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ASUS E45M1-M Pro strange crashes (Win7 x64)

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November 19, 2011 1:42:22 AM

Hi!

I built a HTPC config around the Asus E45M1-M Pro motherboard.

I can install Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1 without any problem, but following the installation of the Catalyst graphics driver, the system crashes every time on Windows startup (during the Windows boot logo). The system halts, the screen goes blank and not even the RESET button works, I can only shut it down by holding the power button for a few secs. After powering it up again, the boot screen sometimes says "Overclocking failed, press F1". :o 

I tried multiple drivers (factory DVD, and also downloaded several versions from the Internet), but all of them break the system in the same way.

What can be the problem? Is it possible that the mobo has a factory fault?

The PSU is a Nexus RX-5300, the only other component in this PC is a HDD.
The case gets adequate airflow, so it's not an overheating problem (checked in BIOS).

Thanks,
j
November 19, 2011 11:03:15 AM

I tried enabling/disabling various features:
- onboard Turbo Key II switch
- BIOS: EPU power saving mode, CPU C6, set all overclocking features to manual/auto/...

If I wait after a crash (instead of powering the PC off), about a minute later it restarts by itself and the BIOS boot screen says that a PSU power surge was detected on the previous boot attempt. On the other hand, if I power it off, it says that overclocking failed. :o  :o  :o 

No clue about what the hell is happening here...
November 19, 2011 1:44:52 PM

Tested with another PSU (Enermax Modu 82+ 525W).

Windows cannot be installed when using this PSU, as the installer freezes right before the partitioning step.
The HDD emits loud, constant seeks noises and the setup doesn't progresses...

Then putting back the original Nexus PSU, Windows can be installed on the HDD, so it's not the HDD's fault.
Also, the Enermax PSU is not faulty either, as I'm using it in my main computer day-by-day.

What can be the problem here? Is it a faulty mobo or what?
Related resources
November 19, 2011 9:13:05 PM

Also tested the HDD in another PC with the Enermax PSU, so now it's confirmed that the HDD and Enermax PSU could normally work together fine...
November 21, 2011 12:12:03 PM

I'm looking at this motherboard for the same reason, so I'm interested in your results. Are you saying that the Enermax PSU fixed the issue, and that it was the original PSU causing the problems?

Also, where the heck did you buy it? :) 

Thanks
November 21, 2011 3:00:26 PM

I returned the mobo to the shop to get a new one, right now I'm waiting for the replacement board.

The Enermax PSU brought in another inexplicable error (the HDD problem), but it could be reproduced only with this E45M1-M Pro mobo. The HDD is working fine in my main PC (which the Enermax PSU is normally a part of), so I interpret it as a sign that my E45M1-M Pro is faulty. So as I said, in the end I returned the mobo and right now I'm waiting for the replacement.
November 21, 2011 4:55:17 PM

Oh I misread your previous post, I understand, thanks. I would appreciate if you can update this thread with what you discover after you try the replacement.

Thanks,
Josh
November 23, 2011 1:27:07 PM

Got no replacement. Store said the mobo works OK with 32-bit Windows, and suggested trying several Windows versions, until I find one that it's compatible with.

They also said that this mobo is rather new (only a few months old), and it may take some time until correct crashfree drivers get released.

I will do a last try with a 32-bit Win7, will post update.
November 24, 2011 9:02:07 AM

Turns out it was the HDD. As you can guess, it was a great WTF moment for me.
When installing onto a WD Green Power 1TB instead of a Samsung Spinpoint M6 HM400LI, the problem went away.
December 2, 2011 1:32:49 AM

Finally, I disabled *everything* related to power management, and now the reboots/shutdowns went away. I disabled at least the following, off the top of my head: C6, Cool'n'Quiet, C-State PMIN, EPU Power Saving Mode, Power Surge Protection. It's staggering that these features are seemingly big no-nos with this expensive motherboard, but at least it can be made to work somehow.

Also suspecting the HDD was most likely a false trail... it must have been some elaborate power related issue, but after all these I don't have the patience to test it out.

Maybe motherboard manufacturers are just trying to keep up with games in that initial releases come out with bugs, then you will have to wait half a year till the first usable updates are released and you can use your purchase. :D  lol nevermind, just joking

So no more reboots/shutdowns as of now, but guess what, I've got a new random problem. Occasionally, the display sometimes features flickering horizontal white lines randomly on the desktop. They jerk quite quickly and sometimes I don't get them for hours. It's a relatively new problem, and seems to go away when switching from 32bit color depth to 16bit.
The display is OK, I regularly use it with another PC with the same cable and resolutions and never had this problem. Also tried it with another cable, but it didn't solve the problem.
Also, GPU heat isn't likely to be the problem here, as the CPU/GPU are around 30 degrees (of Celsius) when the lines come...

Will post update if I can solve this one too.
December 16, 2011 7:06:06 PM

I got the same board, and also experienced installation challenges.

My workaround was to do the initial installation (OpenElec 1.0.2, Ubuntu 11.04 or Windows 7) on another machine, and then pop the SSD in my HTPC that hosts this motherboard.

Seems to work fine, except for playing HD video (be it streaming IPTV -- both udpxy and mythtv result in crap playback of 1080p streams -- and watching a 1080p BluRay rip).

Seems to me my setup containing the Asus E45M1-M Pro w/ a 120GB SSD and 4GB of 1333Mhz RAM should do this just fine... (1080p simply won't give good output be it on Windows, Ubuntu or OpenElec).
May 8, 2012 5:37:03 AM

rober-t said:
I got the same board, and also experienced installation challenges.

My workaround was to do the initial installation (OpenElec 1.0.2, Ubuntu 11.04 or Windows 7) on another machine, and then pop the SSD in my HTPC that hosts this motherboard.

Seems to work fine, except for playing HD video (be it streaming IPTV -- both udpxy and mythtv result in crap playback of 1080p streams -- and watching a 1080p BluRay rip).

Seems to me my setup containing the Asus E45M1-M Pro w/ a 120GB SSD and 4GB of 1333Mhz RAM should do this just fine... (1080p simply won't give good output be it on Windows, Ubuntu or OpenElec).


Do you still have problem to play Blue-Ray rips? Is that the same problem för both W7 and Ubuntu?
I have installed Ubuntu 12.04 LTS with Catalyst 12.4-drivers, but have problem to play raw Blue Ray Rips ISOs, (approximatly 50GB big).
May 8, 2012 6:12:05 AM

joni8135 said:
Do you still have problem to play Blue-Ray rips? Is that the same problem för both W7 and Ubuntu?
I have installed Ubuntu 12.04 LTS with Catalyst 12.4-drivers, but have problem to play raw Blue Ray Rips ISOs, (approximatly 50GB big).


Nope, works fine now.

First, I got it to work in Windows by enabling hardware video acceleration in VLC (Preference > Input & Codecs > Use GPU Accelerated Decoding).

Later, I also found an option in XBMC (think it was "enable VDPAU" in video playback).

HTH,
Robert
May 8, 2012 6:12:06 AM

joni8135 said:
Do you still have problem to play Blue-Ray rips? Is that the same problem för both W7 and Ubuntu?
I have installed Ubuntu 12.04 LTS with Catalyst 12.4-drivers, but have problem to play raw Blue Ray Rips ISOs, (approximatly 50GB big).


Nope, works fine now.

First, I got it to work in Windows by enabling hardware video acceleration in VLC (Preference > Input & Codecs > Use GPU Accelerated Decoding).

Later, I also found an option in XBMC (think it was "enable VDPAU" in video playback), so I ditched Windows, and run OpenElec now.

HTH,
Robert
!