Ultimate 486 PC Update

The ultimate 486 PC now consists of the following hardware…

  • CPU : Intel 486 DX2 66Mhz
  • RAM : 32Mb
  • Video : Cirrus Logic CL-5428 VESA Bus
  • Sound : Creative Labs SoundBlaster AWE64 Value
  • IDE/FDD/COM/LPT : Winbond VESA controller
  • SCSI : Adaptec ISA 25 pin external/50 pin internal
  • LAN : Novell NE2000 Plus 3
  • Storage : SCSI CD-ROM drive, 520MB HDD and 250Mb SCSI Zip drive
  • OS : MS-DOS 6.22 + Windows 3.11

MS-DOS, SCSI drivers and Windows 3.11 installed without any issues. Having the Windows source files on the Zip drive sped up the process a hundred times! No floppy disk swapping for me!

Next job was to download the drivers for the SoundBlaster AWE 64, LAN card and the Cirrus CL-5428. Again, the ZIP drive here sped the transfer of files from my main PC. Will be even quicker once the LAN card has been configured. I had to use the “PLUSDIAG.EXE” application to configure the LAN cards IRQs etc.  Also used the utility to tell the card to use the RJ-45 connector. The Sound card and the VGA card installed without issues.

It was a challenge getting all of the hardware to work together. Brought back memories of IRQs, DMA, memory addresses and the like. Sound kept cutting out, and the Zip drive would stop working after I have used the LAN card. After about 1 hour of tinkering, I got it all working.

I’ve also copied some games over to get me started. These are all old shareware games. Titles included Jill of the Jungle, Duke Dukem, Doom, Heretic and Commander Keen. Time to have some fun, then maybe try and install a Linux distro on it!

Photos of the machine can be found here. These photos were taken a while ago, but the hardware changes are internal, so you cant see the changes!

2 thoughts on “Ultimate 486 PC Update

  1. I like it. I’m not sure if you’re already a member, but if not you should really have a look at the VOGONS web forum. A lot of us there actively still play with older computer hardware. I’ve been working on my own “ultimate 486” computer for about 15 years now…and I think I’ve almost gotten it right this time.

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