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Last post Author Topic: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...  (Read 24783 times)

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #50 on: November 10, 2006, 04:34:21 AM »
Oh well new system up and running ... what a nightmare it has been ...

The mobo temperature sensors are really bizarre. Yesterday it said my CP was 29C - pretty good - but my mobo board temperature was 52C !! I was really worried about that until I tool the cover off and touched the heatsinks on all the chips and none were even warm!!! It was 27C during POST after being unplugged all night in an unheated room. Obviously the sensor isn't working properly.

I was particularly worried because I installed a fresh copy of windows and it kept freezing and behaving oddly. Suspecting memory I ran MEMTEST86+ and it came up with no problems. It seems to be partly that GEFORCE cards don't like running in VGA mode without drivers combined with the chipset not liking the drivers for my WiFi interface.

Having removed the WiFi card (and plugged into the router with a LAN cable) and installed all the latest nVidia drivers for the motherboard and video everything seems to be stable now so I will prbably trash the installation and start again with a fresh install with the latest drivers and leave installing the WiFi card until the end and after I get a full installation backup.

One oddity - I installed the nVidia WDM drivers and most of the devices associated fired up without problem but the "WDM capture" device says it can't start. Anyone encountered this and know how to fix it?

I send back the Graphics card I ordered because the fan was absoultely massive and took up one of 3 PCI slots - instead I have bought two BFG GeForce 7300 GT OC which I am running in SLi mode. Haven't really done much to test them yet but they look good. Strange thing though the nVidia drivers I downloaded from the website installed without problem but the ones that came on their own driver CD wouldn't install - they just kept saying 'can't find and compatible hardware' !!! Strange - not a problem though as I would have updated to the latest drivers anyway. Another odd thing is that SLI on these cards doesn't require the SLi bridge connector (this took a phone call to the US to establish) as there are no edge connectors on the board. It is definitely running in SLi mode though as it instantly recognised the cards and asked me to enable SLi when the computer started up.

Final setup (without all the usual USB nonsense that I have reinstalled yet) ...

Antec NeoHE 550W Modular ATX2.0 PSU
Asus A8N32-SLi Deluxe nForce4 SLi X16 (Socket 939) PCI-Express Motherboard - Deluxe
AMD Athlon 64 3700+ San Diego (Socket 939)
Corsair 2GB DDR XMS3200C2PT TwinX (2x1GB) CAS2
Western Digital Caviar SE16 320GB 3200KS SATA-II 16MB Cache
2 x WD Caviar PATA 160 Gb
Seagate 400Gb USB drive
Plextor DVD+-R/RW
Pioneer DVD+-R/RW(DL)
2 x BFG GeForce 7300 GT OC 256MB (PCI-Express)
Hauppauge WinTV HVR-1100 Freeview TV Tuner
Creative Audigy ZS 2 Pro
? Netgear Wifi ? Bummer if I can't get this to work!

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #51 on: November 11, 2006, 04:31:23 AM »
I ran MEMTEST+ for hours and memory probs started to appear - which would explain all the oddities.

I have now removed the Corsair memory and put in my old Crucial DDR 2700 memory while I RMA the Corsair stuff. Ran MEMTEST+ over night and the Corsair is rock solid.

System now flying along and seems stable.

Strange glitch with my Wireless PCI card seems to have been fixed by swapping cards around the PCI slots - lets hope it stays that way!

cranioscopical

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #52 on: November 11, 2006, 07:42:21 AM »
Quote
System now flying along and seems stable.
Well done!
Hope the new box satisfies you for as long as possible :up:

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #53 on: November 11, 2006, 07:46:00 AM »
 :D

dk70

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #54 on: November 11, 2006, 10:55:52 AM »
What happens - check Corsair support forums if you get suspicious of something http://www.houseofhe...604b1a8d8d&f=128

Memtest must pass but in itself is not enough to prove 100% stability, not under any circumstance. Try Prime95 Blend test for many hours, set it to use 1gb so you can still compute. Prime95 is much more sensitive to timings, will tricker error where Memtest crunches on. Relevant if you overclock, tweak or ram is only 99% happy with motherboard or the other way around.

