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    Finished up the Gateway server sleeper today. Not as much of a sleeper as I wanted it to be, it was doomed to period-specific hardware because of the SCA backplane....but it turned out pretty darn nice IMO.

    Tied up the wiring.....

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    Buttoned up and XP installed...

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    Only one hiccup, the Adaptec 2120S RAID controller ended up being bad. Kept getting timeout errors and drives dropping out of the array. Replaced drives, thinking they were the culprits, but the issues continued on all drives on all bays. I pulled that and stuck an Adaptec 29160 64-bit card in its place with a single Cheetah 147gb 15K U160. No more issues. The crystaldisk results are pretty good for hardware of this era, this is where the 15,000 RPM really shines.

    Specs:

    Supermicro P4DCE+
    2x Prestonia core Xeons @ 3GHz
    2GB RDRAM
    ATI X1600 Pro 512mb
    Adaptec 29160 64-bit SCSI controller
    All housed in a Gateway 2000 930 chassis

    Q3A played silky smooth in 1600x1200 with everything on.
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      This was the leftover system after I snatched the Tableau Forensic bridge out of it for my data recovery station......so now to have some fun with it...............excuse the wire mess...it's all cobbled together in test form powered by my bench supply.

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        The final results of the above Coolermaster setup....

        I won't go into all the gore....but here's the power distribution & switching controller for the lighting that allows the front panel on/off switch to be used. The wiring & connectors were harvested from junk TV's.

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        Enclosed in a black box under the drive trays. The shell was an old power brick that I stripped out and repurposed.


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        Still as difficult as ever to photograph....


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        Lights off by the front panel switch....

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        Lights on....

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        Ok, not really a big deal....but this was pretty much an orphan system I had no use for....I snatched what I wanted from it....so why not have a little fun!!
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          Next build I'm kind of excited about. It was a drop off for recycling. Dell XPS 630i. These are slightly on the rare side....but this one was a little more unusual; as it's the red-faced one and also the liquid cooled version as well....I didn't even know the liquid cooler was an option with them. The GPU was missing and the PSU has bad caps....so it didn't work. Not sure what GPU it had....there were a quite a few GPU options with these, the best one being a GTX285; which probably won't be hard to find.

          Testing the motherboard in the oven:

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          Don't pay any attention to the CPU. I pulled the 9650 out so I could use it elsewhere. I just stuck something in here to test the board....as the first test is 8gb RAM support. It should support 8gb....but lots of internet scuttlebutt says it won't (no POST and beeps errors)....well, not sure what others ran into, but 8gb ran fine for me. I'll let memtest run for a while to be sure, but thus far no issues!!

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          The liquid cooler.....

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          Next will be a 5400-series Xeon test. I don't have any spares laying around that are modified for a LGA775, so I've got one coming. Going for an X5470 3.33GHz quad core. Wasn't going to waste my time on a 5450; as that's the same as the C2Q 9650 that I just pulled out.....no gains at all....so if it's going to be done, it's going to be done for some gain....but so far so good!
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            nForce 650i... now that's a interesting challenge. Weren't those known to have FSB holes?
            Main rig:
            Gigabyte B75M-D3H
            Core i5-3470 3.60GHz
            Gigabyte Geforce GTX650 1GB GDDR5
            16GB DDR3-1600
            Samsung SH-224AB DVD-RW
            FSP Bluestorm II 500W (recapped)
            120GB ADATA + 2x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 ST31000340NS 1TB
            Delux MG760 case

            Comment


              Originally posted by Dan81 View Post
              nForce 650i... now that's a interesting challenge. Weren't those known to have FSB holes?
              FSB holes>? What's that?

              I found a pair of GTX 285's for peanuts....so I guess that cat is out of the bag!!
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                Yeah. A simple explanation: it may not POST at a range of FSBs (let's use 390-401 as example) but will work at the first FSB digit outside that range. (like 389 or 402). nForce 600 and 700 were fairly notorious of this issue.

                As long as the XPS doesn't allow FSBs outside the standard speeds (e.g 333, 667, 800, 1066, 1333, 1600, and I think 1866 as well?) you'll likely be fine. It's only OC-ing that is a pain on those.
                Main rig:
                Gigabyte B75M-D3H
                Core i5-3470 3.60GHz
                Gigabyte Geforce GTX650 1GB GDDR5
                16GB DDR3-1600
                Samsung SH-224AB DVD-RW
                FSP Bluestorm II 500W (recapped)
                120GB ADATA + 2x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 ST31000340NS 1TB
                Delux MG760 case

                Comment


                  Originally posted by Dan81 View Post
                  Yeah. A simple explanation: it may not POST at a range of FSBs (let's use 390-401 as example) but will work at the first FSB digit outside that range. (like 389 or 402). nForce 600 and 700 were fairly notorious of this issue.

