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Thread: PTP 225 misery

  1. #1
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    I have a PTP 225 with 1G Ram.

    For the last month I have been trying to troubleshoot "illegal instruction", "bus error", and a BLANK error message panel, boot-stops on start-up and restarts. Eventually, I would get a boot, but it wouldn't be long before I would get error 12's, mostly, and error 2's while using programs.

    I disconnected external SCSI chain, did clean reinstalls of 8.5 from Apple CD with no success. I also used Norton Utilities and Tech ToolPro 2 to run diagnostics, optimize drive, etc. Finally, after MANY restarts using Conflict Catcher 8, it told me I had more than one system folder which "Apple does not reccommend," and "Conflict Catcher cannot fix this problem." That befuddled me since I had trashed everything or moved it to the external hard drive which is in the closet. A search revealed no apparent additional system folder or system files. I wondered if it had become hidden somehow, so drastic measures were needed.

    I finally bit the bullet, and erased the drive. I reinstalled 8.5 from Apple CD, anxious to rebuild the system from scratch.

    When I restarted first time, the Mac OS splash panel came up and then a BLANK error message panel appeared across it and the boot stopped.

    What the hell is going on?

    Is this something about ROM, like I know a lot about that? I did a ROM test with TTP2 and everything checked out..also RAM test checked OK. Is it possible that I have to rebuild system from original 7.6 CD because it has specific system info not on Apple disks?

    HELP!!!!!!!

  2. #2
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    were you running the same 1gig of ram for while BEFORE you had these problems? Did you make ANY changes recently that you can think of that might have caused this problem?

  3. #3
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    tm311's questions are good ones............

    Did you put new drivers on the disk(s) when you re-formatted them?

    You running the stock 604e processor or an upgrade?

    Try running the machine with a couple of matched sticks of RAM that you are sure were purchased at the same time. Do this at least twice. If your problem clears up, it's flaky memory. In which case, continue to to check matched sets until you flush out a flaky set, than pull one stick and test the other, etc.... Check all 4 sets, even if you find one bad stick early on.

    Unfortunately, memory can pass a memory test, and still act up. Not super common, but it does happen more than you'd like to believe.

    Cheap memory is not just inexpensive. Good memory has a lifetime warranty. Yes, that IS a shameless plug for ACME memory sticks.

    Regards,

    c8

    [This message has been edited by crazyeights (edited 03 February 2002).]

  4. #4
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    Very good.

    I did not reinstall the drivers after reformatting. I assumed Norton or TechTool would necessarily preserve the driver that existed at the time. I guess I could go back to the original Power Computing CD and reload FWB. I had been using the APS PowerTools 6.4.3 after buying one of their drives. I am running the stock 604e processor.

    I did do the 1G Ram install, (I installed the extra ram in anticipation of getting an XLR8 SSE G4) but, my wife, who was using the machine at her office said it had been "acting up" prior to that, after being a very stable machine for a long, long while. I don't know what was actually happening but she did say she was having to restart it often or that it would take several times to boot, so I was thinking it was the same problem I was dealing with.

    I chased the RAM thing all around....building slowly, mixing pairs , etc. It was lifetime warranty Acme ram that I bought in 2 separate buys...512 at a time, but, of two different manufacturers. It was all installed at the same time however. I went back to my 128 OEM ram and had same problem. After that, even, I installed 2 32's Apple OEM, with same result. At first install of the 1G, I was having problems with the interleaving, but, eventually got it all interleaved. There is one odd thing to me at least. The A2 & B2 banks show the 128M there as being 2x64 on the screen picture that TechTool 2 displayed while the rest show 128...doesn't matter which make stick is in there. Made me wonder.

  5. #5
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    Is the battery needing to be replaced?

  6. #6
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    No....replaced battery when I opened case for ram install. Unless battery was bad off the shelf, which it shouldn't have been, it should be OK.

  7. #7
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    I have misrepresented myself and Gurus.

    I did not realize that ACME memory was a real part of MacGurus...only thought of it as generic reference to remanufactured sticks or pulled ram for resale. The 1 G ram I was referring to was purchased from OWC, but did have lifetime warranty.

  8. #8
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    I keep replying to myself, so is this the END?