When I first ran test on newly bought Corsair ram they failed no matter how much I screamed. Could not figure it out, had read Memtest guides etc. Was sure timings were SPD, no mistakes. Went to Corsair and found others had same experience and a few had found solution. Use correct voltage! Corsair state voltage to be 2.7-2.8v - will encourage an increase if any problems. They also did that with my ram. Wrong. They use many different chips in their sticks, see http://www.houseofhe...owthread.php?t=44365 and it just happens that the one used in mine will not work properly with more than 2.6, may be 2.65. 2.7v and it fails even Memtest. List does not includes all chips btw, only those "inquired". Well, lowering voltage cured all problems and made Corsair investigate - weeks later they kept repeating standard reply of increasing voltage though. The opposite is true to other sticks with exact same Corsair model name - all depends on characteristics of chip used. Version number plus serial number identify chip.

My ram was of course misread by bios, timings all wrong. Make sure you get 2-3-3-6 as result of SPD/Auto. If not set them manually, as with voltage this is sometimes required.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #55 on: November 11, 2006, 08:18:01 PM »
Thanks dk70 - I have RMAed the Corsair sticks I have now for a replacement - if I get problems with those I will definitely try tweaking a bit.

The trouble is I can't find a clear guide on how to tweak memory timings and voltages. The RAM I had was 2-3-3-6-2T but the automatic BIOS values didn't reflect that (it was set to 3-3-3-8-Auto). As I understand it (which is not much) the BIOS auto settings are more relaxed and the suggested values are tighter therefore the auto BIOS ones should work and tweaking them to the tighter settings are only likely to make problems worse. I haven't checked the voltage settings and am not sure what they should be anyway!

Can anyone point me to a simple guide on how to set the correct timing values (there seem to be loads of cryptic values that can be tweaked but I am not sure if I set the standard values 2-3-3-6-2T whether or not I should tweak any of the other values or if they should be left alone) and how do I find the correct voltage settings?

The BIOS does seem to set the Crucial memory timings automatically to the suggested values on Crucial's site.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2006, 08:19:59 PM by Carol Haynes »

dk70

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #56 on: November 11, 2006, 10:50:46 PM »
Corsair is very well documented, except for a few details like with my ram. Look it up at their site, they will have a little pdf-file for each model but punch in keywords (searchbox works with no registration) at their forum. Popular motherboard and popular ram will have more than 1 "victim" :)

2-3-3-6 and 2.75v they say. Opposite of logic you should not expect slower to work, all depends on chip. Corsair will tell you to set up timings manually. What you see in Memtest86 must be correct. Default voltage could be 2.6 so also set voltage, bios cant do that automaticallly.

There are loads of other settings but no need to fiddle. But you should get on top of Asus features like AI NOS and PEG LINK. Check their website, see manual. If you go by default, install what you are told Im not sure pci-e video cards are not overclocked. Chipset can do that and more. Best to disable all that until more familiar with the beast. All these auto-tweaking features are not needed at all. Very easy to overclock/tweak manually. Your Nvidia drivers can take care of video, no need for Asus bios to get involved. At their website bookmark download page for AN832 SLI DELUXE. Get latest version of Asus Probe. Flashing bios should not be needed but keep eye on changelog. Beside that and chipset drivers you dont absolutely need more. Well you will want AMD cool&quiet driver http://www.amd.com/g...182_871_9706,00.html scroll down to "AMD Athlon™ 64 Processor Driver for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 Version (exe) 1.3.1" Should also be on install cd.

Looking at manual:
(Im guessing most of it but will bet you can look what matters up at Corsair - or any Asus forum.

4.3.7
Here you see "Build date" of bios, probably also seen at bootscreen. Compare with Asus latest bugfixes at download page and see if any are relevant.

4.4.2
I would enable the Cool thing. I think default is mostly Enabled on NF4. Today there are few issues and it does lower temp/power consumption. Like it was not low enough ;) Should you start to use manual overclocking settings it can be disabled since it will have a hard time doing magic.

4.4.3 Where the fun are.
AI overclocking settings I have doubts about. Default is "Auto" but from manual it looks like you have to use "Manual" in order to "unlock" ability to change voltage. You can see that in menu straight away. Dont use "Standard", "Overclock Profile" or "AI NOS".

