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DFI's Shiny New MI P55 T36 MINI-ITX (!) Board


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#1
530sCheapMac

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Well, it looks like the only other thread on the site concerning this board has been hidden from search or something. But I am reinventing it as a more hopeful thread.

To start:

Posted Image
SRSLY.

As a refresher: Mac Mini is 6.5 x 6.5 x 2.0 inches. MiniItx footprint is 6.7 inches. *squee*

This is the first ever Mini-ITX board with LGA 1156. Yes, that means that this board will take the newest Core i5 + i7 chips.

Other attractive features:
  • One PCIe 2.0 x16 slot (which, due to the i5 and i7's on board 2.0 x16 controller, means that literally each bit of traffic to and from your graphics card beelines to the CPU... Lag? NOPE. :))
  • 2x 240-Pin DDR3 slots compatible with up to PC3 12800 (1600 MHz) RAM sticks (So a theoretical limit of 8GB's... yes, this is "meh", maybe even "suck" but IMHO 4 is enough for OS X.)
  • A debugging LED (unheard of in this form factor)
I recommend you read Clunk.uk's review of the board (shameless plug) where the reviewer pushes the board to the point of no return to see what it can do. He ran it up to 3.960 GHz on an i7 860 (!!!!!! LOL !!!!!!) on water but apparently killed the board in the process.

Anywho, tonymacx86 (BEST HACKER EVER TO HAPPEN TO THE OSx86 COMMUNITY) says "Seems like it would work" (lol I'm SplitFace) but if we keep with it at this rate, I guess I'll be the guinea pig when I buy the board hopefully within a week or two.

Wish the SFF-1156-OSx86ing crew good luck!

#2
Frogburn959

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I in vision this mobo inside a G4 cube, but cooling sounds like it could be a problem.

#3
jeff070

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Well, it looks like the only other thread on the site concerning this board has been hidden from search or something. But I am reinventing it as a more hopeful thread.

To start:

Posted Image
SRSLY.

As a refresher: Mac Mini is 6.5 x 6.5 x 2.0 inches. MiniItx footprint is 6.7 inches. *squee*

This is the first ever Mini-ITX board with LGA 1156. Yes, that means that this board will take the newest Core i5 + i7 chips.

Other attractive features:

  • One PCIe 2.0 x16 slot (which, due to the i5 and i7's on board 2.0 x16 controller, means that literally each bit of traffic to and from your graphics card beelines to the CPU... Lag? NOPE. :D )
  • 2x 240-Pin DDR3 slots compatible with up to PC3 12800 (1600 MHz) RAM sticks (So a theoretical limit of 8GB's... yes, this is "meh", maybe even "suck" but IMHO 4 is enough for OS X.)
  • A debugging LED (unheard of in this form factor)
I recommend you read Clunk.uk's review of the board (shameless plug) where the reviewer pushes the board to the point of no return to see what it can do. He ran it up to 3.960 GHz on an i7 860 (!!!!!! LOL !!!!!!) on water but apparently killed the board in the process.

Anywho, tonymacx86 (BEST HACKER EVER TO HAPPEN TO THE OSx86 COMMUNITY) says "Seems like it would work" (lol I'm SplitFace) but if we keep with it at this rate, I guess I'll be the guinea pig when I buy the board hopefully within a week or two.

Wish the SFF-1156-OSx86ing crew good luck!



Hi I have this board bought it today! with 2 GB DDR3 1333Mhz

I managed to get Snow leopard on it but the only thing that wont work is the USB on the back :D

and no lan and sound.

#4
jeff070

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Hi I have this board bought it today! with 2 GB DDR3 1333Mhz

I managed to get Snow leopard on it but the only thing that wont work is the USB on the back :)

and no lan and sound.


Hey ports are now working Bios update did the trick!

#5
UnaClocker

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Creative sound in OSX... Yeah, and while you're at it, get my SB Live to work in Vista/Win7.. I will never buy another Creative product, or board with a Creative product on it. Screw them. ALC chips FTW..

#6
jeff070

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board works perfect

but i cant get any working internet connections, wifi not working, Apple usb to ethernet not working working with extremely lag :wacko:

I hope someone makes this board perfect because its a verry fast and cute board!

#7
jeff070

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board works perfect

but i cant get any working internet connections, wifi not working, Apple usb to ethernet not working working with extremely lag :blink:

I hope someone makes this board perfect because its a verry fast and cute board!



UPDATE !!!!!!! :D

Everything is working now !! Internal gigabite LAn, audio

Still some little problems with the bluetooth little lag on the mouse but iam using a wired mouse now. Seems some kext for the USB are buggy hope for a update!!

