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  What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ? 
 
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Don Ziehm Dec 29, 2004, 09:49am EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
RE: Dead PC After BIOS Flash

I also download the wrong BIOS for my PC a few months back. This was after HP tech support repeatedly assured me that the 3.17 ver. BIOS was OK for my a350e Athlon based Pavlion. My PC was dead on boot up and nothing I tried could bring it to life. I had to send it to HP repair facility in Calif. At least they paid for everything since it was still under warrantee.

I really think that people have to be very careful about upgrading any HP BIOS for the one that came with their PC. For example, what happened in my case is my PC was a custom configured PC. HP later admitted to me that it uses a different BIOS version than the off the shelf retail revision which is what the 3.17 ver. was meant for.

The real issue in this version 3.12 BIOS upgrade fiasco is who did the upgrade? Almost all BIOS upgrades I know off are done by the motherboard mfg. - AsusTech in this case. Now if HP internally did this 3.12 upgrade, no wonder it's totally screwed up. Everything they touch software wise turns to garbage in my opinion.

Since HP loads half the BIOS on a hidden partition on the hard drive, a bad BIOS flash is unrecoverable as far as I know. In my case, they replaced the entire motherboard rather than just the BIOS chip. That also was an interesting and distrubing development since it indicated that ordering a third party BIOS chip might not correct the problem.

Bottom line - don't upgrade your HP BIOS is your PC is out of warrantee; unless your willing to possibly replace your motherboard at your own cost!

I do know I will never buy another OEM computer as long as I live. From now on it is a "real" motherboard with a "real" BIOS from a known mfg. with a retail ver. of WIN XP that has a CD and full Microsoft tech support.

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Don Ziehm Dec 29, 2004, 04:37pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Now this is extremely interesting!

After everything I did as noted in prior postings in this thread, I was still getting ocassional lockups and reboots from the ver. 3.12 BIOS so I flashed back to the original 3.07 version.

Now when I originally upgraded to ver. 3.12, I noticed strange things with the mouse. Like it suddenly was recognized by WIN XP as MS PS2 mouse in device manager etc. At that time, I could of swore that the mouse was shown originally as a Logitec mouse in the 3.07 BIOS. Even went so far as to try to upgrade the mouse driver and WIN XP stated it couldn't find a better driver. I even asked HP tech support about it. Of course, the idiots said it was OK that WIN XP show this as a MS mouse since it was a "HP" mouse. BS once again.

After the 3.07 reflash and reboot, WIN XP states it found new hardware which I thought was strange. Lo and behold, the mouse is now recognized as a Logitec mouse.

I had my suspisions origionally that the mouse might be the culprit in the random lockups.

Bottom line, the 3.12 BIOS upgrade is trash.

I also noticed that they have removed the 3.12 BIOS upgrade from their download site. Also absolutely no reference to their that the 3.12 BIOS prior update was defective. Way to go HP!

larry c Dec 29, 2004, 09:11pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
One thing that you need to keep in mind with this motherboard is that HP, in what I consider a really stupid move, has multiple variants of the A7N8X-LA motherboards. These are all different enough that they require different bios's, but for some reason HP calls them all A7N8X-LA, using a subname to designate the difference. For example, the mobo that most of this thread refers to is the A7N8X-LA Focus, which is the mobo in an a350e.

If you flash a non-Focus motherboard with this bios, you risk trashing the motherboard. Same thing holds, of coarse, if you flash a Focus motherboard with a non-Focus bios.

Some of this may explain why HP is so cryptic about flashing bios's.

More information can be found here: http://www.elhvb.com/mboards/OEM/HP/

Don Ziehm Dec 30, 2004, 07:11pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
I agree with the latest post that HP has problems in their naming conventions. Actual it's ASUS which gave this motherboard it's title. The A7N8X-LA has two models, the FOCUS and the ESCAPE. The FOCUS model has an AGP slot within no intergrated graphics whereas the ESCAPE is the model with intergrated graphics.

Now I assume everyone who installed this defective 3.12 BIOS did so by correctly connecting to HP's web site and entering their model number and OS were subsequentially directed to the appropriate web page that included a BIOS update named 3.12.

