Category Archives: Intel

XMVM Surgery

Last week I was prompted to take a look at the Intel Code Builder compiler from 1991, a 32-bit compiler targeting 386 extended DOS and shipping with its own DOS extender. It is what one might call an extremely obscure … Continue reading

Posted in 386, Development, Intel, PC history, Software Hacks | 10 Comments

The IBM PC, 41 Years Ago

No, the OS/2 Museum does not have either a time machine or difficulty doing basic math. As of this writing, it is August 2021 and the IBM PC was announced in August 1981, 40 years ago. But in August 1980, … Continue reading

Posted in 8086/8088, BIOS, DOS, IBM, Intel, PC hardware, PC history | 60 Comments

Nobody Expects…

…the Spanish Inquisition! Well, that too, but also nobody expects that a bland, run-of-the mill Novell NE2000 NDIS driver would crash/hang just because it runs on 486 or later CPUs. I wanted to try the “basic” DOS redirector shipped with … Continue reading

Posted in 486, Bugs, Intel, Microsoft | 6 Comments

8237A DMA Page Fun

The other day I was trying to fill a couple of gaps in my understanding of the Intel 8237A DMA controller documentation. I wrote a small testcase that performed a dummy transfer and modified the base address and count registers … Continue reading

Posted in Intel, PC architecture, PC history | 3 Comments

Nehalem and 4 Gbit DDR3

While discussing Intel desktops with DDR2 memory using 2 Gbit technology (4 GB UDIMMs), the question of Intel’s next generation and 4 Gbit DDR3 (8 GB UDIMMs) came up. It’s more or less the next iteration of exactly the same … Continue reading

Posted in Intel, PC hardware, PC history | 8 Comments

The Phantom Intel GM47 Chipset

I spent a bit of time recently putting together technical documentation for Intel’s 4-series chipsets, partly motivated by research into Intel’s support of 4 GB DDR2 memory modules, partly driven by idle curiosity about one of Intel’s many hyped up … Continue reading

Posted in Intel, PC history, PC press | 7 Comments

Seek and Ye Shall Find…

…in the strangest places! Lately I’ve been digging up marketing materials related to Intel’s desktop boards (I’ve long been toying with the idea of writing up a brief history of the circa 10 years of Intel Extreme Series boards). There … Continue reading

Posted in Archiving, Intel, PC hardware, PC history | 2 Comments

Return to Stormville

A while ago I griped about a strangely ill-behaved Intel DX79SR Stormville board. To recap, the board simply refused to take any memory in the 4th memory channel. Since then, there have been very interesting new development in the story. … Continue reading

Posted in Bugs, Intel, PC hardware | 3 Comments

How Old Is OMF?

The Object Module Format (OMF), used by most DOS development tools, and eventually displaced by COFF/ELF in the 32-bit world, is quite old. It is a somewhat strange format because of its age, and it is quite complex, both because … Continue reading

Posted in Development, Intel, Microsoft, PC history, x86 | 8 Comments

Those Win9x Crashes on Fast Machines…

It is well known that Win9x variants prior to Windows 98 have a tendency to crash on fast CPUs. The definition of “fast” is of course fuzzy but the problems were known to occur on AMD K6-2 processors running at … Continue reading

Posted in AMD, Bugs, Intel, Microsoft | 24 Comments