Motherboard and CPU Problem...

  Phil930 18:59 06 Feb 2004

The main specs of my computer are:

AMD XP 2400+
Chaintech 7KJD Mobo
1024 Mb PC2100 DDR
Win XP Pro
TWO HD, 1 120Gb Maxtor and 1 60Gb Maxtor at ATA 100
GF4 Ti4600

For the last 6 months i have had an intermitent problem of my computer not booting by not detecting the hard drives when i first turned it on. However this problem has slowly faded away recently, and i think it is because the room the comp is in is warmer now. before the room would be very cold and strangly the comp would not boot on the first 3 or 4 attempts.

However, coming home today and turning the comp on it boots up saying 'Unknown CPU type at 1700+'. the harddrives are booting fine and the 1024Mb ram is detected. i have all the normal beeps on POST however the processor is only being detected as a 1700+ and i have not changed a thing.

i have changed components over time with the comp, mainly processor about a year ago with no problems. the motherboard is approaching 3 years old now. can anyone give me any advice to why i am having the problem with processor detection on boot??

any help is greatly appreciated.

If the motherboard is approaching three years old it may be that the battery is on the way out. Go into your BIOS, and check the voltage the battery is running at.

  Phil930 19:19 06 Feb 2004

i checked the bios and there were only 3 voltage settings i could see, i went through all the available screens.

the voltages should be 12, 5 and 2.5 and all voltages are running at these levels.

also, now the cpu has warmed up to over 40 degrees C and is being detected as the 2400+ now.

does the room temp have any impact on this?

Room Temperature does have a bearing on the problem. A cold battery will give out lower volts than a warm one.Your earlier symptoms are indicative of CMOS problems.The CMOS contains volatile data which would be lost without a small voltage from your Mobo battery.Often a failing battery can be seen by your computer time and date being inacurate - but this is not always the case as when a computer is switched on, a small charge is delivered to the battery which may be enough to keep it going for a few days.
I suggest if you experience any further problems, you change the battery - it is a simple task these days.

  Phil930 22:51 06 Feb 2004

thankyou, i will try and find a new battery for my motherboard.

  DieSse 00:08 07 Feb 2004

The batteries in computers are not a rechargeable type - switching on the system does nothing for them.

Whilst it would be foolish to say "it can't happen" - I fail to see how a battery can change the CMOS settings on one switch on, then correct them again on another, unless it's you that made the corrections. Then extra warmth could just make the battery hold the settings on a subsequent switch-on.

Changing the battery will only cost you a small amount - so no real money wasted, but I suspect the problem may lie elsewhere.

  Phil930 04:23 07 Feb 2004

DieSse, if the problem may lie elsewhere may you help me and make some recommendations as to where this might be.

the ram is very new and purchased from crucial and all problems seem to relate to boot whether it be from harddrives to ram count to processor check. this makes me think its the motherboard.

if this is the case, what do you recommend? i would be looking for an AMD based board again. the question is; is it worth the money to move to the new 64bit processor boards? or should i get the top of the line AMD XP boards which would support up to the 3200+ or the 3400+ if there is such a chip. which mobo is the best one to buy? all the chipsets confuse me, i really don't know who makes the best boards these days.

Of course I may be wrong, but remembering back to my A+ certification days this problem was often brought up. If the CMOS is not getting the correct voltage then it could lead to erratic boot up,or failure to recognise a hard drive at random intervals, just as Phil930 was finding.A failing battery will perform better at higher temperatures; think of the performance of your car battery in an icy winter and a hot summer.
Whilst the battery is not rechargeable, most motherboards have a small capacitor that maintains the charge when you are changing the battery. There are two ways to check the battery.Either in your motherboard if it has this facility - not all boards do.Or after leaving the computer off for 12 to 24 hours, check the battery voltage before switching on; this should be from 3 to 6 volts depending on the motherboard - the manual should tell you.

Personally I would not move to the new 64bit mobos just yet; there is not a great choice and the cpu's are expensive. I recently changed to a MSI K7N2 Delta board which I love.
Supports up to XP 3000 and higher, FSB 400, has on board RAID controller and connections for serial HDD, USB2 and AGP 8x. It also comes with all the cables you will ever need, and costs around £80-£85.

  Phil930 16:06 07 Feb 2004

thanks electron, i will take a look at this board and continue to persevere with the current one i have.

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