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Have a MB Question - re VERY Old Thread here!

Jessi3809

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#1
Hi all -

I found this board back in 2006 and 2007 and didn't return until about 3 weeks ago. Someone here with ID Mr. G helped me and a bunch of people with a MoBo flash, mine worked perfectly but as mentioned it's been a long time since I was here and also flashed my board.

Here is the original thread that helped me: https://www.techpowerup.com/forums/threads/gateway-owners-c51gu01-motherboard.30405/

I have a Gateway GM-5052 system that has been running great for years and is connected to a HD TV. When I came here I was changing the system over to RAID and couldn't see all the optioned in the BIOS - Gateway evidently had them hidden and for weeks I and a bunch of guys on the eBay Discussion forum tried to make the system RAID. I would send them screen shots of my BIOS and they kept saying I should have an "enable RAID" there, which I didn't (for a while I thought I was losing it!). Then someone came along with a link to this board and Mr. G's posts re the BIOS flashing on a FoxConn C51GU01 Mother Board, which is what I have in the system. I downloaded the flash, it took perfectly, and I bought two 1-TB SATA HDs. The system came with Windows XP Media Center and I formatted that off and put on Windows 7 Ultimate, retail, with a RAID 0 stripped array. WORKED PERFECTLY until last month when I updated Windows!!!

The system crashed during one of the many reboots and I was no longer able to boot it properly. I managed to get into it and backed up my data using Safe Mode and then I nuked the system. That DID IT! I've been on the floor with this system for 3 weeks trying to get Windows 7 Ultimate back on with a RAID 0 stripped array. It will not install and I'm receiving MBR errors, No OS found errors, and BAD DISK errors.

For 3 weeks this is SOME of what I've tried that did not work:

Booting to Windows 7 disc
Booting to Windows 7 ISO disc
Booting to the flash file again (thought maybe I could "re-flash" the BIOS?)
Booting to the original XP Media Center discs (system wanted no part of those as board has changed)
Reseated all Memory
Checked all cables and replaced one power cable to one of the SATA HD'S that was bad
Removed the CMOS battery and booted system - made no difference
Booted into BIOS at least 20 times and changed settings in there to include "Optimized Defaults" - didn't work.
Broke up the RAID array and tried to boot to an IDE setup - didn't work and it was seeing only one HD for some reason
Changed boot order more times than I can remember
Tried to boot to my Windows 7 install with a USB flash drive - didn't work
Connected another DVD burner thinking there was something wrong with the one in the system
eMailed NVidia for Drivers that I don't need and received an email that my board does not support RAID under Windows 7 (I told them I had been running that for at least 4 years like that)
eMailed FoxConn who never got back to me


(There are a couple more things I tried but I honestly can't remember what I did). Nothing above worked to get me to where I could put Windows 7 back on the system that had been running perfectly until the update.

Today I looked for the same board on eBay thinking I could buy another board, Flash it with the file I still have from Mr. G but none come with the processor that are cheap and I'm not versed at all in processors or applying thermal paste. I just wanted to swap out the boards.

I was not able to get into Safe Mode at all - only F2 which takes me into the BIOS and F10 which opens the RAID Array (NVidia) that shows it's "Healthy" at 1TB.

Today, after deciding I'd just use the system without RAID (I really don't want to do that) I found backup discs from my late Mom's eMachine that came with Vista Home (32 bit............my GM is 64 bit). I eliminated the RAID array in the BIOS and booted with the Recovery Vista Disc and it INSTALLED perfectly.

I've just completed a full install of Vista Home 32bit on a GM Gateway 64bit system. For 3 weeks everything I tried that should have worked............DIDN'T and today what shouldn't have worked - DID. Only thing now is I've lost my RAID array.

I tried chkdsk in the CMD prompt to see if there was anything wrong with the HDs and that command won't work. Both HDs are showing up in Computer and are not partitioned.......both are the 1TB Maxtors showing up as "C" and "D".

QUESTION: Now that I am sure all hardware is fine how can I rebuilt the RAID Array and install my Windows 7 Ultimate back on the system? I just tried to created the array while in Vista and I got a "DISK FAILURE" error. Not sure if Vista supports RAID???

I really apologize for the length of this post but I wanted to put as much info here in hopes that someone can help me recreate my array with Windows 7. I use this system for multiple things once it's up and as mentioned I also use a 46" LCD HD TV as a monitor from across the room to work on this system.

Thanks so much and I really appreciate any input anyone can provide. Is Mr. G still around??

Regards,
Jessi
 

hat

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#2
So you're sure that both disks that you used in the RAID array before are good, and you can install Windows without using RAID? As soon as you try to use RAID the system borks, right?

My first recommendation is to just forget booting from RAID. You can get a new 128GB SSD for less than $50. That would be more than enough space for you to install your OS and programs on, and even a few games (if you're into that). And, to top it all off, the SSD will be significantly faster than your previous RAID array. And then, once you get Windows installed, you should be able to RAID your two hard drives from within Windows. I'm pretty sure Windows software RAID is available on all systems, regardless if your motherboard officially (or unofficially) supports RAID or not.

