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Thread: Operating System compatibility on early x86-32 chips

  1. Default Operating System compatibility on early x86-32 chips



    http://maker4d.uw.hu/osc_compatibility.png <--- Click for updated chart.

    Currently i'm gathering information on OS compatibility with early 32 bit x86 chips.
    I will update this table regularly. You can help me filling the holes if you have information.

    Please note: Its 2020, and your mind could play trick with you, and maybe you misremembering something from 20 years ago!
    Therefore, please only suggest new information if you can verify it, or if its from verifiable source.

    Mod Edit: Added the link under the table as per OP's request.
    Last edited by lutiana; February 3rd, 2020 at 09:14 AM.

  2. #2
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    The last version of Windows to support "lesser" CPUs is Windows 2000.

    Windows XP will not install on anything older than a Pentium because it requires CPUID and CMPXCHG8b. This rules out Cyrix's 5x86 and anything based on it. You can install Windows XP on a 486 system if you have a Pentium Overdrive, either the 63 or 83 MHz version. I've done it and it works, it's just painfully slow.

    The Cyrix 6x86 core is very buggy and Microsoft officially dropped support for it in Windows XP.

    I had an AMD GeodeGX 400 some years ago and Windows XP would not install because Windows thinks it's a 486 class CPU.

  3. Default

    Thankyou for the informations, however in certain cases even if the os refuses to install, once if its installed, it works with the questioned cpu. Therefore i am currently canot red out the 6x86 and 5x86 and geode cpus based on that.

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    If by IBM 486, you mean Blue Lightning, it will run Windows 95. I have such a system.

  5. Default

    thankyou krebizfan, list updated

  6. Default

    It seems i cant edit the original post any more, so here is the latest updated version

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    Quote Originally Posted by Geri View Post
    Thankyou for the informations, however in certain cases even if the os refuses to install, once if its installed, it works with the questioned cpu. Therefore i am currently canot red out the 6x86 and 5x86 and geode cpus based on that.
    The requirement in Windows XP is concrete, it's required by the kernel, HAL, boot loader, etc.

    https://reactos.org/wiki/Supported_Hardware/CPU

    They tested the 6x86 and they confirm CPUID and CMPxCHG8b are missing, which means that the 5x86 at minimum will also not work. I know a Geode will fail too because I've tested it.

    Interestingly, it looks like later core revisions of the 6x86MX and MII added at least some support for those instructions, but it doesn't appear they work correctly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by krebizfan View Post
    If by IBM 486, you mean Blue Lightning, it will run Windows 95. I have such a system.
    You can run Windows 98SE on a 386 by bypassing the system checks, it's just painfully slow.

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    FWIW, in the Debian 7 column: the last version of Debian that ran on original-vanilla 386 CPUs was Debian Sarge, circa 2005. Etch and later need a "486". (Their justification was a series of library and GCC issues that cropped up specifically on the 386, and of course the Linux kernel proper depreciated 386 support in 2012.) Whether they'll work on some of those mutant CPUs like 486SLCs, etc, is possibly an open question.
    My Retro-computing YouTube Channel (updates... eventually?): Paleozoic PCs

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    Quote Originally Posted by GiGaBiTe View Post
    You can run Windows 98SE on a 386 by bypassing the system checks, it's just painfully slow.
    I know I've seen Windows 95 running, or at least booted, on a 16mhz 386sx, so it would surprise me immensely if any of these CPUs couldn't run it.
    My Retro-computing YouTube Channel (updates... eventually?): Paleozoic PCs

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