Asus A8N32-SLI (bios 02.58) reports: 2288 MB out of 4096 MB usuable ? (Skybuck's Dream PC 2006)

Discussion in 'Asus' started by Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006.

  1. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Hello,

    Skybuck's Dream PC seems to only be able to use 2288 MB of RAM at the
    moment ?!?!?!?

    When I go into the bios (version 02.58) it reports only 2288 MB usuable
    out of a total installed memory of 4 GB.

    I could try changing the memory chips around in a different slot but I
    don't think that would make much sense... because the chips are
    detected as 4GB... and if only 2 chips could be used it should have
    reported only 2048 MB usuable... so the problem seems to be something
    else.

    I also have 1 GB of video ram... and 64 MB of soundblaster ram... and
    maybe some harddisk ram etc..

    I read some story about how this memory address space is supposed to be
    reserved... I am not sure if this applies to soundblaster/harddrives as
    well.. let's do some calculations:

    4096 MB - 1024 MB = 3072 MB

    3072 - 64 MB = 3008 MB

    So according to my easy calculations the Dream PC should have at least
    3008 MB of RAM available ?

    This explanation doesn't fit does it...

    So what's going on ?

    Why can my Dream PC only use 2288 MB of ram ?

    The memory modules are:

    Corsair Memory TWINX2048-3200C2
    ASSY IN TAIWAN

    Document Number: 45-00012 (that's probably an marketing document)

    SHIT

    I just checked the manual...

    The manual says it only support A and B for this memory.

    It doesn't support C

    Support C is necessary for 4 memory sticks.

    Damn.

    I could have sworn I checked for this support.

    Maybe I selected different memory in a previous design version or maybe
    the manual I downloaded from the internet says something else...

    (By the way the manual says black and yellow slots... in reality it's
    black and blue slots ;) )

    I am gonna check the manual I downloaded from the internet... hold on.

    Yup.

    The manual I downloaded from the internet is a newer manual than the
    manual I got with the board.

    The manual I got with the board is Revision E2236.

    The manual I got from the internet is Revision E2280.

    So maybe I need to update the bios.

    That means a BIOS FLASH IEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEKKKKKKKKKK.

    Well I want what I payed for.

    I want the maximum ;)

    So me go look into bios updates etc.

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #1
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  2. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Hello,

    I have an another little nice complaints for you:

    I can't find the bios version in the bios menu.

    Well it does show some kind of version number which was 02.58...
    apperently this is the version of the bios menu software or something
    ???

    Apperently one has to boot the computer and then simply press the pause
    button real fast... and then on the boot screen it says:

    Bios version 0903.

    One would have to press tab as well if you want to see that screen. Or
    you can turn off that logo screen in the bios... that's what I did..

    Ok now I go figure out if a newer bios will support 4GB's of ram =D

    Because I don't wanna flash for nothing that's dangerous ;)

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #2
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  3. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Good thing I decided to get the 7-in-1 floppy drive/card reader as well
    =D It really helped me out while testing the cd/dvd-rom drive and now I
    can use it to backup my current bios.

    I also bought a nice box of 10 floppy disks of FUJIFILM as recommended
    by the website where I bought the floppy drive.

    Even the box of floppy disks is awesome lol !

    I can actually close the box so no dust will come into it lol !!!!!

    I bought two boxes of floppy disks of IMATION and those boxes couldn't
    be closed... so the disks got full with dust... at least some of
    them... <- BAD BAD ;)

    Fortunately for me I had a nice plastic see through box where I have 10
    utility floppy disks... for example ghost software and an ms-dos
    bootdisk... and a very nice windows 98 startup disk <- which is
    something else as a bootdisk ! As I already wrote in another post a
    long time ago :) A windows 98 startup disk has nice drivers included ;)

    Well I just wanted to pad FUJIFILM on the back for doing a nice job
    with the floppy disk case lol.

    Finally some manufacturer with a brain lol :D

    Bye,
    Skybuck ;)
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #3
  4. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Well this is what I did:

    I made three floppies:

    A red one (windows xp 64 bit startup disk, actually it's just a boot
    disk)
    A yellow one (to back up the old bios)
    A green one (with new bios rom on it)

    I reformatted all disks just to be sure they are readable. I think you
    should do this before creating a bootdisk because windows will
    otherwise perform a quick format when creating a bootdisk and that
    might be bad.

    I also forgot to place the afudos.exe (ami bios update tool) on the
    bootdisk.

    I also placed this file on the other two floppy disks.

    You need three floppy disks because the ROM size is 1 MB. The manual
    fails to mention this but ok.

    The first time it went horrible. The yellow floppy disk was unreadable
    ? This might be caused because afudos wasn't on the red boot floppy
    disk.

