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From: technical123 on 6 Feb 2006 12:52
Actually Ubuntu & knoppix work okay but I hate to admit defeat with
mepis. Also I can get my canon printer to work with mepis (sort of
draft printing) but no luck with canon/ubuntu/knoppix
From: warden33 on 24 Feb 2006 23:31
i have a PTGD1-LA motherboard, and to my dismay i found out it has no
agp or pciexpress slots... i wanted to get a good video card for this
thing and now it's pretty much useless... it looks like there is a
space where a pci-ex slot should be and they omitted it in the
manufacturing, is it possible to add a pci-ex slot to this
From: Paul on 25 Feb 2006 01:03
In article <R4RLf.30017$Id3.29593(a)fe04.news.easynews.com>, no(a)spam.invalid
> i have a PTGD1-LA motherboard, and to my dismay i found out it has no
> agp or pci express slots... i wanted to get a good video card for this
> thing and now it's pretty much useless... it looks like there is a
> space where a pci-ex slot should be and they omitted it in the
> manufacturing, is it possible to add a pci-ex slot to this
But there could be more than the connector that is missing.
For example, there should be 32 ceramic capacitors next
to the PCI Express x16 slot, and they are probably not
there either. A good value for those might be 0.1 microfarad.
You need to know the size, like 0603 or 0402, when ordering
or specifying them. There should be a further 32 capacitors
next to the Northbridge. (PCI Express differential
interfaces are capacitively coupled, and there is a TX and RX
interface per lane.) The pictures on the HP web site are
too low resolution, to offer advice on what to use.
If you go here:
and enter "PCI Express connector" in the search box, I do see
some PCI Express connectors for sale. You would have to count
the pin holes on the motherboard, to help you select the
right size connector.
Also, HP makes several versions of your motherboard. If you
go to www.hp.com and search for PTGD1-LA, the first several
links returned, have pictures of motherboards on them.
Your board might be "Goldfish", while the "Grouper" board
appears to have the PCI Express connector soldered in place.
While you might attempt to go to the HP parts store, and
buy a "Grouper" motherboard, I don't know if HP has the
same kind of policy as other makers - that is, to get
a new motherboard, you have to return the defective one.
Some manufacturers do that, to prevent people from just
building a computer from parts. If you give HP a "Goldfish"
and buy a "Grouper", that won't work. They would be
looking for a "Grouper" in return, and a big credit card
bill could await you. As I don't know how the HP part store
works, I don't know if they only do board swaps, or you
can just buy an extra board outright. (I expect your
recovery CD will not work with a different model of
motherboard - at least until you swap the ROM or
something. Yes, recovery CDs stink...)
So, sure, if you had a high resolution photo of what the
board looks like, when all components for the PCI Express
interface are in place, then this project is potentially
This is why I tell people - if an HP/Dell/Gateway/Walmart
computer has _exactly_ what you want inside, then buy it.
But expect to have a hard time "fixing" the shortcomings
later. The fact that you get a recovery CD and not a
real Microsoft OS CD, means if you want to just give up
on the thing, and build your own computer, you don't
even get to recycle the software.
Building your own computer is relatively easy, and you
end up with something that is easier to maintain, and
easier to upgrade. Because you only buy components that
have sufficient documentation, giving you the
ability to judge whether the components are good enough
in advance. Many prebuilt systems have rude surprises
inside. The more money you try to save, the more corners
are cut by the manufacturer, on the construction of the
Soldering the connector in place would not be too tough.
You would need a "solder sucker", to clean the solder
that currently fills the connector holes. Some "solder
wick" will remove the final residue. For the job you
are attempting to do, I'd probably buy three small rolls of
0.050" wick. This is assuming the connector is actually
a thru hole type, and not some kind of surface mount
thing. Note that it is not practical to remove the
connector later - so you'd better install it properly
the first try :-) While you might think the same
techniques can free up all the pins, and the connector
will just fall out, it doesn't work that way. The
tiny bits of solder residue will keep the connector
firmly in place. At least, if your technique is as
bad as mine is. (While you could get some Chip Quik
from Digikey, I don't know if that will make the
release of a connector like that easier or not.)
So just do the job right the first time.
From: Deigo on 8 Mar 2006 22:33
Hi Paul, I desparately want a PCI-e on my goldfish motherboard. I'll
take a high resolution picture of my motherboard this weekend.
Hopefully you'll be able to tell me what I need to do to add a
functionally PCI-e connector to my motherboard. Will it be
automatically detected once 'connected'? Thanks in advance.
From: Paul on 9 Mar 2006 15:09
In article <gmNPf.40524$x96.28979(a)fe02.news.easynews.com>, no(a)spam.invalid
> Hi Paul, I desparately want a PCI-e on my goldfish motherboard.
> I'll take a high resolution picture of my motherboard this weekend.
> Hopefully you'll be able to tell me what I need to do to add a
> functionally PCI-e connector to my motherboard. ?Will it be
> automatically detected once 'connected'? ?Thanks in advance.
How much do you know about soldering ? You are going to have
to solder surface mount components onto the board. Have you
done that before ? Have you practiced your soldering on a
dead motherboard, to see how easy it is ?
Following your plan is not without risk. First of all, you
have to take the motherboard out of the computer case. You
cannot solder to it, while the motherboard is inside the
case. When you are finished soldering, you have to inspect
the work with a magnifying glass. You need a steady hand.
And my experience with motherboards is, the copper layer
on top is thin, and is easily damaged. (I lifted a pad on
my P2B-S while soldering to it. I managed to change a Vcore
regulator on board, but it wasn't easy. And I have plenty
of experience soldering. The printed circuit boards my
employers used to make, are much more rugged than cheap
motherboards. So utmost skill is required.)
To solder SMT caps and resistors, I use two soldering
irons. I reflow solder the caps and resistors, by holding
the soldering irons at either end of the components. It
is easy for the components to "stick" to the tip of the
soldering iron. Assuming the AC coupling caps on the PCI
Express lanes are missing, you have 64 of them to solder,
and they could be in close proximity to one another.
You could easily end up with solder bridging.
The experiment you are attempting, is something a rich
person could try, who has nothing to lose if the
experiment goes wrong. And if you have that kind of
money to throw around, it is easier to just get a
motherboard with a PCI Express slot, and build a
gaming computer yourself. At least that only requires
the skills of using a screwdriver, and is much more
likely to be a successful project.
I cannot find an Intel reference design for a PCI Express
motherboard, so there is no way to verify the values of
the components required. I have a few ideas, but really
I prefer a lot more certainty about the details, before
I would try to duplicate what you plan to do.
Your computer could be out of action for a number of
days, while you attempt this surgery. You'll need access
to a second computer, if there is trouble.
My P2B-S project cost me about $10 for electronics components,
and about $100 for tools. If you have never soldered before,
you will need to pick up some gear. Some anti-static materials,
like an anti-static mat and wrist strap would be a good idea
also. The cheapest soldering irons have electrically floating
tips, which adds the risk of static discharge into the work.
You need a very fine tip on the soldering irons, and a lot of
readily available soldering irons (the ones you could get at
the hardware store), are not suited to your project.
I hope I have spelled out the risks for you. You need to
practice your soldering skills on a dead motherboard first,
before you even start to unscrew the motherboard.