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Slot A Athlon600 to t-bird900.....and the problems begin!

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Mar 11, 2002
Watford, South East england
first off hi all i'm hoping you guys can give me alittle advice!

I know a bit about computers (took a couple apart and rebuilt) and i have been upgraging my system slowely for a while now. I have successfully added a plex 24/10/40 and upgraded to a geforce 2 graphics card with no probs.

.......but i have just managed to source a cpu upgrade to a t-bird 900 from an athlon 600 (not easy to do when you're limited to slotA) but i have run into a couple of probs.

My old system ran overclocked at a nippy 636 MHz with no probs what so ever with loaded cpu temps of around 42 C. but since i have up graded to the t-bird windows 98 has a habit of locking up on me quite often. To get stability i am having to run the bird @ 855MHz and even now resting temps are fluctuating between 43-46 C not what i like to see.

Would I be correct in saying that the heat sink and fan from the older (plastic covered chip) is not powerful enough to cool the t-brid (metal over)?

I have a new fan coming but i am alittle worried about my PSU and wether it will be up to the strain.

thanks for reading this
I would say to get a new heatsink and fan, cause 50c is too hott. the psu looks good enough to handle a new high speed fan, i would reccomend the swifttech mcx462-a, for now i would use cpuidle to cool ure idle temps a bit probally would hep about 10c
some case cooling wouldnt be a bad idea, and also are u using a slocket?
Does your mobo realy support the Slot A T-Bird?
As most boards don't...
If you need a good HS I would strongly recommend the Global Win VOS 32. It's probably the HS available vor Slot A and Slot 1.
It's a huge chunk of Metal, but it works very well I can tell you.
Check out the temps in my sig. That was a 650 Slot A running at 2.05 vcore and 954 Mhz with a lapped VOS 32.
someone should correct me if i'm wrong... the only chipset that officially supported the slot-a tbird was the amd 761, wasn't it nicknamed irongate? anyway, if that chip is working in a board with any other chipset your very lucky.

the two chips are the same same except for the tbirds onboard cash. they both had a metal backplate it's just painted black on the original athlons....

seems it was a crapshoot to see if the t-bird would work in a board with a different chipset, sometimes yes, sometimes no.

please list your mobo manufacturer and model # so we can help you some more, your temps aren't too bad but if you have a 750 or higher you need a h/s with dual fans....

i would look for a 750 classic if i were you. i had my 750 classic stable at 1000!!!!!
Yeah, I think you are right. The Via KX 133 never supported the T-Bird. At least my KA7 doesn't, and if it doesn't support it, I doubt, any other KX133 Board will. The only Board which officially supported the T-Bird was the ASUS K7V if I'm not completely mistaken.
Check out this article. It's a little out-dated, but I think the info is still correct.

But if you own a current Athlon machine, Socket A is unlikely to turn your crank, because you can't use Socket A processors at all without getting a "slotket" adaptor board.

Which you can't, because nobody makes them yet.

And they may never work properly, at least for faster Thunderbirds.

This is because VIA Technologies' popular KX133 Athlon motherboard chipset doesn't work properly with faster-than-800MHz Thunderbird CPUs. Well, it's not supposed to, anyway.

AMD's own 750 chipset apparently works fine, but a lot of better Athlon boards use the KX133, and as a result AMD isn't making any retail Slot A Thunderbirds. Just Socket A ones. Making sure anyone that bought a new Athlon could actually use it was more of a problem than they cared to deal with.

So, if you have a KX133 board, your lucky it's running at all ... And this might be the reason you had to "underclock" your CPU to run properly on a KX133 board. And the Asus K7V runs on a KX133 chipset, so it may be a different model than the K7V that supports the higher Slot A T-birds ... I couldn't find anything on the ASUS site about it. I will keep looking though.

