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Old 01-21-2019, 02:02 AM   #21
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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All the repair work he sent me were for a medical center he worked for.
wow thats nice and an excellent plus point to advertise your work about. shows that your work is highly reliable enough for medical use when lives could be dependant or at stake! not many can boast that! hahaha!
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Old 01-22-2019, 01:38 PM   #22
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

I just did another.
It's for a weird sco unix based glass business box.

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Originally Posted by ratdude747 View Post
Go for it. KC8ADU has posted about it a few times (poly modding proprietary CNC motherboards that were socket 7).
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Old 01-24-2019, 09:56 PM   #23
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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Funny, I didn't really think many would ever notice that.
But that's what the pictures are for, right?
I see you also have "Experimental" BIOS in there?? (bottom of the screen)
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Old 01-25-2019, 11:02 AM   #24
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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But that's what the pictures are for, right?
I see you also have "Experimental" BIOS in there?? (bottom of the screen)
That's the BP6 BIOS, which has had a few more alterations than just the 'message line'....

The main thing, the BP6 has a utterly useless (even back in the day) Highpoint HPT366 U66 IDE controller onboard. THis controller can not be disabled either in the BIOS or with jumpers....so when you'd run a real controller (SCSI, ATA133, or SATA), it tends cause conflicts @ boot time, and the HPT option ROM always got priority.....so I removed the bastard!!
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Old 01-25-2019, 12:25 PM   #25
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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The main thing, the BP6 has a utterly useless (even back in the day) Highpoint HPT366 U66 IDE controller onboard. THis controller can not be disabled either in the BIOS or with jumpers....
what happens if u desoldered that useless controller from the board? does it freeze or hang the mobo post process trying to detect the controller that isnt there? i'd luv to desolder that useless shit from the board without messing around with bios modding!
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Old 01-25-2019, 01:18 PM   #26
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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what happens if u desoldered that useless controller from the board? does it freeze or hang the mobo post process trying to detect the controller that isnt there? i'd luv to desolder that useless shit from the board without messing around with bios modding!
But that's more or less irreversible... I used to do that too (may have ruined a rare AMI dual Slot-1 Coppermine board that way). Especially with socketed BIOS chips and having a chip writer or spare hotflashing board, soft mods are a lot better. Want to reverse it? Flash a new Rom. Screw it up? Hotflash a fresh chip and try again.
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Old 01-25-2019, 07:03 PM   #27
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

Thanks for having me aboard this forum is awesome
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Old 01-25-2019, 09:44 PM   #28
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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Originally Posted by ratdude747 View Post
But that's more or less irreversible... I used to do that too (may have ruined a rare AMI dual Slot-1 Coppermine board that way). Especially with socketed BIOS chips and having a chip writer or spare hotflashing board, soft mods are a lot better. Want to reverse it? Flash a new Rom. Screw it up? Hotflash a fresh chip and try again.
Exactly. Removing the chip from the board is too 'permanent'....and I honestly don't see desoldering it from the board having a happy ending. The HPT366 controller still shows up (and works) in the windows device manager, and that's fine, it causes no problems....it's just no longer bootable anymore (hence option ROM removed from the motherboard's firmware), which is all that matters.

That said, I have considered seeing if it was possible to swap the HPT366 chip for a HPT370/372 chip, which would upgrade it to ATA100 RAID....but I have not been able to find the pinout for either IC to determine if it was even remotely possible for it to work. They contain the same number of legs, I just have no clue if they're pinned the same. Implementing the HPT370 firmware would be easy if the electrical mappings were compatible with eachother (both being Highpoint chipsets). The HPT370 is what the VP6 got, and was a great controller for the time.
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Old 01-28-2019, 03:45 PM   #29
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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Originally Posted by ratdude747 View Post
Especially with socketed BIOS chips and having a chip writer or spare hotflashing board, soft mods are a lot better. Want to reverse it? Flash a new Rom. Screw it up? Hotflash a fresh chip and try again.
I don't know - for me, I'd rather do hardware work than software mods/flashing. Much less likely to screw it up that way - again, this applies to me only.
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Old 02-23-2019, 05:40 PM   #30
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

Looky what showed up today!!



VP6 poly edition #3 showed up....the only one that's still out there is #2, which he said might be a while before its taken out of service. When I asked what these were used for, the response was "I really can't tell you that due to non-disclosure agreements", so they aren't someone's toys atleast....but the polies held up!

