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Weekend Happenings, 486 dx4/100, Racks

Pete Brown - 21 May 2007

This was an interesting weekend.

We had the AIS company picnic on Saturday, which was a lot of fun. I couldn't believe how many young kids (under 2) were there. My son love the ballons and whatnot. Unfortunately, he picked up a deer tick so we're off to the doctor today for that.

Saturday night, I ripped open my PC (which really needs an upgrade once the server/infrastructure situation calms down), and installed a DVD writer and a multi-function card reader. Both had been sitting on my desk for quite some time. The PC itself is a P4 3.0ghz with 2 gigs RAM, two10k RPM SATA drives striped and a 250gig IDE backup drive and a GeForce 5900XT. That's all in an Antec tower with a ton of fans.  BTW, I couldn't believe just how much dust was inside the computer case. If you don't open yours up every few months and clean it out, you may be surprised at just how much crud is in there.

It's really outdated now, but it was way overkill when I built it. Funny how that happens :) I'm looking to go quad core with 4 gigs and a better SATA RAID setup sometime in the next 6 months.

On Sunday, my father-in-law and I went and picked up the APC AR2100BLK NetShelver VX Rack that I won on eBay. How I thought I was going to do that myself is beyond me. My wife, knowing how I tend to get myself in trouble moving huge things like that, insisted that my FIL help out. It's a good thing, too, as not only was it over 300 pounds, but it had to be the most awkward thing I have ever moved. Even my 450 pound bandsaw was easier to move.

I have some rack rails for my servers due to arrive this week. I'll post some photos once I have it all hooked up and ready to go.

Later Sunday night, I also managed to paint the stairs. They need another coat, but I'll soon be able to get rid of all that ugly blue painter's tape. After that, I had to make room for the rack, so I cleaned out a bunch of junk downstairs. Among my "collector's items" that I tossed, was a Socket 3 486 dx4/100 (Intel Overdrive Processor) AT motherboard (upgraded from a DX33) from a circa 1994d upgrade to the first PC that I built back around 1991. (My first PCs, after the Commodore 128, were an XT and an IBM PS/1 286 with 2.5M RAM.) This motherboard didn't have VLB like my later one, and only had 4M of memory instead of the 16M I recall having later. As an aside, I have built my primary computer (and usually other ones around the house) since that first one. It has also gotten a lot easier to build PCs since that 486 DX33.

I'm surprised, but I actually found a shot of the motherboard in a hardware museum on the net. The motherboard is around 7 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches, small by today's standards.

posted by Pete Brown on Monday, May 21, 2007
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