[Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - random reboots with 4 GB RAM!

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[Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - random reboots with 4 GB RAM!

Postby oversized » Sat May 16, 2009 17:13

Hello,

I installed 64bit Windows 7 RC, but soon after some basic tasks like surfing the net, Office work... my computer reboots!

P.S. Vista SP1 64bit has the same issue, restarts the computer in random patterns!!!! So it's not a problem with windows 7.... even 'officially supported' Vista can't work on this notebook!!! :evil:

It seems this CPU/notebook is 32bit-only!? :x
Last edited by oversized on Mon Dec 28, 2009 2:22, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Sun May 17, 2009 16:49

Ubuntu 9.04 64bit has the same issue! :P So it's definitely hardware related problem!!!


I can't believe I wont' be able to use all 4 GB of RAM.... only 3 GB max! I wonder who's to blame - Fujitsu or Intel?
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Tue May 19, 2009 13:59

Anyone with similar problems?! Other Amilo models?
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Thu Jun 04, 2009 0:47

I guess nobody but me plan to use 64bit OS/software on their Amilo midrange Pi 3525? :?:

From official data sheet:

Operating system Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium (32-bit version)

That would be the answer - hi customers, you have bought 64bit CPU but you can't use 64bit operating system. Sorry, this is 2009. and it's just too early to use 64bit OS and software. Buy our new model somewhere in 2012-2015. :|
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Fri Jun 12, 2009 5:42

just tried latest Fedora 11 x64.... and guess what reboot reboot :D

None 64bit based OS is supported, what Fujitsu have to say?? :x
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby greychin » Sun Jun 14, 2009 21:41

hi, afraid i'm writing this on a pi3525 with win7 x64. it all installed with no trouble. windows had all the drivers. runs fine. battery doesnt last too long but i think its getting beter as its only a few weeks old. certainly no reboots. how does yours crash? does it blue screen?

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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Tue Jun 16, 2009 5:32

Hello,

That is certainly great news but I believe our configurations are different. Can you post yours? Especially LAN and WLAN cards your Amilo has installed.

How much RAM do you have?

Mine Pi 3525 crashes without any BSOD, no errors, nothing, just a simple reboot, constant and random pattern, which can't be linked to any specific OS, just what they all have in common is 64bit code.

If you look on the other forums, people have the same issue.

So it's best that you post your configuration, perhaps you have different components which would help us to solve the problem (for now, everyone suspects Realtek LAN card is making troubles, with it's power management).

Thanks,
O.
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Tue Jun 16, 2009 20:36

I just saw there's a new version of BIOS available for Pi 3525, from the description it might help with this problem too, even they didn't mention 64bit OS... just in general shutdowns

current BIOS V. 1.09C:

Solved problems:

- Prevent the system sporadically switch off by itself
- sometimes during boot process
- sometimes after several minutes/hours of working

Known errors, problems and restrictions:

- none

Additional Information:

- Chipset conversion (Update Memory Reference Code 2.3 + Cantiga BIOS 2.3)
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby NeoLojik » Wed Jun 17, 2009 14:14

Hello all ^^

I'm considering purchasing a Pi 3525 and stumbled upon this little problem. After a little searching I found that someone has posted a solution in the German section of this very forum:
http://forum.ts.fujitsu.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=60&t=38898

It seems to be limited to using a 64bit OS with 4GB of RAM, which from my limited knowledge would mean it's likely an issue with remapping the PCI stuff above the 4GB boundary. The solution involves setting either windows or linux to limit the RAM used. Could someone with one of these laptops and Linux try booting with "mem=4096m" on the kernel command line and see if the problem goes away? For windows you need to remove 1 stick of RAM to install and then limit windows to 4095Mb (yes, 4095, it ignores the value if you set it to 4096) before putting the RAM back in.

Has anyone tried the new BIOS, does that help at all?

Finally, can anyone tell me what the battery life is like on the Pi 3525, under windows is fine, but under linux would be great ^^

Many thanks

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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Fri Jun 19, 2009 6:21

Oh, what for us non-Deutsch speakers?

I still haven't tried new BIOS, but I'm planning to do so in the next few days. I'll post results here.

So all we have to do is enable that line in order to boot 64bit OS without restarts?

Sounds strange since RAM is anyway physically limited to 4096 MB:

Physical memory
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Physical Memory 0:
Bank: Bank 0
Capacity: 2048 MB
Data width: 64 Bit
Location: M1
Speed: 800 MHz

Physical Memory 1:
Bank: Bank 1
Capacity: 2048 MB
Data width: 64 Bit
Location: M2
Speed: 800 MHz


Anyways I'll give it a try, I need to install 64bit OS first (again and again).

