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Thread: My Athalon's current state (still MIA)

  1. #1
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    Unhappy My Athalon's current state (still MIA)

    Okay, Terrancelam and Bren should both pay attention here, since I need help (and you still owe me that one from your "generous" day). I'm calling in my IOU.

    Anyway, to refresh on the specs of the machine, here it is:
    300w PSU
    Abit KT7A-RAID mobo
    1.2 GHZ (266) Athalon w/ SK6
    256~512 MB Crucial PC-133 SDRAM
    40 GB IBM 7200RPM HD
    Creative 12X DVD-ROM
    Asus V8200 GeForce 3
    SB Live 5.1
    floppy, and enough cooling to freeze hell

    Okay, now if anyone remembers the story from the summer, it was basically that the computer was just UNSTABLE. It would crash, hang, reboot, freeze, and just basically piss me off. Things like Max Payne and 3D Mark 2k1 would NOT run, with Payne freezing at the exact same time into the first menu.

    So fast forward to today, when I finally got a cable to use for my HD (was without one for a while). I rip a few things out of the computer, mainly the SB Live and one of the 256 meg sticks of ram, and started over (again).

    FDisked, formatted, and installed Windows 98SE. Installed the latest 4n1's, as well as the updated USB drivers, display drivers, DirectX, etc. Everything seems relatively stable at this point, although I've done nothing to stress it. For once, I can pop in a DVD, and it'll play without Power DVD crashing, so that's good. But with the SB Live out, I can't tell if the audio works for this or anything else. The BIOS was also flashed somewhere in there, and the RAID controller disabled for the time being (not being used).

    Now, when I go to run Max Payne or 3D Mark 2k1, I'm getting the same results. 3D Mark will basically freeze before the first demo, and even a control-alt-delete won't fix it. Max Payne still freezes about 2 seconds into the main menu. So I'm assuming I'm basically at the same point, but that also means I'm still stuck.

    I don't know WHAT the problem is anymore, nor do I have any real indication of what it COULD be. At this point, I'm looking for anyone's suggestions on what could possibly be done. We've gone over a lot, from the PSU (more than enough juice, and a decent one), the cooling (more than enough to make this ROOM cold, about 10 fans total + the SK6 & a Delta on the CPU), to the SBLive/VIA problems.

    The only things I can think of that would help you help me is some of the SiSoft Sandra tests. I figure I'll benchmark the cpu and all shortly, maybe even try the burn-in wizzard. But I'm really at a roadblock here, as to how to get this up and running without any stupid problems.

    So, ANY help would be appreciated, especially since I've had most of these parts practically SITTING here (yes, that INCLUDES the GF3) since late June, and I'd really like to USE what I paid for.

  2. #2
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    I can try that, but I don't believe that could be the problem here (although it can't hurt to test it anyways). Why would a bad stick of ram work fine for most things, but...freeze when running Max Payne or 3D Mark? If anything, that would point towards the video card, and I know for a fact that it works perfectly fine.

    Like I said, I'll try it, but I don't think a stick of ram is screwing up on some things, and not others.

  3. #3
    SG Enthusiast HongKongPolice's Avatar
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    What are the voltage readings from Hardware doctor? If they're jumping around quite a bit, then you've got a dirty PSU
    Abit KR7A-Raid
    Palomino 1.4Ghz @ 1.57Ghz @ default voltage /w DTek Spir@l block 512MB Crucial DDR @ 300Mhz CAS222 ATi OEM Radeon8500 @ 295/275 vmem=3.5v, would of gotten GF3 if they had better filters..... 3Com 905 TX SoundBlaster Live OEM 120gig Western Digital Special Edition (8MB Cache) 20gig Fujitsu 5400rpm (gonna get another WD1200JB for Raid0 soon) LiteOn 24x burner Enermax 350watt PSU (voltage modded) Dell P1110 21" Sony FD Trinitron tube @ 1792x1344 85Hz

  4. #4
    Forum Techie terrancelam's Avatar
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    Sorry for the inactivitey

    I've been hard at work doing school stuff heheh..ahh Yea, alright a few things, Jim I would definately consider a more powerful PSU, I remember having a great deal of problems with my 300Watter on my 1.4ghz t-bird. I personally recommend about a 350W for general stability and ocing issues.

    Next, as for the freezing, two things, pull out each stick and test them individually. The mobo is known to be a picky biatch when it comes to ram.

    As for the voltage readings, you can get them in Bios, tell us how they look currently with your 300W psu.

    BTW the SB Live 5.1 is known to have SERIOUS issues with this board, a few fixes for it, but other then adding 3 to the PCI delay in the bios and getting the latest driver from Creative, not much I can help you with here. I had the choice between that and the PCI 128 and I got hte PCI 128.

    BTW are you using a NIC?

