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Intel recalls Sandy Bridge chipsets - now what?

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  • Motherboards
  • Chipsets
  • Sandy Bridge
  • Intel
Last response: in Motherboards
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January 31, 2011 3:11:09 PM

Intel just announced a recall of all 6-series chipsets, the ones used for Sandy Bridge. Apparently there's a bug that can cause SATA performance to degrade over time and it requires a silicon fix. They do not anticipate being able to deliver the replacement parts until late February. The Sandy Bridge processors themselves are unaffected and Intel says that "consumers can continue to use their systems with confidence, while working with their computer manufacturer for a permanent solution," which implies (but does not state categorically) that the bug does not cause data corruption.

Here's a link to Intel's full announcement: http://newsroom.intel.com/community/intel_newsroom/blog...

As somebody who was literally about to pull the trigger on a big Newegg order so my son and I could put together an i5-2500K-based pc, I'm at a quandry. The machine its replacing died, so waiting until March is not an option. Buy a defective mobo and get a replacement later? Yuck.

More about : intel recalls sandy bridge chipsets

January 31, 2011 3:49:30 PM

Same here, my Newegg order with P67 mobo shipped this morning.

First thing is to see details on how Intel is going to support mobo manufacturers on this; sounds like even if I proceed with building the machine, I can expect a recall to swap the mobo. Though I'm not thrilled with rebuilding a few months down the road, I'm willing to do that rather than postponing the whole thing.

But my bigger concern is how this interacts with the OEM Windows OS. I'd presume this will appear to MS as though the OEM package has been moved to a different machine, and will require a call to MS to explain. Not sure whether it's best to proceed that way, or to try to delay Windows activation until after the replacement mobo is in the machine. Seems like this will be a big issue for both manufacturers as well as those who build personal machines with OEM Windows packages. Or whether I should try to return the OEM package and pony up the extra cost for a full retail version.
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January 31, 2011 4:15:41 PM

I'm in a similar boat, I was going to pull the trigger on the i5 2500k in a couple of weeks. I'm better position though since I have a working system to use until they work this out.

My concern is that even once they have worked out that bug, I'll want to wait another 1-2 months to see if the chip is more stable then.
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January 31, 2011 4:34:29 PM

Anandtech did a quick analysis.

For the TL;DR, looks like SATA ports 1&2 (the 6Gbps ones) are unaffected. So if you're using those two ports only there is no degradation problem.

Edit: Tom's has the same on the main page now... curse you slow page refresh.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
January 31, 2011 4:45:04 PM

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/cougar-point-sandy-bri... "Enthusiasts won’t be as immediately affected. Boards that shipped out already, in most cases, carry a three-year warranty, offering some form of protection. Sandy Bridge notebooks haven’t shipped out in volume. And Z68 won’t be delayed, Intel says. Everyone else: you’ll want to wait until “fixed” boards start shipping in March/April." Oh Joy as sales go poof!

There's another link, maybe more, with same info in the forum.
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February 1, 2011 2:13:59 AM

jaquith said:
http://www.tomshardware.com/news/cougar-point-sandy-bri... "Enthusiasts won’t be as immediately affected. Boards that shipped out already, in most cases, carry a three-year warranty, offering some form of protection. Sandy Bridge notebooks haven’t shipped out in volume. And Z68 won’t be delayed, Intel says. Everyone else: you’ll want to wait until “fixed” boards start shipping in March/April." Oh Joy as sales go poof!

There's another link, maybe more, with same info in the forum.


I was about to RMA my p8p67 pro ASUS board because the PS/2 do not work properly. Should I wait until the new boards or what? Since I have a 30day warranty through Newegg.
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February 1, 2011 11:42:19 AM

nged72 said:
I was about to RMA my p8p67 pro ASUS board because the PS/2 do not work properly. Should I wait until the new boards or what? Since I have a 30day warranty through Newegg.

just dont worry about it and use it till they order the recall. When they do you will get a replacement anyways... (i need a new cpu+mobo asap and shoulda just bought the p8p67 pro with the i5 2500k... just be sure not to use the sata 3.0gb ports but rather the 6.0gb ports.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 12:53:39 PM

nged72 said:
I was about to RMA my p8p67 pro ASUS board because the PS/2 do not work properly. Should I wait until the new boards or what? Since I have a 30day warranty through Newegg.

