Got a Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live audio card?

Lots of not-so-nice things have been said by many a gamer about Creative's Sound Blaster Live audio card. What is of concern to the OFP player community specifically is the consequences of hardware errors discovered this audio card was distributed with.

The combination of a Sound Blaster Live card and an VIA chipset based motherboard seems to be a worst case scenario but the Sound Blaster Live card can theoretically cause problems on any PC, based on this VIA Technologies FAQ entry, fully quoted below for your reference:

Category: Sound

Question: I am having trouble with a system using a VIA chipset including a 686b southbridge and a Creative Sound Blaster Live card.

Answer: When the 686b Southbridge was first released, motherboard manufacturers and VIA discovered a problem when trying to transfer files between the primary and the secondary IDE channels on motherboards using ultra-DMA, when a Sound Blaster Live was plugged in and drivers activated. This issue was caused because too much noise is transferred across the PCI bus by the Sound Blaster Live driver set. In an attempt to fix this issue, some motherboard manufacturers modified their BIOS. In some instances, these modifications to the BIOS caused a data corruption error even when not using a Sound Blaster Live. VIA released a patch which resolves this issue, which is incorporated in the 4in1 drivers from the 4.31 version onwards. Motherboard manufacturers were advised to change the modifications made to thier BIOS to elimate the data corruption issue. If you are experiencing data corruption or lock up when transferring files between two IDE drives: 1) Make sure you have the latest BIOS from your motherboard manufacturer. 2) Make sure you have the latest 4in1 drivers 3) Make sure when you set up your system that you install the 4in1 drivers both before and after you install the SBL to make sure that the drivers see your SBL and install the correct patch. The patch will only install if the SBL is installed.

To sum up, this may affect any PC with a Sound Blaster Live audio card. So make sure your BIOS, chipset and Sound Blaster Live drivers are all up to date and installed correctly and in the proper sequence.