Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Pre-POST 4-12 Minutes: GA-MA78GMS2H + 8GB RAM

Last response: in Motherboards
Share
August 8, 2009 5:10:16 PM

The Problem:
Cold Start Power ON until POST Beep = 3 to 12 minutes; average 4½ minutes
— Yes, that is BEFORE the system continues to Bootscreen and on up into Windows
— Other times are slow but more acceptable: Bootscreen to Welcome = 40 sec; Welcome to XP = 40 sec; XP Desktop to totally ready = 1¼ minutes to 2½ minutes
— Windows itself works normally. No blue screens, no crashes
— Restarts initiated from Windows work perfectly
— All POST beeps are single beeps, BUT they usually (not always) seem to trip or stumble, like be-BEEP! However, never multi-beeps, definitely

I built this system 8 months ago, and this problem began right away. Anyone care to solve it? :fou: 

— Following over-counter exchange, this is the second ver 1.1 mobo that's done it; I can RMA but don't want to go for a 3rd
— The G.Skill RAM technician says the RAM must be working right, because once the system is in Windows, it seems to work fine
— The system has been tested without RAM, without drives, without USBs

Here it is:
_____________________________________

Self-built (Nov 2008)
CPU = AMD Athlon 64 x2 5600+
Mainboard = AMD AM2+ Gigabyte GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1 (BIOS F8; newest)
RAM = 8GB (2 kits @ 4GB each) of G.Skill DDR2-1000 (F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 x2 CL5-5-5-15) — runs as DDR2-800
Heatsink = Xigmatek HDT-S1283 (Arctic Silver 5)
PSU = Corsair HX520W, calculated right for the load, and tests working OK

Storage = 1.7 TB: (3x 500GB SATA + 320GB PATA HDDs)
3 Opticals: (SATA Pioneer DVR-212D + PATA LiteOn/Sony CRX-230EE + External USB Samsung DVD-RW)
Floppy

ATI Radeon HD4670
LG W2242TQ
Altec Lansing 5.1

XP64. No gaming; simultaneous use of some big programs
_____________________________________

Note: Trfc AUTO = 127.5. As soon as I go for MANUAL and select lower or higher (such as 195ns), the system is likely to POST in shorter time but always with a CMOS Error! popup. (I can ignore that by selecting HALT ON NO ERRORS, but that isn't solving anything.)

— Yes, I would love to trade it for something that would work, but NCIX points out the original purchase is over 1 year old. Gigabyte would RMA, but ignored my asking whether I could trade up to a motherboard more likely to function properly.

Thank you.
a c 177 V Motherboard
August 8, 2009 5:24:12 PM

As your 'entry to windows' times look pretty unremarkable, my guess is that something is 'hanging' the hardware discovery phase of the POST; do you, by any chance, have a Seagate drive hooked up? There are a batch of 'em out there that have a known firmware problem, and that's one of the exact symptoms... If so, take a peek here:
http://seagate.custkb.com/seagate/crm/selfservice/searc...
Be careful with following their directions, use their ID tool, as flashing firmware onto the wrong drives will kill them!
August 8, 2009 5:33:21 PM

Thank you, bilbat. Yes, I did do the firmware update for the Seagates some time ago, but I think I'll follow through everything again—I'll disconnect all the drives again too. That didn't work before, but I agree that the "entry to Windows" times are slow. (You hear the Windows welcome music during the Welcome screen display; should be with the XP desktop display.)

EDIT: I have
1 x PATA Seagate ST3320620A = Firmware 3AAC
3 x SATA Seagate ST3500320AS = Firmware SD1A ~ This is the firmware update that Seagate provided to correct the famous glitch a few months ago
a c 177 V Motherboard
August 8, 2009 5:54:00 PM

I had a pair of SG 1.5 TBs, one had bad firmware, one didn't - go figure. Mine also took, I believe, three tries to finally burn the correction - as far as I could tell, absolutely no difference between the times that failed, and the time it worked! Damned peculiar - I can tell you, it sure took a monster bite out of Seagate's credibility in the marketplace - lord knows I'd think long and hard about ever buying another...

'Nother thing came to mind - do you have a lot of USB stuff plugged in? GBs are notoriously finicky about USB:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261902-30-gigabyte-ta...
and I've seen these problems over and over, each one wierder than the last...
August 8, 2009 6:10:55 PM

Yes, I have a number of USBs. I did remove them before and tested without them, too, but I might as well try again.

I have a PCI-card with 5 USB slots, 1 inside the case. I keep an 8GB USB stick on the inside-the-case slot, and I use it for important WORD backups etc. The other slots have my 2 USB mouses, a scanner, and a PC camera.

And I have a USB hub plugged in to a USB slot on the case (= mainboard). That hub is always empty.

On bootup I'm shown a full screen of devices which I could check, so I'll do that. By chance I had read your "should be stickied" mention of USBs earlier this morning. (We buy these things to do these tasks; then we disable them so they'll work. If your car doesn't drive smoothly, just don't change gears, and you'll be fine. Oh, also disable the brakes. They cause LOTS of problems.) Gr-r-r-r-r. . . . :) 
a c 177 V Motherboard
August 8, 2009 7:45:23 PM

Quote:
(We buy these things to do these tasks; then we disable them so they'll work. If your car doesn't drive smoothly, just don't change gears, and you'll be fine. Oh, also disable the brakes. They cause LOTS of problems.) Gr-r-r-r-r. . .