    I did a low-level reformat with original FWB software, so disk should be squeaky clean. Disk mounted with 2G and 13MB partitions. I updated drivers per same FWB disk which was a success, so it said. On restart, got same blank error message panel over Mac OS splash panel.

    ??????????????????????????????????????

  9. #9
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    Just a thought, did you reset the "CUDA" button after each install? Supposedly one doesn't have to when working with RAM, but if your commputer isn't properly recognizing your RAM, perhaps a cuda reset is in order.

    I would also zap the PRAM after that if it still acted up.

    Won't hurt to try it!

    Your "cuda" switch is a small red button on the bottom right corner of your motherboard. after pwering down, press cuda button for 13 seconds, (seems to be the lucky number of seconds for most, some hold for 30 seconds. Use an orange stick or simililar wooden device to fully depress button.).

    Power up and zap your PRAM by restarting and holding down your "P" and "R" keys, after three start-up chimes, release keys and allow to power up fully.

    This might straighten out you problem, the "cuda" switch will cause your computer to look for everything physical installed, the PRAM zap will purge your ROM & battery memory. You will have to reset your system clocks and other system settings.

    Also consider formatting your drives with Hard drive disk tools offered on this site. I have even reformatted my old narrow 9"X 5.25" X 3.5" drives with it and had them come back from being unstable. Original FWB is too old for 8.5 and APS I've never heard of.

    [This message has been edited by tekcan (edited 06 February 2002).]

  10. #10
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    Thanks tekcan:

    I f you mean cuda reset after each RAM install...yes. I'll pay attention to to length of reset, although I'm pretty sure I held down for at least 13 seconds because I seem to remember such advice from earlier days with bad logic board on Performa. I was not using a wooden utensil, though, so maybe I did not depress fully.

    Is this the order? 1)reset CUDA 2)restart and zap PRAM 3)reformat 4)reinstall sytem

    Also, are the format tools on site free downloads, or just commercial download products such as Intech?

  11. #11
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    The Hard disk tools are not free I'm afraid, but well worth the price since they have lifetime free updates.

    You have the order right,
    "Is this the order? 1)reset CUDA 2)restart and zap PRAM 3)reformat 4)reinstall sytem"

    except 2) Power up and check out how it's working, then restart and zap PRAM. I feel one should always check out one reset before trying the other to pinpoint any changes before adding another change.

    Try out your system before reformatting your drives, your problems may have well cleared up. Also you just might attempt a clean install of the system software before reformatting.

    A good test would also be to reformat with FWB, Install 7.6 and see if you run stable. This would tell you whether it's the system software or a hardware problem. If you need to be at 8 or above you really need a good third party hard drive formatting software, hence the recommend of Hard Disk speed tools.

    Good luck and let me know how it goes....

  12. #12
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    jmikey,

    I'm with crazyeights...the problem I had like that was a bad L2 cache or I overclocked the processor. Your wife said it was acting flakey before the RAM upgrade....

    Buy a cheap G3 upgrade and see what happens..

    Is it the stock 604e?

    Mark

  13. #13
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    Did you try this computer out booted off of a CD? Might be revealing.
    Rick

  14. #14
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    That L2 stuff is scary...don't know much about it at all except that it was big engineering deal when Power Computing devined it.

    I have finally gotten machine reasonably stable...it's now running 8.5. I reformatted and installed new drivers from APS PowerTools disk I' ve had for a while, since they were much newer than FWB drivers that came with original system..that's a whole new story ...the first program I loaded was Stuffit Deluxe so I could rejoin segmented files I loaded on floppies so I could install APS drivers downloaded on an iMac.

    There is still something squirrley, however. There seems to be some trouble with the CD operation...sometimes CD's mount and sometimes they don't. At the start of all this over a month ago, I even took the CD out because I was not able to get it to respond at all....dead in the water. I tinkered with it out of desperation and stuck it back in and got it to respond finally. I even noticed today that Apple System Profiler recognized the CD as a "hard drive" at least once today. Also on start up, the system AV starts at either 31Mhz/60Hz OR 35Mhz/67Hz...no rhyme or reason about why. It usually resets to 58Mhz/72Hz by the end of the boot, though. It still has the originalTwinTurbo 128/M8...the monitor is a 19" RasterOps. If it doesn't reset to 58/72, it's garish looking at 640x480 on a 19" monitor.

