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meerkt
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Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 10:38 am

I've encountered recently two Socket775 Gigabyte motherboards that power cycle after you save changed BIOS settings (edit: also after exiting without saving). It's a "feature" that I find quite annoying.
Both mobos are Intel 40-series chipset + Award BIOS.

Is this stupid behavior still happening with Gigabyte? Any other mobos that do it?
Last edited by meerkt on Sat Nov 19, 2016 2:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 10:51 am

Not sure what you mean. Are you saying that you need to manually power the board back up after saving BIOS settings? Or just that the fans spin down then back up, and the board goes through a full POST?

Either way, I don't see how it is much of an issue. If you just changed the BIOS settings you're physically sitting at the machine, and can just reach over and push the power button.
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meerkt
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:01 am

It power cycles by itself. Off, pause for 2-3 seconds, on.
It always makes me momentarily think "why did it power off? bad hardware?". I'd also rather not stop/start HDDs needlessly.

Anyway, I wonder which other Gigabyte or other mobos do it. I'd avoid them if I can.
Last edited by meerkt on Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:05 am

Motherboards have been doing this for a long time now. Some changes require a full power reset of the hardware for the changes to fully implement, thus the power cycle after Save and Restart. Stopping and starting HDD's is something the system will do even while it's running depending on your power savings settings.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:08 am

And again, unless you're changing your BIOS settings multiple times a day, how is this even remotely a problem? Seems like lack of this behavior would be way, way down on the list of features to look for when choosing a motherboard. Somewhere between whether they include a COM port breakout bracket in the box, and the color of the SATA connectors.
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meerkt
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:27 am

When experimenting I do restart every few minutes.

curtisb wrote:
Motherboards have been doing this for a long time now.

If your current Asus does it, who's the BIOS vendor?

Some changes require a full power reset of the hardware
Such as, and why?

The aforementioned Gigabytes do it on all changes, even "Saving" without changing anything. As a point of reference, there's no power cycling on a comparable Asus mobo I have; also Intel 40-series chipset, but AMI BIOS (grey background) rather than Award (blue). Also no such restarts on an AM2-era nForce 400-series MSI mobo with an Award BIOS (but strangely labeled AMI, I thought it was Phoenix who bought Award?).

Stopping and starting HDD's is something the system will do even while it's running depending on your power savings settings.
My HDDs only turn off when I explicitly tell them to do so, or on power off.

just brew it! wrote:
Seems like lack of this behavior would be way, way down on the list of features to look for when choosing a motherboard.
There's no lack of mobo makers, and they need to differentiate themselves. :) I just don't know how common/uncommon it is.
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:30 am

just brew it! wrote:
And again, unless you're changing your BIOS settings multiple times a day, how is this even remotely a problem? Seems like lack of this behavior would be way, way down on the list of features to look for when choosing a motherboard. Somewhere between whether they include a COM port breakout bracket in the box, and the color of the SATA connectors.

But you can't break the color theme man. :lol: This reminds me of the occasional post that pops up about needing windows to leave more free ram. I just always have a hard time understanding the motivation. I've never heard anyone complain about something as small as starting and stopping the hard drive though. My advice is to relax a bit mang, these things are designed to handle their normal use. Just use em.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Mon Nov 07, 2016 6:48 pm

meerkt wrote:
curtisb wrote:
Motherboards have been doing this for a long time now.

If your current Asus does it, who's the BIOS vendor?


AMI, but the BIOS manufacturer doesn't matter on recent boards.

meerkt wrote:
curtisb wrote:
Some changes require a full power reset of the hardware
Such as, and why?

It varies from RAM voltage changes, CPU voltage changes, BCLK changes, change from Legacy BIOS to UEFI, change the SATA controller from SATA to RAID or AHCI, etc. There are a long list of reasons a power cycle may be required. They originally just warned you that you'd need to power off before the settings would take effect, but when people ignored that and started complaining that things didn't work right they started doing the power cycle for you. It's really not a big deal. If you're in the UEFI BIOS that much it should be something you just expect, and is better than having to remember having to do it yourself.

meerkt wrote:
The aforementioned Gigabytes do it on all changes, even "Saving" without changing anything. As a point of reference, there's no power cycling on a comparable Asus mobo I have;

See above. If you aren't making any changes then there's no reason to Save and Exit. Just exit and you'll avoid that power cycle. If you hit Save and Exit it's going to trigger the power cycle.

meerkt wrote:
curtisb wrote:
Stopping and starting HDD's is something the system will do even while it's running depending on your power savings settings.
My HDDs only turn off when I explicitly tell them to do so, or on power off.

You'll actually wear out the hard drives faster leaving them spinning all the time instead of letting them spin down when not in use. People smarter than us engineered these things to operate in just that way.

meerkt wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Seems like lack of this behavior would be way, way down on the list of features to look for when choosing a motherboard.
There's no lack of mobo makers, and they need to differentiate themselves. :) I just don't know how common/uncommon it is.

