VOGONS


First post, by gottspeed

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So, I've got the bios flash voltage jumper set to 12V, but when Award flash memory writer goes to clear the chip, it throws an "Erase Chip Fail!". It does this same thing regardless of how I have the jumper set.

Has anyone run across this on an old board before? Do these things fail? This board is starting to get on my nerves... I have a GA-586VX coming to replace it, but I still want to get this done, I can't let this board conquer me.

Reply 1 of 12, by Rodoko

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That is due to the type of flash memory used in the era, you see there are two types of BIOS flash memory, EPROM (which your board has) and EEPROM

EPROM requires a UV light in order to erase it and EEPROM is reprogrammable (aka when you update the BIOS, the old one gets erased and the new one is written)

Reply 2 of 12, by PTherapist

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Is this the same M507 motherboard from your other post?

I've read the contents of the BIOS chip from my M507 board in a programmer quite recently, though I haven't been able to determine exactly what type of chip it is as a Google search of the writing on the chip brings up nothing. As such I haven't been able to erase or write anything to it.

It's certainly not a UV eraseable EPROM as suggested above, but it could very well be a one-time programmable ROM chip and as such you'd need to order a replacement programmable DIP32 1M chip & an external programmer to upgrade the BIOS. I myself am currently waiting on an Atmel 29C010 that I've ordered from China, as that particular chip is referenced as compatible here: http://th2chips.freeservers.com/m507/bios/index.html

I did try a UV eraseable EPROM chip as a potential replacement - an ST Microelectronics M27C2001. But the board wouldn't POST at all with that chip, hence why I ordered the Atmel instead.

Reply 3 of 12, by Deksor

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Someone pointed a way to identify those chips using a generic parameter that should give back a code, and that code should be listed in some forum post and say which chip this is. I bookmarked it, so give me time to find it.

Reply 5 of 12, by PTherapist

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Deksor wrote:

Thanks for finding the link. But I'm still none the wiser on how to find out what kind of chip it is. None of the markings on the chip bring up anything in search results and I have no idea what you mean by "using a generic parameter".

Reply 6 of 12, by Deksor

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In my TL866 interface, I select a chip that was commonly used (like W29C010 for example), then I disable "pin detect" and "check ID" and finally I do "device > read ID". This displays a 4 digit code which is the ROM's ID which you can then look in there.

In my case it was 0B E1. Unfortunately it leads to nothing in that case, but sometimes you get lucky (I got lucky with a M537).

Reply 7 of 12, by appiah4

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I've had a similar issue with another PCChips board and only UNIFLASH managed to flash it. Give it a try.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 8 of 12, by gottspeed

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Yes, it is an M507.

Thanks very much for the responses gents, I was out of town for a bit and couldn't reply.

I'm going to start with the alternative flashing software that was mentioned and then move on to other flash chip options.

You guys are great, I'll report back with any success.

Reply 9 of 12, by appleg33k85

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Wondering if anyone was able to get this chip to update, every flashing utility I've tired doesn't want to do it.

I'm thinking that a new ROM will need to be ordered but I'm not sure what I should get? I've attached a photo of the current one.

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Reply 10 of 12, by PTherapist

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appleg33k85 wrote on 2020-08-02, 04:09:

Wondering if anyone was able to get this chip to update, every flashing utility I've tired doesn't want to do it.

I'm thinking that a new ROM will need to be ordered but I'm not sure what I should get? I've attached a photo of the current one.

I got an Atmel 29C010 and wrote the newer BIOS to that with my MiniPro. Works great.

Reply 11 of 12, by appleg33k85

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PTherapist wrote on 2020-08-02, 05:37:
appleg33k85 wrote on 2020-08-02, 04:09:

Wondering if anyone was able to get this chip to update, every flashing utility I've tired doesn't want to do it.

I'm thinking that a new ROM will need to be ordered but I'm not sure what I should get? I've attached a photo of the current one.

I got an Atmel 29C010 and wrote the newer BIOS to that with my MiniPro. Works great.

Awesome, did you end up using the 2A59CF59 or the F59_MOD bios?