                  As long as the XPS doesn't allow FSBs outside the standard speeds (e.g 333, 667, 800, 1066, 1333, 1600, and I think 1866 as well?) you'll likely be fine. It's only OC-ing that is a pain on those.
                  Ok, thanks for the info. I don't plan on any overclocking....this one is more of a resto with a Xeon CPU mod; I won't overclock it.
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                    Yeah, then you'll likely be fine. I can see it has active cooling on the northbridge so that's good - these nVidia chipsets were really crispy.
                    (not that their AMD counterparts were any less cooler )
                    Main rig:
                    Gigabyte B75M-D3H
                    Core i5-3470 3.60GHz
                    Gigabyte Geforce GTX650 1GB GDDR5
                    16GB DDR3-1600
                    Samsung SH-224AB DVD-RW
                    FSP Bluestorm II 500W (recapped)
                    120GB ADATA + 2x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 ST31000340NS 1TB
                    Delux MG760 case

                    Comment


                      Speaking of weird builds... I felt like torturing a old Northwood HT today. Netburst deserves no mercy

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                      Northwood HT 2.8, 1TB Hitachi Ultrastar I had around (7200 RPM, nothing special), HD4870 1GB, 2x512MB DDR400, SATA ODD. All running XP, powered by ASRock's funky P4Dual-915GL mobo.

                      There's no way the CPU would keep up with the 4870 lol
                      Main rig:
                      Gigabyte B75M-D3H
                      Core i5-3470 3.60GHz
                      Gigabyte Geforce GTX650 1GB GDDR5
                      16GB DDR3-1600
                      Samsung SH-224AB DVD-RW
                      FSP Bluestorm II 500W (recapped)
                      120GB ADATA + 2x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 ST31000340NS 1TB
                      Delux MG760 case

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by Dan81 View Post
                        Speaking of weird builds... I felt like torturing a old Northwood HT today. Netburst deserves no mercy

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                        Northwood HT 2.8, 1TB Hitachi Ultrastar I had around (7200 RPM, nothing special), HD4870 1GB, 2x512MB DDR400, SATA ODD. All running XP, powered by ASRock's funky P4Dual-915GL mobo.

                        There's no way the CPU would keep up with the 4870 lol
                        Nice. Someone dropped off a Dimension 8250 system a while back. Supports Northwoods (533FSB max) and RDRAM. I haven't done anything with it yet....but I didn't send it to the R2 scrappers either.
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                          I think I had a chap locally that bought all 4 of my RDRAM sticks. I couldn't find a cheap RDRAM board and honestly didn't really like it either... cooling them down didn't seem like an easy task.

                          For me it's either PC133 SDR (dunno why most people ran away from 845 SDR - it's an rather okay-ish and cheap alternative to Tualatin IMO) or DDR. Especially with the 820's flop, I'm pretty confident of staying away from RDRAM.
                          Main rig:
                          Gigabyte B75M-D3H
                          Core i5-3470 3.60GHz
                          Gigabyte Geforce GTX650 1GB GDDR5
                          16GB DDR3-1600
                          Samsung SH-224AB DVD-RW
                          FSP Bluestorm II 500W (recapped)
                          120GB ADATA + 2x Seagate Barracuda ES.2 ST31000340NS 1TB
                          Delux MG760 case

                          Comment


                            My Dell Precision 220 has 512MB of RDRAM. Pretty zippy for what it was back then.
                            Don't buy those $10 PSU "specials". They fail, and they have taken whole computers with them.

                            My computer doubles as a space heater.

                            Permanently Retired Systems:
                            RIP Advantech UNO-3072LA (2008-2021) - Decommissioned and taken out of service permanently due to lack of software support for it. Not very likely to ever be recommissioned again.
                            Asus Q550LF (Old main laptop, 2014-2022) - Decommissioned and stripped due to a myriad of problems, the main battery bloating being the final nail in the coffin.


                            Kooky and Kool Systems
                            - 1996 Power Macintosh 7200/120 + PC Compatibility Card - Under Restoration
                            - 1993 Gateway 2000 80486DX/50 - Fully Operational/WIP
                            - 2004 Athlon 64 Retro Gaming System - Indefinitely Parked
                            - Main Workstation - Fully operational!

                            sigpic

                            Comment


                              RDRAM performed very well at the time versus PC100/133 and early DDR1 in the 400/533fsb P4 period....just a short-lived era; as Intel hosed RAMBUS over (or visa versa) with the very over-priced memory. RDRAM era hardware gets more rare every day. Love it or hate it, it has a place in the PC retro kingdom.
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                                CPU came the other day for this.....now we're cookin'!! I didn't even have to hack up hte BIOS to make this work....Dell quietly had the microcode in their BIOS for Xeons. Unusual for Dell...but perhaps done because it was their 'higher end' machine. Tested using air cooling.

