Table of Contents

  1. Introduction

  2. Why PCI?

     2.1 General overview
     2.2 Performance
     2.3 The onboard-SCSI-II-chip NCR53c810
     2.4 Drew Eckhardt on PCI-SCSI:
     2.5 New Alpha Version of the NCR driver
     2.6 The EATA-DMA driver and the PCI SCSI controllers from DPT
     2.7 BT-946C fully supported with kernel 1.3.x and newer
     2.8 Future Domain TMC-3260 PCI SCSI
     2.9 other thoughts on scsi

  3. ASUS-Boards

     3.1 ASUS and the NMI (Parity) -- impact on Gravis-Ultrasound
     3.2 Various types of ASUS Boards
        3.2.1 ASUS SP3 with saturn chipset I (rev. 2) for 486,
        3.2.2 ASUS SP3G with saturn chipset II (rev. 4) for 486,
        3.2.3 ASUS SP3-SiS chipset, for 486
        3.2.4 ASUS AP4, for 486, with PCI/ISA/VesaLocalbus
        3.2.5 ASUS SP4-SiS, for Pentium90, PCI/ISA
        3.2.6 ASUS TP4 with Triton chipset and EDO-Support
        3.2.7 ASUS TP4XE with Triton chipset and additional SRAM/EDORAM support
        3.2.8 ...and many others now.
     3.3 Benchmarks on ASUS Mainboards
        3.3.1 ASUS SP3 with amd486DX4-100
        3.3.2 ASUS SP3 with amd486DX4-120
        3.3.3 ASUS SP3 with intel486DX2-66
        3.3.4 ASUS TP4/XE with intel586-90
        3.3.5 ASUS TP4/XE with intel586-100
     3.4 Detailed information on the old ASUS PCI-I-SP3 with saturn chipset from
     3.5 Pat Dowler (dowler@pt1B1106.FSH.UVic.CA) with ASUS SP3G

  4. confusion about saturn chipsets

  5. Video-Cards

  6. Ethernet Cards

     6.1 3com-3c590-tpo
     6.2 DEC435 PCI NIC

  7. Motherboards

     7.1 ASUS
     7.2 Micronics P54i-90
     7.3 SA486P AIO-II
     7.4 Sirius SPACE
     7.5 Gateway-2000
     7.6 Intel-Premiere
     7.7 DELL Poweredge SP4100 - successful
     7.8 DELL OptiPlex Gl+ 575 - successful when turning off plug and play
     7.9 Comtrade Best Buy PCI / PCI48X MB Rev 1.0
     7.10 IDeal PCI / PCI48X MB Rev 1.0
     7.11 CMD Tech. PCI IDE / CSA-6400C
     7.12 GA-486iS (Gigabyte)
     7.13 GA-586-ID (Gigabyte) 90 Mhz Pentium PCI/EISA Board
     7.14 ESCOM 486dx2/66 - which board?
     7.15 J-Bond with i486dx2/66
     7.16 super micro 011895 03:50 SUPER P54CI-PCI rev 1.3 (Opti)

  8. reports on success

     8.1 GigaByte GA486-AM with AMD Am5x86-133-WB @ 160MHz (40MHz PCI)
     8.2 California Graphics - Sunray II Pro
     8.3 Micronics P54i-90 (
     8.4 Angelo Haritsis ( about SA486P AIO-II:
     8.5 about his Micronics M5Pi
     8.6 Simon Karpen ( with Micronics M54pi
     8.7 Goerg von Below ( about DELL Poweredge
     8.8 about Gateway2000 P-66
     8.9 James D. Levine ( with Gateway2000
     8.10 with SPACE
     8.11 with INTEL
     8.12 Jermoe Meyers ( with Intel Premiere
     8.13 Timothy Demarest ( Intel Plato Premiere II
        8.13.1 Flash Bios upgrades
        8.13.2 NCR 53c810 BIOSless PCI SCSI
        8.13.3 apart from that - plug and play!
     8.14 with ASUS
     8.15 with ASUS
     8.16 Lars Heinemann ( with ASUS
     8.17 Ruediger.Funck@Physik.TU-Muenchen.DE with ASUS
     8.18 robert logan ( with GW/2000)
     8.19 archie@CS.Berkeley.EDU and his friend use ASUS
     8.20 Michael Will with ASUS-SP3 486 (the old one)
     8.21 Mike Frisch ( Giga-Byte 486IM
     8.22 Karl Keyte (kkeyte@esoc.bitnet) Gigabyte GA586 Pentium
     8.23 with G/W 2000
     8.24 Joerg Wedeck ( / ESCOM
     8.25 Ulrich Teichert / ASUS

  9. Reports of problems

     9.1 Compaq PCI systems, especially Presarios
     9.2 VLSI Wildcat PCI chipset like in Zeos P120 box
     9.3 G/W 2000
     9.4 (Frank Hofmann) / ASUS
     9.5 (Axel Mahler) / ASUS
     9.6 Frank Strauss ( / ASUS
     9.7 / ASUS
     9.8 / GigaByte
     9.9 Steve Durst ( with UMC 8500 mainboard
     9.10 Tom Drabenstott (tldraben@Teleport.Com) with Comtrade / PCI48IX

  10. General tips for PCI-Motherboard + Linux NCR PCI SCSI

     10.1 DON'Ts:
     10.2 SIMM slots
     10.3 Praised PCI Pentium motherboard
     10.4 irq-lines
     10.5 Info about the different NCR 8xx family scsi chips:
        10.5.1 53C810
        10.5.2 53C815
        10.5.3 53C825
     10.6 future of 53c8xx
     10.7 Performance of the 53c810
     10.8 News about NCR53c825 support
     10.9 Frederic POTTER ( about Pentium+NCR+Strap_bug
     10.10 PCIprobe in the latest Linux Kernels by Frederic Potter
     10.11 Other PCI Devices
        10.11.1 Cyclades: a 16-port PCI RISC-based multiport card.

  11. Conclusion

  12. Thanks

  13. copyright/legalese

  14. GPL - Gnu Public License

  1.  Introduction

  Many people, including me, would like to run Linux on a PCI-based
  machine.  Since it is not obvious which PCI motherboards and PCI cards
  will work with Linux and which do not, I conducted a survey and spent
  some hours to compile the information contained herein. Most of this
  was done before 1997 and more uptodate technology might be covered in
  the device specific howtos such as the XFree86, Xinerama, Networking
  and Hardware-HOWTO.

  If you have information to add, please mail me. If you have questions,
  feel free to ask.

  Help with my style/grammar/language is welcome as well. I am not a
  native- speaker of English and expect to make occasional mistakes.

  Note: "on-board chip" refers to a SCSI chip integrated onto the
  motherboard rather than on a PCI expansion card.

  Also, "quotes" herein may have slight context editing.

  2.  Why PCI?

  2.1.  General overview

  The PC-architecture has several BUS-Systems to choose from:

        16 or 8bit, cheap, slow (usually 8Mhz), standard, many cards

        32bit, expensive, fast, few cards available, fading>

        32 or 16bit ex-IBM-proprietary, fast, becoming rare>

        32bit, based on 486 architecture, cheap, fast, many cards

        32bit (64 bit coming), cheap, fast, many cards available,
        nowadays standard>

  MCA worked fine, but never achieved much market, being used on only
  some early IBM PS/2 machines. There were very few cards.

  EISA was reliable, but rather expensive, and intended more for
  servers, than for the average user. It has the next fewest cards

  VESA-Local-Bus (VLB) had some problems with high bus-speeds, and was
  not very reliable, but mainly due to its low price and better-than-ISA
  performance, sold very well. Technically, it's almost a direct map of
  the 486 processor bus.  Most VESA boards should be stable by now.  At
  the beginning of 1996, many 486 motherboards still support VESA, but
  PCI is growing.  VESA busses are tied directly to the speed of the
  memory bus for 486's, or half the speed for Pentiums.
  PCI now has the advantage. Like EISA it is not proprietary. It is as
  faster than EISA or MCA, and cheaper.  Most current Pentium
  motherboards use the PCI bus; VESA is fading.  Virtualy all PCI
  motherboards and cards sold at the beginning of 1996 are 32 bit, and
  run at 0-33 MHz.

  Currently, most Pentium motherboards run the PCI bus at 1/2 the memory
  speed (ie: 33 MHz for the 66 MHz memory bus on the P66,P100,P133,P166;
  30 MHz for the 60 MHz memory bus on the P60,P90,P120,P150; and 25 Mhz
  on the 50 MHz memory bus of the P75).  This is probably true of Cyrix
  6x86 motherboards too.  NexGen 5x86 implemention isn't known.  The PCI
  spec does allow the PCI bus to be run asynchronously from the
  processor, (eg: 33 Mhz bus on P75), but this is not common yet.

  PCI 2.1 has been defined, allowing 64 bit PCI, and/or 0-66 MHz
  operations, but no x86 chipsets yet support these options.  64 bit PCI
  will probably appear first, in 32/64 bit dual compatible versions.
  That is, you will be able to mix 32 and 64 bit cards.  66 MHz PCI will
  take longer, as it's technically demanding, can only support one or
  maybe two slots per bridge, and may not work well with 33 MHz cards.

  PCI is not processor dependent like the VESA Local-Bus. This means you
  can use the winner-1000-PCI in an Alpha-driven-PCI computer as well as
  in a i486/Pentium-driven PCI computer, with the appropriate BIOS and
  software.  Beside Intel and DEC Alpha platforms, PCI is used on some

  Some PCI variations to be aware of: some implementations support "Bus
  Master" cards in all PCI slots, some in only one slot, and some not at
  all; some implementations support "bridging" on cards and some do not.

  2.2.  Performance

  taken from Craig Sutphin's early Pro-PCI-Propaganda

       Unlike some local buses, which are aimed at speeding up
       graphics alone, the PCI Local Bus is a total system solu­
       tion, providing increased performance for networks, disk
       drives, full-motion video, graphics and the full range of
       high-speed peripherals. At 33 MHz, the synchronous PCI Local
       Bus transfers 32 bits of data at up to 132 Mbytes/sec. A
       transparent 64-bit extension of the 32-bit data and address
       buses can double the bus bandwidth (264 Mbytes/sec) and
       offer forward and backwards compatibility for 32 and 64-bit
       PCI Local Bus peripherals. Because it is processor-indepen­
       dent, the PCI Local Bus is optimized for I/O functions,
       enabling the local bus to operate concurrent with the pro­
       cessor/memory subsystem.  For users of high-end desktop
       PC's, PCI makes high reliability, high performance and ease
       of use more affordable than ever before; no trivial task at
       33 MHz bus-clock rates. Variable length linear or toggle
       mode bursting for both reads and writes improves write
       dependent graphics performance. By comprehending the loading
       and frequency requirements of the local bus at the component
       level, buffers and glue logic are eliminated.

  See the chapter about Benchmarks for some crude (and perhaps
  meaningless) benchmarks on ASUS PCI Boards with 486 and 586.

  2.3.  The onboard-SCSI-II-chip NCR53c810

  One very nice feature of some PCI mother boards is the NCR onboard-
  SCSI-II-chip, which is said to be as fast as the EISA-Adaptec-1742,
  but much cheaper. Drivers for DOS/OS2 are available. Drew Eckard has
  released his version of his NCR53c810-driver, which is in the standard
  kernel since v1.2.

  This works so well I sold my adaptec-1542B-ISA soon after I bought the
  ASUS SP3-saturn-chipset II PCI board, and found the onboard NCR-SCSI
  controller to be much faster.

  The NCR53c810-chip is onboard on some PCI-motherboards.  There are
  add-on-boards available too, for about US$ 70.00.

