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Author Topic: MSI Z68A GD65 (G3) with newer GTX 9xx GPU's B2 error code  (Read 4182 times)

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steinar.birkelundTopic starter

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Hello,

I have an Intel SANDY BRIDGE system:

Motherboard: MSI Z68A GD65 (G3) 7681
BIOS: 23.7 (which is the LATEST BIOS for SandyBridge CPU's)
CPU: Intel Core i5 2500K
PSU: 620 Watt
RAM: 8GB DDR3 1333Mhz (2x4GB)
OS: Win7 Pro 64bit
GPU: NVidia 560Ti, which worked fine for years but went bad and now needs replacement


NEW GPU:
I need a CUDA capable card, so I bought a GTX 960 4GB.

But it did not boot at all (B2 error code).

After a little reserach, there are a LOT of people with this exact problem (GPU working fine, just not on this motherboard).


SO... the questions:

1.
Will only the OLD nvidia 5/6-series work? If so, why is that?
(I know the 5-series work, since my 560Ti did, but will the 6-series work too?)

2.
Is there any way to get newer cards, like the 9XX-series, to work? If so, how?

3.
If I *IGNORE* the advice from MSI, and flash my BIOS to the IvyBridge/ME-update, will this make it possible to use a newer card like the 9-series - even if I do not have an IvyBrigde CPU?

What negative consequences are there if I update BIOS & ME (to IvyBridge)?
(after all, MSI tells me not to do it unless I have Ivy Bridge CPU).


Thank you very much.

-- Steinar
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darkhawk

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1. Yes, an old GTX5xx series card will work just fine.
2. Yes, you need to update to at least ME8 in the BIOS. Basically, the latest BIOS update for this board. This can be accomplished via M-Flash standard operating procedure (see https://us.msi.com/Motherboard/support/Z68AGD65_G3.html#down-bios at the bottom of the page) or via the MSI HQ USB flasher : >>Use the MSI HQ Forum USB flasher<<
3. Yes, see the answer to #2 above.
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Marked as best answer by steinar.birkelund on 23-May-16, 19:34:58

flobelix

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1.
Will only the OLD nvidia 5/6-series work? If so, why is that?
(I know the 5-series work, since my 560Ti did, but will the 6-series work too?)

VGA's from GTX 7 series on and especially GTX 9xx do require Intel Management Engine Firmware version 8 (ME8) on Intel 6 series boards (Z68, P67 and so on). All Sandy Bridge bios versions are only including ME7. Trying with an ME7 version results in the vga not being intialized (B2 error).

2.
Is there any way to get newer cards, like the 9XX-series, to work? If so, how?
 

You simply need to update to an ME8 bios. Will be explained below.

3.
If I *IGNORE* the advice from MSI, and flash my BIOS to the IvyBridge/ME-update, will this make it possible to use a newer card like the 9-series - even if I do not have an IvyBrigde CPU?

What negative consequences are there if I update BIOS & ME (to IvyBridge)?
(after all, MSI tells me not to do it unless I have Ivy Bridge CPU).
 

Using an ME8 bios with a Sandy Bridge cpu on a 6 series mainboard can limit the oc results and abilities. Besides all will work normally. It is also the only way to run a GTX 9xx vga on such a board.

The latest ever released bios for your board is E7681IMS.P93 (25.9 beta 3) which is the best to use. Flash it like described below:

  A.) Download >>this archive<< and place it on your desktop. Do not decompress.
  B.) Download and install the >>MSI HQ Forum USB flasher<< .
  C.) Insert your FAT32 formatted usb stick.
  D.) Make sure that all win 8 options are disabled. (Fast Boot etc) Also make sure the legacy USB is enabled.
  E.) Start the forum flash tool and select option 1. Then point the tool at the compressed archive we downloaded earlier. Then to your USB Flash Drive.
  F.) Boot to the USB  
  G.) Now follow the directions and let the tool flash
  H.) After flashing reinstall ME drivers in Windows: http://download.msi.com/dvr_exe/intel6x_ime_mb.zip
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steinar.birkelundTopic starter

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Thank you very much for replying.
I was really hoping for a way to use a 9xx card with this motherboard. So this made me very happy.

I will let you know how it goes.

But because of the poorly written warning from MSI not to flash to latest BIOS, I returned my brand new working GPU, so it'll take a while but I'll update this thread.

IF MSI READS: You should describe the latest BIOS differently, your description made me believe that I could not use the latest BIOS versions because I did not have Ivy Bridge CPU.

Today I learned the warning is nothing to worry about, and I could have been using my new GPU right now!


I am trusting the answers above so much that I'm about to order the GTX 960 again. When I get it I'll let you know how it went.

Thanks

--steinar
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RemusM

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But because of the poorly written warning from MSI not to flash to latest BIOS, I returned my brand new working GPU, so it'll take a while but I'll update this thread.

IF MSI READS: You should describe the latest BIOS differently, your description made me believe that I could not use the latest BIOS versions because I did not have Ivy Bridge CPU.