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                                Now to test the liquid cooler.

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                                Some AS5 on the CPU.

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                                In the oven. This was an interesting setup for testing outside of its intended environment.

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                                ...and memtesting away... Under this load, it was holding @ ~46*C, good for this CPU. Ambient temp in the room was about 85*F. These CPU's (X5470) are hot-running to begin with.
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                                The lid wouldn't shut with the radiator shroud in there....

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                                Now to clean this up and then ready to move onto the case.....


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                                More later.
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                                  Originally posted by Dan81 View Post
                                  Yeah. A simple explanation: it may not POST at a range of FSBs (let's use 390-401 as example) but will work at the first FSB digit outside that range. (like 389 or 402). nForce 600 and 700 were fairly notorious of this issue.

                                  As long as the XPS doesn't allow FSBs outside the standard speeds (e.g 333, 667, 800, 1066, 1333, 1600, and I think 1866 as well?) you'll likely be fine. It's only OC-ing that is a pain on those.
                                  You weren't joking about that chipset being a little on the fickle side.... I've read horror stories about running more than 4gb RAM in it.... I got a couple BSoD's with memory-related errors. The modules are good and nothing is overclocked. It wasn't a big deal, only happened a couple times after days of abuse....usually happens at boot.

                                  Anyway..... Here's to a beautiful restoration of an XPS 630i. I absolutely love these cases, so pleasant to work with, they breathe very well, and they just have a great look.

                                  This one was filthy....and taking these apart is a chore.

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                                  Down to the bones....

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                                  Parts.

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                                  It was skuzzy enough it had to be washed. It was cold that day, so I made due with the sink instead of taking it outside and using the hose.

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                                  Everything washed....and going back together.

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                                  Repasted the NB chip after cleaning the board & Heatsink.

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                                  Power supply recapped & reinstalled.

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                                  Motherboard reinstalled with the liquid cooler.


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                                  GPU's installed.

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                                  ...and away we go!!

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                                  That cleverly placed lighting....

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                                  SLI baby!

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                                  Some quick load testing & temp checking. These CPU's run miserably hot to begin with, so these temps weren't bad versus air cooling... It was still a bit warm under load but nothing to get excited about.

                                  No load:

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                                  CPU-Z stress test loads:

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                                  ...and done!!

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                                  The specs:

                                  Dell XPS 630i
                                  CPU: Xeon X5470 quad core @ 3.33GHz
                                  RAM: 8GB DDR2
                                  GPU: 2x GTX285 in SLI
                                  120GB SSD w/ win7 pro
                                  750W Dell PSU. Still don't know who makes these....but they're well built and very solid.

                                  I'd like to stumble upon one more of these cases and mod it with a window with modern guts.... There's a couple of these on fleabay.....but priced more than I'd go for it to possibly be butchered....but this one is wrapped up. Nice addition to the restored retro fleet.
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                                    Very nice restoration on this computer
                                    9 PC LCD Monitor
                                    6 LCD Flat Screen TV
                                    30 Desk Top Switching Power Supply
                                    10 Battery Charger Switching Power Supply for Power Tool
                                    6 18v Lithium Battery Power Boards for Tool Battery Packs
                                    1 XBox 360 Switching Power Supply and M Board
                                    25 Servo Drives 220/460 3 Phase
                                    6 De-soldering Station Switching Power Supply 1 Power Supply
                                    1 Dell Mother Board
                                    15 Computer Power Supply
                                    1 HP Printer Supply & Control Board * lighting finished it *


                                    These two repairs where found with a ESR meter...> Temp at 50*F then at 90*F the ESR reading more than 10%

                                    1 Over Head Crane Current Sensing Board ( VFD Failure Five Years Later )
                                    2 Hem Saw Computer Stack Board

                                    All of these had CAPs POOF
                                    All of the mosfet that are taken out by bad caps

                                    Comment


                                      Originally posted by Topcat View Post

                                      I'd like to stumble upon one more of these cases and mod it with a window with modern guts....
                                      Ask and ye shall receive. Had another red bezel XPS 630i dropped off last week (same customer that dropped off the other one). PSU bad; heard something *snap* in it when I plugged it in, no powerup and no STBY. I was not able to identify what snapped. Fuse good....all sink'd transistors good (not shorted at least, no smoke, no stink, nothing visibly burnt). Not going waste much more time on it, they can be had all day long for ~$30. This case can also take a standard ATX PSU....but anyway, retested the board with another PSU, and it works....but I'm not going to restore this one to original condition. This one did not come with the liquid cooler....and I can't seem to find another one.... Just going to store it away until I figure out what I want to do with it. Case is in fabulous condition, just the usual dirty for something approaching 20yrs old.
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