Athlon L2 cache control via software?

— 10:06 AM on January 3, 2000

The details on this one are still coming into focus, but I thought I'd share what I know already. This development could be a bonanza for Athlon overclocking. I received word yesterday from Dave at the ComputerNerd that the German hardware site has posted some info about the latest program from H. Oda, the Japanese author of WCPUID and SoftFSB. Here is a rough translation of that first post on the German site:
Athlon L2 Cache Settable by Software!
Hardly has the 2/5 divisor become known than the next hammer blow falls. There is a new little program that permits one to simply set the Athlon L2 cache by software, so soldering is no longer necessary. The program with the name AthlonL2 originates from a programmer at, which has already developed SoftFSB, WCPUID and other tools. True, I haven't (yet) got the program but am presenting a screenshot!
Now this development is significant because the "Golden Fingers" Athlon overclocking cards can't control the L2 cache divisor via the Athlon's edge connector, and the Athlon's L2 cache chips are often the limiting factor for Athlon clock speeds. With control of the L2 cache divisor, Athlon overclocking could get much more interesting. (See our Athlon overclocking FAQ for more detail.)

At first, additional information from H. Oda wasn't available, but now has received some additional information via e-mail. Here's another (very, very) rough (abrasive, even) translation of another post:

New of H.Oda!
I received e-mail today from H.Oda. He writes that his Athlon L2 speed program is still in the beta phase. A release date was not determined yet. I did find, however, a further, very interesting screenshot. If you have already resoldered your Athlon L2 cache divisor to 2/5, you may be surprised that WCPUID 2.7 doesn't display 2/5 but an unusual '??? 9' or '??? 4' instead. H.Oda wrote me to advise that the next version of WCPUID will display the correct factor.
Note that the screenshot linked in the second post shows a slider for the CPU's multiplier, as well as for the L2 cache divisor!

I'm not sure what that means yet--could mean software control of the multiplier, as well. Regardless, it appears the Athlon L2 control program is real, though it's not yet generally available. We'll try to get a hold of a beta copy of the program and give it a spin. In the mean time, if you have any additional info about this one, please let us know or post a comment here.

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