Pentium Pro Revival

Apr 4, 2021 | Computing

$20 pickup

After an awesome find on Facebook marketplace I came home with a Pentium 2 and Pentium Pro machine. Both had their issues. This one had a bad bios battery and a dead VRM board, something that wasn’t apparent right away. The machine actually booted up at first until it released the white smoke.

VRM board dead

Turns out one of the capacitors on the VRM board decided to explode and take the PCB with it. I suspect that the cap leaked and shorted both layers and burnt a hole through it. Once I cleaned it out and found new copper to put the new caps.

After the new caps were in, the machine booted right up. Only to get stuck at the bios screen. It turns out this particular bios needs a working bios battery to get into Windows/DOS. To make it worse, it uses a clock chip with a built in battery. Something not easily available, but AliExpress came to the rescue.

I actually ended up giving this machine to my dad as I was more after a 486 machine and just don’t have the space.


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