290X second card 'fails' and crashes my system
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Sean
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Message 21583 - Posted: 22 Oct 2015, 12:35:04 UTC

I have two Sapphire R9 290X Vapor-X cards in crossfire and my system has been fine since I built it over a year ago however yesterday and today it froze and the second card stopped working.

It displayed a red LED at the end of the card (where the green LED normally is when in ULPS) and the centre fan spun at maximum RPM. I was running BOINC (collatz on the GPU) and watching videos on YT, as I normally do.

After swapping the cards around I tried resuming what I was doing and it did it again, only rather than it being the top card, which I thought may be faulty, it was the lower card again (device 1).

I have tried numerous things in an attempt to diagnose my symptoms such as reinstalling drivers, performing a system restore, etc. Nothing seemed to help, however I did notice that running games and watching videos without BOINC running did not cause an issue. I tested this by playing GTA V on max settings at 4K for over 2 hours.

I then went back to BOINC, on its own, nothing else running, and it the above issue occurs again. I tried it with the GPU suspended and it worked perfectly.

It seems that something in the collatz conjecture tasks I'm receiving are causing the secondary card to fail. I've been running it for over a year now and I have 84M credit in collatz. The new sieve task has been fine up until yesterday.

TL; DR - Collatz conjecture is causing the secondary GPU (device 1) to fail. Even after swapping the cards around the card in position 2 fails.[img][/img]

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Message 21618 - Posted: 27 Oct 2015, 13:27:26 UTC - in response to Message 21583.

I have two Sapphire R9 290X Vapor-X cards in crossfire and my system has been fine since I built it over a year ago however yesterday and today it froze and the second card stopped working.

It displayed a red LED at the end of the card (where the green LED normally is when in ULPS) and the centre fan spun at maximum RPM. I was running BOINC (collatz on the GPU) and watching videos on YT, as I normally do.

After swapping the cards around I tried resuming what I was doing and it did it again, only rather than it being the top card, which I thought may be faulty, it was the lower card again (device 1).

I have tried numerous things in an attempt to diagnose my symptoms such as reinstalling drivers, performing a system restore, etc. Nothing seemed to help, however I did notice that running games and watching videos without BOINC running did not cause an issue. I tested this by playing GTA V on max settings at 4K for over 2 hours.

I then went back to BOINC, on its own, nothing else running, and it the above issue occurs again. I tried it with the GPU suspended and it worked perfectly.

It seems that something in the collatz conjecture tasks I'm receiving are causing the secondary card to fail. I've been running it for over a year now and I have 84M credit in collatz. The new sieve task has been fine up until yesterday.

TL; DR - Collatz conjecture is causing the secondary GPU (device 1) to fail. Even after swapping the cards around the card in position 2 fails.[img][/img]


Thanks to Sosirus' optimizations, the sieve apps can run very efficiently and really heat up the GPU. I can't get my laptop above 95% before it starts slowing itself down to due excessive heat. Is it possible that the air flow to the second GPU is not great enough and that it overheats? Have you monitored both GPUs with GPU-z or similar app to see what the loads and temps are when running BOINC vs just videos?

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Message 21621 - Posted: 27 Oct 2015, 23:21:50 UTC - in response to Message 21618.

Hi, thanks for the reply.

Got to the bottom of the issue. Turns out the power cable to the second GPU had a broken connector at the power supply end and would periodically cut out, causing it to die.

Fortunately had a spare cable and everything is back to normal. :)

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Message 21623 - Posted: 28 Oct 2015, 9:32:47 UTC - in response to Message 21621.
Last modified: 28 Oct 2015, 9:33:21 UTC

Hi, thanks for the reply.

Got to the bottom of the issue. Turns out the power cable to the second GPU had a broken connector at the power supply end and would periodically cut out, causing it to die.

Fortunately had a spare cable and everything is back to normal. :)


One more thing if you do NOT game then using the crossfire cable is not helpful in Boinc, if you do game then yes it is helpful.

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Message 21626 - Posted: 28 Oct 2015, 15:51:40 UTC - in response to Message 21623.

The 290Xs don't require a crossfire cable. It's all through PCIe now (for AMD anyway).

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Message 21627 - Posted: 28 Oct 2015, 16:29:43 UTC

Got to the bottom of the issue. Turns out the power cable to the second GPU had a broken connector at the power supply end and would periodically cut out, causing it to die.


Doh! The first tech support question should always be, "Is it plugged in?"

Glad you found the issue.

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Message 21630 - Posted: 29 Oct 2015, 6:36:55 UTC - in response to Message 21627.
Last modified: 29 Oct 2015, 6:39:21 UTC

Doh! The first tech support question should always be, "Is it plugged in?"

And the second is: "Have you pushed the power button/turned it on?"
Happened in reality when i came to the computer of a colleague at work to fix it.

Short repair time for me. :-)

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Message 21632 - Posted: 29 Oct 2015, 11:11:56 UTC - in response to Message 21630.
Last modified: 29 Oct 2015, 11:13:08 UTC

Doh! The first tech support question should always be, "Is it plugged in?"

And the second is: "Have you pushed the power button/turned it on?"
Happened in reality when i came to the computer of a colleague at work to fix it.

Short repair time for me. :-)


A LARGE East Coast County Government hired me as a first line pc tech to do just that, make sure the problems were 'user errors', I was much cheaper than paying an 'IT guy' to plug things in or restart the pc. You would be surprised at the 'doh' moments I had over the 5 years I was there.

To get this back on topic I am glad it was something simple and not a motherboard problem!!


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