Shuttle AK31 .. good board? Linux good?

smp

Diamond Member
Dec 6, 2000
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Just want to know opinions on this board... I have heard that you can do software raid w/ linux, I'm interested in mirroring two drives for the sake of redundancy and would like to do this with this board .. if I get it, which all depends on the feedback I'm about to get from you all :)
Thanks.
 

poopaskoopa

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2000
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I didn't do any software raid, but my PC with AK31 worked fine with Mandrake 8.1 and RH 7.2. The chipset fan died in 4 months...
 

RaiderJ

Diamond Member
Apr 29, 2001
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I don't have any experience with the RAID aspect of this board, but a machine I built around it is still working good 6 months after I built it.
 

Workin'

Diamond Member
Jan 10, 2000
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I've built dozens of machines around the AK31A and haven't had a single problem other than failed chipset fans - which you don't need anyway. On all my recent builds I just disconnect the fan before I deliver the machine to the client. My main workstation uses an AK31A and is on 24/7, the chipset fan has been unplugged since before Christmas with no problems.

Red Hat 7.2 works fine on it, haven't tried any other Linux distros on that board.
 

squeezix

Junior Member
May 1, 2002
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Don't know anything about Linux RAID, but the Shuttle AK31 v3.1 board is *junk*. There are the well-known problems it has with tolerating having any memory plugged into it. In my case, after two weeks of solid work I gave up on ever getting more than a single DIMM to work reliably. This despite using exactly the same hardware configuration as one of its reviewers. Who had no trouble.

Beyond that, it's less well known that Shuttle used -cheesy- sockets for the memory, and perhaps also for the PCI slots. My own evidence: - after many experiments, got suspicious of the slots - took out the single DIMM - carefully blew any possible dust out of the slot, and visually inspected- carefully seated the DIMM, making absolutely sure it's seated properly - ran the machine - it crashed again within a minute - took out the DIMM *again* - carefully blew any possible dust out of the slot again - carefully seated the DIMM again, making absolutely sure it's seated properly - ran the machine again - machine runs fine. The second time. Had a similar experience with the PCI slots, although my evidence was less "smoking".

*Avoid* this card. *Avoid* Shuttle Technologies.

YMMV

Garry

PS - I bought the board because it could handle 4 DIMMs, unlike all the competition. I now know: when a motherboard manufacturer does something different than all the competition, but using the same chipset, BE WARY.
 

ST4RCUTTER

Platinum Member
Feb 13, 2001
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For a budget board ($67) that supports a plethora of overclocking features it's hard to beat. The chipset fan needs to be replaced on nearly every one, and it's true that populating all DIMMS rarely works. Only the ECS K7S5A ($54) comes close in price, but it has virtually no overclocking options.

And just a word to the wise. Shuttle rebrands boards made by ECS...
 

filmore crashcart

Senior member
Dec 18, 1999
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Bought my ak31a when it first appeared on NewEgg when the first 266a boards arrived...... however long ago that was. It has worked flawlessly since that time and the chipset fan is still working on it. I'll be putting a xp2000 in it by this weekend.
 

squeezix

Junior Member
May 1, 2002
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The mind shudders at the thought of trying to overclock this fragile board... I just put a bid in on eBay for an Abit KR7A with which to replace it. So I can have the pleasure of breaking the Shuttle into small pieces and putting them into the trash. The KR7A also has lots of known problems. But maybe I'll be one of the lucky ones and my machine will boot and maybe even my 4 DIMMs will work in it. And maybe I'll win the lottery (despite not entering) and maybe pigs will fly and maybe ...

Garry
 

Workin'

Diamond Member
Jan 10, 2000
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squeezix, sorry you've had such problems. As I said earlier, I haven't had that experience using literally dozens of AK31A's in almost every configuration under the sun. My personal system has all 4 DIMM slots populated with 256MB Crucial DIMMs and works flawlessly with an AthlonXP 2000+ and Windows XP Pro. I've built several others with 3 slots filled, again with no problems.

My guess is you got ONE bad board - NO manufacturer ships 100% perfect boards, EVERY brand has occasional flakes and failures. And running to Abit as a solution is pretty funny.

<< Shuttle rebrands boards made by ECS... >>

That's a little misleading - that implies ECS designs and manufactures the boards while in fact they they only do the manufacturing under contract, Shuttle does the engineering. Any factory can solder boards together - it's the engineering that matters.
 

foofoo

Golden Member
Mar 5, 2001
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my experience is also different than squeezix. i've built 8 systems with this boards and have had zero problems. runs great under redhat 7.2 and though i've usually only populated 2 dimm sockets in the builds, i've never had a memory problem. in my opinion, this is a great board. and workin is right. the engineering and board layout are done by shuttle. ecs just handles manufacturing.
smp, i dont have any experience using the linux software raid, but the board should be just fine.
hope this helps.
 

Zebo

Elite Member
Jul 29, 2001
39,398
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Any factory can solder boards together - it's the engineering that matters. toot toot;)

Anyway, I have 3 of these boards and, as others have mentioned , I have taken off the fan because of high pitched noise to no ill effects...

My comps are used in a very dusty and chemical rich enviroment and no probelms very stable with XP.
 

smp

Diamond Member
Dec 6, 2000
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Any factory can solder boards together - it's the engineering that matters

I know that the engineering is the most important .. but don't take too much weight off of the soldering. That almost implies that a room full of monkeys could manufacture a good board, if only the engineers were on top!

Anyways, I ended up getting a Abit KT7A (which I'm waiting on right now) off of FS/FT .. cause I like that board and I have SDRAM already :)
Thanks all.
 

Workin'

Diamond Member
Jan 10, 2000
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<< I know that the engineering is the most important .. but don't take too much weight off of the soldering. That almost implies that a room full of monkeys could manufacture a good board, if only the engineers were on top! >>

Engineers like to be on top ;)

Monkeys practically could solder a board together - machines do the actual placement of components and soldering. All the monkey would have to do is make sure the parts bins are full of the right parts (so maybe they'd have to be chimpanzees rather than baboons) and push the "start" button. It's not like there's a big room full of expert solderers painstakingly placing all those surface-mount components on each board by hand.

Good luck with your new board, it's nice that you don't have to buy new memory.