SGI Fuel

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An SGI Fuel
Another SGI Fuel

General information

The Silicon Graphics Fuel, introduced in 2002, was intended to be a single-CPU midrange solution for those customers who did not need multiple-CPU capability, thus offering a much cheaper system compared to a baseline Tezro or top-spec single-CPU Octane2.

Contrary to popular belief, Fuel was not a successor to O2. SGI never made a follow-on to O2; a new system was designed (internally known as the Banana2000 or b2k) but was never evolved beyond a prototype.

System architecture

Fuel shares the IP35-architecture with Origin 300, Origin 350, Origin 3000, Onyx 3000 and Tezro systems.

CPU options

Memory subsystem

512 MBytes to 4 Gbytes total system memory using up to four DDR SDRAM DIMMs

On introduction SGI claimed an industry-leading 3.2 GByte-per-second processor to memory bandwidth, and half that to the graphics subsystem. The Double Data Rate (DDR) DIMMS used are compatible with those used in the Origin 3000, Origin 300, and Origin 350. There are a total of four slots, organized into two banks of two slots. Each bank must contain parts of the same size, but each bank can vary in size.

I/O subsystem

  • PS2 Mouse/Keyboard ports
  • One 10BaseT/100BaseT Ethernet
  • Two serial RS232 ports (DB9)
  • One bidirectional parallel port
  • Two USB ports
  • 4 PCI slots: 2x 66MHz and 2x 33MHz 64bit
  • 2 Internal SCSI Controllers QL12160

Graphics subsystem

The VPro graphics chipset that SGI started for the Octane2 was also used for this system.

  • VPro10 32 MegaBytes RAM
  • VPro12 128 MegaBytes RAM
  • Dual Channel Display option (2 DVI-I ports)


Fuel comes with no sound option installed, however the system can be expanded with PCI or USB soundcards (see "Add-on options")

System ID

The System ID is stored in a Atmel EPROM and DS1742W-120, as discussed on this forum topic.

Add-on options

First section will cover PCI/PCI-X cards, with the official SGI Digital Media options listed first, then alphabetical by interface/function. Second section will cover devices interfaced through said cards that are known to work. (ToDo: Determine if this is useful to abstract into a separate page that can be included for all IP35-family machines)

SGI Digital Media Pro PCI Cards

  • DM6 Standard-Definition Digital I/O
  • DM8 Audio Card
  • DM10 1394 (FireWire) Card. 400 Mbps

Audio PCI Cards

  • M-audio Revolution 7.1 PCI card
  • RAD Digital Audio PCI cards, 3.3 volt cards only!
    • Native 3.3 volt-only cards, SGI Part # 030-1441-001 & SGI Part # 030-1649-001
    • Modified 5 volt cards, SGI Part # 030-0950-00?, only after modification per this thread
  • Creative Soundblaster Audigy, P/N SB0090, produces a warning message on boot (relating to the unsupported PCI-Firewire interface on the card) but works fine per this thread
  • Creative Soundblaster Audigy ES, P/N SB0160, according to this post - produces the same warning as the SB0090 above
  • Creative Soundblaster Audigy2 ZS, with audio sync issues per this post

see USB Devices for more audio output options

Ethernet PCI Cards

  • SGI GigE with SGI part number 9210289
  • Alteon ACEnic 10/100/1000 †
  • Compaq NC7770 Gigabit Server Adapter † (Tigon3 chipset)
  • 3Com 3C996 10/100/1000 PCI-X Server Network Interface Card † (Tigon3 chipset)
  • Generic BCM5704 Dual port Gigabit ‡

† see here for hacking instructions

‡ Broadcom cards are discussed in-depth in this thread

Fibre Channel PCI Cards

  • Qlogic QLA-2200 (single-port, 1GB/s)
  • Qlogic QLA2310/2310F (single-port, 2GB/s, requires IRIX6.5.18 or later)
  • QLogic QLA2340 (single-port, 2GB/s, requires IRIX6.5.18 or later)
  • QLogic QLA2342 (dual-port, 2GB/s, requires IRIX6.5.18 or later)
  • QLogic QLA2344 (quad-port, 2GB/s, requires IRIX6.5.18 or later)
  • LSI LSI7104XP-LC (single-port, 4GB/s, requiresIRIX6.5.28 or later)
  • LSI LSI7204XP-LC (dual-port, 4GB/s, requiresIRIX6.5.28 or later)