  There is only one thing I noticed did not work with the NCR-drivers
  when I tried them. Disconnect/Reconnect did not work, so using a SCSI-
  tape could be a pain, especially when using "mt erase" or the like
  blocks the whole SCSI-bus until it has finished. Since this was very
  unsatisfying for me, I bought one of these nice but expensive DPT PCI
  SCSI controller and had no such problems anymore.

  People have reported this problem has been solved by Drew by now.

  FreeBSD does support the NCR53c810 for quite a long time already,
  including Tagged Command Queues, FAST, WIDE and Disconnect for NCR
  53c810, 815, 825. Drew said, it would be possible to adapt the FreeBSD
  driver to Linux. I somewhere saw some patches to do exactly this, any
  pointer to the location?

  I personaly have the impression there are some important wheels
  invented more than once because of the differently evolving of FreeBSD
  and Linux. Some more cooperation could do both systems very well...

  2.4.  Drew Eckhardt on PCI-SCSI:

  Drew said on end of March 95 about the SCSI on PCI: (slightly edited
  for clarity in context)

  The Adaptec 2940, Buslogic BT946, BT946W, DPT PCI boards, Future
  Domain 3260, NCR53c810, NCR53c815, NCR53c820, and NCR53c825 all work
  for some definition of the word works.

  ·  The Adaptec 2940 suffers from the same cabling sensitivity that
     plagues all recent boards, but otherwise works fine.

  ·  The Future Domain boards are not busmasters, and the driver doesn't
     support multiple simultaenous commands.  If you don't (currently)
     need multiple simultaneous commands, get a NCR board, which will be
     cheaper and is busmastering.  If you need multiple simultaneous
     commands, get a Buslogic.

  ·  The Buslogic BT956W will do WIDE SCSI with the Linux drivers
     (although you can't use targets 8-15), the Adaptec 2940W (with one
     line patch to the 2940 driver) won't, nor will the NCR53c820 and

  ·  The NCR boards are dirt cheap (< $ 70 US), are generally quite
     fast, but the driver currently doesn't support multiple
     simultaenous commands. Alpha which do neat things like
     disconnect/reconnect and synchronous transfer are now publicly
     available, see below.

  ·  Emulux, Forex, and other unmentioned PCI SCSI controllers will not

  2.5.  New Alpha Version of the NCR driver

  Well, this is not exactly *that* new anymore, please try to he
  versions which are in the kernel by version 2.0.x before going for
  this entry.

  Alpha versions of the NCR driver which do neat things like
  disconnect/reconnect and synchronous transfers are now publically
  available.  Any one interested in playing with them should

  ·  Join the NCR mailing list, by sending mail to with subscribe ncr53c810 in the text.

  ·  Get all of the readmes, and latest diffs file from

  2.6.  The EATA-DMA driver and the PCI SCSI controllers from DPT

  The EATA-DMA scsi driver has undergone extensive changes and now also
  supports PCI SCSI controllers, multiple controllers and all SCSI
  channels on the multichannel SmartCache/Raid boards in all
  combinations of WIDE, FAST-20 (ULTRA) and DIFFERENTIAL.

  The driver supports all EATA-DMA Protocol (CAM document CAM/89-004
  rev. 2.0c) compliant SCSI controllers and has been tested with many of
  those controllers in mixed combinations.

  Those are:             (ISA)   (EISA) (PCI)
        DPT Smartcache: PM2011  PM2012B
        Smartcache III: PM2021  PM2022  PM2024
                                PM2122  PM2124
        Smartcache IV:  PM2041  PM2042  PM2044
                                PM2142  PM2144
        SmartRAID     : PM3021  PM3122
                                PM3222  PM3224
        and some controllers from NEC, AT&T, SNI, AST, Olivetti and Alphatronix.

  On a "base" DPT card (no caching or RAID module), a MC680x0 controls
  the bus-mastering DMA chip(s) and the SCSI controller chip.  The DPT
  SCSI card almost works like a SCSI coprocessor.

  The DPT card also will emulate an IDE controller/drive (ST506
  interface), which enables you to use it with all operating systems
  even if they don't have an EATA driver.

  On a card with the caching module, the 680x0 maintains and manages the
  on-board cacheing.  The DPT card supports up to 64 MB RAM for disk-

  On a card with the RAID module, the 680x0 also performs the management
  of the RAID, doing the mirroring on RAID-1, doing the striping and ECC
  info generation on RAID-5, etc.
  The entry level boards utilize a Motorola 68000, the high-end, more
  raid specific DPT cards use a 68020, 68030 or 68040/40MHz processor.

  Official list prices range from $ 265 to $1.645 (January 18, 1996)

  Since I've been asked numerous times where you can buy those boards in
  Europe, I asked DPT to send me a list of their official European
  distributors. Here is a small excerpt:

  Austria: Macrotron GmbH            Tel:+43 1 408 15430   Fax:+43 1 408 1545
  Denmark: Tallgrass Technologies A/S Tel:+45 86 14 7000   Fax:+45 86 14 7333
  Finland: Computer 2000 Finnland OY Tel:+35 80 887 331    Fax:+35 80 887 333 43
  France : Chip Technologies         Tel:+33 1 49 60 1011  Fax:+33 1 49 599350
  Germany: Akro Datensysteme GmbH    Tel:+49 (0)89 3178701 Fax:+49 (0)89 31787299
  Russia : Soft-tronik               Tel:+7 812 315 92 76  Fax:+7 812 311 01 08
  U.K.   : Ambar Systems Ltd.        Tel:+44 1296 311 300  Fax:+44 296 479 461

  "IMHO, the DPT cards are the best-designed SCSI cards available for a
  PC.  And I've written code for just about every type of SCSI card for
  the PC.  (Although, in retrospect, I don't know why!) ;-)" Jon R.
  Taylor ( President, Visionix, Inc.

  The latest version of the EATA-DMA driver and a Slackware bootdisk is
  available on: ftp.i-Connect.Net:/pub/Local/EATA

  Since patchlevel 1.1.81 the driver is included in the standard kernel

  The author can be reached under these addresses: neuffer@mail.uni- or mike@i-Connect.Net

  2.7.  BT-946C fully supported with kernel 1.3.x and newer

  There is a driver in the 1.3.x kernels (available as a patch for the
  1.2.13 kernel) written by someone associated with buslogic that fully
  supports the 946C and ALL of it's features including strict round
  robin, tagged queueing, multiple scatter/gather, multiple mailboxes,
  IRQ sharing, and yes, 15 devices on Fast/Wide.  It is no longer
  necessary to use any ISA emulation with the driver (no DMA channel, no
  ISA address), and the driver is /fast/ and /stable/ (it's out of BETA
  and into full release).

  The driver is available on (the newest version can
  always be got by doing "get BusLogic*").  It supports ALL BusLogic
  controllers with the exception of the FlashPoint LT, which uses a
  different interface.  The driver is included in the 1.3.x kernels as
  standard for BusLogic devices.

  2.8.  Future Domain TMC-3260 PCI SCSI

  Rik Faith ( informed me on Wed, 1 Feb 1995 about the
  Future Domain TMC-3260 PCI SCSI card being supported by the Future
  Domain 16x0 SCSI driver.  Newer information might be contained in the

  ·  Detection is not done well, and does not use standard PCI BIOS
     detection methods (someone who has a PCI board needs to send me
     patches to fix this problem).  So, you might have to fiddle with
     the detection routine in the kernel to get it detected.

  ·  The driver still does not support multiple outstanding commands, so
     your system will hang while your tape rewinds.

  ·  The driver does not support the enhanced pseudo-32bit transfer mode
     supported by recent Future Domain chips, so you will not get
     transfer rates as high as under DOS.

  ·  The driver only supports the SCSI-I protocol, so your really fast
     hard disks will not get used at the highest possible throughput.
     (Again, fixes for all these problems are solicited -- no one is
     working on them at this time.)

  2.9.  other thoughts on scsi

  James Soutter ( asked me to add the following
  information on Fast-Wide-SCSI-2:

       Fast Wide SCSI-2 is sometimes incorrectly called SCSI-3. It
       differs from the normal Fast SCSI-2 (like the Adapted
       1542B?) because it uses a 16 bit data bus rather than the
       more usual 8 bit bus. This improves the maximum transfer
       rate from 10 MB/s to 20 MB/s but requires the use of special
       Fast Wide SCSI-2 drives.

       The added performance of Fast Wide SCSI-2 will not
       necessarily improve the speed of your system.  Most hard
       disk drives have a maximum internal transfer rate of less
       than 10 MB/s and so one drive alone can not flood a FAST
       SCSI-2 bus.

       In Seagate's Oct 1993 product overview, only one Fast Wide
       SCSI-2 drive has an internal transfer rate of more than 10
       MB/s (the ST12450W).  Most of the drives have a maximum
       internal transfer rate of 6 MB/s or less, although the
       ST12450W is not the only exception to the rule.  In
       conclusion, Fast Wide SCSI is designed for the file server
       market and will not necessarily benefit a single user
       workstation style system.

       Rather than buying a PCI system with a SCSI interface on the
       motherboard, or rather than waiting for the NCR driver, you
       could purchase a separate PCI based SCSI card. According to
       Drew, the only PCI SCSI option that stands a chance of
       working is the Buslogic 946. It purports to be Adaptec 1540
       compatible, like the EISA/VESA/ISA boards in the series.

       Drew commented that other PCI based SCSI controllers are
       unlikely to be supported under Linux or the BSD's because
       the NCR based controllers are cheaper and more prevalent.

  I definitly recommend reading the SCSI HOWTO in regards to newer
  information about PCI SCSI drivers.

  Ernst Kloecker ( wrote: (edited)

  Talus Corporation has finished a NS/FIP driver for PCI
  boards with NCR SCSI. It will be shipping very soon, might
  even be free because a third party might pay for the work
  and donate the driver to NeXT.

  Not every PCI-Board has got the chip. The old ASUS do, and one of the
  J-Bond boards does, too. (Most of the boards nowadays (6/95) do expect
  you to buy the NCR53c810 seperately.) Some vendors provide an
  alternative as you can read in Drew's text...

  The NCR-Chip is clever enough to work with drives formatted by other
  controllers, and should be no problem.

  3.  ASUS-Boards

  3.1.  ASUS and the NMI (Parity) -- impact on Gravis-Ultrasound

  The newer trition PCI-Mainboards in 1995 did not seem to support
  parity-SIMMS anymore. Since I usualy took the cheaper nonparity-SIMMS
  anyway, I did not consider this a problem until I put the Gravis-
  Ultrasound into my machine. Under DOS the SBOS-Driver and Setup/Test
  utility does complain about "nmi procedure disabled on this p.c.". The
  manual says I'd better get a better mainboard in that case, not very

  The gravis-ultrasound did work nice in the ASUS-SP3 and ASUS-SP4,
  inspite of this, but the gravis-ultrasound-max I have here got gmod to
  kernel panic on both boards, and sometimes when playing au-files via
  /dev/audio did strange things, like playing the rest of an older,
  previously played sound after the new one. The sounddriver does
  recommend a buffer of 65536 with the GUS Max instead of the small one
  like the GUS - why I do not know. I do not have such a problem with
  the newer ASUS TP4 XE boards, though.  Both are equipped with 1M DRAM
  onboard. These problems are probably not related to the NMI-problem,
  but because of the sounddriver?

  I heard not only ASUS but most of the newer PCI-Mainboards are lacking
  in parity/NMI-support.

  Strange enough - the ASUS-TP4 (Trition Chipset) does work with the GUS
  Max - it does load the SBOS-Driver. I have to admit, I am confused.

