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More fun with Compaq

creepingnet

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2005
Messages
1,036
Location
Sparks, NV
Over the weekend,in between crap I'd rather not get into, got some more work done on the Compaq Deskpro 386s/20...

- fixed Dallas DS1287 chip (put on a CR2302 holder from a dead PC Chips board)
- Installed MS-DOS 6.22 w/ Supplimental Disk
- Ordered front cover plate, bought screws, so they are all the same ones
- Ordered Compaq branded PS/2 mouse
- Figured out the Keyboard clicker feature so I could turn it up and down (CTRL+ALT "+" or "-")
- Found out my 3com Etherlink II is dead (bad RAM on the card), replaced with the last boxed Linksys I had
- Got networking all setup and going (mTCP, Links), Links does not work so might try Arachne
- moved a bunch of games to it for testing performance: Wolfenstein 3D, Monkey ISland 1 & 2, Ultima VI, Leisure Suit Larry 1/2/3, Sim City Lemmings.....

Performance-wise, it runs about like I'd expect a 386SX to, just a few hairs faster than the GEM 286 runs. It's the perfect speed for things like Ultima VI and Wolfenstein 3D, anything newer it might be too slow for. Next up will be some ircjr and some telnet BBSing, and maybe messing with Arachne because Links Lite and Links makes the machine barf up at the DOS prompt.

It's future right now is still in the deciding phase. There's a part of me that wants to rip out the 75MHz 486 upgrade chip and run it as a true 386Sx, but there's another part of me that wants to leave it as/is because that is a cool thing to say it has (even though it does not seem to improve much). I'm thinking some benchmarks might be in order for the machine just to see how it does, as I am a tad skeptical about just pressing some thingy on top of a CPU as an "upgrade".
 

resman

Experienced Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2014
Messages
475
Location
Lake Tahoe
Those 486 upgrades should boost speed quite a bit actually.
Yeah, I have a Compaq 368/20e upgraded with the Cyrix 486DRx2. It gives a nice performance pop *if* the Cyrix utilities are used to enable all the features. Otherwise, it isn't a great deal faster. So there might be some utility that enables the cache and such on the 486 plug-in (press-on?) upgrade to get the full benefit.
 

creepingnet

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2005
Messages
1,036
Location
Sparks, NV
My upgrade chip is one of those "press on" jobbies. I have to wonder, since these were primarily aimed at DOS/Windows users at the time, how in the heck they were getting good performance in Linux 2.0.3 on that thing (that's what it had on it) if it required some kind of TSR to work. I took some pictures of it when I had it out. Quite a bit bigger than Adrian Digital Basement's piece, lol. I see it has 2 little connectors on the top piece.

It appears it's an IBM 486BLX3 25/75MHz - so probably underclocked on a 20MHz 386SX at 60MHz (hehehe, 60MHz 486, this is a new one...now I have a 40 (versa 40EC), 50 (Versa V/50), and now a 60MHz 486 (underclocked 75Mhz upgrade chip). - https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct...-no2396.html&usg=AOvVaw1z_iUMJn2CO5eSgPr9-_LF

That said, I did run it pretty hard last night and it did not even flinch about much except going to glennmcc's page for Arachne APMs (Frame Traceback IPS), and trying to run Links again. That said, kind of fun working in the limited parameters of 1991 instead of like I usually do which is just max everything out in a way that never would have existed at the time.

LMK if the pictures of the upgrade don't show.

