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1) Slot A is the master slot for booting. If you have 1 CPU/Memory board, always install it in slot A.
2) Use slot A to identify which CPU/Memory board is faulty ( in my opinion, mostly likely the backplane is good ).
3) The OBP is located on I/O board ( or M/B ... I don't remember ). The memory on CPU/Memory board is checked first, and then a copy of OBP will be loaded in the memory. So it is the copy of OBP in memory perform POST.
My guess: There is bad DIMM in one of your CPU/Memory board.