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Troubleshooting Damaged threadripper system


#1

I have had a Threadripper 1950x on an ASUS ROG Zenith Extreme with 32GB Trident Z RGB Memory. I had an unfortunate coffee accident, which ended up with coffee all through my machine.(Go ahead and laugh, I did.) My system seems to be fully working after a through cleaning, with the exception of the memory sockets on the left side of the CPU. If I place all the RAM on the right, I see all 32GB just fine. With it in Quad channel layout with have on each side, The BIOS sees 16GB available, but will list the RAM in all four sockets. CPU-z in Windows sees all 32GB of ram, but Windows itself only sees 16. I can run in dual channel mode, and it works fine(I’d rather not.) but I’d like to know how I can tell if this is a motherboard problem or a CPU problem that’s not letting me use all 32GB in Quad Channel mode. I’d be fine replacing one or the other, but I don’t want to replace the wrong part, and end up buying both. The fact the the BIOS and CPU-z both see all 4 in quad mode makes me think something on the CPU side is preventing full quad channel mode. Any insights of tests, or things I can check for to figure out what needs to be replaced would be greatly appreciated.


#2

I tend to think it is quite possibly a socket issue when I hear about dead ram channels. Unless you already tried this, I would recommend reseating the CPU. While you have it disassembled, make sure that both the socket pins and the CPU pads look clean and in good condition.


#3

If there was sugar in the coffee it will cause issues down the track. You need to get some distilled water, remove the PCB and wash it in the water. Leave it to dry for a day or so, then for good measure place it in front of a warm airflow to ensure the water evaporates out from under and bga components. You absolutely must use distilled water, both because its not electrically conductive, and it won’t leave behind minerals that could later grow into shorts. This will very likely resolve your memory issue also.

While your PC may be functional now, over time the coffee residue may become conductive and cause erroneous behaviour in the future. You really do need to clean it.


#4

You could try to do a full cmos reset.
Unplug the system from wall power.
After you did a good cleanup on the motherboard, cpu and memory.
You could take out the bios battery from the motherboard for a few minutes.
Then put it back in, then fireup the system and go in to the UEFI / bios.
To check if it detects all the memory again.
Also make sure you dont forget to set date and time correctlly, cause that will be resetted aswell.
Then boot to windows and check if everything works properly.


#5

I fully agree with Gniff, you should make sure that there are no left overs of that accident anywhere.

Left over liquid can damage the board over time, especially while it is in use.

Now to what could be wrong.

I suspect left overs in or under the slots, or the socket.
It seems to be a problem with actually using the ram, since detection and spd info are ok.

Instead of distilled water you can and maybe should use alcohol, IsoProp or something like that.

And to get rid of the cleaning fluid, you can put it in a oven and “bake” it at around 100°C for a few min.

I once cooked a board to get rid of some nasty stuff that was on it.


#6

Would strongly advise against this. The only thing this achieves is degrading every electrical component on the board.

Alcohol will evaporate on its own at room temperature.


#7

Well, 100°C, water boiling temp, and still about 100°c and more away from any solder melting.

Sure, alcohol will evaporate on its own, so you don’t need to bake it, i myself don’t bake boards, and i’m glad someone is sharing my passion against baking boards in general.

But, if you need to minimize “down-time” and you don’t want to wait as long, worming it in the oven helps.


#8

The solder is fine.
It is about the 85°C & 95°C rated capacitors and various micro controllers on the board. Those will not be happy at 100°C


#9

I highly advise against baking the board also, a warm airflow, say from a heater of around 30-50C would be ample, it would allow the water to harmlessly evaporate.

Many people do not realise that when the components are reflow soldered there is a very specific heating and cooling profile that must be followed, otherwise there is a high chance of thermally damaging components on the PCB. A conventional oven is not controllable enough and is likely to cause more problems then it will fix.

Another danger is that if some moisture has diffused into a part due to a fault in the package, or a porous substance, raising it to 100C and causing it to boil into steam could cause physical damage as the expansion into gas will cause microscopic stress cracks. When PCBs are manufactured the parts come in hermetically sealed packages to prevent water ingress and usually have an expiry date as moisture absorbed by the parts from the atmosphere can interfere with the soldering process.


#10

Yeah dont put a board in an oven, just dont. :slight_smile:


#11

And for those that aren’t aware, there is no such thing as a stable temperature in a kitchen oven. Most ovens are going to have an average temperature that varies 15-25 degrees F (some will vary up to 50 degrees F) from what you think you are setting it at. Also I say average temperature, because there are always hot and cold spots, in addition to the simple “coils on, coils off” method of heating most ovens use.

If you can read instructions and watch youtube, but consistently fail at oven cooking, these two factors are likely why. This is also why heavy and thick walled glass/ceramic containers are used for oven baking, they average out and stabilize the temperatures better than metal.

Everything about a kitchen oven is absolutely terrible for anything in regards to electronics or precision heating. Don’t put them in there.


#12

Just to clarify, i didn’t mean it in the general “reflow” bullshit way.

Though we can bury this part of the debate with me retreating my “baking” statement.

Back to the original Topic, @cmerkert how is it going? Any Progress?


#13

@RageBone and thread. After pulling everything apart and cleaning with alcohol and cotton swab, and a final rinse with distilled water, everything seems to be back to the way it was. Has been running fine for a few weeks now, and all Quad Channel Memory is being detected. It actually is running at a higher speed stable then I could get it to run before. Guess it’s still got a bit of caffeine in it. Hopefully it will keep running well, and won’t give me any trouble down the line, but if it does, at least now I know the CPU is not the problem, and it would most likely be the motherboard. Thanks all for your help and input. I keep my coffee on the other side of the desk now.


#14

Congrats, glad to hear you got it going again!


#15

glad to hear that!