K6-2+ 550mhz Advice

I know this question is two years old question, but despite the system I built last summer with an Athlon XP 1900+ and a Soyo KT333 Dragon Ultra, I am now getting all worked up about getting my second computer running at 600 mhz with a K6-2+ 550mhz cpu. I play a lot of CRPG's at home using a LAN, and I want this second computer running as good as it can. Most of my daily use is on this machine, too.

My board is a Soyo 5ema+ v1.1 and I have been using a K6-2 550mhz. My research has shown me it will support this K6-2+ CPU, and that it will improve things quite a bit--it is due in the mail early next week. I flashed my bios last month, among other things, in an attempt to get this older machine running higher fps playing Dungeon Siege (I am locked at 6.0 fps during combat with all the settings turned down), and I have located undocumented voltage settings of 2.0 and 2.1, so I sould be ready. I do not care about trying to overclock it above 600, and because I have some maxtor hard drives other older devices (including pc100 ram), I am concerned about running the CPU core above 100mhz, so I will likely try 100*6, but 112*5.5=616 does put a smile on my face:) But just getting 600mhz with an L1, L2, and L3 cache will make my second computer a lot happier playing DS and NWN. From what I have read, my old heat sink and fan will do with this cool cpu, but do I need to set the voltage up to 2.1 if I run the 550 at 600? The cpu is listed at 2.0, but I have seen it at other sites as 2.1.

Anyone with experience using the K6-2+ please let me know your thoughts, especially if you have used one on an old soyo board like my 5ema+. Most of what I have read concerns the 500, not the 550, including articles on this site. One of my old motherboards is actually the ASUS P55T2P4, and I will have fun droping a K6-2 in there as well...

K6-2 550Mhz
SY-5ema+ 1.1
Maxtor 20 GB HD 5,200rpm on a PCI ATA133 card (Maxed at 66)
and 2 older drives on IDE 0, a 3gb and a 4 gb
Geforce 2 MX 400 64 MB (core overclocked to 233 and ram to 175)
448 MB Ram (PC 100 and 133 mixed)
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  1. Those undocumented settings are nearly useless to you, as you'll probably want it at 2.2v to overclock it. I would still recommend you use a small Athlon/Duron/PIII cooler.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  2. Hey Super 7 user!

    Don't worry about the cooler: a K6-2+ produces much less heat than your current K6-2 550, so you current cooler will be even "overkill" for the K6-2+.

    I have a K6-3+ 550 (not overclocked) and I am using a Globalwin Fop32-1 cooler to cool it. This is totally overkill, so I turned its fan down to 2800rpm from its normal 4200rpm speed. Heck, the Fop32-1 could even cool my K6-3+ 550 WITHOUT the fan. With the fan at its current slow 2800rpm, my K6-3+ 550 NEVER goes above 37°C. Dunno in Faehrenheit, but 37°C is like a pretty hot summer, no more ;-) !

    So if the cooler of your K6-2 550 is rather noisy, you can slow down its fan for your future K6-2+ without any risk.

    I don't have any experience with your mobo, as mine is a Tyan Trinity S1598. But if you flashed the BIOS et al, I don't think you should worry.

    Furthermore: I don't think that you will need to up the voltage of the K6-2+: I once overclocked my K6-3+ to 600Mhz at stock 2.0Volts, and it would even do it at 1.8Volts!
    So there is a big chance that you will be able to make the K6-2+ run at 600Mhz at 1.9V or so. Currently my K6-3+ 550 is running at its stock speed of 550Mhz at 1.7 Volts, while it's supposed to run at 2.0V!

    SO: your current cooler should be more than good enough, but if you would like to get some overkill, I can definitely recommend my Globalwin FOP-32-1 .
    It has cooled my K6-2 400, then my K6-2 550, and now my K6-3+ 550.
    This cooler can cool an Athlon 1300, so...
    But first make sure if there's anough space around your cpu: the FOP32-1's base measures 70mmx62mm.
    You can find its specs at:
    GlobaWin also still sells specific Socket 7 coolers; you can check them out at the same website.

