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Rebuilding an old computer


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#1 timmeh2

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 01:05 AM

Just for the hell of it, reworking an old tower i bought second hand in 2006.

Having trouble identifying mother board. Gigabyte Legacy board, GA-6VX7-4X rev 5.0 is the number on the board.

Can only find rev 1.2 in searches, the diode/jumper layout is all wrong.

Only picture i can find that looks right, is -4X-AP, from memory the chip numbers differ somewhat.

Have some chip numbers, Creative CT5880(sound?), VIA VT82 C686B(system?), there is another that has a heatsink glued to it that i'm not going to remove just yet.

Just researching to find what I've got/what can be done with it/how far I can push it before it goes BANG.

Have thrown together a couple of machines in the past with varying degrees of success, from junk parts and donated units.

Got them working essentially, but always have some problem or other. Want to try and fix this just to say "i did it!"

Need positive ID to find drivers, manual, jumper settings and so forth.

Was a working machine only a week or two ago, stripped down for cleaning, what the hell, let's see what's possible.

Suggestions on where I might find more/accurate info?


Edited by timmeh2, 21 May 2016 - 01:58 AM.

Where does this goBANG


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#2 technonymous

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 06:46 AM

Identifying the motherboard is indeed hard for this. I haven't found it even on Gigabytes listing of socket 370 motherboards. Even though it is etched and branded Gigabyte, but is likely a special board for a specific company IE: Dell, which would explain different form factors sizes and layout of the motherboard. To further add to that the revision 5 is higher than any revision bios that Gigabyte lists. So that right there tells me that some company e-machine, dell etc does the support for the bios revision and apparently your motherboard was built default with rev5. So that is probably why. Companies do like to brand the bios with their logo splash screen at bios post. So overall, it sounds like you have proprietary customized motherboard of some form factor to fit their case design.


Edited by technonymous, 21 May 2016 - 06:47 AM.


#3 JohnC_21

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 08:01 AM

Is there a FCC ID number on the board?

 

There is a this motherboard but it has a C added to the motherboard model

 

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=1449#sp

 

The manual showing the chipsets can be downloaded here. The one discrepancy I saw was the Via chipset. In the manual its a 686A. The manual is for Rev 1.1

 

http://www.nodevice.com/download/user_manual/gigabyte+ga-6vxc7-4x.html?

 

Here is the manual for Rev 5. Chipset does show 686B

 

http://download1.gigabyte.asia/Files/Manual/motherboard_manual_ga-6vxc7-4x-p_e.pdf


Edited by JohnC_21, 21 May 2016 - 10:22 AM.


#4 technonymous

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 06:00 PM

Is there a FCC ID number on the board?

 

There is a this motherboard but it has a C added to the motherboard model

 

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=1449#sp

 

The manual showing the chipsets can be downloaded here. The one discrepancy I saw was the Via chipset. In the manual its a 686A. The manual is for Rev 1.1

 

http://www.nodevice.com/download/user_manual/gigabyte+ga-6vxc7-4x.html?

 

Here is the manual for Rev 5. Chipset does show 686B

 

http://download1.gigabyte.asia/Files/Manual/motherboard_manual_ga-6vxc7-4x-p_e.pdf

Wow, good job finding the link to rev5. I found a list even with pictures of the motherboards and it was 5 pages long of socket 370 motherboards and not one with GA-6VX7-4X. There was no 6V's in the alphabet soup that I could see.


Edited by technonymous, 21 May 2016 - 06:04 PM.


#5 timmeh2

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 01:08 AM

As far as I can see, the FCC #(directly under the FCC logo) is also GA-6VX7-4X.

Most of those links I've also seen, close but not quite right. Always something slightly different, jumpers, cap's, plug position etc.

I've even found a picture of one that looks spot on but has a different model # + chip(s), although it(pic) was very small and difficult say for sure.

The layout of cap's, switches + plugs looked right.

