View Full Version : What does "AGP (PCI Mode)" mean?
12-18-2003, 03:36 AM
I recently upgraded (nobody laugh!) from a NVIDIA TNT2 card to the NVIDIA GeForce 2 MX/MX400. (Hey, I got it for free, and it WAS an upgrade.) I don't recall seeing this with my TNT2 card, but with my GeForce card plugged in, when I click the "Advanced" button on my Display Properties "Settings" page, and then click on "Adaptor" and "Properties" it tells the card is located in a PCI bus slot, even though it's plugged into an AGP slot. When I click on the "GeForce 2 MX/MX400" tab installed by the Nvidia drivers, it tells me the "Bus type" is "AGP (PCI Mode)".
Does anyone know why my OS (Windows 2000, service pack 3) is registering my GeForce 2 as being in "PCI Mode" or whether or not that means anything as far as the effectiveness of the card (or my computer performance) is concerned? Thanks for your replies.
My system (very below average, but it's what I've got right now):
AMD 800 mhz
GeForce 2 MX/MX400 64MB (latest drivers)
12-18-2003, 05:49 AM
The MX400 is available in PCI, so it may be a result of the manufacturer having made identical cards with different connectors.
If you had it in a PCI slot and it said this, I wouldn't be surprised.
You do say you recently upgraded though, and you have an AMD board - have you tried re-installing any Via 4-in-1 drivers or the latest 4-in-1 drivers or other motherboard drivers which do have a bearing on AGP support???
Incidentally, how did you get 294Mb RAM :-eek???
12-18-2003, 03:22 PM
Actually, the motherboard (I just discovered in a late-night hardware disassembling party) is an ASUS A7V, and I did find a more recent BIOS version for it, but am not sure I have the courage to attempt the update without someone more technically-minded present.
I'm not sure how Windows is picking up 294MB (or 294,368 KB) in my System properties. I have 3 DIMM slots, holding 2 128MB cards, and a 32MB cards, for a total of 288MB. Not exactly sure where the extra 6MB are being reported from.
12-18-2003, 05:43 PM
By AMD board I meant it's Socket/Slot A, in which case you may have a Via chipset or similar. The Via 4-in-1 drivers or whatever came on the CD with your motherboard may have to be reinstalled for the board to realise it has this particular card.
BIOS is another route which may have a bearing on it. I don't envy you flashing it! See if Asus do a 'Live Update' program in the same vein as Gigabyte, that way you just follow the prompts and let it run.
12-18-2003, 06:06 PM
AGP stands for Advance Graphics Port, motherboards come with only one of these. The AGP port sits a bit back from the PCI ports (white) and it is also different in color (brown). If you currently have both cards installed, then your older card was a PCI card. If the older card would sit in the same slot as the newer card, then it was an AGP card.
12-18-2003, 07:02 PM
My old card was an AGP, and my new one is as well. I downloaded the 4-in-1 drivers from their website (don't have the original CD) and tried installing the AGP drivers, but that didn't make any difference. (I'm not sure I have the VIA chipset the downloaded drivers were designed for.) But I think I've decided that I'm fine with a PCI-mode card for the moment. At least it's preferable to crashing my entire system by doing a flash upgrade without really knowing what I'm doing.
12-19-2003, 07:50 AM
Doing a BIOS update can be benign or a disaster. Two things to be careful; power outage during the time of update, not clearing the C-MOS memory after the update.
If you intent to update, make sure you either copy all the present BIOS settings or use the MOBO manual and check the settings and any that are different from the manual. After you update, there may be new settings that you may have to guess.
Visit http://www.rojakpot.com/ , free area and review all the BIOS settings.
12-20-2003, 05:06 PM
First off, I really can't answer the AGP question, either you're alright or there is something in the BIOS or drivers were set up out of sequence. ie: Via Drivers, DirectX, then Video drivers in that order. Secondly, your system properties is reporting correctly. 1 Meg is 1024 KBs. Therefore 288 Megs x 1024 KBs = 294912. The numbers between yours and this one are slightly off, but, I don't really understand why 2000 would report the video card memory with the standard memory. I just don't understand 2000..lol
12-21-2003, 05:23 PM
Well, I got it fixed. For some odd reason it's still showing up as "PCI bus" in the Display Properties/Advanced/Adapter Type/Properties window, but when I click on the GeForce 2 MX/MX400 tab, it's properly reading as "AGP 4x" instead of "AGP (PCI mode)" now.
I'm not sure exactly what made the difference. I went through a few things, including more extensive research on my motherboard model and chipset (Asus A7V / VIA Apollo KT133 chipset), and then finding and installing the necessary drivers. But I stopped short of flashing or upgrading my BIOS. That's a step I am glad I can postpone until I decide to upgrade my CPU.
With that done, I rebooted in safe mode and removed all NVIDIA drivers, rebooted, and then used "Nasty File Remover" (http://rudz.homepage.dk/nfr) and Detonator-RIP (http://www.guru3d.com/detonator-rip) to remove all existing traces of the NVIDIA files and registry entries. Then I rebooted again and manually extracted the 53.03 drivers so that I could point the "Found New Hardware" wizard to the driver location manually.
I also discovered one very interesting article that seemed to address my problem exactly (even down to my motherboard and chipset model) and I implemented that fix as well. Here's the article: http://www.tweaktown.com/document.php?dType=guide&dId=68. If you download the 4x.reg file, it adds the Dword value in the "nv4/device0" key, but I noticed on my machine I had to enter the value in the "nv/device0" key.
But I'm not sure which of the three made the final difference. It could have just been one of these steps, or two, or all three. But at this point I don't care anymore. (I've seen too many reboot screens in the past couple of days.) What matters is that all my time and effort (and this great forum that pointed me in the right direction) has paid off. Both the Nvidia drivers and SiSoft Sandra are picking up the card as being in AGPx4 mode, and I'm able to turn up almost all hardware settings to their max (except anti-aliasing) with minimal effect on FS frame rate or performance.
The one odd thing right now, which only happened AFTER installing the Nvidia drivers, is that SiSoft Sandra reports that I DO have "Fast Writes Support" but that I DON'T have "Fast Writes Enabled"--but in my BIOS, I DID enable Fast Writes. (And before I installed the Nvidia drivers, SiSoft Sandra properly reported that Fast Writes WERE enabled!) I'm not sure if that will affect performance much, but maybe that's an NVIDIA driver bug, since it only changed after the drivers were installed. Or maybe I'll come across another great article like the one above about this specific problem. The internet is a wonderful place.
Merry Christmas, y'all!
12-22-2003, 07:26 AM
All Fast Writing does is allow certain code to go direct to the video card from the CPU without milling around the rest of the system.
Not all games allow for it anyway so it's quite hit and miss as to what is processed this way or not. If things are now fine, leave it enabled unless you get any problems.
12-23-2003, 12:36 PM
Fast writing is recommended by many manufacturers to be set to disabled.
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