    I have a lot of experience with upgrading and tuning my Super 7 system, so if you have any more questions, let me know okay?
    BTW: the best video chip for a Super 7 system is the GeForce 2MX (but not the "200" version).

    Hope this helped you.
    Greetings from Belgium!
  3. I have a question. What performance difference is there between the K6-2 and the K6-2+ ? Is it an increased L2 cache size?

    Regardless, I heard it allows the computer to handle more RAM. What kind of FPS jump would one expect from using the "+" variety?
  4. The performance difference between the K6-2 and the K6-2+ not only depends upon the cpu, but also on the type of application you are running.
    eg. Office applications such as Word won't go noticeably faster on the + version,
    but most games - especially 3D games - will show a noticeable difference.
    When I replaced my K6-2 550 by a K6-3+ 550, I think that Quake 3 won roughly 10 frames per second. In more modern games though - like Unreal Tournament 2003 - I think that the difference won't be so big, as Socket 7 mobos in a whole are too slow for such games.

    So in general, I think that with the K6-2+ you can expect roughly a 20% increase in speed in games, compared to a K6-2 at the same clockspeed. Providing that your videocard can keep up of course: let's say that you need at least a TNT2. Also, some games depend more upon the amount and/or speed of the cache than others.

    Yes the L2 cache has been "increased":
    the K6-2+ has 64Kb L1 cache and 128Kb onboard L2 cache, whereas the K6-2 has NO onboard L2-cache.
    Let's assume that you have a K6-2 (64Kb L1) and a mobo with 1Mb of L2 cache. If you replace the K6-2 by the + version, you situation will be as follows: 64Kb L1 cache on chip, 128Kb L2 cache on chip and 1Mb L3 cache off chip.

    Will it allow your pc to handle more RAM? Yes and no.
    - As long as the cache on the mobo remains activated - which is best - you won't be able to add more RAM: as soon as you exceed the cacheable area of the mobo's cache, you will see a drop in performance. But that drop will be smaller with a K6-2+ chip then with the normal version.
    - If you decide to deactivate the mobo's cache, then suddenly the "cacheable area" will no longer be a limit and you could even install 2Gb of RAM. BUT: the performance will always be a little lower than with the mobo's cache activated.
    So I strongly suggest you leave the mobo's cache ACTIVATED, and don't install more RAM than its cacheable area.
    To know the cacheable area of the mobo's cache, look at this list:
    - 512Kb cache on mobo = 128Mb RAM cacheable area.
    - 1Mb cache on mobo = 256Mb RAM cacheable area.
    - 2Mb cahce on mobo = 512Mb RAM cacheable area.
    So I strongly suggest that you leave the mobo's cache activated and don't install more RAM than stated above.
    If you only have 512Kb chache on the mobo, and would like to install more than 128Mb anyway, I say try it, and see when performance is best: with or without the mobo's cache.
    But the performance in 3D games will almost always be lower than if you don't exceed the cacheable area of you mobo, and leave its cache activated.

    I hope that this answers all of your questions.
  5. thats the exact mother board i have been fiddling with trying to get more performance out of. that board is garbage.

    how do you shoot the devil in the back? what happens if you miss? -verbal
  6. Quote:
    <font color=blue>I hope that this answers all of your questions</font color=blue>

    Oh, it does. Thanks for the tutorial. I'd been curious about that stuff for some time.
  7. Thanks for the long detailed replies above.

    My onboard cache is 1024 MB. Are you suggesting that I will get better CPU performance if I pull out my 128 MB stick and 64 MB stick and drop my total ram down to 256 MB? I thought with W2K, the more the merrier...

    Also, what are your thoughts on running my core at 112mhz... My ram says it can support it, even my PC100 reads that it can go up to 125mhz. How true is the maxtor hd getting scrambled problem. Is 112mhz safe of not? Can old isa devices handle the increase in speed? Can my GeForce 2? Ahhhhhhhhhhh!

