Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Noid by any other name

Warning: Some of the following material qualifies as a rant.

Is still annoying. It irritates me how hardware manufacturer's and retailers conspire to elevate ram prices at times. Take a recent purchase I made from Ascendtech. I have this NIB cpu sitting on my desk and wanted a board for it. Well I had a system go bad and needed an alternate power supply to continue troubleshooting. I had no POST card at the time. So for (RC410-M2 and a P4 520) $51 US I found this setup. Note it is now a $75 part. It was shipped for $24 bringing the total to $84 and change. I could have ordered memory from them at a premium (iirc 2 gb was circa $69) price but I had some I thought to re-use. Patriot DDR2-667 It seemed a good compromise. A case and power supply and board and cpu except the memory failed to boot the machine. I pulled the power supply and checked the other board. This traced to a bad agp card. Unplugged the fan on the card and it booted. That system is down.

There was no manual shipped via Asecndtech so I called them asking for some help. He replied after I pulled it and we got a beep that I had incompatible memory. I could return it. (loose money on shipping twice) or try something else. Their memory was still higher than I see listed on the Ascendtech site today. I asked for manual and was told there was none available. He was just silent when asked what the specifications were. Or non-informative. (ddr2 667)

In the end I spent about 8 man hours searching chipsets and manufacturers to order compatible memory for the board from Kingston. I guess persistence pays in the end. Though I am not likely to buy products from them in the future and recommend you buy a complete barebones if you do. Newegg and Tiger Direct are the two vendors I use most often. BTW this board is afrom the Acer e500 bios splash says.

So now I have a dual core system I can consider dumping the AMD64 3200+ as the LGA 775 setup will be faster if more power hungry. Even that should be a wash though the 3200+ is an agp board and the newer board is onboard pci-e Not trivial to re-install a complete Gentoo on a new board Likely the quickest way would be to build in support for the new system in a chroot on another partition then just swap the drive over and reboot ;) YMMV of course but isn't tech support just like dealing with the 'Noid?

Editors Note: Thought a bit about this and will add here that as of the time of my purchase of Kingston ram for that board A Kingston sales rep replied "We don't sell memory for that board. It takes a special 'gigabit' chip" When i pressed conversationally she confirmed she just was not allowed to supply me with the req'd part number saying "We don't make that type anymore"