building a celeron dual processor system

Posted on 2003-11-20
Last Modified: 2010-04-27
I have at hand, two separate machines with following hardware

PentiumIII Celeron 266MHz CPU (Slot1 Based)
PentiumIII CeleronA 336MHz CPU (PGA370 Based)
PC100 and PC66 SDRAM sticks of 64MB, 32MB, 128MB
Trident Blade 3790 AGP Display with 4MB VRAM
SiS 6326 AGP Display with 2MB VRAM

(currently they are being run with two via motherboards)

My objectives are
1. building a single, cheap, dual processor machine
2. using as much as possible hardware from above list
3. why? - just for having a dual system on desk

My assumptions
1. system would not be a high performance box
2. its okay if both the cpu can be used together and with lower possible speed

My doubts
1. can either of the above processor be used in a SMP, as IS
2. is it possible to get the motherboards in the market now? (my local market

in india, hardly sells smp boards)

I have seen one link where the person has used above cpu mix using one adaptor

which allows to plug a pga370 celeron into slot 1.

waiting for suggestions/instructions/links

Question by:kiranghag
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Assisted Solution

philby11 earned 50 total points
ID: 9795714
there are slot 1 riser cards available for the PGA370 chips.
check this out
Also if you need any tips on multiprocessor systems try this
LVL 16

Accepted Solution

InteraX earned 100 total points
ID: 9795741
Unfortunately, I don't think you will be able to do this with your CPU's.

When creating a dual CPU system with intel chips the two CPU's need to be
1. the same speed.
2. the same type.
3. the same bus speed.
4. the same cache size.
5. compatible steppings.


Slockets are available which will enable you to put your s370 cpu into a slot 1 based board.

That's the first thing.
Secondly, you would have difficulty finding a slot based dual processor board today that works.

If you can sort out the above 2 issiues, then the RAM could all work together if you have enough slots and run the RAM with conservative memory timing. Without testing, it would be impossible to tell. You should check this after building with something like memtest.

Either graphics card would work in the system as long as the above requirements have been satified.

Sorry if this isn't the answer you want to hear, but would rather give you an honset opinion than encourage you to spend money on an SMP board to find it doesn't work.

Good luck.
LVL 12

Assisted Solution

public earned 50 total points
ID: 9795845
An SMP is not practical with your hardware. However you can build a multicomputer cluster. Either use linux now, or wait for windows availability.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 9796634
With the hardware you have there, there's only one answer: Can't be done...

Celerons can't be used for dual systems..
Two processors have to be exacly the same model (doesn't apply here)


LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 9796777
Celeron's aren't capable of Symmetrical Multi Processing, LucF is correct.
Even if these were P3's the cost of the motherboard would probably be more than the trouble was worth.
Tigerdirect has an entire XP1600 system for about $200, which would be 4 or 5 times faster than a dual 266.
Use your current machines for backup, play with other operating systems, stick a webcam out your window, make a web or DNS serve, stick one in your DMZ as a honeypot or IDS with snort,  or donate them...

Expert Comment

ID: 9796845
LucF is right.  I looked into doing this a while back with some of the hardware I had and some free Celeron processors I was given.  Its just not possible with Celeron CPU based computers.
As for using the Socket370 CPU with a Slot1 adapter, it can be done and has been doing quite a lot in the past.  The main thing to be aware of though is that you should get a high quality adapter and use a good fan.  Remember that there are physical differences between the contacts on the chips, the Slot1 has far less contacts to the motherboard than the socket 370 processors, thus you are likely to have to leave out data/functions or have other negative effects.
LVL 16

Assisted Solution

InteraX earned 100 total points
ID: 9796958
Old celerons were able to do SMP. This was discovered by many small OEM's and when intel discovered this they removed the ability to do this from the CPU's. Intel discovered a drmatic drop in the volume of sales for their premium chips and a dramatic increase in sales of their celeron CPU's. Any celeron CPU produced in the past 2 years has had this functionality disabled. The hardware is still there, but the connections to the sockets have been removed/disabled, much like the old 486SX which was a 486DX that had pins controlling the maths coprocessor cut off the CPU.

I remember building plenty of these systems a few years ago.
LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 9797113
well, i found few links which mentioned the surgery method to make a celeron smp capable.
they used the pga370-slot 1 adaptor and managd to modify it with a solder/dril.
some even mentioned that msi sold adaptor specially made for this. u could just plug in a pga370 in it and it becase smp compatible.
but i just fear that the pga-slot 1 adaptor mentioned in those link will not be available in here.

i was aware that the both processor should be same and celerons could not be directly used in smp
hence i just wanted to know if atleast one of them could be made smp compatible  so that i could save on that money and buy only one additional processor instead of two new identical.

LucF: Celerons can't be used for dual systems..
dont agree, unless u really mean "out of box celerons"

old computer market in my country is very strong, i can even buy a 486 system today for almost $100
but same cant be said in terms of dual boards, slockets and other stuff.

LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 9797124
>>Use your current machines for backup, play with other operating systems,
>>stick a webcam out your window, make a web or DNS serve,
>>stick one in your DMZ as a honeypot or IDS with snort,  

thats exactly what i do with them now

>>or donate them...
i got them in the same way
LVL 32

Assisted Solution

LucF earned 50 total points
ID: 9797224
>unless u really mean "out of box celerons"
Yes I meant that, but still those are two different CPU's so it still won't work, the processors should match exactly.
LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 9797687
"should" being the operative word, usually...
Though in this case they're so vastly different it seems unlikely it would work.

>i can even buy a 486 system today for almost $100
<starts rummaging through basement....>
I could take a nice vacation with all the boat anchors down there.
LVL 10

Author Comment

ID: 9797763
now if i decide to keep the pga370 (assuming i get a proper slocket), it wont be much useful. pga370 based chip that i have, is a celeron and not a celeronA, thus lacks cache
 but this chip is more easy to use in the smp system

the slot based celeron with me is a celeronA, but i m afraid to do the surgery on it directly..

having two L2 cacheless cpus in a smp system would be much slower than the celeronA based smp system.

i was hoping for a celeron based system because i was positive about getting a dual p3 board.

i still have two classic pentium100 cpus. one of them is known working on my desk, not tested other. but unless i m real lucky, i wont get a mobo for that.
ordering one off the net will be much costly.

talking about majority of people (not corporate), average configurations in our country are pretty low-end.
computers are common but they are still not treated as tv sets.
a good p4 system which is considered as barebone, can be infact a server configuration for many.
and even after buying a big-bang system, people spend most of the time surfing net, playing mp3 and wathing movies.

and due to this, cheaper systems are still in use....
LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 9797840
>people spend most of the time surfing net, playing mp3 and wathing movies.
ain't it the truth

broadband has driven a lot of the processor envy in the states, as has gaming
my wife just retired her 333 only because she's doing a lot of photo editing now, but my daughter is happily using it as she spends ALL of her time surfing, playing mp3s, chatting and wathing movies LOL

Micronics and others produced dual processor P5 motherboards, though some were EISA and those that were PCI had early bridge sets. If there's a market I'd still try to unload the old stuff and combine the money on a new system... unless you just like to tinker :-)


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