    And a side note, if I overclock an old K6-2 350 to 400mhz, what is the cheapest fan/heat-sink I can get awaw with?
  8. - In office applications and WinXP it may be better if you keep your current amount of RAM.
    But in 3D games, your pc should be faster with just 256Mb RAM, at least for the games which don't require more, but those which do need more than 256Mb don't exist yet, so your pc will never be able to play those anyway. They will need a 1Ghz+ cpu.

    To give you an example: When I upgraded my RAM to 512Mb - while I too have a 256Mb cacheable area - I lost more than 12FPS in Quake 3. So I quickly pulled out the extra 256 again.

    About your overclocking to 112Mhz. This is not extreme overclocking, so I THINK that you could give it a try. But don't forget that the PCI- and ISA-buses will run faster too. Some add-in cards don't like that, and may not work or get in trouble later... Do it at your own risk.
    Personally, I don't think the extra 12% are worth the risk.

    About overclocking your K6-2 350 to 400, I don't know which is the ceapest cooler.
    GlobalWin still sells socket7 coolers.
    Check them out at www.globalwinusa.com
    I use a Globalwin Fop32-1 which fits socket7 if there's enough space around your cpu (70mmx62mm), but that one is probably overkill for your K6-2. If you take that one, I suggest you slow down its rather noisy fan, or even replace the fan by the one you have now.

  9. the cache on the K6-2 was off-die.. tha cache on the k6-2+ and the k6-3 were on-die and that made them Substantially faster..95% that this is true...

    a K6-2 550 will lose anyday to a k6-2+ 500, from experience with my own last year
  10. I bet two 128 PC100 sticks would be better than one 256 PC133 stick… But If I am running Photoshop or a 500 page word document, I should use as much Ram as I can. Am I right here?

    I have already taken out my regular 550 CPU and put it in a computer that I am upgrading for a friend, whose motherboard will not handle the + CPU, and I also pulled out my extra Ram, so when I drop the 550+ in my computer (if my bios reads it, fingers crossed) I will not know how much of a gain is from the new CPU and how much is from the on-board cache being enabled.
    I had no idea that I had disabled it by adding more Ram.

    I sent my heatsink/fan with the regular 550, so I am left with the stock heatsink/fan that shipped with the K6-2 350 that was in his computer. The fan is not even the kind that plugs into the motherboard. From what I have read, the 550+ is easy to cool, so I am sure that the 350s stock heatsink/fan will do the job, but will it still be enough when I decide to overclock the CPU to 600mhz or 616mhz?

    And in your opinion, is the 550+ rock solid at 600mhz? An article on this board claimed that a 500+ was very solid at 600mhz, so is 616 worth a try? How much of a gain will I get from having my core speed at 112mhz? Is 112x5@560 better than 100x5.5@600? And I want a stable gaming system; I am not overclocking just to see if my computer will blow up.

    This is the fan I ordered a few days ago from NewEgg:
    Cooler Master CPU FAN DP5-6J31C-01 For AMD/Intel Cpu's--$9.00 plus $4.00 shipping.

    Should I overclock my 550+ with the stock fan from the K6-350 and use the fan I ordered to overclock the 350 to 400? And I do not see any way to not overclock the 350 to 400, for I will attempt it on the old ASUS board where 3 is my max multiplier unless I use the hidden 6x and get 6x66.6@400mhz. If the 350 is not a CTX, then my problems are solved. Do the K6-2s read 1.5 like 3.5 like the MMX 233s do?

    Sorry for all the questions, but you have provided tremendous insight so far my friend from Belgium... I have done a lot of research, but some specific answers are hard to find…

    To reign is worth ambition, though in Hell.
    Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heav'n.
    John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book II
  11. Okay, let's make our pencil wet...