...and they sure are purty!




Seeing this one again reminded me why it was an unusual one.... Note that TO220 transistor next to the RAM slots:







I bought this board new, and it was part of my original fleet of VP6 servers before it got polymodded and sold off, so I know where it's been all its life (if memory serves me right, its been a lot of years ago)....and this was the first and only one I've ever seen with this package transistor in this place, every other one has been a TO252, with its back soldered to the motherboard. Was Abit just out of them that day? Who knows....but its definitely an oddball!

This board arrived more filthy than #1 did....it was dusty and had some kind of residue all over it.....and it had an 'industrial' odor about it, it smelled like smoke, but not cigarettes....so it got the sink treatment, and all the smaller 100uF and 220uf caps replaced. The CMOS battery was completely dead.....I guess whatever they were doing either never got rebooted or the time/date being correct was unimportant and it would run whatever they did on default settings. The northbridge heatsink is also missing....easy fix....but #3 is home.
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File Type: jpg polyvp6-3_2381.JPG (300.6 KB, 113 views)
File Type: jpg polyvp6-3_2382.JPG (319.0 KB, 114 views)
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Old 02-24-2019, 05:49 PM   #31
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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The CMOS battery was completely dead.....I guess whatever they were doing either never got rebooted or the time/date being correct was unimportant and it would run whatever they did on default settings.
Interesting why that happened. If they really were using this board 24/7, then the ATX PSU 5VSB should have been providing the board with standby power for the CMOS and thus the battery shouldn't have died. Perhaps they had it stored for a few years without power and that killed the battery? Then, as you suggested, perhaps whatever they did didn't really care about time/date and default CMOS settings?

Well, who knows. At least it's back and working now.

BTW, with all these retro builds you do, I imagine you put new CR2032 batteries if they needed it. But when you store them, do you remove the batteries? I know I always do now. In particular, Dell PCs made between the socket 370 and 775 era seem to go through CMOS batteries very quickly, if left unplugged.
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Old 02-24-2019, 07:35 PM   #32
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

^
My RoG Maximus Formula, which ran 24/7 had its battery die.....I shut it off one day to blow dust out of it, fired it back up, lost all its settings....batt was reading 0.

As flunky as this VP6 was, it definitely wasn't a spare/backup....it ran long & hard...but yea, who knows, maybe it sat, maybe it just died...no tellin'.

No, I usually don't remove them...but I should. Dead batteries in the car business is called 'lot rot'....When I fired the P6DGU build the other day, its new batt was dead after sitting a few months.
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Old 02-25-2019, 01:49 PM   #33
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

what brand of battery was in the p6dgu that died fast? i have a feeling that some "low-cost" generic brands of batteries just die fast and dont have much juice in them. would like to know so i can avoid those! and save my money NOT buying junk batteries as well!

but yes, given there are some motherboards that are just power hungry and just chew through cmos batteries. not sure what kind of rtc circuit and cmos memory retaining circuit those mobos use that require so much power... could be some kind of an internal leakage in the southbridge.

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Old 02-25-2019, 03:02 PM   #34
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

^
It was a Panasonic, it's all I use.
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Old 02-25-2019, 03:18 PM   #35
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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My RoG Maximus Formula, which ran 24/7 had its battery die.....I shut it off one day to blow dust out of it, fired it back up, lost all its settings....batt was reading 0.
LOL

I wonder if the 3-year-rule (or similar) for CR-2032 still applies, but dunno, but had to be a bad battery or it was still in full use or near-full use with the motherboard powered up...
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Old 02-26-2019, 02:56 AM   #36
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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It was a Panasonic, it's all I use.
ah ok then. i have used one of those panasonic cr2032 batteries before and they are very good. lasted 5 years in an occasionally powered p4 rig. so i guess the p6dgu mobo's rtc and/or cmos circuit is just power hungry...
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Old 03-03-2019, 03:17 PM   #37
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

I figured I'd make a quickie build out of #3, just for the hell of it..... This is pretty much just the cliffs notes.........

Some old Deer case with a 350w dual fan Allied PSU. The case had some crappy P4 system in it when I got it. It was disassembled & washed. The PSU had to be recapped of course, and the fans stripped & regreased.



matching sony cdrom & cdrw under some black icydock 68-pin hdd trays.


