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Thread: semi-virgin PTP 225 upgrade

  1. #1
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    Hi Yawl -

    We've been reading the forums for the past two weeks to glean information and clarify facts as we gear up for our long-awaited upgrade.

    What we started with was the stock PTP 225 (MOBO number P/N 5900-999-03 if that's it? it was shipped to us in Nov of 96) with the 2G IBM hard drive, NEC CD-Rom, ATI TT vid card, 32 MB RAM (to which we added another 32), etc.

    What we've done so far is upgrade to System 9.0, added 128 MB RAM, installed a Miles 2 and added a 9.1 Cheetah onto that card, and replaced the video card with an XclaimVR128. We also purchased, but haven't yet installed a Plextor CD-RW. The hardware was all purchased from MacGurus, plus the driver software and Toast.

    What we want to do is add another 128 MB RAM and interleave it all, add another hard drive, and upgrade the CPU (finally!!). Any questions we might have had about the RAM have been thoroughly answered elsewhere in the forums. We need help and advice on the CPU and hard drive, though.

    Hard drive first. We had originally planned to get a second 9.1 Cheetah and RAID it when we did the CPU upgrade (which is now) but now the X15's exist, and someone (Kaye or Teri, I think) mentioned that having 1 X15 is like having 2 9.1 Cheetahs in RAID. We also understand that adding a second Miles 2 will allow 2X in both read and write. So the question now would be which is the better option - to go ahead and get a second 9.1 Cheetah and Miles 2 card, or to get an X15 now and use that as the primary working disk, with the existing 9.1 Cheeetah as backup and/or applications/startup disk? The second option would leave the door open to buy a second X15 and Miles 2 later, and RAIDing the two X15's while using the 9.1 Cheetah for backup/startup (modeled loosely on Teri's ideal setup)

    Since an X15 costs about the same as a Miles 2 and a 9.1 Cheetah together,I guess we could go either way. I am wondering if the one X15 sharing a single Miles 2 with the 9.1 Cheetah will match the performance (both read and write) as a RAID of 2 9.1 Cheetahs on 2 Miles 2 cards? The future upgrade path with the X15 is obviously better, but the question of overkill comes up.

    This leads us to the intended-usage question... we will eventually be using the machine for graphics apps (Photoshop, Infini-D, which we have, or another 3D app in the future, maybe Flash also) to create our own animations, and we intend to do a bit of video capture and editing with the XclaimVR128 card, maybe capture some backgrounds to use with the animations, etc. Basically, we want a workhorse machine that will last for several more years. Speed is good, though I don't know if we need "blazing" by your standards.

    If a RAID of two 9.1 Cheetahs will give us enough speed and storage to comfortably do this, then we will go that way. But we're not misers - we don't want to just get by; we want plenty of speed, throughput, and storage.

    The CPU upgrade is another whole issue, and several trips through the posts here has still not completely clarified it for me. From what I understand (which may be completely off-base), I can go with the G3 500 Carrier right now and not have any problems (or can someone tell me what the problems are?), or go with a G4 on a CarrierMPe and run into the 6-slot problem. Don't know if I understood correctly, but I thought someone said that dual G4's on CarrierMPe plus Velocity solved the 6-slot problem? Then I heard that 16x carriers are supposed to be coming out late this year? Then today I ran across a new post where (sorry, forget whose post) someone said G3 500 is basically EOL (end of line, right?) for the PTP. So we are reasonably lost on this topic, and are hoping that one of you really together and knowledgeable folk wouldn't mind summing up the current options for a G3/G4 processor upgrade for the PTP - the information I found was scattered across many forum topics and trying to piece it all together into a coherent picture is making my brain hurt - even a trip to the XLR8 site didn't help that much.

    So there we are. Also, what I've described above is the total extent of my experience with upgrading computers.

    I am a big fan of this forum - I have never come across such helpful, concise information discussed by friendlier or more knowledgeable people in any subject anywhere. Looking forward to getting this ironed out a bit with your help.

    Many thanks,
    Thad
    (Wordy writer, hope I didn't put you all to sleep - lame user name if there ever was one)

  2. #2
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    One thing to consider in your study is that all drives in a RAID array should be alike; same madel number and even same firmware version. I don't know how long you've had the 9 GB x10 Cheetah, but matching it could be a problem now. I have one (ST39204LW, firmware 0006) running as a single drive on a Miles 2. It gets sustained transfer rates of around 34 MB/sec. I've never striped two of them, but someone here has and will report the figures.