    1. I too once read that 2x128Mb is better than 1x256.
    I never tested it. I think the difference is marginal.

    2. If you're running Photoshop, having as much RAM as possible looks like the thing to do. So is 256Mb enough? That depends on 2 things: which version are you using & what do you do with Photoshop? I say try it with 256Mb and see for yourself if it needs more RAM.
    A 500-page Word document? Hmm, are you a writer, or do you have that many girlfriends to write about in your diary? ;-)
    Even my thesis wasn't that long, so I can't speak out of experience. Under Win98, I think you won't need more than 256Mb, but if you use this f*?%king WinXP, then that's your problem. My motto: Don't use WinXP on a Socket7 system. It's like using a bazooka to kill a mosquito.

    3. I don't know about the compatibility of your mobo for this chip. I have a Tyan Trinity S1598, and they are compatible, providing you download BIOS version 10.6c . Gigabyte has a compatibility list on their website.
    Also, read Tom's article about the K6-2+ on this url:
    It says that most socket7 mobos which can deliver the 2Volts (or 2.1Volts max) will run the + series.
    I also remember that Tyan's Trinity S1590 WON'T accept the + cpus.

    4. About your mobos cache, you wrote: "I had no idea that I had disabled it by adding more Ram."
    By putting more RAM than its cacheable area you WON'T disable the mobos cache. It will never be disabled unless you disable it in the BIOS.
    So if you want to test whether enabling or disabling the mobos cache while using more than 256MB is best, you will have to en- or disable it yourself in the BIOS.

    5. I don't know if your K6-2 350 coller will be good enough to cool a K6-2+ or even a K6-3+. Check it out. I suggest that when you install the + chip for the first time, let it run at 450Mhz and check it temperature. Then move up its speed by 50Mhz at a time.
    With an "overkill" cooler you will be able to let it run at lower voltages and clock it higher.
    That's what I did: I bought a Globalwin FOP32-1 (which can cool an Athlon 1300) and slowed down its fan from 4800rpm (NOISY!)to 2800rpm (silent). Even with the fan running that slowly, this cooler can keep my K6-3+ 550 under 37°C - that's like a hot summer - and I can even let it run at 1.7V instead of its standard 2V !

    6. Most, but not all + chips do 600Mhz. Heat is not the problem here, because even at 600Mhz they don't heat up much. I think it's got to do with the way the core was designed. Most do 600Mhz, very few can do 640Mhz.
    So about your idea to overclock: try it. If you're lucky, you will get a + chips which does 650Mhz. But I suggest you use a better cooler then than your K6-2 350 thingy.
    Also, keep in mind that when overclocking the busspeed you are letting all of your ISA- and PCI cards run faster than their specified speed. This can cause damage which may even become apparent after a few weeks, and then it's too late...
    So I think that going from 600 to 616Mhz is not worth the risk. So won't see any noticeable improvement anyway.

    7. In theory, 112x5.5@560 should be better for most programs than 100x6@600. But again, I don't think you will see ANY noticeable difference, so I suggest you stick to the standard 100Mhz busspeed, and avoid the risk of damaging ISA- or PCI cards before you realise that they are being damaged.

    8. Overclocking the K6-2 350 to 400 should not pose any big problems, even with its stock cooler, provided that there is good air circulation inside the case. Try to lower its voltage with 0.1 or 0.2. It may help to keep it T° lower.
    That Coolermaster DP5-6J31C-01 shoudl be total "overkill" for both the K6-2 350 and K6-2+ 550@600.
    I suggest you slow down its fan downto 3500 or even 3000rpm to keep yourself from thinking that there is a helicopter taking off. ;-) Well, it's up to you to decide if you find its fan noisy or not. NewEgg's website states that it can even cool an Athlon 1600Mhz: that chip eats more than TWICE as much power as any K6-series cpu, so with this cooler you are SAFE.

    9. No, K6-2s don't see 1.5 as 3.5 like Pentium MMXs do. That is, as far as I know. Try it, and let me know.

    Let me know what you deside to do, ok? I'll see if I find anything wrong with it.

