[SATLUG] An AT (antique computer) question

Don Crowder donguitar at gmail.com
Wed May 7 17:58:05 CDT 2008


I'm tinkering with an old AT whitebox (Cyrix M-II 333) which has two RAM 
slots for typical 66 MHz RAM cards, the type of cards which go into the 
slot at a roughly 45 degree angle and lock in place when the card is 
raised to 90 degrees.  Right next to those RAM sockets is what looks 
like an ordinary PC100 RAM slot (I'm guessing I should have typed PC66 
but that's only conjecture on my part as I've never seen one).  What's 
the story on that third, different slot?  Does anyone know?

Next, the thing doesn't have enough onboard video RAM to get above 
four-bit, 640 X 480 resolution.  I plugged in a PCI video card but 
couldn't make it work.  I couldn't find any reference to video in the 
bios and couldn't find a physical jumper either.  It's got two PCI slots 
and two AGP slots but I don't have an AGP video card.  Suggestions?

I know, you're thinking "why wouldn't an old geek know about old 
hardware?" but hey, I never took the cover off a computer before 2006.

This is just one I'm playing with.  A friend gave me three old 
"clunkers", the first of which was an eMachine running a Cyrix M-II 333 
processor.  I swapped the processor to an AMD K6-2 500, expanded the RAM 
to 256 MB and installed PCFluxboxOS (tinyflux) on it which looks and 
runs great though it's a little slow.

The second is the one I'm tinkering with at the moment (AT style 
whitebox) which was running a Cyrix M-11 233 with 32 MB of RAM.  I 
swapped the processor for the one I removed from the other computer 
(jumper tables on the motherboard were tough to read but gave me the 
info I needed) scounged through a bunch of computer parts a friend gave 
me and found a couple of RAM cards that fit, giving  it a total of 80 MB 
with both plugged in.  If it likes the slightly-better processor and I 
can get a video card to run in it I'll try to find a distro that does it 
justice.  Otherwise it gets hauled off for materials recycling.

The third was running an Intel 486-DX2 and was in pretty bad shape so 
its been earmarked for materials recycling.

Thanks in advance
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Don Crowder
http://www.lockergnome.com/eldergeek/
http://www.freelists.org/list/donspatch
http://don-guitar.blogspot.com/
http://www.myspace.com/donguitar
A proud user of Debian Etch w/KDE.


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