    There is no question that the X15s are faster, and at 18 GB larger. I should think that for PhotoShop work, 2 x 18 GB would be better than 2 x 9 GB.

    I have two X15's and two Miles U2W cards in a PTP 200 (with an XLR8 500 MHz G3).
    A single X15 gives about 38 MB/sec. Two X15s running of one Miles 2 card gives 67 MB/s sustained reads and 38 MB/s sustained writes. Add a second Miless 2 card (dual channel) and the sustained rates go to 77/72.

    The G3 vs G4 upgrade for the PTP has no end in sight right now. I, personally would rather have a fully functional 500 MHz G3 than a G4, but I don't do PhotoShop.

  3. #3
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    Adding a second Miles and a 9 GB Cheetha striped with the excisting one in raid 0 will give you the best bang for the buck if you still can get an identical one as Louie says. It will almost double your sus'd writes, which can't be reached with a single x15. It'll make you photoshop files fly.
    Greetings T.

  4. #4
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    Thad,

    I'm with Louie and Ton, and it sounds as if you have done your homework.

    Simplest and most inexpensive upgrades (with no cautions):
    1. MACh G3 466MHz Carrier, 1MB L2 @ 233Mhz $369.99 ea. This is an excellent value and can usually be overclocked to 480/240 reliably by Louie.
    OR
    1a.MACh G3 500MHz Carrier, 1MB L2 @ 250MHz $459.99 ea, both are here http://www.macgurus.com/shoppingcart...boards2cz.html
    2. Your 9.1GB 10k Cheetah, that was an ST39204LW? Now replaced by the ST39205LW. I would not plan on raiding that mixture. It would probably work but is not recommended. So add an X15 to the existing Miles2, ST318451LW, Seagate Cheetah 18.35GB 15k Ultra160 4MB $369.99 ea. here http://www.macgurus.com/shoppingcart...dseagates.html

    Stepping up (with cautions):
    3. Single MACh G4 450MHz CarrierMPe, 1MB L2 @ 225MHz $499.99 ea. Now the caution taken from here http://www.macgurus.com/shoppingcart...boards2cz.html . "CarrierMPe G4 for all the above machines except PowerCurve, PowerTower, PowerTower Pro, PowerCenter and PowerCenter Pro. CarrierMPe is not compatible with these machines. CarrierMPe, however, with G3, is now compatible with PowerBase." Louie and I have been testing CarrierMPe on our PTPs but with a G3-500 ZIF (that is all we presonally have, no G4). Results to date with that combo are not compatible. XLR8 is working on it. It is possible that CarrierMPe may work with a G4 in a PTP, I don't know, but the quote above says no.
    3a.I personally would go with #1a above, for utmost reliability at this point in time. The #3 above would put you in the experimentation category.
    4. Get two X15s and another Miles2. Now the caution. Currrently, adding another Miles2 with one X15 on each Miles2 is a significant speed up when stripe raiding the two (RAID 0), particularly in sustained writes, but there is some kind of bug in the OS that does not fully flush the cache and causes hangs during large file size I/O. The only way to solve this problem is to enable Write-through in the XLR8 control panel. Write-through, when enabled, causes I/O (disk throughput) to go thru main memory rather than directly to the G3/G4 backside cache, if I recall correctly. So Write-through solves the large file size I/O problem but also carries a penalty, about 3% in CPU performance, 3% in FPU, 7% in graphics, 7% in publishing graphics, for a total of 20% hit (if you test with Norton System Info which combines the scores for an overall result). Initio, though they are not the culprit in this problem, I have experienced the same problem with dual ATTO boards, is actively working for a solution. My recommendation would be #2 above, a single X15 added to you existing Miles2, unless your need for disk speed outweighs your needs in the other areas where there would be a performance penalty currently. You could always add another Miles2 later. If you do plan on that, get two X15s now and stripe raid them on your existing Miles2. Your existing 10k Cheetah will coexist with the X15s, but you will probably need to go with Granite LVD cabling and LVD terminator with the three drives. k

  5. #5
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    okeydokey,
    Yes, our Cheetah is indeed a ST39204LW, so it looks like we would have to find a used one of those to RAID with ours. It appears we have 3 options:

