VOGONS


First post, by reverb

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Hi everyone, I'm very new to older computer (being only 19, 🤣) and I need some help figuring out an issue.

I got a P3 from my college (and a P1 Compaq, but I need to write the bios floppies) with the following specs

Windows 98 SE
Intel 815 chipset mobo (with onboard sound)
Pentium 3 @ 1 GHz
512MB RAM
Ati Rage Fury / Xpert 2000 video card
among other, non important parts.

I figured a card and processor from 1999 or so (build date on PC is 2001) should run games like Half-Life quite well, but it doesn't.
I've made a video of games that I've downloaded and have had issues with. Here's a list if you don't want to watch the video

Currently, everything is run through Daemon Tools or a noCD crack, but I obtained some CD's yesterday to start burning games if that is for some reason one of the issues.

In order of the video:
Grim Fandango - 3D acceleration does not work, Manny's model just loses 80% of his textures for some reason, runs fine in software mode
Half-Life - OpenGL 640 x 480 is barely stable, Direct3D is more stable but has weird control input issues, software runs almost perfectly fine
DOOM (MS-DOS) - Has weird artifacting in the menus
Black & White - Very laggy even at the very lowest settings, intro cutscene did not have correct lighting

Here is the video. I also go over the settings the adapter is currently at and what driver patch it is

What I've done so far is new thermal paste on the P3, and I went back to school and rummaged through some cabinets to find an identical rage fury/xpert 2000, that I swapped into the computer with a near identical result.

I ran the tests available to me in device manager as well, and they all passed.

Please let me know if this was posted in an inappropriate sub-forum, or if there's anything else I can do.

Thank you!

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 1 of 18, by igna78

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Hello and welcome. Since this is such an old PC, I guess you've given everything a good clean (dust is no friend) and then have checked that the motherboard and video card capacitors are in good condition (although after 20 years, it could be need to change them even if they look good). Maybe if you post photos of the aforementioned components, we understand what state they are in 😉

Reply 2 of 18, by reverb

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I did not notice any leaky capacitors, but I also did not take out the motherboard to do a full analysis.

https://imgur.com/a/smMUvo5

There's an album link of some photos I took, hopefully they're sufficient

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 3 of 18, by sirotkaslo

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This is a good board, i had the same, it has Tualatin support, rock solid.

As for the gpu, i think ati has driver issues back then. If you do some searching you'll find a lot of people with half life issues.

Reply 4 of 18, by igna78

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From what I see in the photo, the capacitors appear to be in good condition 😉
At this point, I would proceed like this: replacing the video card (choosing a GeForce MX - very compatible with DOS and Win9x games), restoring the computer with fresh installation of the operating system, drivers (there are various discussions here on vogons about which drivers nVidia use on Win9x) and games and programs. In short, a good job 😄

Reply 5 of 18, by Hezus

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The ATI Rage series had a pretty bad name back in the day mainly because of the crappy driver support. Some people even paid extra to get the ATI Rage Fury Maxx which had 2 processing cores, but games hardly supported it well (again, lack of driver support). So better stay clear of those cards.

If you want something appropiate for the Pentium III era (around 2000), then find yourself a GeForce 2 series card (Ultra or GTS, there's also MX but that was the budget line). If you want to stay with ATI/AMD, look into the early models from the Radeon line (like the R100). The other alternative is a 3DFX Voodoo 4 or 5, but you'll have to get lucky and probably spend a bunch of cash to get one of those. And they aren't any better than the previously mentioned cards, just valued a lot by collectors.

I really dig that case design. It's so boxy but still has a certain charm to it 😀 Pretty cool system. What kind of soundchip do you have on that motherboard?

Visit my YT Channel!

Reply 6 of 18, by DosFreak

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So I've decided to leave this thread open BUT:
We do not support so called "abandonware" here.
So called "abandonware" does not exist.
We only support legally acquired games here.
If you a user is deceptive enough to not use certain words then it goes unnoticed but in this case you phrased things a certain way which is why this post was flagged

VOGONS only supports legally acquired games so that:
We do not get into trouble
We do not attract undesirables
We do not waste our time troubleshooting broken games that were not broken by the original developer but by someone or something else

DOSBox Compilation Guides
DosBox Feature Request Thread
PC Game Compatibility List
How To Ask Questions The Smart Way
Running DRM games offline

Reply 7 of 18, by reverb

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DosFreak wrote on 2022-04-01, 15:37:
So I've decided to leave this thread open BUT: We do not support so called "abandonware" here. So called "abandonware" does not […]
Show full quote

So I've decided to leave this thread open BUT:
We do not support so called "abandonware" here.
So called "abandonware" does not exist.
We only support legally acquired games here.
If you a user is deceptive enough to not use certain words then it goes unnoticed but in this case you phrased things a certain way which is why this post was flagged

VOGONS only supports legally acquired games so that:
We do not get into trouble
We do not attract undesirables
We do not waste our time troubleshooting broken games that were not broken by the original developer but by someone or something else

I understand and apologize for my poor choice of words, and will be better in the future.

Hezus wrote on 2022-04-01, 14:08:

I really dig that case design. It's so boxy but still has a certain charm to it 😀 Pretty cool system. What kind of soundchip do you have on that motherboard?

There's a second identical one at school, but it has a P4 in it, I've been thinking of getting it as well. I haven't checked which soundchip is on the motherboard, but I know it uses 3DMAX sound drivers.

edit: I wanted to add that I was considering a Soundblaster 5.1 Live or an Audigy / some other soundcard for better midi synths and less strain on the CPU, but that isn't an immediate rush for me

I thank everyone for their advice, and I will look for a better graphics card.

