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Thread: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?




  1. #1
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    Smile A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Hi,

    I've been looking around here in these forums, and I see there is good advice for various mobo BIOS settings. I haven't found my own GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1 listed, and I don't want to just assume I can use a different one.

    After a mobo scare and replacement before I even loaded on my OS, I am running in Scared Mode myself, so I intend to
    — set up my BIOS in a basic, SAFE, pretty minimal config
    — then put on Windows XP 64
    — get Windows nicely set up (I'm good at that; partitions, settings, software)
    — after a week or so, return to the BIOS and modify it more thoroughly

    Everything I'm saying here is open to suggestion. Some of my following assumptions might be wrong.

    However, what I would LIKE to do (my own preference) is to get the system going with its full RAM and its full drive arrays. I know some people would advise "just one stick of RAM" or "just minimal drives" but previous tests have made me confident in my drives and RAM, which comprise:

    — SATA: 2 HDDs
    — SATA: 1 DVD/RW
    — PATA: 1 CD/RW (Cable Select setting, position = Master)
    — PATA: 1 HDD (Cable Select setting, position = Slave)
    — Floppy: 1
    total: 6 drives

    — RAM: 8 GB = 4 sticks of G.Skill F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 DDR2-1000 CL5-5-5-15 Dual; previous the BIOS showed this as CMOS base memory 640K, extended memory 7934M, which I believe to be correct.

    This was a good sign, because the system is something of a hybrid. Its CPU is an Athlon 64x2 5600+, the mobo is an AM2+ (which supports that CPU but also supports Phenoms), and the RAM—which is actually more advanced than this CPU will be able to fully take advantage of—is overclockable (probably) to 1066. So I think I have some more sophisticated BIOS work ahead of me, but I think the computer will be okay for right now.

    I don't have a discrete video card (yet). I want to see how well the 780G chipset's well-rated integrated Radeon HD3200 graphics unit works first. (No gaming; lots of multitasking; lots of looking at quite a few thousand .JPGs.)

    For the time being, no passwords are needed. No kids; secure location; no business applications.

    I do like the idea of setting up some profiles. (Such as Safe, Best Now, and Work in Progress.)

    Later I'll be looking for much more detailed info for a much more refined BIOS. But what is recommended to let me get XP 64 on?

    Oh. And one very easy question: I hate holding in the Power Button for 4 seconds. When I'm working on things, I prefer to use the rear On/Off button at the back of the PSU. There is nothing wrong with doing things this way until I have an OS on, is there?

    Thanks for any ideas.
    AMD Athlon 64 x2 5600+
    Gigabyte AM2+ GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1. BIOS (newest) F11
    NB: AMD780G. SB: AMD SB700
    RAM 8GB (2 kits @ 4GB each) G.Skill DDR2-1000 (F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 x2 CL5-5-5-15) running as DDR2-800
    Case Antec P150
    PSU Corsair HX520W. (PSU calc by Corsair + NCIX; tested by TT Dr Power.)
    Cooling Xigmatek HDT-S1283 heatsink (Arctic Silver 5); 6 fans
    HDDs usable 1.7 TB (4 Seagates—3x 500GB SATA ST3500320AS w/SD1A + 1x 320GB PATA ST3320620A)
    Floppy
    Opticals (3): Pioneer SATA DVR-212D; LiteOn/Sony PATA CRX230AE; external USB Samsung SE-S204S DVD Writer
    Video ATI Radeon HD4670
    Monitor 22" LG W2242TQ w/Belkin DVI-D
    Sound Altec Lansing 5.1
    Mouses (2) Logi MX620 + Logi V220
    KB Simple Perfection backlit USB
    XP64
    No gaming; heavy simultaneous use of big programs
    System built Nov 2008




  2. #2
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Well, I dont know much about AMD at all, but I would say for 8Gb you need to add some memory controller voltage and set refresh to act delay (tRFC or ? Not sure in AMD) to 195ns or 327NS, you will know which it is as it is likely set to 127ns now.

