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P-Pro on a P2 mother board

Posted on 1998-02-15
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Last Modified: 2012-05-04
I am interested in the Abit KP6 daughter card.  My Company (Community Wide Web of Stockton) is interested in buying a dual processor motherboard that is compatible with BSD UNIX.  We have researched the options and we have found that the Pentium Pro is still the leader in the low-end server CPU race.

Also, having researched this, we discovered that the P-Pro and the P-2 are compatible with the addition of the Abit KP6 daughter card.  Because we do not want to pass up the option of future expandability, I have come to you to ask you several questions pertaining to the feasibility of this option.

These questions are:

1. Are these cards compatible with the Intel LX chip set?
2. Can one use these cards with the P-Pro in a dual configuration.
3. Will these cards allow the use of 1 Meg P-Pro CPU's? on the LX chipset?
4. What motherboards are these cards compatible with?
A. Dual?
B. Only those made by Abit?
C. AGP?
5. Will the use of SDRAM be an option with this configuration?
6. Where can I get them?

Thank you for your time,
      Corey McGuire
      Net-Op
      Community Wide Web of Stockton

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Question by:coreyfro
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Expert Comment

by:jhance
ID: 1128510
The PPro CPU and the PII CPU (i.e. the core processor) are virtually the same.  The biggest difference is in the L1 cache where on the PPro, it is integrated into the same package (although it is actually a separate chip), and in the PII, it is mounted on the circuit board as separate components.  The speed is also different, in the PPro, the cache runs at full CPU speed where on PII, the cache runs at half speed.   The bus protocol, however is the same and hence you have vendors which have made daughtercards which take the PPro and mount them into SLOT1 motherboards.  For a short time, this made financial sense as Intel's original pricing on PII was out of step with it's performance.  Since that time, however, the PII has dropped in price dramatically and it doesn't make sense any more except in a few cases.  One might be the need for a 1MB full speed cache.  I think you might possibly find an application where a 1MB full speed cache on a PPro 200MHz would outperform some of the PII chips.  With PIIs now available at 333MHz, I think the days of the PPro are numbered.  Really the only place where they are still the only choice would be multiprocessor systems with more than 2 CPUs.  Other than that, PIIs are both cheaper and faster.

As far as compatibility, I wouldn't trust anyone's answer other than the manufacturer of the daughtercard.  They likely only support certain motherboards/chipsets and any other use would be at your own peril.
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Author Comment

by:coreyfro
ID: 1128511
I am aware of all of these points, though i thank you for you answer.  However, this is not the answer i was looking for.

Also, I am in the process of asking them via phone and e-mail, but often times the tech people know less than I.  That is why I came here, to find people smarter than myself ;-)
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Author Comment

by:coreyfro
ID: 1128512
btw.... that application is server.... a dual p-pro 166 (512k cache)out performs a dual p-pro 200 (with 256k cache)
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Expert Comment

by:jrhelgeson
ID: 1128513
From what I understand, the p-pro makes a better server than the P-II
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Accepted Solution

by:
dew_associates earned 400 total points
ID: 1128514
Hi Corey!

Hopefully the following will help you!

I'm not going to comment on some of the other comments here as I believe some of it to be either over simplification or conjecture, but then again opinions are like..

Anyway...
1. Are these cards compatible with the Intel LX chip set?

.....No Intel designed the LX cipset around the PII processor for slot one and for the upcoming slot 2.

2. Can one use these cards with the P-Pro in a dual configuration.

.....This depends largely on the card and motherboard compatability. Intel ran some tests a short while ago on a modified Venus board, but it didn't fly very well. Frankly, I think the idea was more someone's dream than reality. Based upon the LX architecture, you would surely see a degredation of performance in multiple processor environments. With the sudden drop in processor and motherboard prices lately, you may want to consider whether a quad P-Pro board would serve your purpose, or an I960 qualified board. Finding P-Pro 166 processors is relatively easy to locate, and contrary to some opinions the P-Pro isn't even close to reaching the end of production.

3. Will these cards allow the use of 1 Meg P-Pro CPU's? on the LX chipset?

Not applicable!

4. What motherboards are these cards compatible with?

A. Dual?  N/A

B. Only those made by Abit? (as far as the Abit daughter card is concerned, yes)

C. AGP?  (AGP is available only to the LX chipset-see above)


5. Will the use of SDRAM be an option with this configuration?

This depends largely on the manufacturer of the motherboard, type of chipset and design focus of the motherboard. You would be well served to back into this issue by first determining your requirements and then design the server components around them leaving headroom for growth.

6. Where can I get them?  Direct from an Abit reseller, although I doubt that you'll find a reseller that will support them in any environment. It's like training Peck's Bad Boy, nobody wants the job!

Dennis


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