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Thread: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?




  1. #1
    Ken429 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    I'm still running on the defunct 1.33 BIOS version. I see 1.40 BIOS has been released. Before I take the leap, I would appreciate any good or bad feedback/experience with the latest BIOS for the Z97 Extreme6 MB. Thanks.

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    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    Hey Ken, I've been using UEFI 1.40 since shortly after it was released, so for a full three weeks.

    I've had no problems with it besides one possible very small exception, which I'll describe shortly. Personally, I would not hesitate to suggest using it to anyone using the Z97 Extreme 6 board. That is from a person that was unable to use UEFI 1.30, since it caused endless "POST loops" (my terminology) on my board immediately after the update. I did not have that with UEFI 1.40. I never used UEFI 1.33, which as you know is no longer available.

    I have since installed Windows 8.1 on a new SSD with 1.40 on the board, and had no problems and it runs fine.

    The only thing that I thought was not quite right was with a new option added to the Chipset Configuration screen, "SB DMI Link ASPM Control". It may be enabled or disabled.

    ASPM is Active State Power Management.

    SB refers to "South Bridge", an obsolete term IMO that describes one of the pair of the CPU/board support chips used on mother boards, Northbridge and Southbridge, thus the term "chip set". Intel has not used a pair of chips since their 5 series chipsets (excluding X58, which used two), and the now single chip is called the PCH, Platform Controller Hub. The Z97 chip is a PCH type. The term chipsets now really refers to the multiple models of PCH chips Intel has for each CPU generation. This only applies to Intel, although AMD has recently changed to a single support chip design with some of their processors. SB can be considered a generic term, I guess.

    DMI is Direct Media Interface, which is the communications channel between the PCH and the CPU. It is similar to the PCIe interface.

    Anyway, this option is yet another power saving feature, and given what I have read can have all kinds of sub-options and sub-features, and I don't know to what extent this option enables or uses them.

    The first time I enabled it for an experiment, after using 1.40 for a few days, when I restarted the PC I was greeted with a black screen. Since I changed nothing else in the UEFI, I blamed that on this option. I had to power cycle the PC to get back into the UEFI and disable the option. Afterwards the PC booted fine, and has been fine since then.

    I started a thread about this option about two weeks ago, asking if others had problems with it, and hoping that ASRock might offer some more information about it. I did not get one reply to that thread.

    When I started to reply to your question, I decided I would try to enable SB DMI Link ASPM Control again, since I have not tried it since my first apparent bad experience with it. So I enabled it, and the PC restarted fine and I'm writing this post with it enabled and all it well so far. You of course may ignore this option, and I can't describe any benefits about it since nothing is obviously different in the hardware monitoring program I use.

    Short version of this story, IMO UEFI 1.40 is fine, and given some of the apparent issues others posted about 1.33, I would choose 1.40 over 1.33, period.

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    Ken429 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    Thanks for the information. First rainy day I'll make the leap to 1.40 and keep you posted if I have any issues with it.

    I had a minor setback with my Extreme6/4790K system - I cloned the system from a Z77 W8.1 system on a Mushkin 120GB SSD to a Crucial MX100 512GB SSD. All seemed ok for a couple of days except for a bunch of Event Log Warnings and the Schwab StreetSmart Edge program would not initialize - in fact it hung the system. After much trial and tribulation I gave up and did a fresh install of W8.1 to the MX100 SSD and that cleared up all the problems! Lesson learned - don't Clone (backup/restore) a W8.1 Z77 system to a Z97 system using Acronis TI 2014 and/or don't go from a 120GB SSD to a 512GB SSD using TI with a BIOS Version 1.33?!

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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    Moving an OS installation to a different platform (chipset, mobo hardware) is difficult and rarely works right. The cloning software is not the cause of any issues as long as it does its job correctly. A poor job would be obvious when cloning to another drive for use on the same system. I've done that with Acronis and had fine results.

    Consider when you install an OS, you then (should) install the chipset software (INF files) first, as that identifies the hardware on the board. All the following driver installation programs depend on that to various degrees. If we don't run the chipset installation program for the new platform on the other platform's OS installation, the OS struggles to work correctly. Plus the Windows registry has incorrect entries. Then the Intel IME software for a Z77 chipset running on a Z97 chipset and processor, that's a generation different platform.

