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1996 "Workstation," Build Ideas?

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Reply 20 of 39, by luckybob

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If someone says "pentium pro" enough in a thread, I get summoned.

edit:

I need to answer those 2 points:

A) if you are stuck on a firm date - I'd go with the pentium 2. PPro is amazing but TECHNICALLY P2 is the "best" in 1997.
B) if you are deadset on a dual board, you're going to spend a big premium unless you get lucky. I personally dont know why prices have gotten so high in the last few years. I blame LGR.

There is only ONE dual ppro board on ebay right now that is useable. its also $300. I didn't do an extensive search, but still. processors are another $100 EASY.

there is currently more selection in the dual slot-1 department.

Last edited by luckybob on 2021-07-17, 02:22. Edited 1 time in total.

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

Reply 21 of 39, by BitWrangler

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What about if we mention kibo does that still work?

2017: Basement full of ancient PC stuff, starting to go through it. 2021: Still starting, heh, many setbacks. So what's this BitWrangler guy's deal ??? >>> Taming the pile, specs to target?

Reply 22 of 39, by Intel486dx33

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For 1996 it would have been an Intel VX Chipset motherboard with Pentium 200mhz.
SDRAM memory PC-133
Sound Blaster AWE64
Win-NT 4.0

At work we use to do Amazing things with a Pentium 100mhz CPU computer and WInNT 4.0

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Last edited by Intel486dx33 on 2021-07-17, 08:20. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 23 of 39, by vetz

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luckybob wrote on 2021-07-17, 02:09:

If someone says "pentium pro" enough in a thread, I get summoned.

..I personally dont know why prices have gotten so high in the last few years. I blame LGR.

You don't think your own very high enthusiasm across several years spanding countless posts also have helped drive up demand?

You're the reason why I got myself a P65UP5 build 😉

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Reply 24 of 39, by BitWrangler

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Here's a good read, December 96 edition of PC Mag, editorial on 6th page down (page 4) goes into state of CPU performance in 96 then they review fastest systems available in the year from page 100 (gonna be P 102 in the scan)
https://books.google.ca/books?id=m4OknWEkpB4C … epage&q&f=false

edit: or actual page 100 in the scan after jumping into the 500s scrolling through a network supplement after page 95, oddness.

2017: Basement full of ancient PC stuff, starting to go through it. 2021: Still starting, heh, many setbacks. So what's this BitWrangler guy's deal ??? >>> Taming the pile, specs to target?

Reply 25 of 39, by bofh.fromhell

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luckybob wrote on 2021-07-17, 02:09:

If someone says "pentium pro" enough in a thread, I get summoned.

B) if you are deadset on a dual board, you're going to spend a big premium unless you get lucky. I personally dont know why prices have gotten so high in the last few years. I blame LGR.

Haha =)
PPro also always catches my attention.

Tho for some reason I don't think LGR has done any PPro content?
He, and all other youtubers, missed the P6's 25 year birthday last year.

Reply 26 of 39, by Anonymous Coward

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Intel486dx33 wrote on 2021-07-17, 07:40:

For 1996 it would have been an Intel VX Chipset motherboard with Pentium 200mhz.

I assume you mean HX.

"Will the highways on the internets become more few?" -Gee Dubya
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Reply 27 of 39, by Caluser2000

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bofh.fromhell wrote on 2021-07-17, 14:01:
Haha =) PPro also always catches my attention. […]
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luckybob wrote on 2021-07-17, 02:09:

If someone says "pentium pro" enough in a thread, I get summoned.

B) if you are deadset on a dual board, you're going to spend a big premium unless you get lucky. I personally dont know why prices have gotten so high in the last few years. I blame LGR.

Haha =)
PPro also always catches my attention.

Tho for some reason I don't think LGR has done any PPro content?
He, and all other youtubers, missed the P6's 25 year birthday last year.

Most likely because nobody really cared I should imagine. Pentium Pros were aim at the emterprise market.

There's a glitch in the matrix.
A founding member of the 286 appreciation society.
Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.
Of course, as always, I'm open to correction...😉

Reply 28 of 39, by luckybob

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vetz wrote:

You're the reason why I got myself a P65UP5 build 😉

Kw0SmAy.gif

Yea, I like to blame LGR for making things more expensive because he's unlikely to see this and defend himself. But in all honesty, if I were in his shoes, I'd likely do the same.

So overall the OP needs to make a hard decision to 1996 or 1997. single or dual. Only then can he start getting gear nailed down. Unless his goal is to fill his garage with EVERYTHING multi-CPU related, like I have.

If he (assumed) is wanting to stick "year correct" then he will need to use NT3.51 or NT4. Because last time I checked, Win 2000 was NOT released in 1996 nor 1997. And truth be told, NT is a bastard and a half to get running, however, once it is running, it will outlast the hardware and probably you.

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

Reply 29 of 39, by bofh.fromhell

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Caluser2000 wrote on 2021-07-17, 19:18:

Most likely because nobody really cared I should imagine. Pentium Pros were aim at the emterprise market.

True I guess.
Tho i saw tons of them in offices.
But lets not pretend we didn't drool over them in magazines.
Just like the Alphas and Sun's =)

Reply 30 of 39, by H3nrik V!

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Anonymous Coward wrote on 2021-07-17, 14:26:
Intel486dx33 wrote on 2021-07-17, 07:40:

For 1996 it would have been an Intel VX Chipset motherboard with Pentium 200mhz.

I assume you mean HX.

