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Old 07-03-2008, 09:00 AM   #16
sonichedgehog
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Thanks for your comments there, I've tried the quickboot...

Have a few questions relating to BIOS identification. This is getting into general hardware rather than slackware, should I stop here and start afresh in the appropriate forum?

The slow performance issue is only mentioned in passing in this thread and explicit in a previous one but I really should have made it clear, as you say.

BIOS is 1.5. There is a credible amount of discussion on the web about trouble (under M$) with outdated BIOS. I now have a bootable floppy using FDOEM144 and copied the essential BIOS files ie flash utility & new BIOS to it. I now think this is the most likely area to try.

Running the utility, it gave me "Flash type Intel E82802AB /3.3v(4mB) which I don't recognize from anywhere else. Asked for file name to program- I entered the name of the new BIOS, reply "the program file's part number does not match with your system". I now know that I have to disable cache in BIOS & short across the lock terminals with jumper, adjacent to BIOS on mainboard. However what file name should I have entered? If its the name of my existing bios, that is on the first screen I see as A617801 V1.5MR 060300, but it has to be exactly the right format.

The long reference at the bottom of my initial screen is 63-10B1-001169-00101111-071595-WHITNEY-1WHITNEY-H, I know that's essential for identification although don't know the full significance.

Big big question.... all the BIOS material on the MSI page you referred me to is Award and my screen shows AMI. I am confident I have stated the mainboard name correctly, although it has ver 1.1 stamped on it and that isn't referred to anywhere. Web research indicated some similarity with MS6183 and that has mostly AMI, indeed a v1.7, but a few Award BIOS options. The date on v1.5 there (7jan00) is closer to the date on my screen (3feb00) than was the case for the Award (30nov99) although not identical, but maybe that's too ambiguous to be of any use.

Maybe my mainboard has the wrong bios? Close enough to boot but with resultant bugs. I don't have the experience to guess, maybe either bios will work. With the right "file name to program" I could get the latest Award BIOS 2.1 in there.

Maybe ver1.1 required the AMI bios, in which case I need 1.7.

I'll see what I can get from forums, MSI themselves, etc. Unlike LQ, most of these sources take a while to respond.

Meanwhile I'm very unlikely to try flashing the BIOS until I have a better idea, especially as, AFAICT, I have no removable chip (or if I did, no spare chip) as a backup.

Thanks. As I said, I'm probably well off topic now so don't mind posting afresh.
 
Old 07-03-2008, 11:07 AM   #17
shadowsnipes
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The part name should be on the mainboard somewhere, but it may not be easily visible. It should be obvious which of the two mainboards you have, though. If nothing else you can measure the dimensions because they are different sizes (not to mention they look a lot different). They have different audio chipsets as well.
MS-6183

If your mainboard does indeed have the wrong BIOS, then that could account for your problems. It doesn't sound like you have a lot to lose here. A computer this old is easy to get from a Library's/Universitiy's mass upgrade leftovers.

Last edited by shadowsnipes; 07-03-2008 at 11:12 AM.
 
Old 07-04-2008, 09:33 AM   #18
sonichedgehog
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I've moved this to http://www.linuxquestions.org/questi...5/#post3203987 which is appropriate for it.

I'd like to thank you once again for your help on this, it's made me use the logs to better advantage and I've learned all sorts of things along the way, like mounting and unmounting in live distros. I'll post again here with the conclusion.

Regards -Phil
 
Old 07-09-2008, 07:41 AM   #19
sonichedgehog
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No conclusion yet but
1 Able to reduce boot time to normal by making rc.udev & other files non executable, comments to rc.S & rc.M, so far no damage except no mouse but can probably enable that in rc.modules
but
2 That's not the problem, boot was slow because I think HDD not addressed properly? Not a boot process hanging performance after all. Performance is very slow even after reduced boot.

Knoppix is fine until I try to load it on the HDD either directly or through enlarged swapfile, then it hangs. But HDD reads and writes fine. Probably bios?
 
Old 07-10-2008, 10:10 PM   #20
shadowsnipes
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonichedgehog View Post
No conclusion yet but
1 Able to reduce boot time to normal by making rc.udev & other files non executable, comments to rc.S & rc.M, so far no damage except no mouse but can probably enable that in rc.modules
but
2 That's not the problem, boot was slow because I think HDD not addressed properly? Not a boot process hanging performance after all. Performance is very slow even after reduced boot.

Knoppix is fine until I try to load it on the HDD either directly or through enlarged swapfile, then it hangs. But HDD reads and writes fine. Probably bios?
Check the logs again. Does it hang when booted live after you mount a hard drive partition?
 
Old 07-11-2008, 02:49 AM   #21
sonichedgehog
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I will check the logs but regret I am unsure... booting live has only hung once in (numerous) occasions, and mounting hd partitions, then reading/writing, has been successful. Shall I check the log after a normal Knoppix boot?

I have a theory that the source of the error is a configuration file amended automatically from a previous session; with the result that only the first session (or two) with any new distro is successful. Knoppix or any other live distro is the same as the first boot with a new distro, therefore...
 
  


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