:pt1cable:  Ain't it great?!?!
At least we don't have to buy 'option packages' - you want a steering wheel with that? Oh my, you'll have to get the 'driver option packege three' - lessee, that includes gold plated wheel nuts, and, oh, a half-barrel cooler in the trunk... And a cigarette lighter? - Um, that's the 'smokers package', which includes an ashtray replacing one of the seventeen cup holders, as well as the part-time employment of a 'political correctness monitor' to sit in your back seat and beat you about the head and shoulders for being a smoker...
a b V Motherboard
August 8, 2009 8:12:54 PM

Definately has to be a HDD issue.
August 8, 2009 11:51:25 PM

i've had issues with legacy USB enabled......chances are you aren't using usb 1.1 devices anyway
August 9, 2009 5:27:34 AM

@bilbat, agreed, but your 2 x 1.5TB HDDs are really a beautiful config. Now that you have managed to make them talk pretty, if they ain't misbehavin', I'd suggest you allow cautious optimism toward Seagate. Assuming your 3TB of storage is just ducky now, it may be that Seagate simply stumbled but didn't fall. You can always invoice Seagate for your time—er, we CAN do that, can't we?—at, say, bankers' rates. I think.

@daship and
@uh_no,
thanks, and I'm considering your suggestions in BIOS adjustments and also stripping the HDDs—again.
a c 177 V Motherboard
August 9, 2009 3:50:39 PM

Quote:
bilbat, agreed, but your 2 x 1.5TB HDDs are really a beautiful config. Now that you have managed to make them talk pretty, if they ain't misbehavin', I'd suggest you allow cautious optimism toward Seagate. Assuming your 3TB of storage is just ducky now, it may be that Seagate simply stumbled but didn't fall.


Actually, they never worked for what I bought them for at all, but that was a calculated risk on my part, anyway. I got them to do a cocatenated array ('almost a RAID0') on a USB NAS to hang off my router. USB enclosure said 1TB drives - bet, on my part, was that anything that would 'understand' drive geometries of 1TB would 'get' 1.5s - and it did, so long as I was hooked up to a computer; put it on the router and kaput! Found out from experience it would only work with one drive connected, and then poorly. Next thing I learned was router 'officially' only supports 500GB - blah! Found out by experiment, that if I only format 1,023GB, it will, for the main part, stay working - only caveat is, it can't accept any file over 4Gb (and was meant to be a media server, so that's a BIG caveat!) Router hardware is pretty much the best made - Cisco/LinkSys WRT-600n - dual band G&N, high power, fast; router firmware was written to specifications in Chinese by the Elbonians :kaola:  Have transitioned, several times, to DD-WRT, and fiddled endlessly trying to get Samba disk server to work - no luck - think it's time to try again, as, in writing this, I discovered a whole new major rev level of Samba has been released! So, one 1.5 wound up in the NAS where it was intended, but only two-thirds 'used'; other one went on GB mobo, where it is backup for eight Velociraptor RAID0 partitions - I treat them as 'volatile storage' - when happy with my current 'state of installs', I image 'em to the Seagate...
August 9, 2009 4:54:22 PM

Well, what good have the Elbonians OR the Lower Slobbovians ever done for us? :bounce:  Not that I mind them, you know—some of my best friends are from Slobbovia, and I used to date a very pretty Elbonian lady. The trouble with the world is too many variables, if you ask me. I don't know whether to RMA my mobo or my RAM or my cat. Well, I don't have a cat, but whatever. I mean, it's all, like, totahlly RMA-mode, y'know? That's why I never deal with the Elbonians any more.

My girlfriend said she meant "superlative" when she called me "superfluous". Should I worry?

I really hope the whole universe isn't really a computer like mine, and that Somebody out there isn't just pressing buttons like I am, and we are all just living in the mercy of His random tweaks.

It's raining today, too.
a c 177 V Motherboard
August 9, 2009 7:15:09 PM

Quote:
Well, what good have the Elbonians OR the Lower Slobbovians ever done for us?

Well, the one thing offhand that I can think of is that they've provided endless yuks in Dilbert; Dilbert reports to Pointy-Haired-Boss "We saved a million dollars farming out the new sotware to the Elbonians", "But it cost us five million to fix it when they were done...", "...and the whole quality assurance staff has quit to become mimes!", Pointy-haired-Boss: "Blame the mimes, they won't talk!"; Pointy-Haired-Boss to Dilbert "You're flying all day Sunday to go teach the Elbonians COBOL", Dilbert "...but I don't know COBOL!", Boss "Here's a manual - read it on the plane..."; the really hilarious part of these is that more than half of them are suggested by people's 'real-life' (well, we call it that, anyhow) experiences - and the statistics seem good to me, 'cause, as I read them, every other one is something that's happened to me!

Quote:
I don't know whether to RMA my mobo or my RAM or my cat. Well, I don't have a cat, but whatever.

Maybe you can exchange the MOBO for a cat - at least it'll catch mice! ...or MudWeasels!

Quote:
My girlfriend said she meant "superlative" when she called me "superfluous". Should I worry?

...Hmmm - Maybe MOBO for cat and new girlfriend?

Quote:
I really hope the whole universe isn't really a computer like mine, and that Somebody out there isn't just pressing buttons like I am, and we are all just living in the mercy of His random tweaks.

You know, one of the most profound (and funny) things I've seen in the media lately is the little vignettes in 'Men in Black II', where J gets a tiny universe of worshippers in a train station locker ("All Hail J!!"), and at the end, they open a door, where they see the real universe's train station, in which they are the 'locker inhabitants'!
!