    Anyway I noticed the file was missing so I went to windows xp 64 bit
    and placed the afudos.exe on the red floppy. Then I booted again and
    test time I tried it directly to the floppy... after reading the bios
    it reported a write failure... not enough disk space.

    So I tried a test to the second floppy this time it worked. I thought
    to myself... maybe dos cached the afudos.exe so I did a fresh reboot.

    Now comes the real deal.

    This time I did a fresh reboot. Replaced the red boot disk with the
    yellow bootdisk. I performed a bios backup test. That went well, I
    deleted the TEST.ROM... now I backed up the bios to A8N0903.ROM that
    went well.

    I took out the disk and replaced it with the green floppy. I renamed
    A8N321~3.ROM to A8N1103.ROM.

    Then I flashed the bios.

    So the whole process went as follows (a bit shorter but this is how it
    should go):

    1. Red floppy in (boot)
    2. Red floppy out, yellow floppy in. (backup)
    3. afudos /oA8N0903.ROM (bios backed up)
    4. Yellow floppy out, green floppy in. (new bios)
    5. afudos /iA8N1103.ROM (bios flashed)

    I could not use control-alt-delete to reboot so I simply pressed the
    reset button.

    I followed the manual instructions and let windows boot from harddisk.

    Before I could do that a warning and a choice came on the screen:

    "CMOS Checksum failure" or something like that.

    What is this ?

    The manual does not mention it.

    I think this probably has to do with the settings of the bios which are
    now resetted so that could explain.

    I choose "load default settings and continue".

    Windows xp 64 bit booted etc.

    I checked the system settings and I could have sworn that it said: "3.3
    GB of RAM" available. (I also could have sworn that the boot screen
    displayed 3.3 RAM checked as well or something like that)

    I was excited and wanted to go back into the bios menu so I restarted
    the system.

    I noticed that windows xp played the shutdown song real fast I never
    noticed that before so I am not sure if it's normal.

    Anyway I went back into the bios and went to the system information
    tab.

    There it still said: 2288 MB ram usuable...

    I was like huh ?

    So I rebooted again into windows xp 64 bit.

    And now I still have 2288 MB available ?

    How strange is that !?

    Maybe if I shutdown the power it will be better...

    Or maybe it's a windows xp 64 bit issue ?

    Or maybe I was just dreaming ????????????? huh ?

    To be continued I guess.

    I am not going to flash the bios with the same version again that's for
    sure ;)

    The bios version says 1103 so that's good.

    However the menu software is still at 02.58

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #4
  5. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Well this is what I did:

    I made three floppies:

    A red one (windows xp 64 bit startup disk, actually it's just a boot
    disk)
    A yellow one (to back up the old bios)
    A green one (with new bios rom on it)

    I reformatted all disks just to be sure they are readable. I think you
    should do this before creating a bootdisk because windows will
    otherwise perform a quick format when creating a bootdisk and that
    might be bad.

    I also forgot to place the afudos.exe (ami bios update tool) on the
    bootdisk.

    I also placed this file on the other two floppy disks.

    You need three floppy disks because the ROM size is 1 MB. The manual
    fails to mention this but ok.

    The first time it went horrible. The yellow floppy disk was unreadable
    ? This might be caused because afudos wasn't on the red boot floppy
    disk.

    Anyway I noticed the file was missing so I went to windows xp 64 bit
    and placed the afudos.exe on the red floppy. Then I booted again and
    test time I tried it directly to the floppy... after reading the bios
    it reported a write failure... not enough disk space.

    So I tried a test to the second floppy this time it worked. I thought
    to myself... maybe dos cached the afudos.exe so I did a fresh reboot.

    Now comes the real deal.

    This time I did a fresh reboot. Replaced the red boot disk with the
    yellow bootdisk. I performed a bios backup test. That went well, I
    deleted the TEST.ROM... now I backed up the bios to A8N0903.ROM that
    went well.

    I took out the disk and replaced it with the green floppy. I renamed
    A8N321~3.ROM to A8N1103.ROM.

    Then I flashed the bios.

    So the whole process went as follows (a bit shorter but this is how it
    should go):

    1. Red floppy in (boot)
    2. Red floppy out, yellow floppy in. (backup)
    3. afudos /oA8N0903.ROM (bios backed up)
    4. Yellow floppy out, green floppy in. (new bios)
    5. afudos /iA8N1103.ROM (bios flashed)

    I could not use control-alt-delete to reboot so I simply pressed the
    reset button.

    I followed the manual instructions and let windows boot from harddisk.

    Before I could do that a warning and a choice came on the screen:

    "CMOS Checksum failure" or something like that.

    What is this ?

    The manual does not mention it.

    I think this probably has to do with the settings of the bios which are
    now resetted so that could explain.

    I choose "load default settings and continue".

    Windows xp 64 bit booted etc.

