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Thread: Which EP45 Board?




  1. #1
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    Default Which EP45 Board?

    I built a system around the GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 motherboard. I was pretty happy with it, but for the dual channel memory problem. I have heard there is a BIOS fix for this problem, but I cannot confirm that, thanks to the next problem.

    The power failed the other night while the machine was on, and now the machine no longer connects to the internets; it does not even recognize that a cable is connected anymore. So, I need to replace the motherboard, and this does not seem like the sort of thing that should be covered by warranty.

    I went looking for the GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 and, while it is still available from some sources, I have the strong impression that this particular model is near the end of its product life.

    I also found the GIGABYTE GA-EP45T-USB3P LGA 775, which appears to be a tiny bit more expensive.

    Which of these two boards should I buy? What is the difference between the two? Note, I use one video card, and do not RAID. I do OC. I also have an SSD, and obsess about boot times. Does one board get out of the BIOS posting process faster than the other?

    Thanks!
    Phil
    MOBO - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P v1.6, FB Bios
    RAM - G.SKILL(2 x 2GB) DDR2 1066 (F2-8500CL5D)
    CPU - Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz (currently at 450 x 9 w/ ~31C Idle and 60C @ Full Load) - Zalman 9700 cooler
    GPU - GIGABYTE GV-R485OC-1GH Radeon HD (no OC) Zalman VF2000 cooler (27C idle)
    HDs - OCZ 60G SSD boot drive - WD Caviar Black - WDC WD1001FALS-00J7B1 - 1 TB; Maxtor 6L200S0 (200G) (Both SATA)
    DVD-ROMs - Plextor PX-880SA - (SATA Burners)(2)
    Sound - Omega HT Claro via Monsoon Speakers
    PSU - CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W
    CASE - Antec 300 (Scythe Fans)
    Windows 7 64bit - Home Premium

  2. #2
    Chike is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    "T" models are DDR3 boards, that means you would have to buy new memory as well.
    Have you tried clearing CMOS a long vernight clear?
    Wouldn't a GB ethernet card be a more reasonable solution if everyhing else still working?

  3. #3
    profJim's Avatar
    profJim is online now Chief Munchkin + moderator
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    Have you tried connecting with a different LAN cable?
    Have you tried connecting with the other RJ45-Lan port?
    Is your modem/router still functioning properly?
    Does the windows Device Manager show one or both Lan ports?
    Have you verified that there are no errors or missing files on your hard drives?
    Is the operating system drive/partition OK?

    What specific "dual channel memory problems" are you referring to?
    Download the GB user manual for the EP45T-USB3P motherboard and check out the features in the Product Specifications in chapter 1.

    As Chike said, you might be able to fix your board by clearing your CMOS, where you remove the m/b battery and jumper the two CLR_CMOS pins. This might require an extended overnight clear.
    Check out the BIOS Flashing - A "How To ~ Qflash Guide" guide, in the second post that deals with clearing your CMOS.
    Q9650 @ 4.10GHz [9x456MHz]
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    Whoops! I completely missed the DDR3 part. Glad I chose the right place to ask the question.

    I am away from home for several days, but will try the CMOS clear when I get back, although I am not sure I understand how it can cure a LAN problem.

    To answer some of the other questions - the cable and router are just fine. If I move the cable from the Gigabyte to a laptop, the internet connection is as good as ever.

    I hav tried both LANs, and both give me error code 10 and say that an unspecified problem has caused the Realtek device (I do not recall the exact terminology) has failed to start.

    Both ports show up in Device Manager, both with big red X's.

    I believe that the OS and HD are just fine. I have not tried to do much with them, but they acted normally when I started them up, and they did not give me any error messages other than those surrounding the LAN.

    I have had one problem, but I kind of suspect it is of my own making. When the LANs would not work, I removed and reinstalled them. I downloaded the latest drivers in order to do so. Now, when I start the computer, I get the message that my installation of Windows 7 is not genuine, and urging me to log on and authenticate it. I cannot log on, and as a result Windows seems to be slowly taking away functions. Aero is gone, and my desktop wallpaper is now simply a black background. All of this happened AFTER I removed and reinstalled the LANs with the new drivers. All was fine before that, so I assume that is the cause of the problem and that I do not have more basic problems than that.

    I will deal with the dual channel issues in another post in a few minutes.
    MOBO - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P v1.6, FB Bios
    RAM - G.SKILL(2 x 2GB) DDR2 1066 (F2-8500CL5D)
    CPU - Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz (currently at 450 x 9 w/ ~31C Idle and 60C @ Full Load) - Zalman 9700 cooler
    GPU - GIGABYTE GV-R485OC-1GH Radeon HD (no OC) Zalman VF2000 cooler (27C idle)
    HDs - OCZ 60G SSD boot drive - WD Caviar Black - WDC WD1001FALS-00J7B1 - 1 TB; Maxtor 6L200S0 (200G) (Both SATA)
    DVD-ROMs - Plextor PX-880SA - (SATA Burners)(2)
    Sound - Omega HT Claro via Monsoon Speakers
    PSU - CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W
    CASE - Antec 300 (Scythe Fans)
    Windows 7 64bit - Home Premium

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    OK, here is the dual memory issue. I believe I have posted on this here before, and I am moderately confident I am right about this.

