View Full Version : Another putting a computer together thread
Ok going on previous recomendations by ruccus I'm putting a computer together using the Abit IC7 motherboard. And just trying to double check hardware compatiblity with a grahpic card that I want to reuse for the time being.
Motherboard specs are as follows
Supported CPU:IntelŪ PentiumŪ 4 Socket 478 processors, Hyper-Threading Ready
Chipset:IntelŪ 875P / ICH5 RAID
FSB:800/533MHz 400FSB not Supported
RAM:4x 184pin Dual Channel DDR 400 Max 4GB ECC Support
IDE:2 x Ultra DMA 33/66/100 Connectors up to 4 Devices
SATA: 2x SATA For RAID 0
Slots:1 x AGP PRO, 5 x PCI slots
Ports:2xPS2,1xLPT,1xCOM,2xUSB2.0,1x1394 and Audio **No onboard LAN**
Onboard Audio: 6-Channel AC 97 CODEC on
Onboard IEEE 1394: IEEE 1394a at 100/200/400 Mb/s transfer rate
Now i have a old g4 ti 4200 made by pny. I can't find the specs on it. I don't know if the agp slot is backwards compatible with older cards, i've never heard of agp pro.
Well i'm at it might just clear the rest of my compatiblity issues in case. I know it supports sata harddrives for raid. But will i have a problem putting an Ide harddrive in?
Thanks for the help
AGP Pro is just an AGP port with a bit extra on each end for extra power that is generally used by high end workstation-class graphics cards. Don't remove the AGP Pro tab and it'll be fine (doing a quick google search, here's a page that explains the difference). An AGP card will work in an AGP Pro port, but an AGP Pro card won't work in an AGP port.
You won't have a problem with an IDE hard drive; you'll still have the two IDE channels. The two SATA channels are extra (so if you wanted to you could hook up two SATA drives and up to four IDE devices).
Went shopping for hd's found a sata harddrive, Will i have any problems with it? Can i install just one on the chain and then if I decide to set up a raid buy another and format and reinstall it as raid at a later date?
here's the link to the hd.
That's actually an IDE drive. An IDE drive is also known as UltraATA and PATA (P for Parallel, like the S in SATA is for Serial). Adrian's Rojak Pot has a nice little introduction to SATA here.
The current advantages of an SATA drive are about a 5% performance increase over PATA (though second and third generation SATA drives will be much faster) and much lower voltage usage.
baaah i linked the wrong one now I can't find it
11-11-03, 10:01 AM
I have a dual sata setup and I love it. While I have not tried it myself, my setup utility leads me to think that I would have to reformat my drives if I wished to change the current array and add another drive. However, if one of my drives goes bad I can swap in a new one since I am doing raid 1 (mirroring) vs raid 1 (extended capacity). Always do the mirroring unless you have four drives of the same type then you can do both.
Ok couple more questions,
If I only put one stick of 512 in for now, how much performance would I lose or how much would i gain from running the memory in pair? If its not to big of a hit or gain right now I'd like to run one stick and use the extra money saved to upgrade the cabling in the computer, go to a rounded cable, better fans / heatsinks. Ohh thats another question will the retail fan / heatsink be sufficent or what would you guys suggest for a replacement (cpu is 2.8ghz p4) fited to the mobo described above.
And the last question as I'm not putting this together and walking someone over the phone thats novice at this and her big concern is will the case she picked fit the motherboard I picked out for her to use. I didn't see the size of the mobo above but know its an atx and the case fits atx. So to my knowledge i'll have no problems with it unless i'm overseeing something that you guys will say
link to case
Oh yeah suggestions for nicer cables and the such. I would assume that the nicer the cables the better performance as well? Along with the being able to move air around in case better with rounded and what not Edited by: deuce at: 11/11/03 2:50 pm
Anandtech's Canterwood article has a chart of dual vs. single channel performance in various applications. In games expect between a 5 to 10% performance loss in single channel mode. As for the heatsink, the stock Intel heatsink will be fine, so long as you won't be overclocking past the 3.2Ghz range or so.
The case and motherboard will be fine. For the installation, remind her to notice all the mounting holes in the motherboard, and screw in motherboard risers only in the corresponding backing plate holes (there will be many holes in the case's motherboard backing plate, but only some of them fit the motherboard's formation).
One trick when assembling the computer is to install the processor, heatsink, and memory before you mount the motherboard in the case - reaching into a case to try to clamp down a processor and its heatsink can be a pita, and the same goes for the memory sticks since they're keyed to fit in a certain way, yet always tend to require a decent amount of pressure before they're seated properly.
