA-based AGX-014 Paradise Accelerator Pro. They do not provide 24-bit color modes, but seem to function otherwise quite fine and offer resolutions up to 1024x768 with 1mb of VRAM. I presume there is some acceleration provided by using these drivers; WinBench 4.0 yields a score of 5.03, which is about twice that of my Tseng ET4000AX-equipped Diamond SpeedStar Plus.

There are drivers for the Hercules Graphite Pro out there; that being said, they are specific to that card, and do not work on others. I have not tested Windows NT, but it seems as if Windows 3.X support for most of these cards is non-existent so long as the drivers are gone.

I don’t know how helpful this is, but I hope it helps someone out there. I’ve attached the Orchid Drivers, found on archive.org.

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Reply 11 of 13, by Stiletto

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WJG6260 wrote on 2021-09-18, 15:08:

Apologies for super necro-ing this as well, but I’ve made some discoveries with these notoriously difficult cards. They’re quite neat, but not all of that exciting, at least not as far as DOS gaming goes. The Orchid Celsius VLB driver has an installer that can provide these cards with a functional VESA TSR (including for the AGX-014, though your mileage may vary with the AGX-016 and other variants of the AGX-015), if your card does not have an appropriate BIOS. UniVBE 6.7 then seems to work just fine with these cards, after the TSR is loaded.

Argh, another super-necro. Well, I'll let it slide this time.

I'm gonna end up agreeing with 2014 Stiletto, someone contacting that captaincomic guy on dosforum and asking him if his Vortek a. has driver disks and b. can he archive his driver disks would be the best method of attack.
Unfortunately, someone should have done it in 2014...

[EDIT] Well, the OS/2 2.1 drivers have turned up in the interim.
https://archive.org/details/os2warpsofthits2nd95
https://archive.org/download/os2warpsofthits2 … 6%2FOS21_VR.ZIP

"I see a little silhouette-o of a man, Scaramouche, Scaramouche, will you
do the Fandango!" - Queen

Stiletto

Reply 12 of 13, by cyclone3d

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And I just received a VLB IIT AGX-015 card.

Is the max RAM on these chips 2MB or is it really 6MB like it says on the one collecting site?

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header

Reply 13 of 13, by WJG6260

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Stiletto wrote on 2021-09-19, 03:53:
Argh, another super-necro. Well, I'll let it slide this time. […]
Show full quote
WJG6260 wrote on 2021-09-18, 15:08:

Apologies for super necro-ing this as well, but I’ve made some discoveries with these notoriously difficult cards. They’re quite neat, but not all of that exciting, at least not as far as DOS gaming goes. The Orchid Celsius VLB driver has an installer that can provide these cards with a functional VESA TSR (including for the AGX-014, though your mileage may vary with the AGX-016 and other variants of the AGX-015), if your card does not have an appropriate BIOS. UniVBE 6.7 then seems to work just fine with these cards, after the TSR is loaded.

Argh, another super-necro. Well, I'll let it slide this time.

I'm gonna end up agreeing with 2014 Stiletto, someone contacting that captaincomic guy on dosforum and asking him if his Vortek a. has driver disks and b. can he archive his driver disks would be the best method of attack.
Unfortunately, someone should have done it in 2014...

[EDIT] Well, the OS/2 2.1 drivers have turned up in the interim.
https://archive.org/details/os2warpsofthits2nd95
https://archive.org/download/os2warpsofthits2 … 6%2FOS21_VR.ZIP

Apologies again for the super-necro! This is awesome news, though! I think I may try and reach out to that captaincomic guy and see what he has to say. I'm curious if the Boca Vortek drivers install on non-Boca cards; it appears as if most other cards' drivers are unfortunately manufacturer-specific. This is awesome news that the OS/2 2.1 drivers have appeared! I wonder what resolutions they offer--I might be tempted to test this, should I get some time.

cyclone3d wrote on 2021-09-19, 05:43:

And I just received a VLB IIT AGX-015 card.

Is the max RAM on these chips 2MB or is it really 6MB like it says on the one collecting site?

I believe it truly is 6MB, as everything I read in PCMag indicates that there were 6MB variants. I've attached something from the April 13, 1993 issue of PCMag, (EDIT: My apologies for the low-quality image. Here's the original.) which suggests that Hercules either offered--or intended to offer--a version of the AGX with 6MB of RAM. I'd presume this would apply to the AGX-015, as that had a 32-bit core. I believe, based on what I saw in the datasheets, that the AGX-014 was 16-bit. It's still a mighty fast card for its time, though, and considering that it's just a hopped-up IBM XGA, it's impressive, to say the least.

I'd be curious to see just how fast the VLB variant is. The AGX-014 I have (WD Paradise Accelerator Pro) suggests on the box that it's faster than some VLB cards. This appears to be true in pure Windows acceleration tasks, but untrue in most other things. I have some benchmarks on this thread, and they show where it really lags behind other contemporary pure DOS cards (ET4000AX and whatnot).

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Feel free to check out my YouTube and Twitter!

"Never trust a computer you can't throw out a window." - Woz