NEO Boards Unofficial FAQ rev 4/05/2004 - two lights on "P" series

Author Svet on 24 February, 2012 | Print | Bookmark
Hi all,

I'll start maintaining this Unofficial FAQ for the NEO boards. The contents of this FAQ are compiled from this forum, user's posted problems, usage issues, compatibility issues reported on the net etc. However, MSI does not responsible for the validity of this FAQ. Please take note. 

Q: I flashed the BIOS and caused my motherboard dead. Can I RMA the board? 
A: This does not happen easily. Please be sure you follow the BIOS flashing instruction and wait for the BIOS flashing process to be fully completed before you restart the PC.
If this problem is caused by the recent bios 1.3 for the Intel875 ( MS6758 ) chipset, then he could ask for RMA from MSI Branch offices for Free. 
If not caused by the 1.3 BIOS, they can still go through the normal RMA process. Please check with MSI branches. 

Q: What is the MSI statement for the bad BIOS flash?

YES. This is the statement :
When you update the bios to v1.4 using the latest flash utility, it will show "Erasing Done and then Programming Done". But actually the process has not been finished yet, you will need to wait about 30 seconds and then the message of "Flash Complete..." is showing up, this will complete the flash process. 

By doing this, end user will assume when it display "Programming Done" message, it has complete the flash process which is wrong. We need to wait until the "Flash Complete..." message has displayed on the screen in order for completing the flash process. 

By any chance we can remove the message of "Programming Done" and only prompt for "Flash Complete..." so customer will not turn off the system or reboot the system when they see "Programming Done" message pop on the screen?

The new version ADSFI708.EXE has fixed this issue. When you finish the BIOS , it will show the "Verifying the ROM data now" message before it showed up the "Flash Complete".
In short, use ADSFI708.EXE to flash the BIOS.

Q: Where can I get beta BIOS? 
MSI do not support beta BIOS. Use at your own risk. Under special condition such as hardware incompatibility issues and a beta BIOS is a feasible resolution, please post in the forum and let the mods arrange for you.

Latest BIOS:
875P Neo : 1.9
865PE Neo2 : 1.9
865PE Neo2-PS : 3.3 New![/B]

beta BIOS: 
875P Neo : 1.9B6 link1 [Thanks to FlyTSI for hosting]
865PE Neo2 : 2.01B link [thanks to FlyTSI]
History:Support Extreme OSB logo. Display L3 cache. Support Prescott cpu & update microcode. Modify Prescott ratio programming.


Q: What is the best BIOS setting for my board?
A: The optimal BIOS setting is different for each system. It's recommended to read more about the BIOS settings, from the board's manual, and some good guides like this : link.

2. Overclocking
Q:I cannot overclock my system. Can MSI update the BIOS so I can overclock? 
A: This board can overclock, but overclocking depends on the peripherals that you are using like memory, CPU, heatsink etc.

Q: Which board has Dynamic Overclocking Technology?
A: Currently only 865PE Neo2-FIS2R

Q: How to disable dynamic overclocking? 
A:Yes, you can disable Dynamic clocking directly in the bios setup. 

3. CoreCell Technology
Q: which product has CoreCell technology built-in?
A: 875P Neo (MS-6758), 865GE Neo2 (MS-6728) & 865PE Neo2 (MS-6728) 

Q: Can I assume that boards with CoreCell chip to have D.O.T ? 

Q: Where are the locations of temperature sensors?
CPU - taken directly from CPU pin (same as AMD thermal pin.
System - RT2 (near winbond I/O) same for 875/865 series boards.

4. RAM
Q: I have this RAM xxxx but it does not work with my board. Can MSI update the BIOS to fix this? 
A: We would suggest you to use the MSI recommended memory for this part as there are a lot of memory brands out there we can't guarantee that all will work with the MB. Please go to the Product Info page, click "Test Report" and choose "Memory Modules".
For example, 875P : Here and select Memory Modules.

Q: My RAM performance is slow, the benchmark software such as PC Mark, Sisoft etc results are below par compared to other brands. WHY?
A: This issue has been identified. New BIOS update has fixed this problem. Please update to the latest BIOS. 

Q: Is there any workaround?
A: There are users here share valueable information of how they tweak their BIOS to achieve good results. Kudos to them! :D Take a look at thislink.

Q: What is MAT?
Memory Acceleration Technology. More to read here! Please read all to get the whole idea. You should have the idea what actually it is. :D 

Q: Why my Neo2-S/LS doesn't have MAT?!
GOOD NEWS!! After first week of July, the new BIOS release will enable MAT in all Neo2 boards! 

