What are the risks of unlocking CPU cores?

Are there any big risks to unlocking cores? I'm running an Athlon II X3 440 on an MSI 870A-G54 mobo. I'm satisfied with the performance as it is but have been curious to see if it would unlock to a quad. Thanks in advance!
16 answers Last reply
More about what risks unlocking cores
  1. There is no risk as far as i''m aware of other then the 4th core might not be stable.
    So you'll still have what you started with.
  2. Stability issues, but those are very rare. As always, unlocking cores can/will result in higher temps, but thats normal due to extra core(s). No big risks, such as damaging other components, are involved unless you change voltage.
  3. cowgod2007 said:
    Stability issues, but those are very rare. As always, unlocking cores can/will result in higher temps, but thats normal due to extra core(s). Now big risks, such as damaging other components, are involved unless you change voltage.


    I'm assuming that that's supposed to say "aren't involved" so it's relatively low risk for the most part then? And can always be disabled if there is any problems?
  4. Yup, worst thing that's gonna happen is you go back to whatever its supposed to be.
  5. fharper said:
    I'm assuming that that's supposed to say "aren't involved" so it's relatively low risk for the most part then? And can always be disabled if there is any problems?


    Woops. Yup, sposed to say no big risks are involved. Low risk. Easy to enable/disable. VERY EASY TO DO.
  6. Timop said:
    Yup, worst thing that's gonna happen is you go back to whatever its supposed to be.


    Ah so sounds all right to me, worse case I'm still happy and best case I'll be even happier!
  7. Also, for stability testing should I use Prime95 or is there something better?
  8. fharper said:
    Also, for stability testing should I use Prime95 or is there something better?

    For a quick test, IntelBurnTest is a great choice, 5 runs should mean that your system should be stable for the most part.

    http://downloads.guru3d.com/IntelBurnTest-v1.6-download-2047.html
  9. Timop said:
    For a quick test, IntelBurnTest is a great choice, 5 runs should mean that your system should be stable for the most part.

    http://downloads.guru3d.com/IntelBurnTest-v1.6-download-2047.html


    Should I run it on standard? Also another question lol. What program should I use for CPU temp monitoring?
  10. fharper said:
    Should I run it on standard? Also another question lol. What program should I use for CPU temp monitoring?

    Standard should be enough.. Depends on your RAM really.

    CoreTemp is a great programs to monitor CPU temps.
    http://www.alcpu.com/CoreTemp/
  11. Sometimes, when you unlock cores, Core temp doesn't show temps (at least mine didnt). I like to use CPUID hardware monitor. Shows me max and min temps and current. Shows everything in one conveinient window (gpu, cpu, etc)

    http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmonitor.html
  12. Well... no luck for me. Although I'm not sure I was doing it right. In the BIOS I just set Unlock CPU Core to enabled and saved/rebooted. When it booted up it said windows can't start normally and gave me the option to try to fix or start windows normally. If I chose start normally it wouldn't start so I just disable it again and everything is fine now.
  13. Then it might be the core is defective.
  14. Go to BIOS and follow your motherboard manual and Unlock the extra core/cores.
    Run some stability tests like prime95
    Use Core temp and/or OCCT to monitor core voltage and Cpu temps...
    Its wise to get a aftermarket cooler before overclocking or unlocking cores.
    If there is a stability issue just switch the CMOS jumpers for 10sec to clear BIOS settings and restore normal/default BIOS settings
  15. Typically, the 4th core was disabled due to yield issues. As a result, the 4th core may not work at all, may be unstable, or may run perfectly. Its a matter of chance.
  16. You can say the chances are 50/50 of problems or no problems with unlocking the extra core/s
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