CPU FSB Frequency should be 200. Options determined by AI overclocking setting. "Manual" here lets you set 201, 202 and so on.

SB to NB - dont touch

Adjust PCIE Frequency - dont touch

PEG Link Mode - Auto is default, I would change to "Normal" = disabled, as said get to know what PEG Link does before using it. Is not needed at all. Again check some reviews like http://techreport.co...n32-sli/index.x?pg=1

A bunch of "Over-Voltage" settings - disable all of them.

DDR Vcore - is at "Auto" and could be wrong for your ram. Set it to 2.75v as Corsair say they have tested with. I would guess Auto means 2.6v.

FID/VID - no need to change "Auto" unless cpu is not detected properly. This is where you overclock manually. Manual unlocks next 2 settings.

Processor Frequency Multiplier - A 3700 will use 11 as multiplier.

Processor Voltage - should be 1.4v but I dont think all cpus, even same models, necessarily use same voltage. Dont remember what AMD calls it but something like "estimated". Could be 1.45v. Bios will pick that up automatically, is "written" on cpu so you can check with Asus Probe. But just keep FID/VID on auto and you cant fiddle with this.

DDR Clock Skew - definitely dont touch unless you find information at Corsair forum telling you.

4.4.4
1T/2T Auto will probably give you 2T. Test first with that, then try 1T. Gives a little boost and Im pretty sure most Corsair users will want 1T. Popular opinion is only crap ram cant do 1T. More about how well ram is in sync with bios/chipset than actual quality of ram. Not a matter of price either.

Memory setting - From the top: 200mhz, 2.5, 3, 6, 3. Rest is finetuning. Again, dont touch unless other users tell you it make sense. Check Corsair forum again.

4.4.5
Dont touch

4.4.8
Very important to disable "Legacy USB Support" since known to tricker false Memtest86 errors. Yes they say Auto means disabled if no devices detected but best to disable manually. Also mentioned in Corsairs guide on how to run Memtest86 http://www.houseofhe...owthread.php?t=38201

4.5.5
Asus Q-Fan should be enabled I think. Bios can control rpm according to what must be a preset of heat values. Some NF4 bios lets you select a value where fan should run 100% then 80% etc. Q-Fan might be controlled by software, Asus Probe perhaps. Even with overclocking you can probably make use of this since cpu runs so cool. No need for 3500rpm, more like minimum and medium during heavy load. May be newer bios than the one shown in manual have this, no reason not to enable. Also enable fan alarm should it get disconnected, same with cpu overheating. Might as well let bios do this.

Note what it says at 2.4.2 With 2 modules always use DIMM A1 and B1. Other combinations probably work but not so stable = Memtest86 errors or worse. Actually A1 and A2 could be the most stable but then you have not activated both channels and run single mode!

All the onboard gadgets you can disable/enable according to use. Best to do that before installing a million drivers in XP.

Silly bios if you ask me. Safe to fiddle with though, as safe as any other bios... Should it go all wrong then you just reset cmos and start all over with the many screens. May be 1/4 deserve attention, only a handful really important.

If all works out then you could go low power consumption and try 2.7v for ram, or 2.65v. Why use more than needed? Cant be sure what real voltage is delivered anyway. First checking Corsair forum for same mb/ram combination is good idea. For this you need more sensitive testing like Prime95 as I mentioned http://www.mersenne.org/freesoft.htm Fire it up, chose Torture test and rest is matter of time. SP2004 has a better interface for P95 code http://sp2004.fre3.com/ does the same. Let it run while you zzzzzzz is best advice, 6 hours is minimum.

Should you get very experimental like trying 2-2-2-6 and 1T with 2.6v then remember it takes 1 second to blow up XP registry ;) Always use Memtest86 if you are not sure to get passed login. I would guess 1T works just fine but dont let XP be first program to test. Ram is about the only thing that is risky to play with, can be a pain to tweak/overclock. Cpu you and chipset can throttle up and down with mhz/multiplier not so with ram.

Btw, dont install Nvidia Firewall. Sometimes part of general chipset installation, sometimes separate.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2006, 11:11:27 PM by dk70 »

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #57 on: November 12, 2006, 06:02:45 AM »
Thanks - that is really useful.

