I've searched and searched, read many threads, and been back and forth endlessly w/ Gigabyte and Gskill tech support. I even RMA'd my mobo, but the problem still presists-
This was my first computer build, and I've started out having problem getting it to post. I went through all the FAQ's, and narrowed it down to the ram not playing nice in dual channel setup, so I've been using the computer for the last couple of months with it in single channel mode (slots 1 & 2). But now I'm considering upgrading to more ram, and a 64 bit os, so I'll need to run all four slots, and this problem needs to be resolved before that can happen.
Here's what happens:
I'll call the memory sticks A & B, and the slots 1 - 4. If I have either mem card A or B in any ram slot 1 - 4 - (one stick only) it boots fine. If I have ram in slots 1 & 2, it boots fine. If I have ram in slots 1 & 3, or 2 & 4 (I don't think I ever tried slots 1 & 4), it fails to post, sort of. It will actually do funny things, like sometimes it'll fail to post out right, sometimes it'll get just past the post screen, and reboot. Sometimes it'll get to where it's actually booting the os, and reboot. But normally, the problem is the worst when it's cold. If it's warmed up, it will sometimes boot normally, other times after 3 or 4 reboots.
I set the ram voltage to 2.1, upped the mch core voltage, increased the ram reverence voltage, manually set it to 1066mhz, don't think I manually set the timings, not exactly sure how to do that. Does anyone know the secret recipe to get this combo to work? Should I just get dd2 800? Does it matter much having faster ram? My CPU is a core 2 duo, Wolfdale 3.0ghz, and I think 1333mhz fsb. Not 100% on that one. Would dd2 800 in a working dual channel be faster than the 1333mhz cpu fsb?? I'm a little confused on all of that... I think 8 gigs of ddr2 800 would be more expensive than just buying 4 more gigs of the same ddr2 1066 I already have.
What exact RAM kit do you have? I know you said you set the RAM voltage in the BIOS, but you should set the timings and voltage at the same time. You should manually set the RAM speed/timings/voltage to the recommended specs in the BIOS. Your RAM should have a sticker on the side that lists the correct values. You'll need to press "Ctrl + F1" when you get into the BIOS in order to set the RAM timings.
Have you run Memtest86+ overnight to test for RAM errors? Properly functioning RAM shouldn't get ANY errors in Memtest86+ with the voltage/timings/speed set correctly in the BIOS.
What is memtest86+? I've seen that mentioned a few times... Is it a windows program? Ubuntu is my primary OS, but I also dual boot vista when I need it. I also can run Vista in Virtualbox, but don't know if I can run a memtest form in there. Is there a Linux memtest type program?
A lot of this is 'canned' - so if you've seen parts of it before, skip ahead!
GA-EP45-UD3P E8400? E6850? to 3 or 3.6 GHz
Intel E8400/6850 1333FSB x9.0mult 3GHz .85-1.3625V
G.Skill F2-8500CL5D 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 memory: 5-5-5-15-2t nominal 2.1v
Gentle (but noticeable), no-risk, low-voltage Overclocking parameters are in italics...
If you haven't yet done it, pull out one stick, start with a BIOS' "Load Optimized Defaults"
Before we start ramping things up, I want to teach you a new skill involving the BIOS: Do the <DEL> at the boot to enter the BIOS;
notice, at the bottom, the <F11> "Save CMOS to BIOS" - hit this, and you should get a menu that will show a number (the count varies by BIOS) of empty 'slots', each of which will store an entire set of BIOS parameters, to be re-loaded from the corresponding <F12> "Load CMOS from BIOS"; this is a wonderful overclocker's feature. What I do with it, is to save my 'baseline' working parameters, so if I change something that 'irritates' the board, and forces a reset of all the parameters to defaults, or, even worse, get so screwed up I need to do a 'clear CMOS', I can get back to my starting point with no effort, and without having to remember 85 separate settings! Another thing it prevents is two hours' troubleshooting, having forgotten a change to a crucial parameter - like, "wait a minute - didn't I have the Trd at seven?!" It's pretty self-explanatory, and I alway urge people to start right away by taking the time to give the 'slots' names that mean something: in two hours, "Try2" and "Try3" will not be very helpful, but "450@+10MCH" and "450@+15MCH" will! Another use is for 'green' settings; overclocks, as a rule, do not 'play well' with green features, such as 'down-clocking' and 'down-volting'; with the storage slots, you can set up one profile, say "Green", with all the settings at 'stock' values, and all the 'green' features enabled; another, say "Balls2Wall" with a full overclock, and all the 'green' stuff turned off... Another neat feature of this 'slot' system is, for most BIOS, the mechanism itself will keep track of which ones have booted successfully, and how many times (up to, I believe, a max of five)!
On the "Advanced BIOS Features" page:
"CPU Enhanced Halt (C1E)" to "Disabled"
"C2/C2E State Support" to "Disabled"
"C4/C4E State Support" to "Disabled"
"CPU Thermal Monitor 2 (TM2)" to "Enabled"
"CPU EIST Function" to "Disabled"
"Virtualization Technology" to "Enabled" - this allows use of Win7's fantastic VirtualXp feature...