    Greetings from Brussels;
  12. OK. Before I start… success at 600mhz… It even reads it at boot-up as K6-2+ 600

    I have tested it with Neverwinter Nights and Dungeon Siege, and it does run a LOT better; but those two games do not Quake 3 make... not that I would know. I am using the 350s heatsink/fan because my helicopter landed and took off again because I was not there when the FedEx guy got here. And I wish I had waited because I had to pry that 350 cpu off of the heatsink and then sand it down. Whoever put that unit together sure used a lot of paste. I am still a little worried about sanding it off of the cpu.

    I have not run an intensive game for more than 20 minutes or so; I will try tonight. But I was on my computer this morning for about 2 hours using MS Word, and I felt the heatsink, and it was cool. But that is not really a test. But so far so good. I looked up the cooling unit you use last night, and just like my helicopter, the dimensions are off. Here is my concern after just prying that 350 off of the heatsink: if I place the cpu in the socket and close the lever and then add the helicopter, the odd dimensions cause it to hang over the lever. If I decide to install a new heatsink in a year and the cpu is stuck to it, there will be no way to remove it without taking a chance of damaging the socket… I’m I wrong about the dimensions, for I have only measured it. I am wondering if I should send the helicopter back and/or what it would cost to get a voltage regulator—I assume that is how you get the speed down.

    I thought of myself as a writer once, but then I got married, and I have not written a word since. But even on my longer documents, like my thesis, I am smart enough to divide it up into sections or chapters. And these day, when I do use Photoshop 6.0, I almost exclusively do it on my Athlon XP 1900+. So if my system will truly run 3D games better with 256 MB, I am happy. But when I built my Soyo SS7 system a few years back, I also built an almost identical computer for my mother. And she retired and obsessed with this history of the world outline that covers everything from major battles, evens, ideas, inventions, paradigm shifts all the way to climatic and geological changes (and interestingly enough, in Europe during the Roman period, it was a lot warmer than it is today, and during the Middle Ages it was a lot colder). But it is her 500 page outline with pics that she tries to save to a floppy and calls me to find out why her disk is full that prompted me to inquire about more Ram on her system, for I was planning on dropping a 256MB stick in her computer for Christmas.

    Here is a new question. It occurred to me last night that I have a Maxtor ata133 pci card in my computer; it has an IDE 1 & 2. I run my OS HD off of this card, a 20 Gig 5200 66. The card came with an 80gb hd that I use on my other computer. When I put it in a year ago, my notion was to make use of the full speed of the hd, even if it is only 66. My motherboard would only go 33. So, now that I am learning about overclocking, if this card is currently in a pci slot, is it actually going 66 or is it still sending data along the pci bus at 33? Is the card with 80 pin ribbons doing any good at all. This is also relevant because I just picked up a used Deskstar 30bg 7200 ata100 for $20.00 and I want to know how to optimize it on this SS7 system. How much will I benefit from buying another 80 pin ribbon and using the other IDE on the pci card? Will I get better performance with a 3D game if it is running off of the 7200 hd even though my os is on the 5200 hd? And in this situation, which hd should my page file be on? Does it increase performance when you set your page fimle to a constant like min 550 and max 550 so the cpu never has to think about adding space when it needs it? Ahhhhhhhh…

    To reign is worth ambition, though in Hell.
    Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heav'n.
    John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book II
  13. Also, my on-board 1024MB L2 cache should turn into an L3 cache with the K6-2+ 550mhz, but I cannot find an L3 cache anywhere with the utilities I am using...

    And get this... I had the demo powertweak running, but it expired two days before I got my new cpu installed... is there key stuck in the registry that I need to delete in order to install it again, or does the timer work by the date of the download...

    To reign is worth ambition, though in Hell.
    Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heav'n.
    John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book II
  14. I'm not sure, but maybe CPUID will show you your L3-cache. You can download it at www.download.com.

    Doesn't your bootup screen show you the amount of cache?
    Mine does, but I have to push the pauze-button to see it, otherwise it goes too fast to see it.