Actually one of the things I did was to go through the BIOS and turn all the autos off because I noticed the CPU was being auto overclocked and the FSB was too so I set them to stock values. I decided it was simpler to turn off most of the "Auto" settings even if I don't change the Auto value manually it is easier to debug instability if you know things are behaving properly.

Since doing this and changing to my Crucial PC2700 RAM 2x1Gb I have had a rock solid system. I have also managed to sort out the WiFi issues by updating the Hauppauge TV card drivers (after that there don't seem to be any issues).

Over the years I have given advice on troubleshooting new systems - especially knock back the hardware to absolute basics until you achieve something stable and then add items piecemeal - shame I haven't followed my own advice in this case  :-[ :-[ :-[

I have used Prime95 before and have downloaded the latest version, but I also found "Hot CPU Tester" which actually runs lots of different stress tests on different parts of the system (including memory) ... you can use the 'Lite' version free.

The nVidia firewall installed automatically but I have removed it again as it was very annoying - since then I have reinstalled Windows again so I have a clean system.

dk70

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #58 on: November 12, 2006, 01:10:32 PM »
There are many test programs but the most picky is Prime95 so that is why I mentioned it. Very sensitive, way too much actually but then you have some distance to where things gets unstable. Only relevant for you because of memory, cpu cant be unstable when not overclocked. Cpu temp you get can be compared to gaming on a summer day, not close to a problem with no overclocking. Memory is always tweaked in some way, not plug and play like cpu. Anyway, if you read P95 authors stress.txt which should be in download you know what to do. Cant test 3D so other tools or better games must be used. You got some SLI to test. Where it gets complicated is when any 2D stuff is perfect, P95 can run for days but 3D is shaky. Most likely 3D releated but can still be a timing settting like 1T/2T. Some games like those with Unreal engine are picky with memory timings. You should not notice or care that much when not overclocking but if memory dont really like chipset/bios/your settings then prepare yourself.

With so complicated bios and so many drivers it is not easy to do your own foolproof troubleshooting. Best to research a little and take advantage of others experiences (mistakes). Im assuming you have one of the later bios versions so flashing should not be needed - will bet Asus changelog have tons of fixes since original.

Asus have a little forum for each model, for AN832 SLI Deluxe http://vip.asus.com/...&SLanguage=en-us

Nvidia have made a pdf file about overclocking/tweaking for their NF5 chipsets www.nvidia.com/content/nforce5/DU-02451-001_v01_overclocking.pdf  Much is relevant for NF4 as well, a chapter about "Disable AMD C&Q" for example.

A really good overclocking guide which also explains chipset, bios terms and most importantly show how to test properly is http://www.short-med...p?print=r&id=300 Manual overclocking forces you do know these things. Very few things really. Has never been easier to overclock/setup. So easy it is build into chipset/bios and motherboard makers throw oc-software at you. You could pick a "5%" Asus preset but I hope you change the 3-4 settings manually instead - then you get more like 20-25% :) They are not stupid and so keep maximum levels down to a point where it is unlikely to cause problems for people.

As said I dont like their auto stuff too much but check those who have actually used them. Perhaps they work better today after some bugfixing. Remember though that most speed of NF4 speed comes from cpu. Making memory stable is first priority, not overclocking/tweaking it. But do enable 1T, the memory tweak with most impact - except timings the only one! Overclocking pci-e gives very little if anything and directly overclocking video cards I think is best done by Nvidia drivers, alternatively Rivatuner or other 3rd party programs. Asus "dynamic" overclocking where 2D is cool/slow and 3D gets a boost sounds nice but I dont like it :) I do exactly the same for my video card though, a tool lowers rpm/mhz in 2D and go max in 3D. Make sense for video hardware (and my ears). Cpu, memory couldnt care less. Asus allows you to keep a Cool&Quiet setup while still doing some overclocking where any guide/advice would tell you to turn it off when leaving default. Dont make the 2 approaches conflict.

You have nTune? Nvidias diagnostic tool http://www.nvidia.co...tune_5.05.18.00.html Not too bad and show all this in bright colours. Can overclock Nvidia video cards as well, anything can be monitored. Might be better than Asus tools. Compare readouts with Asus Probe.