"Full Screen LOGO Show" to "Disabled"
On the "Integrated Peripherals" page:
Your manual shows "Legacy USB storage detect", but later BIOS say "USB Storage Function" - either way, set to "Disabled"
On the "Power Management Setup" page:
"ACPI Suspend Type" to "S1(POS)" (for now...)
"HPET Support" to "Enabled"
"HPET Mode" to whichever OS type you're running - "32-bit" if an x86 version, "64-bit" if an x64 version...
On the "MB Intelligent Tweaker(M.I.T.)" page:
"Robust Graphics Booster" to "Auto"
"CPU Clock Ratio" to "9"
"Fine CPU Clock Ratio" to ".0"
"CPU Frequency" - this one can't be set, it's calculated, and will change when we set the next few items...
******** Clock Chip Control ********
>>>>> Standard Clock Control
"CPU Host Clock Control" to "Enabled"
"CPU Host Frequency (Mhz)" to "334" "CPU Host Frequency (Mhz)" to "401"
"PCI Express Frequency (Mhz)" to "100" (not auto...)
"C.I.A.2" to "Disabled"
******** DRAM Performance Control ********
"Performance Enhance" to "Standard"
"Extreme Memory Profile (X.M.P.)" to "Disabled"
"(G)MCH Frequency Latch" to "333"
"System Memory Multiplier (SPD)" to "3.20 B" "(G)MCH Frequency Latch" to "400" "System Memory Multiplier (SPD)" to "2.66 D"
The strap is the reason we used a 334 or 401 clock, instead of a nice even 400: the 'straps' are sets of northbridge timings - much like memory latencies, the faster you go, the 'looser' the timings have to be... There are four straps, corresponding to the Intel FSB ratings: 200 (800FSB), 266 (1066FSB), 333 (1333FSB), and 400 (1600FSB - Intel actually does make a 1600 FSB CPU - the QX9775 - but, I think, it's over $1500 a pop!); each strap has it's own set of available memory multipliers (ratios). For instance, the 2.66 we used (which is actually a 4:3 bus to bus ratio) is available only on the 400 strap. Anyway, the strap latencies, for some northbridges, don't 'kick in' until one over the selected strap; so, in other words, setting the clock to 401 guarantees that we're getting the 400 latencies/timings...
"Memory Frequency (Mhz)" - again, can't be set, it's calculated...
"DRAM Timing Selectable (SPD)" to "Manual"
You should be able to leave the rest of the memory settings alone; we haven't changed its actual speed, so it should keep working: If overclocking, we simply took it from a system clock of 333 (1333FSB) times a three point two multiplier (333 x 3.2 = 1066), to a system clock of 400 (1600FSB) times a two point six six multiplier (400 x 2.66 = 1066)
"Load-Line Calibration" to "Disabled" (this works differently on different boards - on mine, it's worse "enabled" than "disabled" - the function is supposed to cure a phenomenon called Vdroop - the CPU voltage regulation circuit causes the CPU core voltage to sag, or 'droop' under high loadings; hopefully, we're going to be at a low enough voltage to just ignore this...) "CPU Vcore" to "1.3250V"
"MCH Core" to 1.200V" if you intend to add more than two sticks of ram...
& "DRAM Voltage" to "2.100V"
And that should do it!
I should point out that getting two reboots in a row here is perfectly normal behavior; it seems that, when you change certain settings (and we don't exactly know which ones - the only sure one I know is Trd - if you change it, I think you get the 'twin' reboot) it boots once to 'see where it's at', recalculates its remaining 'auto' settings, saves them, and then boots again. Three reboots in a row, however, usually indicates that the board was 'given indigestion' by your settings, and is going back to defaults. This sometimes goes astray, and it doesn't get back into proper operation - for example, at this point, mine will sometimes 'lock' itself into 111MHz x a six multiplier - and take a week to do a whole boot - that's time to do a CMOS reset, and use your 'stored' <F12> profile to get back to where you were...
The given settings should work, but I'm not in a position right now to check - my main workstation is down (with about ninety GB manuals, and a dozen 'canned' overclocks for various board/memory combos), probably due to running about a pound of drywall dust through it tearing open a wall to replace shower plumbing, not thinking about it being sucking air the whole time If you see any missing settings for your board versus the listed one, post back and I'll advise - and, take heart - I've never seen any G.Skill we couldn't get working, and working well - I use and specify it exclusively, even having been 'taught' that GBs are 'happiest' with mushkin - I find mushkins a bit pricey, and all my G.Skill beats spec significantly!
I made an attempt using the specs you provided previously, but some of the BIOS settings didn't align exactly. The resulting environment didn't allow Windows 7 (64-bit) to boot. On the bright side, I've got my G-Skills working right now, but only at 800. With my previous Gigabyte board, they ran at 1066, and the difference between the two is somewhat noticeable.
I'll take some screenshots of my BIOS settings later and post them. In the meantime, here is what CPU-Z has to say about my memory settings: