VT7, PT880, instability caused by VIA AGP driver on Windows XP SP2?

Discussion in 'Abit' started by Dave C., Sep 22, 2004.

  1. Dave C.

    Dave C. Guest

    Just want to know if anybody else has seen this before. I've got a VT7
    version 2 Via PT880 chipset board with BIOS version 14, and a P4 3.0E
    Prescott, and 2 X 512MB Kingston RAM. It was running Windows XP Pro SP2
    with all the latest drivers properly loaded. Though this shouldn't cause a
    problem anyway, I had it configured so that there were no shared IRQs.
    There were no conflicts showing in Device Manager. This board was massively
    unstable if the DRAM bus was set to dual channel mode. Odd thing is, the
    RAM was good. How do I know?

    - It works fine in SINGLE channel mode on the VT7 . . . fast as Hell and
    rock-solid stable
    - It works fine in DUAL channel mode on an nforce2 chipset board
    - memtest86 will run all night with no errors if each single ram board is
    tested individually
    - memtest86 will run all night with no errors if BOTH RAM boards are
    tested in the VT7

    But if you enable dual channel on the VT7 board, with GOOD RAM installed . .
    - System will often shut down during boot
    - System will shut down instead of restart, or restart instead of shut
    - System will lock up intermittently for no apparent reason, and will
    only respond to a hard reset
    - System will halt intermittently at BSOD, giving various messages to the
    effect of hardware is bad, return to vendor or RAM is bad, etc.

    Basically, it REALLY looked like I had bad ram, even though the RAM was
    recommended by Abit, and the RAM worked fine in single channel mode, and
    worked fine in dual channel mode in a different motherboard.

    Now the mystery. Thinking this might be a hardware problem with the
    motherboard or a chipset driver issue, I did some research and ran across a
    blurb on the VIA web site stating (basically) don't install the VIA AGP
    driver on Windows XP, or you'll be sorry. (!) It hinted of stability
    problems caused by the VIA AGP driver (hyperion 4-in-1 4.53). The
    recommended fix was to uninstall it.

    So I ran the 4-in-1 installer to UNinstall the AGP driver. Rebooted and of
    course it took a few reboots for windows to repair the chipset. Then had to
    reinstall the nvidia drivers for my FX5900XT and reboot a couple times to
    allow Windows to pick up all the parts of that and re-discover my monitor.

    Now the system is rock-solid stable again. Has anybody else seen this
    problem where the VIA 4-in-1 AGP driver causes massive instability that
    looks suspiciously like bad RAM? Obviously VIA is aware of a problem or
    they wouldn't have it posted on their web site. But I ran several google
    searches on this issue while I was troubleshooting it, and nobody else seems
    to have seen this specific problem. I find it hard to believe I'd be the
    first to see this. Anybody else seen it? -Dave
    Dave C., Sep 22, 2004
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  2. Dave C.

    Storm Guest

    Dave, with a brand new K8T800 based MSI Neo2, Athlon 64 3500+ and a
    RADEON 9800 PRO I am getting the VERY same... still struggling... and
    I have tried so much... waiting for a GURU intervention...
    Storm, Oct 2, 2004
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  3. Dave C.

    Vince Guest

    This board is CRAP and the VIA chipset is flawed.

    Just go here and see the problems:
    Go to forums on VIA chipset

    I had tried to fix a customer VT7 and in the end I forced the supplier
    to RMA the board... the only way. I even tried the latest BETA bios
    V1.4 and it fixed nothing.

    Only solution is to RMA.
    Vince, Oct 22, 2004
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