Nvidia SLI Zone, join Club SLI??? http://www.slizone.com/page/home.html May be better to bookmark Nvidias regular user-to-user forums http://forums.nvidia...inid=5&setskin=1 Pretty good. You should have at least 2-3 Asus/chipset related sources bookmarked.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #59 on: November 13, 2006, 10:39:50 AM »
Thanks - there are loads of great links there ...

Now I am back using a wired LAN  :down: :down: :down: :down: :down: :down: :tellme:.

I really don't know what gives with my WiFi card - my system seems to run fine so long as I don't try and access the internet via WiFi !!!

I reinstalled my Corsair RAM and tweaked all the BIOS settings to the recommended settings and I still get memory errors - now I have sent it back for a replacement! I ran MEMTEST86+ overnight on my older Crucial PC2700 and get no errors at all.

I ran Prime95 Torture test for 3 hours this morning - no problems at all.

Tried to look at a webpage and crash!

It's really frustrating as it seemed to be sorted for a couple of days. I reinstalled windows but I am still getting the same crashes and I notice that even on a fresh install the NetGear app keeps popping up the TaskManager list with brief 16-20% CPU usage even when the system is idle. All very strange - I can only presume there is a driver clash somewhere but there are no conflicts in the device manager and it is running on an IRQ on its own.

The only other problem that I can see is if there is a PCI problem - but my Audigy sound card and HaupPauage TV card both work fine.

Any ideas how to troubleshoot this? I have emailed NetGear and posted a request at ASUS forums so we shall see what happens. (NetGear email tends to be pretty slow and unhelpful).

dk70

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #60 on: November 13, 2006, 12:21:43 PM »
May be Netgear have new firmware? Each product have a page at their site. Also take a look at DSLreport, especially their forum about Netgear http://www.dslreports.com/forum/netgear

http://kbserver.netg.../products/wn311b.asp 28.09 you got 1.2? No changelog but check forums/Google

Now you know how Nvidia Firewall have worked for many. Its low level drivers are gone? System properties, show hidden devices, non-plug&play devices - "NVTCP" NVIDIA TCP/IP Protocol Driver ?

Nothing to do about ram than hope next modules work. If same error experiment with voltage, not timings. They should be able to run at rated timings. Also try 1T vs. 2T. Who knows if they demand 1T. Ive had expensive ram on NF4 which was close to unstable, 1T meant BSOD instantly. Now I got cheaper Corsair 4000PT and never a problem. You run into these problems no matter chipset, never plug and plug.

So ram is probably defect but these type of problems are typical of new computer. In 1 week situation will be better.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #61 on: November 14, 2006, 07:27:13 AM »
Frustrated and confused ...

I seem to have finally got WiFi working again ...

I have been running nTune's System Stability Test for two hours, on top of that I have had Windows Media Player playing music, HaupPauge TV card showing Digital TV and Firefox downloading 3 CD sized files as well as processing 40 open DC windows at a time.

Is it finally stable? Who knows, probably turn it on again tomorrow and find WiFi is screwed again!

Any ideas on how to distribute IRQs in Windows XP more sensibly? (I seem to remember the answer is no for this)

Currently I have IRQ 18 assigned to:

4 Hauppauge TV PCI related devices
1 GeForce Graphics card PCIe
1 Firewire/1394 device controller

The upshot is that analogue TV has interference lines across the screen.

I don't want to swap the cards around again because I have finally got my Audigy and NetGear's card on unshared IRQs.

I thought PCIe were handled separately from PCI cards? How do they end up sharing IRQs for the PCI bus ??

By the way do you know if I should have Plug'n'Play OS enabled or disabled in the BIOS for Windows XP? It is disabled by default and I know that was correct for earlier versions of Windows?

dk70

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #62 on: November 14, 2006, 02:13:30 PM »
Well you can force manual control of irqs but you dont want to. Motherboard is not designed for that. Sharing is not a bad thing, cant be avoided and some "conflicts" are meant to be. However you chose which pci slot to use, what you can do. Judging from 2.5.3 in manual I would use slot 3 for the most picky/important pci card. The other two share with video card(s). Actually my tv-card share with video card and no problems. Trial and error with this. Ive seen same lines on NF2 motherboard, tv-card didnt work well under some conditions because SATA was tied to pci-traffic - not really documented anywhere.

