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yesterday I built up a new system containing a Supermicro X8DT3-LN4F mainboard and an Intel Core i7-920 CPU with 2x2 GB DDR3 RAM. Each time I power it on, the fans begin to work but I won't get any video on the onboard VGA output (enabled by jumper setting).

The manual is no help either, they just tell me to check the BIOS POST beeps, but that one I receive (twice short, pause, once short) is not listed in "Appendix A".

I hope someone can help me...

Kind regards, Manuel

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I'm not an expert with Xeons these days, but don't Nehalem based Xeons require RAM in pairs of 3 not 2? The newer Nehalem based boards require memory to be installed in a very specific order with specific requirements (registered, ECC, etc. etc.). I would check the arrangement of your DIMMs in accordance with how many CPUs you have installed with the manual. Just my first guess.

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First at all, thanks for this damn fast reply. :-) As you might know, I'm no hardware guru at all although I'm some kind of software engineer. Nevertheless, well, this server should become my new home server (what might be a little bit oversized, but I still want to run ESXi for some reason). I bought this mainboard because of the ESXi support for the onboard LAN NICs and I thought I could use any 1366 socket CPU. I'm not sure, if the Intel Core i7 is a "Nehalem base Xeon" but I now understand why the manual just shows 3 or 6 DIMMs per CPU. Do you think that board and CPU work well together? – Delinquent Jul 23 '09 at 18:01
Ok, Wikipedia says the Core i7 IS Nehalem based, but I can't find anything about 3 DIMMs minimum (at least on the german wiki page). – Delinquent Jul 23 '09 at 18:24
Odds are yes. Server level equipment is designed specifically for CPUs and specific RAM. You can't really deviate outside of their requirements. They're not like consumer-level computers where you can mix and match parts. Servers are typically built for stability and that requires better parts. Plus, most server level boards have 2 or more NICs onboard so this specific board isn't exactly a unique find for ESXi. But if you're set on virtualizing (and who isn't?), I recommend looking into Citrix XenServer 5.5 and XenCenter as well. They're both free like ESXi, stable and easy to manage. – osij2is Jul 23 '09 at 18:25
Not a unique find for ESXi, but a unique one for my salary. :-) Well, in a nutshell you mean board and CPU are ok, but either the memory at all won't work or there are to less DIMMs? – Delinquent Jul 23 '09 at 18:35
While wikipedia doesn't explicitly say anything about a 3 DIMM minimum, the Supermicro Manual (page 2-8) shows seating the DIMMs in pairs of 3. The DIMM Module Population Configuration clearly shows Ranks per DIMM in combination with the channel and speed. Follow this chart very carefully. Find out exactly what type of RAM DIMMs you have and stick to the manual. – osij2is Jul 23 '09 at 18:39

I wonder if perhaps it's not beeping two different codes. One short, and then two short. If so these are both memory error codes in an AMI bios which that board uses. As osij2is mentioned, you should check your memory. Glancing over the specs it looks like you need ECC (registered or unbuffered).

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Hmm. From my point of view the manual is not a good one, so I don't even know if it's possible that it's beeping two codes at a time. In fact, I'm not sure if it's beeping at all, what means: It's no beeping like you know it from DOS times, it is more some kind of "click" sound like it is produces by some systems if you hold down a key on startup. All POST sounds I know are real beeps, those ain't, but nevertheless I interpret them as short beeps. By the way: My ram is 2x2 GB DDR3 1333 MHz ECC CL9 DIMM – Delinquent Jul 23 '09 at 18:12

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