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videobruce

ASRock 990FX Ext 4 MB owners; questions

4 posts in this topic

Sorry I couldn't come up with a better title, but it would of been too long.

Situation: New build;
ASRock 990FX Ext 4 MB,
Will be running Win7,
Two drives transfered over from nForce 570 MB as is,
New SSD & 1TB HDD, neither formatted,
All drives SATA,
MB is set for AHCI for all ports.

Questions;
1. Can individual SATA ports be disabled?
2. In the UEFI interface (BIOS) under Storage, there is a external eSATA port option to enabler or disable the SATA ESP for each of the six SATA ports. What is that suppose to mean?
3. I enabled the "AMD AHCI BIOS ROM" option, but I see no difference during boot.?
4. Is there the ability to use a conventional old school BIOS instead of UEFI?

Now here is the kicker;
When I connect either to ports 7 or 8 which uses a Marvell controller, both have been able to boot into XP by themselves. I though this was impossible unless you radically modify them to do so. But when I switch either over to ports 1-6, the BIOS sees them, but both produce a BSOD as expected (until now on the other controller). How can this happen??

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3. In basic practice, you will not "see" a meaningful difference booting a PC in IDE mode vs AHCI using a standard spindle drive.

4. Boards that have UEFI do not have a BIOS. Those with UEFI do BIOS emulation to handle legacy devices. It is comparable to how there is no DOS in Windows XP but you can still use the command prompt.

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Questions;

1. Can individual SATA ports be disabled?

No they can not be disabled individually, and why would you? You can only disable the Marvell controller and the eSATA port.

2. In the UEFI interface (BIOS) under Storage, there is a external eSATA port option to enabler or disable the SATA ESP for each of the six SATA ports. What is that suppose to mean?

Most of the time one or two internal SATA ports can be routed to be used with a eSATA connected at the back of the PC, sometimes you can choose what port you are going to route.

3. I enabled the "AMD AHCI BIOS ROM" option, but I see no difference during boot.?

This stands aside from enabling ACHI, I don't know what it does on your board but it might be that it just not initializes the HDDs before booting, this could save you some seconds when booting up (BIOS mode, not UEFI). ACHI and IDE make a difference in boot-up times, ACHI is faster, NCQ enabled drives or not (most have NCQ anyway), unless it´s an optical drive (that could give problems with ACHI).

4. Is there the ability to use a conventional old school BIOS instead of UEFI?

No there is not, and why would you? UEFI shows the same or more options than the outdated BIOS. You will get used to it ;).

Now here is the kicker;

When I connect either to ports 7 or 8 which uses a Marvell controller, both have been able to boot into XP by themselves. I though this was impossible unless you radically modify them to do so. But when I switch either over to ports 1-6, the BIOS sees them, but both produce a BSOD as expected (until now on the other controller). How can this happen??

That is normal, the Marvell controller is seen as a standard SATA controller, the AMD controller uses ACHI (if enabled) and a total different approach of using the SATA controller. Better ask this question in the XP forum section if you want details on this.

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