    As for your power button question, first off it is Very important that you use the windows Power off button in the system to shut down. Shutting down with your PSU Switch or Case power button shuts the system of while it is in the middle of doing things and will corrupt your data for sure eventually. Ohh sorry, I reply AS I read! Ya, you can do that with no system... Silly me

    Or you can change a BIOS setting (Suggested as flipping your PSU Switch often is likely not too god for it?) The BIOS setting would be in the Power Management page, set this >>>

    Sort-Off By PWR-BTTN .... Instant-Off

    Ya, profiles are nice, for sure take advantage of that!

    If you need some specific help, like I said I do not know AMD Very well but Post your issue and I will try to help

  3. #3
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Well, today I installed XP 64 on my system, and I had it there for half an hour or maybe longer. So I'm doing okay.

    I have my own system for setting up Windows. I use a lot of partitions, most of which I create in XP's Disk Management. For a few years now I've built systems (usually multi-boot systems) on discrete partitions for (C:) System (meaning just the boot files and MBR data), (D:) Boot (meaning the OS), and (E:) Programs. You can actually extend those three into quite a few more, although I usually keep my programs to just one partition.

    So it doesn't matter too much to me if I want to redo a Windows OS. In a multiboot box, I simply go to a different Windows and reformat the unwanted Windows partition. I do pretty thorough formats. Afterwards, when the replacement OS is on, the program files are all still ready and waiting. I could retain the registry with NTRegOpt and ERUNT, but although I use them all the time, I just rebuild things the slow way. If there was a problem that merited replacing the OS, I'm pretty fussy about what I import into the new system.

    This XP 64 I've been working with today has been pretty growly and stubborn about things, almost as growly and stubborn as I am. Everything worked, but I had an issue about a file that seemed to be keeping the system from getting onto the internet, and that was the beginning of the end of that Windows.

    I have a feeling my lightweight, superficial BIOS tweaking was making my OS unstable.

    Well, if I get things going tomorrow, November 30th, that's not too bad. I started this project about March 30th: a mere 8 months ago.
    AMD Athlon 64 x2 5600+
    Gigabyte AM2+ GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1. BIOS (newest) F11
    NB: AMD780G. SB: AMD SB700
    RAM 8GB (2 kits @ 4GB each) G.Skill DDR2-1000 (F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 x2 CL5-5-5-15) running as DDR2-800
    Case Antec P150
    PSU Corsair HX520W. (PSU calc by Corsair + NCIX; tested by TT Dr Power.)
    Cooling Xigmatek HDT-S1283 heatsink (Arctic Silver 5); 6 fans
    HDDs usable 1.7 TB (4 Seagates—3x 500GB SATA ST3500320AS w/SD1A + 1x 320GB PATA ST3320620A)
    Floppy
    Opticals (3): Pioneer SATA DVR-212D; LiteOn/Sony PATA CRX230AE; external USB Samsung SE-S204S DVD Writer
    Video ATI Radeon HD4670
    Monitor 22" LG W2242TQ w/Belkin DVI-D
    Sound Altec Lansing 5.1
    Mouses (2) Logi MX620 + Logi V220
    KB Simple Perfection backlit USB
    XP64
    No gaming; heavy simultaneous use of big programs
    System built Nov 2008




  4. #4
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Well you methods sound pretty good, safe way to go about things for sure.

    Ya x64 XP does have some issues still, is MS still releasing new updates for it?

    So how are you getting along now?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    All is well, after a few false starts. The trickiest aspect to building a computer is that you have too many variables initially; too many things that can be wrongly configured (by you) or be wrongly manufactured. I was scared by problems that resulted from my first mobo being faulty—but which I thought resulted from my BIOS tweaks (I was wrong). Since the mobo was accepted for RMA, I have read that there were some pretty obscure possibilities which might have made it OK after all.

    Twice I used RegSeeker, with two successive XP 64 installations. I had used RegSeeker for years with 32-bit XPs and for a year with 32-bit Vista. But RegSeeker can kill 64-bit XP, and again I put blame on my BIOS tweaks, which were really harmless and superficial. I was slow to learn about RegSeeker, but on my third Xp 64 install I purposely took some chances and isolated RegSeeker as being the culprit.

    I do very nice XP/Vista installs, but to do them I focus for long hours and days on the project, as though I have some autism in me. I must learn how to make an image of these configs, because when I lose one, it does represent a ton of work down the drain.