  3.2.  Various types of ASUS Boards

  3.2.1.  ASUS SP3 with saturn chipset I (rev. 2) for 486,

  ·  2 x rs232 with 16550

  ·  NCR53c810 onboard,

  ·  slightly broken saturn-chipset I (rev. 2)

  3.2.2.  ASUS SP3G with saturn chipset II (rev. 4) for 486,

  like SP3, but less buggy saturn chipset

  3.2.3.  ASUS SP3-SiS chipset, for 486

  like AP4, but newer, SiS chipset, green functions and all the EIDE,
  rs232 with 2 16550 and centronics.  Only 2 SIMM Slots,  Does seem to
  work with AMD486DX4/120, but was not very reliably on NCR53c810 and
  various operating systems (Windows-NT, Windows95, OS2), after
  upgrading to a PentiumBoard ASUS SP4, all the problems vanished, so it
  must have been the board.  Still does seem to work nice for Linux,

  3.2.4.  ASUS AP4, for 486, with PCI/ISA/VesaLocalbus

  green functions, 1VL, 3 ISA, 4 PCI slots, only EIDE onboard, no fd-
  controller, no rs232/centronics. Very small size.

  does recognice AMD486DX2/66 as DX4/100 only. This can be corrected
  with soldering one pin (which?) to ground, but I would not recommend a
  board like this anyway.

  The one I tested was broken for OS2 and Linux, but people are said to
  use it for both.

  The VesaLocalbus-Slot is expected to be slower than the normal vesa-
  localbus boards because of the PCI2VL bridge, but without penalty to
  the PCI section.

  3.2.5.  ASUS SP4-SiS, for Pentium90, PCI/ISA

  like SP3-SiS, but for Pentium90/100.

  3.2.6.  ASUS TP4 with Triton chipset and EDO-Support

  has the Triton-Chipset for better performance and supports normal
  PS2-Simms as well as Fast-Page-Mode and EDO modules.

  3.2.7.  ASUS TP4XE with Triton chipset and additional SRAM/EDORAM sup­

  supports the new EDORAM and upcoming SRAM standards. At least SRAM is
  said to considerabely increase performance. Did for some reason not
  accept the 8M PS2-SIMMS working ok in ASUS SP4, after changing them
  against others, bigger looking ones, (16 chips instead of 8 if I
  remember right) it worked ok. Has been tested with P90 and P100.

  3.2.8.  ...and many others now.

  if you have new information on problems with them, please report.

  3.3.  Benchmarks on ASUS Mainboards

  I tried to compare the speed of CPUs in two ASUS Mainboards: for 486 I
  tested the SP3 SiS (the one with one vesa-local-bus slot) and for 586
  I tested the ASUS TP4/XE, each with 16M RAM, always the same unloaded
  system with another CPU, with whetstone and dhrystone.

  I must admit, I have not read the benchmarks-faq yet, and will
  probably edit the section a loot soon. If you have any comments,
  please mail me.

  I am especially confused about the amd486DX4/100 being faster on
  dhrystones than the DX4/120 version? I did not see that kind of
  inconsistency on comparing the P90 and P100.

  Perhaps this was at fault: when I plugged in the amdDX4-100, I had the
  board jumpered for DX2-66. While the BIOS did report it as an DX4-100,
  the board might have used the wrong clockspeeds... but since DX2-66
  uses 33Mhz * 2 and DX4 uses 33Mhz * 3, this would have been correct?

  The board running with DX4-120 is jumpered to 40Mhz * 3 = 120 Mhz.

  Another thing I wonder about is why the whetstones-result does yield
  so even numbers on some machines?

  3.3.1.  ASUS SP3 with amd486DX4-100

  ·  Dhrystone time for 500000 passes = 7 by 63559 dhrystones/second

  ·  Whetstone time for 1000 passes = 5 by 200.0000 Whetstones/second

  3.3.2.  ASUS SP3 with amd486DX4-120

  ·  Dhrystone time for 500000 passes = 8 by 56074 dhrystones/second

  ·  Whetstone time for 1000 passes =  4 by 250.0000 Whetstones/second

  3.3.3.  ASUS SP3 with intel486DX2-66

  ·  Dhrystone time for 500000 passes = 9 by 50761 dhrystones/second

  ·  Whetstone time for 1000 passes = 7 by 142.8571 Whetstones/second

  3.3.4.  ASUS TP4/XE with intel586-90

  ·  Dhrystone time for 500000 passes = 4 by 101010 dhrystones/second

  ·  Whetstone time for 1000 passes = 3 by 333.3333 Whetstones/second

  3.3.5.  ASUS TP4/XE with intel586-100

  ·  Dhrystone time for 500000 passes = 4 by 102040 dhrystones/second

  ·  Whetstone time for 1000 passes = 2  by 500.0000 Whetstones/second

  3.4.  Detailed information on the old ASUS PCI-I-SP3 with saturn
  chipset from

  ·  3 PCI, 4 ISA Slots (3x16, 1x8 Bit)

  ·  ZIF Socket for the CPU

  ·  room for 4 72pin-SIMMs (max. 128M)

  ·  Award BIOS in Flash-Eprom

  ·  Onboard: NCR-SCSI, 1par, 2ser (with FIFO), AT-Bus, Floppy

  The board does like most in that price class -- write-through cache,
  no write-back. This should not be significant, maybe 3% of

  The BIOS supports scsi-drives under DOS/Windows without additional
  drivers, but with the board come additional drivers which are said to
  give better performance, for DOS/Windows(ASPI), OS2, Windows-NT, SCO-
  Unix, Netware (3.11 and 4, if interpreted correctly)

  Gert Doering ( was saying the SCO-Unix-driver for
  the onboard-SCSI-Chip was not working properly. After two or three
  times doing: "time dd if=/dev/rhd20 of=/dev/null bs=100k count=500" it

  The trouble some people experienced with this board might be due to
  them using an outboard Adaptec-SCSI-Controller with "sync negotiation"
  turned on. (This predates the NCR driver release; hence the use of the
  Adaptec.) Please check that in the BIOS-Setup of the Adaptec-1542C if
  you use one and have problems with occasional hangups!

  There is a new version of the ASUS-Board which should have definitely
  less problems. It is called ASUS-PCI-I/SP3G, the G is important. It
  has the new Saturn-chipset rev. 4 and the bugs should be gone.  They
  use the Saturn-ZX-variant and the new SP3G has fully PCI conforming
  level-triggered (thus shareable), BIOS-configurable interrupts.  It
  has an on-board PS/2-mouseport, EPA-power-saving-modes and
  DX4-support, too. It performs excellently. If you can get the German
  computer magazine C't from July (?), you will find a test report where
  the ASUS-Board is the best around.

  Latest information about ASUS-SP3-G: You might experience crashes when
  using PCI-to-Memory-Posting. If you disable this, all works perfect. said he believed it to be a
  problem of the current Linux-kernel  rather than the hardware, because
  part of the system still works when crashing, looking like a deadlock
  in the swapper, and OS2/DOS/WINDOZE don't crash at all.

  Someone else with a very old ASUS-SP3 (saturn-I chipset) reported
  crashes with using XFree86, which went away when he installed the very
  latest betaversion which seems to work around a bit of the problems.

  3.5.  Pat Dowler (dowler@pt1B1106.FSH.UVic.CA) with ASUS SP3G

  ·  ASUS SP3G board (it is rev.4 == saturn II)

  ·  AMD DX4-100 CPU (need to set jumper 36 to 1&2 rather than 2&3,
     otherwise it's set the same as other 486DXn chips)

  ·  256K cache (comes with 15ns cache :-)

  ·  16meg RAM (2x8meg)

  ·  ET4000 ISA video card

  ·  quantum IDE hard drive

  ·  SMC Elitel16 combo ethernet card

  Unlike some other reports, I find the mouse pointer moves very smoothy
  under X (just like the ol' 386)  - it is jumpy under some, but not
  all, DOS games though...

  Performance is great!! I ran some large floating point tests and found
  the performance in 3x33 (100MHz) mode to be almost 1.5x that in 2x
  (66MHz) mode (large being 500x500 doubles - 4meg or so)... I was a
  little dubious about clock-tripling but I seem to be getting full
  benefit :-)

  The heavily configurable energy star stuff doesn't work with the
  current AMD DX4 chips - you need an SL chip

  I really need a SCSI disk and a PCI video card :-)

  (I had a phonecall by a person who had this problem with the buggy SMC
  FIFO chipset, after using X-window they hung.)

  4.  confusion about saturn chipsets

  Pat Duffy ( said:

  Saturn I:  these are revisions 1 and 2 of the Saturn chipsets.
  Saturn II:  This is also called rev. 4 of the Saturn chipsets.

  As far as I know, rev. 3 never actually shipped, and (from a few people who
  have it) the SP3G now has rev. 4 (or Saturn II) in it.

  Confused?  Well, the only real definitive answer is to get ahold of the board
  and run the debug script in the PCI chipset list on it.  As far as I know,
  though, the SP3G board is indeed shipping with rev. 4 (Saturn II).

  5.  Video-Cards

  Linux people have successfully used # 9 XGE Level 12, ELSA Winner
  1000, and S3-928 video cards. The XFree86(tm)-3.1.1 does support
  boards with the tseng et4000/w32 in accelerated mode, as well as S3
  Vision 864 and 964 chipsets including boards like the ELSA Winner
  1000Pro and 2000Pro, Number Nine GXE64 and GXE64Pro, Miro Crystal
  20SV). Support in the S3 Server for the Chrontel8391 clock chip has
  been added.

  Trio32 and Trio64 S3 Boards like the SPEA V7 Mirage P64 PCI and  MIRO
  Crystal 40SV, are also supported, the Mach32 and Mach64 are supported
  in accelerated mode, too.

  The SVGA Driver

  16bpp mode (65K colors instead of the usual 256) support for Mach32
  boards as well as 32bpp for some S3 boards and the P9000 boards has
  been added. reported:

  ·  Diamond Stealth W32 (et4000/W32) -- Text mode works, X11 suffered
     from "pixel dust", unbearable never got it to work and returned it.

  ·  # 9GXE L12 -- Works, virtual consoles corrupted when switched,
     fixed this with disabling the "fast dram mode" feature in his BIOS.
     Does not get a dot clock above 85, though.

  Genoa Phantom 8900PCI card seems to work well.  Genoa Phantom/W32 2MB
  does not work in an ASUS-Board.  Tseng 3000/W32i chipset seems to work
  well.  Spea-v7 mercury-lite works perfectly since XFree86(tm)-2.1.

  Spea V7 Mirage P64 PCI 2M with Trio64 works nice since

  ATI Graphics Ultra Pro for PCI with 2MB VRAM and an ATI68875C DAC run
  well as tells us: "It's humming right along
  at 1280x1024 w/256 colors @74Hz non-interlaced. Looks great."

  Paradise WD90C33 PCI did lock up on screensaver/X - this has been
  solved in the newer versions of the kernel.
  (John Edward Bauer)

  miroChrystal 8S/PCI (1MB) S3 - no problem.

  Stephen Tweedie reported his Cirrus Logics 5434 PCI card works well.
  It is a 64bit with 2M and runs perfectly with the SVGA driver in 8, 16
  and 32 bit per pixel.

  6.  Ethernet Cards

  Of course the ISA-ethernet-cards still work, but people are asking for
  PCI-based ones. The author of many (if not most) ethernet- drivers
  said the following some time ago (unfortunately I have not managed to
  contact him about new information):

       From: Donald Becker ( Subject:
       PCI ethernet cards supported?