Q: What about DOT?
OK. Here is the answer:

Additional Info for MAT support: 
MS-6728 BIOS V1.3 (All 865PE will support)
(Note: No MAT option for 865G due to limitation) Though the 865G have no support for MAT but if you insert AGP VGA card, you could still avail of this function!! 

DOT support: 
MS-6728, for exist boards, only full version supports it

Q: I want to have both MAT and DOT, can I do that?
Of course you can. However, the amount of setting you can used would depend on your current configurations. The suggested stable configuration if MAT as Fast & DOT as Captain

Q: Then what is PAT?
This is what I found in the forum, written by Assaf.
Here's what I understand about PAT. 

As you may or may not know adding pipline stages to any execution unit will allow you to run it at a higher frequency but it will increase the latancy from start to end (measured in clock pulses). 

Now, in order to ensure reliable operation at 800MHz FSB intel added 2 pipline stages to the memory controller (as based on the original dual memory controller in the E7205 chipset) 
This they called i865PE and it will only put into action these 2 stages when 800MHz FSB is applied (which it needs the bios to tell it is the case) 

Intel take the better yealdes of 865PE and validate them for 800MHz with the 2 extra stages disabled. 
These they call 875P. 
A 875P bios with PAT enabled simply does not "tell" the chipset it it running at 800MHz so the extra stages are inactive thus reducing latancy relative to a situation where these stages were activated. 

A hacked 865PE bios will simply follow the 875P bios rule of not notifing the chipset it is running at 800MHz. 

PAT is not an optimization, it's a de-un-optimization

Q: Can 875P/865PE boards support DDR266 RAM for 800MHz FSB CPU?
Yes, although the product webpage did not highlight DDR266.

Q: My Kingston HyperX RAM always cause errors with 875/865 board!
Known issue. Please read here:

Q: My system does not run stably with DDR400
A: Set DDR Voltage to 2.7V and above for DDR400, regardless what the RAM manufacturer advertised.

Q: How to set different FSB:DDR ratio? I can't find in the BIOS

The FSB:DDR ratio can be changed by setting DDR Clock [266,333,400,500,533]. However, your processor's default FSB will affect the ratio. Follow this table:

FSB DDR ratio
133 266 1:1
133 333 4:5
133 400 2:3
133 466 -
133 500 -
133 533 -
200 266 3:2
200 333 5:4
200 400 1:1
200 466 - 
200 500 4:5
200 533 3:4

If you have 800FSB (200Mhz) CPU, use FSB200 table. If you have 533FSB (133MHz) CPU, use FSB133 table to get the ratio. Ratio "-" is not available and out of chipset limit. 

1. DDR400 overclock P4 2.4GHz to 3.0GHz. Ratio 5:4. FSB:250MHz. DDR Clock : 333MHz
2. DDR333 overclock P4 2.4GHz to 3.0GHz. Ratio 3:2. FSB:250MHz. DDR Clock : 266MHz
3. DDR500 Pr default. Ratio 4:5. FSB:200MHz. DDR Clock: 500MHz.

5. HDDs 
Q: Can Promise RAID support 2 PATA + 2 SATA = total of 4 HDDs for a single RAID array? RAID-0? RAID-1? RAID-0+1? 
Yes, Promise RAID support 2 PATA + 2 SATA (RAID-0 or RAID-1 or RAID-0+1) 

Q: Does ICH5R's SATA controller support RAID?
Yes, but only ICH5R, not ICH5. Update: MSI has released beta BIOS 1.81B with ICH5R RAID-1 support. Check the link above in the BIOS section.

Q: My HDD LED doesn't lit!!!
As what I have been told that the HDD LED only lit when there are activities in IDE Primary and Secondary channels. No support for ICH5's SATA and/or Promise SATA activities yet. In other words, the HDD LED will not lit and indicate any activities for your SATA drives.

Q: What is SATA? What is PATA?
SATA = Serial ATA. There was no such "PATA" acronym before. After Serial ATA appeared, people started to find IDE as opposing to Serial ATA, and hence called IDE as "Parallel ATA" or PATA.

Q: I enable SATA in BIOS but I didn't see any SATA Controller listed in the Device Manager!
You will see two sets of IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers - Intel 82801EB Ultra ATA Controller x2, Primary IDE Channel x2, Secondary IDE Channel x2. That's how Windows installed the drivers. 

Q: How should I install my HDD for RAID configuration?
Note that the Promise RAID controller only controls IDE-3, SER-3 and SER-4 ports. Make sure you have your HDDs connected to these ports. Make sure you have enabled "Onboard Promise IDE" in the BIOS. Then after the POST screen, press CTRL-F once prompted and go to the RAID setup screen to setup your RAID configuration.

