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The Deskpro XE 466

Ah yes, the good old Compaq Deskpro XE 466. My very first 486 PC. Yes, I still have it and it’s been an ongoing project for the past few months.

The most recent addition was an external RTC battery so I can actually save the BIOS settings and keep time and date. Those things aren’t particularly cheap, but at least they’re easy to find. That’s something I guess.

Not much else has been done to it. I’ve tried to find some mounting rails for the optical drive, but those are absolutely impossible to find, even in the old parts catalogue I found online. I’m afraid that’s a lost cause. At least it has a CD-ROM drive now.

Hardware wise, it’s working fine otherwise. Aside from the network card, that is. I’m unsure whether it’s simply my ignorance in regard to early 90’s networking or something as stupid as an IRQ conflict, but the damn thing won’t connect to my network at all. I even tried switching out the Novell card for an AMD PCNet ISA card, but it does exactly the same. The next logical step would be to break out my 10baseT hub and hook that up to the rest of my network and see if I can get something out of the machine that way. Having a network transfer possibility would be super convenient to get data to it. The DX2/66 CPU should handle that well enough and Windows 3.1 should be okay with it too.

Once all that’s sorted, I can get back to testing some more software and games on the machine and rig up a capture solution so I can finally complete the video I’ve been wanting to make on the machine in action for a long time.

Stay tuned folks.

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