How I fixed my S1200BTL / Amber blink or on / Screen or graphic problem / BMC fix

How I fixed my S1200BTL / Amber blink or on / Screen or graphic problem / BMC fix, 9.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
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Before you start reading my story and doing it by your own you should really know what you’re doing. I’ll take no warranty if you damage your hardware!

I had a lot of issues with one of my home servers. In fact I was thinking of shipping it back. But finally after spending some time reading manuals I fixed it:

1.) My main issue was that I get “84F2 Baseboard Management Controller failed to respond”. The server sometimes took about 5-8 minutes before I get any screen output. (At that state four green LED’s are on / two in the up and two in the down).

2.) Aside from that I had some serious issues with the onboard video. Sometimes the output started “strange”. Sometimes stripes appeared then letters disappeared or switched to a total unreadable state which didn’t switch to readable again. So I thought that the problem must be the onboard graphic chip.

3.) Adding to that one status LED blink amber or sometimes stays on amber.

I took care of number 2 the easy way. I went to the malls and bought a PCIe graphics card and build it into my system. That worked well now my screen was readable all the time.

Then I started to read the intel manual (G13326-003_S1200BT_TPS_v1_0.pdf) in detail to take care of issue 1 and 3. I put the name of the PDF in there because there’re a lot of pdf’s that wouldn’t help in that case. E.g. the “Quickstart” provided by intel wouldn’t help you at all with that,…

I found out that the amber light + graphic output are connected in some way. They both come from the BMC chip. The BMC also regulates the FAN speed so if you’ve fans that spin at maximum speed it might also be fixed with my solution.

So I started taking a look at the jumpers and found:
J1E2: CMOS Clear
J1F2: ME Force Update
J1F1: Password Clear
J1F3: BIOS Recovery
J4A2: BMC Force Update

First of all I did a CMOS clear to be sure that my settings didn’t cause any of my issues.
Refer to the intel manual how to do it.

Then I set J4A2 and flashed my system with the newest firmeware by using a usb stick.
When you flash it you’ll be asked about your FAN settings and if you’ve several features. You should all answer it correctly otherwise the status LED will blink amber or stay on.
Aside from that be informed that CPU FAN & SYSFAN 4 must be installed.

After doing the restart my system seems to pass the 84F2 problem but the amber light stays blinking so I decided to use SELVIEWER

To use SELVIEWER you should download DOS SELVIEWER + make a bootable usbstick:

Make sure you’re working as administator and assume X: is the usb sticks drive letter
Delete all partitions on your stick
Create one primary partition and mark it as active
Format that partition using FAT32
syslinux\syslinux.exe -fma X:
xcopy usb-root\* X:\ /E/H/I
create a new folder and copy SELViewer.exe + needed SEL files in it
Reboot
press [Enter] at syslinux boot: prompt
double press [Enter] while your asked to change date and time
then navigate to your SELViewer folder and start selviewer
your done! have fun!
bootstick.zip

Thanks to:
http://goebelmeier.de/bootstick/
for providing the Freedos Image.

Finally I had SELVIEWER running and could check why the amber light is on.
I could see something like:

“FAN x32 getting lower”
“FAN x32 getting critical”
I don’t remember the exact term but was something like.
I removed some fans to find out which fas in x32,… The strange thing with it is that FAN x32 spined proper. Anyway I replaced him and that fixed the last issue.

Now I’ve a very fine system running without issues 🙂
Hope this post it helpful for someone else.

Have a nice day, thanks for reading!

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