Thanks to Raja@ASUS, StackOverflow13, BillyRay520 and others for input, suggestions and support.
Some ASUS motherboard users (me included) started observing an odd phenomenon when leaving AIDA64 EE sensor monitoring program turned on and running for more than 1 hour at idle, the system could unexpectedly shut down forcefully (like someone held a power button) or suddenly restart (like someone pressed reset button), no BSOD is produced in both scenarios.
This may happen at stock system or overclocked. Furthermore, when system unexpectedly shuts down during such incident the user will notice that power button becomes unresponsive and there is no way to power the system up again until the power is cut to Power Supply.
How to replicate this:
1. Utilizing ASUS motherboard (confirmed on P8Z77 V PRO series and Maximus V series) with BIOS updated to revision containing some newer Windows 8 stability improvements (above 704 on MVE).
2. Ai Suite (versions up to V2.01.01) was installed including the Fan Xpert 2 module at some point in time, application might have been completely uninstalled at later time or left installed and not running, doesn't matter.
3. Running AIDA64 EE (tested up to beta 2.70.2260 with active ATKEX sensor polling) with Sensor Monitoring tab opened and sensor polling left active.
4. After e.g. 1-2 hours of idle the system will encounter a problem on electrical level causing an instant restart or shutdown (with further inability to power up until power is cut to the Power Supply). No BSOD is produced when this happens. It is confirmed at stock BIOS settings (tested personally with 1501 & 1604 MVE BIOS) straight from Clear CMOS or Loading Optimized Defaults, observed on both Windows 7 x64 Pro SP1 and Windows 8 x64 Pro, also reported by others to happen on any BIOS revision above 704 for MVE, and others similar for different models (e.g. MVF, P8Z77 V Pro running 1805, etc.).
After severe testing performed in this thread, it was found that the culprit is within the service called "ASUS HM COM" which gets installed together with Ai Suite. Nothing will go wrong if Fan Xpert 2 module was never installed, then this service stays harmless.
However after installation of Fan Xpert 2 module, this service and possibly two other ASUS services called ASUS COM Service & ASUS System Control Service start conflicting with AIDA64 and eventually it causes the unexpected system behavior leading to result looking like a near hardware failure (e.g. faulty Power Supply or damaged processor or bad motherboard).
Scenarios and workarounds:
1) On a system never allow to install Fan Xpert module (you can use Ai Suite's other components) or avoid the whole Ai Suite in general
2) if Fan Xpert module was ever installed then your system stays affected even after complete uninstallation of whole Ai Suite! Please follow the below outlines to fix the problem without re-installation of OS.
The reason is that the service ASUS HM COM stays left behind and running on your system even after complete uninstallation of Ai Suite (nice touch, isn't it?), you can either manually disable this service (e.g. via Computer Management) or remove it all together. Installation of Fan Xpert does something to those ASUS Service(s) and that's when the problem appears for the first time (and stays even after Ai Suite uninstall, because those services are left behind).
To remove the ASUS services manually after Ai Suite uninstallation:
1) open the elevated Command Prompt with admin rights
2) type below commands and hit enter after each one:
NOTE: removing all 3 services will disable ROG OC Key and possibly also other ASUS software (ROG Connect, etc.), the software for it will need to be re-installed or should be uninstalled before applying the fix.Code:NET STOP ASHMCOMSVC SC DELETE ASHMCOMSVC NET STOP ASCOMSVC SC DELETE ASCOMSVC NET STOP ASSYSCTRLSERVICE SC DELETE ASSYSCTRLSERVICE
NOTE2: You can download a batch file with above commands from here
After download, use it by r-clicking and selecting Run As Administrator and follow simple instructions on screen to continue.