Plug&Play setting dont matter, XP overrules. At least as long as you have APIC enabled. Dont disable or XP wont boot. If you really want to try non-APIC then "Computer" driver must be replaced in XP first - then reboot and disable APIC in bios. I bet setup will be worse than what you have to deal with now, not even worth an experiment. Motherboards have been designed to take advantage of APIC since forever.

In theory you cant have a problem with all these virtual wonder irqs http://www.microsoft...sysperf/IO-APIC.mspx http://www.microsoft...em/sysperf/apic.mspx

Ive read you can reset XP hardware configuration and let it redetect on next reboot. Should be necessary sometimes, I guess if XP dont react to your moving cards about or to onboard feature being disabled. Dont expect a logic saying X disabled means XP put Y at "free" irq. As said many irqs are fixed and cant be overtaken.

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #63 on: November 14, 2006, 06:02:23 PM »
Yes that's what I thought (experience in the past and MS KB) but it is getting a little ridiculous that it doesn't matter which slot I put the WiFi card in it causes problems.

I'm really fed up with Netgear - their support is completely useless - I have been submitting requests for over a month and haven't yet had a single piece of advice from them. They do respond - but just to say it is to hard for them and someone else will contact me, when they do they ask for system specs etc. and after sending them in I never hear any more. Complete waste of time as far as I can see.

Given that I can't get it to work - even with Netgear "support" I am tempted to RMA the card and try the USB version - at least that won't be tied to PCI IRQs in the same way.

Currently I have the Netgear card showing up in my Devices list without a driver (!) and I am using a cable to the router to get online. Even so it says that the WiFi card is allocated to IRQ 5 (which would be unshared), but when I install the device driver Windows changes the IRQ assignment and it ends up shared with a graphics card and a 1394 interface.

At one point in all this fiddling I ended up with graphics card, sound card, network card and PCI bus management all on one IRQ - no wonder the mouse moved sporadically around the screen - that IRQ must have been almost permanently high!

Looking at the manual (p. 2.18) I guess if I disable the RAID, onboard LAN and 1394 then only PCI slot 3 should be shared - but I am guessing that Windows IRQ allocation will screw up any logic there - plus when I disabled onboard LAN Windows refused to boot at all - I would have to reinstall it all with the BIOS set that way - and then presumably it would screw up if in the future I needed to reenable the onboard LAN.

I'm almost at the point where I am going to settle for a wired LAN connection and forget WiFi, but given that I bought 270Mbs WiFi card I don't see why I should settle for a 100Mbs wired connection!

Anyone else reading this think of any possible solutions?

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #64 on: November 18, 2006, 03:16:32 PM »
Fair enough I sent a scorching email to NetGear UK Customer Services complaining about their lack of response from technical support (this was after spending 37 minutes on hold waiting to speak to someone). Surprisingly I got a phone call yesterday (even though I hadn't given them my telephone number and I am ex-directory!) and they have offered to swap my PCI card for the new 270Mbps USB adapter. In some ways this suits me even better as it leaves me with an extra PCI slot if I need it in the future. Hopefully it will work  :huh:

dk70

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #65 on: November 18, 2006, 08:59:03 PM »
Sometimes that is all one can do. I have a little Netgear router myself but when I had to get some wireless stuff for a friend I went with Linksys. Some months ago but popular opinion was not in favor of Netgear. Any in the WRT54 series are better so I read http://www.linksys.c...mon%2FVisitorWrapper

Ok so we can add NET setup to major pains in the butt when getting new computer. Ram and net then.

1-2 years ago Netgear had a very active userforum, not any more. Bad sign. Now you can sign up for a membership but I dont really see the benefit. 

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #66 on: November 19, 2006, 05:05:44 AM »
1-2 years ago Netgear had a very active userforum, not any more. Bad sign. Now you can sign up for a membership but I dont really see the benefit. 

I agree as their online help stinks - I had over a month of "Hello my name is XXXX. I can't help but I know a man who can - he will contact you shortly". I did get contacted but only to ask for details I had already supplied. The only troubleshooting advice they gave was try the card in a different computer!

