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Author Topic: Guide for Flashing AMD Radeon HD 6970 in your Mac Pro  (Read 123376 times)
icemac
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« on: June 23, 2012, 01:15:08 AM »

Edit:This guide can be used for pretty much any radeon card all you need is the efi rom and an original pc rom to combine it with for your card, or where available you can get a genuine mac radeon rom and then you can skip the rom creator part.

Hey not sure if there is already a guide like this but i was having some problems with my card so i decided to re-flash it and here is a step by step.

Disclaimer:
I take no responsibility for any breaking of graphics cards or mistakes, i only post this guide as a guidline to users who know they are capable of this, because it took me a good 4 hours of googling and such to get all the stuff i needed and error fixing.

This Guide is for Mac Pro users, you can use some of the parts as a PC flashing guide mostly the bottom part.
Things you will need:
1-2 hours
Blank cd/dvd
Small dos partition or a bootcamp partition


1. Get a updated rom for your card either straight from the manufacturers site or from http://www.techpowerup.com/vgabios/index.php?page=1&architecture=ATI&manufacturer=&model=HD+6970&interface=&memSize=0 (this is where i got mine)

2. Get netkas 6970 Efi http://forum.netkas.org/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=1118.0;attach=928

3. Get Netkas Rom Creator http://netkas.org/?p=943

4. Open Rom creator and select Your downloaded Bios in the select Bios Rom box and select Netkas Efi in the select Efi rom box then click create Rom
Tip name the file something short and only one word for easier DOS use (i used 6970.rom)

5. Download Atiflash http://www.techpowerup.com/downloads/2099/ATIFlash_3.95.html

6. Copy your new Rom file and atiflash.exe to a DOS/bootcamp partition

7. Now download Free DOS ftp://ftp.ibiblio.org/pub/micro/pc-stuff/freedos/files/distributions/1.0/fdbasecd.iso and burn the image to a cd or dvd with Disk Utility(Images menu and select Burn and locate fdbasecd.iso the free DOS image)

8. Assuming you have done everything above, Insert the free DOS cd you just burned and restart you computer holding down C in the startup to boot Free DOS,
You will get a menu up select the Top option

I then selected install -> English -> Exit to command Prompt

9. You should now be in DOS and should be greated by a black screen and a C:\ or X:\
For me C: was my bootcamp partition but it might be D: or even E: for you easiest way to find yours is just type one of the above and hit enter then type DIR that should bring up a directory of the files on the drive you have accessed if you see atiflash EXE and your romfile 6970.rom or what ever you named it you are now in the right place.

10. Now the scary part Tongue Type atiflash -i    This command should bring you a list of your PCI-E devices Locate you graphics Card which should be called Cayman or ati Cayman and the number of the port it is in, mine was 0 but yours could be 1 or 2 or something else as well.

11. Now Type atiflash -unlockrom 0 (this number should be the port number of your card 0 having been mine)
It's should then give you a message Rom Unlocked and return you to C:\

12. The Flashing: I had a command from another site the went like this: ( atiflash -p -fs -fp 0 your_original_rom_file_name ) you can try this command first as it is a safe command which will check your roms validity and compatability this command did however not work for me and gave me a ERROR 0FL01.

The Command i used was: atiflash -p -f (your port number) (Your rom file name)      Example : atiflash -p -f 0 6970.rom
(this command force flashes the card so make sure you have the correct Bios when you make you EFI rom with rom creator)
Flashing takes only a couple of second and you should then be promted by a series of lines

Device id
new device id

and so on, don't be worried if it doesn't say anything behind those it didn't for me and it is probably a resault of the EFI hybridizing.