Could be that it's custom job. 3 stickers on rear of case,

                                                                                        1. EDSYS Computers.

                                                                                            Ser. # B123601.

                                                                                            AUS. Assembled.

 

                                                                                        2. Coral Technologies.

                                                                                            Sys. Ser. # CS0197.

                                                                                            Mod. Celeron 900, 128Mb, XXX(illegible). Build Date.12 Nov 2001.

 

                                                                                        3. Product Code EDSPEC900.

                                                                                            Processor/Spd Celeron 900

                                                                                            Ram 128   Mb Chipset VIA

                                                                                            HDD 20GB    Type IDE

 

I'm aware most that is just manufacturer/supplier/builder info and probably not much help in identifying whats inside but hey, ya never know.

Stab in the dark, #1 is(was) a local supplier, #2 was the mob that built/sold it, #3 looks to be the same type of sticker as #1(same place?)

Sure is an oddball. I guess if nought else turns up, I can try one of these links. At the end of the day, it's just an old banger.


Edited by timmeh2, 22 May 2016 - 01:18 AM.

Where does this goBANG


#6 timmeh2

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 03:41 AM

May have found what I need, GA-6VX7-4X-AP looks to be the closest that I can find. A lot of the jumpers are missing but those that are there are correct.

As far as I can see, all other plugs, sockets and switches are correct. We'll see what happens.

Can't post a link, found it in the same place as links above.


Edited by timmeh2, 22 May 2016 - 03:48 AM.

Where does this goBANG


#7 JohnC_21

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 07:48 AM

May be worth a shot to contact Gigabyte technical support and upload an image of the MB. They may have the answer.

 

http://www.gigabyte.com/support-downloads/technical-support.aspx



#8 timmeh2

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Posted 22 May 2016 - 10:16 AM

I'll have to get on and start learnin' how to use my new phone and get right on that, cheers.


Where does this goBANG


#9 Fascist Nation

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 10:22 AM

MB ID from BIOS String  (explanation)

 

To return the current BIOS revision type in the command prompt window: wmic bios get smbiosbiosversion

 

To find most up to date drivers for anything:

 

http://forum.scottmueller.com/viewtopic.php?t=1308

http://www.pcworld.com/article/2089404/how-to-easily-find-drivers-for-unknown-devices-in-windows.html



#10 dc3

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 10:29 AM

Drivers should always be downloaded from the manufacturer's website.


Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#11 Fascist Nation

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 11:01 AM

Gigabyte is famous for a huge number of MB model #'s that vary by a single component/option.  At least they still keep most of their old info.

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=1549#dl - GA-6VM7-4I (rev. 5.0)

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=1449#dl - GA-6VXC7-4X (rev. 5.0)

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=1432#dl - GA-6VXC7-4X-P (rev. 5.0)

http://ee.gigabyte.com/products/page/mb/ga-6vx7-4x/specs/ - GA-6VX7-4X (rev not listed; might be 1.0?)  I saw the rev. 1.2 link you mentioned

Should be able to nail down most chips on your board.

VIA driver packs:
http://download.viatech.com/en/support/driversSelect.jsp

http://www.viatech.com/en/support/drivers/

old Creative (Creative may still have a legacy download site...I haven't checked in a while)
http://www.station-drivers.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8&Itemid=130&lang=en

Might be able to find the actual link with downloads on an Internet Archive - Google Cache of Gigabyte's tech support site around year of mfg.

 


Edited by Fascist Nation, 23 May 2016 - 11:30 AM.


#12 Fascist Nation

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Posted 23 May 2016 - 11:14 AM

Drivers should always be downloaded from the manufacturer's website.

Nonsense! 

 

Manufacturers as I suspect you mean the term refers to the component.  The chip maker which the driver interfaces the OS with the chip is produced by the chip maker and distributed to those who buy the chip almost always unaltered by the component maker except for optionally adding their name.  The component makers usually only update drivers for their component (or system) for 1-3 years, maybe five years for a corporate/business designated model. Here they have tested the driver for compatibility with their component (of value).  They have abandoned supporting newer driver releases for the same chip(s) that may contain important stability and security fixes, even speed fixes. 

