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Dream machine turns into nightmare

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  • Motherboards
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June 22, 2003 6:50:30 PM

I put together the following system about 6 weeks ago:

Asus P4C800
P4C 2.8GHz
512 MB OCZ PC3500
Adaptec 2120S SCSI 320 RAID
2 73GB Seagate 15K RPM Cheetahs in RAID 0
1 200GB WD IDE
Pioneer 120S DVD
Sony DRU-500AX DVD-RW/R+-
ATI Radeon 9700Pro
Hercules GTXP

The P4C800 worked for 1 week. I got another one. That one died last week. I decided that was it for that mobo (you only have to kick me in the groin twice before I get the message) so I picked up an MSI Neo-LSR.

I did a clean install of everything and all seems well except that when I first turn it on I get an invalid boot disk error. I reboot and everything is fine. WTF?

The 200GB WD is only used for storage. There are no boot records on it. Also in the BIOS I have only the RAID array listed as a boot option. Any ideas? Everything seems stable otherwise.




Okay, brain. You don't like me, and I don't like you, but let's get through this thing and then I can continue killing you with beer. -- Homer Simpson.

More about : dream machine turns nightmare

June 23, 2003 12:27:48 AM

Many people have problems attempting to run their OS on RAID arrays. The boot sectors can become corrupted in the striping/mirroring process. Especially since Windows XP will only give you a 512KB cluster size during format (regardless of how you set it up in the RAID utility), as opposed to 64-512MB that is suggested for RAID. Third party software can help you work around this, assuming that it is the main problem. Try running the OS on a single drive for about a week. If it remains more stable, then RAID itself is probably the culprit. I had to resort to running a standard drive as my C, and the RAID 0 array as my D drive. I'm sure there are better options, but I haven't gotten enough feedback myself to see what.

<A HREF="http://www.rebturtle.com" target="_new">rebturtle</A>
<A HREF="http://www.rebturtle.com/turtletech.htm" target="_new">My System</A>
June 23, 2003 5:46:58 AM

I have a P4C800 Delux and was planing on installing a RAID array in the near future. I have been running a single C drive and the system is running quite well now. I hope Murphy wasn't listening. What utilities should I get before I set up the RAID array? I'm running XP Pro.

I specifically bought this board with the intent to learn a little something about RAID arrays. Looks like I may need to learn a lot more before I rely on it for my primary system.

ZZSpaceman
June 23, 2003 9:14:48 AM

Murphy ALWAYS listens :lol: 
June 23, 2003 12:10:54 PM

It is not normal that 2 mobo's die after a week of good operation. If was you I would check the powersuply very good. A bad powersuply can also be the reason of a wrong boot. I have seen a lot of trouble beceause of bad powersuplies. People who almost build a total new system beceause the old one didn't work, and in the end find out that it was the powersuply

<font color=red>duk-tape is like the force, it has a bright side and a dark side, and it keeps the universe together.</font color=red>
June 23, 2003 2:56:36 PM

yes the powersupply is a very important component not to go cheap on when you have this kind of system.....there is alot of +12V sucking components in this system and enough to overload an underpowering powersupply, which can damage components such as the motherboard!......

Here is my recommendation for a top quality power supply for your system...it will run you around 100 bucks and its well worth it

Enermax 465AX-VE (FMA)

Here is also a good read on power supplies
<A HREF="http://firingsquad.gamers.com/guides/power_supply/" target="_new">http://firingsquad.gamers.com/guides/power_supply/&lt;/A>

<A HREF="http://dnadesignz.kicks-ass.net" target="_new"><b><font color=green>MY SYSTEM</b></font color=green></A>
June 24, 2003 4:01:55 AM

Invalid boot disk can be cuased by changing the BIOS or having the BIOS Virus Detection on.

when you see smoke is that a good sign?
June 24, 2003 5:39:06 PM

Thanks for the suggestions all. Of course since I posted this it hasn't been doing it lately. I have an Enermax 550W PSU. I'm using MSI's Core Center software for monitoring voltages and they have been a bit on the low side. Here are some low readings:

