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Clean re-install - - - Correct Sequence?

Last response: in Windows 95/98/ME
March 4, 2001 9:48:14 PM

Newbie here, trying to get a system I through together up and going.Intially I had everything running until I downloaded VIA 426 4in1. Then "blue screen maddness!!". I unistalled 4in1 but still getting lockups and some blue screens.I'm going to do a clean install and need to know the correct load squence so I can get the AGP card to run correctly . System Specs
250 watts / P3 677(FC)/fb133/256 ram/Win98
DFI TA64-B mobo, W/Apollo P133A, AGP4X, 2xATA66(have update for ATA100 on floppy)
30gig HDD ATA100 maxtor 5200rpm
C.Lab AnnPro GForce 256, 32MB DDR
10/100 ethernet card (slot3) MX300 Sound (slot 5)
10x4x32 CDRW & 40x CD
other: floppy,scanner, webcam& digital, Extn.supdisk, hp prt

Any suggestions on Load sequnce? Special Bios settings (FSAA off?,opengl on? Write fast off?)???
Heard Directx8 has some issues with GForce? Going back to Dx7. Any ideas wounld help.
Thx Chgohawk
March 10, 2001 6:32:40 AM

Ok People,
I waited for a reply, but had none, Sooooo I went searching
and found a interesting post in the graphics section. I contacted this individual and recieved some education, Plus GREAT advice. KUDO'S to "Toejam31" . Thanks again Justin.
Great info that should give some direction for any "newbie"
trying to build his/hers 1st putor. His reply to me below.

Hello Rich,
In order for your system to be stable, you should load the drivers
in this sequence: Direct X, the VIA 4-in-1 drivers, and then finally, your
video card drivers. Be sure that you are using running the standard
Windows VGA drivers, that your desktop resolution is 640x480 with 256
colors, and that your monitor refresh rate is set on Optimal, before
installing anything. You can always go back and adjust everything to your
liking when you are done. I also recommend that you have the latest set of
drivers for your monitor and the video card. If the Creative drivers don't
work well ... try the nVidia Detonator 6.50's. I can send you this
version, if you like ... and I know that these work.

Actually, I'd recommend, with a clean installation, that you take
everything out of the computer that isn't absolutely necessary, at first
... and only have the video card, the hard drive, the memory, and the
CD-ROM connected to the mobo when loading Windows. Then, add each
additional card/peripheral, one at a time. This limits problems, and might
help you track down an unexpected problem due to something installed in a
PCI slot.

Windows 98 and 98SE come with Direct X, but it is version 6. It
should be upgraded first. If your version of Windows is 4.10.1998 ... I
highly suggest that you upgrade to Win98 SE ... it is faster, and more
stable, containing many bug fixes and updated drivers.

Here's a quick tip: anytime you change video drivers, reinstall
the VIA drivers. The reverse is also true; if you install new VIA drivers,
reinstall your video card drivers. If you do either of these things, as
long as you are simply overwriting your current drivers, there is no need
to uninstall anything.

However, it is always best to uninstall old video card drivers
before installing new ones, using Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel.

I have found no strange issues with using Direct X 8a (the retail
version.) It works just fine with my GeForce card. It may be slightly
slower than Direct X 7, during benchmarking tests ... but otherwise, I
think it is more stable, not less. I haven't had a crash, a lockup, or
even a screen jiggle in weeks.

As for the VIA drivers, 4.28a is the version I am using ... which
is an upgrade from two previous versions. (I started with 4.24.) Again ...
no problems whatsoever, and this is after playing many games, lowering my
memory latency speed to Cas 2, and using an extensive burn-in program to
check for errors.

If you read my post ... then you should be aware that a 250 watt
power supply is totally inadequate for running a GeForce card. You need at
least 20 amps available for the 3.3v line in order to have sufficient
voltage for the memory and the AGP port. Take a look at your power supply,
and check the specifications on the side. You've got a lot of stuff in that
can ... and inadequate power supplies tend to cause blue screens that
people generally blame on software glitches.

I don't know if you can enable Fast-Writes in the BIOS on that
mobo or not. Your best bet is to give it a try, and run an intensive
benchmarking program, such as 3D Mark 2000 to push the video card. If the
system locks up ... disable this in the BIOS. Other programs that work
well to check for errors are SiSoft Sandra, and my personal favorite,
Passmark BurnIn Test v2.2. You can download it and use it for 30 days
without paying for it.

I would leave FSAA off ... it will slow down your frame rates when
playing games, and no video card with an nVidia GPU really handles it
well. But as for Open GL ... absolutely yes, as long as your video card
can support it. I'm sure that your card can run Open GL apps with no problem.

You mentioned having 256MB of RAM. Set your AGP aperture size at
128 at first ... it should be half the size of your physical RAM. But if
you wish to enable your motherboard to run AGP 4x, you'll need the latest
BIOS from the manufacturer and the latest VIA drivers. Be prepared to make
the aperture smaller, if complications occur, or to adjust the AGP driving
control strength to DA.

Put the sound card in the third PCI slot, not the fifth ... this
will help you avoid complications with IRQ addresses. The Ethernet card
should be in the fourth slot. (According to the specs on your motherboard,
the fifth slot is a shared PCI/ISA slot.)

Final note: When installing the VIA drivers, you'll have an option
for TURBO mode, and a normal mode. Choose TURBO if you wish you run the AGP
port at 4x.

Please let me know how it goes ... and if you have any problems,
don't hesitate to contact me. I just went through all of this, so I'm very
familiar with the sequence. Also ... if I can make things easier for you,
by emailing you any of the drivers you need ... just say so, and I'll get
them on the way. As for BIOS tweaks, once you get the system running and
stable, I'll be glad to send you information on how an Award BIOS should be
set up to get the best performance.

... Toejam31

P.S. Here's a possibly silly question. Are you sure that your
hard drive is ATA 100? I haven't seen many ATA 100 drives with a
revolution speed of 5,400. And again, according to the specs on your
motherboard, the TA64-B doesn't not have native support for more than ATA
66 unless you are running the latest BIOS. I would be sure that the BIOS
upgrade was done before reinstalling Windows, or anything else I have
previously mentioned. A bad flashing can account for many kinds of errors.

Some people are having problems with ATA 100 cables and VIA
chipsets ... that's something to think about, if all else fails.

P.P.S. If none of this works ... check your memory settings. You
didn't mention what kind (brand) of memory you have, or how the memory
banks are set. If the stuff is cheap, generic, Cas 3 memory, you might
want to consider replacing it with something better. But I'll bet, after
seeing the amount of peripherals you have on that computer, you are
experiencing problems with your power supply, exactly as I was. I
guarantee you that 250 watts isn't even close to the amount of power your
system needs.

I'll be looking forward to hearing the results of the clean
installation. Good luck!

One can figure out how smart they could be, only
after learning how dumb they really are.