 

The chip maker may sell a particular chip for years or even decades updating the driver along the way.

Most people nowadays actually get their drivers loaded by the OS' driver collection or online automate driver search through the OS updater without ever being aware of it going on.  These drivers are certified to work.  But these drivers are from the chip makers not the component manufacturers.  And more importantly the Updaters do a pretty good job of identifying the chips and providing functioning drivers (though not necessarily the newest or in the case of old components the last driver available).

 

On old components you often no longer have a choice.  The drivers out there are scattered and need to be hunted down.  That is part of the fun of supporting old gear.  You may need to unpack a manufaturer's driver package from a system maker like Lenovo, to extract the actual driver needed since a driver pack installation routine may check to see that it is running on a Lenovo in this example and refusing to run if it is not, but that doesn't mean the desired functioning driver for the chip is not present and capable of being loaded on its own by the OS.  Kind of satisfying in tracking down old drivers and making something work. 


Edited by Fascist Nation, 23 May 2016 - 11:27 AM.


#13 timmeh2

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Posted 28 May 2016 - 11:25 PM

Having an issue with restarting when modem is on/connected(almost certainly an adjustment that i have made somewhere recently as it didn't happen until a few weeks ago). Also plugging in a flashdrive while online(always been like it AFAIK, no idea if this is normal or not). Not game to try plugging new phone in under similar circumstances to retrieve photos yet, but i digress, have stumbled on a sticker on the m/board(pasted right after "ASSEM:" printed on corner) that has "AP" on it, so might be on the right path.

 

Another quick question which should probably be posted elsewhere, are there any tricks to minimise dust build=up. eg: silicon spray on heatsink(while it's detached from processor), fan blades, inside of the case while it's stripped down? Reversing fan direction? Filters?


Edited by timmeh2, 28 May 2016 - 11:43 PM.

Where does this goBANG


#14 timmeh2

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Posted 04 June 2016 - 04:19 AM

Back up and running now, CHEERS to all for links. I think have the right one with the "AP" version.

Now to get the USB ports functioning again. They are OK in device manager, but when a flashdrive is plugged in, nothing registers in "My Computer".

 

 

Edit: Did a bit more to this overnight. Has 2 ports on M/board and a 5 port PCI card(with disc), i'm sure I have loaded m/board drivers and loaded everything on disc that has anything to do with W98. No conflicts in Device Manager but have nothing showing up in My Computer at all. Have I missed something?


Edited by timmeh2, 04 June 2016 - 09:29 PM.

Where does this goBANG


#15 technonymous

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Posted 04 June 2016 - 06:43 PM

Having an issue with restarting when modem is on/connected(almost certainly an adjustment that i have made somewhere recently as it didn't happen until a few weeks ago). Also plugging in a flashdrive while online(always been like it AFAIK, no idea if this is normal or not). Not game to try plugging new phone in under similar circumstances to retrieve photos yet, but i digress, have stumbled on a sticker on the m/board(pasted right after "ASSEM:" printed on corner) that has "AP" on it, so might be on the right path.

 

Another quick question which should probably be posted elsewhere, are there any tricks to minimise dust build=up. eg: silicon spray on heatsink(while it's detached from processor), fan blades, inside of the case while it's stripped down? Reversing fan direction? Filters?

Back in the day not to much thought went into that. Cases today might have filters in the front to minimize the dust. Fans keep them lubed up with 3in1 machine oil. Some you can peel the sticker off & pull the plug and put a couple drops in there. Being careful not to get oil on the surface you can reuse the sticker. If the sticker goes bad I  just went to the kids section in the store and buy a pack of happy face stickers or something lol The metal foil stickers work good.






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