My youngest brother-in-law Boogs has a computer that I helped him to build. We have been trying to upgrade it with Windows Vista since RC1 was released but we always ended up with a BSOD. Today I spend some time trying to troubleshoot it and figured out the problem was with the ECS RC410L motherboard. ECS has a BIOS upgrade available on their website so I downloaded it and installed it with their utility. Everything went perfectly, the utility said everything was correct, and we rebooted. After the reboot we were greeted with a message telling us the date/time was not set and to hit F1. I hit F1, set the date/time and other important options and hit F10 to save and exit. Nothing. Hmmm. Clear the CMOS, system boots up, date/time not set, try setting only the date/time. Nothing. Try setting 100 different options different ways. Nothing.
Looks like I'm not the only one with this issue: http://forums.hexus.net/showthread.php?t=83863.
So I contact tech support, tell them my issue, point out that other people have the same issue, and I get the same cut/paste response:
If the system doesn't bootup normally after the BIOS flash, the BIOS might have been corrupted, flash with a wrong file or was unsuccessful. Try clearing the CMOS jumper for at least 10 second with AC source unplug, longer time will allow the current or the memory to drain completely, reboot the system. If the system won't bootup on a floppy to re-program the BIOS then you need to contact your vendor for help recovering the BIOS.
Thank you for using ECS products
ECSUSA Technical Support
Now I'm no hardware expert (I used to do a lot of system building, but like Scott those skills have atrophied and I haven't kept up), but how do you clear the CMOS with the AC unplugged? I tried doing this just to test it out and it does nothing. From my experience you need to set the CMOS clearing jumper and turn on the PC with power for it to be cleared (nothing visible happens until you remove the jumper). Anyhow, I already ordered a new motherboard from Newegg and it is not an ECS motherboard as I'm guessing they will not be replacing the board for me. You can bet that I'll never buy an ECS motherboard again nor recommend thier products to anyone based on this really poor customer service. So if you're thinking about buying an ECS product, think again.
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