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Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

John Rowan_2
Regular Advisor

Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

I have a quad pentium pro Proliant 6500r that had a 1613 battery low error. I opened the machine up to replace it to find the battery rivitted to the mounting plate. There are two three prong external battery connectors immediately next to it. I purchased batteries and plugged one in thinking I could reconfigure the machine as it had lost all it's settings in CMOS and wouldn't boot because it didn't recognize the RAID controller.

Well, the original CDROM reader was not working, it ejected every CD I inserted. I installed three others I thought were good but all failed. I finally installed a DVDrom reader and was able to run SmartStart. Having configured the machine it booted into Linux. I let it run for 12 hours overnight. When I shut it off and started it back up again it said the machine wasn't configured and date / time were not set. I moved the battery to the other external battery connector and configured it again but after shutting it off the configuration is again gone. I can't have my customer running SmartStart every time there is a prolonged power outage. How can I get this machine to keep it's configuration?

6 REPLIES
Gus Kwong
Respected Contributor

Re: Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

It may be to do with the metal connectors for the battery (i.e. it may need a light cleaning/sanding due to its age)?
Learning never ends
John Rowan_2
Regular Advisor

Re: Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

Apparently something else is going on with the machine. I've tried the batteries on either of the two external battery posts next to the original battery. Yesterday having configured the machine, warm booted several times into Linux then running init 0 (turned it off) the LCD on the front of the 6500 had the custom idle message I'd defined so with the machine off CMOS had the information I'd defined. After having the machine off for more than an hour (and I don't think this time length has anything to do with the problem) I turned it on but the LCD never changed from the idle message to a powering up state. The system turned on but never went through POST. After I turned it off then back on the machine complained that it was not configured and the date / time were incorrect. The custom idle message was gone at this point so something during the failed POST has CMOS clearing.
Gus Kwong
Respected Contributor

Re: Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

What is the ROMPaq/system ROM version at the moment?

I've noticed you've said "1613" error but not in your 2nd message --- is it still showing?
Learning never ends
John Rowan_2
Regular Advisor

Re: Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

The 1613 errors are gone. The ROM is showing 4/30/1999 I believe.
John Rowan_2
Regular Advisor

Re: Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

The version is E25 (04/30/1999), I looked at and downloaded what was suppose to be Apr 12 2000 BIOS upgrade but when I applied it the current and possible upgrade versions were identical. I applied the newly downloaded one anyway to see if it would resolve the problem but it did not and it stayed at 04/30/1999.

Here's the page I downloaded the supposed Apr 12 2000 BIOS upgrade:
http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/SoftwareDescription.jsp?lang=en&cc=us&prodTypeId=15351&prodSeriesId=254864&prodNameId=257759&swEnvOID=14&swLang=8&mode=2&taskId=135&swItem=MTX-UNITY-I7498
John Rowan_2
Regular Advisor

Re: Proliant 6500R Pentium Pro

Ok, I'm stuck.
I turned on switch 6 to clear NVRAM, cycled power to have it clear, then set switch 6 back to the off position. It cleared all settings.
I ran SmartStart, configured the machine and saved the settings. I cycled power and the machine refused to POST. This is the symptom I've been experiencing every time I cycle power. After two more power cycles the LCD showed activity and the machine started to go through POST. It again said the EISA configuration was invalid, date/time not set and prompted me to configure the server again. I ran SmartStart again, configured, saved, cycled power and lost the settings. There are no more 1613 battery low errors so I don't know why it fails to POST requiring another power cycle (which apparently is clearing CMOS).

I know it's only a quad Pentium Pro but it does everything my client needs it to do. He doesn't want to have to buy a new (or recently off lease via eBay) server. I've already spent way too much time on the box but I'd like to keep it running.