  • LSI SAS3041X-R 4 internal SAS/SATA ports
  • LSI SAS3442X 8-port SAS/SATA HBA (4 ports internal, 4 external)
  • LSI SAS3442X-R 8-port SAS/SATA HBA
  • LSI SAS3080X-R 8 internal SAS/SATA ports (the HP 347786-B21 is an OEM version)
  • LSI SAS3800X 8 external SAS/SATA ports


  • SGI 2-Port PCIX Ultra320 SCSI LVD/SE HBA - SGI Part # PCIX-SCSI-U4-2P
  • LSI LSI20320-HP Ultra320 SCSI LVD/SE HBA (HP-oriented equivalent, single port only, no external connector)
  • LSI LSI21320-IS Ultra320 SCSI LVD/SE HBA (OEM functional equivalent to PCIX-SCSI-U4-2P)
  • LSI LSI22320 Ultra320 SCSI LVD/SE HBA (two external ports)
  • LSI LSI22320-R Ultra320 SCSI LVD/SE HBA (two external ports) - SGI part number 013-1994-002
  • Qlogic QLA-1080
  • Qlogic QLA-1280
  • Qlogic QLA-10160
  • Qlogic QLA-12160

Serial PCI Cards

  • PCI Serial I/O (UFC), SGI Part # 030-1657-003


  • Adaptec AUA 3020 Rev B Firewire/USB Combo card (blue PCB), see this thread for details (Rev A with blue PCB prevents my Fuel from booting --S.)
  • Belkin F5U220

Firewire PCI Cards

  • Adaptec AFW4300B (red PCB)
  • Belkin F5U503Vea1 (blue PCB, both as per aggregator)
  • Belkin F5U503 revS-3 as used to connect a hard drive, described here

Firewire-connected Devices

Note: IRIX support for FAT file systems is limited to FAT16 / 2GB.

  • Flash Card Readers
    • Microtech FW CameraMate (Compact Flash - there is also an SCM branded version of the CameraMate) - see this thread for details.
    • Lexar RW-19b Firewire (Compact Flash) - see this thread for details.
    • SanDisk Extreme IV FireWire Reader/Writer (Compact Flash) - see this thread for details.
    • HAMA Traveldrive CF (Compact Flash) - see this thread for details.
  • Hard Drives
    • Maxtor One Touch II - Combo USB2 and Firewire (300Gig)
    • Elite Pro FireWire Enclosure with Oxford911+ chipset
    • LaCie Hard Drive (design by F.A. Porsche)
    • LaCie d2 Quadra 1TB (designed by Neil Poulton, not an Oxford911 chipset, see here)
    • Any unit using the Oxford 911 chipset may work
  • Video Capture
    • ADS PYRO A/V Link - professional quality DV breakout box Model 550
      • zafunk writes: I have this model, but have yet to be able to do much with it. I can't capture more than a few frames before it craps out. Further testing to be done.
    • Apple iSight, original external "can" version, see this thread

Serial-connected Devices

USB-connected Devices

  • Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer USB
  • Apple Mighty Mouse
  • Apple Pro-Keyboard
  • IBM Preferred USB Keyboard
  • Griffin iMic and iMic2
  • Telex USB audio device
  • Apple iMac Graphite USB keyboard
  • Logitech TrackMan Wheel USB mouse (scroll supported) - on O3200, should work on Fuel too?
  • Sony VAIO USB mouse
    • See here for info on setting ioconfig.conf. Use man usbinput.

A number of cheap USB audio devices are known to work for output only, see this thread for details

IRIX support

IRIX Versions from 6.5.17 up to the latest overlay (6.5.30 at this time) are supported on this machine. Firewire support became functional around 6.5.27

IRIX and hardware bugs

xfs_fsr locks up the system while running against the file system on any firewire drive. This has been a problem for over two years now with no repair in sight.

Temperature sensing on early Fuel mainboards is notoriously prone to failure, rendering the computer inoperable if environment monitoring is left on. Amateur repairs are possible, see here : [1]

Fuel PSU Issue and Environmental monitoring

Fuel power supplies are variants of off-the-shelf units offered for consumer PCs. However the pinouts, if not hte voltages and functions, differ even though the OEM part numbers do not. This is described in this forum thread and includes speculation about substituting one for the other. If you pursue this please be aware that you do so at your own risk, but please share the results with the community if you are successful.

TODO: write about L1 monitoring of PSU fan speeds and the Fuel just knowing its not a SGI PSU.

PSU repair

Further reading

SGIstuff: Hardware: Machines: Fuel

Fuel overview at

Fuel documents at

Wikipedia page

IP35 at

Fuel Hardware Aggregator at

Discussion of compatible audio devices at

Restore Fuel L1 firmware after broken update