Going together.


Installing XP


FF 24.8.1


Specs are:
Abit VP6 (obviously)
2x 1GHz CPU's
2gb RAM
ATI 9600 AiW GPU
Adaptec U160 SCSI RAID
SB PCI (ES1373) Audio
2x 9.1gb fujitsu 10K's in a raid0

Poly Edition # 1 is still sitting on the shelf, and #2 is still out in the world somewhere....but yay for # 3!!
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File Type: jpg vp6-poly3_2417.JPG (271.3 KB, 79 views)
File Type: jpg vp6-poly3_2419.JPG (249.3 KB, 77 views)
File Type: jpg vp6-poly3_2423.JPG (329.7 KB, 78 views)
File Type: jpg vp6-poly3_2427.JPG (271.0 KB, 77 views)
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Old 03-06-2019, 08:14 PM   #38
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

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I figured I'd make a quickie build out of #3, just for the hell of it..... This is pretty much just the cliffs notes.........

Some old Deer case with a 350w dual fan Allied PSU. The case had some crappy P4 system in it when I got it. It was disassembled & washed. The PSU had to be recapped of course, and the fans stripped & regreased.
Not bad at all!
As I've mentioned, I'm not a big fan of black cases, but that Deer case actually looks very decent. Would have been even better if it had a side window (again, I'm not a big fan of those either) to showcase that classic motherboard. Builds like that back in the days would make anyone drool (especially when LEDs weren't common - remember those days? )

Anyways, how was the Deer PSU internally? Gutless? Borderline-acceptable? Decent? I hope you at least removed the dummy load resistors in it. Most Deers have them where they dissipate too much heat and keep the caps quite toasty. Going of top of my head, usually 100-Ohm 2W for the 12V rail, 47-Ohm 2W for the 5V, and 6.8 to 10-Ohm 2W for the 3.3V rail. From these, it's the 12V rail that is the worst with 1.44 Watts of dissipated heat - enough to darken the PCB, usually.

I see you also used the 9600 AIW you got recently.
It's a nice card. Might be a good idea to put a fan on it if you ever use it for playing 3D games, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Topcat View Post
Poly Edition # 1 is still sitting on the shelf, and #2 is still out in the world somewhere....but yay for # 3!!
Well, I suppose #1 is just special and #2 is still at work... so that leaves #3 as the "guinea pig" for playing with?

Anyways, good work, as always.

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I wonder if the 3-year-rule (or similar) for CR-2032 still applies
It should not, unless you are dealing with very crappy no-name Chinese CR2032 batts.
CR2032 generally are designed for very low self-discharge, and so most should last at least 5 years on the shelf, if not more.

In use, it will vary with drain current. As Chaos mentioned, some mobos are just power-hungry when it comes to their RTC/CMOS circuits. But not all. My AsRock 939Dual-SATA2 has been sitting in the closet since... 2009-2010 maybe? I use it for testing video cards, so it only has about few days per year (if you added all of the hours together) where it is connected and powered by a PSU. The rest of the time, it's shelved. And it still hasn't managed to loose my CMOS settings.... though its battery has dropped to almost 2.7V now. Considering that's nearly 10 years on the shelf, however, I'd say that one has pretty well-designed RTC/CMOS battery circuit. Meanwhile, my OptiPlex 170L mobo will munch on a CR2032 battery in 1-3 months, if I let it sit disconnected from power. For that matter, I don't even bother putting in a CMOS battery in it anymore. It has a stock Dell BIOS with not many options, so it takes only a minute or two to set it all up to proper values.
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Old 05-16-2019, 11:47 AM   #39
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

The final frontier for the VP6 & me.......this is just some random VP6 I have on hand.



Ok, running a single Tualatin....yawn yawn, not difficult with the right socket mods.....but running them dual, an interesting nostalgic conquest since it requires some hardwire mods that I haven't completely figured out nor was this done in its glory...heck, I don't know if it was ever accomplished....but the key to this has to be the PLL220-11 chip. Stay tuned!
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Old 05-18-2019, 08:41 PM   #40
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Default Re: Badcaps.net Origin & Roots - Topcat's VP6 Thread!

.....and this project officially begins with a brand new in box VP6!!

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