Actually I move to NetGear because I didn't have an altogether smooth experience with LinkSys. My router (WAG54g) dropped internet connections a lot and to use a computer upstairs I needed a booster antennae on PCI cards and a range expander. At the time they only did one which only supported WEP security and was a pig to set up. I have to say the WiFi PCI cards were good though. I also bought a LinkSys printer sharer which worked OK but only gave minimal support to printers (so most of the options in the Canon printer utilities window didn't work properly - such as ink levels and paper out). All in all Linksys didn't impress me too much with the quality of thought that went into products.

I put all my old Linksys stuff for sale on Amazon Marketplace and sold the lot.

Having bought NetGear 802.11n router and PCI cards I actually made a profit on the deal! (I bought 2 Router/PCI card packs from overlcolckers which were cheaper than the PCI cards on their own, and sold one of the routers for nearly list price - which was what I paid for the combination).

Even running my main computer at the moment via a cable to the router I am getting much faster speeds with the NetGear stuff and my internet connection is rock solid.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #67 on: November 24, 2006, 06:29:04 PM »
A happy ending - and a new support beginning (HELP) ... why is nothing ever simple?

Well I was impressed - scorchingly fast turnaround from Netgear. They sent a courier to collect the WiFi card and sent a replacement USB based device within 48 hours. I was impressed !!!

The USB device is dinky and works well - my network connection is now solidly at 270Mbps. My only criticism is that the USB2 chord is very short (barely 2 feet long) which is ridiculous. Only that I have it plugged into a USB hub on my desktop it would normally be buried behind my desk - not an ideal location for WiFi reception!!

Anyone know if it is possible to extend USB2 cables with an extension cable without causing headaches?

As part of my big purchase I decided to use a couple of 120Gb WD Caviar drives as 'network storage' and bought a Netgear SC101 box to put the drives in. It then connects to the router via a LAN cable and the drives can be partitioned (and even mirrored) from network clients. Partitions can be private or shared and you can opt to password protect content. All seems ideal and indeed I was really impressed with the ease of use - switch on an Explorer shows up a new disc drive.

Problems arose though when I re-installed NOD32 antivirus - now when I start windows the SC101 drivers crash out and unfortunatelyt have a big knock on effect on the system which has to be restarted in safe mode and the SC101 drivers removed. The driver service for the netgear device (Zetera Service) faults and wants to send a fault log to MS but the faulting module is IMON.DLL (according to the log file) so obviously they don't play very well together (which is a great shame). I have reported the problem to ESET(NOD32) and Netgear so I can only hope a solution is found. In the meantime can anyone recommend a free lightweight AV solution I could try until the NOD32 problems can be resolved?

Just to check the issue I installed the Netgear drivers on another system with NOD32 and experienced the same problems.

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #68 on: November 24, 2006, 08:17:02 PM »
Quote
FWIW, I've pretty much come to the conclusion that the best action is to acquire a new machine and hope to get 2 (maybe 3) years out of it before a combination of obsolescence and desire for new toys moves it down the chain, to be replaced by another. 
  Thus, a brand new machine becomes my main machine; my main machine turns into reserve box 1; reserve box 1 goes to my wife (who has absolutely no interest in a machine for its own sake and wants only a minimal, stable platform); my wife's box turns into back-up machine; backup machine goes to wherever seems like a good idea at the time

chris' solution is the one most used in my family as well.

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #69 on: November 25, 2006, 07:00:03 PM »
About the AV I think you are stuck with Avast if you want HTTP scanning. Dont think there is much difference between the same old free versions from AVG, Avira, Avast - Avira seems to be moving fast though - nice pricing too. Avast is still the most complete package, most features and options.

AOL have a free AV based on Kaspersky engine, some dont like EULA but could be the most "secure". http://www.wildersse...ght=active+shield+AV

I searched "imon zetera" and ran into a post about compatibility problems similar to yours. Was from 2005 so may be not easy to solve.

Seems Netgear have relaunched userforums http://forum1.netgear.com/index.php

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Re: Mobo dying .... suggestions please on upgrading my system ...
« Reply #70 on: November 26, 2006, 04:42:53 AM »
Thanks I have gone with free AVG as a temporary measure until I see if I can get ESET/Netgear to sort out the problem with NOD32.

No probs with AVG so far.