       The LANCE code has been extended to handle the PCI version.
       I hope to get the PCI probe code (about a dozen extra lines
       in the LANCE driver) into the next kernel version.  I'm
       working on the 32 bit mode code.  I haven't yet started the
       21040 code.

       I'll write drivers for the PCnet32 mode and the DEC 21040.
       That will cover most of the PCI ethercard market.


  In the new testkernels of 1.1.50 and above, the AMD-singlechip
  ethernetadapters are supported. With a pentium, they ought to then see
  900K/second ftps +(assuming an NCR PCI scsi controller) at about 20%
  cpu load. (AMD Lance).

  Anything based on the AMD PCnet/PCI chip should work at the time
  being. In the US the Boca board costs under US$ 70

  Geoffry Coram reported in the news that he got his 3com 590 TPO to
  work. He had to get the alpha driver from  Other drivers would be
  there as well.  Note

  Donald Holmgren said he successfully attached his DEC DE435 (PCI) card
  to the local network on thin coax (BNC).  The DE435 driver checks the
  twisted pair connection first, then switches to the alternate port
  (jumper selectable as AUI or BNC) if the 10BaseT port fails.

  Jim Cusick uses the Boca BEN 1PI card on a thin coax network.  It
  works just fine.  You might want to check out: for details
  on the early failures of this card.  My second card, after sending one
  back for replacement, was marked "PN 4186".  The old one that did not
  work was "PN 4185".  Mandate this newer model when you order from you
  vendor.  At $ 70, the card is a good deal.

  Dave Platt recommends to stay off the Boca BEN1PI card at all costs.
  It would be unreliable due to design flaws, and Boca seems unable to
  really fix the problem. The 3Com 3c590 "Vortex" PCI card is available
  in a combo version (10BaseT, thin coax, and AUI).  The Linux driver
  for this card is not yet part of the release kernel, but is available
  from and can be
  patched into the later 1.2.x kernels (as well as 1.3.x) without much
  difficulty.  The Linux driver does not support the interface
  autodetect feature of this card - you must use the DOS utility to
  configure the card for the interface you wish to use (thin coax in
  this case).  Once you've done that, the Linux driver will use the
  correct interface.

  He has been using a 3c590 for several weeks, and it is working fine.

  Dave Kennedy said he got two of the above Boca boards and they work
  fine under light load, but under heavy work like ftping two 16M files
  into both directions, they failed. He sent the boards back to Boca for
  a hardwarefix. After they soldered a couple of things
  (diodes/resistors) onto the card and sent them back, the cards worked
  fine regardless of load. The two cards have been in 7/24 use in two
  P90 systems without problems for 6 months now.

  Craig does not recommend it since Boca seems not to follow the AMD
  specs but he has been running them for 2 weeks without problems. He
  tested his NFS performance and has been moving large files to and from
  server (16M, 8M).  He also tried to do all his workin localy using his
  data files mounted by NFS and has had no problems. Performance seems
  to be 100 percent better (wrt to NFS performance) over his NE2000 ISA
  board. (editors note: but so would probably have been the ISA SMC
  Elite Ultra?)

  6.1.  3com-3c590-tpo

  Someone on usenet mentioned ht used the 3Com-3C590-TPO (EtherLink III
  - PCI).  He had to get the "3c59x.c" driver and "vortex.patch" to make
  it work with his 1.2.8 Linux kernel.

  6.2.  DEC435 PCI NIC

  The DEC435 PCI NIC is said to work great with the drivers included in
  the Slackwaredistribution - I'd say they are in the standard-kernel?

  7.  Motherboards

  The people who answered were using the following boards:

  7.1.  ASUS

  ·  Ruediger.Funck@Physik.TU-Muenchen.DE - successful.

  · - half-successful, works, but...

  · (Ulrich Teichert), - successful.

  · - successful

  · - successful

  · - successful - but trouble with the serial port

  ·  archie@CS.Berkeley.EDU and his friend - successful after solving

  ·  Lars Heinemann ( successful

  ·  Michael Will ( - successful.

  7.2.  Micronics P54i-90 succesful successful successful

  7.3.  SA486P AIO-II successful

  7.4.  Sirius SPACE - successful

  7.5.  Gateway-2000 - no problems except the soundcard he tries to swap - successful, but...  robert
  logan ( - flawless.  James D. Levine
  ( - flawless.

  7.6.  Intel-Premiere - successful - successful - successful (Premier-II)

  7.7.  DELL Poweredge SP4100 - successful

  7.8. - successful when turning off plug and
  play DELL OptiPlex Gl+ 575

  7.9.  Comtrade Best Buy PCI / PCI48X MB Rev 1.0

  tldraben@Teleport.Com - "Works, I believe it has buggy Saturn chipset.
  I would also like to add: I strongly recommend not buying from
  Contrade.  Their service is horrible. "

  7.10.  IDeal PCI / PCI48X MB Rev 1.0

  tldraben@Teleport.Com - "Did not work with PCI48X motherboard"

  7.11.  CMD Tech. PCI IDE / CSA-6400C - "Works"

  7.12.  GA-486iS (Gigabyte) - success with problems.

  7.13.  GA-586-ID (Gigabyte) 90 Mhz Pentium PCI/EISA Board

  kkeyte@esoc.bitnet - succesful

  7.14.  ESCOM 486dx2/66 - which board?

  Works perfect except the ftape-streamer (archive)

  7.15.  J-Bond with i486dx2/66

  Drew Eckhardt (drew@kinglear.cs.Colorado.EDU) uses Diamond Stealth 64
  VRAM with 4M of memory (964 based). It works great, he usualy runs it
  at 1024x768 72hz in 32bpp; 16 and 8bpp also work. He needed to get the
  X311u2S3.tgz server from; people with 968 based
  Diamond boards will definately need to do this.

  7.16.  super micro 011895 03:50 SUPER P54CI-PCI rev 1.3 (Opti)

  Manuel de Vega Barreiro

  ·  board    super micro 011895 03:50 SUPER P54CI-PCI rev 1.3

  ·  Opti chipset: 82c557,82c556,82c558,82c621.

  ·  4 PCI, 4 ISA Slots (4x16 Bit)

  ·  ZIF Socket for CPU (120,100,90,75 mHz)

  ·  4 72 pin-SIMMs (max 128Mb)

  ·  cache 256,512,1024 Kb L2-cache

  ·  Ami WinBIOS in Flash-Eprom (101094-VIPER-P)

  ·  onboard: EIDE for 4 drives

  ·  Pentium with 90Mhz, 8M (now 16M) RAM and 256K L2-cache.

  ·  1 maxtor 540 Mb, 1 st3122A 1Gb

  ·  Number Nine 9GXE64pro with 2Mb

  ·  Sound blaster 16 + cdrom Matsushita

  ·  17" microscan 5ep ADI monitor

     I run  linux 1.1.57  (now 1.2.1) without problems.  dosemu0.53 work
     fine (com. software like kermit and xtalk) XFree86 3.1 at 1024x768

  8.  reports on success

  8.1.  GigaByte GA486-AM with AMD Am5x86-133-WB @ 160MHz (40MHz PCI)

  GigaByte GA486-AM

  ·  AMD Am5x86-133-WB @ 160MHz (40MHz PCI)

  ·  BIOS as of 11/07/95 (Rev.A)

  ·  256KB 2nd level cache (15ns)

  ·  48MB RAM (Mixed 60/70ns)

  Hercules Terminator 64/VIDEO (S3 765 or "Trio 64V+")

  Sound Blaster 16

  ·  Panasonic CR563 CD-ROM drive

  Silicon 4Ser/3Par I/O

  ·  Mouse

  ·  Terminal

  ·  Terminal

  ·  Modem (14k4)

  ·  HP Laserjet III

  Mitsumi CD-ROM controller

  ·  FX001D drive

  Longshine 1MBit Floppy controller

  ·  IOMega Tape Insider 250

  ·  3,5" Floppy

  ·  5,25" Floppy

  No Network card, because the 4 ISA slots are full, and I don't have a
  PCI card.  I (now) use kernel 2.0.22 with APM enabled, and the hard
  drives power down and up properly without panics.  The system is 24hrs
  up a day and still running. Kernel compilation takes between 5 and 7
  minutes, depending on options.

  8.2.  California Graphics - Sunray II Pro

  Guido Trentalancia ( reported the California
  Graphics - Sunray II Pro with Triton chipset to work well with
  Pentium100, Hd: Conner cfs420a, Conner cfs210a, crunching numbers at
  147492 dhrystones/second.

  8.3.  Micronics P54i-90 (

  Pentium with 90Mhz, 32M RAM and 512K L2-cache. Works extremely well (a
  kernel recompile takes 10 minutes :-).

  The board includes:

  ·  UART - two 16550A high speed UARTS

  ·  ECP - one enhanced parallel port

  ·  Onboard IDE controller

  ·  Onboard floppy controller

  Pros: Currently, I'm using it with an Adaptec 1542CF and a 1G Seagate
  drive, No problems. Graphics is ATI Graphics Pro Turbo (PCI). Very
  fast. The serial ports can keep up with a TeleBit T3000 modem (38400)
  without overruns.  Caching above 16M does occur. There are 3 banks of
  SIMM slots (2 SIMM's per bank), with each bank capable of 64M each (2
  32M 72-pin SIMM's). Each bank must be filled completely to be used
  (I'm only using bank 0 with 2 16Mx72-pin SIMM's). The CPU socket is a
  ZIF type socket. The BIOS is Phoenix, FLASH type.

  Drawbacks: RAM is expandable to 192M, but the L2 cache is maxed at
  512K. While the graphics are very fast, there is currently no XF86
  server for the Mach64 (well, actually there is, but it doesn't use any
  of the accelerator features; it's just an SVGA server). I don't know
  if the onboard IDE hard drive controller works; I'm prejudiced against
  a standard that won't allow my peripherals to operate across
  platforms, so I didn't buy an IDE disk; instead, I got a Seagate
  31200N and a NEC 3Xi.


  8.4.  Angelo Haritsis ( about SA486P AIO-II:

  The motherboard I eventually bought (in the UK) is one supporting 486
  SX/DX/DX2/DX4 chips. It is called SA486P AIO-II. Features include:

  ·  Intel Saturn v2 chipset

  ·  Phoenix BIOS (flash eprom option)

  ·  NCR scsi BIOS v 3.04.00

  ·  256K 15ns cache (max 512) write back and write through

  ·  4 72-pin SIMM slots in 2 banks

  ·  3 PCI slots, 4 ISA

  ·  On-board NCR 53c810 scsi controller

  ·  On-board IDE / floppy / 2 x 16550A uarts / enhanced parallel

  I bought it from a company (UK) called ICS, (note I have no
  connections whatsoever with the company, just a happy customer). I use
  a 486/DX2-66 CPU.

  Before I had a VLB 486 m/board with a buslogic BT-445S controller that
  I was borrowing. I have 2 scsi devices: 1 barracuda 2.1GB ST12550N
  disk and a Wangtek 5525ES tape drive.  I was expecting a lot of
  adventures by switching to the new motherboard, esp after hearing all
  these non-success stories on the net. To my surprise everything worked
  flawlessly on the 1st boot! (1.1.50). And it has been doing so for
  about a month now. I did not even have to repartition the disk:
  apparently the disk geometry bios translation of the 2 controllers is
  the same.  Linux has had no problems at all. SCSI is visibly much
  faster as well (sorry, I have no actual performance measurements).

