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New Build problem

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April 5, 2012 5:55:17 AM

Here are the specs first; Mobo is a Gigabyte 990X4-UD3, CPU is a AMD-FX 8150 8 core, RAM is 4x4GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3, PSU is PC Power & Cooling 950W MKII. Symptoms CPU fan doesn't turn on when I plug in the PSU. I have paper clipped the PSU and it works. I even substituted in a brand new Corsair 600W psu same problems. Thought maybe a RAM issue so went with 2 instead of 4, still nothing. I pulled out the 24 pin from the mobo and the auxillary fans for the shell powered on but shut off when I plugged the 24 pin back into the mobo.
I don't have a spare AM3+ board or another CPU to test. I am thinking it my be the board but not sure. Any suggestions?

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April 5, 2012 6:33:33 AM

It sounds like you may have the ever so annoying problem that FX motherboards often need a BIOS update before they will accept a FX processor.

Without a different CPU, you can't do a BIOS update.

You would have to get a $10 ultra low end AM2 Sempron processor (I think the AM3+ boards can still take these) only to flash the BIOS with it if I am right.

FX processors flopped in the marketplace for just this sort of reason.

You could return your board for a different one, but sadly a lot of different boards have this problem.

You could return your CPU for a different AMD CPU, something from the Phenom 2 x4 or x6 lineup and it should work right away. Boards never need BIOS updates to recognize those.

- Edit - Typo
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April 5, 2012 7:54:47 AM

I agree.
I went to the Gigabyte site for your motherboard and it does say you need to update your BIOS.

"To enable AM3+ AMD FX-Series CPU support, please update your motherboard with the most current BIOS found in your motherboard’s download section."

So, yes you have to get a CPU that works without the BIOS update, apply the BIOS update, then swap to your current FX CPU.

That sucks. Sorry.
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April 5, 2012 4:32:56 PM

Thanks guys, just ordered a cheap AMD Athlon II I found and had it overnighted. Hopefully, tomorrow I will see if it is the Mobo, the CPU or flashing the BIOS.
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April 5, 2012 4:50:55 PM

hopefully the Athlon will do it. I had to do the same thing for my FX 6100. it took me weeks to figure out what i have to do. I poped my Phenom 955 in and updated the BIOS and tried FX and eh bit disapointed butthe 8cores are the best out of the series. Good Luck with you new Build!
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April 6, 2012 6:52:30 PM

Well, put in the Athlon and still the same results as before no power to the CPU fan or the auxilliaries. RMA the mobo and will see if that works. Not recommending the FX structure.
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April 6, 2012 11:54:52 PM

I don't recommend FX to anyone unless they already have at least one AMD processor accessible to them, because of all the problems they cause.

Even then, I usually still don't recommend them even though the FX-4100 does OK as a gaming chip.

I got on the 2500k train with everyone else.

I only really suggest 4 core AMD chips if someone only has $130 to budget for a processor and they want to play BF3 or something like that which really needs 4 cores (like BF3 does).
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April 7, 2012 4:35:51 PM

Funny thing is I really am not planning on gaming with the CPU I chose. For school I have to create VM's and do penetration testing and mini-network monitoring. I was running it off 8GB i5 core and it bottlenecking the laptop. So my goal was to build a tower to handle this amount of workload along with dual monitors to watch the network.
I considered just going to a similiar build I made for someone with an AMD phenom quad core but thought I would try the FX struture and see if the 8 core with a ssd, 3tb primary and max ram would allow me to do my projects without the bottlenecking.
Unfortunately, the semester will be over before I get to find out it seems.
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April 9, 2012 10:06:17 PM

Well, got a new board and still the same problem. Thinking maybe RAM or the PSU even if I did jumpstart the PSU with a paperclip. I tried a second set of Corsair Vengeance that I had but still no luck. Any other suggestions?
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April 10, 2012 10:19:44 PM

Do you think you could post a couple high resolution photos of the inside of the case?

Also, I know it probably doesn't need to be asked, but are you screwing the motherboard directly into the case wall or into the standoffs that came with the case?
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April 10, 2012 10:57:30 PM

Ill post picks when I get out of class. I installed the standoffs and I am screwing in to them. I spoke with a tech acquaintance and he said the mobo I have won't post with the Athlon and I need to go with a Phenom II. I had the board checked for free and the board is fine so I am going with the Phenom II approach.
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April 11, 2012 8:33:44 AM

Supported CPU's: http://www.gigabyte.com/support-downloads/cpu-support-p...

