All PS/2s use a battery of some kind to power the CMOS memory that holds
the system configuration information, and to run the Real Time Clock (RTC).
This page lists the different kinds of batteries in use and what their modern
alternatives are. Provided are also some tips on removing and reinstalling the
Cross-reference of individual PS/2 Models and the corresponding battery types.
Click on the FRU number for more information on that particular item:
FRU 33F8354 - 3 V Coin Cell Battery
This is a conventional coin-shaped 3 volt lithium cell; typical cost is about $3-$5. Equivalents are:
FRU 64F9987 - Dual Coin Cell Battery Pack
This consists of two conventional coin-shaped 3 volt lithium cells
soldered to a small circuit board, attached to a 5cm red & black cable with a battery
connector at the other end. A plastic hood covers the two cells. Currently, there is
no known direct equivalent.
The lithium cells are 3 volt coin cells with two solder tags on one side.
Typical cost is about $4-$9 each. Equivalents are:
These cells are not as easy to find as any of the others listed here; places to try include:
An alternate approach is to use an AT-style battery pack, or anything else that will fit inside the case!
AT replacement battery packs are rated at 6.0 volts,
and generally contain a resistor which prevents charging and controls the voltage.
They come with attached wires, a 4 pin connector and velcro mount,
and fit nicely in the battery/speaker cavity.
The velcro can be used to attach it to the bottom surface so that it doesn't move.
The header pinout is correct, and even has the plug in the second hole to correctly polarize the header.
Cost is around $15.
One source is the BR-E3-BP, from Batteries Plus.
FRU 72X8498 - 6 V Lithium Battery Pack
This is a 6 volt two-cell lithium pack. The original IBM ones are usually yellow,
with black ends. Replacements are available as camera batteries; typical cost is about $10-$15. Equivalents are:
|Varta Panasonic GP Sony Sanyo
FRU 8509237 - Dallas RTC/CMOS Module
This is the infamous self-contained Dallas CMOS RAM module with an integrated RTC/CMOS chip and battery.
The entire module must be replaced. The Dallas part number is DS1287, but this part is now obsolete.
According to the Dallas Semiconductor data book, the DS1287 can be replaced by the DS12887 (the latter
is pin compatible but has more RAM).
The DS12887 is not Year 2000 compliant, but of course PS/2s are compliant except that a manual reset of the date
is required at the start of the year 2000. Do not be tempted to use the Year 2000 compliant
upgrade to the DS12887, which is designated the DS12C887; it uses the century byte differently to a PS/2
and will apparently not work.
The DS1287 can also be replaced by the DS1287A, and the DS12887 by the DS12887A; the only difference in each
case is that the part with the 'A' suffix has a pin which can be used to clear the RAM; this pin is unused
There is also a way to Rework the DS1287
(by attaching external battery to the RTC module).
Some useful info about DS1287 and other RTC modules can be found HERE.
Typical cost is $10-$15. Equivalents are:
PS/2 Models 50, 60, 70, P73 or 80
The battery is held in a special Battery/Speaker Assembly.
Battery in your machine is dead, configuration is lost after relatively short
time again and you get the error-codes 161, 162/163. Or the internal clock will
not display the correct date and time after the system was powered off for
some time. (Hence: this is not necessarily a battery problem.)
You try to get a PS/2 battery FRU 72X8498 for your system.
And pay about 40$ (or 60 DM in Germany) for this.
Isn't there any cheaper solution?
Yes - it is. Go to your local photo-shop. Have your old battery with you and
look for something labeled 'CR-P2', or 'BR-P2' (different manufacturer,
different numbers sometimes), either from Panasonic, Varta, Sony or DL223A
from Duracell... or any other. All are 6V-Lithium batteries. Compare the two.
Appears to be the same. Compare the price. Wow! Only a few dollars
(or 26 DM here).
Take one of these batteries and leave the old one in the shop for recycling.
PS/2 Models 25SX, 56, 57, 76, 77, 85, 90, 95 or PS/2E
These models use a round button-type Lithium cell FRU 33F8354
which is in fact a CR-2032. Easy to guess that these things are much cheaper
in a department-store than supplied as a spare-part from IBM.
Same tip as above: remove it from your computer, go to a department store
(photo-shop / watches department), buy one with the same number or a compatible
and leave the old one in the shop for recycling.
PS/2 Models 25 and 30 (8086)
The model 30-0xx has a 3V-battery on the riser-card (slot card) and it is
soldered. If you are a bit experienced with a soldering iron and
a multimeter, you will sure find + and - of the battery, unsolder it
and install one of the cheap battery holders for 2 resp. 4 pieces of AA
(Mignon) batteries. These holders come with a red wire for + and a black
wire for -, are made of plastic and you could use some velcro-tape
to put them i.e. at the rear of the unit or somewhere else. Make sure,
that the terminals on the battery holder are insulated with tape and cannot
contact metal surfaces or internal parts.
Use 2 resp. 4 high quality 1.5 V -AA-style batteries (i.e. Duracell,
Philips or Ucar) and this construction will do until the year 2001 - or even
longer. Don't use too cheap batteries. The relatively high internal
temperature of a PC might lead to defective cells, these run out, cause
a big mess and probably damage the planar.
You can use batteries, because -unlike to some Taiwan-boards-
the CMOS/Setup-battery is a real 'battery', no accumulator. It will neither
be charged during power on nor will be any kind of 'refresh-current'
be applied on it.
That makes everything very easy.
PS/2 Models 25-286, 30-286, 35, 40, 55SX, 65SX
These units use so-called "clock-modules" - which is an IC-style circuit
(black box from Dallas Semiconductor) with a lithium battery molded inside.
These can only be replaced as a complete part.
All the above mentioned machines use a clock-module FRU 8509237
which is Dallas DS1287.
The DS1287 chip can be substituted by its successor DS12887 - which is pin-
And there is a way to Rework the DS1287
with an external battery when the internal cell died ... not for the faint
at heart and it requires some tools, solder capabilities and some more parts.