I decided to replace my original fans in my 630i with Noctua 120mm fans.
I've replaced fans on other Dell cases many times before with great success.
Usually, the first time you start the computer with new fans, you get a POST message telling you RPM is too low or fans not detected, and you get the choice to press F1 to continue or F2 to enter setup.
On certain Dell models, you have to do this twice for it to remember that you dont want it to detect the fans' RPM at boot anymore.
I always test to see how the BIOS detects the fans' RPM first. Just to make sure the system will boot without too much fuss if I replace the fans.
So on my 630i I simply disconnected the HDD fan, and started the system.
I hit F1 to continue, and the system started fine.
I connected my 120mm Noctua fan, and started the system again.
Once again I get the error message regarding the fan, and I hit F1.
But this time, when windows is up and running, the can hear my GTX 295 GPU fan is running at 100% RPM.
Noisy as hell. Vacuum cleaner noise levels, I tell you.
I quickly check SpeedFan.
SpeedFan doesnt detect the GPU fan controller anymore. It's gone!
NVIDIA Control Panel | Performance | Device Settings | GPU...
I cannot control the GPU fan anymore. It's greyed out.
(All other FAN controllers are ok. )
So I figure that when I pressed F1 the second time, the BIOS takes a note that it shouldnt care about low/weird RPM readings anymore, and as a result it disables certain fan controller programs/features. And in this process, it permanently disabled the fan controller on my GPU as well!
I've tried a clean install of the OS. Didnt help.
I've tried moving the GTX 295 to the secondary PCIe in my 630i. Didnt help.
I've tried installing another graphics card (9800GT). GPU Fan works fine.
I've tried moving the GTX 295 to another computer. Same problem there.
I've tried loading BIOS defaults.
I've tried resetting BIOS. With jumper. Also by removing battery.
I've tried using the RESET_FW jumper on the Master IO Board.
I've tried updating BIOS to lower version, hoping that it will clear event logs and such.
I've tried upgrading back to newest BIOS version again.
I've tried upgrading ESA firmware.
How do I reset the ESA Master IO Board firmware so it will start detecting the fans' RPM again. If I disconnect the card cage and HDD fans now, the computer doesnt care at all anymore. No more press-F1-error-messages. Usually a BIOS reset will bring the message back, but it doesnt on my system.
Dell Support doesnt want to help me because its out of warranty. They dont even want to tell me how the frigging RESET_FW jumper works, or if it works.
I'm stuck now.
Is that it? Is my GTX 295 broken?