    It's looking reasonably optimistic now...the only caveat is, I uninstalled the 1G ram and put 2 32M sticks in for the interim. When I receive new ram replacement, that should tell us something.

    BTW, ricks, I have almost always been able to force boot from CD during whole episode AND drallen, I am running 604e. I'm wanting XLR8 G4 SSE when I feel system is sound.

    [This message has been edited by jmikey (edited 07 February 2002).]

  15. #15
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    jm,
    If the computer is stable and 'sweet' while running off the CD-Rom that would suggest either a hard drive /bus problem or simple software problems in your system.

    Are you absolutely certain that you have the hard drive bus properly terminated? No drive should have term power enabled and only the last physical drive on the data cable should have a term enable jumper.

    No ID conflicts? From Apple system profiler you should see no identical IDs on identical bus.

    If the problems keep up with the IX card might be getting on time to ex it. The PTP has no other Video out to try does it? Don't think so. Be nice to see if that's the bug.

    Hope you don't take offense at my asking about things you already know, Ya never know what might cause a brain fart that solves it.

    Rick

    [This message has been edited by ricks (edited 07 February 2002).]

  16. #16
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    I have suspected a hardware problem since symptoms seem to be so deep-seated. I've postulated that Turbo card may be retaining some element of boot in its ram...if that's possible. I started with this problem on Gurus forum as a VIDEO problem...no video after installing new ram. Per recommendations from others who had similar, I moved TT card to different slot ,etc.,and tried everything. The recurring problems were "bus errors" and "illegal instructions" on boot.

    On that line I meant to P.S. my last post to say that APS Tools 6.0.1 SCSI ID panel displays on boot on the 35Mhz/67Khz and then the APSTools 6.4.4 panel displays when the video sets to desired 58Mhz/72KHz. Using every search asset available, I cannot find any "APS 6.0.1" element to trash.

    One of the bits of advice offered originally was to check terminations on internal devices...which I did...and they all checked out. I further checked external SCSI chain to make sure of terminations and ID's, and they checked OK. Lately, for troubleshooting, the external SCSI has been undone. I checked identical machine of a friend's to make sure cabling was OK and it looked identical to mine. I only opened my box all the way to repair CD a long while back, but it had been very stable for many months after that.

    As Manuel says in "Fawlty Towers"..."I know noooothing", so, I'm not in any way offended by well-intentioned advice.

  17. #17
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    What brand is your CD-ROM drive, if I might ask?

  18. #18
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    It's the original Teac 16-X .....516S -CD I think is the model #.

    The machine is still stable as I speak from hard drive boot. I e-mailed APS about install of 6.4.4 over 6.0.1 not getting rid of 6.0.1 SCSI ID panel during early part of the boot, but have not heard back.

  19. #19
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    jmikey...

    You mention FWB drivers from the ORIGINAL PowerComputing boot CD...with OS 8.0 on it? THAT version of FWB HD toolkit on the cd supposedly won't go far up the OS rev ladder with success. All my machines came with 8.0 and FWB HD tkit 2.52 on the PowerComputing CD. The 3.0 release ReadMe states support THRU 8.5. I don't have the ReadMe for 2.52 at hand but I'd suspect it if you are using that rev.

    Realize that the older driver may well 'work' BUT even 99% of the time is not good enough. I've learned that one violates a vendor's compatibility restrictions at one's own peril. Sometimes it is a 'rare' combination of circumstances that causes a vendor warning about an OS rev compatibility...BUT a hard disk driver is just too critical a piece of software to not be disciplined about checking compatibility across the board...one of those things that makes OS upgrading so much fun...NOT

    I've had FWB's HD & cd-rom driver kits for years and they are always very specific about what rev of the Mac OS a given release can support.

  20. #20
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    This may not get read, but I feel somewhat guilty about abandoning topic. Truth is, I had to leave for a week, and by the time I got back to problem, I had gotten new matched sticks of Ram....1G's worth......which installed flawlessly, and, finessed a way to install new drivers from APS PowerTools 6.4.4. Machine has been working fine since.

    NOW, I'm having trouble getting started with XLR8 450/G4 SSE installation..I've posted in another location in MacGurus today about that.

    But, thanks for everybody's help............jmikey

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