As for cables, I use an SATA hard drive with a nice red and black SATA cable, and I use a red rounded IDE cable for the DVD and CD Burner, but those are little extras that don't necessarily need to be worried about until later. The motherboard should come with the proper IDE cables and I think the IC7 also comes with at least one SATA cable. One thing to note is that depending on the size of the case she may have to make sure the IDE cable has enough distance to reach the media drives. In a large case sometimes the media drives are too far away from the motherboard for the standard IDE cable when the drives are mounted in the top drive bays (in which case you'd either have to move the media drives to the bottom of the case or buy longer cables).
Thanks for the help ruccus, never had to walk someone through a complete install before and haven't put together a computer in awhile. Info will defenitly help when it gets fedexed in and we'll have a happy kid with a brand new computer to game with ...faster then mine to bleh.
Ok more dumb questions inc.
The fans on the case we have both have a male and female adapter, Is it possible to daisy chain the fans using the male and female from one end and then hooking one of the psu connectors to a fan?
The next question is the case we have, has front usb / firewire connections (2usb / 1 firewire) we'd like to hook this up but can't seem to find the connection on the motherboard can someone point it out to me and how to hook it up. Thanks
mobo link to newegg
Yup, the reason case fans have both a male and female connection is so they don't use up all of the power supply's connectors.
As for the IC7, the motherboard manual should have the location of the USB connectors - look for a collection of nine pins with a blue plastic backing. Here's a picture of your motherboard, I'm pretty sure the two blue rectangles below the second and third PCI slot are the USB port connectors (the ones on my P4P800 look identical). You have to either read the silkscreening on the motherboard or the motherboard manual to find out which plugs go on which pins (if it's like my case, the front USB connectors consist of eight single pin connectors - each connector has to be put on the proper USB pin).
Ok latest update:
Booted computer up. First boot was fine it posted. Checked bios settings cpu at 107 F. Seemed ok, had her exit out and put in hd setup cd. Setup hd with 1 partition ntfs for windows xp.
Rebooted computer again. Get error message CPU is unworkable or has been changed go into softbios and confirm settings. hit f11 into menu or escape to continue.
Check the settings nothing changed for cpu settings. Exit out. Boot from xp cd. Get this message
NTLDR is missing. Press control alt delete to restart?
What message is this? I think we got the cpu message stoped by changing the boot order the first boot was a floppy disk 2 hard drive 3 cd. Changed prioritys to cdrom > hd > floppy and haven't got the cpu warning yet. But still get NTLDR is missing message and can't continue from there.
Any help to remedy this?
Insert your WinXP CD, go through setup and choose the "repair" option. Here's the related Microsoft Technet page.
It wasn't allowing the boot from the cd. we managed to fix it by changing the file system to a fat32. Just completed windows instalation and will be doing driver updates / win updates tommorow, as well as cleaning up the cables inside the box.
Christmas is going to be very to one certain kid this year. Thanks for your help ruccus I owe ya a beer or (insert favorite beverage) if you ever are in the s.f. bay area
11-20-03, 05:57 PM
Bah more questions
Ok windows installed well and everything so we were in the proccess of updating drivers. Wanted to install the chipset drivers that came with the mobo, says to install them after installing windows.
So load the cd and install the chipset drivers. Prompts for restart, click yes. Computer reboots and it fails to boot windows. Reboot it again and can get into windows in safe mode.
From there we can roll the driver back and windows will load properly. Tried dling the drivers from the motherboards website and end up with the same problem. Anything we can do the aliviate the problem?
What motherboard are you using and are you sure you're trying to install the correct motherboard drivers?
11-20-03, 09:23 PM
Ooops forgot to put my sig that would identify me as deuce. Anyway the board is the one thats discussed up above. The motherboard drivers are off the cd. Then we tried by dling them off there website located here
The Intel INF Update v5.00.1015 drivers.
It says to install those first then the usb drivers / sound drivers.
I'm using the 5.00.1012 version and have no issues, so you could try those. Also Intel has version 18.104.22.1683 on their website; just remember to download the .exe version, not the zip file.
11-20-03, 09:56 PM
Could it be a issue with the bios version? I'm still using the bios that came with the motherboard? Would updating it aleviate the problem?
Possibly - the motherboard CD should have a utility enabling you to flash straight from Windows, so it's not hard to do.
Ok took some time off and left it in the basement waiting for christmas to come around and now its almost here we're taking a look at it again. Decided to run 3dmark and compare testing scores we got a 3715. Which seems low since someone with the same card and a lower cpu ran close to that score.