    My XPs are far, far away from default. Zero icons on the screen, and meticulously arranged hierarchies which make the entire system available from about half a dozen icons stored as toolbars on the taskbar. These eclipse the Start Menu Programs, but I have those neat and tidy in hierearchies anyway. None of my 300+ software programs are in Program Files, which I never use—they are all in their separate partition. So, if I lose WINDOWS, I don't lose my apps. Also, I use NTRegOpt and ERUNT. And I back up my AppData in a different partition.

    The only problem I have to watch is myself. I tend to get carried away with making XP super-nice, when I'd be brighter if I worked on the BIOS. I am still reading about AHCI. I should have set it up first—well, I did, but that was when I was condemning myself for wrong BIOS tweaks. I did nothing wrong in the BIOS except to lose my nerve. Anyway, now it has to be AHCI with XP already set up.

    No problem. Right? :)
    AMD Athlon 64 x2 5600+
    Gigabyte AM2+ GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1. BIOS (newest) F11
    NB: AMD780G. SB: AMD SB700
    RAM 8GB (2 kits @ 4GB each) G.Skill DDR2-1000 (F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 x2 CL5-5-5-15) running as DDR2-800
    Case Antec P150
    PSU Corsair HX520W. (PSU calc by Corsair + NCIX; tested by TT Dr Power.)
    Cooling Xigmatek HDT-S1283 heatsink (Arctic Silver 5); 6 fans
    HDDs usable 1.7 TB (4 Seagates—3x 500GB SATA ST3500320AS w/SD1A + 1x 320GB PATA ST3320620A)
    Floppy
    Opticals (3): Pioneer SATA DVR-212D; LiteOn/Sony PATA CRX230AE; external USB Samsung SE-S204S DVD Writer
    Video ATI Radeon HD4670
    Monitor 22" LG W2242TQ w/Belkin DVI-D
    Sound Altec Lansing 5.1
    Mouses (2) Logi MX620 + Logi V220
    KB Simple Perfection backlit USB
    XP64
    No gaming; heavy simultaneous use of big programs
    System built Nov 2008




  6. #6
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Sounds like a lotta work for a OS!!!

    With all that setup you should be making mirrors of the system once configured to you liking that way you can restore that exact image anytime or on another system

    So you want to Go to AHCI Without a reinstall right? Not sure about AMD, but I can look around for some methods for you if you want to try it out

  7. #7
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Thanks, Lsdmeasap. I've started a new thread about AHCI. Not just for myself, but because there are a LOT of folks trying to do the same thing.

    Apparently some of the methods simply fail a lot. That leaves non-tech folk in the lurch. So a lot of people research this thing quite a bit before chancing their OS on a failed bid for AHCI. The question has been raised: "Why is AMD [or Gigabyte] doing this to its patrons?" :)
    AMD Athlon 64 x2 5600+
    Gigabyte AM2+ GA-MA78GM-S2H ver 1.1. BIOS (newest) F11
    NB: AMD780G. SB: AMD SB700
    RAM 8GB (2 kits @ 4GB each) G.Skill DDR2-1000 (F2-8000CL5D-4GBPQ PC2-8000 x2 CL5-5-5-15) running as DDR2-800
    Case Antec P150
    PSU Corsair HX520W. (PSU calc by Corsair + NCIX; tested by TT Dr Power.)
    Cooling Xigmatek HDT-S1283 heatsink (Arctic Silver 5); 6 fans
    HDDs usable 1.7 TB (4 Seagates—3x 500GB SATA ST3500320AS w/SD1A + 1x 320GB PATA ST3320620A)
    Floppy
    Opticals (3): Pioneer SATA DVR-212D; LiteOn/Sony PATA CRX230AE; external USB Samsung SE-S204S DVD Writer
    Video ATI Radeon HD4670
    Monitor 22" LG W2242TQ w/Belkin DVI-D
    Sound Altec Lansing 5.1
    Mouses (2) Logi MX620 + Logi V220
    KB Simple Perfection backlit USB
    XP64
    No gaming; heavy simultaneous use of big programs
    System built Nov 2008




  8. #8
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: A Nice, SAFE, Initial BIOS for GA-MA78GM-S2H ?

    Ya, it is best to just do a clean install to AHCI instead of trying to use a workaround

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