Pentium 3 Flavors
Not all Pentium 3 processors are the same. Sure, we all know that processors are available in several different speeds, but there are more differences beyond speed. Now there are processors that use different package types, run on different bus speeds, and have different amounts of L2 cache running at different speeds. It gets confusing trying to tell the difference between all the different P3 processors.
First of all, we should address the different processor packages. Pentium 3 processors are available in SECC2 (Single Edge Contact Cartridge) and FC-PGA (Flip Chip Pin Grid Array) format. The SECC2 processors are compatible with the traditional Slot-1 motherboards. FC-PGA processors use the Socket370 format, but they aren't compatible with most current Celeron Socket370 motherboards. You have to use a special socket to Slot-1 converter designed for FC-PGA processors such as Iwill's new Slocket II converter.
Katmai, Coppermine, 100MHz, 133MHz
In addition to the different package types, there are also two different generations of Pentium III processors. The first generation of P3 processor based on the original "Katmai" core has 512KB of discrete L2 cache that sits apart from the core and runs at one-half processor speed. P3 processors based on the second generation "Coppermine" core have 256KB of L2 cache on the processor core running at full processor speed. Currently, Intel is in the process of phasing out the older Katmai processors in favor of the newer Coppermine chips. The Coppermines use a smaller metallization process. They are able to reach higher clock speeds, and are cheaper to produce. All FC-PGA CPUs are Coppermines.
During the transition from Katmai to Coppermine, consumers will have to learn how to differentiate between the different types of P3 processors. Right now there are four different kinds of P3-600 processors (more if you count the different SECC2 and FC-PGA formats). Thankfully, Intel adds an extra letter to the processor name to indicate the processor type. The normal Katmai processors maintain the original names -a 600 is a normal Katmai 600MHz, 100MHz FSB Pentium 3 CPU. The 600B is also a Katmai, but the "B" indicates a 133MHz FSB. The 600E processor is a Coppermine that uses the 100MHz bus, the "E" indicates a Coppermine core with 256KB on-die cache, and the 600EB is the 133MHz FSB Coppermine CPU. The Coppermine based 600E and 600EB processors are (or will be) available in both SECC2 and FC-PGA package formats.