    1. Find another ST39204LW somewhere (want to sell yours, Louie?) and buy a second Miles 2 and RAID those properly.

    2. Buy a single X15 and forget about RAIDing.

    3. Buy two X15's plus Granite cabling, RAID those off a single Miles2.

    #1 would, as Ton puts it, give us the most bang for the buck, and is our original idea when we bought the ST39204LW last year. However, it hinges upon finding used goods.
    #2 would be a middle-ground solution - it would give us more storage space which might be more important given our intended purpose of making animations than the speed of #1. Again, it might be the write speed that becomes important during rendering.
    #3 would give us an approximation of the machine Terri described as the "ultimate" system for an old PTP starting from scratch. Quite costly, but it might pay off in the end. Decisions, decisions.

    A couple of questions - if we go with #3, should we keep an eye out for another ST39204LW anyway, the idea being if we find one, to get another Miles 2, and RAID like to like across two boards (does having two RAIDs make any sense?)? Also, does anyone have an idea about the outlook for a bug fix for the OS (2 X15 on 2 Miles2) in the future?

    What do you guys think? We're estimating the cost of #3 to be around $900 for 2 X15's plus the Granite cables/terminators. Does anyone have or know of an st39204LW that's available? We checked out the for sale site here but didn't find one.

    Thanks,
    Thad

    ps we still have numerous questions about the CPU and also about cooling fans, will get in touch later regarding those

  6. #6
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    ST39204LW available here http://www.hypermicro.com/store/hard_drives.htm if that narrows your choices. I do know that the bug necessitating enabling Write-thru was being worked on as late as friday. k

  7. #7
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    cool, thanks Kaye. Now that we know the st39204LW is available new, we decided we want to go with that as tempting as 2 X15's are - we realized it will be at least a year before we are pushing the limits of the 10x setup, so we will save our pennies for a future upgrade instead of going for broke now.

    So the hard drive solution will be to purchase a second Miles 2, and RAID the two identical drives on 2 Miles 2's. Louie mentioned in his first reply that someone over in Guruland has striped two of the st39204LW drives, we're looking forward to seeing the numbers on that.

    A few questions about RAIDing - all we need to RAID is the second identical hard drive and a second Miles2 and optional upgrade to Granite cables, right? Are we missing anything? Also, since we already have SoftRaid 2.2.1 (came with the first Miles2) - can we buy the second Miles2 without the software?

    The next question we have is about the fans - we have been reading about them on another thread here, and we're not clear if there is an overlap in the purpose of the Ultimate Coolers and Silencer fans (which we assume will replace the existing PTP fans plus one more in place of the speaker). If we add 3 Silencers, is there any need for Ultimate Coolers on each hard drive? If we got two Ultimate Coolers, would we need the Silencers? We are kinda assuming that Ultimate Coolers cool just the hard drives, so we will want to replace the existing PTP fans whether we get Ulitmates or not. Just how many fans are neccessary here anyway? We know one can never be too cool, but where does severe overkill kick in?

    We are going to wait on the CPU until we have the RAID in place and System 9.1 installed and running right, (plus the RAM and new fans) so we'll be examining the options in two weeks or so, hopefully there will be some new information on the G4 at that time.

    Thanks for the continued input
    Thad

  8. #8
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    A few questions about RAIDing - all we need to RAID is the second identical hard drive and a second Miles2 and optional upgrade to Granite cables, right? Are we missing anything?
    Well, you do not NEED a second MilesU2 to RAID (or stripe), but that is the faster way to go. Also keep in mind that the MilesU2 card somes with some great quality 4 plug TWISTED-PAIR terminated cable. The twisting (not as good as the GRANITE TWISTED PAIR) helps keep the signals closer to tolerance and also helps reject any RF-noise. Its kinda like RJ-45 twisted pair.

    I'm fairly sure you will have to reformat the old drive - unless you get two new ones SoftRAID is fairly easy to figure out... its a MAC APP!-) You can also parition it out if you want (for boot, apps, data, etc...) depending on your needs and setup. SR should see all the SCSI drives connected to all the buses and allow to to strip (or mirror) to any one. I do not think you NEED identical drives - at least SR will let you strip to between just about any two (or more) drives. I've never done this though and I always try to buy my drives in matched pairs for this very reason.

