Changing video card in IBM 300PL?


D

David Buttery

I have an old IBM 300PL machine (a P3-533), which came with an 8 meg
Number Nine SR9 board in the AGP slot. Not anything thrilling, but it
works - but the AGP card is NLX form factor, ie almost un-
upgradeable. However, I've recently come into possession of a
Hercules Prophet PCI card (Radeon 9000 chipset), and having located
the Win98 drivers from the manufacturer's website, hoped to be able
to use that instead.

So, I uninstalled the SR9 drivers, rebooted into basic VGA and ran
the ATI configuration program, which went smoothly. But rebooting as
requested after doing that again just produced basic VGA, along with
an ATI error message saying that the control panel couldn't
initialise as the drivers weren't installed properly.

I've tried going into the computer's BIOS and changing active video
from AGP to PCI, but no dice. I'm clearly missing something blatantly
obvious - which I appreciate may be "it won't work on that PC" - but
I can't work out what. Any help, please?

I can't spend any money, you understand, so the obvious advice ("get
a newer computer") is not much use to me - I just want to know
whether *this* card will work with *this* PC, and if so, precisely
how I should go about installing it, ie what to do and in which order
to do it. Thanks in advance. :)
 
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G

Gary L.

I have an old IBM 300PL machine (a P3-533), which came with an 8 meg
Number Nine SR9 board in the AGP slot. Not anything thrilling, but it
works - but the AGP card is NLX form factor, ie almost un-
upgradeable. However, I've recently come into possession of a
Hercules Prophet PCI card (Radeon 9000 chipset), and having located
the Win98 drivers from the manufacturer's website, hoped to be able
to use that instead.

So, I uninstalled the SR9 drivers, rebooted into basic VGA and ran
the ATI configuration program, which went smoothly. But rebooting as
requested after doing that again just produced basic VGA, along with
an ATI error message saying that the control panel couldn't
initialise as the drivers weren't installed properly.

I've tried going into the computer's BIOS and changing active video
from AGP to PCI, but no dice. I'm clearly missing something blatantly
obvious - which I appreciate may be "it won't work on that PC" - but
I can't work out what. Any help, please?

I can't spend any money, you understand, so the obvious advice ("get
a newer computer") is not much use to me - I just want to know
whether *this* card will work with *this* PC, and if so, precisely
how I should go about installing it, ie what to do and in which order
to do it. Thanks in advance. :)
The 300 PL systems I've seen had built-in AGP video chips (S3 as I
recall). So if you pull the AGP card it will revert to the integrated
chip and that will the primary adapter. Hence the error message from
the ATi drivers that can't install. The BIOS will still initialize the
PCI card, but Windows then still tries to use the AGP card first.

You need to change the primary video card in *Windows* to the PCI
card, through the control panel. Then you should be able to install
the correct drivers. You can use the built-in VGA or the old Number
Nine board for a secondary display, if you like.

- -
Gary L.
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