Subject: RE: 2nd Announcement: cheap fast Alpha PC164 boards available
To: Edwin Foo <>
From: Laine Stump <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 04/16/1999 13:51:45
At 11:25 AM 4/16/99 -0400, Edwin Foo wrote:
>Actually, I was wondering - is this requirement for 36-bit memory a hard and
>fast one? I admit I'm no Alpha expert, but I have tons of 32-bit SIMMs lying
>around that I'd rather use instead of going out and buying $600 worth of
>memory for a $200 motherboard/CPU. :-)

As far as I can tell, it is. I'm in the same boat.

BTW, you can get what *I think* is the correct technical manual for this
board (it certainly seems to match) from the list of literature at:

I think the correct manual is:

(titled "AlphaPC 164 Motherboard Technical Reference Manual"). Don't get
confused and pick up manuals for the 164SX (low end) or 164LX (newer model
that uses DIMMs and supports slightly higher clocks).

It says that the RAM must be ECC (although it isn't quite so strongly
worded about the SIMMs matching - only says they must be the same size, and
maybe speed (I forget, and I didn't save a copy). one thing it didn't say
is whether the off-chip cache is user-upgradeable. It seems not, so you're
probably stuck with the 1MB cache that's on these boards (the manual says
they're capable of 2MB)

BTW, You can find slightly lower prices than what the ChipMerchant lists by
going to - they list places that sell 16MB ECC SIMMs for
$36 and 32MB SIMMs for $72. still expensive, unfortunately.

Anyone know a place that sells RAM pulled from working systems? One of
those places might have better prices. I looked on eBay and didn't find
anything reasonable, btw (although under Alpha motherboards they did list
this same board for $300, and the company selling it had links to a cute
little picture showing how to jumper the motherboard to keep the ATX PS on
all the time - I think that's the same link some else just mentioned).

(P.S. Since you work for Compaq, I'd figure you'd have access to lots of
employee discounts for Alpha stuff ;-)