    Also, since we already have SoftRaid 2.2.1 (came with the first Miles2) - can we buy the second Miles2 without the software?
    From what I understand SoftRAID is a free bundle - so I guess there wouldnt be any discount for it. Besides the MSRP is about $220 anyway (last I checked)... it would be cool if we could get a $150 discount by NOT getting SR with our MilesU2

    Also the current version is 2.2.2 - it should work fine upto 9.1. I think it kinda works on 10/X, but then with a PTPro I'm sure thats not an issue.

    I think that those 18G drives are fairly small by todays (and I do mean TODAY) standards. The x15 cheetahs are the ultimate for speed and you can RAID them to get a larger single volume. I would probably get one or two matched 9G 10K cheetahs and stick with the single MilesU2W. You may even want to get a single 18G 15K or a 36GB 10K cheetah for backup, boot, etc.. I there there was just a slight revision to the 10K cheetah line (noticed when I bought my 36G a few weeks ago) so I'm not sure what they have in stock now. Anyway - looks like you are going to be doing some high end work. 2 hours of MPEG2 video is about 8GB -so 18GB will only hold 2 videos Of course uncompressed video can take up much more space, but you know your HD needs better than I. Of course running DUAL scsi cards is one of the GREAT features of your dual PCI architecture. I think you can get sustained writes of over 80MB/s, which strangely (maybe not?) is faster than a B&WG3 or YIKESG4.

    I have 3 XLR8 G3 upgrades (2 G3/466s) and they are great. If XLR8 ever gets the 6-slot G4 issue fixed and then the Power Computing G4 issues, you could always upgrade to a G4 later...


    I think the Ulimate coolers are desiged for standard 1/3 height 3.5" drives to be mounted in a CD bay (2/3 height- 5.25" bay). They have a massive blue annodized heatsink and two quality (and quiet) fans. I think they also come with a dust screen. So if you are planning to mount them in one of our 5.25" bays - this is the COOLER FOR YOU. The PTPro has
    1) PowerSupply fan
    1) Case fan
    1) CPU fan
    I have EVERY BAY and SLOT filled on my PTProG3/500. I did have a quiet running PCI fan when I had a free slot. This worked well with my hot running V5/5K. The case/CPU temp has gone up without it.

    The two side mounting bays do not offer any space for any fans that I know of. The lower 3.5" bays (above the floppy) do offer space for a low porfile fan. This fan attaches to the bottom of a drive and only sticks out about ~1/8 to 1/4" It goes over the SCSIdrive logicboard. They are usually fairly quiet, but sometimes they can click (hit stuff) and cause way to much noise.

    There are also fans (not sure if gurus still carries these) that mount on the front of a 5.25" (maybe even 3.5"?) slot. Sometimes they hold the HD as well. They cool fairly well but do not offer a heatsink, although a heatsink is not necessary and you can occasionally stuff a few more drives in the case.

    One word about fans - make sure you get the QUIETEST fans you can. This doesnt mean sacrificing cooling ability or anything else. My PTPro is very loud when compaired to my B&WG3 (with 1-10K 36GB Cheetah, 2 IDE/ATA drives and 2 video cards). Also I did notice a difference between the PCI slot fan and the QUIET PCI slot fan - even on the PTPro. Of course my setup is in my sleeping quarters soo Its gotta be quiet.

    The G3 will probably help your RAID run a bit faster. Overclocking is never guaranteed, but I've been 2 for 2 in getting the 466Mhz to 500 reliably OVER-TIME. I think many can go to 550 (on a 100MHz bus) but that could be a little much it on a hot summer day. I think the main issues facing these old Macs is that RAM is so expensive for them. I'm not sure if this is your ONLY machine and how mission critical it is, but you should be able to upgrade the drives and cards one weekend and then the CPU the next. You could probably even do both at once (over a two day period) but its nice to lay back once and a while.

    gl, hth, ymmv

  9. #9
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    weirdly, there are several posters here who are running CarrierMPe with G4 in the PTP just fine.

    XLR8 probably lists the PTP as compatible with the G4.....we moved it to the incompatible column based on the issues we have encountered with CarrierMPe and G3 ZIF. Maybe overkill.

    the way I see it, you have no idea what someone may want to do in the future. They may want to run a G3 today, and install a G4 ZIF later. Or vice versa.

    part of the feature set that makes the Carrier paradigm interesting is the modularity, and the various options feasible as a result.

