The motherboard or mainboard is the central printed circuit board (PCB) in many modern computers and holds many of the crucial components of the system.

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How can I find out what motherboard is in my computer?

I want to find out the exact model of my computer's motherboard so that I can see what sort of memory chip, graphics cards and other components it supports. I'm using Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit.
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3answers
9k views

Installed RAM 20 GB (16 GB usable)

I have Windows 7 Home Premium (64 bit) OS installed. My motherboard is able to handle up to 32 GB of RAM. I recently upgraded my computer to 20 GB of RAM, but the computer says installed ...
41
votes
13answers
11k views

Is it safe to power on a motherboard outside of its case?

I have a new motherboard which needs a BIOS update to support a new CPU. Thankfully I have an old (compatible) CPU handy. My plan is to install the old CPU, update the BIOS, then install the new ...
35
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2answers
4k views

What is the brown slot near the CPU socket on a Pentium 1 motherboard, and what is it used for?

What is this slot called and what is it for on a Pentium 1 motherboard? Here I give you the Asus P/I-P55T2P4 rev 2.1 board:
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14answers
42k views

What happens when more RAM is installed than the motherboard supports?

I have a free RAM slot and some spare memory that will fit my computer. However the problem is my motherboard only supports 2GB and I have 2GB installed. What would happen if I plugged the spare ...
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2answers
3k views

When I hit DEL during start up, am I entering CMOS or BIOS?

For the longest time I assumed I was entering the BIOS setup and CMOS is a chip that holds the settings I set in BIOS in its memory. I recently read somewhere that when I am configuring the boot ...
25
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5answers
23k views

Any way to tell apart a CPU defect from a mainboard defect?

I have a fairly modern desktop computer, an AMD Athlon II X2 based silent PC, that does not work. When turned on, it will start physically (all fans are rotating, disks start up...) but not give a ...
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6answers
12k views

Why should I install hardware drivers if my computer is working fine?

I've just installed Windows 7 on my PC. I went online to look for drivers. For my motherboard, Foxconn offers LAN drivers, on-board audio drivers, and chipset drivers. And for my graphics card, ...
23
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3answers
7k views

What limits a motherboard from supporting more memory?

My specific question is with the ASUS M3N78-VM motherboard that my home server uses. I currently have 4x2GB installed for a total of 8GB but I was hoping to upgrade to say 16GB (4x4GB). The official ...
20
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4answers
2k views

Can I use two types of DDR3 in the same motherboard?

I have a DDR3 RAM of 1333MHz of 4GB on my motherboard (Asus H61M). I have another stick of RAM DDR3 1600 MHz of 4GB. Can I use this in the other slot along with the original to reach a combined 8GB? ...
20
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3answers
2k views

What do you call the place on a hard drive (or motherboard, or anywhere else) to place jumpers?

Most hard drives have a set of pins next to the pata or sata port to place jumpers to do things such as designating it a slave or master. What is the name of those set of other pins? Hard drives are a ...
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6answers
10k views

How to connect multiple HDDs to a computer?

What is the best and most efficient way to connect 10 - 20 SATA HDDs to a home computer? I mean an ordinary motherboard supporting 2 connections for SATA HDDs. The purpose of this assembly is to ...
15
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2answers
3k views

What does 'Max allocated RAM size' mean on this mobo?

I see in multiple webshops that this MSI Z87 G41 PC Mate mobo has an attribute called Max Allocated RAM Size: 1760 MB What does this mean? Can the motherbord handle maximum 1760MB memory in total, ...
14
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3answers
21k views

What do motherboard RAM slot colors mean?

I have always seen that the motherboard RAM slots are colored in pairs, but never knew what it meant. I just put the 2 RAM in, and after a few tries it always worked. But after I tried to install a ...
14
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6answers
3k views

What is the 6-pin power connector on an HP ProDesk?

I have an HP ProDesk 600 G1 desktop PC, and I'm upgrading it with a new graphics card and a new power supply. Now, the problem I'm having is that the motherboard in the PC doesn't have a standard ...
14
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3answers
13k views

Can't boot flash drive on GIGABYTE motherboard

Situation When I try to boot from my flash drive, my GIGABYTE 970A-UD3 motherboard returns this: Loading Operating System ... Boot error All other motherboards I've tried support booting from that ...
13
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7answers
14k views

Onboard RAID vs Software RAID

My motherboard, an Asus M4a79t Deluxe, advertises RAID 0/1/5 capabilities. My limited understanding is that onboard RAID is better than software RAID. Is this necessarily true? Is an onboard RAID ...
13
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6answers
16k views

Fitting a Motherboard into a Computer Case

I'm interested in building my own computer. I saw a motherboard and CPU that I want to buy from Tiger Direct. My question is has to do with computer cases and motherboards. Are all motherboards ...
12
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6answers
29k views

How does Motherboard and CPU affect RAM choice?

