Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

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hardwired
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Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

After moving my Mister from one location to the other, many cores stopped working correctly and now produce black screens / system halts. Nothing out of the ordinary happened when I moved it from one side of the room to the other, nor were any updates applied. After the problem emerged, I tried updating, reinstalling, using a different SD card, and a TON of different analog and digital monitors, different TVs, all to no avail at all.

The menu works, the OSD works (in most cases), but after selecting a core there's no picture. It looks like everything works correctly, like starting up and init the core, but then a sync error seems to emerge (although Minimig does not want to boot from HDD anymore). However, none of the screens/TVs I tried give a 'sync error' or 'signal not supported'. It just stays black. Some cores that still work are ao486, some of the Arcade cores, C16, Altair, the Coleco does, and some other really, really old systems I never use. Personal favourites C64 is black screen, and Minimig shows a red/blue garbled screen on startup when there's no saved configuration. Black screen and no HDD boot when there is. This happens on the original SD card, and on all other fresh reinstalls I've tried. Of the test tools the memory test works, the ADC test produces 2 yellow and green lines. No clue what it should do, but it seems to have stopped working also.

What the h... is this? :| Any suggestions?

Bas
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by Bas »

Did you try testing your sdram module?

hardwired
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

Hi Bas, thanks for the response.

Ran the memtest for about an hour. No reports, so no failure or pass. I don't know how long it's supposed to run. If an hour isn't enough, I will retry tomorrow and let it run till it stops.

Xbytez
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by Xbytez »

hardwired wrote: Thu Jan 18, 2024 4:58 pm

I don't know how long it's supposed to run. If an hour isn't enough.

The SDRAM test core has no end it will run for as long as you leave it, however an hour is plenty for testing purposes.

Post a screen capture of the memory test core after runnning for half an hour into the thread.

FPGA64
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by FPGA64 »

hardwired wrote: Thu Jan 18, 2024 11:26 am

After moving my Mister from one location to the other, many cores stopped working correctly and now produce black screens / system halts. Nothing out of the ordinary happened when I moved it from one side of the room to the other, nor were any updates applied. After the problem emerged, I tried updating, reinstalling, using a different SD card, and a TON of different analog and digital monitors, different TVs, all to no avail at all.

The menu works, the OSD works (in most cases), but after selecting a core there's no picture. It looks like everything works correctly, like starting up and init the core, but then a sync error seems to emerge (although Minimig does not want to boot from HDD anymore). However, none of the screens/TVs I tried give a 'sync error' or 'signal not supported'. It just stays black. Some cores that still work are ao486, some of the Arcade cores, C16, Altair, the Coleco does, and some other really, really old systems I never use. Personal favourites C64 is black screen, and Minimig shows a red/blue garbled screen on startup when there's no saved configuration. Black screen and no HDD boot when there is. This happens on the original SD card, and on all other fresh reinstalls I've tried. Of the test tools the memory test works, the ADC test produces 2 yellow and green lines. No clue what it should do, but it seems to have stopped working also.

What the h... is this? :| Any suggestions?

go down this list

https://mister-devel.github.io/MkDocs_M ... /computer/

if the core requires SDRAM and it doesnt show its a good indication its your ram.

antibolo
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by antibolo »

From the cores you mentioned it definitely sounds like the SDRAM is the culprit in some way or another.

hardwired
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

Everyone thanks for your time and input!

This morning I disassembled my MiSTer for first time since I got it last august (got it secondhand). Cleaned out the dust, and since many here suspected faulty SDRAM even though the tests seemed to run ok, I was tempted to take the RAM out, clean the connectors and reseat it. However, it was so firmly in it's (kinda alien looking) socket, I was too afraid to break something, so I just gently pressed it down. Then I ran another memtest and took a screenshot, as requested above. Unplugged the socket. Waited for some time. Then I started checking all cores using the list provided above. The first cores all worked, even the ones that need SDRAM. So I quickly tried my favourite C64, and OMG it works again. Unplugged it again, waited some more. Powered it up again, and it still works. All cores are running again.