While the ICH5R controls IDE-1, IDE-2, SER-1 and SER-2. For ICH5R, only SER-1 and SER-2 can be set as RAID. So make sure your SATA HDDs are connected to SER-1 and SER-2. But make sure you have enabled "Configure SATA as RAID" in the BIOS. After the POST screen, press CTRL-I once prompted and go to the ICH5R RAID setup screen to setup your RAID configuration.

For more comprehensive RAID setup guide, please read this guide written by vango44. Great contribution!!

Q: My SATA HDD always gives me errors, data corruptions and can't boot!!
Check the SATA HDD's bridge chip with a "M" logo, the chip build has to be B5P and above, not B2P/B3P which are known to be buggy. B4P is OK but B5P is better. Maxtor and Western Digital SATA HDDs are known to use this bridge chip. Seagate Barracuda V uses different bridge chip and does not make that much problems compared to Maxtor's. RMA the HDDs if possible. MSI is working on the BIOS to fix this incompatible issues. Get BIOS 1.9B3 or 1.6B2 or above. I have seen around October 2003 that Western Digital HDDs come with B5P bridge chip.  

Q: I want to use IDE3 for normal HDD, non-RAID
Set this in the BIOS under Integrated Peripherals:
Onboard Promise IDE : As SATA

Q: What is Legacy mode and what is Native mode?
Legacy mode uses 14 and 15 IRQs. Legacy mode can support up to 2 IDE channels, each IRQ for each channel, which means it can support 2 SATA, or 2 SATA + 2 PATA or 4 PATA. Legacy mode also works comfortably with most OSes including Linux.

Native mode means you may use all available IRQs and can support up to 2 SATA and 4 PATA. Native mode may have issues working with some OSes such as Win9x and Linux, especially on IRQ assignments.
If you have Win98/ME, use Legacy mode only! 

Q: How to enable both SATA and PATA?
You can use both Legacy mode and Native mode, depending on how many devices you use as described above.

For Legacy Mode:
ATA Configuration: PATA+SATA
S-ATA Keep Enabled: Yes
P-ATA Keep Enabled: Yes
PATA Channel Selection: Both
Combined Mode Operation: PATA First/SATA First, depending on which you want to act as 1st Channel.
S-ATA Ports Definition: P0-1st/P1-2nd or P0-3rd/P1-4th, depending on which you want to act as Master.

For Native Mode:
ATA Configuration: SATA Only or PATA only, depending on which you want to be the FIRST BOOT device!
S-ATA Keep Enabled: Yes if you chose PATA only
P-ATA Keep Enabled: Yes if you chose SATA Only
PATA Channel Selection: Both
Combined Mode Operation: PATA First/SATA First, depending on which you want to act as 1st Channel.
S-ATA Ports Definition: - P0-1st/P1-2nd or P0-3rd/P1-4th, depending on which you want to act as Master.

Q: What is S-ATA Ports Definition?
There are two options: P0-1st/P1-2nd and P0-3rd/P1-4th. If you choose P0-1st/P1-2nd, your Port-0 S-ATA (SER-1) will become the 1st IDE Master, ie IDE-1 Master. and Port-1 S-ATA (SER-2) will become 2nd IDE Master. If you plan to boot with SATA HDD, it's recommended to set to P0-1st/P1-2nd. If you plan to boot with PATA HDD, it's recommended to set to P0-3rd/P1-4th.

Q: When I enable SATA+PATA mode, why only IDE-1 or IDE-2 can be used?
If you chose "SATA 1st Channel", IDE-1 will be dropped. If you chose "PATA 1st Channel", IDE-2 will be dropped.

Q: I want my SATA to be the 1st IDE drive in Legacy Mode along with PATA, how?
Set this:
ATA Configuration: PATA+SATA
S-ATA Keep Enabled: don't care
P-ATA Keep Enabled: don't care
PATA Channel Selection: don't care
Combined Mode Operation: SATA 1st Channel
S-ATA Ports Definition: P0-1st/P1-2nd

With this configuration, you can have your SER-1 and SER-2 act as IDE-1 master and slave. But you can only connect your PATA drives on IDE-2 slot. 

Q: I am a noob, I want more details.
More info? here

Q: How to support 250GB HDD? Windows only sees up to 134GB.
Follow this instruction: here for Win2000 and WinXP.

Q: I've installed a new SATA HDD, I can find it in Device Manager but it doesn't appear in Windows Explorer at all! HELP!!
You need to format the HDD, not just SATA but also PATA HDD then only Windows Explorer can see it and assign it with a drive letter. To format a HDD, right click on My Computer, select Manage, look for Disk Management. You should see a no-drive-letter unformatted drive there in the list. Get it formatted by right click on it and choose the obvious option there is.