  The only problems (related to Drew's linux ncr53c7,810 scsi driver -
  thanks for the good work Drew!) are:

  ·  no synchronous transfers are yet supported => performance hit

  ·  disconnect/reconnect is disabled => disk scsi ops "hold" during
     certain slow scsi device opeartions (eg tape rewind)

  ·  tagged queuing is not there (?) => performance hit

  If you get Windows complainingg about 32-bit disk driver problems,
  just disable 32-bit disk access via Control Panel. This should not
  hurt performance. (What I did is remove the WDCTRL driver from my

  All else is fine. I tried the serial ports with some dos/windows s/w
  and worked ok. The IDE/floppy work ok as well. I have not tried the
  parallel yet. The motherboard is quite fast and so far I am very
  pleased with the upgrade. I have not yet tried a PCI graphics board. I
  will later on. I am using an old ISA S3 which is fine at the moment.

  PS: the NCR drivers in the 2.0.x kernels should have no problems of
  that kind anymore. please consult the SCSI-HOWTO for further and
  hopefully more uptodate information.

  8.5. about his Micronics M5Pi

  Micronics M5Pi motherboard with 60 MHz Pentium, PCI bus having the
  following components:

  16Mb RAM/512k cache
  onboard IDE, parallel, 16550A UARTS
  2 X 340MB Maxtor IDE Hard Drives
  Soundblaster 16 SCSI-II
  Toshiba 3401B SCSI CD-ROM
  Archive Viper 525MB SCSI Tape Drive
  Viewsonic 17 monitor
  Cardex Challenger PCI video card (ET4000/W32P)
  A4-Tech Serial Mouse

  Everything works great, Slackware installation was very easy, I can
  run Quicken 7 for DOS under DOSEMU. I run X at 1152x900 resolution at
  8.6.  Simon Karpen ( with Micronics

  I have had no problems with the above board, the on-board PCI IDE
  (hopefully soon will also have SCSI), and an ATI Mach32 (GUP) with 2MB
  of VRAM.

  8.7.  Goerg von Below ( about DELL Poweredge

  - Intel 486DX4/100
  - 16 MB RAM
  - DELL SCSI array (DSA) with Firmware A07, DSA-Manager 1.7
  - 2 GB internal SCSI streamer
  - 3-Com C579 EISA Ethernet card
  - ATI 6800AX PCI VGA subsystem, 1024 MB RAM

  CAVE! DELL SCSI Array controller (DSA) runs only with firmware Rev. A07 !
  A06 is buggy, impossible to reboot !
  To get it: ftp , file is /dellbbs/dsa/

  Apart from this firmware-problem there where no problems for the last
  2 months, running with linux 1.1.42 as primary nameserver, newsserver
  and www-server on internet.

  8.8. about Gateway2000 P-66

  Gateway2000's P5-66 system with Intel's PCI motherboard, with 5 ISA
  slots and 3 PCI slots.  The only PCI card I am using is the # 9 GXe
  level 12 PCI card (2 MB VRAM and 1 MB DRAM). This card was bought from
  Dell. Under Linux I am using the graphics in the 80x25 mode only (I am
  waiting for some XFree86 refinements before using it in 1280x1024
  resolution), but under DOS/Windows I have used the card in
  1280x1024x256 mode without problems. Etherlink 3C509 Ethernet card,
  Mitsumi bus-interface card, Adaptec 1542C SCSI interface card and
  additional serial/parallel ports card (which makes the total of serial
  ports 3).

  I have total of 32 MB RAM (recognized and used by both Linux and DOS).
  There is also a bus mouse (Microsoft in the PS2 mode).

  No problems so far.

  8.9.  James D. Levine ( with Gateway2000

  Gateway 2000 P5-60 with an Intel Mercury motherboard, AMI-Flash-BIOS,
  (1.00.03.AF1, (c)'92) 16M RAM, on-board IDE controller and an ATI AX0
  (Mach32 Ultra XLR) PCI display adapter. He had absolutely no problems
  with the hardware so far but has not tried anything fancy, such as
  accelerated IDE drivers or SCSI support.

  8.10. with SPACE

  SPACE-board, 8MB RAM, S3 805 1MB DRAM PCI 260MB Seagate IDE-hard disk
  because of lack of NCR53c810-Driver, 0.99pl15d, does seem to work

  8.11. with INTEL

  17 machines running a 60Mhz-i586 on Intel-Premier-PCI-Board

  8.12.  Jermoe Meyers ( with Intel Premiere

  Motherboard - Intel Premiere Plato-babyAT 90mhz with Buslogic bt946c
  w/4.86 mcode w/4.22 autoSCSI firmware, (note, mine came with 4.80
  mcode and 4.17 autoSCSI firmware. (interrupt pins A,B,C conform to
  respective PCI slots!) ATI Xpression (Mach64) - using driver from
  sunsite, (running AcerView 56L monitor).

  The motherboard has 4 IDE drives, Linux (Slackware 2.0) sees the first
  two and everything on the Buslogic as it emulates an adaptec 1542.
  Uh, yes, Dos sees them all.  Buslogic is VERY accomodating in regards
  to shipping upgraded chips (you will have to know how to change PLCC
  (plastic leaded chip carrier) chips, 3 of them.  Though, don't let
  that scare you :-) it's not that tough.  Get a low end PLCC removal
  tool, and your in business.  You also might want to "flash upgrade
  your system bios from Intel's IPAN BBS, a trivial process.  Whats even
  more interesting is I also have a Sound Blaster SCSI-2 running a scsi
  CDROM drive off it's adaptech 1522 onboard controller.  So thats 4 IDE
  drives (2 under Linux) and 2 SCSI-2 controllers.

  I hope this helps others who are struggling with PCI technology use
  Linux!  Jerry (

  8.13.  Timothy Demarest ( Intel Plato Premiere II

  My system is configured as follows:  16Mb 60ns RAM, 3Com Etherlink-III
  53C809 ethernet card (using 10base2), ATI Mach 64 2Mb VRAM, Toshiba 2x
  SCSI CDROM, NCR 53c810 PCI SCSI, Syquest 3270 270Mb Cartridge Drive,
  Viewsonic 17 monitor, Pentium-90 (FDIV Bug Free).  Running Slackware
  2.1.0, Kernel 1.2.0, with other misc patches/upgrades.

  Everything is functioning flawlessly.  I dont recommend the Syquest
  drives.  I have used the 3105 and the 3270 and both a very, very
  fragile.  Also, the cartridges are easily damaged and I have had
  frequent problems with them.  I am in the process of looking for
  alternative removable storage (MO, Zip, Minidisc, etc).

  Some information you might need:

  8.13.1.  Flash Bios upgrades

  Flash Bios updates can be ftp'd from The current version is
  1.00.12.AX1.  The BIOS upgrades *must* be done in order.  1.00.03.AZ1
  to 1.00.06.AX1 to 1.00.08.AX1 to 1.00.10.AX1 to 1.00.12.AX1.  The
  Flash BIOS updates can also be downloaded from the Intel BBS.  I do
  not have that number right now.

  8.13.2.  NCR 53c810 BIOSless PCI SCSI

  If you are using an NCR 53c810 BIOSless PCI SCSI card in the Plato,
  you may have trouble getting the card to be recognized.  I had to
  change one of the jumpers on the NCR card:  the jumper that controls
  whether there is 1 or 2 NCR SCSI cards in your system must be set to
  "2".  I dont know why, but this is how I got it to work.  The other
  jumper controls the INT setting (A,B,C,D).  I left mine at A (the

  8.13.3.  apart from that - plug and play!

  There are no settings in the motherboard BIOS for setting the NCR
  53c810.  Dont worry - once the card is jumpered correctly, it will be
  recognized!  So much for PCI Plug-n-Play!

  8.14. with ASUS

  ASUS-PCI-Board (SP3) having:

  ·  -- Asus PCI-Board with AMD 486/dx2-66 and 16M RAM

  ·  -- Fujitsu 2196ESA 1G SCSI-II

  ·  -- Future Domain 850MEX Controller (cheap-SCSI-Controller, almost a
     clone to Seagate's ST01... want's to use ncr53c810 as soon as the
     driver comes out

  ·  -- ATI Graphics Ultra (the older one with Mach-8 Chip, ISA-Bus)

  ·  -- Slackware 1.1.1

  He just exchanged the boards, plugged his cards in, connected the
  cables, and it worked perfect. He does not use any PCI-Cards yet,

  8.15. with ASUS

  ASUS-PCI-Board with 486DX66/2, miro-crystal 8s PCI driven by the
  S3-drivers of XFree86-2.0, using the onboard SCSI-Chip. No problems
  with compatibility at all.

  8.16.  Lars Heinemann ( with ASUS

  ASUS PCI/I-486SP3 Motherboard w/ 486DX2/66 and 16M RAM (2x8),
  miroChrystal 8S/PCI (1MB) S3, Soundblaster PRO, Adaptec 1542b (3.20
  ROM) SCSI host adapter with two hard disks (Fujitsu M2694ESA u.
  Quantum LPS52) and a QIC-150 Streamer attached.  No problems at all!

  8.17.  Ruediger.Funck@Physik.TU-Muenchen.DE with ASUS

  ASUS PCI/I-486SP3 / i486DX2-66 / 8 MB PS/2 70 ns BIOS: Award v 4.50
  CPU TO DRAM write buffer: enabled CPU TO PCI write buffer: enabled PCI
  TO DRAM write buffer: disabled, unchangeable CPU TO PCI burst write:
  enabled Miro Crystal 8s PCI - S3 P86C805 - 1MB DRAM

  Quantum LPS 540S SCSI-Harddisk on NCR53c810-controller.

  8.18.  robert logan ( with GW/2000)

  Gateway 2000 4DX2-66P 16 Megs RAM, PCI ATI AX0 2MB DRAM (ATI GUP).  WD
  2540 Hard Disk (528 Megs) CrystalScan 1776LE 17inch. (Runs up to
  1280x1024) Slackware 1.1.2 (0.99pl15f)

  It is giving no problems. He uses SLIP for networking and an Orchid-
  Soundwave-32 for niceties, awaiting the NCR-Driver.  The only problem
  he has is that the IDE-Drive could be much faster on the PCI-IDE. It
  is one of the new Western Digital fast drives and in DOS/WfW it
  absolutely screams - on Linux it is just as slow as a good IDE-Drive.

  8.19.  archie@CS.Berkeley.EDU and his friend use ASUS

  Archie and his friend have rather similar configurations:

  ·  ASUS PCI-SP3 board (4 ISA, 3 PCI)

  ·  Intel 486DX2/66

  ·  Genoa Phantom 8900PCI card (friend: Tseng 3000/W32i chipset)

  ·  Maxtor 345 MB IDE hard drive

  ·  Supra 14.4 internal modem

  ·  ViewSonic 6e monitor (Archie)

  ·  NEC Multisync 4fge (friend)

  ·  Slackware 1.2.0

  The onboard-SCSI is disabled. First there were problems with the IDE-
  drive: ``on the board there's a jumper which selects whether IRQ14
  comes from the ISA bus or the PCI bus. The manual has an example where
  they show connecting it to PCI INT-A. Well, we did that just like the
  example... but then later our IDE drive would not work (the IDE
  controller is on board). Had to take it back. The guys at NCA were
  puzzled, then traced it back to this jumper. I guess the IDE
  controller uses IRQ14 or something? That's not documented anywhere in
  the manual. Other than that, seems to be kicking ass nicely now.
  Running X, modeming, etc. (for the Supra you have to explicitly tell
  the kernel that the COM port has a 16550A using setserial (in
  Slackware /etc/rc.d/rc.serial))''.