The real issue is first HP irresponsibilty in posting a defective BIOS upgrade and then compounding the issue by not acknowleging that the previous BIOS was defective and giving detailed instructions on how to correct the problem. Why do their customers have to search the web for a forum such as this to get a solution to a problem HP created? Compound that with Indian based tech support that doesn't have a clue on what you talking about when confronted with e-mail inquiries that clearly indicated that a problem exists with their provided software.

Tommy B Jan 01, 2005, 07:43pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Don't know where the post I saved went.

Darrell Ray Jan 02, 2005, 08:42am EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
I was very pleased to see that HP removed the 3.12 BIOS update from their download site. I experienced the same bit of hardware wizard re-installation work that Don mentioned as well. However, since I had done a Win installation, I was not sure which bit of tweaking was responsible for that little annoyance.

About a week after I emailed the CEO my tale of woe, a real live person from HP (I think his name was Jeff) called me at home (on 12/20/04) to find out how my computer was working. I told him that (no-thanks-to-HP- tech-support) my machine was back in fine condition after I flashed back to 3.07. Of course, he was obligated to tell me that a BIOS flash would affect all system functions, etc. and that it may have been problematic if I had added any cards, etc. I told him that I had not altered to system to any significant extent at the time I had the problem, and that the problem was most definitely the BIOS. I instructed him or someone there to do a web search for "problems with the a350e" and see how many people were affected. I strongly urged him to have the BIOS reevaluated and removed before more people were harmed.

Maybe a corporate behemoth DOES listen to consumers, after all! Congratulations to everyone who joined in the crusade. Now if they would just own up to the fact that they messed up!

Don Ziehm Jan 29, 2005, 12:45pm EST Report Abuse
>> Attention: HP A7N8X-LA Motherboards That Were Flashed With Ver. 3.12 BIOS
I happened to come across this HP web site link:

http://forums1.itrc.hp.com/service/forums/questionanswer.do?ad...dId=711064

where a number of poor souls were discussing the same issues that occured when they flashed their PC's to this 3.12 BIOS.

I do advise anyone who did this flash to review the posts there since a number of disturbing events are related there. Chief among them was how HP was in essence rebuilding some PC's by replacing motherboards, hard drives, and even modems!

In other instances, HP seemed to play dumb about the situation and refused to do anything to fix the "busted" PC's.

I did see one post that observed what has been noted in this forum; that the ver. 3.12 BIOS has been removed from the web with no reference what so ever that it had caused major issues.

It would seem prudent for anyone who performed the ver. 3.12 BIOS flash to run full diagnostics on their PC and ensure all hardware is functioning properly.

Well, at least their appears to some encourging news on the HP front this year. Appears that Carli is about to get the boot as CEO. About time!

Jon Moon Jan 30, 2005, 12:35am EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
the reason that HP does not acknowledge their huge blunder (admitting it is HP's fault) is because this would make them liable (as they should be) to pay damages

in my neck of the woods HP = high price/hopeless product

EVERY person who has lost time, money or even patience should start a class action as this is the ONLY way these huge corporations will ever listen and take responsibility for their actions

P4 2.8c @ 3.8GHz, XP120HSF, MSI Neo 875P FIS2R, 2x512 GEIL PC4000UP, Radeon 9800Pro, 2xWD1200JD Raid0+1xWD1600JB, Pioneer 120s + 107D, LianLi 60, 19" Diamondtron, XP Pro SP2
Darrell Ray Jan 30, 2005, 04:44pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Believe me, Jon, I feel your pain. But the whole idea of a class action lawsuit is pretty unrealistic, isn't it? I mean, there is the burden of proof aspect, and then there is the fact that lawyers are generally the ones who make out best in any of them.

As for me, I've decided to move on. HP probably lost a lot of future business from any of us who got hit by their blighted BIOS, but PC's are just one small part of their megalithic empire. Ink cartidges are probably their bread and butter. And HP IPods are the wave of the future. Now that's a scary thought....



