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PC motherboard problem... Anyone know a bit about motherboards?


Deaf Cat

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Hiya,

 

More of a fault finding problem rather than an audio pc topic, hope this is okay here..?

 

I seem to have no drives registering when using sata ports 3 and 4 is nothing found to boot from, sata port 2 seems the most reliable out of the 4 on board ports, but win7 and xp both crash every now and then. Yes I have tried different cables, different hdd's and different operating systems, clean installs, bios reset, etc. Even bought a pci-e sata card booted from that with win7 and it still crashed.. That is what has confused me. Thinking it was a sata controller problem, using a pci card I thought would have bypassed the sata controller problem?

 

I have measured the voltages on the large long multi connector from the psu to the motherboard, all seem stable and within tolerance. Tonight I noticed another 4 cable (two black and two yellow) connector going to the motherboard from the psu as I was taking the mother board out to have a close look at the capacitors, to see if any had expanded, all look fine. I shall find out the 4 pin plug and what the black and yellow cables are supposed to carry and measure those.

 

Any thoughts?

 

Please let me know if this is not the sort of question that should be on CA and I'll post it somewhere else,

Cheers

 

DC

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I would recommend testing for possible memory reliability issues. This is surprisingly common reason for random crashes.

 

Windows nowadays includes a memory test utility, but I don't remember now how to launch it at boot. Maybe it was on the installation DVD?

 

I personally use memtest86+ utility:

Memtest86+ - Advanced Memory Diagnostic Tool

Signalyst - Developer of HQPlayer

Pulse & Fidelity - Software Defined Amplifiers

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The four-pin PSU connector feeds the processor.

 

Usually one can see all voltages in the bios-settings. These should be pretty accurate.

 

The USB3 and 4 issue can be a setting in the bios as well; some mainboards have RAID integrated that usually/sometimes are on these ports.

 

Miska's recomendation is a good one...

 

But what actually happens when the system crashes? Does it freeze up? Does it spontaneously reboot?

 

Your description of the problem and info on the mainboard makes it pretty hard for us to help though...

“We are the Audiodrones. Lower your skepticism and surrender your wallets. We will add your cash and savings to our own. Your mindset will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.” - (Quote from Star Trek: The Audiophile Generation)

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Random crashes are usually related to bad memory. Run memtest86 for at least a day. If you are booting from a hard drive use SATA port 1. How do you have the SATA ports defined in BIOS? Some motherboards have IDE mode and may limit the number of drives you can connect.

AMR 777 DAC, Purist Ultimate USB, PC server 4gig SOTM USB, server 2012, Audiophil Optimizer,Joule Preamp LAP150 Platinum Vcaps Bybee, Spectron Monoblocks Bybee Vcaps, Eggleston Savoy speakers, 2 REL Stentor III subwoofers, Pranawire Cosmos speaker wire, Purist Dominus Praesto cabling, Purist Anniversary (Canorus)power cables and Elrod Statement Gold power cable, VPI Aries I SDS w/Grado The Statement LP, 11kVA power isolation, 16 sound panels and bass traps TAD,RPG,GIK and Realtraps

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Many thanks for the replies, I shall put the motherboard back in and run the memtest86.

 

Sometimes the system just freezes, most times screen goes black as the pc goes quiet, then reboots, other times I'm told the program has a problem and needs to be shut down..

 

I shall check the bios mode of the sata ports,

 

Thank you

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A little more info, may help fault find I hope..

 

On boot up screen I always get 'boot error'

 

In the bios no matter what is plugged into sata ports 3 and 4 they are always listed as 'not detected'

 

In the bios the sata controller is set as 'compatible' out of the options including 'disabled' and 'enhanced'

 

memtest86 is now running and I have

ram slot 0 2048MB DDR2-333 Kingston

ram slot 1 512MB DDR2-333 Dane Elec (C-memory)

 

I guess if any thing turns up under the error headings, one swaps out the ram.

 

I seem to remember the first pc, a mate helped my decide upon, and buy, he said it is a good idea to have all the same make and size of ram, can't say I ever have, and has not seemed to make any difference, do you think it could be a possibility that two different sizes and makes of ram could cause a hicup every so often?

 

Any comments much appreciated!!

Many thanks

DC

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I would think you would want matched RAM for best sound.

 

I am not sure what compatible means but it may be the same as IDE mode. You can try enhanced and see if it gives you the extra drives. I don’t know which one will sound best. You may have to reinstall changing this option but it will not hurt to try it to see if the other SATA ports work. It will not corrupt your install you will just have to change it back to boot the drive or reinstall with the new setting.

AMR 777 DAC, Purist Ultimate USB, PC server 4gig SOTM USB, server 2012, Audiophil Optimizer,Joule Preamp LAP150 Platinum Vcaps Bybee, Spectron Monoblocks Bybee Vcaps, Eggleston Savoy speakers, 2 REL Stentor III subwoofers, Pranawire Cosmos speaker wire, Purist Dominus Praesto cabling, Purist Anniversary (Canorus)power cables and Elrod Statement Gold power cable, VPI Aries I SDS w/Grado The Statement LP, 11kVA power isolation, 16 sound panels and bass traps TAD,RPG,GIK and Realtraps

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Rather a pleasant surprise :-)

With about 4 boots with hdd and cd drive in different sata slots each time the machine boots and the cd drive shows up too!!

Thank you coxhaus for the tip on trying 'enhanced' I'm hoping, fingers crossed, that may have been causing the random crashes...(one can only hope)

 

memtest86 ran for just over 10 hours with no errors.

I will check the other pc and see if I can swap ram to get the same make in each pc, had not thought of different ram sticks affecting anything, but seeing/hearing how minor changes can, I think it's worth getting the same ram in the same pc, cheers.

 

I'm still getting 'error boot sequence' at every boot though..?

In the bios cd/dvd drive is set as first boot device, hdd as second...

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ram sticks now the same make and size

 

I don't understand the 'error boot sequence' remark on the boot screen each time it is started.

 

I have no sound device installed, and can't find a driver for it, the OEM Lenovo driver I have downloaded and installed makes no difference...

I have a 'Unknown Device' in Device Manager...

 

It has been up all day just on tick over, desk top, and now and then internet, so far so good...

 

Many thanks for your comments so far,

Cheers

DC

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I think the ‘error boot sequence’ is related to a possible boot device attached to your machine. It could be a USB stick or drive or even a CDROM drive. I would just make a bios change to boot the hard drive first which should take care of the problem. If you want to boot with your CDROM drive, then you will need to remember to change the bios setting back otherwise it will boot the hard drive first.

AMR 777 DAC, Purist Ultimate USB, PC server 4gig SOTM USB, server 2012, Audiophil Optimizer,Joule Preamp LAP150 Platinum Vcaps Bybee, Spectron Monoblocks Bybee Vcaps, Eggleston Savoy speakers, 2 REL Stentor III subwoofers, Pranawire Cosmos speaker wire, Purist Dominus Praesto cabling, Purist Anniversary (Canorus)power cables and Elrod Statement Gold power cable, VPI Aries I SDS w/Grado The Statement LP, 11kVA power isolation, 16 sound panels and bass traps TAD,RPG,GIK and Realtraps

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Thanks for the reply, there is nothing attached on the outside only a mouse, keyboard and screen.

 

On the inside there is one hdd and one dvd drive. I am pretty sure I told the bios to boot from the hdd only and don't even look for anything else, but will check! there are 3 boots, primary, loss of power and error (or something similar) will check all 3.

 

Thank you

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