It's not a "poorly written warning".
Simply put, Z68A + Sandy Bridge CPU are not suitable for GTX 9xx.
Many people bricked the boards trying to update the BIOS for Ivy CPUs.
Other people got all kind of issues and performances drop.
For all these reasons, MSI recommend you to update BIOS with ME8 only if you are using IvyBridge 22nm CPU
:beerchug:
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Mainboard: HC85
Processor: Zilog Z80 3.5MHz
System RAM: 48KB
Video RAM: 16KB (only 6912 bytes are used for Pixel Shader effects)
Video Card: integrated (16 colors)
PSU: 5V/3A
OS: BASIC Spectrum Sinclair

note: NO overclocking!

xmad

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That's a great warning...

You should have seen them before google translate. :lol_anim:
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steinar.birkelundTopic starter

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RemusM wrote:
"many people bricked their boards trying to update for Ivy CPU's"

Did they fail because they kept their old SandyBrigde CPU?

If so, does this mean that it is safe to upgrade BIOS/ME as long as I have an IvyBrigde CPU?

Should I flash BIOS before or after installation of the new IvyBrigde CPU?


(YES, I'm actually considering buying a CPU I do not need, if this avoids bricking my motherboard)


Thank you very much for your help, I really appreciate it.

--steinar
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darkhawk

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We've been having more and more users like yourself have this question.

Most just flash the new BIOS and stick with their current CPU, and generally speaking it just works fine.

There's been a few cases where problems have occurred and RMA'ing the motherboard was the only way to resolve it.

But this is becoming a fairly common issue now. Many users don't feel the need to upgrade to the newest hardware (I know I don't.....as I write this from a Alienware M11xR2 with a Core i7 680 in it....)....and because of that they usually just upgrade to the latest video card. It's a very common practice.

If it was me, I would verify the warranty status of your board first. See if it's still within warranty. If it's not, just be aware that if it doesn't flash correctly you may have to send it in to get fixed for a charge.

Lastly, I know you don't NEED to have an Ivybridge CPU to use the latest BIOS for the board. Other users who have 2500K and 2700K CPU's have been doing the upgrade to use the newer NVidia cards. 

You don't need an Ivybridge to do the upgrade, and you shouldn't need an Ivybridge after the upgrade for it to work.

The biggest downside with upgrading to Ivybridge is being aware of the limited overclocking ability with the new BIOS. My understanding (and I could be wrong....) is that with the new BIOS you lose some ability to overclock the CPU as compared to the previous BIOS revisions. I can't remember off the top of my head what exactly changes. But if you aren't overclocking now, then it probably doesn't matter to you at all.
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flobelix

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Following the instructions provided by me above and using the archive provided it is pretty impossible to brick the board. It was an issue with MSI's (and other manufacturer's) standard method as the ME update tended to fail.  

Using the particular board you have with the bios provided there is almost no downside except possibly limited oc with a Sandy cpu. All works absolutely perfect besides nbo matter if using Ivy or Sandy. There is no need to buy an Ivy Bridge cpu which is also money wasted. Better save that money and buy an entirely updated platform later. To add: with your current bios an Ivy Bridge cpu would not even work to be able to update.
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steinar.birkelundTopic starter

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Thank you all for your input, really!


As you know, I need Intel ME8 and latest BIOS to get my nvidia 9-series GPU to work (even boot).

But MSI recommend to not update BIOS with ME8, unless I have an IvyBrigde CPU.

I decided to just go for it anyway, with my current SandyBrigde CPU, and build a new PC if it bricked the motherboard.

@flobelix:

Thank you very much for your help, I followed your steps:

* I successfully flashed to latest BIOS using the MSI HQ Forum USB Flasher, and used the BIOS you reccomended (25.9 b3).

* I cleared CMOS, loaded defaults, no overclock (only modified basic but essential values)

* Bootet into Windows 7  (using integrated graphics) and then installed ME8 using the link you provided: "download.msi.com/dvr_exe/intel6x_ime_mb.zip"

NO BRICK :-)

But I do have issues, the Intel Management Engine Interface is only at version 7.1.21.1134.
And as you told me, I need version ME8 to boot my GPU.

Did you link to the correct ME-zip file?

Any advice?


BTW: I had to reactivate Windows 7 after the update.


Thank you.

-- steinar
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flobelix

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ME8 is firmware is included in the bios. If it updates you have an ME8 bios. The rest is just a driver, it would not stop from booting. Driver was accidently indeed ME7. That's the right one: http://download.msi.com/dvr_exe/intel_me81_win78_xp.zip

As your bios is updated a GTX960 should work now.
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steinar.birkelundTopic starter

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The latest update above did the trick.
My GPU problem is now solved, no further help is needed.

Thanks for your quick help, which probably helped other people with same setup as mine.
This issue is now solved, thank you.

-- Steinar
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flobelix

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:pompom: Nice, thanks for reporting back. If you could mark best answer it could help people to identify the solution.
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MSI MEG X570 Godlike (MS-7C34) Bios 1.7
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