A06 Aurora/Area-51 Command Center

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A06 Aurora/Area-51 Command Center

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  • Day two - Some observations / problems / work-around

    I found out that if you create a new profile in the active thermals and venting area and save it the next time you boot from a cold start the control center software will give totally wrong data and be non-functional. Temperatures were all reading either 0 C or 65 C, some icons representative device such as "display heat pump" which does not exist on the desktops, nothing was right. A reboot ( warm-start ) did not help.

    To overcome this problem I ran the A06 upgade again and tried using the repair option, that did not work. To get back to square one I had to run the A06 update, select the remove option, reboot and run a fresh install.

    Conclusion: After installing the A06 upgrade don't change anything, just leave it alone until some day they get a version that works OK. The only exception to this is that using the "go dark" option in the system tray does not cause any problems.

    A06 is better than what we had previously but has a long way to go before it is functional as advertised.

    One last note: I discovered that the unknown USB device in the device manager is a "usb composite device" but I have no idea of what it is used for.

    Lastly, other than this on-going problem with the command center the machine is fantastic, too bad that it is going to get a bad reputation as long as this problem continues.

    P.S. Excuse all the typos, my secretary is on vacation. 

    Roy Berger

  • edit: Threads combined, deleting duplicate

     

     

    System: Alienware Area-51: Core i7 920 @ 3.2 Ghz, OS:  Corsair Force Series GS Red 480GB; Data: 2x 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor in RAID0 (OS/Games), RAM: CORSAIR DOMINATOR 12GB (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1600; Video: ATI 5970 + 5870

    Displays: HP zr30w + Dell U2410 + Dell 2709W 27"

    Peripherals: Belkin n52te, Logitech Driving Force Pro, Logitech G9, Alienware TactX Keyboard, TactX headset, PS3 Dual-Shock3 controller (using MotionJoy)

     

  • radar124

    I have been reading the post, This is my 2nd machine, I sent the first one back when It had the problems with the lights not going off at shutdown.  Now I see there is a fix by downloading a06  is that correct ?  Thanks for any help you can give....

    jeff

    It fixed most of the problems, but I'm still having the light on issue about 40% of the time.  I did 10 cold starts in a row without booting into the OS, and here are my results (copied from my other thread):

     

    • 4 times the Alien head light stayed on ... If I unplugged the power cable, it went out after 5 seconds.  
    • 1 time the fan was surged at full power the entire time, the rest of the time it idled down after 30 seconds during BIOS post
    • 1 time the vent stayed half open, the rest of the time it closed

     

    This is odd since the software is not involved.  I think there are larger issues that hopefully firmware can fix in the future.

    I don't see anything unknown in device manager, but I haven't been checking, honestly.  I'll keep an eye out.

    Most things seem normal now, it is just odd that I have had the light stay on a couple of times on shutdown, and I can't put my system to sleep anymore ...  I pretend it doesn't happy and do something else ...

     

    System: Alienware Area-51: Core i7 920 @ 3.2 Ghz, OS:  Corsair Force Series GS Red 480GB; Data: 2x 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor in RAID0 (OS/Games), RAM: CORSAIR DOMINATOR 12GB (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1600; Video: ATI 5970 + 5870

    Displays: HP zr30w + Dell U2410 + Dell 2709W 27"

    Peripherals: Belkin n52te, Logitech Driving Force Pro, Logitech G9, Alienware TactX Keyboard, TactX headset, PS3 Dual-Shock3 controller (using MotionJoy)

     

  • vvaldez

    I'm definitely having a new issue now.  I cannot put my system in mode anymore.  This is typically the only way shutdown, since the boot takes so long.

    Now when I hit sleep, the screen blacks for just second, then pops back up.  I can try several times with the same result.

    If I then choose "Shutdown" a "Microsoft .NET Framework" window pops up but it is faded out, as if it is locked up.  Windows then tells me that a program is preventing shutdown, so I force it to shutsdown.

    The only thing that changed on my system was upgrading this Command Center.  I also noticed after it shutdown that the Alien head light in front was still on, but the vents were closed.  This leads me to believe it is certainly a Command Center issue.  I'll try reinstalling it again later today.  The light being on is only when I try to go to sleep first.

    Anybody else have issues going into sleep mode after this update?

    Sorry to hear you are having that issue, vvaldez.  When I hit sleep, it does go into sleep mode.  The alien head on the front pulses the yellowish (default) color, and the white power button light blinks.  Previously, the default front panel colors remained on, just like they did when powering off.  I did note two things:

    1.  If the vents are open when I hit sleep, they remain open (and this could be the desired default behavior).

    2.  When waking from sleep, certain USB devices seem to "cycle" on and off (for example, my mouse is responsive, then not, then responsive, then not, then finally normal).

