Sunday, June 24, 2012

Gigabyte H61m-D2h Linux compatibility.

It works perfectly. All of the VGA, DVI and HDMI outputs work with multi monitor setups. The mic input also works; but I've not tested digital output and input.

Although this product is Linux compatible, but like all Gigabyte boards, it's full of issues.

The front USB don't work, booting from USB CD/DVD doesn't work with the latest BIOS (F5).

There're problems with over clocking.  If you've over clocked the board, and reset the PC (or push the power button for 4 seconds), the BIOS will think there has been a crash cause of bad overclocking settings and it'll reset to defaults after a few minutes of failed starts (the PC starts for a few seconds, then shutsdown, and then starts up again; this happens for a few minutes). And many times, it'll never recover. It'll keep on resetting whole day and night, but it'll never start. You've to cut off the power (or push the power button for 5 minutes) to shut down the PC completely and then start (with OC settings reset to default).

At times doing the above to recover doesn't work, i.e. if you power on the PC, it'll start resetting forever.

And now (update) I realized that this doesn't have to do with overclocking. Even without overclocking, there's no guarantee the PC will boot next morning; it may just fail to boot and after a series of resets, when it finally starts (somehow), it warns you that the overclocking settings are reseted to default -- when infact, I've not overclocked.

Gigabyte has ensured that the dual BIOS feature DOES come to use. The BIOS is deliberately corrupted as the board simply resets again and again, and then when it starts "check sum failure, recovering..."

It doesn't matter if you have a dual BIOS feature or not, cause boards without them will simply never get their BIOS corrupt; whereas this one will frequently.

Another problem, actually more of a Microsoft Intel (for Microsoft Ultrabook and various other things) problem is that the USB will reset from time to time resulting in 'reset high speed USB device' by the ehci_hcd driver. It manifests itself as silent unknown errors on Windows; and this problem is well know with this particular chipset.

No, this's not the end of it. Now I'm getting SATA errors. The SATA link will drop all of a sudden resulting in a 'tack' sound from my HDD. This happens when the HDD is under a lot of load. I'm not sure if this's a known bug, but speaking of sata, the sata controller of this particular chipset has limited life cause of 'unknown Intel errors' (may be they inherited it by trying to make their products too much Windows 8 compatible), however Intel provides replacement for this.

This board can be best compared to Windows and designed for Windows enthusiasts/diehard users. It has a lot of buttons/feature to play and tinker around with, and it really doesn't matter then work or not, Windows users just like to 'see' them and change settings and options; on top of that, we get Windows like reliability and all bells and whistles (anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-crapware, anti-malware, firewall, tweaking software etc... etc... etc... in contrast to stuff like dual BIOS) which's needed to keep using the board and to compensate for it's bad QA.

All in all, I've warned you, I've had 2 Gigabyte boards (older being a higher end one), and none of them worked well.

Intel HT (Hyper threading) single threaded performance.

I didn't find any info on this, so I decided to test it on my own.

I ran mksquashfs with just 1 thread (-processors 1) with HT truned on and off.

It turned out that, with HT enabled, despite a single thread used (or 1/4th of the no. of threads the processor had to offer), all of the processing power of a single core was utilized. With HT turned on, the task finished in 46 seconds and with HT turned off, it took 45 seconds.

So I suggest HT turned on always, even for single threaded applications.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

The perfect call blocking app (Android).

By perfect I also mean permissions.

Privacy Guard (also called Block SMS & calls in play store) is a simple app with professional grade permissions, so you can be ensured that your contacts are not uploaded to the internet without your knowledge, which other apps might do (cause they have full network access).

It's a very bad idea to install an app blindfolded on your secure Android phone. By installing apps with bad permissions, you're yourself encouraging your phone to get compromised; after doing so, don't blame the OS if you do get compromised, it's all your fault.