NOTES ON: Windows XP (x86) SLI HaXiNg!

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by Aetherone, Jan 20, 2020.

  1. Aetherone

    Aetherone Member

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    Right, since I've spent the last few days teasing this out: NOTES ON: Windows XP (x86) SLI HaXiNg!

    tl;dr: Windows XP 32 bit, Intel 975x chipset (dual x8x8 PCIe), dual 7800GTX flashed with matching BIOS, SLIPatch v1.5, Nvidia 285.58
    SLI options appear in the control panel and 3D Mark performance damn nearly doubles when it's enabled.

    -----------------------The long drawn out bit-----------------------

    C'mon, who didn't want SLI'ed 6800 Ultras' or 7800GTXes back when they were $6-800 AUD cards? ... and to do it on a motherboard that wasn't SLI certified (and thus extra dollars) :leet:

    There was a lot of interest around SLI hacking way back in the day; however while there's a little activity on the Techpowerup HyperSLI thread and the thread on SLIPatch SLI on pre-i7/i5 hardware is pretty much dead; plus the software itself and the original forums looooong out of active development, it's a bit of a minefield. Plus all the cool kids had migrated to Vista/7 by the time these SLI hacks really got some legs so XP support was patchy as hell anyway.

    Still, despite the original Russian forums and websites being long consigned to the dustbin of history, I'd managed to track down copies of various versions of both HyperSLI and it's predecessor SLIPatch.

    Thanks to @sammy_b0i, I had a shiny working Asus P5W-DH with an Intel 975x chipset allowing x8 & x8 PCIe slots. After too many dead ones I also finally had a pair of fully operational 7800GTXes.
    PROTIP: Ghosting the system is an absolute essential as you go along.

    HyperSLI did not get along with my XP - killing it twice with bluescreen crashes at boot immediately after the OS selection screen. Using the other option of supposedly unmodified boot, also barfed :confused:.

    SLIPatch on the other hand, worked great. I started with v1.5 (the newest I could find) and it just worked first go. Reboot to desktop and get the familiar pop-up "This system is SLI capable, please click here yada yada" :D

    The first drivers I was using were old ones - v197.45. I've also tried v257.21 and v285.58 with success so far. There are reports of some drivers blue-screening some games but so far I've not seen that.

    Even better, it's working on a Pentium4 class CPU, one that lacks the VT-x later hacks seem to rely on.:thumbup:

    Once the rain passes and old bones stop hurting so bad, I reckon I'll keep testing into newer and never drivers to see where the limit lies before Nvidia got wise and killed the hack. Although with 7-series cards, I reckon Nvidia only went up to v307.74.

    I don't know where to host the SLI hacking software, but if anyone else is wanting to play too; just PM me and we'll organise to get you what you need :leet:
     
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  2. Vanne

    Vanne Member

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    Hmm brings back memories.. dfi lanparty non sli board hacked to sli with dual 7900gtx pretty sure I had the king Kong versions.. on XP. never had much of an issue, ran like a dream.
    :)
    Pics of your setup? :) I remember the hardest thing was trying to secure a PSU that was able back in those days to sustain the power hungry vid cards.

    Even ran a top 100 world wide 3dmark for a day or 2 back then..lol overclocked the crappers out of that system.. boy those dfi Lan party boards were the goods back then..

    Trying to remember the year, somewhere around 2003-4 I'd guess?
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2020
  3. OP
    OP
    Aetherone

    Aetherone Member

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    Wasn't the NF4 to NF4SLI just a B pencil away?
    Euw, no pics. Far too slapshod and messy to besmirch the forums with.
    Yeah, I'm shooting for a late 2004 vintage. The 7800's are about 6 months too new, but working 6800 ultras are just utterly ridiculous dollars. Thankfully the 775 Pentium4 fit neatly into the picture and with a more modern (~2009ish) cooler strapped to it actually overclocks damn well. Presshot my left foot!
     
  4. flu!d

    flu!d KDE Neon 5.16

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    I used to do this under XP in the day on dual 7800's from memory.
     
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