  10. #10
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    Right, we do not NEED the second Miles2 or Granite cables. We want the second Miles2 to get the faster writes, which I am sure will be sweet in rendering out 3D files, etc. We are curious about Granite cables - Kaye mentioned a scenario with two X15's and a 9.1 Cheetah on a single Miles2 where it would make sense to go with Granite. We are planning to go with the twisted pair that comes with the Miles2 for this upgrade, and consider going to Granite if we upgrade again in the future, adding another pair of hard drives or something, unless someone thinks Granite cables would be a good investment now.

    We aren't doing professional level work on this computer at this time - the foreseeable future holds stuff like 2-minute animated or multimedia shorts, editing home movies, modeling and animating in 3D, animating in 2D. Nothing that is going to take up a great deal of space all at once, and I expect we can use the CD-RW to backup and/or to store project work, and so keep the RAID fairly clean. We also have an iMac, which is pretty much our 5yo's game machine. It has come in handy in the past as a backup (we have them connected via ethernet) when we've wiped the PTP clean and rebuilt from ground up.

    We're also looking into a Firewire/USB PCI card - has anyone tried these out? We're considering either the RATOC combo card http://www.macgurus.com/shoppingcart...cgi?ratoc.html
    or the XLR8 cards - separate for Firewire and USB http://www.macgurus.com/shoppingcart...hardware.html. (how did you guys make those nice, clickable links show up?)

    So, back to fans, it makes sense to replace all 3 of the existing PTP fans now, right? Do Ultimate Coolers cool anything but the hard drive that is nested in them? Is further case cooling needed in addition to the 3 stock fans?

    We also really would like to go with the G4, but it's imperative that the 6 slot issue be fixed. Our dream is to go with multiprocessing in the future, hopefully dual G4's. Pendragon - you mentioned having 3 G3's - not all in one machine? Can you multiprocess with G3's? We're planning to get the RAM, Miles2/Cheetah setup, CD-RW in the machine and running properly, then make a decision on the CPU, so that gives us a little time to check things out, maybe find out what the magic words are that the aforementioned posters who are running G4/MPe in PTP chanted at startup.

  11. #11
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    oh, I see. those nice, clickable links show up automatically. Silly me.

  12. #12
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    So, we ordered a ST39204LW Cheetah from Hypermicro, and are getting ready to place an order with MacGurus, thought this would be a good time to sum up the outlook so far, along with describing the setup as we envision it after this round.

    pci slots:
    1) Miles2 (purchased Spring '00 from MacGurus)
    2)MACHFire PCI Firewire card (to be purchased $116 from MacGurus)
    3)empty (possibly put original video card here for 2-monitor support)
    4)Miles2 (to be purchased $199 from MacGurus)
    5)XLR8 Dualport USB PCI Adapter (to be purchased $45 from MacGurus-performance package)
    6)ATI Xclaim VR128 vid card (purchased Spring '00 from MacGurus)

    Comments on this setup? I don't foresee us needing any other sort of PCI card, so we're going with separate Firewire and USB cards from XLR8 instead of the combo card.

    memory:
    A1) 128 MB (purchased Spring '00 from MacGurus)
    B1) 128 MB (to be purchased $199 from MacGurus, to interleave with A1)
    A2) 32 MB (original)
    B2) 32 MB (purchased fall '98 locally - interleaves with A2)

    diagnostics show that A2 and B2 are interleaving successfully, so I don't foresee any problems here.

    Apple Profiler gave us this info for devices and volumes:
    SCSI Bus 0 - ID=3 CD-ROM (original) ID=4 IBM hard drive (original)
    SCSI Bus 2 - ID=0 9.1G 10X Cheetah ST39204LW

    Presumably, the second Miles2 will give us a third SCSI bus, the second Cheetah will be on that.

    Rounding out our shopping list will be fans/cooling devices, and perhaps a battery and mounting bracket stuff. CPU upgrade will be ordered in near future.

    Does anyone have any comments on the best placement for the two Cheetahs? We could put them in Ultimate Coolers in front, or with Ultrathin Heat Exhausters in the RAID rack, or what are the other options for mounting them without a special cooler, using a bezel fan to increase the overall internal circulation or something like that?