    I checked the system settings and I could have sworn that it said: "3.3
    GB of RAM" available. (I also could have sworn that the boot screen
    displayed 3.3 RAM checked as well or something like that)

    I was excited and wanted to go back into the bios menu so I restarted
    the system.

    I noticed that windows xp played the shutdown song real fast I never
    noticed that before so I am not sure if it's normal.

    Anyway I went back into the bios and went to the system information
    tab.

    There it still said: 2288 MB ram usuable...

    I was like huh ?

    So I rebooted again into windows xp 64 bit.

    And now I still have 2288 MB available ?

    How strange is that !?

    Maybe if I shutdown the power it will be better...

    Or maybe it's a windows xp 64 bit issue ?

    Or maybe I was just dreaming ????????????? huh ?

    To be continued I guess.

    I am not going to flash the bios with the same version again that's for
    sure ;)

    The bios version says 1103 so that's good.

    However the menu software is still at 02.58

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #5
  6. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    To help track down any possible bios bugs:

    The only thing I did after installing bios 1103 is this:

    I went into the menu, check all menu's, then I changed these two
    settings:

    1. Quick boot, disabled
    2. Logo, disabled

    And then I saved it.

    I notice how the memory checking only goes until 2288 MB...

    So I can see the following possibilities:

    1. Maybe the loop code is causing problems ?
    2. Maybe the options enabled/disabled are causing problems ?
    3. Maybe the save is causing problems ?
    4. Maybe the memory is somehow damaged ?
    5. Maybe the memory is in the wrong slots... ? (4 chips).
    6. Maybe some other memory settings has to be enabled...
    Maybe memory hole enabled ? (I don't know if it's on or off)
    But the notes for the bios 1103 mention something about this...

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #6
  7. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    I found this link:

    http://www.planetamd64.com/lofiversion/index.php/t16839.html

    It says to enable the memory hole.

    I tried this and now windows system and the bios see:

    3.76 GB of ram.

    However my soundblaster x-fi elite pro is now causing random sound
    problems and glitches and noise. Scary stuff.

    I should have not update the bios and first tried this memory hole
    thing... so now I am not sure what is causing the noisy plups etc.
    Maybe it's just some electricy in the system.. or maybe it's
    troubleeee...

    So two possibilities:

    1. Bios 1103 causing sound problems with X-Fi Elite Pro soundcard

    or

    2. Memory hole enable causing sound problem with X-Fi Elite Pro
    soundcard.

    or

    3. Just some random electricy in system. Seems unlikely though.

    I will shutdown everything reboot and progress from there.

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #7
  8. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    I shutdown everyting and rebooted and the sound problems remain.

    I was definetly right about sounds suddenly playing faster.

    Could thing I made a backup.

    I am going to put bios version 0903 back... and then enable the memory
    hole.

    I hope all works well..

    and I hope the flash didn't damage anything or so..

    Here goes..

    See you back in a few minutes I hope =D

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #8
  9. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Hi,

    Fortunatelly for me I am back again hehe. That means the bios flash
    went well.

    The bios is now back at version 0903 and the sound problems are gone...
    Thank god ! I don't want no stupid, scary sound problems like with the
    p3v4x motherboard of 6 years ago... no sir bob ! ;) :)

    At boot screen it did report a warning again... cmos checksum
    failure... I guess that's normal after flashing abios.

    I went immediatly into the bios screen... and there I loaded the
    default settings.

    The only settings I changed were:

    1. Quick boot disabled.
    2. Logo disabled.
    3. Memory hole enabled.

    I also looked at system information... It reported 3 GB available 1 GB
    installed lol.

    That is a known issue with bios 0903 but it's only a display issue it
    seem.

    Also during the normal boot screen it also displays these numbers
    wrong.

    But the good news is the memory hole trick worked.

    Windows XP 64 bit is now seeing 3.76 GB or ram.

    That's still not a full 4GB of ram which is a bit strange... but still
    a lot better than only 2.2 GB of ram ;)

    Let's see what's missing:

    4 GB - 3.76 = 240 MB missing...

    That's kinda strange... but I'll take it.

    The only last thing I must report is that I saw something new during
    the boot... in dos/text...

    It said:

    Checking NVRam.

    I think that means checking nvideo ram... what was it doing I wonder
    ???

    Well so far so good...

    If I run into any further problems I ll report back in this thread.

    I'll also create a new thread how to enable this memory ;) and how to
    prevent soundbugs hehe :D ;)

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 14, 2006
    #9
  10. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    I am still having sound problems.

    For example.

    While loading Battlefield 2 Demo for a short time the sound goes weird.

    Also when running Civilization 3 Conquest... when I switch to another
    game for example Microsoft's FreeCell... then I missplace a card on
    purpose and then I get this hard BEEEP like an error sound which is not
    normal.