    Hope we can resolve this soon.
    Intel Core 2 Duo Q8300 2.55Ghz (1333mhz)
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  5. #5
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    Re: Sorry for the inactivitey

    I've been hard at work doing school stuff heheh..ahh Yea, alright a few things, Jim I would definately consider a more powerful PSU, I remember having a great deal of problems with my 300Watter on my 1.4ghz t-bird. I personally recommend about a 350W for general stability and ocing issues.
    I'd probably agree with that under most circumstances, but there's really not that much running off it (fans on or off). Hell, I've got a PII 400 w/ 2 cd drives (one dvd, one cdrw), 2 hd's, a voodoo3, a dvd decoder board, a dv board, a sound card, and a network card; all running off a 200 or 250w PSU, so I don't think that having almost nothing connected can be MORE than what a 300w PSU can handle.

    Next, as for the freezing, two things, pull out each stick and test them individually. The mobo is known to be a picky biatch when it comes to ram.
    I'll try that later, and maybe I'll even "borrow" some sticks from some friend's computers to make sure.

    But once again, I don't think its the ram since it seems to benchmark out fine.

    As for the voltage readings, you can get them in Bios, tell us how they look currently with your 300W psu.
    ***I'll edit this post with the voltage readings shortly.***


    BTW the SB Live 5.1 is known to have SERIOUS issues with this board, a few fixes for it, but other then adding 3 to the PCI delay in the bios and getting the latest driver from Creative, not much I can help you with here. I had the choice between that and the PCI 128 and I got hte PCI 128.
    That's why I'm doing this WITHOUT the 5.1 for now.


    BTW are you using a NIC?
    Not yet, but eventually I'll throw one in.


    Hope we can resolve this soon.
    Me too.

  6. #6
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    Originally posted by TigerUpperCut
    What are the voltage readings from Hardware doctor? If they're jumping around quite a bit, then you've got a dirty PSU
    Hardware doctor?

  7. #7
    Forum Techie terrancelam's Avatar
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    Well

    Let's just say that the T-bird is not like a P4, this thing is like a hoover! It's just sucks up that power, trust me on this one. Even ask Brent on this one, but it's up to you, if you don't want to get a new PSU, but try and "borrow" one that is higher wattage.

    As for the ram, I had the exact same problem where things would freeze up like you, except my problems extended over to I.E and all of my Office 2000 stuff as well. Got ride of the piece of crap ram and got a new powersupply and things have been running smooth since, but we'll get to that part later hehe.

    Last post for the night for me, it's already 1 am here in Toronto, got school at 8:30am, see you sometime in the afternoon.
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    Western Digital Black 640gb x 2 Raid 0
    Coolermaster 1000W Modular PSU
    Antec NSK4480B
    Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

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  8. #8
    SG Enthusiast HongKongPolice's Avatar
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    Hardware doc is the prog that comes with your mobo for monitoring voltages, fan RPMs, and temps, itz on your abit CD or on abit's website
    Abit KR7A-Raid
    Palomino 1.4Ghz @ 1.57Ghz @ default voltage /w DTek Spir@l block 512MB Crucial DDR @ 300Mhz CAS222 ATi OEM Radeon8500 @ 295/275 vmem=3.5v, would of gotten GF3 if they had better filters..... 3Com 905 TX SoundBlaster Live OEM 120gig Western Digital Special Edition (8MB Cache) 20gig Fujitsu 5400rpm (gonna get another WD1200JB for Raid0 soon) LiteOn 24x burner Enermax 350watt PSU (voltage modded) Dell P1110 21" Sony FD Trinitron tube @ 1792x1344 85Hz

  9. #9
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    It's seems to be you got a problem in graphic intensive stuff. It might be not enough power is being give to the Geforce card by your motherboard. Download Powerstripe, set your AGP settings to 1X, and test some graphic intensive stuff again.

  10. #10
    try updating the voltage in the bios for more stability; you can try flashing your bios with a new updated one

  11. #11
    Forum Techie terrancelam's Avatar
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    Whatever you do

    don't flash your bios at the moment.
    Intel Core 2 Duo Q8300 2.55Ghz (1333mhz)
    Asus P5N-D
    OCZ Platinum 8gb (2x2gb) PC8000 1000mhz 5-5-5-18
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    Western Digital Black 640gb x 2 Raid 0
    Coolermaster 1000W Modular PSU
    Antec NSK4480B
    Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

    ----------------------------------------------------------
    HP TC5700 (Thin Client) 1ghz, 512mb 80gb 1x1000mb NIC 1x100mb NIC running PFSense 1.22
    Linksys WRT-150 running DD-WRT V.24 (Access Point)

    "SG Techies rule!" - Sig Buddies with Amro

  12. #12

    Re: Whatever you do

    Originally posted by terrancelam
    don't flash your bios at the moment.
    why not?
    ________________

    try upping the core voltage of your CPU in your bios...i remember the same thing happened to me a while back with my 1.2GHz CPU, it wouldn't run at deault speeds stable, like when i play halflife it would freeze, but then i upped the core voltage a bit, and it was stable as ever, then i bought a new PSU and ran the core voltage back to its normal setting, then it was purely stable...hope this helps
    Last edited by newbie69; 10-15-01 at 07:14 PM.