  • thank you... I think I will live with this problem until  and IF Dell has a fix.  I leave my machine running 24X7 anyway and everything else works fine.  I'm now sorry I sent back the first machine, no need to do it.  Anyway I think all the people with the problem shoud contact Dell and ask for their warrantys to be extended as a courtesy to the people having this problem, or at the very least a good discount on the 2nd and 3rd year cost of the warranty.. Again  thanks 

     

    Jeff

  • DMiannay

    Chrds

    Hello,

    I attach myself to this sorrowful group. My brand new Area 51 has the same problems and symptoms as the rest., with zero temprature readings and fans at full blast. Following the suggested workaround did not work.

    Chris-M, any new knowledge on when a solution is at hand?

    I assume it is not dangerous to use the machine - even if it is very annoying with all the noise?

     Christian

     

    Christian,

    There's another fix that I worked out with the Alienware Tech Support guys in Costa Rica.  However, in my case the Area-51 was losing it's USB connection with the MIO card that controls all the Command Center functions.  As an aside, you might check your device manager to see if there's an "Unknown USB Device" splat.

    In any event, the fix that always works for me is as follows:

    1.  Uninstall Command Center
    2.  Reboot to ensure all the cruft is cleared out
    3.  Reinstall the latest Command Center version currently on Dell's Support Site
    4.  Shutdown the PC and pull the power chord for 30 seconds
    5.  Plug in the power chord and restart the PC.
    6.  Your Command Center functions should now be working properly; and if you had one, the Unknown USB Device splat should have disappeared from Device Manager.

    Give it a shot but YMMV.

    I am anxiously awaiting the fix from Dell.

     

     

    Thank you very much for your words of wisdom, you helped me recover my tower (Case lights and fans aren't running full speed).

     

    I tried the update because of the light staying on after shutting down but it wouldn't let me do anything with the tower....ie no lights, fans full speed and top fins remained closed. After spending a couple of hours to try to at least restore it to the way it was, your post was of great help. Thanks again.

     

    Paul

  • Ok, well I no longer have the fan at full power issue but now I have no lights at all.  I hope dell continues to work on this.

  • Is everybody else able to go into sleep?  After this update if I hit sleep, it just goes black then comes back, and the alienware icon goes away.  From there if I hit shutdown, the "Microsoft .NET Framework" always comes up locked up.  If I try to open Command Center after this, it just goes to a black screen with an icon in the center like it is trying to open it, but I have to alt-tab and kill it.  Full shutdown forced works.

     

    System: Alienware Area-51: Core i7 920 @ 3.2 Ghz, OS:  Corsair Force Series GS Red 480GB; Data: 2x 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor in RAID0 (OS/Games), RAM: CORSAIR DOMINATOR 12GB (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1600; Video: ATI 5970 + 5870

    Displays: HP zr30w + Dell U2410 + Dell 2709W 27"

    Peripherals: Belkin n52te, Logitech Driving Force Pro, Logitech G9, Alienware TactX Keyboard, TactX headset, PS3 Dual-Shock3 controller (using MotionJoy)

     

  • Hi Vvaldez

    You mentioned the following:

    vvaldez

    Now when I hit sleep, the screen blacks for just second, then pops back up.  I can try several times with the same result.

    It really sounded the same as I described with my sleep problem eg that you have other hardware devices running.

    Win7 made the home networking a lot easier and joining a home group is easier. Due to that and I guess mainly the sleep setting and functionality of being waken by external devices (Network card / ports) it will wake up if you have another PC turned on on the network. It might also turn on if you have XBO 360 / PS3 connected to the Network and turned on (and potentially linked to the media centre). For how to switch this off have a look at one of my earlier posts.

    It also might be still a fault with the software. I have no problems so far with either shutdown or sleep since installing A06.

    Cheers

    RF

  • RetoF

    It really sounded the same as I described with my sleep problem eg that you have other hardware devices running.

    Thanks, I'm sure it can be a number of things, that's why I was asking around.  

    However, over the last month I've put my system to sleep daily, never had an issue.  It was immediately after upgrading to A06 that this happens.  Also the fact that the "Microsoft .NET Framework" is locking up and causing Command Center to crash tells me it is definitely something here.  This was the only system on in my house last night, and I don't use media center.  If it is a device, can anyone suggest how to find that out?  I mean, is there a log or anything that lists the device potentially causing this?

    Since not many other people are reporting this same behavior, it could very well be something else, maybe related to .NET.  I'll spend some time trying to figure it out.