P.S. I think I've read on other forums customers with only 2 GB configurations also have the same issue, so I have little belief this is big RAM related problem, it is more likely the problem is caused elsewhere :/

P.P.S. Regarding your battery life question, it is very good - both Linux and Windows OS. Since this notebook has integrated video card it's a major cut of the power needs :) In battery saving mode you can use notebook up to 3 hours, or ~2 hours for a full DVD movie play.
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby NeoLojik » Fri Jun 19, 2009 15:38

Hi again,

I talked to another Pi 35xx user who was experiencing the same issue when trying to run any 64bit version of Linux. He confirmed that booting with the "mem=4096m" kernel parameter fixed it in his quick LiveCD test. He plans to try installing a full-blown 64bit Linux distribution soon, I'll let you know the results if he gets back to me.

I went ahead and ordered a Pi 3525 which arrived this morning. I don't have a 64bit Linux distro handy to test with, but I'll download a LiveCD this evening and try with and without the kernel parameter, as well as try the new BIOS. Currently the laptop has 1.07C. Perhaps I can catch some thing in the kernel log which might explain it.

I was quite pleased to find my Pi 3525 came with the Intel 5100 wireless card and the higher spec battery too. So far I'm really impressed, the Ubuntu 9.10 beta disk I tried booted fine and everything worked out the box. Except a couple of the Fn key combinations, it looked like they got stuck on, but I didn't play around much.

I'll let you know how I get on.

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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby NeoLojik » Fri Jun 19, 2009 19:17

A little update.

I downloaded and burned both the gentoo amd64 minimal ISO as well as the 1.09C BIOS ISO. Booting the gentoo disk with no "mem=4096m" parameter caused a reboot momentarily after "Unpacking firmware" (more on this in a moment). Booting with the "mem=4096m" parameter allowed the machine to boot fully without issue.

However, I noticed something odd. Booting with the mem parameter left the machine with under 3GB of available ram, as reported by "free -m". It's almost as though the memory limit specified at boot time is shaving off the last gigabyte of RAM.

Quite by chance I discovered that the gentoo disk wouldn't cause the reboot until well after init took over. By halting the boot process at the keymap selection the machine would happily sit there without issue. This meant the kernel was already running quite happily, ruling out any problems there.

A little further experimentation revealed that booting with "acpi=off" allowed the machine to boot fully. Looking through the init script where the acpi was loaded I found the list of modules which were loaded when ACPI was requested. Loading them one by one I found that loading either the "processor" or "thermal" modules causes the machine to reboot. Booting with acpi=off also shows nearly 4GB of RAM in "free -m". I'm assuming the missing megs are due to the onboard video.

With the lack of a serial port and no kernel "oops" displayed I'm a little unsure how to debug this further. Everything is fine under 32bit Linux, except for the missing RAM and the fact that this affects Windows as well would point to a deeper problem than a Linux incompatibility. Does anyone know of someone at Fujitsu Siemens I could contact via e-mail to perhaps correct this unfortunate issue?

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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby NeoLojik » Tue Jun 23, 2009 0:54

Another little update.

I spoke with Fujitsu Siemens support who were very insistent that their consumer products aren't meant to run 64bit operating systems. They're simply not tested or validated with 64bit software, and Fujitsu don't provide 64bit drivers either.

They suggested upgrading to the latest BIOS, which I'd already done, and stated that as 32bit operating systems were functioning correctly, there obviously wasn't a hardware problem. Finally they said they only support the OS which is shipped with the product.

Ok, that's fair enough. Looking around other notebook manufacturers I find that many of them have the same stance. I knew about the incompatibility prior to purchase, so it's not a big deal to me.

However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel for Pi 3525 users running Linux.

Since the days of the Intel Pentium Pro, CPU manufacturers have added a feature called PAE, or Physical Address Extensions, to their CPUs. Basically they foresaw that one day 4GB of RAM would be common under the 32bit architecture and this was the solution. Enabling PAE causes the memory space to go from 32bit to 36bit, increasing the 4GB limit to 64GB.

PAE isn't supported under Windows and has been removed from consumer versions of Windows since Windows XP SP1 I believe. It's due to the fact that device drivers need to support it, else it causes problems.

PAE under Linux has been supported since the original 2.6 kernel release and with the upcoming 2.6.31 kernel the Intel driver works correctly with PAE enabled. To activate PAE you need to build the kernel with HIGHMEM64G enabled. Once you boot the new kernel you should find you have ~4050MB of RAM available. I haven't tested it fully, but my limited testing showed no stability issues with PAE enabled. There is apparently a small performance hit because of the extra work involved with using the larger address space, but for desktop use I'd be surprised if anyone even noticed.