6. Onboard Sound
Q: My onboard sound lost after I overclock the system!
Goto BIOS setup and lock AGP/PCI to 67/33.

7. Universal Serial Bus [Thanks to Danny for contribution]
Q: Why doesn't my board have USB2 ports?
A: The ICH5 and ICH5R chipsets support up to 8 USB2 ports. Under Windows XP when you view your USB settings using Device Manager you will see 4 Intel 82801EB USB Universal Host Controllers and 1 Intel 82801EB USB2 Enhanced Host Controller; Windows 2000 is similar, you are looking for "Enhanced". If you don't see "Enhanced" you need to install SP1 for XP or the latest service pack for W2K. If you have these service packs installed and still don't see enhanced, used the Device Manager to remove the 5 controllers and reboot to allow Windows to correctly install the right drivers.
Q: If I have 8 USB2 ports, why does Sandra tell me they are USB1.1?
A: When lower speed devices are plugged in, or high speed devices are plugged in without USB2 operating system support, they are routed to the low speed host controllers. High speed devices are routed directly to the Enhanced host controller when operating system support exists.
Base on

8. CPU - contributed by Danny!  :biggthumbsup:
Q: I have an 800 FSB Pentium 4 CPU, but the bios is set for 200! If I set it to 800 it crashes! What is wrong?
A: The FSB rating of the CPU is 4 times the FSB rating of the motherboard. To quote Intel: "This is accomplished through a physical signaling scheme of quad pumping the data transfers over a 200 MHz clocked system bus and a buffering scheme allowing for sustained 800 MHz data transfers." So valid settings are 100 for a 400FSB CPU, 133 for a 533FSB CPU and 200 for an 800FSB CPU.

Q: The Windows task manager and the Device Manager show I have two CPU's. What's wrong?
A: Your CPU is a model that has Hyperthreading technology and it is enabled in the bios. To quote Intel: "It allows software programs to "see" two processors and work more efficiently. This new technology enables the processor to execute two series, or threads, of instructions at the same time, thereby improving performance and system responsiveness." 

Q: Do these boards support Prescott CPU?
Update: Prescott spec is not finalized. There might be more requirements needed other than meeting FMB guideline. It is hard to say if current motherboards can fully support it.[/color]
This is the latest info from MSI. Check this link here

9. Power Management
Q: What are S1/POS and S3/STR modes?
S1/POS = Power On Suspend, nothing turn off just that everything is running in extremely slow.

S3/STR = Suspend to RAM, PSU only powers 5V_STBY to the board for RAM refreshing, the rest all off.

S4 = Suspend to Disk. Win2k/XP calls it "Hibernation" mode. In this mode, the RAM and CPU state images are copied into the HDD. After S4 mode, you can safely remove the power cord.

S5 = Soft Off. PSU still supplies 5V_STBY.
G3 = mechanical off. No power at all to the board.

Q: Where to set the standby modes?
For S1 and S3, you can set the standby mode to either S1 or S3, not both, in the BIOS. Note that Windows cannot choose which standby mode to run. You have to set it in the BIOS.

For S4, you can only set it in Windows 2k/XP (and ME, but not 98). 

10. Others
Q: I have MSI FX5900 which has double sided fans, can it fit in the board?
Most boards can fit the FX5900. Including, the NEOs' MS-6728, MS-6758, and others like KT4A ultra, MS6777 Nvidia board.

Q: Why my NB Temp value is always stay the same?
On 875P Neo and 865PE Neo2, there is no NB temp sensor! The value you read from CoreCenter does not mean anything. Please update to the latest CoreCenter.

Q. What are the two lights on my "P" series board for?
A. These are the Overclock Signal Lights:
1. GreenGreen: Both AGP and CPU are dynamic overclocking.
2. GreenRed: The memory is overclocking to 533MHz.
3. RedGreen: The external frequency is overclocking to 350MHz, and the frequency between the north bridge and CPU is 1400MHz.
4. RedRed: CPU is dynamic overclocking now.

There are more to come soon. Please do not reply or request for FAQ contents in this thread. The FAQ will be picked up from the popular threads. Thanks.

Update History:
6/23/2003 : Added onboard sound lost fix
6/25/2003 : Added HDD LED
6/26/2003 : GOOD NEWS!! MAT to be available in all Neo2 boards!
6/27/2003 : SATA, PATA
7/1/2003 : 865G MAT support!!
7/7/2003 : MAT + DOT support
7/7/2003 : Prescott CPU support
7/7/2003 : DDR266 RAM support for 800MHz FSB CPU
7/17/2003 : Prescott CPU support UPDATED
7/18/2003 : SATA & PATA updated
8/15/2003 : latest BIOS updates

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Category: Retired motherboards

Last updated on 24 February, 2012 with 2164 views