    In the end, it isn't a major concern - I just have to shutdown for now.  The real pain is that now it takes a couple of minutes to have a usable system (see my slow boot thread), instead of a few seconds.

     

    System: Alienware Area-51: Core i7 920 @ 3.2 Ghz, OS:  Corsair Force Series GS Red 480GB; Data: 2x 300GB Western Digital VelociRaptor in RAID0 (OS/Games), RAM: CORSAIR DOMINATOR 12GB (3 x 4GB) DDR3 1600; Video: ATI 5970 + 5870

    Displays: HP zr30w + Dell U2410 + Dell 2709W 27"

    Peripherals: Belkin n52te, Logitech Driving Force Pro, Logitech G9, Alienware TactX Keyboard, TactX headset, PS3 Dual-Shock3 controller (using MotionJoy)

     

  • To get the light to go out right click on the "Alien Head" in the hidden icons of the system tray and toggle between "Enable Alien FX" and "Go Dark". Once you are in "Go Dark" mode the lights will turn on during the boot process and go out after windows is finished loading.

    Roy Berger

  • RetoF

    Hi Vvaldez

    You mentioned the following:

    vvaldez

    Now when I hit sleep, the screen blacks for just second, then pops back up.  I can try several times with the same result.

    It really sounded the same as I described with my sleep problem eg that you have other hardware devices running.

    Win7 made the home networking a lot easier and joining a home group is easier. Due to that and I guess mainly the sleep setting and functionality of being waken by external devices (Network card / ports) it will wake up if you have another PC turned on on the network. It might also turn on if you have XBO 360 / PS3 connected to the Network and turned on (and potentially linked to the media centre). For how to switch this off have a look at one of my earlier posts.

    It also might be still a fault with the software. I have no problems so far with either shutdown or sleep since installing A06.

    Cheers

    RF

    I am using the A06 Caommand Center but  have set my sleep option via the Power Opteion in the Control Panel. This is working well for me.

    Roy Berger

  • Day 3.

    The A06 is working well, I have left all of the setting at their defaults with the exception that I implemented the "god dark" mode via the system tray. In addition, I use the "Power options" in the "Control Panel" to set-up  "sleep mode" instead of using the Alien Fusion setting in the control panel. This method works well.

    Fans function properly. Vents open to 50% and close after "shut down", not exactly as per the command center settings but easy enough to live with. Lights go out after Windows is finished loading as per the "go dark" setting previously selected via the alien head icon in the sytem tray.

    Not perfect but very workable.

    P.S I note that the A06 upgrade also upgraded the Bios to A03. A pleasant suprise!

    Regards,
    Roy Berger

  • 0k I have an aroura not alx version.  I was able to get my lights working again by uninstalling a06 and reinstalling a05.

  • Pwyur

    DMiannay

    Chrds

    Hello,

    I attach myself to this sorrowful group. My brand new Area 51 has the same problems and symptoms as the rest., with zero temprature readings and fans at full blast. Following the suggested workaround did not work.

    Chris-M, any new knowledge on when a solution is at hand?

    I assume it is not dangerous to use the machine - even if it is very annoying with all the noise?

     Christian

    Christian,

    There's another fix that I worked out with the Alienware Tech Support guys in Costa Rica.  However, in my case the Area-51 was losing it's USB connection with the MIO card that controls all the Command Center functions.  As an aside, you might check your device manager to see if there's an "Unknown USB Device" splat.

    In any event, the fix that always works for me is as follows:

    1.  Uninstall Command Center
    2.  Reboot to ensure all the cruft is cleared out
    3.  Reinstall the latest Command Center version currently on Dell's Support Site
    4.  Shutdown the PC and pull the power chord for 30 seconds
    5.  Plug in the power chord and restart the PC.
    6.  Your Command Center functions should now be working properly; and if you had one, the Unknown USB Device splat should have disappeared from Device Manager.

    Give it a shot but YMMV.

    I am anxiously awaiting the fix from Dell.

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Thank you very much for your words of wisdom, you helped me recover my tower (Case lights and fans aren't running full speed).

    I tried the update because of the light staying on after shutting down but it wouldn't let me do anything with the tower....ie no lights, fans full speed and top fins remained closed. After spending a couple of hours to try to at least restore it to the way it was, your post was of great help. Thanks again.

    Paul

    Excellent... glad to hear some of your problems have been resolved.  Clearly Dell has some work to do here to iron out all the wrinkles... and I believe they're up to the task.  It's just a matter of time.  Meanwhile, enjoy your new beast!

    Doug

    M17xR2
    Win7x64
    ATI 5870 (single)