Alternatively you can use automated tool to do this for you:
unofficial Ai Suite cleaner tool (thanks to BillyRay520's post, link to tool here - signup required)
3) If you plan on ever installing any components of AI Suite again on affected system you NEED to uninstall all traces of it before re-installation or the problem will come back. Also I suggest uninstalling ROG OC Key at this point too (uses 2 out of 3 ASUS services) as outlined above (full uninstall and removal of services).
if for any reason normal uninstallation of Ai Suite fails, then you can run REVO Uninstaller Pro (get it for free here) and let it scan system for all traces of Ai Suite and remove them from everywhere (files, registry, everywhere)
... then install the desired components of Ai Suite (except for Fan Xpert!!!), restart your system and pray to digital gods the problem is gone
*4) There seems to be slight in difference in how this bug manifests itself on non-UEFI booted systems vs UEFI booted systems (it's confirmed on 2 different MVE boards and different components):
a) non-UEFI/Legacy Boot: most of the time system will perform an unexpected shutdown (no BSOD) on its own at idle and won't be able to power up agan, the power button will become unresponsive, the PSU needs to get cycled to restore working condition.
b) UEFI Boot: system will perform an unexpected shutdown (no BSOD) on its own at idle and shortly after it will power up again on its own like nothing happened.
This problem was reported to AIDA64 developer Fiery, hopefully they can compensate in their software code for this odd behavior.
here's the Bug Report in AIDA forums:
This problem was also reported to ASUS VIP technical support, case ID RWTM201301161127303846-391.
It would be also nice if ASUS pulled their things together and more thoroughly tested what they release to public, nobody likes dirty uninstallers that leave lots of potentially harmful stuff behind. Ignoring the problem won't help solving the issue and will leave plenty of unsatisfied customers running affected systems.
*** Original post as it was initially ***
At first a little rant on recent BIOSes for MVE.
I can't say I like recent MVE BIOSes after introduction of ROG Exchange (1309, 1408, 1501) - all of them seem to have occasional issues with corrupted multiplier settings after a while (Clear CMOS fixes it for some time until crashed/bad OC and then problems start growing until another Clear CMOS).
also some other settings sometimes get reverted to default during restart (e.g. most annoying Internal PLL gets disabled, some CPU Power settings reverted to auto, memory Ai reverted to auto, Digi+ reverted to default), that happens mostly after failed overclocking, but I have seen that also at high clocks on 3770K when running 5.1 and 5.2GHz for no real reason. sometimes the multiplier just doesn't kick in and stays where it was the last time.
Lastly, all of those BIOSes (especially after a crashed OC) cause some CMOS settings corruption when Load Defaults (F5) is used. generally some junk settings get loaded and no matter what I set in BIOS, the BIOS shows one thing and does other thing at boot up - easy to double check when Windows boots up actually and you can see voltages and CPU multiplier in there). E.g. I set 5.0GHz (50x multi) with known good offset and discover my system running at 3.9GHz with quite another voltage (neither a stock setting). again, clearing CMOS fixes it (for some time).
However, this post is about potential BIOS conflict with the latest version of AIDA64 EE software running in background and BIOS 1501 (issue replicated a few times). Whatever you read below, please note it does NOT happen on BIOS 704.
So, I am running my daily OC on 3770K @ 4.9GHz, running 75% LLC and 0.185 offset (by the way BIOS 704 can do same stable with 0.175 offset while 1501 can't), everything perfectly stable, my system runs 24/7 for 2 weeks. Then I decided to run AIDA64 in background for sensor monitoring and leave my computer over night (as always) turned on.
In morning I find it shut down, so I press the power button and nothing happens. After I cycled the PSU off and after a few secs to on position I can use the Power Button to boot up as normal (all works), with aida64 in background. Then I use the computer for several hours gaming, browsing net, watching movies, listening to music, etc and leave it as always on. again after a while it shuts down on its own and can't power up (until I cycle the rocker switch on PSU). once it shut down at idle (in same manner) while I left it alone for only 15 minutes, literally shortly after the monitor went to sleep (standby) and of course again the Power Button was unresponsive until the PSU rocker switch was cycled.
I have seen this behavior half a dozen times until I found out that it was running AIDA64 in background what triggers it. But going further I noticed that running BIOS 704 (and AIDA64 in background) causes no issues what so ever. what gives ... bugged BIOS 1501 (and potentially 1309 & 1408)?
Can anybody else replicate this?