13. That's it assuming you followed all the instructions you should now be able to reboot to a sexy Apple logo gray screen ( note you may need to hold down option in startup and select your mac os x partition to boot back to mac os x)


Hope your flashing goes well
« Last Edit: June 24, 2012, 04:38:24 AM by icemac » Logged

Mac Pro 4.1 Quad core 2.66 12 GB ram Nvidia Geforce Gtx 660ti 2 GB
Macbook Pro Retina 2.3 ghz 8 GB Ram Nvidia Geforce GT 650m 1 GB
mac-bitch
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« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2012, 12:59:38 PM »

Safe yourself some trouble and obtain a cayman card with a bios switch. Toggle the switch towards the display outputs (position 1); this is where the unlocked bios sits.



Download this bios using "atiflash -s 0(your-graphics-adapter-number) BIOS.ROM 20000.
Use this BIOS.ROM file to stitch the efi onto it. Then you do not have to force-flash anything.
Just flash with "atiflash -p 0 EFI.ROM".

If anything went wrong now simply toggle the switch to position "2" and restart. Then the card uses a locked backup bios.
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icemac
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« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2012, 02:07:41 PM »

Safe yourself some trouble and obtain a cayman card with a bios switch. Toggle the switch towards the display outputs (position 1); this is where the unlocked bios sits.



Download this bios using "atiflash -s 0(your-graphics-adapter-number) BIOS.ROM 20000.
Use this BIOS.ROM file to stitch the efi onto it. Then you do not have to force-flash anything.
Just flash with "atiflash -p 0 EFI.ROM".

If anything went wrong now simply toggle the switch to position "2" and restart. Then the card uses a locked backup bios.

Good idea but kinda harder when you already have a card that doesn't have one Tongue
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mac-bitch
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« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2012, 02:56:25 PM »

Safe yourself some trouble and obtain a cayman card with a bios switch. Toggle the switch towards the display outputs (position 1); this is where the unlocked bios sits.



Download this bios using "atiflash -s 0(your-graphics-adapter-number) BIOS.ROM 20000.
Use this BIOS.ROM file to stitch the efi onto it. Then you do not have to force-flash anything.
Just flash with "atiflash -p 0 EFI.ROM".

If anything went wrong now simply toggle the switch to position "2" and restart. Then the card uses a locked backup bios.

Good idea but kinda harder when you already have a card that doesn't have one Tongue

True Smiley.
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etc
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« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2012, 03:00:13 PM »

ATIWinFlash is much easier.
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« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2012, 03:11:37 PM »

ATIWinFlash is much easier.

Maybe, but nothing is more unstable than a Windows environment. I do not trust windows beyond booting it for casual gaming sessions.
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icemac
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« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2012, 03:28:29 PM »

ATIWinFlash is much easier.

Maybe, but nothing is more unstable than a Windows environment. I do not trust windows beyond booting it for casual gaming sessions.

I agree i already lost a SSD drive cause windows froze up while updating the firmware, plus if you don't already have a windows install this free dos method is super fast.
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Rominator
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« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2012, 10:17:28 PM »

Thank you for posting this.

I saw that FreeDos fish many times in art flashing.

I now have a dedicated PCIE PC with a USB stick full'o'dos and roms

But for people with just a Mac Pro, this is great.

I agree that getting a reference 6950/70 with that switch is best possible choice, but after initial run of cards they started "decontenting".

That switch and 2nd EEPROM were some of first things to go.

I doubt the there are any new 6950s still shipping with them.

Thanks again !!!
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Giskard
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« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2012, 04:09:45 AM »

Cool!  Are there any compatiblity issues with the 6970 in a Mac Pro, or does it work just like a flashed 6870?
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icemac
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2012, 01:31:02 PM »

Unigine benchmark has some weird green screen issue but so far i haven't had that issue in any games very strange.
Other then that i've not had any issues really except a overheating issue but i found out that is a problem with the brand i bought which i fixed by editing the fan settings in the Bios.

Edit:
Well apparently i haven't fixed the overheating issue since something in osx keeps reseting the bios fan setting even now when i flashed it to keep the fans at 100% as soon as the os loads right after the gray apple screen boom fans go slow motion.