    I'll go into the bios and disable this memory hole to see if that
    prevents it ;)

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 15, 2006
    #10
  11. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    I disabled hardware memory hole and the problem remains as described in
    the previous post... I also tried enabling some services but that
    didn't help either...

    Kinda strange...

    I also had a system crash earlier while playing battlefield 2.

    The event log shows a windows bug or something.

    Hopefully it's not a hardware problem but a software problem ;)

    Though I think these problems begain as soon as I flashed my bios ? hmm

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 15, 2006
    #11
  12. Skybuck

    Craig Sutton Guest

    You need to take it back to the dealer and get them to set it up PROPERLY
    rather than all this stuffing around fiddling when you obviously don't have
    much a clue.
     
    Craig Sutton, Apr 15, 2006
    #12
  13. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    Thanks for the lack of fate lol.

    "I find your lack of fate desturbing" NOT ! =D

    Bye,
    Skybuck =D
     
    Skybuck, Apr 15, 2006
    #13
  14. Skybuck

    John Lewis Guest

    BIOS/nForce4/X-Fi issues... that seems awfully familiar....

    Does your X-Fi have a heat-sink on the DSP ?
    If not it is probably old stock, return to Creative for exchange.
    Otherwise for firmware update. And the new version of either may or
    may not work of course............... Or better still, exchange
    immediately for an Audigy.

    The trials of the X-Fi with nForce4 motherboards are well known. FOR
    THE PAST 5MONTHS. Noise, static etc.

    See:-

    http://forums.creative.com/creativelabs/board?board.id=soundblaster

    and specifically the umpteem-page thread that starts with this
    message:-

    http://forums.creative.com/creativelabs/board/message?board.id=soundblaster&message.id=31426

    ( ignore the reference to fatal1ty -- the problem affects all members
    of X-Fi family.. the first poster just happened to have a fatal1ty...)

    In this thread it is amusing ( in a horror-story way) to witness
    Creative continually stonewalling and/or blaming MB bios.
    Seems like a design-issue causing sporadic interrupt conflicts. Seems
    to vary according to motherboard variant, bios version, and some
    reports on non-nForce4 systems.

    I removed X-Fi from my purchase list several months ago for
    a new ((A8N32-SLI) system that I built before Christmas, after I saw
    these reports. Creative and flaky first-generation designs are a very
    well-known couplet.

    Always good to <<technically>> research all your purchases thoroughly
    before taking the plunge. Never, ever believe any marketing blurb or
    the so-called technical reviews, without also checking real-user
    experiences. Google is your essential friend in this research !!
    ( Anyway, the only version of the X-Fi, if it worked, that is not a
    TOTAL rip-off is the cheapest Extreme Music. Fleece the suckers
    otherwise - 64meg of on-board memory for $100+ extra bucks that only
    a handful of games supports and for minimal benefit. And the toy
    interface hardware for another $100. ]

    Anyway, no problem for you. Just take the digital optical output of
    your on-board audio to your DD amplifier/receiver and all will be
    well. Not the analog. Like all on-board audio on any high-performance
    ATX motherboard there is analog crosstalk between the CPU
    ground-current ( ~ peak 100 amps) and the audio output circuitry.

    BTW, instead of all the drivel you are posting on your PC build, you
    could have done yourself a real favor by posting a full and CONCISE
    list of all the components you were seriously contemplating purchasing
    BEFORE you took the plunge. I did not see any such list. If I had, I
    would have immediately warned you off purchasing X-Fi until Creative
    coughed up a full technical explanation of the problems AND
    identified the rev versions of genuinely-fixed product, <confirmed by
    those who originally reported problems.>

    You might indeed find one BIOS that works better than another. Kinda
    restrictive on Bios updates, huh ?

    But Creative has not come clean with a CONFIRMED fix ON THEIR
    X-Fi HARDWARE, and afair no BIOS documentation for any of the A8N
    series indicates a X-Fi fix, after 5 months of reports -- thus guess
    where the problem really is?

    John Lewis
     
    John Lewis, Apr 15, 2006
    #14
  15. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    I am starting to believe the bios settings play a role in the problems.

    So again two possibilities:

    1. Some hardware is damaged

    or

    2. Wrong bios settings..

    Hmmm

    The problem is... what are the correct bios settings ???

    Since apperently the settings are not saved when the bios is stored...
    <- bad :(

    I played around with some bios settings and now the sound problem is a
    bit different.

    Gonna try some more settings...

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 16, 2006
    #15
  16. Skybuck

    Skybuck Guest

    I just tried to play Battlefield 2 full... after joining a server the
    game crashes back to the desktop.

    I also noticed that the audio setting were on software and had lot's of
    noise... Then as soon as I switched to creative x-fi all the noise was
    gone.

    Could be a cpu or windows xp 64 bit software issue ?

    Bye,
    Skybuck.
     
    Skybuck, Apr 16, 2006
    #16
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