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VA-503+ IRQ sharing

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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 15, 2005 3:10:57 AM

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

I read somewhere that the AGP slot, and PCI slot #1 share the same
interrupt.

Does anyone know if any of the other slots share interrupts? (i.e. PCI
slot #3 and ISA slot #1)?

I'm debating on whether to spend more money on this board (Promise
ATA/100 card and USB 2.0 card), or to just invest the money on newer
components and sell this one off.

Thanks...Brad

More about : 503 irq sharing

Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 15, 2005 5:15:06 AM

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

Brad Clarke wrote:
> I read somewhere that the AGP slot, and PCI slot #1 share the same
> interrupt.

Yep. It's in the FIC FAQ:
http://www.fic.com.tw/support/motherboard/faq.aspx?mode...

> Does anyone know if any of the other slots share interrupts? (i.e. PCI
> slot #3 and ISA slot #1)?

Isn't that pretty much academic, since you can't physically use both of
these slots at once?

> I'm debating on whether to spend more money on this board (Promise
> ATA/100 card and USB 2.0 card), or to just invest the money on newer
> components and sell this one off.
>
> Thanks...Brad

I doubt you'll get rich selling off components of this vintage. What's
the intended use for this machine? How many cards would you need to
cram into the case? What OS do you envision using?

I'm reading this group because I'm in the final stages of upgrading my
wife's 503+-based machine (1.15JK35 BIOS, PCB rev. 1.1A, K6-2/450, AT
PSU) from W98SE to Windows 2000 SP4. If you want to know how I got it
working, read on! Hardware: ATI Rage AGP-2X video, Creative SB PCI64
sound, Netgear FA311 10/100 ethernet, ACARD AEC6880 ATA-133/RAID
controller with mirrored IBM Deskstars as boot device. No ISA cards.

It was a struggle getting all three PCI cards to function in Win2K with
the AGP video adapter present--the slot order I used for Win98 did not
work at all, and in fact FIC's FAQ advises leaving PCI #1 empty.
Several times I would get the network card "installed" but couldn't ping
anything; and adding the third PCI card usually meant a hang just after
the logon screen.

I almost gave up in frustration, but I put in a few more hours of
methodical attempts, wrote down everything I did, and finally got it.
It's no 3GHz screamer, and it could use some more RAM, but all in all
it's a pretty snappy machine and entirely adequate for word processing,
e-mail, internet etc. I'm certainly not sorry I stuck with it, and I'm
sure my wife will be thrilled if I ever stop tweaking it and let her use
it ;-)

I have no idea if my solution is generalizable, but here's the synopsis
I was planning to post; I might as well do it here as anywhere:

--Swapped the two PCI cards nearest the AGP slot. I arrived at this
much later after trying all sorts of permutations. The key was getting
the same IRQ assignments that worked in Win98--which is hard to do
because you can't just turn off automatic config and manually set them
in Win2K/XP. I don't know whether the relative slot order or the
characteristics of the individual cards are the critical thing
here...but I got good results with the RAID controller in slot #1 (IRQ
10, soundcard in #2 (IRQ 11), NIC in #3 (IRQ 5). I had #1 and #2
reversed in Win98; the controller was a Diamond FirePort SCSI.

--In BIOS: Set PnP OS to "No", kept the auto-assigned IRQs (you might
have to go with manual if you have legacy ISA cards). I stuck with the
10,11,5... ordering, which is what worked in W98. Turned off all power
mgmt stuff. Disabled 'assign IRQ for VGA'. Disabled serial port #2,
parallel port and USB, all of which seemed to be preferentially grabbing
IRQs I thought I needed.

--Installed Win2K (or XP) with the Standard PC HAL by hitting F7 (or F5)
at first setup bluescreen when it asked for mass storage drivers. F7 is
silent; F5 brings up a menu. (You can also then hit F6 if you have a
RAID/SCSI/ATA133 controller to install).

--Turned off IRQ Steering in Dev Mgr -> Computer -> Properties. What
the BIOS assigns, stays. (I did this early, and now that everything
works I'm too chicken to turn it back on to find out if this step is
really necessary.)

--I had USB disabled in the BIOS; when I turned it back on it took IRQ 7
but showed up as "unsupported VIA USB host controller". I read mixed
reports on getting USB functionality from this board--many reports of
instability. I went for "update driver", "show all compatible drivers",
and chose "VIA Standard USB host controller". It installed the usb root
hub device, and my Olympus digital cam works now, at least. No
noticeable instability problems thus far!

Sorry to hijack the thread--but I hope this detailed account helps
someone get a W2K or XP upgrade going on the 503+.

--Adam Cole [posting from my wife's machine]
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 15, 2005 1:25:37 PM

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

On Sat, 15 Jan 2005 02:15:06 -0800, Jean Cole
<foozle@foozlesnark.invalid> wrote:

>>Brad Clarke wrote:
>>>
>>> Does anyone know if any of the other slots share interrupts? (i.e. PCI
>>> slot #3 and ISA slot #1)?
>>
>>Isn't that pretty much academic, since you can't physically use both of
>>these slots at once?
I was referring to whether PCI slot 3 shared an IRQ with one of the ISA
slots.

My PCI NIC would not work on this machine with W2K (but the NIC worked
fine with Linux), so I have an ISA NIC in ISA slot 3 and all is fine.

