• Welcome to Overclockers Forums! Join us to reply in threads, receive reduced ads, and to customize your site experience!

Dual Tualatin System - Different Steppings?

Overclockers is supported by our readers. When you click a link to make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn More.


New Member
Jun 22, 2016
Hey folks, long-time lurker here. Recently acquired a dual-Tualatin server with one CPU installed. It came with an SL5XL, which is the A1 stepping, but the one I have is an SLB6Y, which is a B1 stepping. Can I use these together? The board documentation says to use matching CPUs, but I'm guessing that only refers to model rather than stepping. Though I would ask you knowledgable folks before running the system.

Cheers in advance.


Chapstick Eating Premium Member
Jan 14, 2011
you can probably use them together, but it wont work with windows server if you were planning on using that. trust me i ran into that problem with some xeon's had to have matching steppings. iirc you can install linux on it fine.


Senior Forum Spammer
Jun 6, 2002
I dont remember why but they have to be the same stepping to work in Windows.


New Member
Jun 22, 2016
Well, I installed Windows anyway and it appears to work. Not that I'm in the habit or ignoring other people's really helpful and kind advice or anything, just that I like to test things out :)

EDIT: From an HP support document (http://h10032.www1.hp.com/ctg/Manual/c00257064.pdf)

Based on the information available on the Intel website at the time of this writing, Intel supports mixed steppings of processors only under these conditions:

• All processors in a system must have identical family and model numbers as indicated by the CPU ID instruction.
• All processors in a system must operate at the same frequency; that is, at the highest frequency rating commonly supported by all the processors.
• All processors in a system must have the same cache size.
• The processor with the lowest feature set (stepping) must be the bootstrap processor.

Note also that for the Pentium II Xeon and Pentium III Xeon processors, Intel does not support the Functional Redundancy Checking Mode (FRC mode) in servers using a master and checker pair of processors with different steppings.

I guess it's all good given that the speed and cache size are the same, and the older stepping was already installed as the bootstrap CPU. Might swap them to see if it breaks.
Last edited: