need help in id'ing motherboard--beginner at it

How-to identify your motherboard ?
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Hi: Someone at computing.net recommend me to this site. A friend recently "rebuilt" my computer but didn't tell me what brands he put inside! I am new to understanding the technical aspects of the insides of a computer and I have spent the past week identifying the sound card, video card, and recently identified the BIOS. I would like to identify and know what I have for a motherboard.

From what I could see from reading other posts, listing the BIOS info helps identify the motherboard (true??), so I can tell you from the "Bios Wizard" report I did that I have an American Megatrends
BIOS ID# 51-0506-001437-00101111-071595-M571
BIOS DATE 7/15/95 BIOS ROM SIZE: UNKNOWN
BIOS SIGNON: UNKNOWN
CHIPSET: SiS5597 rev 2
Super I/O Chip: UMC/ITE 8669 found at port 108h

When I opened up the computer, I saw something on the motherboard that said:
AMIBIOS
586c ("c"=copywright sign) 1985-1995

On the motherboard also were a few chips. One said:
Soundpro
HT 1869U+
EIW25
9815 PCI

Another chip said:
UMC
UM867OF
9749-AXA
ZMB720

A third chip said:
UT6164C64AQ-5
2TO1108.167F
9812

A last thing I saw written within some kind of square with two columns (it didn't look like a chip though)--the heading of the first column is JP7 then the heading of the next column
says A B and then there is small writing (#'s???) listed underneath the A and the B.

Pardon my lack of knowledge. I just copied what I saw. I hope this helps someone to help me know what I have in my computer, and also whether I would need to upgrade my BIOS. If it matters, I have a pentium, 233Mgz processor, 80MB ram (I added more to the 64 orig. RAM) and a 3GB highdrive--I'm small beans here!

Thanks in advance for your help.
zonxar
Master Flasher
Posts: 197
Joined: Thu Mar 21, 2002 7:26 pm
Location: Airdrie, Alberta, Canada

The M571 indicates PcChips M571 motherboard. Go to the following link and choose the "...DO KNOW..." link on the right side and then the M5xx link:
http://www.stud.fernuni-hagen.de/q3998142/pcchips/

There are several versions of the M571, M571MR & M571LMR so be sure you correctly identify which one you have and which board version number. The version number will be in the corner near the keyboard connector or possibly the opposite corner (can be under a small round white sticker).
:)
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Dear Friend:

Thank you for helping me to identify the Motherboard as a PC Chips M571.

You wrote: "There are several versions of the M571, M571MR & M571LMR so be sure you correctly identify which one you have and which board version number. The version number will be in the corner near the keyboard connector or possibly the opposite corner (can be under a small round white sticker)."

I am confused...You say to identify WHICH ONE I HAVE AND WHICH BOARD VERSION NUMBER. So, there are TWO things I have yet to identify?--the Board Number and a Board Version Number?...or just the board version number which will be one of 3 numbers--M571, M571MR, or M571LMR??...

Also,I don't know technical stuff, so I don't know what a keyboard connector looks like. What am I looking for...what does it look like? And, what if there isn't a small round white sticker? Don't remember seeing one. Any other ways, just in case, to identify which version I have??

Lastly, when I find that information, do I just put it in that web-site you gave me and that will basically give me the info. I need about whether or not I need to upgrade my bios??

Thank you in advance for your kind help.
zonxar
Master Flasher
Posts: 197
Joined: Thu Mar 21, 2002 7:26 pm
Location: Airdrie, Alberta, Canada

If you go to the following link you will see an image of the M571 board. At the top of the picture near the right corner is the connector where the keyboard plugs into the motherboard (black object, cylindrical shape). There should be a version number to the right of this connector, printed in white lettering that says Vx.x, where the x.x will be some number. When you find that go to the link in the previous message to positively identify which board you have.
You need this information to get the correct manual and BIOS update (if you should ever decide to update the BIOS).

http://www.pcchips.com.tw/M571.html
:)
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Dear Zonxar:

Thank you so much for responding...I look inside and found the black cylindrical piece and there was a white sticker next to it and it said
V3.2A so I would imagine that that means that putting it all together now, that I have a

PC Chips M571 V. 3.2A.

Okay, now that I know that, how do I determine more about the motherboard I have and whether or not it is wise for me to update my BIOS or leave it alone.

I read the link you mentioned but a lot of the language doesn't make sense to me fully. I still don't have a good idea whether to leave things alone or get a bios upgrade from the American Megatrends
51-0506-001437-00101111-071595-M571; BIOS date 7/15/95.

Can you advise a beginner like me and/or point me in the right direction?

Thank you very much in advance for your help on this.
ajzchips
El cheapo dude
Posts: 3048
Joined: Sat Mar 23, 2002 12:41 pm
Location: Madrid, Spain

Now that you've identified your board, check out http://go.to/th2
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Thank you to those of you who have been helping me.

I went to the PC Chips web-site and found my M571 V3.2A motherboard info. I downloaded the zip file for the manual and the jumpers.

I also downloaded the following from the site:

M571 V3.2(A)Bios_19990514S_AMI
M571 V3.2(A)Bios_20020201S_Beta_AMI
M571 V32_2.2V_Hack_TXT

Now, I have some general questions to ask, please:

1-A friend installed the Motherboard and I came here to have knowledge of what I have in my computer. Now I know a bit more. How do I know whether to leave it alone or whether I should upgrade/update my BIOS?

2-Are "flashing the bios" and upgrading the bios the same thing or something different?

3-I am assuming that the downloads above that say BIOS are the BIOS upgrades, correct?? If so, if I do upgrade, how do I know which version to choose?

4-I also saw something for a ROM BIOS download. Is that something completely different or the same thing by a different name?

5-What is the Hack.TXT file above? Any ideas?

Thank you in advance for being patient with my questions. I hope that you can take the time to answer each when you can, so I can better understand the process.
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
Posts: 6273
Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 7:11 pm
Location: Netherlands
Contact:

1. If it works, leave that bios alone
2. Usually yes. Flashing is the most common technique. In the 486 era and before you had to reprogram the bios chip in a special device with a newer version of the bios, you can do that in the system now with a flash utility.
3. Not relevant yet.
4. AMI bios upgrade files end in .rom I suppose it's the same, but can you give us the location of that file?
5. Instructions to modify the hardware on your board to make it suitable for processors that need 2.2V core voltage. Not recommended for beginners.
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Dear Edwin,

Thank you for answering my questions about flashing the bios, upgrading and the files I downloaded. It helped.

You asked me to let you know where the file I was questioning was from. It was from the following site. The file is called 990305s.rom and is located under the M571 heading on the page at:


http://www.pcchips.com.tw/BIOS.html

I look forward to you clarifying what this file is.

So now I know I don't need to upgrade my BIOS because except for minor little things, my computer is working fine. I guess out of curiosity, if you are willing to add, under what circumstances do people need to upgrade their BIOS? I just would like to be further educated.

Thank you in advance!
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Dear Edwin:

I just went to the other forum where i posted the question and got your link to this site and also noticed the topic was locked.

I wondered why and went back and read the Forum rules and it said not to cross post the same question.

I thought maybe when I didn't get a prompt response from the post about upgrading that maybe I had put the question in the wrong area since the topic had changed so I reposted it in the upgrading bios section.

I'm sorry. I didn't know. I did read the rules but I guess that didn't stick in my head. Won't do it again.

Thanks.
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
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No problem there.

Bios upgrades are usually released because of bugs in the current bios, sometimes to improve stability, support for newer and more CPUs, bigger harddrive support and so on.

Unless you have a major problem (unstable, CPU not supported, harddrive too large and hangs on autodetect) it is wise to stay at your current version.

Which minor issues are you having BTW?
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Dear Edwin (This is a bit long but it will address the background info on my computer and what is happening with it...)

Thank you so much for your helpful response. Again, one week ago, I knew nothing about this stuff or much technical stuff re: computers. You'll pardon the joke, but I am getting a "crash" course.

Here's the quick background: Two months ago, a friend offered to re-format my hard drive for my IBM Aptiva 2176C6B and back up all my files, and upgrade to Win 98 from Win95 and Office 2000 from Office 97. He got carried away, it took a while, and when he was done, he ended up installing the following:

a different motherboard (now a PC Chips M571 3.2A); Generic IDE Disk Type 47--Western Digital-3GB Hard Drive; Sound Card Acer Aopen AW37; Video Card Model Jaton 61-3D S3 ViRGE DX/GX 375/385; HSP56 Micromodem; Buslink CD-RW 32X:12X:40X Lite ON LTR 321235 XSO5, Model # RW3240; PS2 Compatible Mitsumi Mouse, Win 98 SE, and Office 2000 Premium.