I am seeking advice on which memory to use with my motherboard and CPU. Below are my components and some relevant information extracted from their official websites. NOTE: Although this is a very ...
12
votes
3answers
635 views

Motherboard went up in flames

I just recently purchased the ECS A55F2-M3, FM2 Motherboard. I have a couple pictures to show you: I think it is a voltage regulator that had went up in flames. My questions are: What caused ...
12
votes
1answer
668 views

What does + in the memory type of DDR4 RAM mean?

Some mainboard producers add a + to the specification of supported memory types (e.g. for ASRock X99 Extreme 3 supports DDR4-3000+). Does DDR4-3000+ somehow differ from DDR4-3000? The wikipedia ...
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4answers
6k views

PC shutting down after 30 minutes, even when on BIOS screen

I have a desktop PC that is just over a year old that I use daily for work. It's running Windows 8.1, has 16GB RAM and an i7 CPU. It has a 256GB Samsung 840 SSD (Windows + programs) along with a 1TB ...
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2answers
6k views

Why does RAM need to be installed in pairs?

Why does RAM need to be installed in pairs? What's the reason behind this?
11
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1answer
1k views

Motherboard and chipset specifications disagree on memory support. Which to believe?

I'd like to upgrade my ancient Super Micro SuperServer 6024H-i with a little more memory. Its motherboard manual specifies support for DDR-233/300 memory only. However, it is equipped with an Intel ...
11
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2answers
76k views

What is “C1E support” on my AMD CPU?

I'm building a new computer and have found in the bios the following options on the "CPU Feature" screen: AMD Cool'n'Quiet C1E Support SVM Support I understand what "Cool'n'Quiet", and "SVM ...
11
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1answer
5k views

What's the difference between SATA and SATA-II (3.0 GB)?

What's the difference between SATA and SATA-II (3.0 GB)? Specifically, if I'm shopping for a new (budget, so not new-new) motherboard, do I need to take into consideration if it supports SATA-II? ...
11
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2answers
1k views

Laptop that only boots after being placed in the freezer once all power is depleted?

Not an April Fools Day joke!* I have a Lenovo T500 that will not boot once it looses complete power (battery depleted & AC power loss). The odd thing about the whole issue is that if I place the ...
10
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2answers
2k views

My motherboard has 2 ram slots . Why does CPU-Z and Speccy show that I have 4 slots?

My motherboard has 2 ram slots . Why does CPU-Z and Speccy show that I have 4 slots ? Gigabyte GA G41 MT S2P
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2answers
840 views

Building my own computer [closed]

I'm planning to build my own computer. I do not have enough cash to buy all components I need in one go. I want to ask, if I buy motherboard which is compatible with i7 processor (any) and compatible ...
10
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3answers
15k views

How to wire the LPT and COM port headers on a motherboard?

I would like to add an LPT and a COM port to my computer. The board has no LPT or COM port on the I/O panel on the back. However, there are LPT and COM port headers on the board. You can see these ...
10
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2answers
427 views

How can I re-program/flash a backup of the bios?

I have some computers that have a particular bios setting that keeps everything running smoothly. The setting is not the default setting for the motherboard. So, when the CMOS battery dies, the ...
9
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2answers
4k views

Will 8GB RAM stick work if my motherboard has limit of 16GB (for 4 slots)?

This one is quite tricky and I can't find any decent information source/documentation. I have Gigabyte motherboard from 2008: Gigabyte MA770T-UD3P rev. 1.0. It has 4 RAM slots and total limit of ...
9
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4answers
14k views

How can I get my 64-bit computer to recognize all of my RAM

I've recently upgraded my system from 6GB of RAM to 12GB. Once I installed the new RAM, Windows 7 shows in my System Information that I have "12.0 GB installed (7.99 GB usable)". Although less common, ...
9
votes
5answers
10k views

Should I get integrated graphics if I already have a dedicated GPU?

I want to upgrade my computer to the new Sandy Bridge CPU's, which features integrated graphics. However, you have to choose between two types of chipsets: H67 or P67. Now since I already own a ...
9
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2answers
10k views

Can I use faster DDR3 RAM than my motherboard allows?

