Saturday, March 10, 2012

ASUS Drivers and OS Versions

Let me say, that I should have known better than to buy white box. It's just never as smooth as a brand name box that supports the specific OS that you want. In this case, my excuse was I was in a hurry an needed hardware sooner rather than later. However, the install process on this thing cost me about half a day.

On the off chance that anyone else struggles with this, here is my story.....

Hardware: ASUS P9X79 Pro motherboard

The good news is that this motherboard supports up to 64 GB of RAM which was my primary concern for this test box. Under normal circumstances, I'm not worried about drivers because Windows 7 drivers work in Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1 (the OS I'm using for Hyper-V and virtual machines).

My main problem was actually the way that ASUS distributes drivers. They have a special AsusSetup utility with an INI file that defines which files to use for various operating systems. I'm guessing that it works well for most people, but AsusSetup was detecting my OS as WNT_6.1I_64 which is not in their INI file. I tried running the setup file in compatibility mode, but it then detected another version of OS which as not supported.

So, there are two ways to work around this:
  1. Edit the INI files to and add WNT_6.1I_64 = Win7_64. This works, but there are a lot of INI files to edit as one AsusSetup, runs another in a lower part of the directory structure.
  2. Browse down far enough and you'll find the actual setup file that is run to install the driver. At this point, I've satisfied myself with installing the chipset drive which resolved most of the unknown devices in Device Manager.
I had also looked to see if WNT_6.1I_64 was an environment variable I could change, but it was not.

Unfortunately the network card on this motherboard, the Intel 82579V, is not officially supported by Intel. So, the drivers do not find the card in Windows Server 2008 R2 (even if you download from Intel). However, if you manually update the device driver for the network card in Device Manager, you can browse to the PRO1000\Winx64\NDIS62 folder, select e1c62x64.inf, and select the Intel 82579LM driver from the list. Not the correct driver, but it seems to work. If you look in the inf file it lists both the 82579LM and 82579V card descriptions. I'm guessing that it is primarily a difference of which advanced options are supported.

A better long term strategy would be to get a PCIe network card (no PCI slots in this one), but I need this up and running today.

While I did figure out the INI file entry bit on my own, I did not figure out the NIC fix on my own. It was originally posted by stephanvg on this thread:


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Man, thank you, I got all the drivers done, but the LAN.

    Then, it turns out that it's on Intel's website under 82579 Intel drivers!

  3. Nevermind, that one was actually not supported. Had to install an intel proSet 1000.

  4. hello i am trying to install server 2008 r2 on a asus mb and haveing hell with it.

    ill try the network adapter options that you said starting with the card. but what about the chipset?

  5. For the chipset, I just browsed on the CD and found the install files and ran them manually. The are in there, it's just that the Asus setup utility doesn't know to use them in Windows 2008 R2.

    1. having an impossible time with this. it just wont take the network drivers. i have a asus rampage IV

      its the exact same problem. no pci slots so i have to try what you suggested.

      and having so much trouble with it
      is there email of yours to comunicate?
      i am at

  6. Thank you so much. I did a manual install and choose the 82579 driver under the windows list and it worked. :)

  7. Thank you so much for this post. I solved my pain of last 7 days from the pointer from your site. I have ASUS - PX979 - LGA2011 motherboard, installed Windows 2008 R2 Std and getting "Base System Device" - was not able to find right driver anywhere.
    So here is the solution:
    Choose OS= Win7 x64bit on Asus site after choosing your LGA2011-P9X79 motherboard
    Download chipset drivers:

    Unzip it to same folder and add entry "WNT_6.1I_64 = Win7_64" . This may not solve the issue right away.
    Then I went to deep folder as below:
    \Intel_Chipset_XPVistaWin7_8_8-1_VER9321015\Driver\Chipset\AsusSetup.ini and added same entry as below:

    InstallType = 0

    ;Force =WNT_5.0,English
    ;WIN_4.00 = Win95
    ;WIN_4.03 = Win95
    ;WIN_4.10 = Win98
    ;WIN_4.11 = Win98
    ;WIN_4.90 = WinME
    ;WNT_4.0 = WinNT40
    ;WNT_4.0P = WinNT40P
    ;WNT_5.0 = WinNT50
    ;WNT_5.0P = WinNT50
    WNT_5.1P_MCE = WinNT51P
    WNT_5.1H = WinNT51P
    WNT_5.1P = WinNT51P
    WNT_5.2 = WinNT52
    ;WNT_5.2A = WinNT52A
    ;WNT_5.2I = WinNT52I
    WNT_5.2P = WinNT52P

    WNT_6.1I_64 = Win7_64

    WNT_6.0P_32 = Vista32
    WNT_6.0P_32_MCE = Vista32

    Save the AsusSetup.ini file and run below:
    \Intel_Chipset_XPVistaWin7_8_8-1_VER9321015\Driver\Chipset\AsusSetup.exe - It installed all my "System Devices" properly

    I guess - it will be same process for onboard LAN/NIC driver too which is Intel(R) 82579V Gigabit N/W Card
    I hope this will help somebody else.

    1. You'll find that the LAN driver won't install at all. The setup won't run on Win 2008 R2 it only recognizes client OS as valid. I've since upgraded that box to Win 2012 R2 and added a PCIe NIC to avoid the driver issue. For $30 it seemed the easy way to go.

  8. We really appreciate and keep do posting such kind of blogs.
    Thank you.
    Asus Technical Support