It's quite common these days. I've come to be more surprised when it doesn't happen than when it does these days.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Mon Nov 07, 2016 7:56 pm

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meerkt
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Sat Nov 12, 2016 4:10 pm

Interesting. But why would this need physically turning off?

I should qualify. The Gigabyte does unnecessary power cycling. Usually also after "Exit without saving".
An Asus mobo (same G41 chipset as the Gigabyte) apparently does do some cycling, but not after trivial changes.

So, anyone knows mobos/manufacturers that cycle without need?
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:18 pm

meerkt wrote:
Interesting. But why would this need physically turning off?

I should qualify. The Gigabyte does unnecessary power cycling. Usually also after "Exit without saving".
An Asus mobo (same G41 chipset as the Gigabyte) apparently does do some cycling, but not after trivial changes.

So, anyone knows mobos/manufacturers that cycle without need?

I've had many gigabyte boards over the years and only settings that affect the POST issue a full power cycle. Smaller impact settings are generally a soft reboot, at least on the boards I've used in the past decade or so.

P35 and newer chipsets though, and generally the "enthusiast" boards.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:25 pm

"Unnecessary" power cycling is likely just a matter of laziness. Rather than having to track which BIOS settings need it and which ones don't, it is much easier (and less error-prone) to simply always power cycle (forcing a full POST), to ensure that the new settings are always applied properly.

Given the complexity of modern hardware, chipset variations, NDAs which may affect release of detailed chipset documentation, etc., the engineer doing the BIOS mods may not even know which settings require a power cycle, which leads to a "better safe than sorry" sledgehammer approach.

Edit: I should also add that I've not been terribly impressed with Gigabyte in general. After getting burned by QA issues and poor design choices on multiple brands over the years, I've become a bit of an ASUS fanboy. They're by no means perfect either, but they seem to have given me the least grief.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:55 pm

If you changed anything that low, it should do a full cycle. Simple reboots often skip certain parts of the POST cycle that load these values.

I like this feature, it tells me someone with a realistic approach to the real world designed the firmware.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:50 pm

The two Gigabyte boards I saw it on were G41 and P43. Maybe a bug in their 4x series?

Anyway, in case it's needed I'd still appreciate a warning plus confirmation before it happens.
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:54 pm

meerkt wrote:
The two Gigabyte boards I saw it on were G41 and P43. Maybe a bug in their 4x series?

Anyway, in case it's needed I'd still appreciate a warning plus confirmation before it happens.

Most BIOSes already make you confirm the save of the new settings and exit from the BIOS. Not sure what an extra confirmation gains, other than the annoyance of having to answer an extra confirmation every time you exit the BIOS?
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:07 pm

Right. Well, I guess it could just visibly indicate somewhere that it's going to power cycle on Save & Exit.
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:16 pm

Yeah, having the dialog say something like "Save and power cycle? Enter to confirm, Esc to cancel" (or something similar) would make sense.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:25 pm

Poke in the dark-
Could it have something to do with most Gigabyte boards having TWO bios chips????????
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:32 pm

HERETIC wrote:
Poke in the dark-
Could it have something to do with most Gigabyte boards having TWO bios chips????????


It's unlikely. You're not actually writing to the BIOS/UEFI. The BIOS/UEFI settings are stored into a piece of RAM (aka CMOS or BIOS memory) inside the PCH (southbridge).

So there'd be no reason to modify the second firmware for just settings changes.

That being said, BIOS/UEFI updates can also go through multiple power cycles and even multiple update stages.

I'd also note I've owned both Asus and Gigabyte boards that engage in all the aforementioned behavior.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:41 pm

Asus boards that power cycle after "Exit without saving"?
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 16, 2016 10:05 pm

meerkt wrote:
Asus boards that power cycle after "Exit without saving"?

Can't speak for Ryu, but I've had exactly one Asus board that appeared to do that; most have not. But I'm still stuck back in the AM3+ era for the most part, so I have not dealt much with modern Intel systems, or systems using DDR4. If it's a memory training issue, DDR4 could be a factor.

Edit: I see that two of the boards where you've experienced it were older ones, so never mind... maybe it's a common issue with Intel boards from that era?

Edit 2: Hmm... the one Asus board (an AMD one) where I saw that behavior was from around that era as well. For whatever that's worth.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Thu Nov 17, 2016 12:47 am

I've seen this on multiple boards, from ASRock, ASUS and Gigabyte.

The only logical thing I can come up with on the more modern stuff is XMP and Multi-Core Turbo.

If I leave my 3770K at stock and manually set my RAM timings to mimic the XMP profile, I get a full power cycle when I save and exit, then I can come back into the UEFI, discard and exit with no power cycle.

If I enable 'auto' in Core Ratio, or turn on an XMP profile, it'll power cycle every time. Seems to need to either reset the core clocks, or reset the timings, every time.

Purely anecdotal of course, board sample size = four (X79 Sabertooth, Fatality Z77 Professional, Z77MX-QUO-AOS, GA-Z77X-UD3)

I have no idea if what you're seeing is the same, given the vintage.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Thu Nov 17, 2016 5:04 am

Ryu Connor wrote:
HERETIC wrote:
Poke in the dark-
Could it have something to do with most Gigabyte boards having TWO bios chips????????