VX was probably more mainstream then, but given OP asks about workstation build, HX is superior in all other aspects than lack of sdram support ..

Please use the "quote" option if asking questions to what I write - it will really up the chances of me noticing 😀

Reply 31 of 39, by H3nrik V!

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luckybob wrote on 2021-07-17, 02:09:

If someone says "pentium pro" enough in a thread, I get summoned.

The word "dual" probably rings your bell too 🤣

Please use the "quote" option if asking questions to what I write - it will really up the chances of me noticing 😀

Reply 32 of 39, by Caluser2000

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bofh.fromhell wrote on 2021-07-18, 00:56:
True I guess. Tho i saw tons of them in offices. But lets not pretend we didn't drool over them in magazines. Just like the Alph […]
Show full quote
Caluser2000 wrote on 2021-07-17, 19:18:

Most likely because nobody really cared I should imagine. Pentium Pros were aim at the emterprise market.

True I guess.
Tho i saw tons of them in offices.
But lets not pretend we didn't drool over them in magazines.
Just like the Alphas and Sun's =)

I stripped my Pentium Pro 200 Intergraph system so I could use the scsi hdds and ram on something better...😉

There's a glitch in the matrix.
A founding member of the 286 appreciation society.
Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.
Of course, as always, I'm open to correction...😉

Reply 33 of 39, by BitWrangler

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Well if you sell your grandma to get a dual ppro at current prices, in a few months you'll wanna sell a kidney to upgrade to PII overdrives, so may as well start with a dual PII board, the first ones were 440LX I think, then you're stuck with 1st gen PIIs and can't go nuts over-upgrading.... until you discover that mendocinos work in SMP and have to get slotkets and a couple of 533 celerons... then you'll think you're doing a disservice to your celerons and ought to get a nice BX board, so you do that, overclock the celerons a bit, but that gets old. So a few months after that you get PIII 800 or so, which is good for a while, until you hear about tualatins.... so soon you're crawling eBay again looking for a pair of PIII-S 1.4 GHz.... and good coolers... and get that all setup with a hot AGP card and find yourself benchmarking DX10 games... then you realise you've got way far away from the 96-97 build and put that back together with the LX board and PII-233s again.

2017: Basement full of ancient PC stuff, starting to go through it. 2021: Still starting, heh, many setbacks. So what's this BitWrangler guy's deal ??? >>> Taming the pile, specs to target?

Reply 34 of 39, by mR_Slug

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The first boards for PII were 440FX in early '97, around mid '97 (IIRC) it was the LX with the all new AGP. IF we are talking dual, then LX boards seem hard to come by in my experience. The FX boards were used in loads of mid-range servers so there are a few more kicking about. What you go for probably depends on what you already have. If you have a BX/GX PII then the PPro or dual S7 will probably look more attractive. Also don't think the black-top PPro's came out till '97.

$100 a CPU for Ppro's? Lucky i got some 10+ years ago.

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Reply 35 of 39, by Intel486dx33

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Good luck finding an affordable Pentium Pro Motherboard. Not to mention a dual Pentium Pro motherboard.
The Pentium-100mhz can run WinNT 4.0 workstation and server. We used these at work and performed some amazing tasks with these.
They can run just about any WinNT 4.0 Application. From Database, File server, Web server, cache server, Proxy, HP OpenView, Software management distribution server, You name it.
It can do it. We use to use these in Classroom environments to push out hard drive images to all the student computers.
You could load over 30 classroom computers with WinNT Server 4.0 at once over the network in less than 5 minutes with a Pentium-100 software management distribution program.
I think our bottle neck was the Cat-3 ethernet network. But this computer held up well.

So I would say if you just want it for running WinNT 4.0 software then a Pentium-100 is fast enough.

Last edited by Intel486dx33 on 2021-07-19, 01:45. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 36 of 39, by Errius

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A problem with the PPro specifically is that they contain a lot of gold. Many were deliberately destroyed.

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Reply 37 of 39, by Intel486dx33

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H3nrik V! wrote on 2021-07-18, 08:37:
Anonymous Coward wrote on 2021-07-17, 14:26:
Intel486dx33 wrote on 2021-07-17, 07:40:

For 1996 it would have been an Intel VX Chipset motherboard with Pentium 200mhz.

I assume you mean HX.

VX was probably more mainstream then, but given OP asks about workstation build, HX is superior in all other aspects than lack of sdram support ..

How is the HX better than VX chipset ?
Do you have a comparison chart ?

Reply 38 of 39, by Anonymous Coward

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It supports dual processors, and up to 512mb of system memory, all of which can be cached with the optional tag RAM. It also supports marginally faster memory timings and ECC.
Wikipedia has a pretty good comparison chart of the Triton chipsets.
The VX and HX are both "Triton II", and came out at the same time. The TX chipset (really Triton III), was an update for the VX. The HX unfortunately never got the Triton III treatment.

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Reply 39 of 39, by Doornkaat

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Intel486dx33 wrote on 2021-07-22, 17:38:
H3nrik V! wrote on 2021-07-18, 08:37:
Anonymous Coward wrote on 2021-07-17, 14:26:

I assume you mean HX.

VX was probably more mainstream then, but given OP asks about workstation build, HX is superior in all other aspects than lack of sdram support ..

How is the HX better than VX chipset ?
Do you have a comparison chart ?

In case you actually care this time: https://www.anandtech.com/show/72 There's a feature table for most Socket 7 chipsets there.