990FX Extreme9 Software
ASRock hasn’t made any significant changes to its applications suite since last year, still including various freeware and trial software in addition to its XFast LAN, XFast USB, and AXTU. Since portions of AXTU are hardware-specific, we took a few minutes to examine its implementation on this board.
Part of its intricate hardware monitoring menu, AXTU appears to have the most accurate CPU temperature monitor this editor has seen for AMD’s current-generation FX processors. I said appears because few people know the actual core temperature: we've had issues with AMD’s thermal diode being inaccurate at any temperature more than a few degrees from its thermal threshold, and trying to take a reading from the heat spreader yields a result several degrees lower than the core.
Fan speed controls are independent for four of the five system headers.
Clock speeds are fully adjustable over a wide range, with CPU clock and voltage level adjustments verifiable in third-party programs like CPU-Z. Settings can also be saved as profiles and enabled at boot.
The OC DNA menu provides only BIOS info and secondary access to overclocking profiles.
Intelligent Energy Saver offers minor power savings via CPU voltage regulator phase idling.
ASRock’s XFast RAM provides RAM Disk functionality at no additional cost to the buyer. Though it runs under 64- and 32-bit Windows, its most interesting capability is addressing memory capacities beyond the 4 GB limit of 32-bit operating systems.
Restart to UEFI gives users quick access to BIOS, without worrying about how quickly they can hit the Del or F2 keys. Unlike competing solutions, it requires an operating system to employ.