Brand is Gigabyte GV-697OC-2GD
« Last Edit: June 27, 2012, 02:34:46 AM by icemac » Logged

Mac Pro 4.1 Quad core 2.66 12 GB ram Nvidia Geforce Gtx 660ti 2 GB
Macbook Pro Retina 2.3 ghz 8 GB Ram Nvidia Geforce GT 650m 1 GB
Giskard
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« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2012, 01:03:23 AM »

I've got a Visiontek on the way, I'll post the results once I've tried to flash it. 
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whyme466
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« Reply #11 on: July 26, 2012, 07:05:19 PM »

Unfortunately, with my Mac Pro 5,1, I encounter the same loss of OS boot screen with Snow Lion/10.8 after flashing that I originally encountered with 10.7 (see http://forum.netkas.org/index.php/topic,1118.msg7511.html#msg7511).  So, this hybrid EFI ROM version is still unusable in my system, and I must still rely upon 2 graphics cards in my Mac Pro.  My 2 GPU approach (one fully Apple supported, but minimal footprint GPU; one state of art Windows GPU) appears to be losing more support from Apple, though.

In fact, when I restore my original factory (non-EFI) ROM, Snow Lion/10.8 immediately crashes during startup - unless 6970 is removed (10.7 did not work, but it did not crash). With the newer Mac Pro 6,1's missing option for a single, small profile GPU like the GT120, Apple appears to be enforcing use of Apple only graphics cards.  I have contacted Apple and strongly encouraged a more current graphics GPU option for the Mac Pro than the 5870.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2012, 07:21:19 PM by whyme466 » Logged
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« Reply #12 on: July 26, 2012, 08:55:18 PM »

Unfortunately, with my Mac Pro 5,1, I encounter the same loss of OS boot screen with Snow Lion/10.8 after flashing that I originally encountered with 10.7 (see http://forum.netkas.org/index.php/topic,1118.msg7511.html#msg7511).  So, this hybrid EFI ROM version is still unusable in my system, and I must still rely upon 2 graphics cards in my Mac Pro.  My 2 GPU approach (one fully Apple supported, but minimal footprint GPU; one state of art Windows GPU) appears to be losing more support from Apple, though.

In fact, when I restore my original factory (non-EFI) ROM, Snow Lion/10.8 immediately crashes during startup - unless 6970 is removed (10.7 did not work, but it did not crash). With the newer Mac Pro 6,1's missing option for a single, small profile GPU like the GT120, Apple appears to be enforcing use of Apple only graphics cards.  I have contacted Apple and strongly encouraged a more current graphics GPU option for the Mac Pro than the 5870.

I am sorry nobody pointed this out before but if you don't get a boot screen, it has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with which OS you are using.

It just means you didn't put the EFI together right.

When the power button is hit, the machine polls all connected devices, if a useable EFI driver is found, the device turns on. If you are connected via lower DVI port ONLY and don't have a boot screen, then you probably used 6950 EFI with 6970 BIOS or some other error. On an EFI64 Mac, you should see the boot screen via lower DVI port even with no Hard Drives or OS connected.
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whyme466
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« Reply #13 on: July 26, 2012, 11:17:17 PM »

Thanks for response, Rominator.

I already thought the problem was not OS related, since the boot screen precedes any OS launch.  I carefully performed every step listed by icemac again, downloading every source file and creating a new boot DVD for flashing.  For a second time, I still cannot obtain a boot screen with the flashed ROM.  This flashed ROM works in Bootcamp (PC gaming, for example), but I cannot boot up either 10.6.7 or 10.8 OS.  If I return to the original 6970 ROM version, the start-up OS boot screen reappears, and I can easily boot between 10.6.7 and Bootcamp.
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« Reply #14 on: July 27, 2012, 12:25:06 AM »

  If I return to the original 6970 ROM version, the start-up OS boot screen reappears, and I can easily boot between 10.6.7 and Bootcamp.

Huh

Are you saying that you get a boot screen on 6970 when it DOESN'T have EFI rom?

makes no sense at all.

Do you understand that 6950 and 6070 have different device id's and require different EFI?
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