Don Ziehm Mar 26, 2005, 04:28pm EST Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
I just noticed the HP has reposted the infamous 3.12 BIOS upgrade on their web site. From what I can tell, it looks identical to the previous bad one that trashed countless PCs. The revision number is the same, 3.12. The date is the same 9/2004 and the download size looks the same size. The SP number is also the same as the old one.

Now wouldn't that be something if they just went ahead and reposted the same bad BIOS upgrade?

Anyway, looking for a brave soul to try this rev. 3.12 BIOS and post their findings. I learned my leason with the last one and am taking a wait and see better than being burned attitude.

Don Ziehm Apr 09, 2005, 10:17am EDT Report Abuse
>> HP ASUS A7N8X-LA ver. 3.12 BIOS Re-release?
I just noticed the HP has reposted the infamous 3.12 BIOS upgrade on their web site. From what I can tell, it looks identical to the previous bad one that trashed countless PCs. The revision number is the same, 3.12. The date is the same 9/2004 and the download size looks the same size. The SP number is also the same as the old one.

Now wouldn't that be something if they just went ahead and reposted the same bad BIOS upgrade?

Anyway, looking for a brave soul to try this rev. 3.12 BIOS and post their findings. I learned my leason with the last one and am taking a wait and see better than being burned attitude.

Davide Santachiara May 29, 2005, 04:49pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Dear Sirs,

Here in Italy I am experiencing the same problem with a Compaq Presario S5290IT mounting a A7N8X-LA motherboard. Since I upgraded (?) the bios to v3.12 I am experiencing random lock-ups / resets. I am wondering whether keeping an almost unusable (for serious purpose) PC or risking to use the famous SP24001 3.07 BIOS update. The warranty here in the EU should be 2 years but for strange reasons it is only 1 year on this Compaq Presario. Now the PC is 1,5 years old so apparently it is no more covered by warranty.

Which is the experience here in this forum about flashing the old SP24001? It seems I have a Focus A7N8X-LA mb. Could you tell me which is your HP/Compaq product so that I can verify on the HP website whether the 3.12 BIOS was the same as mine?

Kind Regards

Davide Santachiara

Darrell Ray May 29, 2005, 05:21pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Davide:

Sounds like you are having the same problem many of us had with this motherboard. I flashed back to the old BIOS with absolutely no ill effects. Like you, my machine was just out of warranty, so basically, I had nothing to lose.

It sounds like HP needs to be barraged with more emails about their harmful BIOS update. They pulled it for a while after the first wave of disasters, but now it seems to be back.

Check their website and send a message right to the top and at least register a loud, long complaint. Send several to as many departments as you can. Sure, it may not get you anywhere, but at least you let your voice be heard.

In the meantime, if you have the nerve, you might try to revert to the original BIOS. It did work for several of us.

Good luck.

Davide Santachiara May 30, 2005, 10:36am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Dear Ray,

Could you tell me which was the model of your HP/Compaq personal computer? This could give me some more confidence that my motherboard is identical to yours and SP24001 will work.

I must say I am absolutely disappointed by HP support at least here in Italy. They answer only from Monday to Friday from 9 to 18 that is exactly when I am at work and they require to have the computer in front of you. So what I have to do? Bring my PC at work and call the support from the office?

For the A7N8X-LA problem I tried the chat but they only cope for peripherals sold in the US, pity as they basically answer 24h a day.

When I bought the PC I have found out that the DVD reader was in some case not able to read CD-RW burned with the CD writer on the same machine. I was only able to loose my time and I've got plenty of useless answers and software. I gave up and kept my DVD as it was.

In the meanwhile I had also connection problem between a HP 3970 scanner and this Presario. In this case I tried the email system but the answer was like reinstall everything or similar suggestions that means I should loose a couple of days just for that. I must say that after having installed the new BIOS these problems disappeared, probably the BIOS really fixed some problems linked to USB ports. Pity the computer now lock-ups every couple of hours.

My best regards

Davide Santachiara

Darrell Ray May 30, 2005, 12:50pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Davide:

I am running an HP a350e which I purchased directly from HP in October of 2003 with the A7N8X-LA supplied with an AMD Athlon XP 2600+, 1 Gig RAM, 128 MB Nvidia 5200 8x AGP adapter, 2-120 Gig HDDs, DVD burner, CDRW-DVD drive, with an added analog video capture card. I specifically configured this system for home video capture/editing.