    Also, you could go into your BIOS and check the mobos cache. If it says "enabled", then it's working as L3-cache.

    I can't answer your registry question. I never touch the registry. I let System Mechanic from Iolo technologies clean it up for me. Check it out at iolo.com, it's a very nice piece of software! Registry cleaner, safe installer, boot-up manager to keep programs from starting up automatically if you don't want them to etc... a very fine piece of software.

  15. Woah! What a relief that the K6-2+ works. I remember when I first booted my K6-3+: shiver...shiver, come on, come on!

    If the heatsink stays really cool (like max lukewarm) while running Word, it will almost certainly be ok while playing games too.
    Like I said, the problem of the + series of chips is not heat, it's just that when designing the original K6, the engineers never had such high speeds in mind.
    With such a small heat production, one would think that a + chip should be able to do 800Mhz or so, but it's core simply won't do that, maybe unless you cryo-cool it.

    Don't worry if the FOP32-1 cooler would hang over the lever: if you use good quality paste like Artic Silver, it will never "glue" to the cpu... unless you accidentally buy the glue-version.
    And what's more: what are the chances that you will ever want to replace this K6-2+? One in a million? So even if it glues to the cpu, so what?

    Yes indeed, I use a voltage regulator to slow down the FOP32-1s fan. If you buy it, let it go below 3500rpm, otherwise it makes too much noise. With the FOP32-1, I even think you could simply remove its fan and the cooler would still not get hot, as long as you have more than just the PSUs fan to make air circulation.

    If you mom only uses her Socket7 system for internet and Word and stuff, I think you should not mind going over the cacheable area limit of her pc. Both the internet and Word are slower than a pc's RAM, so the cache would not improve much the speed of such applications anyway.
    Can your mom type faster than a RAM chip can follow? I doubt it. Hehe.
    So giving her 256Mb for Xmas sounds like a good iea to me. If she really uses such big files, an extra 256Mb should improve performance, even if you go over the cache limit.
    Cache + a lot of swap file acces is SLOWER than a lot of memory with no swap file acces, even if you go over the cache limit. At least, for office applications...

    About the PCI-card which drives your HDDs:
    It CAN work in ATA-66 mode, even though a PCI-slot only runs at 33Mhz.
    See, a PCI slot runs at 33 MEGAHERTZ.
    ATA-66 means 66 MEGABYTES per second.
    I am not 100% certain if my calculation below is 100% correct, but I do know that a PCI-slot has more bandwith than ATA-66 needs.
    As a PCI slot is 32 bits wide - that is 4 bytes - and runs at 33Mhz, you get the following bandwith:
    4Mbytes x 33.000.000Hz = 132.000.000 bytes per second.
    Now, some of the bandwidth is used for error checking and such, so we can substract some. Thus, the effective bandwith of a PCI slot will probably be around 120Mbytes per second.
    That is almost TWICE that bandwith your ATA-66 card needs.

    In short:
    - the speed of a PCI-slot is usually measured in MEGAHERTZ.
    - the speed of ATA-66 is usually measured in BANDWITH, that is 66Mb/second.
    Megahertz and bandwith are not the same thing.

    I don't know which of your HDDs is the fastest: not all 7200rpm drives are faster then 5400rpm drives, especially if the 7200rpm one is of an older generation.
    I replaced my 13.5Gb 7200rpm IBM drive by a Maxtor D540X, which has 40Gb and does 5400rpm. That Maxtor is quite faster, probably because it has a density of 40Gb per platter, while the IBM only has a density of 7ish GB per platter. So on 1 rotation, the 5400rpm drive reads almost 6 times more data than the 7200rpm drive. And it doesn't run 6 times slower, does it?
    Even with drives of the same generation, 7200rpm is not always faster than 5400rpm. eg I know from tests that Maxtors 5400rpm Fireball 3 is FASTER than Seagates 7200rpm Barracuda 4.

