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Triones 360 Drivers
Well, I'd heard good and bad about the Triones drivers.  Mostly bad.  However, I decided that they deserved an installation and some benchmarks.  The first problem I encountered was finding them.  Version 360 was what I was told I wanted and after a few hours searching, I came across a post (in French) in DejaNews.  This lead to a University FTP site in France.  Fortunately the FTP site is mostly in English and I was able to find the drivers.

These drivers are specifically for the TX chipset and have provisions to be installed on Win3.x, Win95, WinNT, and OS/2.  I should have known there would be problems as soon as I read the first README.  It states that "If you are using a CD CHANGER, do not install these drivers."  I do not have a changer, I have a single disk drive.  I gave this warning a moments thought and went on to the README in the Win95 folder.  It does not mention this warning and gives some trouble shooting advice for CD drives.  I figured that I would be OK.  Wrong.

I reinstalled OSR2.1 from scratch and started to install the Triones drivers.  A nice, easy, well documented installation.  Everything went smoothly until it was time for the program to install the Secondary IDE Controller.  At this point the CD light came on for about 3 seconds and went out. And then it did it again.  And again.  After a few minutes of this, I realized it was stuck in a loop.  After playing with it for a while, I finally gave it the three finger salute. (control-alt-delete)  After closing the application and returning to the desktop, it decided it was time to detect the secondary controller again.  Same scenario.

To compress this story to book size, the only way I could stop the program from searching for the controller was to hit the reset button.  This didn't help matters a bit.  Now, after running POST, the BIOS is unable to find my CD.  The end result was that after redoing the CMOS setup, redetecting the secondary controller and booting in "safe" mode, I uninstalled the drivers.  Back to normal, CD and all.

Now, there may well be a work-around for this problem.  I don't know.  And, quite frankly, I really don't care.  I should have listened when I was told, "Don't bother with them."

However, for those of you that have to try it for yourself, like me...here is the link to the FTP site.  Just remember, you were warned. :^)

ftp site - univ-montp2.fr

Triones 370b Drivers
I haven't updated this page in a while due to the fact that I haven't come across anything new to test.  This changed when I was sent a copy of the Triones 370b UDMA drivers (thanks Dirk).  I must say that I wasn't really looking forward to installing these drivers for a couple reasons.  First, it meant wiping my very full C: partition to start with a clean installation to try to reproduce the same environment I had used on the previous Win95 UDMA tests.  I also removed some new hardware I had acquired since the last tests.  Format C: in itself was not a bad thing, as it had been a while since I had *really* cleaned up this partition.  ;^)  The main reason for my lack of enthusiasm was that the previous version of the Triones (Triones 360) had hung up on the installation of the secondary IDE controller and caused me an afternoon of grief.  After a little deliberation, I decided that the Triones were worth a second try.

After unpacking the file and reading the README.TXT, I found that the text was written for the series 360 drivers, however the date of the text was earlier than the 10/24/97 date of the files themselves.  OK you're right, I'm having second thoughts already.  Despite this, I continued on.  The installation went smoothly and after a couple of reboots, I was Triones powered.  No hangs, no problems.  Yet.  I ran the Winbench98 and HD Tach tests 3 times each, defragging and rebooting between each test.  After the last HD Tach test, I was rebooting to start on the Threadmark series when I noticed that the BIOS was searching for the CD-ROM.  It found none and then the system locked up at the Windows splash screen.  After way too long at the splash screen, I was forced to power off and restart.  After trying  unsuccessfully to get the BIOS to detect the CD, I shut off the secondary IDE, booted in safe mode and removed the Triones drivers.  I reinstalled the Win95 default drivers, got the BIOS to re-detect the CD, and reinstalled the Triones.  The remainder of the tests went smoothly, and though I defragged and rebooted numerous times to try to reproduce the problem, it did not reoccur.

When it came time to uninstall the Triones drivers, I was pleasantly surprised by the ease of getting rid of them and returning to the default MS drivers.  It's a matter of running the install program and choosing remove rather than install.  After a couple of reboots, the MS drivers were back in place and the only remaining thing to do was check the DMA boxes in the HD section of the device manager.

In all fairness, the Triones 370b may work well on some systems, and I am running an antique of an Atapi CD, but with the problem I encountered, I would be hesitant to recommend the Triones without reservations.  The benchmark results were only average, with the CPU utilization running a bit on the high side.  All things considered, the 370b version worked much better than the 360 version, which didn't work on my system at all.

If you are using Adaptec's Threadmark 2.52, be wary of comparing your results to the results I've received with version 2.00.  In the 3 or 4 drivers I've tested with both programs, version 2.52 shows a burst rate of about 35% higher than version 2.00.  My high mark of 21.5 MB per second using Threadmark 2.00 shows as 28.9 using version 2.52.

Chart 6 - 250 MHz  Triones 370b

Device Triones set up
Disk Drives Quantum Fireball(s) 
no DMA check box
HD Controller Intel PIIX4 BM IDE 
Controller (UDMA support)
HD Controller PRI. IDE Controller
HD Controller SEC. IDE Controller
?Other ? Removed
?Other ? PCI USB 
(no USB patch installed)
System Devices DMA Controller 
check 64 K & 4 GB
System Devices 82371AB PCI ISA Bridge
System Devices 82439TX Pentium Processor to PCI Bridge
USB none enabled
USB none enabled
USB none enabled
. .
Test Triones set up
WinBench 98 v 1.0 .
CPUmark 32 643
FPU 817
Business Disk 98 1210
High-End Disk 98 3530
CPU Utilization 43.3%
Avg Seek (ms) 13.9
Transfer - Beginning 10500 KB per sec
Transfer - End 9210 KB per sec
Win95 Build 1111
. .
Threadmark 2.0 4.97 MB per sec @ 
36.13% Utilization
. .
HD Tach 2.00 .
Transfer Rates
Max - Min - Avg
In KB per sec
11070 - 6546 - 9559
Avg Seek -
Peak Transfer Rate
15.0 ms 
21.3 MB per sec

 While testing WinNT drivers, I decided to include a chart on actual file transfer times between my 2 disk drives.  I thought it was an interesting addition to the benchmark programs I used then, and think it's also useful here.

Benchmarks vs Real World
I was curious if I could see a noticeable difference in speed in transferring files between the two hard drives in a real-world application.  For this test, I assembled a folder containing 500 MB of various file types including, but not limited to ZIP, JPEG, GIF, DOC, and TXT.  I timed the transfer between two 1000 MB partitions.
The folder was moved from drive 0 to drive 1 and back again.  This process was repeated three times for each driver configuration with the results being averaged.  Along with the Triones results, I've included the best results from WinNT, Win95, and Win98.

   Chart 7- Timed File Transfer

Driver used Time to transfer  MB per second
NT Tyan 4021 Driver 118 seconds 4.24 MB per second
Win95 MS UDMA 122 seconds 4.10 MB per second
Win95 Triones 370b 132 seconds 3.79 MB per second
Win98 MS UDMA 124 seconds 4.03 MB per second

If you want to try the Triones 370b drivers (tri370.zip), they are available through DFI motherboard's ftp site.  If the download screen does not appear, try clicking (DFI's ftp) first, and then retry the tri370.zip link.  I seem to have a problem resolving the IP address from my location.

Next - Intel 3.02 BMIDE Drivers

& Default MS Drivers
Intel 3.01
BMIDE Drivers
Tyan 3.10
BM Drivers
Triones v. 360
Triones v. 370
Intel 3.02
BMIDE Drivers
Intel Drivers
& BM Links
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