    Currently, the original IBM 2G HD is mounted up front somewhere below the CD-ROM, both are hooked to the original SCSI cable. The existing Cheetah is in the RAID rack, hooked up by itself to the Miles2. We are probably going to garage the IBM for a while, due to it powering up when it's only supposed to be for backup. I suppose a SCSI ID change would fix that, but the whole ID concept is a little daunting at this time, so we're just going to pull it to simplify the project for now. It's a noisy little bastard anyway. Ditto with the old CD-ROM, we'll be installing the Plextor in its place.

    Last, and very likely least, we'll be replacing the 3 internal fans with Silencers. Anyway, I think we'll go bug the Guru sales folk for a while.

    -Thad

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    Most of us with multiple Cheetahs have them in Ultimate Coolers mounted in the front, 5.25" bays below the CD player.

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    Wordy,

    There is a really simmple way to mount your two hard drives (your 18XL and your new X15). Hook them up to your existing Miles U2W, use your existing twisted pair cable (supplied by Initio) and place both of the hard drives in your RAID rack.

    Then install your new X15 where your old IBM harddrive used to be. It will be easier to route your cables this way. If you really want some hassle free cooling, buy a 425 watt UltraCool ATX powersupply from PC Power & Cooling (about $180).

    I am running this exact set up in my G3 500 PTP, plus two more IBM 7200RPM HDs for back up storage (all internal). I have never had any type of heat related problems...runs cool...

    Next week she goes into service as a FMP server for my office. Instead of booting off of RAID 0, she'll be booting off RAID 1 :-(, with her dual X15s off the dual Miles U2Ws :-)....

    Get the G3 466 Carrier/ZIF... FIRST, then stripe your X15s...

    Mark

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    I also have an 18 GB Fast 20 Barracuda in the 3.5" bay between the floppy and the Zip and a 10k Cheetah in the RAID rack with an UltraThin Heat Exhauster on it.

  16. #16
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    First I would like to thank everyone for all their help, advise, options etc... and for repeating themselves, yet again, on this forum. We have been reading many of the archived posts and because most of it is over our heads it has been very helpful having the same type of questions answered specifically for our particular needs and set-up. We do hope to get up to speed in jargon as well as working knowledge/understanding as we get our 'hands dirty' so to speak it has been a real luxury having a machine that has not demanded much from us for the first 4 to 5 years of owning it, and it is particularly nice having so much
    room in which we can now grow. We are in debt to the people here and the vast knowledge y'all make available for us neophyte do-it-yourselfers.

    So after this 2nd upgrade venture our PTP 225 will have:

    CPU: original 604e w/ hopes of upgrading to a G4 MPe in the very near future and eventual dual G4's. we really want to set up for multiprocessing. G3 is still a very real possiblity.
    HD: (2) 9.1G 10k cheetahs (ST39204LW) in raid 0 on (2) Miles2, we still have the original 2G IBM but haven't decided whether or not to install it or to give it a vacation.
    RAM: 320 mb (2) 32's & (2) 128's
    CD-ROM: 12/4/32 PlexWriter CD-RW - replaces the original NEC CD-ROM
    PCI: 1) Miles2
    2) empty
    3) empty
    4) Miles2
    5) USB
    6) ATI Xclaim VR 128 - replaces the original IMS twin turbo
    Cooling: 4 silencer aux fans - to replace the 3 original fans and a 4th to take the place of the small factory speaker in front of the PCI slots, and 2 Ultimate Coolers, for the 2 cheetahs which will be placed up the front in the bottom (2) 5.25 bays.

    This leaves still available: the raid rack, (3) bays up front (1 - 5.25 and 2 - 3.5), (2) PCI slots, and (4) dimm slots. So we still have lots of room for future upgrades, probably in a year or so after we recover a bit from the nearing $1500 (including the soon to be purchased CPU upgrade) out put for this upgrade venture. The x15's sound great but we aren't in dire need of that much speed or storage so given that things change so fast we'll wait and see what's hot when we out grow this set-up

    We are hoping to upgrade the CPU by the end of this month. But honestly we are still confused over the G3 & G4/PTP issues and will go back and run searches and re-read posts to try and figure out the problems and if/how they will effect us and what we ultimately want. The reason we are not jumping on the G3 is because, as we understand it, in a PTP there are problems with the MPe so you can't multiprocess and we're not ready to shelf that dream. But as I said we're still confused on these points. We're hoping that this next batch of G4 will have the 6 slot PCI problem fixed.

