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Old 2021-10-20, 05:58   #1
RetroGamer
 
Oct 2021
Houston, TX

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Default Running Prime95 on Windows 98 OS

Hello,

I am new to this forum. I’m not an overclocker but I use Prime95, memtest, IntelBurnTest, Furmark, 3DMark and all the other typical OC programs to test hardware stability.

I have a few older desktop PCs from the mid to late ‘90s that can really only run Win9x or DOS effectively. I’m sure there are probably old distros of Linux that may run on a P-133 MHz PC with 32 MB of RAM but I don’t know what they are. For now, I am using these machines solely with Windows 98.

Some of you may remember, Windows 98 is very unstable compared to the operating systems of today. If there’s anything incompatible or wrong with a driver or a program, a BSOD will show up or your computer will freeze. If it’s catastrophic enough, you may have to do a clean install! It was an incredible time waster but some programs only work well with that OS.

I want to use Prime95 on some old desktops from 1995 and 1999 since I just repasted the CPU heatsink and replaced the CMOS battery, changed some cards, upgraded some RAM sticks, etc. I basically just rebuilt them. They are strictly stand alone, non internet, non networked PCs.

The purpose of running Prime95 would be to test cooling, CPU and RAM stability. (Memtest86 seems to be working great on these old computers for RAM specific testing).

Here’s the silly question: Can Prime95 run on Win98? If so, which version of Prime95 is appropriate? If this is archived somewhere, I apologize. I haven’t found any info on this subject after looking.

If there’s a Linux distribution out there that could be run from a CD that could be used instead for the purpose of running Prime95, please enlighten me.

(I’m just trying to use Prime95 for hardware testing without ruining my setup.). Thanks!
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Old 2021-10-20, 06:47   #2
Zhangrc
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RetroGamer View Post
Hello,


Here’s the silly question: Can Prime95 run on Win98?
Yes. Try version 20 and before at https://download.mersenne.ca/gimps_a...les/p95v20.zip, although it makes no sense to get any assignment.

Last fiddled with by Zhangrc on 2021-10-20 at 06:47
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Old 2021-10-20, 06:52   #3
xilman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RetroGamer View Post
I have a few older desktop PCs from the mid to late ‘90s that can really only run Win9x or DOS effectively. I’m sure there are probably old distros of Linux that may run on a P-133 MHz PC with 32 MB of RAM but I don’t know what they are. For now, I am using these machines solely with Windows 98.

If there’s a Linux distribution out there that could be run from a CD that could be used instead for the purpose of running Prime95, please enlighten me.

(I’m just trying to use Prime95 for hardware testing without ruining my setup.). Thanks!
I first ran Slackware Linux on a 25MHz 386 with 4M RAM and a 40M disk, so it can surely be done on your high-end hardware.

I'll rummage through old distros and see what I can find. Later...
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Old 2021-10-20, 06:59   #4
RetroGamer
 
Oct 2021
Houston, TX

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zhangrc View Post
Yes. Try version 20 and before at https://download.mersenne.ca/gimps_a...les/p95v20.zip, although it makes no sense to get any assignment.
Outstanding, thanks!

Seeing the text below in the read me file of version 20 makes me feel better about installing and running it:

The "Start at Bootup" menu choice (on by default) will run prime95
every time you boot your computer (Windows 95/98/Me) or when you
logon (Windows NT/2000/XP).


That’s the first I’ve ever seen those old versions of Windows mentioned, thanks again. I’ll install, run, and let you guys know if the old Packard Bell and IBM Aptiva like it!
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Old 2021-10-20, 10:12   #5
kriesel
 
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If it's only for hardware reliability testing, fine. If you care about cost/task accomplished, or impact on anthropogenic climate change, some sufficiently old/slow equipment is too costly to run even when it's free.

The old versions compatible with Win98 are limited to smaller maximum exponent.
The old hardware may be hundreds or thousands of times slower than recently designed processor chips. It may be unable to complete one useful sized DC before hardware failure.

Sufficiently old slow computing hardware would cost more in electricity per completed 70M DC than the cost of new hardware plus the electricity to run the task on new hardware.For a basis of what tests cost at ~$0.12US/kWHR and p~85M see https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpo...8&postcount=20.

Software limits:

In whatsnew.txt,
v29.8 AVX512 ffts added (which go up to ~1169M)
v24.12 up to 596M
v19.0 up to 79.3M
v16.1 up to 20.5M
v14.0 up to 5.26M

Hardware limits:
see https://www.mersenneforum.org/showpo...74&postcount=8 and its attachments

Reference info in general, https://mersenneforum.org/showthread.php?t=24607;
prime95 thread there, https://www.mersenneforum.org/showthread.php?t=23900

Have fun, and choose well.

Last fiddled with by kriesel on 2021-10-20 at 10:15
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Old 2021-10-20, 17:06   #6
RetroGamer
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kriesel View Post
If it's only for hardware reliability testing, fine.

Have fun, and choose well.

Yes, the purpose of running it is just for hardware reliability testing. I don't anticipate running Prime95 much longer than 24 hours or so.


Thanks for the links - interesting.
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Old 2021-10-21, 02:47   #7
RetroGamer
 
Oct 2021
Houston, TX

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Thumbs up Update: Prime95 v20 Works Fine

Thanks for the info. I just downloaded it, unzipped it, and double-clicked on Prime95.exe and started the torture test.

On this old version, there are no options for small FFTs, in-place FFTs, blend, etc. I did have to enter my CPU speed.

I’m just going to let it run a while. I ran it about 4 hours today, no problem.
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Old 2021-10-21, 04:55   #8
ixfd64
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Judging by your username, I assume you're using those PCs for playing old games?
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Old 2021-10-21, 08:06   #9
henryzz
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Might be worth checking if any of these pcs need a dedusting before stress testing them. Some would also recommend replacing the thermal compound if the pcs have been idle for a few years.
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Old 2021-10-21, 08:25   #10
S485122
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henryzz View Post
Might be worth checking if any of these pcs need a dedusting before stress testing them. Some would also recommend replacing the thermal compound if the pcs have been idle for a few years.
He has :
Quote:
Originally Posted by RetroGamer View Post
...
I want to use Prime95 on some old desktops from 1995 and 1999 since I just repasted the CPU heatsink and replaced the CMOS battery, changed some cards, upgraded some RAM sticks, etc. I basically just rebuilt them.
...
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Old 2021-10-21, 10:50   #11
RetroGamer
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ixfd64 View Post
Judging by your username, I assume you're using those PCs for playing old games?
Yes, 100% correct. There was kind of a “golden age” of desktop PC gaming in the late ‘90s. We had great simulation games that were optimized for 3Dfx cards. There were special versions of Mechwarrior 2 that came bundled with the cards, there was M1 Tank Platoon II, optimized for Glide 3DFx cards, etc.

People spend a lot of time trying to get those old classics to run on Windows 10. When they succeed, the programs still don’t really run or look right. It’s better to play them on a machine built for that purpose.

(It’s also stupid fun and cheap doing all that cleaning, applying thermal paste, upgrading, etc.)

I’m using Prime95, memtest, and old 3DMark programs - honestly, just for the sheer fun of it as well. PCs have evolved. This is good for doing serious work, and accomplishing important life-saving tasks, of course.

Regarding fun, however, they’ve evolved into being too expensive and the programs I liked are stuck in the past. 1st person shooters are very popular now, which isn’t my thing but it’s what gaming PCs are optimized for nowadays.

Last fiddled with by RetroGamer on 2021-10-21 at 10:59 Reason: I rarely do it right the first time
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