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  Can AMD/Intel Tell If You Ever "Unlocked" CPU core(s)? 
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john albrich Jun 22, 2011, 08:39am EDT Report Abuse

I can't seem to find a definitive yes/no answer on this question...

Can AMD (or Intel) determine if you have ever "Unlocked" a CPU's core(s) and thus refuse to RMA the part because you "abused" it?

More specifically, is there a specific bit on the CPU die that is permanently "flipped" and thus "records" when you unlock the disabled CPU core(s) even just one time and for just a few minutes? Does that capability change depending on which series/model CPU you have?

For Example

Let's say I buy an AMD AthlonII X2 CPU and try unlocking the 2 additional cores. It turns into an AMD PhenomII X4 for just a few minutes and then I simply look at it in CPU-z and then turn it back into the default Athlon X2 (as far at the system is concerned) by again disabling the "unlock" setting in BIOS.

Let's ASSUME it successfully unlocked during my test AND I ran it ONLY at stock voltage and speeds without any problems for 5 minutes to look at CPU-z data, and then I just decide to "re-lock" the cores so it turns back into the AthlonII X2. In other words, all I did was test for a few minutes the feasibility of unlocking the cores on the CPU before setting things back to normal.

But for some reason the CPU fails a few months from now, even when the voltage and temps have NEVER gone above specified levels stock levels. So, I want to RMA it because IMO it has never been electrically or thermally stressed due to anything I did. (e.g. I didn't overvolt or overclock it and thus the failure was not related to my "unlocking" test.)

Will AMD be able to tell me "We determined you unlocked the cores" and therefore refuse my RMA."?

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Sean Costello Jun 22, 2011, 11:29am EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Can AMD/Intel Tell If You Ever "Unlocked" CPU core(s)?
I think so long as you RMA it back the way it was when you bought it it should be fine.

Story of My Life-
Meats_Of_Evil Jun 22, 2011, 12:09pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Can AMD/Intel Tell If You Ever "Unlocked" CPU core(s)?
Only one way to find out man. Send them the cpu lol, if its not functioning properly then who cares? I bet you'll get a replacement no problem. Remember, manufacturers themselves promote their core unlocking capacity on the motherboards. If the procedure could be so dangerous as to damage a cpu then I don't think that the core unlocking feature would be so vastly available.

Heck, I've read on many occasions on people that slip notes on RMA'd products with hints for a better product and they actually get one in return lol. Typically you can get a better one if they don't have the same model you sent but maybe you'll get lucky and actually get a true Pehnom Quad lol.

Everything I write is Sarcasm.
G. G. Jun 22, 2011, 03:47pm EDT Report Abuse
>> Re: Can AMD/Intel Tell If You Ever "Unlocked" CPU core(s)?
Personally I don't think they would be able to tell if one were to leave everything stock (speed & voltages). IMO they either hard cut the line that enables/disable the second half of a four core process or they embed an ID that allows it to run as a 2 core vs the original 4 core. Obviously by hard cutting the line that enables the second half of the cores will definately disable its use.... but if it is just an id thing, the bios can get around that.

So sending it back/RMA, nothing has changed if there is no sign of damaged from overvoltage/overspeed. So you should be good to go.

Worse case, if there is an actual mechanism, is that they just send it back your original and said that you had enabled the second half of the cores and that violates warranty. But the smart thing for them to do is just replace it with a new one to keep you as a customer.

I got a call into my brother to see if he has knowledge in this area. He is a whole lot closer to the source than we are.





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