My motherboard states it supports DDR3 1066/1333. Can I purchase DDR3 1600 and expect my system to drop it down to the highest level the motherboard supports? Will this change the Cas Latency or ...
9
votes
1answer
299 views

How can I replace a broken M.2 SSD mounting standoff for my motherboard?

I just bought an ASUS Z97M Plus motherboard. It has an M.2 socket. Here's a pic of the socket: I want to install this M.2 SATA drive: The drive is held in the socket by a screw in a standoff, ...
8
votes
2answers
17k views

Is a DDR3 MB compatible with DDR2 RAM?

If a motherboard's specifications say it supports DDR3 SDRAM sticks, would I be correct to assume it is also compatible with DDR2 RAM? Am I wrong, or does it depend on the motherboard?
8
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3answers
416 views

It is safe to keep the glue residues on the motherboard that had a backplate

This might seem a stupid question but i just want to be sure. Some cooler have a backplate with sticky (really sticky!) edge on back of them in order to stick it on the motherboard. I removed mine ...
8
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2answers
285 views

Computer Shuts Down, BSOD, Aggravation

---BOUNTY & EDIT--- Ok, here is the latest update, and attached a bounty! So I ran all of my ram sticks 1 at a time for around 24 hours each. None of them caused a BSOD. I ran test on all of ...
8
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1answer
1k views

How to measure actual USB3 port speed?

Not all USB3 ports are created equal. I have a friend who develops embedded hardware that interfaces with USB chipsets. He told me that most USB chipsets that are slightly faster than USB2 (480 ...
8
votes
1answer
720 views

SMD transistor on motherboard is blown after a big spark; case fan no longer works

So I installed a new fan and upon turning on the computer there was a huge spark with loud bang. Everything stopped working until I unplugged power from motherboard. Now upon boot, computer says one ...
7
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2answers
1k views

After Intel's admission, should Sandy Bridge processors be used?

I'm planning on getting a custom desktop PC assembled. I had planned on an Intel i5-2400 (Sandy bridge) processor in tandem with an Asus p8h67mle motherboard. After Intel's admission of a ...
7
votes
3answers
12k views

CPU temp very hot in BIOS but okay in RealTemp/Speedfan

I just built myself a new i7 2600k system with an Intel DP67BA motherboard. Booted into BIOS and was alarmed to find Processor temp reported at 75 C, and steadily rising... sat there while it rose to ...
7
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5answers
1k views

My power supply/motherboard nightmare

Last summer I bought a broken power supply (without knowing of course) and put it in my computer. Turning my box on made one of my cheaper HDDs catch fire (I believe a capacitor or resistor blew) and ...
7
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1answer
8k views

How to disable power to the mouse and keyboard after shutdown?

After my computer shuts down, I still have the power to the keyboard and mouse. This causes both the keyboard and mouse to have lights that remain lit while the system is off. How do I change this, so ...
7
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2answers
2k views

RAM not usable?

I just upgraded my RAM today by adding 2 x 4GB 1333MHz DDR3 sticks on top of my 2 x 2GB 1333MHz DDR3 RAM, making a total of 12GB of RAM. For some reason before the 4GB was all usable, but when I ...
7
votes
1answer
437 views

I have a 3.3 Volt PCI ethernet card working on a 5 Volt PCI slot. How is it possible?

This is the design for PCI slots: As you can see, there are 32/64 bits and 3.3/5 Volts. For what I know: 32 bits PCI cards can work in 64 bits slots of the same voltage. 64 bits PCI cards ...
7
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4answers
12k views

Can you re-install Windows 7 OEM on a new motherboard?

I want to buy a copy of Windows 7 OEM for my PC so I can run Adobe Premiere on a 64 bit OS. However, there seems to be a problem with OEM copies as some people say that once you install them you can't ...
7
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4answers
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How can I set Windows 7 up to use three monitors?

I want to set my computer up to use three monitors. Currently I have two monitors working fine. I'm using an ASRock K10N78 AM2+/AM2 NVIDIA GeForce 8200 ATX AMD Motherboard and an XFX PVT98GYDLU ...
7
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4answers
5k views

What desktop boards support VT-D or IOMMU? [closed]

I'm looking for a desktop board that supports either VT-D (Intel) or IOMMU (AMD) technology. This is the IO virtualization technology, not VT-x for CPU virtualization. I've found a list of chipsets ...