    Thanks again,
    Thad

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    the "six slot problem," as you describe it, is not "fixable," when you realize it is caused by an errata in the current design of the G4 processor itself.

    it can be worked around with the Velocity upgrade due to the amount of logic on that board, but Velocity has not been certified compatible with the PTP at this time, and it is quite possible it will not be. The PTP presents unique issues which are not present in other Tsunami variants, and it is necessary to tread lightly where that particular machine is concerned. At this time, the single G4 CarrierMPe works fine--with the caveat that no bus mastering cards can be used in the lower three slots. That's it.

    I myself would not hold my breath waiting for an SMP solution which will be compatible with the PTP. Considering the issues encountered with the XLR8 G3 on the CarrierMPe in that machine, it's amazing that the CarrierMPe works with XLR8 G4 ZIF at all.


    [This message has been edited by magician (edited 03 May 2001).]

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    Austin, TX USA
    Posts
    24

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    Ok, so we've finally made the decision regarding the CPU and it appears that our long contemplation worked in our favor We spent the last 2 day scouring this forum and the XLR8 site regarding the pros and cons of the G3's and G4's and we are going w/ the CPU we wanted to get last year, which is the MACh G3 500MHz Carrier, 1MB L2 @ 250MHz, now selling for $399.99

    So our final set-up for our PTP 225 (MoBo# P/N 5900-999-03 built in Oct '96) is:

    CPU: MACh G3 500MHz Carrier, 1MB L2 @ 250MHz
    HD: (2) 9.1G 10k cheetahs (ST39204LW) in RAID 0 on (2) Miles2 and the original 2G IBM in a 3.5 bay above the floppy.
    RAM: 320 mb (2) 32's & (2) 128's
    CD-ROM: 12/4/32 PlexWriter CD-RW - replacing the original NEC CD-ROM
    PCI:
    $A1) Miles2
    $B1) empty
    $C1) empty
    $D2) Miles2
    $E2) XLR8 USB
    $F2) ATI Xclaim VR 128
    Cooling: 4 Silencer Aux Fans - to replace the 3 original fans and a 4th to take the place of the small factory speaker in front of the PCI slots, and 2 Ultimate Coolers, for the 2 Cheetahs which will be placed up the front in the bottom (2) 5.25 bays.

    If we understand Ton's post, on another thread, regarding 2 (vs. 4) 10k Cheetah HD's and 2 Miles2, we should not run into the write-thru problem, but we shall see once we receive everything (the Ultimates are back-ordered and the Silencers have not arrived yet) We are very pleased w/ the set-up and want to thank eveyone here again for being so generous w/ relaying so much info as well as sharing your vast experiences.

    Thanks,
    Thad and Susan

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Nederhorst den Berg., Netherlands
    Posts
    144

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    Even if you end up having to use write thru in my opinion:
    1) I definately prefer have to use "wt" vs. sacrificing the bus duplexed Miles2 raid.
    2) Although it's taking a long time, eventually there will be a fix for that problem.

    In the mean time I think you have made the right decisions.
    Keep us posted how things work out!
    Regards Ton

    [This message has been edited by Ton (edited 05 May 2001).]

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    Austin, TX USA
    Posts
    24

    Default

    So, we're fixing to crack her open this weekend and see how things play out. We thought we'd go in the following order:

    replace each fan (just the existing 3 for now - PC Cooling shorted us a fan, which is apparently currenlty on its merry way in the mail) with a Silencer

    Install the new RAM - 128's in A4/B4, 32's in A3/B3

    Install the new CPU (G3 500)

    Then start it back up and see how that went, mess around with the CPU and make sure it's running right, run some tests, etc.

    Next dive in will be to:

    Add the second Miles2 to PCI slot D2

    Stick the second Cheetah ST39204LW onto the aforementioned Miles2

    start it back up and work with SoftRAID to set up the striped RAID 0, run more tests, etc.

    Lastly, we will add the USB card, seem to recall some people ran into problems on some machines with this card.

    So that's the rough idea here, thanks for all the help and direction so far. Wish us luck!

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