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Help - New A8N-SLI Deluxe freezes/lockups

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August 21, 2005 8:03:24 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

I WAS building a new system - an AMD 64 939 3500+, an ASUS A8N-SLI
Deluxe MB, and a Sapphire 300SE PCI-e video card. Obviously, I was not
planning to do SLI until I can afford it ;)  I love the features, but
this Asus board has me pulling my hair out.

I already had two 74GB raptors from another system, plus four 250GB
SATA drives, Lian Li 2000 Case, two sticks of Corsair XMS 2-2-2-5 512
MB each. My power supply, also from another system, is an Enermax
EG-465P-VE. It is a 20-pin power supply, I plugged it in without using
an adaptor. Also added a floppy, a Toshiba dvd-rom, and a NEC dvd
burner.

The ram went into the blue slots on the board. The optical drives were
set as master/slave on the secondary PATA connector. The raptors were
set as RAID 0 on the nvidia bus, the four 250's were eventually hooked
up to the SiL 3114, and I created a raid0 array there too.

XP32 SP2 went on the Raptors, then nvidia 6.66 drivers, then all
windows updates. I did not overclock anything. Ran memtest 3.2 for 12
hours, no errors. I have the stock retail boxed CPU cooler for the
3500+, the CPU ran at 37C, with no side panels on the case.

All was fine until the system started freezing when doing tasks like
getting articles with Newsleecher, or running Quick Par on dvd images.
Finally, the system froze when just downloading binaries, running
windows explorer and IE.

I always disable system restore and a few other unneeded services on
all XP installations. I did not install any AV. I checked the system
with Spybot, then installed Symantec AV 10 to check it - no virii or
trojans.

I unplugged the 250's, thinking maybe the Enermax might not be strong
enough - although it ran ten hard drives before for me in an NF3 DFI
Lanparty board. But that was not it. Even with only the two Raptors, I
was still getting freezes/lockups

I cleared the raptors, installed XP again, this time skipping all the
Asus utilities that come on the driver cd, thinking that may be a
problem. I also updated the bios from 1011 to 1013. This motherboard
came with the new chipset fan that runs at 5000-5200 rpm.

Anyway, same problem, it still locks up. I need this computer to run
reliably 24/7, downloading and posting binaries, burning dvd images,
creating parity archives, etc - but it can't run normally for more
than a couple hours without locking up. I am beginning to think I
should have stayed with DFI. I put my DFI Lanparty NF3 3200+, Radeon
9200, back together, using the same setup - except the four 250 GB
drives are hooked to a SiL 3114 PCI card in Raid 0. I have never had a
problem with that board, but felt it was a good time to upgrade to a
socket 939, so I could get an X2 processor and play with an SLI setup
when they come down in price more.

Questions: Are the power specs on the Enermax sufficient for my Asus
non-SLI setup? It is supposed to be a 431-watt supply.

On the sticker, they read:

+3.3V = 38a
+5 V= 44a
+12V = 20a
-5V = 2a
-12V = 1a
+5VSb = 2.2a

Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
board??

I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
accurate? Does that Asus board have a problem with Corsair XMS memory?
I tried several power settings on the memory - 2.6, 2.7, but it made
no difference in the stability of the system.

If not RAM or Power supply, then what? Any ideas? Should I shell out
$150+ for a new 24-pin Enermax SLI-rated power supply? Or should I
just order a DFI board? I can't get my money back on the ASUS, all I
could do is RMA it for another one that is supposedly remanufactured.
Thanks.

Charlie
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
August 22, 2005 3:31:48 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

Charlie wrote:
> planning to do SLI until I can afford it ;)  I love the features, but
> this Asus board has me pulling my hair out.

> EG-465P-VE. It is a 20-pin power supply, I plugged it in without using
> an adaptor. Also added a floppy, a Toshiba dvd-rom, and a NEC dvd
> burner.

> Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
> board??

> I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
> accurate?

Sure, there's a 24-pin connector on the board, trying to force you to
get a power supply with an extra 12V rail to make sure there's enough
power to all parts of the system. But hey, you just plug in the old
20-pin (without so much as an adapter you can buy for 10$ or less),
and then you complain about the motherboard behaving badly. What did
you expect?