It's unlikely.  You're not actually writing to the BIOS/UEFI.  The BIOS/UEFI settings are stored into a piece of RAM (aka CMOS or BIOS memory) inside the PCH (southbridge).

So there'd be no reason to modify the second firmware for just settings changes.

That being said, BIOS/UEFI updates can also go through multiple power cycles and even multiple update stages.

I'd also note I've owned both Asus and Gigabyte boards that engage in all the aforementioned behavior.

Thanks for that-I always thought that changes made in the bios were written on the bios chip.
I wonder if that means that poor 3v battery has to keep parts of the southbridge powered as well as the bios chip when disconnected?
 
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Thu Nov 17, 2016 8:39 am

I can't think of a single mainboard in the last 25 years that did not do a full post after changing bios settings...

Some of the workstation and server main boards are even worse forcing you to go through the whole 5 minute loading firmware stage no matter what you changed.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:18 am

HERETIC wrote:
Thanks for that-I always thought that changes made in the bios were written on the bios chip.
I wonder if that means that poor 3v battery has to keep parts of the southbridge powered as well as the bios chip when disconnected?

The BIOS *code* is stored in flash, which does not need to be powered when the system isn't running.

Yes, parts of the southbridge are always powered. Not only are the BIOS settings stored there (in a small block of RAM); that's also where the time and date are maintained when the OS isn't running (so there's a little clock/calendar circuit in there that is always on).

Aranarth wrote:
I can't think of a single mainboard in the last 25 years that did not do a full post after changing bios settings...

He seemed to referring to boards that actually power cycle themselves, with all of the fans, HDDs, etc. spinning down for a few seconds, then coming back on again. As I already noted, I've only seen this on one board (so far).

Aranarth wrote:
Some of the workstation and server main boards are even worse forcing you to go through the whole 5 minute loading firmware stage no matter what you changed.

We have some servers at work that appear to POST twice on any hard reset or power cycle, even if nothing has changed. And if you *do* try to get into the BIOS, they POST *again* before giving you the BIOS menu. Very annoying.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Thu Nov 17, 2016 10:17 am

HERETIC wrote:
Thanks for that-I always thought that changes made in the bios were written on the bios chip.
I wonder if that means that poor 3v battery has to keep parts of the southbridge powered as well as the bios chip when disconnected?


Aye. As JBI has already noted, the Lithium CR2032 3.3v battery on our motherboards provides a power feed to the PCH (southbridge) to maintain the BIOS settings and the time/date.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 23, 2016 12:10 pm

just brew it! wrote:
Edit: I should also add that I've not been terribly impressed with Gigabyte in general. After getting burned by QA issues and poor design choices on multiple brands over the years, I've become a bit of an ASUS fanboy. They're by no means perfect either, but they seem to have given me the least grief.

Any hints on dealing with their QA? One of the RAM slots on my Z97 recently died (any DIMM put in that slot leads to lots of memory errors) after swapping the CPU AIO watercooler. I put in a support ticket with them, and it took 4 days for them to respond, telling me to run through the standard testing practices (Update BIOS, verify memory sticks one at a time, etc.) which I had already done and noted. Responded to that, and it's been 3 days and I haven't heard anything back.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 23, 2016 12:24 pm

emorgoch wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
Edit: I should also add that I've not been terribly impressed with Gigabyte in general. After getting burned by QA issues and poor design choices on multiple brands over the years, I've become a bit of an ASUS fanboy. They're by no means perfect either, but they seem to have given me the least grief.

Any hints on dealing with their QA? One of the RAM slots on my Z97 recently died (any DIMM put in that slot leads to lots of memory errors) after swapping the CPU AIO watercooler. I put in a support ticket with them, and it took 4 days for them to respond, telling me to run through the standard testing practices (Update BIOS, verify memory sticks one at a time, etc.) which I had already done and noted. Responded to that, and it's been 3 days and I haven't heard anything back.


My experience with Gigabyte is that they are slow, but always respond.

I have had no issues with the RMA experience.

My experience with Asus is that they too can be slow, but do respond.

I have had very negative experiences with the RMA process.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 23, 2016 12:28 pm

My goal (and one of the reasons I tend to stick with ASUS these days) is to never need to deal with customer support; they pretty much all suck in this regard, in various ways (ASUS included). If you get to the point of needing to contact the mobo vendor with an issue that can't be solved by a few minutes of Googling and/or a BIOS flash (or an RMA to Newegg), it's already a fail.
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Re: Mobos that power cycle after changing BIOS settings

Wed Nov 30, 2016 11:03 am

Well, in the end, it's only taken me about 3 weeks of back and forth for them to issue me an RMA. I wouldn't mind it if there was actually something functional done during that time, but for the first 2 weeks, there wasn't any additional information sent that wasn't included in my first contact.

Now I get to tear my system apart to send them the motherboard, and be stuck offline for however long it takes....
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