Not seen this before on my travels...

I have a Foxconn Winfast MCP61vm2ma-ers2h motherboard. It has 2gb of ram (2 Dimms, 1gb a piece), a 160GB seagate Barracuda and two SATA drives 400GB and 1.5TB).

I've just tried to add a 2GB dimm into the third bank. When I do, the POST fails to recognise the IDE hard disks anymore. The RAM is detected fine at POST.

and to get even more confusing, plugging in a standard DVD drive into the IDE channel and that works fine with or without the new 2GB Dimm.

I'm thinking BIOS on motherboard or Firmware on Harddisk....anybody have any thoughts?

  • 2
    you learn something new every day, eh? the shortest computer joke ever springs to mind: COMPATIBLE! :) sorry for not being helpful, but did you run memtest86+ already? – Molly7244 Nov 24 '09 at 23:57

I'd guess the problem to be one of:

  1. Insufficient power supply (The extra load of the RAM could cause power issues and weird problem like this)
  2. Bad memory. (Or possibly incorrectly timed, such that you're implicitly overclocking it)
  3. Hardware incompatibility
  4. BIOS incompatibility/bug

This is almost certainly not hard disk firmware. It's not impossible to imagine firmware bugs causing this behavior, but it wouldn't be easy -- from the point of view of detection the hard drive is basically a passive device and shouldn't care a whit how much RAM is in the system.

On the other hand, it's easy to imagine a BIOS bug where something like a lot of RAM in an extra bank would mess up initialization somehow causing it to fail to scan SATA buses.

I'd still go with #1 or #2. I'll echo Molly's comment here: try running memtest. It's likely that either #1 or #2 would cause memtest to fail in some way at some point.


Assuming you had [1] and [2] RAM modules and plugged in the [3]rd, try to remove [1] so now you have only [2][3].

If this helps, it can be a power issue/motherboard bug. If not, then [3] is likely damaged: memtest it.

To diferentiate 'power failure' and 'MB bug' insert all the three and try moving them around: [1][2][ ][3] and so on: it might work, and point to MB issue. Note that slots order may not be important, so this proves nothing, but gives you a chance :)


Isn't this motherboard supposed to max out at 1Gig modules? You mention using a 2Gig module. Please check your manual.


I think BlackBeagle may have it there, although the system does work when only the 2GB DIMM is in. Maybe just the mix of RAM is the problem. (ie. Not paired, CL5/CL6 mix), I'll probably take it back and get 2x1gb pair from the shop and report back progress.

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