It will be a nice upgrade. Your system will fly with that SSD, and the performance of your RAID array will probably increase because it won't be being hammered by running an operating system on it. Of course, I must mention that system is ancient by today's standards, and you're gonna be held back by just about the entire system. Slow processor, small amount of slow RAM... but if high performance computing isn't a thing for you and you just want to get this system up and running, using an SSD for your Windows installation will be a good way to breathe some new life into your system and your RAID array will most likely work once you set it up from within Windows.
 
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#3
You need to boot to the RAID options usually F11 or something then delete both drives from the array...
During windows install completely format the drives.
If you want RAID again reboot to RAID option and setup a new array.

Install Windows and you should be good.
 

OneMoar

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#4
hes running vista on a older then dirt Athlon 5000+
its a miracle it even still turns on
 
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#5
hes running vista on a older then dirt Athlon 5000+
its a miracle it even still turns on
As long as it's not overheating and the Caps are still good it's still a good PC.
I would definitely replace the thermal paste... Even if its with the $.99
eBay stuff...
 

hat

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#6
hes running vista on a older then dirt Athlon 5000+
its a miracle it even still turns on
True it's old and crappy by our standards, but maybe he doesn't need high performance computing. His thread was just about getting RAID to work. If he made a thread saying his PC was crappy and slow and asking for help with that, then it'd be a different story. I can't advise people to spend money on things they don't even want or have a use for.
 

OneMoar

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#7
between that board and vista raid is likely not going to happen with any reliability

there is ZERO advantage to putting anouther dollar into that
 

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#8
I actually think it's a fair criticism, maybe the op hasn't realized how far behind the times this machine is. On the other hand if nothing better is needed then what hat suggested is spot on imo.
 

OneMoar

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#9
there is nothing you are going todo to that machine to make it live-able in 2017 I understand that not everybody has a million dollars but there comes a time when you just gotta 'throw the garbage out '

even a gen 2 core2 would be a big step up and thats saying something I had a 5000+ based rig i know what its a capable of
 

hat

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#10
I had a 5200+ back in the day and it was pretty good. Of course today with what I do it would be showing it's age, and badly... but that's because I require performance. In the end it's up to the OP if he wants to upgrade or not.
 

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#11
@Jessi3809 I'm afraid that the others are right: don't waste your time on this old computer. Unfixable problems after an update are a sign that it's time to give up on it. Also, running RAID on it is a bad idea from a data corruption standpoint, whichever mode you choose, due to its age.

The thing is really old and low performance and even if you don't have much money, buying or building a bottom end PC with the cheapest Intel or AMD CPU will be way ahead of this and will also run W10 and be fully supported in so many little ways that are very important when all put together.
 

Jessi3809

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#12
Hi all -

Thanks for all your replies, I really appreciate them and sorry I didn't respond earlier.

I've got the system running perfectly! One thing I like is a challenge and I had one with this one this time. This is not the only computer I have - I've got 3 old, expensive systems in my office, one eMachine I bought my late Mom about 5 years ago, the desktop in question, and two laptops (a Gateway 173XL FX and a Toshiba Qosmio x500-900s). I needed that system up because it's attached to a HD TV where I plan to toast my cable company and go with a stick for TV.......just get internet from somebody cheaper. These triple packages are ridiculous and I'm tired of watching commercials.

Anyway, I decided against the array and broke it up. Ran a format on both drives which took about 26 hours and both are fine. I tried several DVD copies I made of the original disc I had and none worked until I found the "original" DVD that was unmarked. Also, and I have no idea why this was happening, but the first boot device in the system kept defaulting to one of the hard drives - it wasn't seeing the disc at all.

I've got a Nero suite and tried an ISO, tried a bootable ISO, tried copying the disc with Nero (I was copying a bad disc all the time). I stumbled on the good DVD and booted my Mom's eMachine just fine. Tried it in my two laptops and it booted fine so I tried it in the GM desktop and it installed Windows 7 Ultimate perfectly.

I've got SP1 burned to a DVD and put that on already and that's as far as I've gotten. Both HDs are partitioned into 500G pieces and I'm not going to use RAID at all - it's disabled in the BIOS. I even found a RAID controller and installed that but the discs I was using were all bad and the system wasn't seeing the ROM drive before the HDs. Once I straightened out the boot order and it finally STUCK and also found the right DVD Windows 7 installed without incident.

I know the system is old but because I have so many systems here - most are old but all contain parts that I'm sure someone would want on eBay (NVidia video cards, Creative Labs cards and drives, ZIP drives with discs, floppy drives, etc.) and until I get rid of all these towers that are huge and both laptops die on me buying something new is not an option. Also, I hate Windows 8 and 10 so I may jump to a Mac once I get rid of my entire office that's full of hardware, software, and a library that looks like a graphic's designer's heaven!

System is not online yet although 300mp wireless USB adapter is installed as are the wireless KB and mouse. I had to get away from it for a couple of days so I've been working outside but I want to get rid of my cable company so I'll be installing everything back onto that system shortly.

Thanks again, everyone, and I appreciate the comments about it being crappy but to me it runs great and serves its purpose - or will as soon as it's all reinstalled.

Thanks!