Get an adapter. If that doesn't work (it's a crutch really, seeing as
your PSU only has 1 12V rail), get a PSU with a real 24 pin connector
and separate 12V rails. You need one ayway, as you say you want to do
SLI in the future. Just forget about that with your current PSU.

You already systematically eliminated most of the other causes, so
what's keeping you?
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
August 22, 2005 3:31:49 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

I was having the same type of issue. Do you have a digital multimeter to
test your PSU to make sure you're getting the proper voltages on each rail?
That's what I would check. I had an Antec TrueControl 550W PSU and
basically I never hooked up the control panel that can control the voltage.
So what happend was my PSU was running at 95% of the rated power. I have
had it like this for a while now but I guess the low voltages had finally
caught up to me. Ever since installation that control panel I have not had
the system lock up and I believe your issue has to do with the power supply.
If you can get your hands on a DMM and test the voltages under full load and
idle that would be great. If the voltages are normal and are exact, then I
would rule that out and look for the next possible culprit.

--
Nocturnal


"Friso Gosliga" <n@n.nn> wrote in message news:4308F2C4.7050505@n.nn...
> Charlie wrote:
>> planning to do SLI until I can afford it ;)  I love the features, but
>> this Asus board has me pulling my hair out.
>
>> EG-465P-VE. It is a 20-pin power supply, I plugged it in without using
>> an adaptor. Also added a floppy, a Toshiba dvd-rom, and a NEC dvd
>> burner.
>
>> Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
>> board??
>
>> I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
>> accurate?
>
> Sure, there's a 24-pin connector on the board, trying to force you to get
> a power supply with an extra 12V rail to make sure there's enough power to
> all parts of the system. But hey, you just plug in the old 20-pin (without
> so much as an adapter you can buy for 10$ or less), and then you complain
> about the motherboard behaving badly. What did you expect?
>
> Get an adapter. If that doesn't work (it's a crutch really, seeing as your
> PSU only has 1 12V rail), get a PSU with a real 24 pin connector and
> separate 12V rails. You need one ayway, as you say you want to do SLI in
> the future. Just forget about that with your current PSU.
>
> You already systematically eliminated most of the other causes, so what's
> keeping you?
Related resources
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
August 22, 2005 3:31:50 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

I would add :

What does chkdsk find ?
Test all your drives.


"Nocturnal" <nocturnal@anonymous.com> a écrit dans le message de news:
hl7Oe.4169$HR5.986@tornado.socal.rr.com...
>I was having the same type of issue. Do you have a digital multimeter to
>test your PSU to make sure you're getting the proper voltages on each rail?
>That's what I would check. I had an Antec TrueControl 550W PSU and
>basically I never hooked up the control panel that can control the voltage.
>So what happend was my PSU was running at 95% of the rated power. I have
>had it like this for a while now but I guess the low voltages had finally
>caught up to me. Ever since installation that control panel I have not had
>the system lock up and I believe your issue has to do with the power
>supply. If you can get your hands on a DMM and test the voltages under full
>load and idle that would be great. If the voltages are normal and are
>exact, then I would rule that out and look for the next possible culprit.
>
> --
> Nocturnal
>
>
> "Friso Gosliga" <n@n.nn> wrote in message news:4308F2C4.7050505@n.nn...
>> Charlie wrote:
>>> planning to do SLI until I can afford it ;)  I love the features, but
>>> this Asus board has me pulling my hair out.
>>
>>> EG-465P-VE. It is a 20-pin power supply, I plugged it in without using
>>> an adaptor. Also added a floppy, a Toshiba dvd-rom, and a NEC dvd
>>> burner.
>>
>>> Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
>>> board??
>>
>>> I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
>>> accurate?
>>
>> Sure, there's a 24-pin connector on the board, trying to force you to get
>> a power supply with an extra 12V rail to make sure there's enough power
>> to all parts of the system. But hey, you just plug in the old 20-pin
>> (without so much as an adapter you can buy for 10$ or less), and then you
>> complain about the motherboard behaving badly. What did you expect?
>>
>> Get an adapter. If that doesn't work (it's a crutch really, seeing as
>> your PSU only has 1 12V rail), get a PSU with a real 24 pin connector and
>> separate 12V rails. You need one ayway, as you say you want to do SLI in
>> the future. Just forget about that with your current PSU.
>>
>> You already systematically eliminated most of the other causes, so what's
>> keeping you?
>
>
August 22, 2005 11:13:42 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