3.3V - 3.23
5V - 4.89
12V - 11.70

I discovered a new problem. Once I set up Core Center on my PC it immediately gave me an alarm for a slow CPU fan. I still had my case open and to my surprise the fan wasn't spinning at all! I now use an adapter to plug it straight into a molex connector and all seems fine. Now my question is would an Asus P4C800 not POST if the CPU fan isn't spinning? When I had the P4C800 installed the fan was spinning whenever I looked inside. Could the wire on the fan be faulty and not be getting continuous power? Or is it just the header on the MSI motherboard? What's a good aftermarket HS/fan for a P4?

Okay, brain. You don't like me, and I don't like you, but let's get through this thing and then I can continue killing you with beer. -- Homer Simpson.
June 24, 2003 7:25:29 PM

Quote:
What's a good aftermarket HS/fan for a P4?

I installed an <A HREF="http://www.thermalright.com/slk900.html" target="_new">SLK-900u</A> with a Vantec Thermaflow 92mm fan. I like it ...

I also see others running either a <A HREF="http://www.zalman.co.kr/english/product/cnps7000cu.htm" target="_new">Zalman CNPS7000-Cu</A> or some Swiftech.

I'd just try to find reviews and take a look at what others are running and figure out what you like from that.

HTH.


IC7-G 1.3| P4 2.8 800 | SLK900-U / 92mm Fan (AS3) | 2x512mb Corsair PC3500C2 | 2x120gb SG SATA RAID 0 | 2x120gb WD RAID 1 | CM ATC201B-SXT | 520W | Radeon 9800 Pro | Audigy2
June 25, 2003 1:45:12 AM

I haven't paid too much attention to HS/fans because the stock P4's are decent. I think the primary characteristic I'm interested in is the least noisy.

Okay, brain. You don't like me, and I don't like you, but let's get through this thing and then I can continue killing you with beer. -- Homer Simpson.
June 25, 2003 2:59:43 AM

Quote:
I haven't paid too much attention to HS/fans because the stock P4's are decent. I think the primary characteristic I'm interested in is the least noisy.

well, i'd go read some reviews but definitely check out those two main ones above. I really like my 900.

As for noisy, don't go with a Tornado 92mm ... it will blow your ears out!! Very loud! I tested it and man it spins and screams. But, it's hard for me to tell how noisy this sys is anyway as I have 5 other machines in my small office and it's not the quietest room especially if I have my extra A/C on!!

-ot

IC7-G 1.3| P4 2.8 800 | SLK900-U / 92mm Fan (AS3) | 2x512mb Corsair PC3500C2 | 2x120gb SG SATA RAID 0 | 2x120gb WD RAID 1 | CM ATC201B-SXT | 520W | Radeon 9800 Pro | Audigy2
June 25, 2003 5:52:48 AM

I found out that a low noise power suply is totaly useless if you have 5 7200rpm harddrives in your computer :-(

<font color=red>duk-tape is like the force, it has a bright side and a dark side, and it keeps the universe together.</font color=red>
June 25, 2003 12:57:34 PM

If you want a low noise cooling fan the best is the panasonic panaflo series fans..you can find these on newegg.com..they are axial fans and push alot of air with minimal noise...the thermalright slk-900u is the top of the pack when it comes to hsf cooling...

<A HREF="http://dnadesignz.kicks-ass.net" target="_new"><b><font color=green>MY SYSTEM</b></font color=green></A>
June 25, 2003 1:42:09 PM

the problems are NOT the fans. Is there someting to do about the HD noise. I have seen a noise reducer for 5400 rmp HD's but not for 7200 rmp hd's. Some of my HD's are already 42'C under good cooling conditions, and i dont want to risk a teperature above the 50'C.

<font color=red>duk-tape is like the force, it has a bright side and a dark side, and it keeps the universe together.</font color=red>
!