My system spec's :

DFI Lanparty P55-Mt36 I5 750 @ 3200 Mhz overclocked 2 x 2 GB 1333Mhz DDR3 Ram, Club3d Greenpower 9800GT / 1GB /256 bit Mac OS 10.6.2 Vanilla kernel!

#8
sparekh

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UPDATE !!!!!!! :)

Everything is working now !! Internal gigabite LAn, audio

Still some little problems with the bluetooth little lag on the mouse but iam using a wired mouse now. Seems some kext for the USB are buggy hope for a update!!

My system spec's :

DFI Lanparty P55-Mt36 I5 750 @ 3200 Mhz overclocked 2 x 2 GB 1333Mhz DDR3 Ram, Club3d Greenpower 9800GT / 1GB /256 bit Mac OS 10.6.2 Vanilla kernel!


I am seriously considering this motherboard mostly because of its size and good luck with DFI before. You mentioned everything is working. Would you kindly provide a summary of what you went through and/or any exceptions that you had to work out in getting to 10.6.2 fully running. Also, what firmware updates did you perform on the Mobo itself and any words of warnings.

Thanks!

#9
Fatshenanigans

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Well, it looks like the only other thread on the site concerning this board has been hidden from search or something. But I am reinventing it as a more hopeful thread.

To start:

Posted Image
SRSLY.

As a refresher: Mac Mini is 6.5 x 6.5 x 2.0 inches. MiniItx footprint is 6.7 inches. *squee*

This is the first ever Mini-ITX board with LGA 1156. Yes, that means that this board will take the newest Core i5 + i7 chips.

Other attractive features:

  • One PCIe 2.0 x16 slot (which, due to the i5 and i7's on board 2.0 x16 controller, means that literally each bit of traffic to and from your graphics card beelines to the CPU... Lag? NOPE. ;))
  • 2x 240-Pin DDR3 slots compatible with up to PC3 12800 (1600 MHz) RAM sticks (So a theoretical limit of 8GB's... yes, this is "meh", maybe even "suck" but IMHO 4 is enough for OS X.)
  • A debugging LED (unheard of in this form factor)
I recommend you read Clunk.uk's review of the board (shameless plug) where the reviewer pushes the board to the point of no return to see what it can do. He ran it up to 3.960 GHz on an i7 860 (!!!!!! LOL !!!!!!) on water but apparently killed the board in the process.

Anywho, tonymacx86 (BEST HACKER EVER TO HAPPEN TO THE OSx86 COMMUNITY) says "Seems like it would work" (lol I'm SplitFace) but if we keep with it at this rate, I guess I'll be the guinea pig when I buy the board hopefully within a week or two.

Wish the SFF-1156-OSx86ing crew good luck!



I did some work to the DSDT that I got from Tony's blog. I don't think it's one that he worked so you may want to inform him to take another look at it. I know that Tony doesn't usually add CPU code into his files unless he explicitly says so.

This is a great board for pure OSX uses though as I've set one up for a friend recently also and she loves it!

Attached Files



#10
wiredworld

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I did some work to the DSDT that I got from Tony's blog. I don't think it's one that he worked so you may want to inform him to take another look at it. I know that Tony doesn't usually add CPU code into his files unless he explicitly says so.

This is a great board for pure OSX uses though as I've set one up for a friend recently also and she loves it!



Looking to use the DSDT file you posted but have not used Tony's Boot CD before. Any further info worth knowing? Such as BIOS settings (other than those listed under Troubleshooting Tips on Tony's blog?). Or is it simply a case of replacing the DSDT.aml in Preboot.dmg with yours, recreating the ISO and going from there?

#11
Fatshenanigans

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Looking to use the DSDT file you posted but have not used Tony's Boot CD before. Any further info worth knowing? Such as BIOS settings (other than those listed under Troubleshooting Tips on Tony's blog?). Or is it simply a case of replacing the DSDT.aml in Preboot.dmg with yours, recreating the ISO and going from there?



For me, Boot CD's are much more difficult to handle. I only was able to get one to work once about 6 months ago but I reinstalled as soon as I mastered the USB method. If you just want it to get initially up and running, by all means swap out the DSDT as you said especially if you don't have a Mac or access to one.

But if you do let me know and I can outline a much better and cleaner method to let you do a vanilla installation with a USB stick or we can at least create one later and move all of your boot files and extra folder to an external USB.