Hopefully at some point in the future Fujitsu will re-assess this issue and fix it via the BIOS. I don't believe it's a hardware issue as all the components involved are 64bit compatible, and although highly unstable, 64bit code does work. Where the exact problem lies? I've no idea.

For me though, 32bit and PAE gives me everything I need, so I'm unlikely to chase this up further.

Hopefully the information I've gathered can help someone out there though, and you never know, maybe someone will develop a real fix rather than a workaround.

All the best,
NeoLojik

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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby oversized » Tue Jun 23, 2009 12:57

Hello NeoLogic,

Glad you also got info from Fujtisu that only Vista 32bit is supported for this series. :x Somebody put something in my drink... :roll:


Anyways great for that workaround with PAE and Linux! Just one correction, M$ didn't removed PAE support from Sp1.... please take a look at the attachment. :)

What would be soultion in Windows? XP/Vista/7 32bit in order to use 4 GB of RAM?

As you can see I'm running PAE and Win XP 32bit, but I only got around 3 GB of RAM (32bit address space limitation).

Once again, the core problem for the 64bit issue would be Realtek LAN card.

Take a look at the boot screen of your Linux:

PCI unsupported PM CAP regs Version (7)


==> Ethernet NIC Realtek RTL8101E/RTL8102E

So the new BIOS doesn't help at all? They're talking about some sporadic shutdowns, I'm not sure if they mean reboots=shutdowns?
Attachments
PAE_XP_SP3.png
PAE in Windows XP SP3 / Amilo Pi 3525
PAE_XP_SP3.png (36.84 KiB) Viewed 9533 times
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Re: [Pi 3525] 64bit OS problems - constant restarting!

Postby NeoLojik » Tue Jun 23, 2009 17:02

Hello again,

As far as I'm aware, the "Physical Address Extension" shown in the properties of "My Computer" doesn't actually indicate that PAE is enabled. Last time I enabled PAE in Windows XP it involved adding /PAE to the boot option.

Microsoft used to state in their knowledge base that Windows XP Professional could access a maximum of 64GB of RAM, but when I checked just now it's been changed to 4GB. I read an article some time ago regarding this subject and it stated that since Windows XP SP1 the /PAE option doesn't do anything any more. Windows Vista has never had the PAE option.

I believe Microsoft removed the option as very few of the big "add-in" manufacturers (ATi & nvidia most notably) weren't prepared to make their drivers PAE compatible and consumers were enabling the option and suddenly finding their systems to be unstable. Microsoft's server operating systems do still have the ability to enable PAE, but the nvidia and ATi drivers still fail when it's enabled.

As for the "PCI unsupported PM CAP regs Version (7)" message, yes, I did notice it but I don't have the module installed for the on-board Realtek card as I'm using the Intel 5100 wireless.

From my testing I found that I could reliably run a 64bit version of Linux either of these ways:

1) Booting with mem=4096m. This unfortunately causes the loss of the final 1GB of RAM which is allocated just after the 4GB boundary.
2) Booting with acpi=off. This disables all power saving and the ability to access thermal data, battery information and throttle the CPU. You can access all 4GB of RAM though.
3) Booting normally, but prevent the "processor" and "thermal" modules from loading. This leaves you with a half-working ACPI interface. You can access all ACPI information except for temperature data and CPU data. CPU throttling doesn't work.

Perhaps the issue does lie with the Realtek card, I don't know and I don't have any way to try and find out. Unfortunately I believe the only way to be certain would be for Fujitsu to fix it (which seems unlikely), for someone to physically remove the device from the motherboard (voiding their warranty, and likely damaging their motherboard in the process) or to disable it via the BIOS (which isn't possible as most of the options are hidden). I have looked into editing the BIOS but the Pi 3525 doesn't actually have a BIOS in the traditional sense.

The BIOS (or rather, firmware) is called Phoenix SecureCore which is actually based on UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface). UEFI / EFI is the new generation of firmware which solves a lot of old legacy problems. Going into further details would be a bit beyond the scope of this post, but google is your friend if you want to know more.

Regardless, the Phoenix BIOS editor won't open this new type of firmware so we can't un-hide all the hidden options. Unfortunately I know of no other way to hide a device from the Linux kernel.

As I said though; I'm happy with a PAE enabled 32bit kernel. Everything seems to be working just fine and I can access the full 4GB of RAM (minus the 32MB of GFX memory of course). 64bit has no benefit for me.

Though I do hope that Fujitsu change their minds and correct the problem.


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