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One little letter (why 900e, 905e, but NOT 910e?)

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July 14, 2011 4:43:22 AM

I recently was hunting to upgrade my cpu on my first htpc build. I am running the unit 24/7 and re-encoding WMC recordings and such, so the load on my Athlon X2 5050e cpu was a little overworked for what I wanted to do. Otherwise, great energy usage chip (but both cores were maxed when recording tv, watching tv, and re-encoding all at once).

So, after hunting on and off for a few months, I had in my mind to check out/decide which of the various 'e' versions of the phenom chips to buy: 700e, 705e, 900e/905e/910e

I decided to purchase the Phenom II X4 910e. I was so excited for it to arrive and pop it in.
However, I dropped it into my system, and it will barely boot now.
It loads my Win7/64 after a very long wait and is extremely sluggish.

My motherboard is an ASUS M4A785-M
While troubleshooting, I double checked the Asus site for a CPU support list, and.....arrrggghhhh, the 910e is not listed.
A 910 is listed, the 900e is listed, and the 905e is listed.
I now am wondering if I'm out of luck and need to upgrade a motherboard to use this 'expensive' cpu.

So, my questions for the community are:

1) What is different about the 910e vs the 900e and 905e for it not to be listed on the Asus site and supported by a motherboard (I've seen the 910e listed as being supported on other sites while shopping, so that's why I had in the back of my mind it would work when I purchased it). They all use L3 cache, there are other 2.6 freq chips and higher that work with this board. What gives?

2) If it truly is a motherboard 'not working' or 'sort of working' with my cpu, what settings should I try to change in my BIOS to get this chip stable and into proper function mode. So I try to step up the voltage towards it's upper range? Is there hope for me here, since the chip is in the same family as other supported chips?

3) Since I've only built a few systems, I've never seen a cpu 'half work'. I've only seen them fail to boot, or run how they are supposed to. Is my scenario an anomaly? Can this happen in 0.1-0.5% in motherboard/cpu compatibility?

4) Or, am I just up s**t's creek? I have no other systems to drop this chip into, for the next week or so, to test to see if it's the chip or the chip/motherboard not working nicely.

Any help/feedback would be appreciated

More about : letter 900e 905e 910e

a c 159 à CPUs
July 14, 2011 1:04:49 PM

Bios file 0405 is required to run your 910e properly (it is listed on the cpu support page). Check your current bios file on the post screen by pressing the "pause" key. Don't flash if the file is correct. To flash the bios, disable any "boot block" or bios protection files in the bios, and windows firewalls. I've never had a problem with the windows flash programs. You will have to research the flash procedure yourself. Some will start the flash procedure by pressing an "f" key listed on the post screen, but most require you to download both the flash program and bios file and install the flash program, then reboot before starting the procedure. Most flash programs will start with a small black screeen. The first part of the program erases the old bios file, so be carefull and keep your hands off while flashing, and don't turn off anything. If the flash is successful, the system should reboot automatically. Bad flashes cause dead boards, but asus has a crashfree bios protection file on some of it's motherboard cd's.
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July 14, 2011 2:16:14 PM

o1die said:
Bios file 0405 is required to run your 910e properly (it is listed on the cpu support page). Check your current bios file on the post screen by pressing the "pause" key. Don't flash if the file is correct. To flash the bios, disable any "boot block" or bios protection files in the bios, and windows firewalls. I've never had a problem with the windows flash programs. You will have to research the flash procedure yourself. Some will start the flash procedure by pressing an "f" key listed on the post screen, but most require you to download both the flash program and bios file and install the flash program, then reboot before starting the procedure. Most flash programs will start with a small black screeen. The first part of the program erases the old bios file, so be carefull and keep your hands off while flashing, and don't turn off anything. If the flash is successful, the system should reboot automatically. Bad flashes cause dead boards, but asus has a crashfree bios protection file on some of it's motherboard cd's.


I thought the same thing when I was perusing a few websites, that I needed to 'roll back' my BIOS.
Such as on this site:
http://www.cpu-upgrade.com/mb-ASUS/M4A785-M.html

My BIOS has EZ Flash on it, and I've used it before via a thumb drive.

But, looking at the ASUS website, it reads differently. It says that the BIOS version listed is the minimum BIOS required to use CPU 'x'.
And on the page: http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM2Plus/M4A785M/#C..., it says 'since BIOS', implying the same, yes?

Has anyone had experience with 'rolling back' their BIOS to get a cpu to work?
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July 14, 2011 4:46:02 PM

Quote:
if you are on the latest BIOS it includes all revisions and fixes from older BIOSes too. And they have listed the phenom 9210e but they've written it as '910E' directly un der the'Phenom IIX4 910' and the '910E' requires BIOS 0405 or higher.


I was wondering that also. If that's the case, and it is a typo on their site...
Why wouldn't this chip work out of the box with this mother board then?
It was in an official AMD box with an AMD seal.

Any ideas what might not be causing a 'supported' chip from working? Never seen this before.
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a c 159 à CPUs
July 14, 2011 8:42:09 PM

Check your cpu fsb setting, then remove the board battery with the system off for about one minute. After rebooting, you may have to set the time, boot order, and disable amd's cool and quiet setting if you want the cpu to run at full speed all the time. You may also check your system for viruses and clean up the hardrive. I use microsoft's security essentials and ie privacy keeper version 2.7 to clean up the drive each session. They are both free.
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July 21, 2011 1:04:47 AM

o1die said:
Check your cpu fsb setting, then remove the board battery with the system off for about one minute. After rebooting, you may have to set the time, boot order, and disable amd's cool and quiet setting if you want the cpu to run at full speed all the time. You may also check your system for viruses and clean up the hardrive. I use microsoft's security essentials and ie privacy keeper version 2.7 to clean up the drive each session. They are both free.


What is it on my FSB that I should be looking for?
...or just try different settings until something works?
I'm guessing that's not the way this is supposed to work, but I'll try anything at this point.

Wouldn't taking the battery off my board just reset/default the bios or clear bios?
...if I'm already at a point where I flashed my BIOS with the newest version, what would removing the battery do above and beyond a BIOS flash?

I've tried disabling the CaQ function in my BIOS when I flashed it to the newest version, so I don't believe that's it.

Anyone else have some input as to what to check?
opinion?
do I have a bad cpu?
do I have a cpu that's not compatible?
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August 3, 2011 9:35:44 PM

well, after all of my fun...it's nice to know that my new cpu works. It all had to do with a silly Win7 setting that I had changed a while ago.

Not sure how much this thread will help anyone, since my solution is basically not related to compatibility, driver issues, or faulty chips.

There's a setting in Win7 via msconfig under the 'boot' tab, that allows one to modify ram and the number of cores used with a system. When I upgraded my chip, I still had these settings NOT set to default settings. Therefore, I think my system was trying to see my chip as a 2 core processor, instead of a 4 core processor.

As soon, as I could get these items set to a default state, my system booted up, installed the appropriate drivers and saw 4 cores. I sure do feel silly for changing these settings a year ago, but it was nice to find the problem.
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