When you modify the Boot CD, make a second copy with the following kexts, assuming he's using the latest bootloaders that don't require a restart kext:

fakesmc2.5.kext
IOACHIblockstorage
nullcpupowermanagement
sleepenabler

Three of these you can get from netkas.org but these are all you should use when you first get started. You can drop the nullcpu and sleepenabler after you install to 10.6.2 and then later install your audio and LAN kexts. It's better to leave them out at first so there's nothing that can conflict or hang.

Be sure to only have one hard drive connected. Make sure you disconnect your LAN cable, audio plugs, and everything else other than your USB mouse and USB keyboard.

Set your bios to AHCI for your drives and disable all of your onboard devices like ethernet, eSATA, and HD audio in bios.


Oh yea, before I forget, most importantly, be sure that the only boot flag that you have is arch=i386 to ensure that you boot into 32 bit mode since 64 bit causes most of the problems and issues that people are having since we still run dozens of 32 bit apps that are very unstable with the 64 bit kernel. All 64 bit apps can run on the 32 bit kernel with full power. If those guys tell you differently, I'll post my Geekbench scores of 12,000+, xbench of 320, and Cinebench scores of 6+ for the CPU and 32+ for my lowly 8800 GT video card :) Actually you can see part of those scores here: http://www.insanelym...p...155&st=1520

Later you'll be using the 885/889a audio codec and the IOnetworking family kext if the vanilla IOnetworking doesn't find your LAN.

#12
wiredworld

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thanks. I do have a mac and would be interested in the USB method you have used.
thanks again.

#13
Fatshenanigans

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thanks. I do have a mac and would be interested in the USB method you have used.
thanks again.



Ok let's do that then:

What you'll need: The files I attached here, Digital Dreamers install script, a 2 gig USB drive or smaller, an 8 gig USB drive or larger, your retail Snow Leopard disk, a Mac mach_kernel 10.6.2 (I'm not sure where to download this but your current Mac will have one in the root directory when you use the "show/hide" files tool), the Show/Hide files tool, and kext utility.

Part I: Boot drive prep - External USB

Step 1: Download Digital Dreamers script here:

http://www.insanelym...howtopic=185097

Step 2: Get a USB that can be formatted as a GUID. Some will only allow you to format them as FAT32 but they can still be used in Macs to transfer files.

Step 3: Format your USB drive and call it something easy like "Boot" or "George" or whatever is easiest :) Don't call it EFI since you might overwrite Mac EFI since it has a hidden EFI partition and the script will mount the hidden partition if you declare your target drive as "EFI". I learned this the hard way...twice.

Step 4: Go into the pack that I included here and swap out the bootloaders folder inside of Digital Dreamers ~Extras folder with the one I included since it has 1156 support

Step 5: Swap out the SMbios.plist and boot.plist in his plists folder with the ones I included.

Step 6: Now click the run patch installer script to run the script and it will ask you which type of install to run. Select the EFI option or Option 2 and you'll choose your GUID formatted USB as your target drive.

EDIT 3/22/2010: The prepared USB may not always show up as available to install! Should this be the case, choose 17 in the menu to "change install target" and select OPTION 1 or "Extra" to install to the prepared drive. After this has completed there will be a "stored kexts" folder inside the "Extra" folder. It's not critically important to delete it, but it's a good idea to do so as it might be confusing later.

Step 7: You then be asked which bootloader to install and you'll select the Chameleon RC4 option. This will write the necessary bootloader files to your drive just like if it was to be done manually but for me this is a much better method since it's airhead-proof (like I tend to be :P )

Step 8: Select the option to make your USB the "active" or target drive.

Step 9: Exit the install script by using the "Exit" (I think it's #20 on the list).

Step 10: Open the USB drive and go into the Extra folder. Copy my Extensions folder, the two plist files, the DSDT, and the Extensions.mkext. For good measure, drag and drop the Extensions folder over kext utility. So you should see your two plists, the Extensions folder, your DSDT, and the extensions.mkext. When you enter the USB drive you probably won't see the boot file since it should be hidden. You'll likely only see the Extra file.

Step 11: Eject your boot USB and put it aside for later.

Part II: Retail disk restored to 8 gig USB with 10.6.2 kernel.

1) Get your retail disk and insert it in your Superdrive. You'll be restoring (not installing) your Snow Leopard disk to a separate USB. You'll need at least 8 gigs of space for this. Be sure to restore it at the slowest speed of 1X write. You can also do this with Toast Titanium.

2) Now you'll need to "Show Hidden Files" using either the Show/Hide tool or any other methods you might know of with the SL USB drive (not the boot drive that you created earlier) still attached and active on your desktop. You'll now delete the 10.6.0 mach_kernel in the USB and replace it with the 10.6.2 kernel.

