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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I built a PC about 15 months ago, and I've had stability problems which have got progressively worse over the last few months. I was running Windows 98ME, so I decided to install Windows XP Pro - so far without success.


The first sign of trouble was that when I went into the motherboard's bios to get it to boot from a CD drive (before trying to install XP), the bios would keep crashing after a few seconds (i.e. it just stopped responding to keys).


Does this mean I need a new motherboard?


Relevant system details are:


CUSL2-C motherboard with PIII 1GHz, Bios 1007

ATI All In Wonder Radeon

M Audio Delta Dio 24/96

IBM Deskstar hard drive

Toshiba DVD/CD-RW

Sony CD-RW


Also, what do you have to do to get the motherboard to boot from a CD drive? I've looked at the manual, but the instructions given don't seem to make sense; when you actually go into the menu for boot priority 1 in bios, the only options are (I think) floppy or disable - it doesn't give the CD drive as an option.


After unsuccessfully trying to install XP, I tried installing a different hard drive (I've now gone back to the original hard drive) and now the bios doesn't recognise either my CD drive or DVD drive. Does anyone know how to fix that?


Thanks - Marcus
 

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I'm not at home, but I think I have the same setup. I have the CD drive on the secondary IDE cable, and the CD boot option appears on the third line and works if I disable the the first two lines. I can only get it to boot on the DVD drive, though.


David
 

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Marcus, your CUSL2 certainly shouldn't be locking up in the BIOS, something is wrong. Try removing all the PCI cards and booting it into BIOS with only one DIMM installed (if you have more than one DIMM to test with). If you still get lock-ups in BIOS, try another DIMM. If you're still getting lock-ups at this point, I'd start to think the MB or power supply (or remote chance vid card) may be defective. If it works now, add one thing at a time 'till it starts locking up again.
 

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Let's hope it's just a bad cable, that's easy to fix. Check that first, then maybe check master/slave settings on the HD/DVD/CD.


Good Luck.
 

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I have that board and had that problem too. It was the AGP card not seated all the way. It could very well be the RAM like Ron pointed out.
 

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I found that with that particular board that if my memory was in slots 2 and 3 instead of 1 and 2 that I would have stability problems, might be worth checking out. Otherwise I'd have to agree that something is faulty, either the RAM or the motherboard itself would be the most likely culprits, though it could also be the CPU or a PCI card.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for all the advice, guys.


I tried changing the DIMM to slot 2, and that seems to have cured the problem with BIOS crashing.


But the MB still doesn't recognise my CD and DVD drives - any ideas on how to sort this out?


While I was moving the DIMM, I noticed that the plastic clamp holding the heatsink and fan onto the CPU has broken, so it's only gravity holding the heatsink down (it does seem to be in contact with the CPU though). I don't know how long it's been like this - does that mean my CPU has fried? Could that be what was causing the stability problems?
 

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marcus,


That clamp on the CPU carrier is very fragile... Mine broke on day one! If you're very careful, you may be able to carve a small 'tongue' out of the remaining materials (A dremel would do the trick, alternatively, you could do it with a bent soldering iron tip... not fun, but it worked for me).


Check you CPU temperatures (in the BIOS), as this might be the source of your crashes (thermal protection)...
 

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I also have a CUSL2 and have been noticing some anomalies. I just installed Motherboard Monitor to see if heat buildup is the cause. What is the normal (and safe) operating temperature range for the CPU (in my case, Pentium III 1 GHz) and the mobo? Mine's been running between 30 and 40 degrees C.
 

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Quote:
While I was moving the DIMM, I noticed that the plastic clamp holding the heatsink and fan onto the CPU has broken, so it's only gravity holding the heatsink down (it does seem to be in contact with the CPU though). I don't know how long it's been like this - does that mean my CPU has fried? Could that be what was causing the stability problems?
That's certainly a possibility. I would definitely keep a close eye on temperatures and make sure the CPU isn't getting too hot.
 

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i had problems as well, but mine turned out to be a memory problem.after that, this motherboard has been completely stable and i would recommend it..


brickie
 

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Besides the other advice, I'd try changing all the drives in the BIOS from AUTO to user type, if applicable. Then disable DMA access for these, keeping just PIO mode access, then work from there. I had your sort of problem on 2 very different ASUS mobos.


also try disabling fast boot up and see if the mobo complains about the RAM (probably not), then let us know how it goes...
 
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