Nonetheless, I said I was still gonna try over-clocking despite all that's happened.
Here's my "About This Mac" screenie:
Normally I'm hesitant about running non-stock elements on my gadgets. But then I wanted to change that HP logo during boot up with my own stuff (and yep, it's Apple/Mac OS X related).
Since editing the latest F.15 Insyde BIOS from HP to integrate the custom image I wanted would make it technically non-stock, I thought I'd rather go all the way and flash my 311 with icelord's de-whitelisted F.15 edited to include my choice of logo of course. That way, I can also install any card that works with Snow Leopard on the half-height PCI slot.
CAUTION: The following instructions below are to be carried out AT YOUR OWN RISK. I am not responsible for any damage resulting from this.
What You Need:
1. USB flash drive - the HP Mini 311, some say, is picky with USB's. Use one that you've tested to work before - in the previous BIOS updates, F.14 and below.
2. Icelord's F.15 - I had renamed the approprate file, which is 1 MB in size, to 3561.BIN. The BIOS file is also included in Retail Pack 0.9.
Prepare the USB to be used as BIOS flasher:
1. Format the USB drive to FAT32 - I normally do this in Windows, just to be sure.
2. Put 3561.BIN, the one you downloaded above, to the USB drive.
Flash the BIOS:
1. Turn off the HP Mini 311 and remove the battery. Make sure you plug its AC adapter to electricity source.
2. Plug in the USB BIOS flasher - I prefer using the USB port at the left, along side the AC adapter/power port.
3. Press "Windows" and "B" keys at the same time. Hold for around 15 seconds.
4. Without letting go of "Windows" and "B" keys, press the Power button to turn on the machine. Wait for about 15 seconds.
5. Let go of the two keys. In the next 10 - 30 seconds or so, your HP Mini 311 will beep and its fan will run. DO NOT TURN IT OFF or do anything, let it do its own thing and IT WILL TURN OFF ON ITS OWN.
6. Plug in the battery back and plug out the USB BIOS flasher. Verify that you do have F.15 bios by pressing F10 before the computer loads the OS.
1. Inside the BIOS screen (press F10 to get to the BIOS), use the arrow key to go to the Advanced > Performance Options: (press Enter to actually get into the screen you want for editing)
2. By default, the System Clock Mode is set to Auto. Change that to Linked:
3. Change the FSB - Memory Ratio to 3:2:
4. Set your FSB Clock - the important thing to note is to NOT EXCEED 800 MHz in total for the Atom N280 as this is its limit.
There are 2 figures to set up here.
- FSB Clock (MHz) has pre-defined numbers which you choose from: 256, 512, 768; and
- + (MHz) is user-defined. You can directly input numbers upto 2 decimal places, that is you can press "9" twice on the keyboard and you get "99" (highest by direct keyboard input). Higher than that, use F6 key to increase value by 1. Use F5 to decrease value by 1.
My personal recommendation is to use only 780 MHz FSB as maximum which gives me a 2.06 GHz clock for the Atom N280 and 1666 MHz for DDR3.
So my input would be 768 + 16:
5. Leave Memory Timing as it is; Auto. DOUBLE CHECK that your total FSB DOES NOT EXCEED 800 MHz. Press F10 to save changes as you exit the BIOS.
Unlike the Atom N270, the Atom N280 has a multiplier of only 10 instead of the latter's 12. This is the reason why the N270 can be over-clocked higher than the N280.
What does a Mini MacBook 311 gain by over-clocking?
To be perfectly honest, aside from seeing a clock speed other than 1.67 GHz on my About This Mac window, I don't know.
I did try to run Windows 7 experience test again after over-clocking and it still gave "3.2" as rating. But Windows 7 did, however, sense that there was a change in my hardware configuration and thus ran the test again.
Some say the system responds better with the higher clock but I guess my day to day computing activities are not those that benefit greatly from the increase in numbers. I'd like to say that Safari launches by at least one second faster than it would normally before, but I'm afraid that since I haven't run any timer tests on launching apps, it would only be a major blasphemy on my end.
Suffice it to say that so far, 2.06 GHz on my Mini MacBook 311 running 10.6.4 has been stable.
I still got that nasty "Backtrace terminated - invalid frame pointer 0xb0182d78" kernel panic at one point, but I'd blame the ApplePS2 kexts more for that.