Intel launched their Coffee Lake desktop processors in October of last year. The processors aren’t backwards compatible with the older 200- or 100-series motherboards, which means if you want to run one of Intel’s latest chips, you’ll need an enthusiast Z370 chipset-based board. Now it seems that modders might have managed to circumvent this limitation.
Modders get Intel Core i3 8100 to work with Older 100-Series Motherboard
A group of modders have been able to run Intel’s quad-core Core i3-8100 in a 100-series motherboard – the chipset originally intended for the 6th-generation Skylake processors. The mod requires various steps, such as tweaking the processor microcode, iGPU’s UEFI GOP driver, and adding some Management Engine (ME) bootstraps on the side of the motherboard BIOS.
The team has posted a guide over at Overclock.net forums should you want to proceed with the board hack. Just make sure you know what you’re doing, otherwise you may end up bricking your components.
Also do note that this mod is not recommended for use with Core i5 and i7 K-series CPUs because of the “higher power limits,” but it should still work with the non-K versions of these chips.
Back in December, a Baidu user also successfully managed to get a Core i3-8350K work on a Z170 board, although the modded system was unable to recognize the PCIe. The same happens in case of the latest workaround, with the issue affecting all board manufacturers except ASRock.
Intel has apparently locked compatibility within their Management Engine (ME). In fact, if it weren’t for the ME code, many board makers could have already unlocked backwards compatibility for Coffee Lake chips as indicated by Asus in last October. So far, however, there isn’t any manufacturer that has been able to manage this feat for consumer boards.
With that said, team blue is expected to roll out the mid-range 300-series chipset range sometime around the next month when it’ll be launching their remaining Coffee Lake chips. Intel and its board partners will be offering the long-awaited H370, B360 and H310 chipset motherboards that should lift the needless, costly Z370 restrictions.