Hold on to your MOBO, if you are using the SATA3 ports then you're not affected. It will take Intel 1~2 months to resupply the chipsets, and if you are concerned you 'might' be able to get a refund now from Newegg considering the circumstances or in March~April ASUS will exchange your MOBO. This is Intel's 'oops' and they are flipping the bill. Imagine a $20 chipset buying back a $200+ MOBO -- yikes! Later I too image a BOAT LOAD of refurbished P67/H67 flooding the market 'cheap' - I might buy one..
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February 1, 2011 1:54:43 PM

Lol, I just use the two Sata 6 ports for my Sata 3 stuff anyways ;) 
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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
February 1, 2011 4:25:55 PM

Holy s*** i just set up my p8p67 deluxe with i5 2500k cpu and it exploded. I think the problem is worse than intel thinks it is.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 4:31:58 PM

What exploded?!

BTW - I'd LOVE to see a picture!
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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
February 1, 2011 4:36:12 PM

I will take a picture when the smoke has cleared and it's safe to touch it. How do you send pictures?
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 4:39:51 PM

Set up a FREE account on http://photobucket.com/ the upload procedure is easy. Next once uploaded click on the "IMG Code" space to the right, and then paste the link.

e.g.
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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
February 1, 2011 4:41:54 PM

Ok i will do that but it's in quite a bad way. If you didnt know it was a computer you might not be able to guess
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 4:47:37 PM

I've seen some pretty bad things with MOBOs; this was caused by a bad PSU.
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February 1, 2011 5:06:45 PM

Quote:
LNO are out of their friggin minds! $250 for a $20 Chipset - DON'T - MASSIVE RIP-OFF!!! You would have to be the DUMBEST person around! RMA the MOPBO and get it fixed for $0 {FREE}.

What? People have to pay $175 per MOBO to LNO? :non:  What I don't understand is, what the guys at Gigabyte and Asus would do?
I'm really furious because lot of money I've invested in those MOBOs. And, most MOBOs are not from Intel. Why shouldn't I approach Gigabyte and Asus for replacement? These guys have not so good (and prompt) support, this is just getting crazy (wait till April is B$)!
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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
February 1, 2011 5:20:33 PM

Mine is far worse than that one.
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February 1, 2011 6:30:43 PM

I have a RAID0 array on my 3gb/s ports. Can I just plug them into the 6gb/s and they will still work? Don't want to lose the data.
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February 1, 2011 6:49:21 PM

So hi everyone,

I'm in the same "boat" as everyone but I'm not really that upset or fretting about the problem with the sandy bridge SATA controller.( I just got, assembled and tested my system on Saturday).

I'll tell you why I'm not that worried.

1) The failure is one of those statistical over time issues. The bug was discovered through testing for OEM parts at pretty extreme conditions. Yes, there's a POSSIBILITY that the 3Gb/s controller could just eventually fry out, but really, highly unlikely that it will do so any time really soon(not before a solution is presented... if ever).

2) Companies will always do what is in their own best interest.
It is in Intel, and the manufacturers(MSI, ASUS, Gigabyte etc)best interest to keep their early adopters happy. Especially since its at the START of the cycle not the end. The only real question in my mind is how will it be implemented, NOT if.
I'm concerned about downtime as much as anyone here. When I RMA for the fix.. will it be days? Weeks? months? before I get my replacement. A company could really distinguish itself by offering a step up program.
Realistically I expect to be without a system for 2 to 3 weeks for turn around(I'm glad I have a gaming laptop)

How they handle this recall/RMA process will echo in the minds of what.. 8 MILLION customers? Think of how finicky you are with chosing a motherboard? Me? I won't ever go with ASUS ever again since I had a bad board years ago, and a crappy RMA experience(YEARS ago).. I acknowledge they have a great product and recommend it to people when appropriate still.. but me? I won't give them my buck. Bad events echo in people's mind... think of if each company left a bad taste in the mouth of all their early adopters... loyalties will shift, names will be libeled(it is the internet after all) overall it might be a wash as people just shift from one company to another.. but if I were running a big company like ASUS or MSI( rather big market share) I wouldn't want to risk my customer loyalty.

That's just my thoughts and 2c, hope it helps.
Deep breaths... its just a computer. :) 
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 7:43:58 PM

quovatis said:
I have a RAID0 array on my 3gb/s ports. Can I just plug them into the 6gb/s and they will still work? Don't want to lose the data.

NO, don't do it! Especially a RAID 0!!! It is NOT necessary, and the problem happens over time in the form of 'slowing' not corrupting. At least that's want Intel says.