In article <mhihg11marr0injamu3d6g6vvvco4v2puj@4ax.com>, Charlie
<charlie@nospam.now> wrote:

> I WAS building a new system - an AMD 64 939 3500+, an ASUS A8N-SLI
> Deluxe MB, and a Sapphire 300SE PCI-e video card. Obviously, I was not
> planning to do SLI until I can afford it ;)  I love the features, but
> this Asus board has me pulling my hair out.
>
> I already had two 74GB raptors from another system, plus four 250GB
> SATA drives, Lian Li 2000 Case, two sticks of Corsair XMS 2-2-2-5 512
> MB each. My power supply, also from another system, is an Enermax
> EG-465P-VE. It is a 20-pin power supply, I plugged it in without using
> an adaptor. Also added a floppy, a Toshiba dvd-rom, and a NEC dvd
> burner.
>
> The ram went into the blue slots on the board. The optical drives were
> set as master/slave on the secondary PATA connector. The raptors were
> set as RAID 0 on the nvidia bus, the four 250's were eventually hooked
> up to the SiL 3114, and I created a raid0 array there too.
>
> XP32 SP2 went on the Raptors, then nvidia 6.66 drivers, then all
> windows updates. I did not overclock anything. Ran memtest 3.2 for 12
> hours, no errors. I have the stock retail boxed CPU cooler for the
> 3500+, the CPU ran at 37C, with no side panels on the case.
>
> All was fine until the system started freezing when doing tasks like
> getting articles with Newsleecher, or running Quick Par on dvd images.
> Finally, the system froze when just downloading binaries, running
> windows explorer and IE.
>
> I always disable system restore and a few other unneeded services on
> all XP installations. I did not install any AV. I checked the system
> with Spybot, then installed Symantec AV 10 to check it - no virii or
> trojans.
>
> I unplugged the 250's, thinking maybe the Enermax might not be strong
> enough - although it ran ten hard drives before for me in an NF3 DFI
> Lanparty board. But that was not it. Even with only the two Raptors, I
> was still getting freezes/lockups
>
> I cleared the raptors, installed XP again, this time skipping all the
> Asus utilities that come on the driver cd, thinking that may be a
> problem. I also updated the bios from 1011 to 1013. This motherboard
> came with the new chipset fan that runs at 5000-5200 rpm.
>
> Anyway, same problem, it still locks up. I need this computer to run
> reliably 24/7, downloading and posting binaries, burning dvd images,
> creating parity archives, etc - but it can't run normally for more
> than a couple hours without locking up. I am beginning to think I
> should have stayed with DFI. I put my DFI Lanparty NF3 3200+, Radeon
> 9200, back together, using the same setup - except the four 250 GB
> drives are hooked to a SiL 3114 PCI card in Raid 0. I have never had a
> problem with that board, but felt it was a good time to upgrade to a
> socket 939, so I could get an X2 processor and play with an SLI setup
> when they come down in price more.
>
> Questions: Are the power specs on the Enermax sufficient for my Asus
> non-SLI setup? It is supposed to be a 431-watt supply.
>
> On the sticker, they read:
>
> +3.3V = 38a
> +5 V= 44a
> +12V = 20a
> -5V = 2a
> -12V = 1a
> +5VSb = 2.2a
>
> Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
> board??
>
> I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
> accurate? Does that Asus board have a problem with Corsair XMS memory?
> I tried several power settings on the memory - 2.6, 2.7, but it made
> no difference in the stability of the system.
>
> If not RAM or Power supply, then what? Any ideas? Should I shell out
> $150+ for a new 24-pin Enermax SLI-rated power supply? Or should I
> just order a DFI board? I can't get my money back on the ASUS, all I
> could do is RMA it for another one that is supposedly remanufactured.
> Thanks.
>
> Charlie

The debugging process:

1) Collect as much data about the system as possible. Asus Probe for
voltage measurements. CPUZ from www.cpuid.com , to verify that
the BIOS has set up the hardware properly. Everest Home Edition
(lavalys.com) to list hardware or bus devices.

2) Find as many free programs as you can, to test the system. You've
already used memtest86+ from memtest.org . You can also use
Prime95 "torture test" option (from mersenne.org). Using some
version of 3DMark (I use 3DMark2001SE free download), can push
some info through the video card. Observe the symptoms when those
tests run. If the system won't freeze or crash with just those
tests running, it increases the odds that this is a software
or driver problem of some sort.