3) Hide your files again using the Show/Hide tool and you are done with preparation.


Part III: Installation to your main hard drive

1) Boot into your bios with only your boot USB connected.

2) Configure your bios to see only the USB as your sole boot drive and also the first hard drive on your list of active drives. My memory is blanking but you should be able to disable your installation drive and show only your USB drive active in the boot drives subdirectory. You should see your other hard drive in the AHCI configuration portion. Since we aren't using it, unplug the DVD burner from both the power supply and the SATA or IDE port. Be sure your target installation drive is plugged into the first SATA port. It's either Port 0 or Port 1. No other drives should be plugged in for now.

3) Plug in your 8 gig USB and then Save and Exit.

4) The system will reboot and you should now see your USB and the Snow Leopard Install disk in the menu. Scroll down to Verbose and then begin the boot process. Keep a note of any error messages that you may encounter along the way.

If all goes well you should be able to install with zero installation errors. Keep an eye on the installation log while installing.


You should now be in Snow Leopard. Once you inspect your system initially, eject your 8 gig drive, reboot, go into bios and enable your newly installed drive as the #2 hard drive behind the USB that remains first.. But the USB should be listed as the only boot drive. This is important since the installation drive doesn't (or shouldn't) have any boot files and you wouldn't want to boot from it anyway. Now you can enable your LAN and Audio. If LAN works natively cool but if not the kext for that is available. Audio will be the next task and I'll help you with that once you get the system up and running.


EDIT: The smbios and boot plists are installed where they are supposed to be by the script - see above that you don't need to manually move those two files. Also once you've booted to desktop, immediately install a 10.6.2 combo update and reboot normally as outlined earlier. Now you can proceed to enabling everything.

EDIT 2: I revised step 6 should there be problems identifying the external USB.

Attached Files



#14
wiredworld

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Thanks for the update.

I used unpkg to get 10.6.2 mach_kernel from the 10.6.2 combo update.

Will be a few days before I get the system up and running to complete Part III.

Will be in touch then.

#15
Fatshenanigans

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I just installed to an EVGA P55 board and I went through my own procedure and I realized that I made a mistake in how I wrote step 6 part 1 :P It should be: Select option 1 for "System partition" (Extra)! Oh dammit. Sorry about that :(

You may need to enter 17 to change the install target if your drive is not showing up. Now that I think about it I think it can work either way but it depends on whether or not the script sees the external USB when you run the script. I think my version, as written, will work but if you do another installation to the boot USB it may not immediately identify the drive as available. It can be confusing. I'm going to revise the above but I hope it worked!

#16
wiredworld

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Thanks. I'll run through the procedure again just to make sure it worked.

#17
leftbrain

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Does anyone have sleep working on this board? I'm very excited about a build around the DFI P55!

#18
wiredworld

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System up and running now.

I could not get Part III, step 4 to work initially. The Chameleon bootloader produced the error "cannot find mach_kernel". Found that connecting both USB drives, setting the boot USB drive as 1st in boot priority, disabling the SATA HD and setting SATA on AHCI worked.

Some errors during SL install noted below from installation log:
1. No or invalid system receipts
2. Error writing cache to .../Library/Caches/com.plist.FindSystemFiles.plist

The full install proceeded without any errors between -----Begin Install----- and -----End Install------

The system restarted after completion - did not load into SL. The HD shows up in Chameleon bootloader now.

EDIT: HD enabled in BIOS, as is LAN and audio. When HD selected from Chameleon bootloader system resets shortly after loading starts.

#19
thiswayup

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System up and running now.

I could not get Part III, step 4 to work initially. The Chameleon bootloader produced the error "cannot find mach_kernel". Found that connecting both USB drives, setting the boot USB drive as 1st in boot priority, disabling the SATA HD and setting SATA on AHCI worked.

Some errors during SL install noted below from installation log:
1. No or invalid system receipts
2. Error writing cache to .../Library/Caches/com.plist.FindSystemFiles.plist

The full install proceeded without any errors between -----Begin Install----- and -----End Install------

The system restarted after completion - did not load into SL. The HD shows up in Chameleon bootloader now.

EDIT: HD enabled in BIOS, as is LAN and audio. When HD selected from Chameleon bootloader system resets shortly after loading starts.


very interesting thread as I am keen to build myself an ITX as well for my first build. Is the sound, sleep and wired net all working?

#20
replicant

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any updates on sleep fully working?





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