Subject: 'quartet' tulip boards and sucky BIOS's.
To: None <>
From: Todd Whitesel <>
List: current-users
Date: 08/22/1999 03:57:12
I found a Cogent "PCI Quartet" board at a swap meet last month for $25.

This is a big PCI board with a DEC 21050 bridge chip and four 21040 Tulip
ethernets. There are later models which do fast ethernet; you can get them
from Adaptec now because Adaptec bought out Cogent or something.

Anyway, my i386 system (Iwill XA100 PentiumMMX-233) and its Award BIOS
doesn't seem to want to recognize the board, and neither does the Chalice
firmware in my arm32 CATS system. Other cards in the same slot work fine.

I don't see any messages whatsoever, as if the board were not really there.
Of course it is quite possible that I was sold a dead board, but the board
looks to be in good condition, does not run hot, etc., so it doesn't make
sense to me that it would simply not show up unless there were some problem
supporting the bridge layer that is present on this card.

The FAQ maintained on the adaptec site (search altavista for "pci quartet"
or adaptec for "quartet") expounds at length about the importance of
updating one's BIOS to get proper PCI support so these cards will work,
and the availability of hack drivers to get around the problem in the
short term.

Does anyone out there know of systems using these cards that might give me
a clue about whether or not I can get it running here, or how I can test to
see if it is just DOA?

Todd Whitesel
toddpw @