My problem is solved: the high-speed RAM was the problem. The RAM is good, but had problems in this board. I will report this to ASUS.
Not working in MA2-VM (firmware 1101): OCZ DDR2 PC2-6400 Reaper HPC
Working in MA2-VM (firmware 1101): PQI DII800 PQI26400-2GDB
- I could not install Fedora 7 until I flashed to 0901
- Board was unstable with 4-4-4-15 OCZ 800MHz RAM
- Board *is* stable with 5-5-5-15 PQI 800MHz RAM
- Firmware 1101 does not correct issue with OCZ RAM
Update: I tried Patriot 5-5-5-12 DDR2 RAM and it exhibits a different problem: I get 1 boot where the system works fine, but if I reboot, I loose video and end up having to clear CMOS.
It would appear that this board is very sensitive to memory. I have not tried using manual memory settings to shoot for the lowest common denominator of 5-5-5-15.