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I've blown almost an entire weekend and $410 because I decided to shift some processors around Friday night. I decided to move my 1800 Athlon XP processor from my server to my desktop, my 1600 Athlon XP processor from my desktop to my other workstation; and the 1200 Athlon from my workstation to the server. This story includes details of breaking traces on motherboards, the magic smoke escaping from my Athlon XP 1600 processor, a new Gigabyte KT600-based motherboard w/ DDR400 and a new Athlon XP 2600 to go with it, adventures in upgrading to kernel 2.6.0-test5 because the KT600 is not supported by 2.4.x and will not be, AND a brand-new processor for sale, cheap!

  1. Removed the fans and processors from all machines involved.
  2. Attempted to install the Athlon XP 1800 in machine that previously had a 1600. Machine refuses to boot. No beep, no nothing.
  3. Hum. Ok. Lets try the workstation. Insert 1600 chip in to 1200 box. Same thing.
  4. Get on internet and discover that the 1800 should be working in the 1600; the 1600 in the 1200 will need a BIOS flash.
  5. Reinsert 1200 in to 1200 box. Flash BIOS. Confirm all is well. Reinsert 1600 core in to 1200 box. Power up. Long warning tone and smoke and a horrible smell of burning transistors is ejected from the region of the processor. Scratch one processor.
  6. We shake our heads and put the 1200 back in the 1200 box. The rest of the machine is okay. 1200 stays there.
  7. 1800 in 1600 box is still not working. We take the 1800 back to it's original box (which, thus far, has been left alone) to see if we perhaps statically damaged the 1800 chip. In the process of reattaching the fan to the processor die, the screwdriver slips from the fan mounting clip and punches a hole in a board trace to the memory interfaces. (We didn't discover that the hole was there until much latter.) We curse the mounting clip many times but get it reattached. This box won't boot now. No beeps, no nothing.
  8. At this point, we think we've destroyed two processors. Saturday morning we head down to Computer Depo and buy 2 new processors. One of our original motherboards doesn't support the new T-bird Athlon cores. They don't make the Palimino cores anymore so we have to buy a new motherboard and memory to host the new chip. Thus the Athlon XP 2600 and DDR400 Gigabyte board is purchased. We also buy a Athlon XP 2000, the smallest they have.
  9. Spent 4 hours removing the old motherboard from the desktop and replacing it with the new Gigabyte. Boot in to linux to find that most everything is the same since the old MB was via based, however AGP and USB are not working at all; the MB is USB 2.0 and AGP 3.0. Support only exists in kernel 2.6.0-test3 and higher.
  10. Pull kernel-2.6.0 and copy my old .config and reconfigure the whole system adding the new built in ALSA, disabling the alsasound init scripts. Reboots and works okay on first try however, Gnome, KDE and xterm cannot open a new terminal. I discover that /dev/pts has wierd permissions. I add a correcting chmod command to /etc/init.d/local.start to fix it. KDE and xterm are fixed. Gnome still doesn't work.
  11. Somewhere in here wine has been completely zapped.
  12. Go back to 1800 server and insert new 2000 chip. The system now posts but reports a memory problem. We examine the board more closely and find that the slipped screwdriver punched a hole in a single trace leading the the DDR memory interface.
  13. We give up on that box and decide to just use the non-T-bird supporting motherboard from the desktop system and an older 750 Athlon we have lying around. After a few hours of removing the bad MB and installing the new-old one, the server is back online -- reconfiguration still in progress.

SO, I now have a brand new T-bird Athlon XP 2000 and AMD fan that I'd be willing to sell for $45 (paid $72). Still in the box. The PCM heat compound on the bottom of the fan will need to be cleaned and replaced (a few bucks at a computer store).

Anyone have any kernel 2.6.0 tips? So far it's been pretty stable. 3D acceleration is not working very well -- complex OpenGL apps seg fault. I also get some weird depmod error messages when booting. IDE SCSI emulation is also not working.


color, uphair, smile
Jason D. Clinton

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September 2011


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