  8.20.  Michael Will with ASUS-SP3 486 (the old one)

  used the following:

  ·  ASUS PCI-SP3-Board with 486dx2/66 and 16M RAM

  ·  NCR53c810-SCSI-II chip driving a 1GB-Seagate-SCSI-II disk and a

  ·  ATI-GUP PCI Mach32 Graphics card with 2M VRAM running perfectly
     with XFree86(tm)-3.1 8bpp and 16bpp

  ·  Linux kernel 1.1.69

  It runs perfectly and I am content with the speed, the ATI-GUP-PCI
  (Mach32) does not give as good benchmarks as expected, though. Since I
  got the money by now, I got me an ASUS-SP4 with P90 which gives me
  better throughput on Mach32-PCI...  If I had even more money I'd get
  me another 16M of RAM and a Mach64-PCI with 4M RAM, though... I still
  keep on dreaming :-)

  8.21.  Mike Frisch ( Giga-Byte 486IM

  ·  Motherboard: Giga-Byte 486IM

  ·  Configuration: 4 ISA slots (2 double as VLB) and 4 PCI slots

  ·  CPU: Intel 486DX/33

  ·  BIOS: Award 4.50G

  ·  PCI EIDE Disk Controller: Giga-Byte GA-107 (CMD 640x PCI Multi-I/O)

  ·  PCI Video card: ATI Graphics eXpression PCI 2MB DRAM

  ·  Linux Kernel: 1.2.9

  ·  Linux Dist'n: Highly modified Slackware 2.2.0

  I have been running this board 24 hours a day for the past 5-6 months.
  It has worked flawlessly for me under DOS/Windows, OS/2 Warp, and
  Linux (with Linux being run usually 24 hours a day).

  8.22.  Karl Keyte (kkeyte@esoc.bitnet) Gigabyte GA586 Pentium

  ·  PCI/EISA Board Gigabyte GA586-ID 90MHz Pentium (dual processor, one

  ·  32M RAM

  ·  SCSI - no scsi-NCR-chip on-board, using Adaptec 1542C,


  ·  Adaptec 1742 EISA SCSI controller

  ·  Soundblaster 16

  ·  usual I/O

  Everything under DOS AND Linux works perfectly.  No problem
  whatsoever.  A VERY fast machine!  BYTE Unix benchmarks place it about
  the same as a Sun SuperSPARC-20 running Solaris 2.3.  The PC is faster
  for integer arithmetic and process stuff (including context
  switching).  The SPARC is faster for floating point and one of the
  disk benchmarks.

  8.23. with G/W 2000

  He uses a Gateway 2000 with no problems, except the soundcard (which
  one?). He is trading it in for a genuine soundblaster in hopes that
  will help.

  8.24.  Joerg Wedeck ( / ESCOM

  originaly buyed a 486 DX2/66 from ESCOM (which board?) with onboard
  IDE and without (!) onboard NCR-SCSI-chip. ISA-adaptec 1542cf scsi-
  controller instead spea v7 mercury lite (s3, PCI, 1MB), ISA-
  Soundblaster-16, mitsumi-cdrom (the slower one).  Everything except
  the archive-streamer works with no problems.  The spea-v7 works
  perfectly since XFree86-2.1

  He abandoned the Intel-board in favour of an ASUS-SP3-g and has some
  problems with PCI-to-Memory burstmode which is crashing only on Linux,
  "looking like a deadlock in the swapper". If you have any information
  on this, please eMail the maintainer of the PCI-HOWTO.

  After turning off the PCI-to-Memory posting feature it just works

  Rather than sending him mail please read his http-homepage at
  " jw" where he keeps
  information about his PCI-system, too.

  8.25.  Ulrich Teichert / ASUS

  ASUS-PCI board with AMD486dx40 (but actually running at 33Mhz?!)  His
  ISA-ET3000 Optima 1024A ISA works nice. No problems with Quantum540S
  SCSI Harddisk attached to the onboard NCR53c810.

  9.  Reports of problems

  9.1.  Compaq PCI systems, especially Presarios

  Patrick Yaner ( reported a Compaq-speciality to
  me. It seems they are mapping the PCI BIOS data area to an obscure
  area of memory, one that Linux (or OS2) cannot access. It can usually
  find it, but it can't get in, and gives a message on startup
  (something like "pcibios_init: entry in high memory area, unable to
  access").  Although this is alright with the display (which is on the
  PCI bus) and the IDE controller (also PCI), it means any other PCI
  devices -- such as an Ethernet card -- cannot be detected by Linux.

  Compaq offers a driver for DOS at

  but using this with linux would mean using the program that boots
  linux from DOS, instead of LILO.  Note that Compaq occasionally
  updates the software in this archive, so the file (also available as
  allfiles.txt) might be handy in checking to see that they haven't

  Oddly, this information can also be found in the SCSI HOWTO, although
  the Pressarios come with IDE built in.

  9.2.  VLSI Wildcat PCI chipset like in Zeos P120 box

  Paul Bame ( reported:

  The Wildcat PCI chipset works fine in late 1.3 and all 2.0 kernels.

  9.3. G/W 2000

  Gateway 2000 G/W 2000 4DX2/66 PCI ATI-Graphics-Ultra-Pro IDE of
  indeterminate make

  It works well - only the IDE-Card runs in ISA-compatibility-mode, and
  works a lot faster when switched into PCI-Mode by a DOS-program...
  thus it's not that fast in Linux, and a patch would be nice.

  9.4. (Frank Hofmann) / ASUS

  He uses the ASUS-board with 16MB-RAM, ISA-based S3/928, and the
  onboard-IDE-controller with a Seagate ST4550A harddisk. He's had no
  trouble with the newer Linux-kernels.

  His problem:

       using X, my mouse is not responding the way I was used to before. It's
       sometimes behind movement and makes jumps if moved quickly. I think
       this was discussed In a Linux newsgroup before (I don't know which
       one) and is due to the use of 16550 serial chips for the onboard
       serial interfaces. After two weeks, I got used to it :-)

  Reducing the threshold of the 16550 should help. There should be a
  patch to setserial available somewhere, but I do not know where.

  9.5. (Axel Mahler) / ASUS

  ASUS PCI/I-486SP3 Motherboard (Award BIOS 4.50), 16 MB RAM the on-
  Board NCR Chip is disabled, he had the Genoa Phantom/W32 2MB for PCI
  and a Adaptec AHA-1542CF (BIOS v2.01) connected to:

  ·  an IBM 1.05 GB Harddisk

  ·  a Toshiba CD-ROM (XM4101-B)

  ·  a HP DAT-Streamer (2GB)

  when creating the filesystems, 'mke2fs' (0.4, v. 1.11.93) hung and
  installation was impossible. After replacing the Genoa Phantom/W32 2MB
  PCI with an ELSA Winner 1000 2MB PCI it worked perfectly.  He tested
  it with an old Eizo VGA-ISA and it worked as well, so the problem was
  in the Genoa-PCI-card.

  9.6.  Frank Strauss ( / ASUS

  ASUS SP3 Board i486DX2/66 NCR53c810 disabled Adaptec 1542B in ISA Slot
  with 2 hard drives (200MB Maxtor, 420MB Fijutsu), SyQuest 88MB and
  Tandberg Streamer ELSA Winner 1000 PCI, 1MB-VRAM Soundblaster Pro in
  ISA Slot at IRQ 5 Onboard IDE disabled Onboard serial, parallel, FD

  After a reset, the machine sometimes 'hangs' (soft and hard-reset the
  same) - this is probably not related to the Adaptec and the Soundcard,
  because even without these the system sometimes fails to come up. But
  if it runs, (and the ELSA-WINNER-1000-PCI-message appears) it runs ok.

  The two serial ports are detected as 16550 as they should, but at some
  mailbox-sessions there was heavy data-loss at V42bis... The problem
  seems to be in the hardware...

  CPU>-PCI-Burst seems to work well with DOS/MS-Windows

  CPU->PCI-Burst does not work properly with linux0.99p15, Messing up
  when switching the virtual-consoles, crashing completely when calling
  big apps like ghostview, or xdvi, leaving the SCSI-LED on (!).

  (I suspect these apps would be using a lot of CPU->PCI-burst because
  of the big heap of data to transmit to the PCI-Winner-1000)

  After disabling CPU->PCI-Burst, it works well, the Winner-1000 at
  1152x846 (not much font cache with 1MB) does 93k xstones. OpaqueMove
  with twm is more than just endureable :-)

  He has got a SATURN.EXE which he loads under DOS before starting
  Linux, helping to turn on burst without hangs...

  Someone stated that these problems might go away when turning off
  "sync negotiation" on the Adaptec - I do not know if this is possible
  with the adaptec1542B too? But I guess so.

  With CPU->PCI-Burst it yielded 95k xstones, so he considers it as not
  too grave to do without. His only problem is that he would like to run
  his Winner-1000 at 1152x900 which fails because it seems to take any
  x-resolution higher than 1024pixels as a 1280pixel-resolution, thus
  wasting a lot end resulting in a y-resolution of 816pixels... but this
  is probably no PCI-related problem. It should have gone away with

  9.7. / ASUS

  ·  BOARD  ASUS PCI/I-486 SP3      RAM: 16MB (4x4M-SIMM)

  ·  CPU    486DX33 CPU

  ·  BIOS   Ver. 4.50 (12/30/93)

  ·  Floppy         Two floppy drives (1.2 and 1.44), using ASUS on-
     board floppy controller

  ·  SCSI tried both WD7000 SCSI controller and Adaptec 1542CF and

  ·  Two SCSI 320M hard drives

  ·  SCSI NEC84 CDROM drive

  ·  SCSI QIC150 Archive tape drive

  ·  Video - Tseng ET4000 ISA graphics card

  ·  Sound PAS16 sound card

  ·  Printer attached to on-board ASUS parallel port

  He has nothing in the PCI-Slots yet, but wants to buy a PCI-Video-
  Card, currently uses WD7000 SCSI controller but will switch to the
  NCR-Chip onboard as soon as the driver is out.

  Everything works perfectly - the first serial port which has a 14.4K-
  Modem attached does hang occasionally when reconnecting with the modem
  after having used it previously.  He says that would not be unique to
  ASUS but rather a bug in the SMC-LSI device with its 16550UART. The
  logitech-serial-mouse on the second port works fine. Setting down the
  threshold of the 16550 for the mouseport would definitely help, one
  does seem to need a special patched setserial for that? I have not got
  the information yet, please contact me if you know more!

  9.8. / GigaByte

  ·  Board - GA-486iS from Gigabyte w/ 256Kb 2L-Cache, i486-DX2

  ·  Bios - AMI, 93/8

  ·  SCSI - no scsi-NCR-chip on-board, using Adaptec 1542C,

  ·  Video - ELSA Winner 1000

  ·  Linux 0.99pl14 + SCSI-Clustering-Patches / Slackware 1.1.1

  All seems to go well, but he has not tried neither networking,
  printing or a streamer yet. Before applying the clustering- patches he
  had some problems with hangs triggered by "find", but this no longer
  is the case - perhaps it was an older kernel-bug.

  The ELSA-Winner-1000 sometimes hangs, with very strange patterns on
  the screen resolved only by rebooting... The dealer has told him it
  was a bug in the ELSA-Card, but the manufacturer claims it had solved
  the problem. The bug is not reproducible so he does not plan to take
  any action at the moment.

  All in all the machine seems to work very well under heavy text
  processing (emacs, LaTeX, xfig, ghostview) usage.  Interaction is
  surprisingly responsive, little difference between it and the 3-4X as
  expensive Sun he works on...

  CPU->PCI-Burst is still disabled because the bios does not support the
  PCI-things well?

  A problem with his new modem (v32 terbo) arose: it looses characters.
  Especially when using SLIP it complains a lot about RX and TX errors.
  As soon as he runs X it gets unusable. He said he activated FIFO and
  RTS/CTS with stty, but to no avail...