Dunno if I should be happy or worried. If the SDRAM touch did the trick, how reliable is the board?

hardwired
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

It stopped working again. Guess I better replace the RAM. I noticed I can move the module around in the socket, it doesnt stay firmly in place. If i gently push it towards the casing, it just stays there. It isn't firmly perpendicular like DDR in PCs. Fiddling with it makes it work or breaks it.

I guess thats a problem?

Xbytez
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by Xbytez »

The memory is connected via a 40 pin header on the DE10-Nano, the SDRAM memory module will move as in rock backwards and forwards, as it is not connected like PC DDR memory.

I recommend you remove the SDRAM module and reseat a few times it on the 40 pin header as it may well just be a poor contact with one of the forked pins inside the SDRAM connector.

See the gif's here for how to remove and install, the gif's show an older style of memory module but the principle is the same.

https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/Wiki_Mi ... DRAM-Board

hardwired
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

Alright... so after I got it running twice for a while again, I decided to remove, clean and reseat it after checking the suggested URL above. Did so multiple times. Couldn't get it back up running again.

It still happily runs the memtest though. What do you guys think? Will a RAM replacement do the job? Or is it more likely the DE10 is faulty since the memtest is OK? :| It's a vertical module, any suggestions? Should I go for the v3.0 128MB if I decide to give the RAM replacement a try?

Edit: looking around for a potential replacement, on misterfpga dot co dot uk there's screenshot showing the memory test. The red numbers are all zero's. Is that what it is supposed to be? As I get random numbers all the time.

FPGA64
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by FPGA64 »

Its not running the memtest. You are just starting the memtest. Memtest will run even with no memory installed

This explains the memtest

https://github.com/MiSTer-devel/MemTest_MiSTer

At the very least we need a screenshot attached showing the screen after its run for 15 mins

FPGA64
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by FPGA64 »

hardwired wrote: Fri Jan 19, 2024 5:33 pm

Alright... so after I got it running twice for a while again, I decided to remove, clean and reseat it after checking the suggested URL above. Did so multiple times. Couldn't get it back up running again.

It still happily runs the memtest though. What do you guys think? Will a RAM replacement do the job? Or is it more likely the DE10 is faulty since the memtest is OK? :| It's a vertical module, any suggestions? Should I go for the v3.0 128MB if I decide to give the RAM replacement a try?

Edit: looking around for a potential replacement, on misterfpga dot co dot uk there's screenshot showing the memory test. The red numbers are all zero's. Is that what it is supposed to be? As I get random numbers all the time.

The red is the failure count. It counts in Hexadecimal. If thats anything other than 0 you have faulty ram

hardwired
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

Oh my, guess that's my reward for being lazy and expecting a profound error message and not looking up how it's supposed to work. When I run it, the red numbers are all over the place all the time. I thought those were just random test strings or something, and that an error message would pop up. Anyway, seems the RAM is indeed the culprit. Glad it's not expensive and available. Gonna order a replacement asap and hope for it to bring my beloved mister back to life.

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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by LamerDeluxe »

Odd that it failed so completely all of a sudden. Have you jiggled the switches on the DE-10? Sometimes they fail to make good contact over time.

The 128MB 3.0 module would be a good choice, older versions apparently have more of a chance to have audio problems with the Saturn core.

hardwired
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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by hardwired »

LamerDeluxe, no I didn't jiggle the switches on the DE-10.

I got my replacement module in the mail the other day, put it in and it's a much better fit than the other one. This module is nice and upright and very firm in place, much unlike the old one. I can't move this one around. Ran a memtest for over an hour, and played games all evening yesterday. Very happy to have a happy Mister again.

Like I said, I got it second hand, I suspect the previous owner kinda messed up when assembling the unit. It was a v2.9 module.

Thank you all for your time and help!

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Re: Many Cores Suddenly Not Working?

Unread post by LamerDeluxe »

Glad to hear that you got it all working perfectly now! Sounds like the old memory module indeed had some mechanical problems, that could explain it. Enjoy your MiSTer!

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