Some background first: It was with DOS that I began using computers, a Tek 8088 was my first PC, then we moved onto a Tandy 1000 TL2 then onto an HP Vectra VL2 486/66. On the Vectra is where I began using Windows.
With this project I pretend to recreate some of those experiences. I had some old components laying around, others, like the case and the 5.25″-3.5″ bracket adapter I bought new and this is what I came up with.
These are the specs:
Mobo: WS440BX Gateway Tabor 3
CPU: Pentium II Klamath 233 @ 133 Mhz
Ram: 64MB PC133
HDD: WD AC14300 4.3 GB
Video: Nvidia TNT 16MB AGP 2x
LAN: 3Com 3C905-TX
Sound: Soundblaster Pro 2 CT1600
Everything was coming along nicely, until, I realized the PSU placement was far from ideal:
Ouch. Never had this problem in my career. A quick search on the internets showed the problem is more common than I thought, even with modern hardware. I was able to find a local vendor who was selling an ATX 24 pin to ATX 20 pin converter, it even had the white cable for some reason (not that I’m complaining). Just a little help and I was back in business:
I was going to use an IDE to CF adapter, but then remembered part of the experience back in the day was that HDD noise, so I went for the oldest specimen I had.
The FDISK operations went fine, I removed the existing partition then created 2 partitions.
It was when I tried to format drive C: that it made that “clank clank” noise of death and format gave an error. Fearing the worst, still, I rebooted and this time tried to format drive D: which worked fine. I tried again to format drive C: and this time it went through. So I went ahead and proceeded with DOS installation, so far so good.
With DOS 6.22 up and running I went ahead and installed Win 3.11
Riva TNT Drivers installed. 1024×768 and 256 colors to keep that retro feel.
Sound card drivers, no problemo
The Sound Blaster Pro 2 CT1600 is an awesome card, (not pictured) I was playing some Gabriel Knight, simply outstanding.
Some of the games from my 8088 games also work fine
I’m pending to get the network card working.