3) Having tried those steps (looking for a simple fix), the next
step is to simplify the system to minimum hardware. A CDrom
drive, a single hard drive, a floppy (as it doesn't draw power
wnen not used), one stick of RAM in B1, CPU, motheboard, PSU,
and so on. Preferably an IDE hard drive, so you are not dealing
with any SATA I/SATA II issues. Install the OS and try again.
Add stuff back to the system, one piece at a time, and see when
the problems come back.

Another kind of test, is to build up the system while the
motherboard rests on some cardboard. On my last two systems,
I build them up outside the case first, verified all the
hardware worked, then installed all the components in the
case. That can make testing a bit easier, but you have to
be careful not to jiggle any plugin cards (like the video
card) while testing that way.

4) Final step is the act of desperation. Substitution of pieces
of hardware, one at a time. The idea in the three previous
steps, is to have a reason to suspect a particular piece of
hardware. You don't really want to use step (4), because
randomly swapping pieces of hardware is an expensive way to
do it. And, it means you've failed as a debugger :-(

For software/OS/driver issues, you'll need to visit the private
forums. Or, use a search engine, and try and find the appropriate
forums that way. Here is an example, found using "a8n-sli freeze"
on Altavista.

http://forums.pcper.com/showthread.php?t=380940

"I wanted to follow up on this. It seems for the first time
in weeks I've gotten my system stable enough to survive a night
without freezing. The 2 main things I have changed is not using
the Nvidia Ethernet, and disableing TCQ on my NvRaid'ed Maxtor
300 gig drives."

Do you have anyway to verify the chipset temperature ? With that
nasty fan on there, I bet the Nvidia chip would get pretty hot
if the cooling wasn't working right.

Paul
August 23, 2005 11:09:55 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 23:31:48 +0200, Friso Gosliga <n@n.nn> wrote:

>Charlie wrote:
>> planning to do SLI until I can afford it ;)  I love the features, but
>> this Asus board has me pulling my hair out.
>
>> EG-465P-VE. It is a 20-pin power supply, I plugged it in without using
>> an adaptor. Also added a floppy, a Toshiba dvd-rom, and a NEC dvd
>> burner.
>
>> Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
>> board??
>
>> I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
>> accurate?
>
>Sure, there's a 24-pin connector on the board, trying to force you to
>get a power supply with an extra 12V rail to make sure there's enough
>power to all parts of the system. But hey, you just plug in the old
>20-pin (without so much as an adapter you can buy for 10$ or less),
>and then you complain about the motherboard behaving badly. What did
>you expect?
>
>Get an adapter. If that doesn't work (it's a crutch really, seeing as
>your PSU only has 1 12V rail), get a PSU with a real 24 pin connector
>and separate 12V rails. You need one ayway, as you say you want to do
>SLI in the future. Just forget about that with your current PSU.
>
>You already systematically eliminated most of the other causes, so
>what's keeping you?

Thanks for the advice. What is keeping me now is lack of money. I will
let you know if it was the power supply in about three weeks ;) 

Charlie
August 23, 2005 11:17:39 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 22:35:57 GMT, "Nocturnal"
<nocturnal@anonymous.com> wrote:

>I was having the same type of issue. Do you have a digital multimeter to
>test your PSU to make sure you're getting the proper voltages on each rail?
>That's what I would check. I had an Antec TrueControl 550W PSU and
>basically I never hooked up the control panel that can control the voltage.
>So what happend was my PSU was running at 95% of the rated power. I have
>had it like this for a while now but I guess the low voltages had finally
>caught up to me. Ever since installation that control panel I have not had
>the system lock up and I believe your issue has to do with the power supply.
>If you can get your hands on a DMM and test the voltages under full load and
>idle that would be great. If the voltages are normal and are exact, then I
>would rule that out and look for the next possible culprit.

The 431w Enermax power supply is running my 3200+ DFI socket 754
system again - six hard drives, two optical drives, and rock-solid.

I am getting a new SLI-certified one for the new Asus in a few weeks,
since I will eventually need one anyway. I just hope that is the
problem.

Is Enermax still supposed to be among the better power supplies? Some
of the reviews on newegg.com are downright scary, but they could just
be trolls playing around to lower the ratings.

