[Coco] Re: The evolution of the Coco..
John E. Malmberg
wb8tyw at qsl.net
Sat Apr 23 17:07:24 EDT 2005
Nickolas Marentes wrote:
>>>2) Only one model of motherboard could be use. I'm assuming your are not
>>>going to rewrite the BIOS for every motherboard Chip Set out there. What
>>>happen when the version 2 of the motherboard comes or they some making
>>>it? The life span of a motherboard is less than a year these days.
> One could buy 100 mainboards and effectively "lock" the platform. I doubt
> you'd ever be able to sell more than this.
Having watched one support organization try this in order to simplify
spares maintenance, I would not count on that one working.
In a batch of allegedly 500 identical motherboards there were several
manufacturing changes that were incompatible at many levels.
It took two months of pushing at high levels to get one of the suppliers
to the motherboard to admit to changing out the video chip to a new
generation with out notifying the motherboard manufacturer.
It was noticed because the new video chip needed newer drivers which the
chip set manufacturer only released two months after the hardware was in
the field. Otherwise you were restricted to the low end VGA/EGA/CGA modes.
This affected about 50 percent of the lot.
A number of the motherboard BIOSes did not respond properly to the
CTRL-ALT-DELETE sequence. That affected about 25 percent of the lot.
Later testing showed that a number of the motherboards could not run at
their rated speed if you put a stress test on them. I do not know how
much of the lot was affected by that.
You might be surprised at stuff that is in the BIOS and drivers that is
only there to work around hardware bugs that were discovered late in
There are IO chipsets out there that drop interrupts or do other bad
things like overrun DMA.
For the average user, if you get one of these lemon chipsets and notice
it immediately, you can usually get the seller to swap it out. But
there may be thousands of users that may be perfectly happy living with
that defect because they do not stress their machine enough to notice.
When you make a bulk buy with the intent of selling the stuff over time,
what do you do when you find out a year after you bought your stock that
there is a problem with a number of them that can not be worked around?
Personal Opinion Only
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