  9.9.  Steve Durst ( with UMC 8500 mainboard

  Running Linux 1.2.12 on the UMC8500-100Mhz motherboard with the
  dreaded CMD PCIO640B (E)IDE controller, when booting the screen
  wiggles a few seconds, as if the Diamond Stealth64-DRAM (S3 864) has
  to warm up first, but he can live with that.

  9.10.  Tom Drabenstott (tldraben@Teleport.Com) with Comtrade / PCI48IX

  PCI48IX Motherboard Rev. 1.0. Made by ??? documentation copyrighted by
  "exrc". The BIOS says not very much about PCI.

  His E-315E Super IDE UMC (863+865) ISA-Controller-card does have
  problems. (It is a multifunction controller-card). It seems to work
  well under DOS/OS2 but not under Linux.

  10.  General tips for PCI-Motherboard + Linux NCR PCI SCSI

  This was compiled by Angelo Haritsis ( from various
  people's postings:

  10.1.  DON'Ts:

  Do *NOT* go for combination VLB/PCI motherboards. They usually have a
  lot of problems. Get a plain PCI version (with ISA slots as well of
  course).  A lot of bad things have been heard about OPTI chipset PCI
  motherboards.  Someone hints: "Avoid the OPTi (82C596/82C597/82C822)
  chipset based motherboards like the TMC PCI54PV".

  (I know of at least one person having no problems with his TMC PCI54PV
  motherboard. He just had to put the NCR53c810 addonboard into slot-A
  which is the only slot capable of busmastering as it seems.)

  Rumours say that Intel chipset PCI motherboards will have problems
  with more than one bus-mastering PCI board. I have not tried this one
  yet on mine and have nothing to suggest. I also heard that the Saturn
  II chipset is problematic, but this is the one I use and it is
  perfectly ok! Advice: Try to negotiate a 1-2 week money back agreement
  with your supplier, in case the motherboard you get has problems with
  the use you plan for it.

  10.2.  SIMM slots

  Go for 72-pin only SIMMs for speed: Some (all?) of the mainboards
  which take 30 pin SIMMs use a 32 bit main memory interface, and will
  be significantly slower than the Intel based boards which all use a 64
  bit or permantly interleaved memory interface.  You might want to keep
  that in mind.

  10.3.  Praised PCI Pentium motherboard

  The P90 Intel motherboard with the Intel Premiere II chipset (aka
  Plato). Get the latest BIOS which has concatenated NCR scsi BIOS
  3.04.00. Otherwise DOS won't see your scsi disk(s) if you use a BIOS-
  less 53c810 based controller.  NCR SCSI BIOS exists in the AMI BIOS of
  the plato after version 1.00.08 (or maybe verion 1.00.06). This BIOS
  is FLASH upgradeable so you should be able to get the upgrade on a
  floppy from your supplier. The current version is 1.00.10 and has all
  early problems fixed.

  (Bios files should be available at,
  but I did not check that myself. the Autor.)

  10.4.  irq-lines

  The value in the interrupt line PCI configuration register is usually
  set manually (for compatability with legacy ISA boards) in the
  extended CMOS setup screens on a per-slot or per-device basis.  Older
  PCI mainboards also force you to set jumpers for each PCI slot/device
  which select how PCI INTA and perhaps INTB, INTC, and INTD are mapped
  to an 8259 IRQ line, Obviously, if these jumpers exist on your board,
  they must match the settings in the extended CMOS setup.  Also note
  that some boards (notably Viglens) have silkscreens and instruction
  manuals which disagree with the wiring, and some experimentation may
  be in order.

  10.5.  Info about the different NCR 8xx family scsi chips:

  All NCR 8XX Chips are dircet connect PCI bus mastering devices, that
  have no preformance difference wether on motherboard or add in option
  card.  All devices comply with PCI 2.0 Specification, and can burst 32
  bit data at the full 33 MHz (133Mbytes/Sec)

  10.5.1.  53C810

  53C810 = 8 bit Fast SCSI-2 (10 MB/Sec) Single ended only Requires
  Integrated Mother board BIOS 100 pin Quad Flat Pack (PQFP) Worlds
  first PCI SCSI Chip, Volumes make it the most inexpensive.

  10.5.2.  53C815

  53C815 = 8 bit Fast SCSI-2 (10 MB/Sec) Single Ended only Support ROM
  BIOS interface, which makes it ideal for add-in card Designs. 128 Pin

  10.5.3.  53C825

  53C825 = 8 bit Fast SCSI-2, Single ended or Differential 16 bit Fast
  SCSI-2 (20 MB/Sec), Single ended or Differetial Also has support for
  external Rom, making it a good candidate for add in cards. 160 pin QFP
  Not supported by linux yet. (See section below on news about the 825).
  Must have devices with wide or differential scsi to use these

  10.6.  future of 53c8xx

  There are 4 new devices planned for announcement late this year and
  into early next year.  Footprint compitible with 810 and 825 with some
  new features.

  All the Chips require a BIOS in DOS/Intel applications.  The 810 is
  the only chip that needs it resident on the motherboard. Latest NCR
  SCSI BIOS version: 3.04.00 The bios supports disks >1GB, indeed up to
  8G under MS-LOSS.

  10.7.  Performance of the 53c810

  C't magazine's DOS benchmarks showed that it was significantly faster
  than the Buslogic BT-946, one user noted a 10-15% performance increase
  versus an Adaptec 2940, and with a very fast disk it may be 2.5X as
  fast as an Adaptec 1540.

  10.8.  News about NCR53c825 support

  works. period.

  10.9.  Frederic POTTER ( about Pen­

  On some Intel Plato board,  the NCR bios doesn't recognize the board,
  because it needs to see the board as a "secondary SCSI controller",
  and because on most SCSI board the jumper to select between
  primary/secondary has been ironed to primary (to spare 1 cent,


  near the NCR chip, they are 3 via ( kind of holes ) with a strap like
                  O--O  O

          this mean primary is selected as default setting. For the Plato Intel
          Mainboard, it should be like that

                  O  O--O

          The best solution is to get rid of the strap and to put a 2 position
          jumper instead.

  10.10.  PCIprobe in the latest Linux Kernels by Frederic Potter

  Frederic Potter has added a PCI-Probe into the latest kernels. If you
  do a "cat /proc/pci" it should list all your cards. If you own cards
  which are not properly recogniced, please contact him via mail as

  See arch/i386/kernel/bios32.c and include/linux/pci.h in the kernel
  source for more information on PCI-Probe-Stuff.

  10.11.  Other PCI Devices

  What other PCI-cards are supported? Apart from various graphicscards,
  I would like to know about other cards like ethernet, framegrabber, or
  the TSET boards Cyclades is about to beta-test at the moment:

  10.11.1.  Cyclades: a 16-port PCI RISC-based multiport card.

  The product is called Cyclom-Ye, and has the following

  ·  PCI host card based on the PLX chip-set. This host card supports 8
     to 32 serial ports, utilizing 8 or 16-port external boxes.

  ·  SCSI II cable.

  ·  8 or 16-port external boxes with RJ45 or DB25 connectors (your
     choice).  You can start with 8 ports and expand to 32, by just
     adding more boxes. Each external box contains 2 or 4 CD-1400 RISC
     Serial controllers (each CD-1400 controls 4 serial ports).

  ·  Up to 4 Host cards can be installed in the PC system, allowing a
     maximum of 128 serial ports per system.

  The product is being in the beta-test phase at July the 26th, 1995,
  and should be available by Octobre or something. eMail them at

  11.  Conclusion

  If you have some moneny to put into your machine, you'd be well off
  with a Pentium90, ASUS-SP4, which is what I use at the moment. If you
  can afford 32M RAM that would be much better than 16M RAM.

  Real soon now the upcoming standard will be the Triton Chipset with
  support for special SIMMS called EDODRAM, and SRAM. Both will be more
  expensive than PS2-RAM, and at the time of writing (28-June-1995) SRAM
  is not available. While EDO-DRAM is more expensive, this is not
  because of the production costs, they are said to be the same.

  For a highperformance system I would still choose an ASUS-TP4/XE with
  EDO-DRAM, but if you do not need to use it at the moment, I d rather
  wait some more.

  For Graphic-boards I'd say the best cheap board fitting perfectly on a
  good Multisync-15 like the Samsung SyncMaster 15Gli, is the SPEA V7
  Mirage P64 with Trio64 Chipset and 2M DRAM. For more sophisticated
  Display like the Iiyama-IDEK 8617A-T I think the PCI Mach64 ATI-GUP-
  Turbo (not the cheaper GUP-Turbo-Windows) would be a good choice, with
  4M RAM you can have truecolor in higher resolutions. It is well
  supported in the XFree86(tm)-3.1.1, and there are commercial X-Servers
  available of which I'd recommend Accelerated/X by Roell, which
  supports the Mach64 very well and fast.

  For SCSI I'd take the DPT rather than the (much cheaper and very fast)
  NCR53c810 in case you plan to use SCSI-Tapes a lot. The NCR53c810
  driver on Linux does lack disconnect/reconnect support, thus blocking
  the SCSIbus on operations like "mt rewind", "mt fsf" etc. It bears a
  performance penalty on tar-operations - but check out Drews new alpha
  drivers before making a decision, perhaps it does solve all the

  For building servers, the DPT would be the controller of choice anyway
  because of all the nifty hardware cache (with elevator sorting on
  accesses, so cache it is not a silly thing even in a Linux enviroment
  where the OS does the caching) and RAID-Support up to raid level 5.

  If you do not want to spend that much money on computer equipment
  (e.g.: you are having a life) you might go for an ASUS-SP3-SiS with
  AMD-DX2/66 or DX4/100. The SPEA V7 Mirage P64 PCI with 2M DRAM would
  be a good choice, since it uses the Trio64 S3 Chip, which is well
  supported by XFree86(tm)-3.1.1, quite cheap to buy and fast, too.

  Another fine card since XFree86(tm)-3.1 is the fast and cheap

  12.  Thanks

  I want to thank the following people for supporting this document:

  ·  David Lesher ( for extensive help with the
     english language

  ·  Nathanael MAKAREVITCH ( for translating into

  ·  Jun Morimoto ( for translating into

  ·  Marco Melgazzi ( for translating into

  ·  Donald Becker ( for ethernet-

  ·  Drew Eckhardt (drew@kinglear.cs.Colorado.EDU) for SCSI-informations

  ·  Zhahai Stewart ( for help with the intro section

  and many more peole adding information mostly by mail and by posts,
  some of them will be named here:,,
  drew@kinglear.cs.Colorado.EDU (Working at the PCI-NCR53c810-Driver),,,,, (iX-Magazine),,,,,,,,,,,,,
  Ulrich Teichert,,,,,
  Gert Doering (,
  James D. Levine (,
  Georg von Below (,
  Jerome Meyers (,
  Angelo Haritsis (,
  archie@CS.Berkeley.EDU and his friend

  13.  copyright/legalese

  (c)opyright 1993,94,97,2001 by Michael Will - the GPL (Gnu Public
  License) applies. See last section about this.

  If you sell this HOWTO on a CD or in a book I would be happy to have a
  copy for reference.


  Contact me, either via eMail or call +49-7071-889710.

  Trademarks are owned by their owners. There is no warranty on the
  information in this document.

  For german users I am offering tested, preinstalled / preconfigured
  and supported Linux-PCI-machines. Call me at 07071-889710

  14.  GPL - Gnu Public License

                      GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE
                         Version 2, June 1991

   Copyright (C) 1989, 1991 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
                            675 Mass Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
   Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies
   of this license document, but changing it is not allowed.