Your symptoms are identical to mine and everyone else's who has posted in this list. I was trying to convert my home movies to DVD, and every time I got to the rendering process for a short video, the system would reboot. It was extremely frustrating. HP wants you to contact a service center, send the machine in, and, if out of warranty, it will cost dearly to even have the technician look at it. They will tell you that flashing back to an earlier BIOS cannot be done. Well, like so many other things on their website, they were wrong, at least on this count.

Let's wait and see if Don Z. or Larry C. check in on this thread again. They have researched to problems more than anyone.

larry c May 30, 2005, 04:05pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Hi Davide and Darrell,
Checking in here at your request! :-)

I have the same PC/motherboard as Darrell (A350e and a A7N8X-LA mobo).
Davide, the thing to keep in mind is HP & Asus, for some strange reason, released a number of motherboards all called 'A7N8X-LA'; however the specifications of these motherboards are different and the bioses are not interchangeable. You can read more about this here: http://www.elhvb.com/mboards/OEM/HP/ . The mobo in the a350e is the 'focus' variant. I'm not sure which is inside your Presario S5290IT; perhaps you'll be able to determine this from the info at the web page I cited.

Larry

Davide Santachiara May 31, 2005, 02:46pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
Hello Darrell and Larry,

Thanks for your kind support. I have looked at the BIOS v3.12 upgrade file for A350e and it was exactly the same one I downloaded for my Presario S5290IT. So I am quite sure that SP24001 should work.

I also tried the other interesting suggestion given by Don Zihem and I increased the voltage of the CPU fan. That seemed to help a little bit.

However before taking the risk of the upgrade I am negotiating with HP/Compaq support a (free) repair. I will let you know how it will end up with HP support here in Italy.

Hope to get in touch soon with some good news

My best regards

Davide

Josh Josh Jun 03, 2005, 04:01pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
I was trying to help out a friend putting in a AIW 9800 into an HP Pavilion a350e. Every time we try to boot it, the lights go on for a second but then go out. In fact the only way to get the card working is to unplug the extra power connector on the video card and only plug it in after the power has turned on. After that it works fine but is there any fix for this? I upgraded the bios to the new but that didn't help. I know about the horror stories with this new bios but it seems to be working on this one but that video card problem is still there. I've also upgraded the PS to a 350 Antec. Anyone have any ideas?

My version has the on board video.

STEVE BRIANT Jun 10, 2005, 06:35am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: What board will replace a A7N8X-LA ?
hi, i tried the new bios version 3.12, and jus crashed my pc in every two hours or so, i had this trouble for 2 days thinking it was my new game controller i had installed as my error reports are sent to microsoft and a web page shows some details of what coused it, then i eventually went back to the old version and had no problems since, but what i have noticed is that on HP site there are 3 versions as follows:

Release Date: 2004-09-10 Version: 3.06

Release Date: 2004-09-17 Version: 3.12

Release Date: 2004-09-16 Version: 3.21

it seems strange to have the 3.21 relesed on the 16th where as the 3.12 is released on the 17th?

heres the link and its the first 3 links in the search on the HP site, has eney1 tried the 3.21 version??

http://search.hp.com/query.html?col=alldocs&charset=iso-88...&hpl=0


LOL thats some web adresse for a alink^^

Davide Santachiara Jun 14, 2005, 04:57am EDT Report Abuse
>> Bios 3.12 problems with A7N8X-LA - hopefully solved
Just for your information I "downgraded" succesfully my BIOS from 3.12 to 3.07 using the SP24001 file suggested in this forum.

Now it seems my Compaq Presario 5290IT does not experience anymore lock-ups or random resets. The only drawback is that the 3.12 BIOS actually solved USB connection problems between the Presario and my HP 3970 scanner (random loss of USB communication). Now that I have installed again BIOS v3.07 this problem magically reappeared but after all it is something I can live with.

I have also to say that the Italian HP support offered me to replace the PC and the people I've talked to were kind and cooperative.

Thanks to everybody for your kind support

My best regards

Davide Santachiara
Italy


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