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Dell Precision 690 OS/Hardware Question

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Dell Precision 690 OS/Hardware Question

This question has been answered by Precisionjjs

Hello,

    I have a 690 w a single dual core running Windows 2003.  It has MB MY171 rev A01.

Can I put Dual quad X5300 CPUs in it?

What are the chances of getting Windows 2008 working?

What are the chances of getting Windows 2012 working?

Will any of the Socket 771 X53XX Xeons in it?

Verified Answer
  • Can I put Dual quad X5300 CPUs in it?

    Yes: http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/products/precn/en/spec_precn_690_en.pdf

    What are the chances of getting Windows 2008 working? What are the chances of getting Windows 2012 working?

    Good, but it can't be guaranteed. Just because it takes server processors doesn't mean it will support server operating systems. The Precisions were never intended to be servers - they are workstations. There is a good chance that you can load a server OS and have it run fine, but there is also a chance that some of the hardware is workstation grade only and don't have drivers that will work properly.

    Will any of the Socket 771 X53XX Xeons in it?

    Will what? Fit? Work? All 771's will fit, but not all X5300's may work. Check the spec sheet above. X5300's are supported, but not necessarily all of them. The spec sheet says "up to" 1300MHz and 2x4MB/8MB meaning that if any X5300 processors exceed those specs, they may not work (unless support was specifically added via BIOS update). 

  • They are marked differently, some are marked "INTEL CONFIDENTIAL" and others are marked with their own unique STEP codes. 

    www.intel.com/.../CS-028477.htm

    ^^ That is a link to Intel's Processor Identification Utility - from there you can follow the link "Product Specifications and Comparisons" and it brings you to here:

    http://ark.intel.com/

    Which is essentially a list of all Intel CPUs. From there you can find the Xeon x5355 for example, and it will bring you to here:

    ark.intel.com/.../Intel-Xeon-Processor-X5355-8M-Cache-2_66-GHz-1333-MHz-FSB

    If you look on the right hand column of that web page you will see in the grey box that says "PCN/MDDS Information" there is a listing of the stepping codes that were produced for that CPU chipset. For the X5355 it looks like SL9YM, SLAC4 and SLAEG (I have SLAEG in my P690's). That is about the extent of my knowledge. I don't know what PCN or MDDS means --I would imagine that it could be the country of production or the market center the CPUs were released in....???? Perhaps certain CPUs are locked or unlocked for overclocking (which does not matter for Dell systems).??

    All I know is that you need to match those codes when running a dual (or quad) CPU machine. If you try and run a SL9YM CPU with a SLAEG CPU its bad. The server will not POST and you probably could run the risk of ruining the CPUs as well as the motherboard. 

    For example, you see on eBay and other sites a lot of CPUs being advertised as the retail version when they are actually ES CPUs. I purchased three pairs (six CPUs) of Xeon W5580 CPUs a few years back and I was sent two proper W5580 SLBF2 CPUs and four cpus marked "INTEL CONFIDENTIAL QGXP". The QGXP CPUs are not laser etched as retail CPUs are and they also only clock up to about 3.0ghz rather than 3.2ghz as the W5580 CPUs do. They simply are not the same CPU however the seller advertised them as such and had a photograph of the retail CPUs online.

    I would recommend against buying ES CPUs for a variety of reasons. Just make sure you match the STEP codes and heat sync's (Dell makes different heat sync's depending on whether the machine is running a dual or quad or with/without hyperthreadding CPU.) when you install the second CPUs. Also mind the order of installing RAM with dual CPU vs. single CPU. Some motherboards are different and require the memory to be populated differently. 

    Good luck!

All Replies
  • Can I put Dual quad X5300 CPUs in it?

    Yes: http://www.dell.com/downloads/global/products/precn/en/spec_precn_690_en.pdf

    What are the chances of getting Windows 2008 working? What are the chances of getting Windows 2012 working?

    Good, but it can't be guaranteed. Just because it takes server processors doesn't mean it will support server operating systems. The Precisions were never intended to be servers - they are workstations. There is a good chance that you can load a server OS and have it run fine, but there is also a chance that some of the hardware is workstation grade only and don't have drivers that will work properly.

    Will any of the Socket 771 X53XX Xeons in it?

    Will what? Fit? Work? All 771's will fit, but not all X5300's may work. Check the spec sheet above. X5300's are supported, but not necessarily all of them. The spec sheet says "up to" 1300MHz and 2x4MB/8MB meaning that if any X5300 processors exceed those specs, they may not work (unless support was specifically added via BIOS update). 

  • I have Windows Server 2012r2 (Standard) running on a P690 with 2x Intel Xeon x5355 CPUs and 64GB RAM (with memory riser). 

    I am running SLAEG CPUs. If you upgrade or change CPUs you can not just put "any" pair of CPUs in. You ABSOLUTELY MUST match the CPU stepping codes or the machine will not POST. Does not need to be SLAEG, just needs to be the exact same stepping codes for the two CPUs you purchase. Also, I have had mixed results with engineering sample CPUs in the P690's. No problems with the T7400's and T5500/7500's but the P490's and P690's can be temperamental. 

  • @PRECISIONJJS

    I had no issues installin g 2008R2 on it with single Dual Core.  I ordered some processors for it.

    Will all Engineering Samples be marked ES?  I don't see much point in Engineering Sample chips to be truthful.

  • They are marked differently, some are marked "INTEL CONFIDENTIAL" and others are marked with their own unique STEP codes. 

    www.intel.com/.../CS-028477.htm

    ^^ That is a link to Intel's Processor Identification Utility - from there you can follow the link "Product Specifications and Comparisons" and it brings you to here:

    http://ark.intel.com/

    Which is essentially a list of all Intel CPUs. From there you can find the Xeon x5355 for example, and it will bring you to here:

    ark.intel.com/.../Intel-Xeon-Processor-X5355-8M-Cache-2_66-GHz-1333-MHz-FSB

    If you look on the right hand column of that web page you will see in the grey box that says "PCN/MDDS Information" there is a listing of the stepping codes that were produced for that CPU chipset. For the X5355 it looks like SL9YM, SLAC4 and SLAEG (I have SLAEG in my P690's). That is about the extent of my knowledge. I don't know what PCN or MDDS means --I would imagine that it could be the country of production or the market center the CPUs were released in....???? Perhaps certain CPUs are locked or unlocked for overclocking (which does not matter for Dell systems).??

    All I know is that you need to match those codes when running a dual (or quad) CPU machine. If you try and run a SL9YM CPU with a SLAEG CPU its bad. The server will not POST and you probably could run the risk of ruining the CPUs as well as the motherboard. 

    For example, you see on eBay and other sites a lot of CPUs being advertised as the retail version when they are actually ES CPUs. I purchased three pairs (six CPUs) of Xeon W5580 CPUs a few years back and I was sent two proper W5580 SLBF2 CPUs and four cpus marked "INTEL CONFIDENTIAL QGXP". The QGXP CPUs are not laser etched as retail CPUs are and they also only clock up to about 3.0ghz rather than 3.2ghz as the W5580 CPUs do. They simply are not the same CPU however the seller advertised them as such and had a photograph of the retail CPUs online.

    I would recommend against buying ES CPUs for a variety of reasons. Just make sure you match the STEP codes and heat sync's (Dell makes different heat sync's depending on whether the machine is running a dual or quad or with/without hyperthreadding CPU.) when you install the second CPUs. Also mind the order of installing RAM with dual CPU vs. single CPU. Some motherboards are different and require the memory to be populated differently. 

    Good luck!

  • Thanx for very good information!