Maybe you’ve wondered why I seemed so away the past few days. That’s because I’ve got some new computer parts. And those parts don’t work like I want them to. I’ve ordered three things:

-Motherboard: Asus M3N78-EH
-Graphics card: Asus EN9600GT HTDI
-PSU: Spire Jewel 420W

It all started when wanted a better graphics card than the onboard Geforce 6150. I just bought the Asus EN9600GT for my old Asus M2NPV-VM. But it ended wrong, like I described here:Asus Asus EN9600GT + Asus M2NPV-VM = no signal.

But I ordered it again, but now with a motherboard capable of PCIe 2.0 and a better PSU that has the PCIe plug, so I won’t have to sacrifice two IDE power plugs. A plus I discovered later was that the new PSU is much more silent than my old Q-Tec Dual Fan Gold 400W.

But after I connected all placed all cards in the slots and all cables in their ports, which went a lot better than my previous motherbord where the 9600GT blocked one of the IDE ports, I discovered that there was some kind of problem. First I thought it was the same as I had with my old motherboard, but updating the BIOS, nor disabling APIC solved it. It just wouldn’t boot.

What’s happening is that it can’t discover the SATA harddisk good. It does find it, but something times out, it checks again, times out again, until I end up into a BusyBox. Somehow it just can’t find/mount the harddisk. But it can read the initrd file, which is very strange.
I wanted to test the computer and installed hardy on an old IDE harddisk, but after that I discovered that the onboard ethernet connection doesn’t work. I can connect the cable and nm-applet does try to connect, but DHCOFFER times out. The spare PCI ethernet card I tried didn’t connect the cable at all, so that one’s probably broken. So I’ve got no internet, and no data, since my computer is the only computer in the house that supports SATA. I tried to boot Windows, which was installed on the IDE harddisk before I installed Ubuntu on it, but it doesn’t work. Windows refuses to boot when you change the motherboard and you’re required to reinstall it.

I’ve reported two bugs describing my problems, but I have no idea of how to download the updates when everything is solved, because the Live CD and the version it provides don’t work. This are the reports:

bug #231162
bug #231159

This is the reason that you probably haven’t seen me for a while now. This computer doesn’t contain my data nor has an IRC client installed. And I have to share it with my sister and mother. On top of that it runs WIndows XP and thanks to SP3 the nVidia drivers don’t work anymore, so the screen rendering is very slow.

I hope to be back as soons as possible, but maybe the only way to do that is to put my old motherboard back! And that would be a waste, so I’m refusing to do that. 😛

(A question: my graphics card has some kind of thing at the top that looks like the thing that you put into the slot when inserting a PCI(e) card. I can’t describe it better, I hope you understand it. 😉 I’m just curious.)

Join the conversation


  1. The thing on top of the graphics card is most likely for SLI support.

    This allows you to insert 2 cards and link them together (with a small bridge that plugs into the top of each graphics card) for increased performance.

  2. Have you tried disabling AHCI in the BIOS? I’ve noticed that Linux often doesn’t recognize SATA hard drives when AHCI is enabled.

    (Also, ACPI, AHCI, APCI are frustratingly similar acronyms. Fortunately, we have Wikipedia)

    Finally, I ran into problems getting xorg to start with my 9600GT card. It sounds like you haven’t gotten to a GUI yet, so just in case I’ll tell you what I did to fix that.

    The machine would boot, but would always hang with a black screen as soon as Xorg tried to start, probably since this card is still bleeding-edge as far as Linux drivers are concerned. After lots of false starts, the fix was to boot into recovery mode (select in Grub) and install the beta NVIDIA drivers (I’m using 137.08) from the command line.

    Hope some of that was helpful!

  3. @Paul Bersch
    On the IDE harddisk I already got into the graphics environment witht he 9600GT! So fortunately things have improved. That’s how I discovered that my onboard ethernet card didn’t work properly. But thank you for your long reply, I’ll try to disable AHCI if I can. (There is an option called SATA Mode, where you can choose between SATA, RAID and AHCI. That one was and is on SATA, so that can’t be the problem.)

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.