He told me that he would give me a list of what he installed when he was done but he never did, so I have been going on line with serial numbers and opening up the computer--playing detective--and have found out the above information through the help of this forum and a couple of other sites--quite an education!!

Well, two weeks after he gave the computer back to me, the computer crashed (first time it has ever happened...I've had it since 1998)--said the FAT files or FAT32 files were deleted or couldn't be read or something like that, so another friend took it and looked at the hard drive through his computer and was able to retrieve all the information and get it all working again. That was when I bought the CD-RW to back up information, as he suggested I do.

So that's the background. Here are the minor issues:

1-I am getting a note when I run the Sys Info program that there is a problem with the Standard PCI Graphics Adaptor. In device mgr. it lists two adaptors: the S3 ViRGE DX/GX and the Standard Graphics Adaptor and then says that there is a problem because the standard driver does not support multiple display. I have been in contact with MS tech support and the computing.net forum to ask for help and have already tried "removing" both display adaptors and reinstalling updated S3 drivers for multiple display...still get same error message. I have tried deleting one graphics adaptor then when I reboot, the computer detects new hardware and wants me to install the drivers. When I do, the same problem arises and I get two display adaptors listed. If I ignore it, the same window pops up each time I reboot. Apparently, i've been told that the computer is reading two different adaptor possibilities on my video card, even though there is only one card and I only have one monitor. So, that is what is happening on that issue to date. It would be great to be able to correct this problem!!

2-Norton Anti-Virus 2000 keeps scanning EVERY file when I open it up--WORD, EXCEL,--EVERY time. I went to OPTIONS and unchecked "scan files when they are run or opened, yet it still does it and I can't seem to stop it. It's more annoying than anything else cause it just slows things down.

3-Occasionally, I have been getting a Blue Screen of Death, as people have been telling me it's called, with a message saying that the system is busy or unstable. Hit Ctrl-Alt-Delete twice to restart or Click any key to continue--the message says. Well, when you click any key, it doesn't do anything. when you do ctrol-alt-delete, it doesn't restart. Sometimes when you click any key, it gives another error message saying that an error has occured. Do you want to close or ignore? Either way, the only solution that seems to work is manually rebooting, despite what the "BSOD" message says to do.

4-Last issue is my mouse...The last 5 days, it will work normally and then all of a sudden it will veer off track: when I move the mouse left or right, the cursor will move up the perimeter of the computer or across the top, opening up desktop icons, closing internet explorer if it is open, moving my start taskbar to the top of the computer from the bottom, re-arrange the desktop icons, opening up "rightclick" menus without right clicking them. So far, the only "solution" has been to unplug the connection to the PS2 port in the back and then re-plug it in. Then the problem will stop for a while. Then, unexpectedly it could start again. I have no idea what is triggering it. I have already tried reinstalling the mouse software. That didn't help. Someone suggested just getting a new mouse or that it could be the PS2 port itself.

So, those are the minor issues I am having. Probably not a reason to upgrade the BIOS from what you have told me but still issues I'd like to resolve.

Thank you again. I appreciate you sharing your expertise with me. It is great to become more knowledgeable.
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
Posts: 6273
Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 7:11 pm
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Contact:

2. contact symantec
4. sounds like a software issue or a dying mouse. Tried another mouse?
jesterabk
BIOS Newbie
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri May 10, 2002 5:32 am
Location: Boston, MA

Dear Edwin:

Thank you for responding.

I sent an e-mail to Symantec/NAV online tech support about the problem. We'll see what happens now...


As for the mouse, I called a computer store in the area and spoke with their repair service and he suggested trying a mouse without a trackball--he recommended a Logitech Optical Mouse 9.42.1 so I went out today and bought one. I just installed it. Now we'll see if that happens anymore. I hope you are right and that it was just a "dying mouse".

Just wondering, you didn't respond to the Standard Graphics Adaptor problem or the Ctrl-Alt-Delete/Blue Screen issue...any idea how to resolve those?

Thank you, Edwin. Good evening!

ps. How do I update my profile if I want to? When I signed up, I didn't really fill it out.
edwin
The Hardware Archivist
Posts: 6273
Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2002 7:11 pm
Location: Netherlands
Contact:

1. Your board has also on-board video, that one is seen as standard PCI VGA adapter. Disable it in device manager (do not delete it, it will simply come back).

4. I need the exact error message you get (not the "unstable" one, but the other one).

On top of this page there's a button called profile...
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