  13. #13
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    *This has to be split up in order to post all the pictures*

    Okay, grabbed a few numbers and stuff.

    In the bios, it lists the Core Voltrage as 1.750v and the I/O Voltage as 3.40V. I assume this is normal since its the default that was set for this processor.

    NOTE: Any pics, benchmark scores, etc. are with EVERYTHING as "compatible" as possible. That means there has been NO optimization of ANY kind, no tweaks, nothing. So if the scores are a low, that's the reason.

    And also, I'm not sure WHAT information is needed, but it can't hurt to have too much. So there's just some of the Sandra and other shots "just in case".


    WCPUID





    There's two shots from the VIA Hardware monitor here. The voltages changed a tiny bit every once in a while, so I decided to post both pictures:




  14. #14
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    Part II

    SiSoft Sandra:









    Many of the Sandra results are in this text file, so if there's something specific you're looking for, its probably in here:

    Sandra Results


    The Asus hardware monitor:


    How hot can that really get? Seems a bit cool, and I wonder how far I can OC it without stressing it too much...


    3D Mark 2k actually ran completely this time:



    However, once again, 3D Mark 2k1 would NOT run (in fact, it wouldn't even get to the first test before locking up). Max Payne would lock up too, right at the same points I've said before. However, the Q3 demo and the Serious Sam demo both worked without any problems, so I'm kinda puzzled here. I don't think its a DX8-related thing since NONE of the 3d Mark 2k1 demos would run, and because I used the EXACT same DX8 installer and vid card drivers on another computer that ran everything just fine.

    Overall, the system seemed a bit more "stable" than it has been before, EXCEPT when it came to the gaming. And considering this is the machine I plan on using for my gaming, I'd like to rectify that. But I'm still kinda clueless as to what the problem actually is, and hopefully someone here can figure it out.

  15. #15
    SG Enthusiast HongKongPolice's Avatar
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    nono, install the WinBond Hardware Doctor (should be in your mobo CD). It gives realtime voltage readings of everything, and if its flucuation a lot, your PS is giving dirty power. BTW your +12v is kinda low, @ 11.71 in SiSandra and 11.53 in the Via monitor. Thats a difference of .18 which is quite a bit. I have a feeling it is your PS, Hardware doc gives realtime readings so it'll be a much better indicator.
    Abit KR7A-Raid
    Palomino 1.4Ghz @ 1.57Ghz @ default voltage /w DTek Spir@l block 512MB Crucial DDR @ 300Mhz CAS222 ATi OEM Radeon8500 @ 295/275 vmem=3.5v, would of gotten GF3 if they had better filters..... 3Com 905 TX SoundBlaster Live OEM 120gig Western Digital Special Edition (8MB Cache) 20gig Fujitsu 5400rpm (gonna get another WD1200JB for Raid0 soon) LiteOn 24x burner Enermax 350watt PSU (voltage modded) Dell P1110 21" Sony FD Trinitron tube @ 1792x1344 85Hz

  16. #16
    SG Enthusiast HongKongPolice's Avatar
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    BTW, your CPU bench is quite low for a 1.2Ghz.... Something is really wrong, unless you had progs running in the background when you did the bench
    Abit KR7A-Raid
    Palomino 1.4Ghz @ 1.57Ghz @ default voltage /w DTek Spir@l block 512MB Crucial DDR @ 300Mhz CAS222 ATi OEM Radeon8500 @ 295/275 vmem=3.5v, would of gotten GF3 if they had better filters..... 3Com 905 TX SoundBlaster Live OEM 120gig Western Digital Special Edition (8MB Cache) 20gig Fujitsu 5400rpm (gonna get another WD1200JB for Raid0 soon) LiteOn 24x burner Enermax 350watt PSU (voltage modded) Dell P1110 21" Sony FD Trinitron tube @ 1792x1344 85Hz

  17. #17
    Forum Techie terrancelam's Avatar
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    Number 1

    Consider getting a new PSU, it seems your voltages are quite a bit below normal. A 350W should solve that issue and if you want some extreme ocing, a 431Watt should solve any stability problems relating to power.

    Nextly, it seems from your WCPUID stuff that you don't have alot of your videocard features enabled. Such as sideband addressing and etc.

    Hmm upping the vcore may help you a bit, if you decide to stick with you old PSU.

    As to why you shouldn't flash the bios, well the newer bios have tended to cause some conflicts and for some wierd reason, people have experienced some instability with them(Specificly to the Abit KT7A).