Now I assume your have BIOS FA.

There's your list of supported CPU's. Pick the cheapest one, boot, then flash the BIOS to FB so you can install your FX CPU.

Hopefully you can cheaper than this one. http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...

Which Athlon did you actually buy?

Any chance a store will help you out for cheap? Not likely I know. Or maybe you know someone who is buying a CPU and will loan it to you (for a small fee).

You could also try e-Bay, but I don't trust it.
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April 11, 2012 12:01:21 PM

Raid, will post pics later been cramming for exam so that has been top priority. Photon the Athlon I used was Athlon II X2 250. I got a Phenom II X2 560 coming since a tech friend of my brother's said he was expericing the same problems and the only CPU he found to work was the Phenom II.
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April 11, 2012 3:46:09 PM

Did you read the compatibility list I posted above?
Because the Athlon II X2 250 is listed as compatible.

Is this the correct motherboard?
GA-990FXA-UD3 (rev. 1.2)

**IMPORTANT**
There appear to be three versions of this board, 1.0, 1.1 and 1.2. The same CPU's are compatible, however the BIOS versions are different.

rev 1.2 uses FA or FB
rev 1.1 uses F1 up to F6

(It's the only name I could find CLOSE to what you spelled so I assumed you typed the name incorrectly.)
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April 11, 2012 8:55:12 PM

rev 1.1 is the version I have and yes it is the GA-990XA-UD3.




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April 12, 2012 1:07:53 AM

Just to verify, all 8 of those slots in the CPU power slot have cables in them, right?

The picture isn't entirely clear and I just want to make sure that portion is covered.

Also, it wouldn't hurt if you went down to 1 stick of RAM while you were troubleshooting this stuff, and no video card too while you are at it.
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April 12, 2012 1:14:59 AM

Yes all 8 of the slots have cables in them. I pulled the video card tried that, pulled the ram down to 2 and 1. I cleared the CMOS with a connector. Put in a low end graphics card when I went down to no Ram to see if there was anything happening.
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April 12, 2012 4:08:25 PM

What did happen when you had no ram and a low end video card?

Nothing?

Might be worth just RMAing the motherboard.
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April 12, 2012 6:00:36 PM

I just got this motherboard third time I had to RMA it. I had a tech look at the setup. He said the mobo was fine but didn't have any spares to test the CPU. I wonder if he did anything since he didn't charge me though he said he didn't find anything wrong.
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April 13, 2012 12:52:18 AM

Just to be clear:
You have tried MORE THAN ONE OF:
- motherboard
- CPU
- Power Supply
- RAM (one stick at a time)
- graphics card

If I have this correct, you have tried a replacement for EVERY part that you need to verify a basic build will turn on?

Wow. I'm stumped.

The ONLY thing I see is that the CPU (X2 250) appears to be the only one you've tried so far that could work as the FX can't yet. If it was defective you'd have a problem.

There's not much a technician can do that you can't. Basically you need to swap parts.

Other than checking with the new CPU you mentioned earlier I don't know what else to try.

**Have I got the state of things correct?**
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April 13, 2012 1:03:49 AM

Yes, you have it correct. This has become the build from hell. Numerous builds never went through this many troubleshooting steps.
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April 13, 2012 4:37:45 AM

If you want to know why the FX chips completely flopped in the marketplace, it is because of stuff like this. Just sayin. People just don't like to do this sort of troubleshooting with brand new parts.

Take the motherboard out of the case and put it on a wooden table and plug the stuff back into it when it while it is outside the case. See if anything works differently that way. You can turn it on without a power button by putting any random metal object into contact with the 2 pins listed in the manual as PWR_BTN. A flat screwdriver would work, for example.
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April 13, 2012 5:01:58 AM

Yes I put a connector on the pwr_btn pins and put the board on the anti-static sheet on top of my wood desk and wait for it, wait for it, nothing. I used AMD before had a lot of success and saved ppl money using their CPUs instead of Intels however, this is starting to really sour my on AMD.
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April 13, 2012 12:49:57 PM

That was with both the power cords plugged in and all that?
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April 14, 2012 1:49:23 AM

Yep both power cords in, 1 Ram no Ram 2 Ram 4. Different graphics cards and no graphics.
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Best solution

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April 14, 2012 3:00:51 PM

AMD really aren't doing too well in the processor marketplace right now.