70X1iOXtMWx444gvOa7r5NfWVulsLFi6o762zkH-v1l-0RX1fABKFsvmIBfPYZsDY8jZk3oTircfAT8qP5MEuaikEE3LhplCAPhl0DJ8Loicv4v93Pzb0ajPii5F-XUtsd8juPG8UbB4kH-XyKCQQpkn9vSoRBUSlPOyz_tDoMlv3ukZz5kXKnd_SUcVXI7CV2Qy_mp2HumcSMGqF6GSimhKs1z6pz7crkCEcByfJAerYWzR3nGaP3to1adsYHImFiZ_OxJirxl8FPZt-yUOIpFSZS3Ndfv-TIcho602JzRHPYTBXqnkQHflzns3-nz48-qgoQApG1UdF4Do00KPNUJNHWJBKXOuL_l80AiJMHHS-Iocfzxpiwl6NgylK3Ivtri99L1HePIgkum0Tcs1nk4TdewVTjvW3QimpDmDmTZFgxtJVcHU0Q9qnSrYPD_vyGT6w6oMBJMvhrY2StcIw_Ul05JImq0Bt6UtwwN05Cu_0QcHQfDKZkGb_jHFCWWEZhBDkwxuJNGGhwjOJFbVEk6qm0DlEhMVL37D5kuBGjnRRFXs2UqtZHPHhhpHHNwm1u75KdLHhmwCycwv2xOrF78Fgw-xEQ8SoEeYZDl7dullSO9cUnoWSETuQfmeHf9SkfClc4Xq5eYjw3Em5tjMVohUVmdMgO-p84S5Gkw0iWfILKOPsMuIdsv5m0q7EcWYgdnN1wYqqYp-ob7NfL3x0UL27g=w725-h543-no
HVceRy2e9Y-TRU3Gt0d0AVxn3hUW_-urVx2glGE_g7Cr-kW_HDg9pd-zHO_0slM8ShaXW9O9Zj6y4D3C4GYZAtN1WLhHS1r-JddqqQgL7PVZTdkFinl3_8g-c8PzvNvXyVXNfGG5uSG2edPmVDhEsfmaOVfQT07bIGtRmtgcXKOFTGyprySvssJ93nP5bvCLWq8YebKT5uy8X2lYIKhhDhF2juz931JqCFjz3fuJMCTkFjyoiDRgYH51ZcRWi0QrIA4seSISRdSZl4w3chrG-ynIPHEnPAIYjppFKC674gvM4Won2FJ3Txrjd6JuEs_noWFNTr8OTi7iPHrBtsZ_07W36bmFHhFFLZ2_hAEfXGgKVKrnxlNE1LxdEKRK0josLJPc9XGxqvrIwuxbl2_Seys29omZinQ0cZOtva6IosaF3jZoQnjot6NgwrqfNjHHGAHc0HJ7nwZ0mJ8i-x6Ams-EJjKa182b2QWSdR1ezTaSx-BY0vxx6LO-rBJXIPD1Ml2off4kcrL9MutQeqEO0HfKP-AXGjQT33JGgIvgCh9cjAVKGBQTfrDIPin4q8AkQyD4Uy53usK61rhQFGnAn2n6htjL97rscTcTT-1d_aPcQfNrcViKzLHxWKZUX0GXNqXj53YSJxjAMqp8DeW4ho1pef7u9yN4cEWaEjzwyIzPxlZ1B_B5W2UqasYprsYG0nXEnHY1yHqZhAZCrNxqDrtb4g=w725-h543-no
 
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tradde

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Messages
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Katy, Tx
I remember my BBS days. I had a 386 system and upgraded to 486. Many users noticed the speed difference I guess of the better response time? They liked it.
 

creepingnet

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2005
Messages
1,036
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Sparks, NV
Wow, kind of thought this chip upgrade was rare. I'm def going to try those Cyrix tools with it and see if maybe I can really make it really scream. A few places I was reading were saying something about it being one of those fabled IBM "Blue Lightning" chips. I have no shortage of RAM having 10MB to work with so TSRs don't bother me at all. Actaully I seem to keep at least 547 of 640K base RAM free most of the time and that's with AMOUSE, packet driver, and mTCP TSRs loaded.

That said I do see moments when that chip is really responsive. Arachne runs almost as good as it does on my Am486 DX4-100 SV8T, though downloading is slow. Sim City really came up fast. And FTPserv has been surprisingly quick as well. The main stuff that did not impress me as much at first glance were games, Ultima VI in particular seemed to run about the same as it does on my GEM 286.

Actually, something fun for my YouTube channel might be doing a triple-shot of Benchmarks on this PC. Remove the upgrade, benchmark it as a stock 386 SX-20, then as the upgraded version then with the utilities installed and working. Sort of show what's really happening. I've actually been planning to benchmark all of my systems at some point with speedsys and post the results to YouTube.
 
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creepingnet

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Messages
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It looks like you have the *!!!RARE!!!* Blue Lightning triple clocked CPU. With 16K cache - my poor Cyrix 486DRx2 only has 1K. You might try the Cyrix tools to see if they enable any features: https://www.philscomputerlab.com/cyrix-486dlc.html
Just confirmed (see new post in this blog) - this chip is indeed a 486 BLX3 with 16K L2 Cache. It's the Evergreen RevTo486 upgrade chip, and I've been using it "wrong" this whole time (no driver loaded). Put the drivers on it and it RIPS. That Compaq is like 2 computers in one now.
 

VERAULT

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Creepingnet, those photos aren't showing.

Sorry, still havent figured out how to quote anyone.. the button doesnt seem to do anything.
 

rmay635703

Experienced Member
Joined
May 29, 2003
Messages
443
Location
Wisconsin
As an FYI
most sx20 systems will bus “overclock “ to 24mhz

Why 1mhz shy of 25myz, no idea but most of mine seem to be rated for 24mhz FSB

So it’s possible you could hit 72mhz just yet
 

creepingnet

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2005
Messages
1,036
Location
Sparks, NV
As an FYI
most sx20 systems will bus “overclock “ to 24mhz

Why 1mhz shy of 25myz, no idea but most of mine seem to be rated for 24mhz FSB

So it’s possible you could hit 72mhz just yet

Neato, I did not know that. I maybe thought it was some kind of glitch like with my 10MHz 286 that runs at 12MHz by virtue of having a 12MHz 802c87 (IIT) installed.
 
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