    The licenses for most software are designed to take away your
  freedom to share and change it.  By contrast, the GNU General Public
  License is intended to guarantee your freedom to share and change free
  software--to make sure the software is free for all its users.  This
  General Public License applies to most of the Free Software
  Foundation's software and to any other program whose authors commit to
  using it.  (Some other Free Software Foundation software is covered by
  the GNU Library General Public License instead.)  You can apply it to
  your programs, too.

    When we speak of free software, we are referring to freedom, not
  price.  Our General Public Licenses are designed to make sure that you
  have the freedom to distribute copies of free software (and charge for
  this service if you wish), that you receive source code or can get it
  if you want it, that you can change the software or use pieces of it
  in new free programs; and that you know you can do these things.

    To protect your rights, we need to make restrictions that forbid
  anyone to deny you these rights or to ask you to surrender the rights.
  These restrictions translate to certain responsibilities for you if you
  distribute copies of the software, or if you modify it.

    For example, if you distribute copies of such a program, whether
  gratis or for a fee, you must give the recipients all the rights that
  you have.  You must make sure that they, too, receive or can get the
  source code.  And you must show them these terms so they know their

    We protect your rights with two steps: (1) copyright the software, and
  (2) offer you this license which gives you legal permission to copy,
  distribute and/or modify the software.

    Also, for each author's protection and ours, we want to make certain
  that everyone understands that there is no warranty for this free
  software.  If the software is modified by someone else and passed on, we
  want its recipients to know that what they have is not the original, so
  that any problems introduced by others will not reflect on the original
  authors' reputations.

    Finally, any free program is threatened constantly by software
  patents.  We wish to avoid the danger that redistributors of a free
  program will individually obtain patent licenses, in effect making the
  program proprietary.  To prevent this, we have made it clear that any
  patent must be licensed for everyone's free use or not licensed at all.

    The precise terms and conditions for copying, distribution and
  modification follow.

                      GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE

    0. This License applies to any program or other work which contains
  a notice placed by the copyright holder saying it may be distributed
  under the terms of this General Public License.  The "Program", below,
  refers to any such program or work, and a "work based on the Program"
  means either the Program or any derivative work under copyright law:
  that is to say, a work containing the Program or a portion of it,
  either verbatim or with modifications and/or translated into another
  language.  (Hereinafter, translation is included without limitation in
  the term "modification".)  Each licensee is addressed as "you".

  Activities other than copying, distribution and modification are not
  covered by this License; they are outside its scope.  The act of
  running the Program is not restricted, and the output from the Program
  is covered only if its contents constitute a work based on the
  Program (independent of having been made by running the Program).
  Whether that is true depends on what the Program does.

    1. You may copy and distribute verbatim copies of the Program's
  source code as you receive it, in any medium, provided that you
  conspicuously and appropriately publish on each copy an appropriate
  copyright notice and disclaimer of warranty; keep intact all the
  notices that refer to this License and to the absence of any warranty;
  and give any other recipients of the Program a copy of this License
  along with the Program.

  You may charge a fee for the physical act of transferring a copy, and
  you may at your option offer warranty protection in exchange for a fee.

    2. You may modify your copy or copies of the Program or any portion
  of it, thus forming a work based on the Program, and copy and
  distribute such modifications or work under the terms of Section 1
  above, provided that you also meet all of these conditions:

      a) You must cause the modified files to carry prominent notices
      stating that you changed the files and the date of any change.

      b) You must cause any work that you distribute or publish, that in
      whole or in part contains or is derived from the Program or any
      part thereof, to be licensed as a whole at no charge to all third
      parties under the terms of this License.

      c) If the modified program normally reads commands interactively
      when run, you must cause it, when started running for such
      interactive use in the most ordinary way, to print or display an
      announcement including an appropriate copyright notice and a
      notice that there is no warranty (or else, saying that you provide
      a warranty) and that users may redistribute the program under
      these conditions, and telling the user how to view a copy of this
      License.  (Exception: if the Program itself is interactive but
      does not normally print such an announcement, your work based on
      the Program is not required to print an announcement.)

  These requirements apply to the modified work as a whole.  If
  identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the Program,
  and can be reasonably considered independent and separate works in
  themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not apply to those
  sections when you distribute them as separate works.  But when you
  distribute the same sections as part of a whole which is a work based
  on the Program, the distribution of the whole must be on the terms of
  this License, whose permissions for other licensees extend to the
  entire whole, and thus to each and every part regardless of who wrote it.

  Thus, it is not the intent of this section to claim rights or contest
  your rights to work written entirely by you; rather, the intent is to
  exercise the right to control the distribution of derivative or
  collective works based on the Program.

  In addition, mere aggregation of another work not based on the Program
  with the Program (or with a work based on the Program) on a volume of
  a storage or distribution medium does not bring the other work under
  the scope of this License.
    3. You may copy and distribute the Program (or a work based on it,
  under Section 2) in object code or executable form under the terms of
  Sections 1 and 2 above provided that you also do one of the following:

      a) Accompany it with the complete corresponding machine-readable
      source code, which must be distributed under the terms of Sections
      1 and 2 above on a medium customarily used for software interchange; or,

      b) Accompany it with a written offer, valid for at least three
      years, to give any third party, for a charge no more than your
      cost of physically performing source distribution, a complete
      machine-readable copy of the corresponding source code, to be
      distributed under the terms of Sections 1 and 2 above on a medium
      customarily used for software interchange; or,

      c) Accompany it with the information you received as to the offer
      to distribute corresponding source code.  (This alternative is
      allowed only for noncommercial distribution and only if you
      received the program in object code or executable form with such
      an offer, in accord with Subsection b above.)

  The source code for a work means the preferred form of the work for
  making modifications to it.  For an executable work, complete source
  code means all the source code for all modules it contains, plus any
  associated interface definition files, plus the scripts used to
  control compilation and installation of the executable.  However, as a
  special exception, the source code distributed need not include
  anything that is normally distributed (in either source or binary
  form) with the major components (compiler, kernel, and so on) of the
  operating system on which the executable runs, unless that component
  itself accompanies the executable.

  If distribution of executable or object code is made by offering
  access to copy from a designated place, then offering equivalent
  access to copy the source code from the same place counts as
  distribution of the source code, even though third parties are not
  compelled to copy the source along with the object code.

    4. You may not copy, modify, sublicense, or distribute the Program
  except as expressly provided under this License.  Any attempt
  otherwise to copy, modify, sublicense or distribute the Program is
  void, and will automatically terminate your rights under this License.
  However, parties who have received copies, or rights, from you under
  this License will not have their licenses terminated so long as such
  parties remain in full compliance.

    5. You are not required to accept this License, since you have not
  signed it.  However, nothing else grants you permission to modify or
  distribute the Program or its derivative works.  These actions are
  prohibited by law if you do not accept this License.  Therefore, by
  modifying or distributing the Program (or any work based on the
  Program), you indicate your acceptance of this License to do so, and
  all its terms and conditions for copying, distributing or modifying
  the Program or works based on it.

    6. Each time you redistribute the Program (or any work based on the
  Program), the recipient automatically receives a license from the
  original licensor to copy, distribute or modify the Program subject to
  these terms and conditions.  You may not impose any further
  restrictions on the recipients' exercise of the rights granted herein.
  You are not responsible for enforcing compliance by third parties to
  this License.

    7. If, as a consequence of a court judgment or allegation of patent
  infringement or for any other reason (not limited to patent issues),
  conditions are imposed on you (whether by court order, agreement or
  otherwise) that contradict the conditions of this License, they do not
  excuse you from the conditions of this License.  If you cannot
  distribute so as to satisfy simultaneously your obligations under this
  License and any other pertinent obligations, then as a consequence you
  may not distribute the Program at all.  For example, if a patent
  license would not permit royalty-free redistribution of the Program by
  all those who receive copies directly or indirectly through you, then
  the only way you could satisfy both it and this License would be to
  refrain entirely from distribution of the Program.

  If any portion of this section is held invalid or unenforceable under
  any particular circumstance, the balance of the section is intended to
  apply and the section as a whole is intended to apply in other

  It is not the purpose of this section to induce you to infringe any
  patents or other property right claims or to contest validity of any
  such claims; this section has the sole purpose of protecting the
  integrity of the free software distribution system, which is
  implemented by public license practices.  Many people have made
  generous contributions to the wide range of software distributed
  through that system in reliance on consistent application of that
  system; it is up to the author/donor to decide if he or she is willing
  to distribute software through any other system and a licensee cannot
  impose that choice.

  This section is intended to make thoroughly clear what is believed to
  be a consequence of the rest of this License.

    8. If the distribution and/or use of the Program is restricted in
  certain countries either by patents or by copyrighted interfaces, the
  original copyright holder who places the Program under this License
  may add an explicit geographical distribution limitation excluding
  those countries, so that distribution is permitted only in or among
  countries not thus excluded.  In such case, this License incorporates
  the limitation as if written in the body of this License.

    9. The Free Software Foundation may publish revised and/or new versions
  of the General Public License from time to time.  Such new versions will
  be similar in spirit to the present version, but may differ in detail to
  address new problems or concerns.

  Each version is given a distinguishing version number.  If the Program
  specifies a version number of this License which applies to it and "any
  later version", you have the option of following the terms and conditions
  either of that version or of any later version published by the Free
  Software Foundation.  If the Program does not specify a version number of
  this License, you may choose any version ever published by the Free Software

    10. If you wish to incorporate parts of the Program into other free
  programs whose distribution conditions are different, write to the author
  to ask for permission.  For software which is copyrighted by the Free
  Software Foundation, write to the Free Software Foundation; we sometimes
  make exceptions for this.  Our decision will be guided by the two goals
  of preserving the free status of all derivatives of our free software and
  of promoting the sharing and reuse of software generally.

                              NO WARRANTY



                       END OF TERMS AND CONDITIONS

          Appendix: How to Apply These Terms to Your New Programs

    If you develop a new program, and you want it to be of the greatest
  possible use to the public, the best way to achieve this is to make it
  free software which everyone can redistribute and change under these terms.

    To do so, attach the following notices to the program.  It is safest
  to attach them to the start of each source file to most effectively
  convey the exclusion of warranty; and each file should have at least
  the "copyright" line and a pointer to where the full notice is found.

      <one line to give the program's name and a brief idea of what it does.>
      Copyright (C) 19yy  (name of author)

      This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify
      it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by
      the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or
      (at your option) any later version.

      This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
      but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
      GNU General Public License for more details.

      You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
      along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software
      Foundation, Inc., 675 Mass Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA.

  Also add information on how to contact you by electronic and paper mail.

  If the program is interactive, make it output a short notice like this
  when it starts in an interactive mode:

      Gnomovision version 69, Copyright (C) 19yy name of author
      Gnomovision comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY; for details type `show w'.
      This is free software, and you are welcome to redistribute it
      under certain conditions; type `show c' for details.

  The hypothetical commands `show w' and `show c' should show the appropriate
  parts of the General Public License.  Of course, the commands you use may
  be called something other than `show w' and `show c'; they could even be
  mouse-clicks or menu items--whatever suits your program.

  You should also get your employer (if you work as a programmer) or your
  school, if any, to sign a "copyright disclaimer" for the program, if
  necessary.  Here is a sample; alter the names:

    Yoyodyne, Inc., hereby disclaims all copyright interest in the program
    `Gnomovision' (which makes passes at compilers) written by James Hacker.

    (signature of Ty Coon), 1 April 1989
    Ty Coon, President of Vice

  This General Public License does not permit incorporating your program into
  proprietary programs.  If your program is a subroutine library, you may
  consider it more useful to permit linking proprietary applications with the
  library.  If this is what you want to do, use the GNU Library General
  Public License instead of this License.

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