    If you can reinstall software like this then fine, if not you're asking for trouble.

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    Ken429 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    parsec,

    This is not the first time I have used Acronis TI in the last 10+ years to copy an operating system from one device to another for use on a new or additional system. That is what got me in trouble, I have great confidence in the offline bootable version of Acronis TI to get the job done. I also read somewhere that W8 was pretty good a recognizing the MB it was operating on and adjusting accordingly. It did, and let me install all the new Extreme6 Z97 drivers etc. with no apparent problems. I had been running the system for several weeks and it was rock solid.

    Then...I decided to upgrade to the MX100 512GB SSD and that's when thing went slightly south. Although, the only program that seemed to have a problem was the Schwab trading program which makes extensive use of Windows communication stuff. I probably could have eventually figured out what was screwed up in the registry but conceded a fresh install was the best alternative since I was jumping two chipset generations and playing with a relatively new and different SSD controller.

    Bottom line, it was good that I had to do a fresh install because there probably was something going on even before I changed SSD's that would eventually have caused something to go amok.

  6. #6
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    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    Oh shoot, HOW could I forget!!

    Windows 8, 8.1, etc, has Refresh and Reset options, which are not the same as a Restore point.

    The Refresh option lets you keep your programs, but otherwise is as close to a fresh installation as possible. You need to install drivers after a Refresh, but that's the good thing IMO.

    The Reset option is even closer to a fresh installation, since it removes all programs. That may be more than some people want to do, but is a good feature IMO.

    I must say I've had problems with Refresh with a clone that went bad on a Samsung SSD. It would not work for some reason. That I think was the Samsung cloning software not working well, but impossible to truly know.

    I have a 512GB Crucial MX100, which is a great SSD, although I've never used it as an OS drive.

    I freely admit being prejudiced against moving an OS installation between different platforms, mainly because people do it with hugely different systems, and then wonder why things don't work right.

    UPDATE: Started the PC today with the SB DMI Link ASPM Control option enabled, a cold boot, and the PC hung at the ASRock splash screen. Got into the UEFI, disabled that option, and the PC booted fine. So far it seems as if this option fails on a cold start.

    I'll experiment with it some more, but it would be nice if we could get a description of the purpose of the option from ASRock.
    Last edited by parsec; 10-18-2014 at 10:27 AM.

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    Ken429 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    parsec,

    I updated to BIOS 1.40 (it rained all day Saturday!). It was uneventful. The system seems to run as it should but then I thought that with 1.33. The big difference I noticed so far is I don't have any entries in the Custom Views>Administrative Events Log. I have booted several times and have let it run for several hours in and out of Sleep State and the log remains clean! This is a first for any of the W8 systems I've played with. Maybe 1.40 turned off Administrative Events logging(?) or ASR got it right and W8.1.1 is happy.

    I did not try enabling SB DMI Link ASPM Control based on your experience. If you figure out why I would want to change the default on this option please let me know.
    Last edited by Ken429; 10-19-2014 at 07:23 PM.

  8. #8
    parsec's Avatar
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    I doubt a BIOS update could turn off any Event log, and if it did you could turn it on again. Or another Windows log would be screaming bloody murder that the Administrative Events Log was turned off, possibly. I don't recall anyone complaining about errors in that log. I'm not using my Z97 EX 6 PC now, so I'll check it later. Frankly, if this BIOS update did do that, it would be a scandal, don't you think?

    I'm not seeing anything useful about ASPM option, but it's not a simple thing to check, so I'd leave it disabled. Or experiment and tell me what you see.

  9. #9
    Ken429 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    I was only joking about 1.40 turning off the Administrative Event Logging. All is well, Comcast had a short outage today and the system spit out several warnings and a couple of errors in the Administrative event log.

  10. #10
    parsec's Avatar
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    Default Re: Z97 Extreme6 BIOS update to 1.40?

    OMG!! Don't do that to me dude!!

    The dayum Windows logs contain mostly nonsense, at least for the single PC user. It's almost at the point where it logs things like:

    Information: You moved the mouse pointer too quickly to see, and impacted the side of the display.

    Information: Screen Saver was started at 04:32:17PM GMT 10/19/2014.

    Warning: The number of times the Apply button was clicked tends to indicate frustration with the specified application.

    Information: Your Internet provider sux.

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