    So have you tested the ram individually yet? And are you having any problems with surfing the net or your computer freezing on you?
    Intel Core 2 Duo Q8300 2.55Ghz (1333mhz)
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    OCZ Platinum 8gb (2x2gb) PC8000 1000mhz 5-5-5-18
    EVGA 460GTX 1gb PCIE 2.0
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    Coolermaster 1000W Modular PSU
    Antec NSK4480B
    Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

    ----------------------------------------------------------
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  18. #18
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    Originally posted by TigerUpperCut
    nono, install the WinBond Hardware Doctor (should be in your mobo CD). It gives realtime voltage readings of everything, and if its flucuation a lot, your PS is giving dirty power. BTW your +12v is kinda low, @ 11.71 in SiSandra and 11.53 in the Via monitor. Thats a difference of .18 which is quite a bit. I have a feeling it is your PS, Hardware doc gives realtime readings so it'll be a much better indicator.
    Actually, I havn't seen that. The VIA Hardware monitor that was on the cd gave, what I'm assuming, is real-time voltage readings. It fluctuates a bit, but nothing major (like 11.47v~11.53v)

    I'll look for that program though (unless you have a link to a copy online).


    Originally posted by TigerUpperCut
    BTW, your CPU bench is quite low for a 1.2Ghz.... Something is really wrong, unless you had progs running in the background when you did the bench
    Like I said, there were NO optimizations of any kind, meaning EVERY setting EVERYWHERE (in windows, the bios, etc) were on the lowest possible setting. And I had quite a few things open at the time, although none were working. When things are completely up and running, I'll take a real benchmark.

  19. #19
    Forum Techie terrancelam's Avatar
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    hmmm

    btw have you tried upping the vcore up a bit to see if that solves your instability issue?
    Intel Core 2 Duo Q8300 2.55Ghz (1333mhz)
    Asus P5N-D
    OCZ Platinum 8gb (2x2gb) PC8000 1000mhz 5-5-5-18
    EVGA 460GTX 1gb PCIE 2.0
    Western Digital Black 640gb x 2 Raid 0
    Coolermaster 1000W Modular PSU
    Antec NSK4480B
    Windows 7 Professional 64-bit

    ----------------------------------------------------------
    HP TC5700 (Thin Client) 1ghz, 512mb 80gb 1x1000mb NIC 1x100mb NIC running PFSense 1.22
    Linksys WRT-150 running DD-WRT V.24 (Access Point)

    "SG Techies rule!" - Sig Buddies with Amro

  20. #20
    Elite Member Jim's Avatar
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    Re: Number 1

    Note: I am determined to get this solved, no matter what happens. This thread will NOT die until I'm done!


    Originally posted by terrancelam
    Consider getting a new PSU, it seems your voltages are quite a bit below normal. A 350W should solve that issue and if you want some extreme ocing, a 431Watt should solve any stability problems relating to power.
    Its starting to look that way, but that still doesn't explain why it'll lock up for one thing, and not another. And I'm not going to be too jumpy to buy a new power supply (it would likely be a 431w then) unless I am POSITIVE that it is the ONE AND ONLY reason for my problems (and if it is, I'll kick myself for getting "only" 300w (damn, 300w used to be too much ).


    Nextly, it seems from your WCPUID stuff that you don't have alot of your videocard features enabled. Such as sideband addressing and etc.
    Once again, nothing was changed from the defaults. So the BIOS probably set the AGP at 2x, and all the other stuff like that. I'm not going for performance until I can get stability.

    Hmm upping the vcore may help you a bit, if you decide to stick with you old PSU.
    :/ I might end up trying that. What do you suggest I up it to (its set at 1.750v as of now)?


    As to why you shouldn't flash the bios, well the newer bios have tended to cause some conflicts and for some wierd reason, people have experienced some instability with them(Specificly to the Abit KT7A).
    I already flashed the bios a few weeks before. And althought that could cause problems, its at least been working "better" than it did before I did so.


    So have you tested the ram individually yet? And are you having any problems with surfing the net or your computer freezing on you?
    A) Not yet, but I'll probably test the ram either tonight, or tomorrow night.

    B) There is nothing installed other than what's in the first post. So there's no modem or network card, and its not connected to the internet. I might switch the stuff from this computer to that one just to try it, but as of now, its not online.

    Freezing? Depends what I do. Like I said, I can do stuff like Photoshop or play Serious Sam just fine. But open up Max Payne, 3d Mark 2k1 or some other things, and bam, its frozen.

    Also, another question. Since I most likely won't be using any SBLive cards in this for the compatibility reasons (does that apply to the Audigy cards as well?), what sound card would you recommend I get for this? I'm looking for something roughly on par with a SB Live or Live 5.1 (so the 128 is kinda out of the question).

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