When she was reciting the specs it caught I ran across something I found odd. Heres the general info 3dmark gave me
Operating System        Microsoft Windows XP
DirectX Version        9.0b
Mobo Manufacturer        www.abit.com.tw/
Mobo Model        IC7/IC7-G(Intel i875P-ICH5)
AGP Rates (Current/Available)        0x / 4x, 8x
CPU        Intel Pentium 4 2807 MHz
FSB        200 MHz
Memory        512 MB
should that be showing an 800fsb? And if so what setting is wrong and how do i go about fixing it?
I smiled when I read that because Aidden's always having to 'correct' me when I say 100, 133, and 200mhz front side bus with regards to Intel. It's a marketing tool because 800 sounds more impressive than 200.
The Pentium4 quad-pumps, meaning it sends four pieces of information per cycle. That means although it's operating at 200mhz, it has the theoretical maximum output of a single pumping processor operating with an 800mhz fsb, so that's what they advertise. I shouldn't blame Intel though - AMD started it by labeling their Athlon processors 200 and 266mhz fsb even though they were double-pumping on 100 and 133mhz fsb respectively.
With regards to scoring of 3DMark, do you mean 3DMark03 or 01? 3DMark03 is highly GPU dependant - with a 1600mhz prosessor speed I score around 3500, but if I bump it up to over 2.13Ghz I'm still only scoring around 3700. The same processor increase in 3DMark01 would net me over 2,000 extra marks (from just 9,200 at 1.6Ghz to 11,400 at 2.13Ghz).
Also, what graphics card are you using? 3715 is too high in 03 and too low in 01 if you've still got the Ti4200 in there.
Doh forgot to mention switch of graphics cards. The 4200 we had in there died a few weeks ago and our new 9600xt arrived and thats what we were testing it with. It was 3dmark03 all the rest of the specs inregards to whats listed above are the same.
Am I in the ballpark for testing? or am I missing a driver? Right now the 9600xt is running on drivers dated 10/28/03 I don't have the version off hand. Nothing overclocked as well.
You're where you should be, but 3DMark01 is a better system benchmark (as I mentioned above, 3DMark03 is highly GPU dependant).
Late October probably means the Cat 3.7, which are fine. If you want to raise your score a bit more, go into the Direct3D tab and move the Texture Preference and Mipmap detail level sliders all the way to the left (though move them back to play games - it doesn't make the visual quality bad, but it blurs things up a bit).
She also said her cpu score is 210 and said when looking it up it was quite low compared to others (3dmark03) We still haven't been able to install the updated chipset drivers it kept locking the computer up.
Would that be the reason for the low cpu score?
Not sure if that's causing the low processor score, but have you tried flashing the BIOS to Abit's newest?
I'm trying to remember something that may be related to your problem - I seem to recall an issue I had where I installed a driver and it seemed like my computer froze (black screen - didn't boot into windows), so I reset the computer only to find some windows files corrupted (hinting to me that while I thought it was frozen, it may have just been in the middle of installing the drivers). If I remember correctly I re-installed the same driver and as it was booting I went to the bathroom for a while, and when I came out Windows was booted up and everything was fine.
I think it may have been the motherboard drivers, so if the problem you had appears to be a boot-up that stays at a black screen, get her to try to install the drivers and at boot up just leave it for five minutes or so - it may be something to do with the northbridge that prevents the graphics card from displaying video while the drivers are being installed. It didn't dawn on me until now because after the problem I didn't wait around to see how long it took to boot into windows the first time after the drivers were installed (I was reading in the bathroom).
Ok lil more info again,
Bios is updated to the latest that abit has listed. When installing the chipset drivers it installs correctly but when it asks for reboot it starts to reboot and during the initial loading that it'll reboot itself on its own and then says windows failed to load choose safe mode/normal/last known cgood config
Choose normal it'll do the reboot thing again. So go into safe mode and unintall the driver or choose last known config to get it to boot correctly
What are your BIOS settings like? Do you have everything set to "Auto Detect", or did you manually set up the system for performance? Maybe a setting that isn't stressed until the chipset drivers are installed is screwing something up. If you have the ras to cas latency set to 2, increase it to 3 and see if that helps (the 865 and 875 won't run a ras to cas of 2 with some memory types).
I'm wondering if it may also have something to do with having one stick of memory - maybe when the chipset drivers are first installed it assumes dual channel operation. If you can get a hold of a pair of dimms or another dimm of the same size and number of banks, try installing the chipset drivers while running in dual channel mode, then switch to single channel after it's installed.
I'm just taking educated guesses now though - you could also send Abit an e-mail to see if they know about and can solve the issue.