    But as your 5400rpm drive only has 20Gig, it is probably a "not so new" drive anymore. For that drive, your mobos UDMA-33 should be more than fast enough.
    So I suggest the following:
    - Put your 5400rpm drive on your mobos IDE1 in UDMA33 mode. Use an 80 ribbon cable for it, if you have one. But for this drive, I don't think this will make a noticeable difference.
    - Put your 7200rpm drive on the PCI-cards IDE1. Definitely use an 80ribbon cable for this drive, otherwise it will run in 33 mode instead of 66. So if you don't have any 80 ribbon cable, definitely buy one at least for this drive!
    That is, if this HD is ATA-66 compliant itself. If it's an older one and only "understands" ATA-33, your PCI-card will only run in ATA-33 mode anyway.

    So if the 5400rpm drive IS ATA-66 compliant - which I seriously doubt - and the 7200rpm drive is NOT, I suggest you do exactly the opposite of what I have described above.

    Hope this helps.
    Greetings from Belgium!
  16. I was a little worried that I asked too many questions on the above posts... I am glad I didn't cause you to continue surfing the forums. Yes, it was a good feeling to get it running. It is not even my best computer, but it still caused a high that only computer freaks can understand. I will pause on boot-up and look for a cache number. I pause every once in a while, but I am looking for something specific, and I have not notices a cache before.

    My pci ata133 card has 2 IDE channels, 0 and 1. My I bought the 5400 new in 2000 when I got the Soyo board and the 550 CPU. It says dma66 on it. The 7200 Deskstar has 2001 stamped on it, so it is new? I currently have only one 80-pin cable (in that pc), but it has an open slot for a slave. But I would think I would be a lot better off getting another 80-pin cable and putting the 7200 on the second IDE on the pci card. But with my system, are there bottlenecks that would make the move redundant?

    I do not want to install a new os on the 30gb 7200, for I will use it on the next computer I build. So for now, it will be a second hd on the SS7 system. But if I did, would I see an increase in performance with my os on the faster hd? Would games run any better? Also, would they run any better installed on the 7200 when my os is on the 5400? I do not know how all of that works.

    Dungeon Siege is a game that is freaking a lot of people out because with 2gh cpu, some people are only reading 30fps. And it plays awesome at 30fps, but try telling that to someone who spends $400 on a new graphics card. Everyone is trying to get the fps up. The game gets boring after a while, but for multiplayer, it is a lot of fun. I spent two solid weekends playing on my lan with an old buddy of mine last summer, and the K6-2 550 just couldn’t keep up in the latter parts of the game; the fps was locked at 6 because I think it cannot read below that. One of the forums suggested having the swap file on a different hd than the os and setting it to a constant rate so the computer does not have to add space incrementally. Now, if I have both DS and the windows swap file on the 7200 hd, say with a fixed size of 640mb, and my os on the 5400, would that work or do you think this is a gibberish?

    I currently have 17gb of 20 gb hd used. With w2k, will freeing up some of the drive and reinstalling the games on this new 7200 hd increase performance? How much free space does w2k need on its hd to be optimized. It is defragmented.

    Also, what is the advantage of running a + cpu at 1.8 or 1.9 like you are doing? My lowest voltage is 2.0, so it doesn't apply to me, but I am curious.

    I can’t wait to really test this computer with a multiplayer game on my lan. DS now runs a lot better, but now it stays in the range of 9-15 during combats and spikes near 30 when no monsters are about. But in DS, 10 fps is very playable.

    Then maybe I can focus on optimizing my Soyo KT333 Dragon ultra with an Athlon XP 1900+ and a Radeon 7500 64mb video card. But this system needs to be stable enough to use for intensive video editing.

    Cheers from the Olympic Peninsula.

    To reign is worth ambition, though in Hell.
    Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heav'n.
    John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book II
  17. Have you tested the cache limit on your + cpu's? Check out the thread on this URL...


