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Old 07-31-2005, 10:31 AM   #1
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Registered: Jul 2005
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Wrong CPU speed reported on old laptop


I have an old laptop (Toshiba Tecra 8000) with a Pentium II 300 MHz processor. I dual boot Win98 and Slackware 10.1.

Using a free tool to check the processor speed in Windows (CPURadar), this processor speed is confirmed. However, after using Slackware on the laptop, I found it was unusually slugish.

$ cat /proc/cpuinfo

processor : 0
vendor_id : GenuineIntel
cpu family : 6
model : 5
model name : Pentium II (Deschutes)
stepping : 2
cpu MHz : 161.956
cache size : 512 KB
fdiv_bug : no
hlt_bug : no
f00f_bug : no
coma_bug : no
fpu : yes
fpu_exception : yes
cpuid level : 2
wp : yes
flags : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat pse36 mmx fxsr
bogomips : 221.18

The cpu MHz is just over half the real speed! Will this make a difference? Any suggestions to fixing this?

Many thanks,

Old 08-01-2005, 10:49 AM   #2
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Registered: Jan 2002
Location: Southern California
Distribution: Slackware
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I had a similar situation on a Compaq. The BIOS was crap and the way it handled the Speedstep stuff was odd.

If I booted without AC power or disconnected AC to use the battery, the CPU would drop from 850 to 700Mhz. No amount of handstands or cartwheels would make it come back to speed. The only option was to turn Speedstep off in the BIOS.

Not sure if that's your problem, but see what your BIOS options are and tinker a little.
Old 08-02-2005, 11:31 AM   #3
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Registered: Jul 2005
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Thank you!

'Speedstep' wasn't specifically the problem, but it was a setting in the BIOS.

For reference, to access the BIOS, press and hold <ESC> as soon as the machine boots up, (when the Toshia logo is displayed). Then, when prompted, press F1 to access the BIOS.

The setting that I changed was to disable "CPU Sleep Mode". I did this by:

Setting "Battery Save Mode" to "User Setting"
Setting "Processing Speed" to "High"
Setting "CPU Sleep Mode" to "Disabled"

$ cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep "cpu MHz"

cpu MHz : 299.947

I should point out that there may well be a way of switching of CPU Sleep Mode in linux, but I don't really know!

Thanks again 2Gnu!


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