Their next big thing was supposed to be FX, but I think they underestimated the level of support they would get from the motherboard manufacturers in terms of the motherboard manufacturers going out of their way to make the FX chips a success.

The major motherboard manufacturers all make boards for both Intel and AMD and they don't really care if they need to make more of one type or less of another. Intel is the easiest thing for them, because Intel doesn't cause support calls for FX.

If people just buy Intel, things get easier for the motherboard makers, so they have an incentive for people not to buy FX. That, I think, is why they feel it is OK to bend people over who do buy FX. They just don't want you to do it, so they generally have a bad level of support for it and everybody knows that. They hope you just read the reviews and buy Intel instead.

Anyway, I think all that is kinda unfair to AMD, but it was AMD's bad call that made all this happen. They shouldn't have made a BIOS update that would make the new chips work on the old boards.

Sure, there is some subset of people who would have had to buy a new motherboard if they wanted to use FX and it wouldn't be as simple as doing a BIOS update with the motherboard and processor you already have to allow you to switch out that processor for an FX one, but I don't think many people are doing that anyway.

For example, I have a Phenom 2 x4 chip myself and I could do a BIOS update and then replace it with an FX 4100 or something, but I really have no intent to actually do that. The gain for me is just not that much.

It is much more likely that a FX chip will be purchased at the same time as a motherboard as part of a new computer. That works OK if the person building the computer has old AMD chips laying around, which OEM builders do, but not well if the person buying the new parts doesn't have that.

Basically, AMD either knowingly or unknowingly screwed the hobbyist on this. Either way is pretty unforgivable.

If they just said the old boards weren't compatible with FX and people had to have a new type of board (AM4 or something) to work with FX, then all these problems would have been avoided.

Anyway, none of that really helps you. I just wanted to give you a bit of background and to say that it isn't entirely AMDs fault. They made a call that would work if the motherboard makers chipped in, but they didn't actually chip in. Thus the marketplace failure.

Anyway, at this point I am pretty much out of things to try. It seems like two different kinds of the same general item just have both been bad and I don't really have any good reason to believe it is one thing or another thing.

You had a tech look at it and they didn't see anything immediately wrong with it with what seemed to be a basic quick look over for incorrect connections or so.

You may have to just bite the bullet and take it to a computer shop, either that or consider trying a 3rd round of parts.
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April 14, 2012 5:18:33 PM

Thx for the info Raid. Yea I was a supporter of AMD for a while. When I had friends that wanted me to create a build for them I would using insist on AMD over Intel simply bc you used to get equivalent if not better performance for less money. It is unfortunate that now I am experiencing these problems but its a learning experience.

All this headache just to build a tower that can help me setup my ids labs and now the semester is over. While I subscribed to Moore's law for my CPU, I ended up with Murphy's law.
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April 14, 2012 8:20:54 PM

As sad as I am to say it, some percentage of the people who get FX chips are going to get burned in the process. you seem to have been one of the unlucky ones.

In any event, maybe there is some kind of lesson you can learn in all this that you can apply to computer security work.

It is much more about the physical than it is about the digital.

The biggest threat to the security of a network isn't someone in the cloud trying to get past your firewall. Much more of a concern is eliminating human error from the equation.

The human error from the people over at AMD costed you a lot.

Managing the risk of other people making errors will probably be the toughest thing you have to do if you go into the field.

Kevin Mitnick wasn't exceptional at breaking through firewalls, he was exceptional at getting people to give him the phone number of the modem that gets him access to the unprotected RAS server.

He told people a sob story and that is all it took for them to be convinced to lower the security stance of their organization long enough for him to get in and do what he wanted to do.

Indeed, the best hackers aren't the ones that are the best at getting around security, the best ones are the ones that convince others to do it for them. They are also the hardest ones to go after, because they never get their hands dirty.
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April 25, 2012 5:18:25 AM

Well, finally determined the problem one of the pins was loose on the mobo itself. So when you connected the power button from the shell to the mobo there wasnt a complete circuit however if you jumped the board with a piece of metal got the fan to kick on and the aux fans to turn on. So have to rma this board but added a new checklist item.
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May 6, 2012 4:45:04 PM

Best answer selected by zychos.
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