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cheers for the feed back

my mobo is a MSI k7 Pro (MS 6195)
the manuel says that it has the following:

AMD-751 system controller (irongate?) and AMD-756 peripheral controller (Viper)

front side bus 100MHz clock is supported(200MHz Internal System Bus)

supports 3.3v pc100 sdram dimm (but i read that it will take pc133 on a popular memeory manufacturor's site)

My Bios is not up to date as i am a bit weary of flashing causing a system melt down.
I'm sorry I didn't see this post sooner, I coult have told you in the blink of an I. My friend just happened to have that Exact same experience, I'm shure any board with a AMD/VIA chipset combo will not support it. but I'm NOT positive if your board should have that problem. I strongly recomend that you attempt to update you'r BIOS, most likely you wont ruin your. and with any luck you'r problem may go away. The board my friend got is the Gigabyte GA-7IXE and as an extra bonus it gives you dip-switches for the FSB. That's the only Slot-A Mobo I'v seen with one. And it only costs (I thik) USD $60 at Tiger direct, I don't know at new egg.
1 problem fixed opens another

i may have wasted your time folks.....i'm really sorry but i have fixed the prob. I started thinking what i had been upto on the day my probs began and then i remember that i had tried to set my AGP rate to x2 (which is supported by the mobo and GeForce card) using NVMAX and that was when i hit my probs.

i have since reversed changes and viola no more freeze at 900MHz

...........BUT now i have a new problem.!! Why wont my system run @900MHz and x2 AGP when it will run @859MHz and x2?

could it be to do with the FSB speed (95 gives 859)
(100 gives 900)

I know these changes will affect the agp bus but i struggle to understand exactly how.
I'm fairly certain that only the amd 761 supported the slot-a t-bird. i had a biostar with the 751 and it didn't support it, there were a couple manufactures who made amd 761 boards. i'll do some looking, it may be worth a new mobo if you can get for >50?
you shouldn't be having a problem with agp 2x or even 4x....
according to his manual he has the following

l AMD® Irongate chipset. (Northbridge)
- 200MHz EV6 System Interface speed
- 100MHz SDRAM
- 1x/2x AGP
- Status - Silicon currently in bring-up
l AMD® 756TM (Viper) chipset. (Southbridge)
- ACPI Power Management"

Also tech support says the following about his cpu support.

"revision: 1 with BIOS version: A6195KMS.178

is currently validated for the following processors:
Note that only the highest speed is shown. If not otherwise indicated, the lower speed processors have already been validated.

AMD Athlon (Thunderbird Slot A) 1000MHz
AMD Athlon (K7 + K75, Slot A) 1000MHz"

Hope this helps.

EDIT ---> By the way, absolutly update your bios. I am sure this would make things a lot easier for you.
cheers Tracert that confirms everything i thought! My mobo does support the t-bird and as i have said all is well as long as i only run agp X1. I have now clocked the little beastie to 945 MHz and everything is fine. I am looking into the bios update but still nervous of the consiquences should it go belly up (do you know how hard it is to find a slotA mobo theses days?). I was lucky to get the T-Bird and even the auction site where i got it don't mention any MB's in this format!
I don't know if it helps, smudged, but I have done more bios updates then I could count over the past 5 years. I have never had one go bad. I even have the K7S5A, which many people have reported issues with but I swap bios like many would swap drivers.

Truth is as long as you make sure you have the right files, there is nothing to fear unless your prone to lose power or unplug your pc. Really, the sooner you start learning to do things like this and lose your fears, the sooner you will be enjoying smoother running PC's.

I would guess an updated bios would help your AGP issues, but maybe not so in the end. You need to do what you feel comfortable doing.