    "1. The k6-3 and the + cpu's are not constrained by the -same- chipset, tag ram, and on-mobo L2 issues... "

    It goes on the say the 2+ has a limit of 512 mb and the 3+ has a limit of 1024 mb! It also suggests that this is regardless of the amount of onboard cache. I have been searching for an answer to this. Nothing I have found is conclusive. I have not even been able to find a graph or ratio that shows the relationship between cache and ram. My best guess from what I have read and the numbers I have seen posted is that there a 4 to one ratio of kb to mb; you can have 1/4 the amount of mb ram that you have of kb cache, thus 1024 kb cache can only handle 256mb of ram. Is there a formula? The pentiom II and above work differently, or so I just read... Do the k6-x+ cpu's also work differently? Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

    <font color=red><b>To reign is worth ambition though in Hell.
    Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heav'n.</b></font color=red>
    John Milton, <i>Paradise Lost[/], Book II, 262-263
  18. The Socket 7 external cache system does not limit the amount of RAM you can install, but once you go over its "cacheable area" limit, performance will drop.
    Look at the following table:
    - 512Kb mobo cache = 128Mb RAM
    - 1Mb mobo cache = 256MB RAM
    - 2Mb mobo cahce = 512Mb RAM
    The amounts of RAM are the limit of what you can install without geting a performance hit.

    About the K6+ series: As far as I know their on-chip L2-cache is NOT limited by this "cacheable area thing". But performance will still drop a little if you go over the MOBO's cache limit. But if you go over the mobo's cache limit, I do not know whether leaving it enabled or disabing it is the best thing to do if you have a +chip.
    Try both settings and see.

  19. I think you should install your OS on the 5400rpm drive and install your games on the 7200rpm drive.
    Installing your OS on the 7200rpm drive will only increase its boot-up speed a little, for the rest this would not really speed up anything.
    I am not a fan of 7200rpm drives: they are a little less reliable (so put your important files on the 5400rpm), they are a lot more noisy (especially compared to the latest 5400rpm drives, which are inaudible) and they are not always faster. eg Maxtor's Fireball 3 5400rpm is FASTER than the Seagate Barracuda 4 7200rpm.
    Also, games will NOT be faster on a 7200rpm drive, only they will load faster. Only if you have not enough memory and the game needs to do a lot of swapping, then a 7200rpm may be interesting, but you will still have to wait you know. Even on a 15000rpm SCSI-drive you will still have to wait.

    So install you OS on the 5400rpm drive and connect it to the PCI IDE card, as it is an ATA-66 drive.
    I don't know if your 7200rpm drive is an ATA-66 drive. I suggest you go to the website of the manufacturer and find out. If it's not, you can connect it to your mobos IDE without any loss in speed, because no 7200rpm drive does 33Mb/second. Actually, ATA-66 and above only really increase the speed at which data is written to or read from the drives cache buffer. So if your 7200 drive is not ATA-66 compliant, putting it on your ATA-66 card will not increase its speed.

    "It is not even my best computer, but it still caused a high that only computer freaks can understand. "
    When people ask me what I find interesting about putting my head in a PC, I say this: "Some men get a kick by tuning cars or motorcycles, taking them apart only to put them together again. Some women get a kick by standing in front of a mirror for hours, painting their face. Which is the stupidest thing to do?"
    Haha! ;-)
    Some people even collect tea-bags, empty bottles, postal stamps and so on...

    I don't have Dungeon siege, so I can't help you with that game. I currently play Thief (great game!) and Dark Colony, an older strategy game that even runs on a fast 486. I don't really care about the 3D-quality et al, my imagination fills the gaps in video quality. A book can be better than a movie, although the video quality of a book is non-existent.

    Running a cpu at a lower voltage like I do is only interesting to lower heat dissipation. For the rest it doesn't improve anything exept maybe the lifetime of the chip. But due to their low heat dissapation, I think that ANY +chip which is cooled enough could easily work for 15 years or so.

    As long as W2K has roughly 1Gb of free space, everything is ok. I even ran W2K with just 300Mb of free space. Everything was ok, but it did run slower. So I think that roughly 600Mb of free space is enough for W2K.

    Greeting from Belgium;
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