The only cards for sale locally currently are
Matrox Millenium G400 (32mb)
Radeon 7000 (32mb & 64mb)

I believe the G400 is decently solid, but I'm not sure if the Millenium makes any significant difference.
I believe the Radeon 7000 is the RV100? I'm still quite green with the hardware.

If it is just recommended to wait for a Geforce 2 / MX series, I will wait and just play DOS Quake (which runs great!) in the meantime.

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 8 of 18, by Hezus

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reverb wrote on 2022-04-01, 22:14:
I understand and apologize for my poor choice of words, and will be better in the future. […]
Show full quote
DosFreak wrote on 2022-04-01, 15:37:
So I've decided to leave this thread open BUT: We do not support so called "abandonware" here. So called "abandonware" does not […]
Show full quote

So I've decided to leave this thread open BUT:
We do not support so called "abandonware" here.
So called "abandonware" does not exist.
We only support legally acquired games here.
If you a user is deceptive enough to not use certain words then it goes unnoticed but in this case you phrased things a certain way which is why this post was flagged

VOGONS only supports legally acquired games so that:
We do not get into trouble
We do not attract undesirables
We do not waste our time troubleshooting broken games that were not broken by the original developer but by someone or something else

I understand and apologize for my poor choice of words, and will be better in the future.

Hezus wrote on 2022-04-01, 14:08:

I really dig that case design. It's so boxy but still has a certain charm to it 😀 Pretty cool system. What kind of soundchip do you have on that motherboard?

There's a second identical one at school, but it has a P4 in it, I've been thinking of getting it as well. I haven't checked which soundchip is on the motherboard, but I know it uses 3DMAX sound drivers.

edit: I wanted to add that I was considering a Soundblaster 5.1 Live or an Audigy / some other soundcard for better midi synths and less strain on the CPU, but that isn't an immediate rush for me

I thank everyone for their advice, and I will look for a better graphics card.

The only cards for sale locally currently are
Matrox Millenium G400 (32mb)
Radeon 7000 (32mb & 64mb)

I believe the G400 is decently solid, but I'm not sure if the Millenium makes any significant difference.
I believe the Radeon 7000 is the RV100? I'm still quite green with the hardware.

If it is just recommended to wait for a Geforce 2 / MX series, I will wait and just play DOS Quake (which runs great!) in the meantime.

That soundcard seems like a good idea. With an Audigy card you can get great 3D 5.1 or 7.1 support if you like that.

The GeForce cards were always ahead of the competition, especially in around 2000. So if you can wait for one, you should probably do so. Some other cards might be fine too but since you like DOS games as well, Nvidia cards have great legacy support as well.

Here's a great list of legacy support:
https://gona.mactar.hu/DOS_TESTS/

Visit my YT Channel!

Reply 9 of 18, by igna78

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If you are looking for a good DOS and Win9x compatible video card, I think you should wait until you find a GeForce MX (generally they have an excellent price / quality ratio)

Reply 10 of 18, by reverb

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It looks like I'll wait for a GeForce MX for now, but I will add I have this nice Compaq that is a P1/MMX with a S3 Virge that just needs a hard drive and BIOS floppies (which the floppy drive on the P3 is acting weird, so I haven't been able to deal with that yet) that should be able to deal with games like Wasteland and earlier DOS games.

About 4 years ago I was also gifted a P2 from my High School teacher, but I hadn't touched it as it needed a PSU, RAM, and Hard Drive. Thanks to my college I've now gotten those parts (minus the HDD) so I could dig it out and mess with that too, tinkering with the hardware is fun 😀

Attachments

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 11 of 18, by reverb

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I just double checked local listings - and I see an ASUS GeForce V7100T, which I believe is a GeForce 2 MX? It's only $10, so it may be the card I should get...

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 12 of 18, by igna78

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reverb wrote on 2022-04-02, 19:34:

I just double checked local listings - and I see an ASUS GeForce V7100T, which I believe is a GeForce 2 MX? It's only $10, so it may be the card I should get...

I'd say it's a good deal if it works 😉

To start it is the right card, in the future you will evaluate whether to update it (and I advise you to stay in the nVidia area up to the FX5xxx series to maintain compatibility with old games)

Good luck 😁

Reply 13 of 18, by reverb

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GeForce 2 guy never responded... but I did find a GeForce FX 5600XT for $20... how's the compatibility of that card with 98SE?

I also wanted to ask more about DirectX, a thread I saw talking about FX card compatibility a user mentioned they believe 7.1+ doesn't run as well and should be relegated to an XP machine. Just wanted to ask if that's a general agreement statement and if i should relegate games that use higher directX to an XP machine

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 14 of 18, by sirotkaslo

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Fully compatible with 98SE. I use the fx5900xt with V2 sli in my dual boo win98se/xp machine. Make sure it's not the 64bit version - that one SUCKS! 128bit is comparable with the radeon 9600se.

If possible, i'd go for a GF4 ti 4200, those are usually found for cheap (around 20€ or less) and it will be faster that the FX5600xt.

Reply 15 of 18, by reverb

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How can I tell if it is 64 bit or 128 bit? Theres a P.N. tag on an IC that says 128VB which I assume I'd 128 bit but im not certain.

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 17 of 18, by reverb

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This is all I have currently, but I'll ask the seller as well.

Also found a MSI GeForce 4 MX440 64MB 128 bit for the same price but I'd need to get it shipped to me, don't know if that's a good choice as well

Attachments

Compaq Deskpro 4000 - Pentium MMX, S3 Virge (Not working)
Pentium 2
Pentium 3
Pentium 4 (Not working)
Pentium 4 HT

Reply 18 of 18, by sirotkaslo

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Before i'd buy the 5600xt i would make sure it's 128bit, otherwise this gf4 mx is a faster GPU. GF4 mx is great with a 1ghz p3, it will play most games from that era just fine.