Something is broken

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pigmonkey
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 10:09 pm UTC

Something is broken

Postby pigmonkey » Wed Jul 02, 2008 10:20 pm UTC

So, I just built a new computer with all new parts, and some piece of hardware, somewhere, is broken. I have done a lot and gathered a lot of information and have yet to deduce what the problem could be. An opinion or two on what I should look into for a faulty component would be nice. Numbered list for easy referencing.

  1. XP install: computer would restart while copying files
  2. Vista install: computer would stop at a black screen
  3. chkdsk /r: it would stop at 50% and inch up every 5 minutes
  4. Western Digital boot check: Pass on Quick and Long Tests and wrote zeros fine
  5. memtest86: it got to test 7 and froze with some random characters in the top part of the screen
  6. Knoppix Boot CD: Got to the hardware init part and would sometimes freeze and put a few random characters on the screen, sometimes dump a LOT of text and colors, sometimes get to the background+mouse and freeze
  7. Knoppix Boot CD with HD removed: Same exact results, almost assuredly
  8. Swapped out ram DIMMS one at a time and tried different SATA ports, still no difference in the above categories
  9. Temps are fine in BIOS
  10. Voltages are okay on the RAM and CPU, for everything else I don't know what to look for
  11. During boot, the processor is correctly identified on the second line (E8400 @ 3.00GHz), but on the first line it says "747MHz(83x9.0), 2 CPUs" -- normal?
  12. Knoppix Boot says "E8400 @ 3.00GHZ 3000MHz, 64 KB Cache" -- 64 KB Cache?

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headprogrammingczar
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Re: Something is broken

Postby headprogrammingczar » Thu Jul 03, 2008 12:58 am UTC

Damn. The only thing I can help with is the last two points.
# During boot, the processor is correctly identified on the second line (E8400 @ 3.00GHz), but on the first line it says "747MHz(83x9.0), 2 CPUs" -- normal?
# Knoppix Boot says "E8400 @ 3.00GHZ 3000MHz, 64 KB Cache" -- 64 KB Cache?
The first line might be the RAM. The 747MHz seems like a possible speed for RAM. The second point I can explain better. The 64kb cache is a memory unit on the processor, placed to assist the processor and increase speed. The larger the cache, the more different unique operations the processor can remember. 64kb is not bad; mine is 108kb. You probably don't need a large cache with such a quick processor. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CPU_cache knows more.
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enk
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Re: Something is broken

Postby enk » Thu Jul 03, 2008 6:46 am UTC

64KB is the L1 cache. The L2 cache is the one that's 6 MB.

And 747MHz(83x9.0) is definitely wrong. 9 is the CPU multiplier of the E8400 and the other number is the FSB, which should be 333 MHz.

What motherboard is this? Are you sure it supports the Wolfdales? Have you done a BIOS update? Tried CMOS reset?
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pigmonkey
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 10:09 pm UTC

Re: Something is broken

Postby pigmonkey » Fri Jul 04, 2008 4:24 pm UTC

The ram is running at 800mhz like it should right now. I can check the BIOS again but I do not recall ever seeing any clock speeds at 83. Also, thanks for the clarification on the cache, I knew one of them was supposed to be high, but I didn't realize the L1 was so small. Makes sense now. Lastly, on return to newegg to find the link to the motherboard, I saw something that hit me in the face like a truck.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6813188013
Support Intel Wolfdale with BIOS update from EVGA.com


So now I feel really stupid. I won't be able to try this until tomorrow, but I'll post again then and see if that will do the trick. Thanks for the replies.

pigmonkey
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 10:09 pm UTC

Re: Something is broken

Postby pigmonkey » Sun Jul 06, 2008 8:51 am UTC

That did it. Shit, do I feel like a retard now. Thanks a ton.

zero10
Posts: 20
Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 3:03 am UTC

Re: Something is broken

Postby zero10 » Tue Jul 08, 2008 10:07 am UTC

There are worse things in life. I was troubleshooting a board the other day which had recently received a BIOS update that broke the on-board BIOS update utility, and unfortunately also caused serious stability issues keeping you from reliably getting to a DOS boot disk to re-flash the BIOS. Don't ask how it ends, it wasn't good.

At least yours was recoverable :)


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