>>I doubt you'll get rich selling off components of this vintage.
Considering I only paid for the board with 2 boxes of Tim Horton's
timbits for it, I'm not asking much for it :) 

Brad
Related resources
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 15, 2005 3:53:10 PM

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

Brad Clarke wrote:
>Jean Cole wrote:
>>Brad Clarke wrote:
>>>Does anyone know if any of the other slots share interrupts? (i.e. PCI
>>>slot #3 and ISA slot #1)?
>>
>>Isn't that pretty much academic, since you can't physically use both of
>>these slots at once?
>
> I was referring to whether PCI slot 3 shared an IRQ with one of the ISA
> slots.

I understand--I assume because of that physical limitation that PCI#3
and ISA#1 have to be functionally the same slot, bus-wise, and share an
IRQ. (I don't know for *sure* if either of the other ISAs shares
resources with PCI #3, but I don't see how they really could, since most
ISA cards weren't exactly cooperative in that sense.)

> My PCI NIC would not work on this machine with W2K (but the NIC worked
> fine with Linux), so I have an ISA NIC in ISA slot 3 and all is fine.

See, I'd about concluded the same for my PCI NIC--worked in W98, M$
upgrade advisor said "This NIC isn't supported", when I did get it to
show in W2K devmgr (sans yellow '!'), it wouldn't ping anything.

In my desperation I had actually hauled out my old 1989-vintage 3com
etherlink II TP (a 10baseT full-length ISA board replete with jumpers,
ahh!) and was contemplating using that instead. But when I resolved the
other bus/IRQ/BIOS conflicts, the PCI NIC started working fine.

> Considering I only paid for the board with 2 boxes of Tim Horton's
> timbits for it, I'm not asking much for it :) 

Well, we don't have Timmy's in California, so I could only pay you in
"Freedom" fries. Regular, or extra crispy?

Adam Cole
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 16, 2005 2:35:01 PM

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

I wrote:

> It was a struggle getting all three PCI cards to function in Win2K
> [...]

Embarrassing to admit--but upon returning this machine to the old Win98
configuration temporarily the NIC stopped working again. After a lot of
grief I found that the mainboard was poorly supported from beneath,
which made it hard for the various cards (PCI #3 especially) to seat
properly in the slots.

This proved to be a subtler issue than I might have expected, since
Windows may "install" (or at least recognize) a partially seated card on
this board, possibly assigning it an IRQ--it just won't work, even
though dev mgr shows no troubles! The DOS diagnostic utility that came
with my NIC was helpful in troubleshooting this, once I remembered I had
it.

Anyway, it's likely that many of the "IRQ" problems and boot-up freezes
I was dealing with in my first post were in fact intermittent mechanical
problems related to this. So all that bit about swapping cards between
slots was likely incidental: I was just lucky enough to get the NIC
fully seated on the last go-round.

Still...it _is_ possible on VA-503+ 1.1A to use AGP video and 3 PCI
cards under Win2K with AGP/PCI #1 sharing an IRQ, whatever FIC's FAQ may
say to the contrary.

Adam Cole
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 17, 2005 3:58:30 PM

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

Actually, ISA slots do not share IRQs with anything. The ISA cards
themselves determine the IRQ in use. This is why there is the PnP/PCI
Configuration section of the BIOS has a place to reserve IRQs for ISA
slots... so that the PCI cards do not try to use them!

As for PnP ISA cards, the BIOS is supposed to assign them an IRQ, and
automatically not allow any PCI cards to use that IRQ.

--Alex



Brad Clarke wrote:
> I read somewhere that the AGP slot, and PCI slot #1 share the same
> interrupt.
>
> Does anyone know if any of the other slots share interrupts? (i.e. PCI
> slot #3 and ISA slot #1)?
>
> I'm debating on whether to spend more money on this board (Promise
> ATA/100 card and USB 2.0 card), or to just invest the money on newer
> components and sell this one off.
>
> Thanks...Brad
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
January 19, 2005 3:54:08 AM

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

Interesting. I'm having problems getting a PCI USB 2.0 card working. It's
recognized by windows but dosn't function because none of the optical mice I've
used light up at all when connected to this card. I'll have another look and
see if the card is fully seated or not -- especially now that I'm having
problems w/my PCI NIC.

>I wrote:
>
>> It was a struggle getting all three PCI cards to function in Win2K
> > [...]
>
>Embarrassing to admit--but upon returning this machine to the old Win98
>configuration temporarily the NIC stopped working again. After a lot of
>grief I found that the mainboard was poorly supported from beneath,
>which made it hard for the various cards (PCI #3 especially) to seat
>properly in the slots.
>
>This proved to be a subtler issue than I might have expected, since
>Windows may "install" (or at least recognize) a partially seated card on
>this board, possibly assigning it an IRQ--it just won't work, even
>though dev mgr shows no troubles! The DOS diagnostic utility that came
>with my NIC was helpful in troubleshooting this, once I remembered I had
>it.
>
>Anyway, it's likely that many of the "IRQ" problems and boot-up freezes
>I was dealing with in my first post were in fact intermittent mechanical
>problems related to this. So all that bit about swapping cards between
>slots was likely incidental: I was just lucky enough to get the NIC
>fully seated on the last go-round.
>
>Still...it _is_ possible on VA-503+ 1.1A to use AGP video and 3 PCI
>cards under Win2K with AGP/PCI #1 sharing an IRQ, whatever FIC's FAQ may
>say to the contrary.
>
>Adam Cole
>
>

-Bill (remove "botizer" to reply via email)
!