Have fun ;)
flashing just doesn't suit me...i'm shy.

thanks for the reassurance i have been to MSI's to look for the update but i am a little confused by how they word things they say:-

'Know Your model number
a. Open your case and look for the MS-XXXX number on the motherboard between the PCI slots, also check the version number that is written there as well. (some motherboards are named like K7T Turbo, make sure you have the right version number)
b. Boot up your system & take a look at the top left screen during POST, you should see something like "A6380MS v1.7 122101" This means the board is MS-6380 with BIOS version 1.7

Download the BIOS that matches your motherboard AND version number (some motherboards are named like K7T Turbo, make sure you have the right version number). BIOS can be found according to the CPU type of your board like if your CPU is Intel P4 478 type then look here.

my mobo is K7pro and says V1 on the board. On boot up it says bios V1.3. the site offers downloads of versions 1.3, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 and 1.8 which one is for me? thanks
As far as selecting AGP 2X, you should be able to do that in the bios and not have to do it with the NVMAX program. NVMAX might be giving you the instability problem itself when enabling AGP 2X, without the bios having it set. Also, have you upgraded your cooling with a bigger fan yet? You really will need better cooling when overclocking that beast because T-bird procs run really hot.
Re: flashing just doesn't suit me...i'm shy.

smudged said:

my mobo is K7pro and says V1 on the board. On boot up it says bios V1.3. the site offers downloads of versions 1.3, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 and 1.8 which one is for me? thanks

Each one of those bios downloads you have listed are new revisions of your bios. Your lucky that you alreaady had V1.3 bios loaded on your machine. That was the revision where they allowed support for Tbirds up to 1 Ghz.

Normally what I would do is go right to the newest one, which for you is 1.8 and download / install that one. According to the summaries of the revisions, I don't see where any AGP issues are addressed. However, that dosen't mean that they didn't fixed some small stability / timing issue with their AGP and decided not to put it in the summary and there are quite a bit of issues that were fixed in between revision 1.3 and 1.8 which would be enough for me to go ahead and update the bios.

Also for further clearifaction. Any fixes that were done in previous releases will also be included in the newer releases along with the new fixes. So if you were worried that you needed to pick the one that has the right fix, just take the latest one and that will include all the fixes.

Apparently they even have a bios recovery program so even if something happened, you can still recover from a bad flash. I highly doubt you will have any issues with this tho.

They also have some good directions on their bios page so I believe that you should have everything you need to complete this task. I do not want to force you into anything you do not want to do, so don't think you have to flash you bios for my benefit. But I do think your more then intelligent enough to pull this off and once you do, you will be able to move ahead by leaps and bounds.

Good luck and keep us informed on what ever you decide.
Hehe. not to make light of you current temps and problems, but my socketA 1.4Ghz t-bird used to idle at 49 and work at 55 (no problems), with the case open (would idle at 55 with it closed). even tho alot of people will tell you it is dangerous to run it so hot, i've come to the conclusion that AMD built the thunder birds to run hotter then normal...possibly as an experiment for their later cpus, who knows. but now, with a proper hsf on it, it idles at 45 and works at 52 without any issues either (not that big of a difference in temps oddly). well, best of luck. definatly invest in a better hsf (HeatSink/Fan) as well as some case fans. but IMO, you should have used the money you spent on the burner and put it towards an XP chip.

yeah with hindsight i probably would have put the £200 i spent on the then brand new plex toward an XP processor, but being limited to slot A chips this would have been a very costly way forward ( i priced the mobo, chip, case, and new RAM @ around £450). So i thought what the hell i'll get the best burner i can for the money and in my opinion that was definatly the plex. Oh well never mind. I'll just have to try to save more, which is not easy when I've also got a mk2 golf gti, which like my PC, i just want to go FASTER!!!!

as for the agp setting in the bios, i have been through everything about six times and get no indication of a manuel setting. I can only assume that it is in some obscure tech-lingo that has missed my attention. I know all NXMAX did was alter settings in my regestry in the nvidia software key. I found the advice on how to do this in the forums at the msi site.

thanks for your input guys,it's most appreciated i'll let you know how the flashing goes (i got a long brown over coat that should suit the job fine!)