Charlie
August 23, 2005 11:20:03 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 20:42:32 -0400, "Natéag" <gaetanfo@videotron.ca>
wrote:

>I would add :
>
>What does chkdsk find ?
>Test all your drives.

All the drives test fine, thankfully. I haven't had a bad drive since
the days of the 80GB IBM Deathstar series. ;) 

Charlie
August 23, 2005 11:29:16 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On Mon, 22 Aug 2005 07:13:42 GMT, nospam@needed.com (Paul) wrote:

>http://forums.pcper.com/showthread.php?t=380940
>
> "I wanted to follow up on this. It seems for the first time
> in weeks I've gotten my system stable enough to survive a night
> without freezing. The 2 main things I have changed is not using
> the Nvidia Ethernet, and disableing TCQ on my NvRaid'ed Maxtor
> 300 gig drives."
>
>Do you have anyway to verify the chipset temperature ? With that
>nasty fan on there, I bet the Nvidia chip would get pretty hot
>if the cooling wasn't working right.
>
> Paul

Thanks for the advice Paul, it will come in handy in a few weeks when
I try again.

I tried both ethernet ports, they both seem to work, the computer
locked up when using either of them. And the Raptor's don't do TCQ.

One Asus utility is supposed to measure motherboard temp, I assume
this temp sensor is near the Northbridge? It was normal temp, 36C, one
less than the CPU.

Asus supposedly got the fan fiasco sorted, they have stopped shipping
the board with the loud 8000+ rpm fan that fails often, and now send
out the board with a slower, quieter, and I hope, more reliable 5000
rpm fan.

Charlie
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
August 25, 2005 1:59:06 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

"Charlie" <charlie@nospam.now> wrote:
> Questions: Are the power specs on the Enermax sufficient for my Asus
> non-SLI setup? It is supposed to be a 431-watt supply.
>
> On the sticker, they read:
>
> +3.3V = 38a
> +5 V= 44a
> +12V = 20a
> -5V = 2a
> -12V = 1a
> +5VSb = 2.2a

I run an Antec Sonata with the included 380W supply. It's spec are...
+3.3V 28A, +5V 35A, +12V 24A, -5V 0.5A, -12V 1A, +5VSB 2A
....so I've got 4A extra on +12V, which seems to be an important
voltage rail these days.

> Does the NF4/S939/3500+ use any more power than my old NF3/S754/3200+
> board??

I couldn't see the new system using much more, maybe a amp or 2.
Possibly the 3500+ Venice core uses less than the 3200+ which
would save a few amps on +12V.

> I read that getting a 24-pin adaptor was a waste of money, is that
> accurate?

Yes, unless you have dual core and/or SLI. The extra 4 pins simply
spreads the load over an extra set of contacts. Older dual CPU
boards with 20 pin connectors have been known to burn and melt the
ATX connector. However single core with single graphics card should
not pose a problem.

> Does that Asus board have a problem with Corsair XMS memory?
> I tried several power settings on the memory - 2.6, 2.7, but
> it made no difference in the stability of the system.

Make sure you are giving the memory enough voltage. I think
the board defaults to 2.5V for Vdimm, however my 2-2-2-5
memory is spec'ed to run from 2.7V to 2.9V. Does Corsair
give a voltage range in the spec sheet?

> If not RAM or Power supply, then what? Any ideas? Should I shell out
> $150+ for a new 24-pin Enermax SLI-rated power supply? Or should I
> just order a DFI board? I can't get my money back on the ASUS, all I
> could do is RMA it for another one that is supposedly remanufactured.
> Thanks.

Can you borrow/beg/steal a new PSU to test. Otherwise if it locks
up with only the graphics card and 2 raptors installed, I doubt
those would be a problem for your current PSU. RMA the board.
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
August 27, 2005 1:57:22 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

"Charlie" :

> XP32 SP2 went on the Raptors, then nvidia 6.66 drivers, then all
> windows updates.

Are you sure you need nvidia 6.66 drivers? I thought those were for 64 bit
OS... I had lots of problems like you did with the same motherboard, until I
switched to 6.65 nvidia drivers. Supposedly, the 6.65 are for 32 bit OS,
which is what XP32 is, after all.

Just give it a try, it might work :-)

Good luck,

somachi
!