If you really want to move them then you'll need to reformat ans start from scratch.
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February 1, 2011 8:44:15 PM

1 Feb 2011

Just finished a chat session with newegg re: Asus P67 Board purchased 2 weeks ago.

The rep RMA'd my board for a full refund no questions asked! Way to go newegg!!!

Said new replacement boards will be available in April.
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February 1, 2011 9:05:00 PM

jaquith said:
NO, don't do it! Especially a RAID 0!!! It is NOT necessary, and the problem happens over time in the form of 'slowing' not corrupting. At least that's want Intel says.

If you really want to move them then you'll need to reformat ans start from scratch.


Thanks. But why won't this work? Isn't the same RAID driver used for both sets of ports?

I'm not that worried either. Right now it's hypothetical problem that hasn't been seen in the real world and only simulated in the lab under extreme conditions. Chances are there will never be an issue, but if it's simple to just plug in the drives to the other ports and it reduces the risk, I'd do it. But you say it won't work.
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 9:19:49 PM

The RAID is set-up in the BIOS and per the Chipset being used and no it's a different driver. RAID 0 is a blob of striped useless data by itself spread across 2 drives, each by itself is gibberish. I assume you know if you lose 1 drive you've lost it all and it's unrecoverable. Moving RAID across Intel is recoverable e.g. ICH10R -> another ICH10R, but Intel to Marvell isn't.

Try it let us know...

I use RAID 0 for OS + Apps period.
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February 1, 2011 9:27:54 PM

Ok, thanks. So is there any harm in trying? If I plug them in the blue ports and it doesn't recognize the RAID0 set, nothing should be changed and I can just plug them back in the 3gb/s ports and be back to normal?

And yes, I know what RAID 0 is. I have it for my OS + apps, and a larger, slower drive for backup/storage.
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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
February 1, 2011 9:30:09 PM

POTATO!!!
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a c 717 V Motherboard
a b å Intel
February 1, 2011 10:31:10 PM

@quovatis - no guarantees. If you change Chipsets you'll need to set-up the RAID thereby changing the BIOS. Since you're okay in being a Guinea Pig, I'm interested in knowing...??
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February 1, 2011 11:10:58 PM

Quote:
I will take a picture when the smoke has cleared and it's safe to touch it. How do you send pictures?


OMG !!! ..it exploded ?? ..as in blew up ..?? Jesus christ ..does warranty cover that ?
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February 2, 2011 12:47:26 AM

Quote:
If you choose to use the hardware work-around option, there is no need to contact us at this time. We have your information on record and will email you as soon as the replacements become available.


I bought an ASUS P8P67 Pro on release and learned about the recall via email from newegg, which contained the above. The hardware work-around they suggest is explained here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tJcE2alQPvY (basically, don't use SATA II ports). As I understand it, the MBs still 99% work and Newegg will replace them when Intel ships the revised chipsets sometime in April. I have 5 SATA devices (1 SDD, 3 HDD, and 1 OD), so I have to use some of the defective SATA II ports. However, it looks like the problem will only affect some of the systems (5-15%) most likely in a few years. I'm just going to switch my main SSD and HDD to the SATA III ports and keep an eye on the data transfer for the others.

Certainly disappointing, but as long as Newegg/ASUS/Intel replaces the MB for free, I'll be fine.
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February 2, 2011 1:13:48 AM

ScardyBob said:
Quote:
If you choose to use the hardware work-around option, there is no need to contact us at this time. We have your information on record and will email you as soon as the replacements become available.


I bought an ASUS P8P67 Pro on release and learned about the recall via email from newegg, which contained the above. The hardware work-around they suggest is explained here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tJcE2alQPvY (basically, don't use SATA II ports). As I understand it, the MBs still 99% work and Newegg will replace them when Intel ships the revised chipsets sometime in April. I have 5 SATA devices (1 SDD, 3 HDD, and 1 OD), so I have to use some of the defective SATA II ports. However, it looks like the problem will only affect some of the systems (5-15%) most likely in a few years. I'm just going to switch my main SSD and HDD to the SATA III ports and keep an eye on the data transfer for the others.

Certainly disappointing, but as long as Newegg/ASUS/Intel replaces the MB for free, I'll be fine.


I got the same email :) 

Now we just have to use our system until "April" and when they email us send our Mobo in and get a replacement.

"We are extending our warranty by 90 days or until a solution comes out, which ever is later" w00t
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