    Not long after I built the box, I began getting some crashes and other problems that led me to believe I had a memory problem. I ran Memtest and got errors, so I started to experiment. I found that either stick worked just fine the first yellow or orange slot. Either stick worked fine in the second yellow slot. Both sticks worked fine in dual channel if they were in both yellow slots. Whenever I put a stick in the second orange slot, I got errors up the wazoo.

    I decided against RMAing the board because it seemed like too much trouble, would take too much time, and was not necessary, considering that I was able to work just fine in dual mode in the yellow slots.

    Somewhere along the way, I acquired an SSD drive and upgraded from XP to Win7, which meant I lost a fair amount of testing software in the process. Well, I guess I still have it, as I can still dual boot into XP, but I don't really use it anymolre.

    Some months later, the system started to freeze randomly, so I tried some more memtesting and found that the massive errors continued in the second orange slot. Worse, I was now getting errors in the second yellow slot as well. My memory is unclear about all of this, but I think I tried updating the BIOS at that time as well. Nothing made the second bank work, so I used the first yellow and orange banks in single channel mode instead. I did not notice any performance drop, but neither did I try any performance testing. The machine "felt" OK, so I left it at that.

    Any thoughts on just what I should do next?
    MOBO - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P v1.6, FB Bios
    RAM - G.SKILL(2 x 2GB) DDR2 1066 (F2-8500CL5D)
    CPU - Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz (currently at 450 x 9 w/ ~31C Idle and 60C @ Full Load) - Zalman 9700 cooler
    GPU - GIGABYTE GV-R485OC-1GH Radeon HD (no OC) Zalman VF2000 cooler (27C idle)
    HDs - OCZ 60G SSD boot drive - WD Caviar Black - WDC WD1001FALS-00J7B1 - 1 TB; Maxtor 6L200S0 (200G) (Both SATA)
    DVD-ROMs - Plextor PX-880SA - (SATA Burners)(2)
    Sound - Omega HT Claro via Monsoon Speakers
    PSU - CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W
    CASE - Antec 300 (Scythe Fans)
    Windows 7 64bit - Home Premium

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    I'm certainly not the expert that most of the people on this forum are, but if I were in your position, with your problems this is what I would do. Obviously, you don't have to agree, this is just a suggestion. I've had that same motherboard for almost a year with no problems at all, either with overclocking or running with default. Before I would consider buying a new M/B, I would try the following:

    First thing is to clear CMOS with instructions given above.

    In my case I have several backups made just for situations like this. I would re-image my C: drive with one that was okay before the power outage. If I didn't have any made, I would completely re-install Windows 7, in which case I would salvage what I could prior to the re-install, with a backup so I wouldn't have to start from scratch after the re-installation.

    Ascertain that you actually do have the latest BIOS which is FE. Check your Network Adapters with Device Manager to make sure that they are "Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller" and "Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller #2." If I'm not mistaken those updates just came out in March.

    Maybe I would be going to drastic measures, but I don't like spending $150-200 and then finding out there was nothing wrong in the first place. Also, you may let some of the regulars comment on this, because they may not see it the same that I do.

    Hope you get everything working.
    GA-EP45-UD3P Rev#: 1.6 Bios FD
    Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550@3.40MHz
    Kingston PC2-6400 4@2GB p/n: 99U5429-007.A00LF
    Asus HD4870 DK 512MB
    Samsung SyncMaster 2443BWX 1920 x 1200
    Acer X193W 1440 x 900

  7. #7
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    Clear CMOS and then load optimized defaults will correct your LAN Issues. Then you will see MAC Address for each LAN in the F9 info screen of the BIOS, which when you have the issue you do not likely see MAC Address right?

    For your memory problem, you sure the yellow slots are now not working? Try them again in dual channel, if you have issue please post your full settings you are trying. You may also want to update to BIOS FE if you have not already, this may correct any memory issues and would correct your LAN issue at the same time without a Clear CMOS because you would load optimized on the new BIOS. If you flash, be sure in Qflash you change "Keep DMI Data" to Disabled

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    1. I am in good shape in terms of data backup. I have all I need on a separate HD from my boot drive, and I have that backed up inmajor part to a cloud as well.
    2. I am not so sure (remember, right now I am away from home without access to the suspect machine) about the images I have. None is super new, and I am told that restoring an image to an SSD has its own joys in terms of drive alignment. In the cosmic scheme of things, if I have to do a Sanitary Erase on the SSD, I will get over it.
    3. NobodyUKnow, thanks for reminding me of the names of the controllers. Yes, indeed, they are "Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller" and "Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller #2."
    4. I will check my BIOS. If it is FD, I will make the move to FE. It was FB back when I created my sig. I will update when I know for sure what it is.
    5. I still do not understand why a CMOS clear should help with these controllers, but if it works, I don't care if you tell me its magic. I will try it when I get home.
    6. I did not know there was an F9 screen in BIOS, and so cannot answer that one until I get home.

