I tried running Ultima II with the upgrade patch on my K6-III+ machine today. Still no good. I suspect whatever the developer did to make it work without a DOS protected mode extender in DOSBox broke functionality on actual DOS machines, or that it's using newer instructions that the CPU can't provide, or that I'm missing something really obvious. I reached out to Soviet Conscript on his video showing how to run games from the Wizardry Archives and Ultima Collection on original hardware, including the fan patches, and he made it work so long ago that it was clearly before something changed in the 2.0 or 2.1 version of the patch. Looks like version 1.1 of the patch is still available, so I'll try that next. If that works, it's good enough. I just want slightly improved graphics.
Edit: Version 1.1 of the patch did the trick. Looks like I get the speed patch, some stability upgrades, EGA graphics, and protection from the stat overflow bug. Looks like the innkeeper might still rob me sometimes though. Still pretty solid.
I also started cleaning the dual Pentium Pro machine I grabbed about a year ago. After a few cleaning wipes I was surprised to see that the SCSI hard drive and floppy drive weren't as dirty as I thought. Broke a few tabs on the translucent turquoise case front during the cleaning process, but such sacrifices are necessary to remove a dead spider. Worst parts of the case are the rust on the one bottom corner and the rivets holding it all together. I think I'm going to need to drill and clip the rivets then clean each panel individually. If I go that far I may even strip, prime, and powder coat everything. The case will eventually house my SLI Voodoo 2 build, so I might consider replacing the side panel with a window while I'm at it. Could be really fun.
Not sure what will happen to the dual Pentium Pro machine. Tempted to turn it into a weird workstation with an Oxygen 202 which only has NT4 drivers, or I could see what else is available. I definitely spotted a Crystal audio chip and some headers labeled "wavetable" on the board, so there's some potential.
I spend my days fighting with clunky software so I can afford to spend my evenings fighting with clunky hardware.