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Earthquake City BBS

Running from January 1, 1995 until December 31, 2006.

Last updated by Steven Libis & Associates on 03/12/2001


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I received my IDT WinChip already installed on the motherboard (BioStar). I liked the information printed on the chip, which included the voltage (3.52), bus clock speed (66mhz), CPU speed (200mhz) as well as the need for a CPU fan.

The motherboard came with the jumpers already configured for the CPU. The motherboard manual came with configuration information for Intel, Cyrix and AMD. The manual did not mention the WinChip, but it uses the same pin configuration as the 200mhz Intel, Cyrix and AMD chips.

The CPU is called the WinChip. It is specifically optimized for desktop and mobile PC configurations. However, since my current Novell NetWare File Server is only a 486-120, I was interested in seeing what kind of performance increase would be noticable. Both internally for my self and the applications I run, as well as the 4 line BBS that uses the file server as well.

I started off by buying all new parts from the local computer shop. PCI video card, PCI network card, PCI SCSI card, SCSI hard drive (4gig), case, SDRAM (64mb), and floppy drive. I will continue to use the old tape backup software and hardware. The only two differences are:
- the old server used 72 pin SIMMs and the new server has 168 pin DIMMs
- the old server had two 2 gig drives rather than one 4 gig drive

Everything plugged in easily, and it powered up with no problems.

Instead of using benchmark speed testing software to assess its performance, I decided to scrutinize its real world throughput under various conditions.

Would anyone notice a faster motherboard on the file server, when they are dialing in over a 33,600 modem (in a 486-66 machine), and then connection to the network over a 10mbit 10base-T network card?

YES! And here is what one unsolicited actual user said in a message to the sysop:

"My impression is that the system (BBS) is running about 4 times as fast as it was, for any sort of file operation: search, copy, extract my messages for mail download, compress, uncompress, anything like that. I got enough messages in conf.100 (internet e-mail) to get a decent comparison. Then I did a file search for "doom", cuz I knew that would cough up a bunch, mostly big ones. Viewed one that was a couple megs -- a good chunk to extract. Newfiles list -- no waiting." K.V.Moffet

That is my impression as well. Everything run on the file server with this WinChip/BioStar engine was noticeably faster. I think this is a cost effective solution when you are looking to upgrade a motherboard / CPU.

Based on my real world useage, for my hard earned e-cash, this WinChip processor based BioStar motherboard provides the current best performance and value for the pentium class dollar.

Steven Libis
co-host "Computers By Candle Light"
Sysop, Earthquake City BBS

WinChip available from:
Integrated Device Technology, Inc.
Centaur Technology, Inc.
Voice: (800) 345-7015
  Fax: (408) 492-8674
  Web: IDT / Centaur

Single Unit Distributors:
        MA LABS (408) 941-0808
        Wintek  (510) 770-9239

Hundreds of Units Distributors:
        Hamilton - Hallmark (800) 778-2668
        Wyle  (800) 582-WYLE or (800) 582-9953

other vendors selling WinChips

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Last updated by Steven Libis & Associates on 03/12/2001