    As for the dual channel problem, I am more confident that I know what I am talking about. Maybe this will illustrate it better than I did last time:
    A. Both of the sticks are good. I can run Memtest on a single stick (either stick) in either the first yellow or the first orange bank for hours and get no errors whatsoever.
    B. With the first bank empty, a single stick in the second orange bank produces hundreds of Memtest errors in a matter of seconds.
    C. With the first bank empty, a single stick in the second yellow slot takes a few minutes to produce as many as a hundred errors, but that is still a lot of errors.
    D. Dual mode orange produces hundreds of errors instantly, while dual mode yellow takes a few minutes to produce a hundred errors.
    E. Single mode with the first yellow and orange slots together does not produce any errors at all.

    Something is wrong with the second bank. I will try the BIOS fix before i give up on it. Of course, fixing the BIOS without fixing the LAN is not going to get me very far. I confess I had not considered the possibility of simply installing a card to solve the LAN problem, and suppose I should look into that as well. It would certainly be a lot less work than replacing the mobo, and will likely cost less, too.
    Last edited by whovous; 04-02-2010 at 07:32 PM.
    MOBO - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P v1.6, FB Bios
    RAM - G.SKILL(2 x 2GB) DDR2 1066 (F2-8500CL5D)
    CPU - Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz (currently at 450 x 9 w/ ~31C Idle and 60C @ Full Load) - Zalman 9700 cooler
    GPU - GIGABYTE GV-R485OC-1GH Radeon HD (no OC) Zalman VF2000 cooler (27C idle)
    HDs - OCZ 60G SSD boot drive - WD Caviar Black - WDC WD1001FALS-00J7B1 - 1 TB; Maxtor 6L200S0 (200G) (Both SATA)
    DVD-ROMs - Plextor PX-880SA - (SATA Burners)(2)
    Sound - Omega HT Claro via Monsoon Speakers
    PSU - CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W
    CASE - Antec 300 (Scythe Fans)
    Windows 7 64bit - Home Premium

  9. #9
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    On your # 5. Clear CMOS helps delete the DMI pool, then re-create it. This is what stores hardware configurations such as mice, ports enabled, LAN's enabled/disabled, ect so that is how it could help fix the LAN. I have seen this issue more than a few times, and often this will correct it.

    #6 Yes, on the MAIN page of the BIOS press F9 and you will see system info such as BIOS versions, MAC Addresses, System memory, Ect. I suspect when your LAN's are failing there is no MAC address assigned, which the above should correct.

    Thanks for clearing up your memory slot issue for me, I wasn't sure what all, and how, you had tested. Yes, it does sound like you have a faulty secondary set of slots, or a short between them and the NB or scratched traces somewhere - any of that can cause issues Of course they could also just be plain faulty as well.

    Ya, if you don't want to RMA over the memory issue, and do not get the LAN's to work either and have no problems running single channel then you can easily get a PCI Or USB LAN Adapter. Gigabyte makes a $18-20 PCI Adapter (B/G) that works great, or of course you could choose many others for more or less, or get a Wireless-N card or USB Adapter. Either way it could be cheap and you would not have to wait on a RMA.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Which EP45 Board?

    I will try the CMOS clear regardless, but from what you tell me, it sounds like hitting F9 in BIOS is likely to tell me whether or not the clear will work. If there is no MAC address, then the clear should solve the problem, right?

    Thanks for the advice. Free fixes are definitely preferable to a $150 mobo replacement.

    Phil
    MOBO - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P v1.6, FB Bios
    RAM - G.SKILL(2 x 2GB) DDR2 1066 (F2-8500CL5D)
    CPU - Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz (currently at 450 x 9 w/ ~31C Idle and 60C @ Full Load) - Zalman 9700 cooler
    GPU - GIGABYTE GV-R485OC-1GH Radeon HD (no OC) Zalman VF2000 cooler (27C idle)
    HDs - OCZ 60G SSD boot drive - WD Caviar Black - WDC WD1001FALS-00J7B1 - 1 TB; Maxtor 6L200S0 (200G) (Both SATA)
    DVD-ROMs - Plextor PX-880SA - (SATA Burners)(2)
    Sound - Omega HT Claro via Monsoon Speakers
    PSU - CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W
    CASE - Antec 300 (Scythe Fans)
    Windows 7 64bit - Home Premium

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