60GB: 09/22/98-i430VX-8663-2A59GG0BC-00

BIOS update, EIDE card, or overlay software? (FAQ Hard disk recognition)
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Jaded
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I am trying to use a Maxtor 60 GB harddrive with my Gigabyte GA-586VX motherboard. The BIOS info follows:

Code: Select all

BIOS ID: 2A59GG0BC
BIOS Date: 09/22/98
BIOS Signon: 09/22/98-i430VX-8663-2A59GG0BC-00
BIOS Type: Award Modular BIOS v4.51PG
Super I/O: UMC 8663B rev 0 found at port 108h
Chipset: Intel Triton 430VX rev 2
OEM Signon: (Rel 1.1) BIOS Upgrade Provided by Unicore Software
With its cylinder limitation jumper set, the drive worked fine and was detected as ~32 GB, 4111 Cyls, 255 Heads, 63 Sectors/Cyl (in LBA mode). This is the same info that's seen by utils such as PartionMagic and Norton Diskedit.

With the cylinder limitation jumper unset, the BIOS hung during auto-detection, as expected for the Award 4.51PG BIOS. I tried applying the "hack" found at this site to my BIOS:
http://www.ryston.cz/petr/bios/award.html

Specifically, I replaced the following bytes:
26 66 83 7d 78 ff 74 1a 26 81 7d 7a f0 0f 77 12
with:
26 81 7d 7a f0 03 72 02 b2 ff 90 90 90 90 90 90

At first the patch seemed to work; the HD was detected as ~60 GB, 7476 Cyls, 255 heads, 63 Sectors/Cyl (LBA mode). However, PartionMagic and DiskEdit reported 29437 Cyls, 16 Heads, 255 Sectors/Cyl. As a result, I was able to create partitions initially, but was unable to subsequently modify them after creation using PartionMagic (due to a too-large cylinder number in the partition table); furthermore, Fdisk would report the drive's size incorrectly. Even stranger, the drive partition table would report my 60 GB drive as a 2 GB drive with some strange CHS parameters that I'd never seen before, although it would auto-detect properly! No matter how many times I auto-detected, the info in the drive table would revert to those weird numbers. These incorrect parameters would only show up when I had one or more partitions on the drive. Once I deleted the partition(s), the drive info went back to normal.

I hope I haven't given you way too much info. I appreciate any help you could give me. Thanks!
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
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First check the top surface of your board to see if it is indeed a GA-586VX and not a GA-586ATV or something. Then we are going to try and find a bios to patch.
edwin/evasive

Do not assume anything

System error, strike any user to continue...
Jaded
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Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Feb 08, 2003 6:27 am

The motherboard is:

GA586VX REV 3.37
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
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Latest GA-586VX official bios is already patched and listed here:
http://wims.rainbow-software.org

Note: the awdflash utility will probably tell you the part numbers do not match, that is because unicore has changed the bios string. Ignore the error and flash ahead.
edwin/evasive

Do not assume anything

System error, strike any user to continue...
Jaded
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Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Feb 08, 2003 6:27 am

Thanks for your help, but that patched BIOS doesn't seem to work properly with my system. After I flashed it, I experienced sluggishness and lock-up issues. Could it have something to do with the super I/O chip?

According to BIOS Agent, my super I/O chip is:
UMC 8663B rev 0 found at port 108h

My BIOS string is:
09/22/98-i430VX-8663-2A59GG0BC-00

The patched BIOS string is:
07/11/97-i430VX-8669-2A59GG0CC-00
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
Posts: 6275
Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 7:11 pm
Location: Netherlands
Contact:

Most likely. Another untested patched version of the 8663-2A59GG0BC is now here:
http://wims.rainbow-software.org/edwin/
edwin/evasive

Do not assume anything

System error, strike any user to continue...
Jaded
New visitors - please read the rules.
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Feb 08, 2003 6:27 am

Thanks for your response. I removed the cylinder limitation jumper and tried your patched BIOS and my 60 GB hard drive, with the existing partitions that were created when the cylinder limitation jumper was set. I realize these are not ideal conditions for testing the BIOS, but I have some data on that drive that I'd like to archive before I format the drive. (I should've waited for a BIOS update before using the drive, I know).

With your patched BIOS, I didn't encounter the weird bug in which the BIOS drive size changed spontaneously, but Partition Magic continued to report a 29437/16/255 CHS geometry, which prevented me from working with my existing partitions (created on the 255 heads, 63 sec/cyl geometry). Earlier, I had run into problems with the BIOS I self-patched and the 29437/16/255 geometry (I was able to create partitions, but not subsequently manipulate them; Part Magic would give me an error msg about cylinder numbers that were too high).

I am now using an Ultra DMA PCI card which allows me to use the full 60 GB capacity with my existing partitions (Partition Magic reports 7476/255/63 CHS).

If I find the time to archive the data, I'll format the drive, test the patched BIOS and get back to you. Thank you again for your response.
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