Question about SGI Silicon Graphics Silicon Graphics 320 PC Desktop

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Upgrade Sgi 320 To Windows XP

I have a SGI 320 is it possible to load or upgrade to WINXP from WIN2KPRO?

Posted by bflickin on

  • 5 more comments 
  • bflickin May 06, 2008

    Can I get an upgrade CD from a place like Best Buy? Or do I have to order it here or from SGI? Please give details

  • bflickin May 06, 2008

    So I will not have to upgrade the firmware again? Am I understanding you correctly? I thought I might have to buy an all new computer

  • bflickin May 06, 2008

    Silicon Graphics 320 Running windows 2000 Professional. I upgraded the firmware to 3.14 or 3.41 a couple of years ago. I have dual pentium 3 running at 550Mhz and 1gig of ram.

  • bflickin May 06, 2008

    Maybe having dual processors running at 550Mhz will help. I'll give it a try thank you.

  • bflickin May 07, 2008

    This was a bad idea.

  • bflickin May 08, 2008

    No chat actual chat which cost me $20.00 and no refund on the software that didn't work... another $200.00. I thought I was talking with a person whom was familiar with how the Silicon Graphics 320 workstation ran and operated in regards to upgrades. I took no action without consultation. Thanks anyway but I've lost too much money and my system due to bad advice.

  • bflickin May 08, 2008

    I only bought the upgrade because that's what you suggested. Who knows if it will sell. I didn't buy the full version.



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That's true, I have a dual 1 GhZ SGI 320 and it can only go as far as Windows 2000 Professional and with an Orange Link adapter card can you get the the USB Fire Wire to work as intended. There are a few sites out there where SGI users can still exchange info. I upgraded the machine from a Dual 500 mhz processors and followed several sites walk throughs on the updates & software update. Keep in mind this machine can only run 1GB of ram which is specific to SGI and hard to find, and if you are still willing to pursue the dual processor upgrade they have to be matched and a specific voltage regulator has to be used for the higher speed processors. Will the sytem boot up and run now? If it does and you are not inclined to do all of the other upgrades it makes a good server w/ WIN2K. What did you pay for it? I noticed there are some mentions about finding them on ebay still. Problem is the sellar isn't going to tell you about the limited upgrade path that these once powerful machines have. A lot of scrapped or cannibalized 320 & 540's are out there. If you run older cad or visualization 3d programs it works great, games forget it esp. the newer ones that require the latest directX. If your machine came with a separate sound card with midi interface that works great with legacy sound editing programs but becomes inoperative with the WIN2K upgrade. When I say older and legacy, like around 1999 to 2003 programs. You have what's considered a hotrod of it's time, but it's easily overshadowed with the newer dual, quad-core, xeon machines. For reference sake when the 320 shipped to customers back in 1999 configured with dual 500 mhz processors 500mb ram, soundcard & speakers and a 21" sony CRT monitor it was just under $9K - that was and is still a lot of money. But it ran the programs fast esp. ones written with dual processor support like Photoshop and Accurender...Dell, IBM and HP all had and still have "workstation class" machines. SGI just doesn't do Windows based machines, and it looks like they are in deeper financial trouble now. Upgrade Sgi 320 To Windows XP - 9d5e209.jpg

Posted on Dec 23, 2008



It is NOT possible to run XP on an Silicon Graphics 320 Visual Workstation . (PERIOD!)

and, yes although xp and NT are similar in most respects (low level), SGI did not partner with M$ and hence there is no compatibility with XP and SGI320 bootloader. End of story. Additionally, SGI support no longer supports the 320/540 systems. So, you're stuck with Googling ;)

Posted on Oct 20, 2008


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The 320 and 540 Visual Workstations shipped originally with Microsoft Windows NT 4.0. Due to the ARCloader PROM, a custom Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL) for Windows was necessary. Windows 2000was the last release which included the required SGI-specific HAL.Because of that, and because SGI ceased supporting the VisualWorkstation series, installation of future Windows versions such as XPis unsupported.

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