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longgone

dead computer (maybe)

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longgone

I would like some troubleshooting info on this problem. Backround first, I was going throug my e-mail and out of the blue the machine decides to reboot (???), and it goes all the way back to the blank, black screen between the boot screens and the desktop screen and hangs there. Waited for a minute or two and nothing happened, clicked the reset button, machine rebooted and sounded like the NYC Philharmonic and moved into the case. It had more beeps than I have ever heard before, and it did not even go through the boot screens this time. I had the normal lights blink on the DVD rom and the CDRW but this time on the A drive the (use light) light came on, stayed on and I could hear the drive making a clicking sound. This same instance has happened twice before over the life span of this machine (about 3 years) and with each instance I removed the side panel and just made sure the floppy and ide cables were secure and tight and that seemed to cure the problem. At least until the next occurance, My question is, are these cables subject to becoming loose due to vibration from the air movement inside the case or is something else at play here. I have not yet opened it up to check the cables, I am making this post on the backup (second) machine. Would like some input/advice in this area,, thank you in advance.

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Ed_P

Dumb question, do you have a floppy in the floppy drive? If so, remove it. If not, try blowing the dust out of the drive, or suck it out with the vacuum cleaner.Devices do wear out, floppy drives included. Maybe you need a new one.Another possibility is a virus. There is at least one out that causes the pc to reboot on it's own.

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nlinecomputers

Continuous beeping is a sign of a bad power supply, motherboard, or keyboard. I'd try replacing the Power supply first as that is often the cause of such things and borderline power problems can cause the random symptoms you are seeing.

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longgone
B) EdP/nlinecomputers,,,,,nothing in the A drive at all, haven't used it in a reallllll long time. The virus program that I run (actually two of them) V-catch and Panda do real well at catching them critters (I think). Panda has caught two infected intrusions in the past 3 weeks. I will try the clean out process though, can't hurt.I failed to mention that the continous beeping (and other sounds) only happened that one time. I shut the machine off for awhile and restarted it and there were no beeps at all. I normally have one beep during the boot up process and this time (3 times really) there were no beeps at all. I had the power light on the computer and it was running but that was the extent of it. The monitor did not even come out of shutdown/standby mode. I do have spare power supplies, just not as large as this one is. The installed one is a 525w, could be over kill but there is a lot inside this case.

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nlinecomputers

I stand by my what I said about the PSU. If it is flakey you can have the problems you mention. It might work months or years before failing enough to stop the system from working. 525 does sound large but if you have a lot then you need a lot. I've got a 400 watt in my system and I need that much.

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Ed_P

To check out your power needs try this website.

I shut the machine off for awhile and restarted it and there were no beeps at all.
It could be a heat problem, either the PSU or the CPU.

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Rons

Like Nathan has mentioned, could be the P/S. Connect the old P/S -minus some toys - just to confirm that the P/S is at fault. B) Let us know.

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b2cm

What's the brand/model of the motherboard, and the number/spacing of the beeps?

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longgone

b2cmthe mainboard is a Soltek (the specs are listed in my profile), and the one time that it beeped it was like rapid fire on a .22 semiauto rifle.

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Gus K

Have you opened it up yet? Might be able to spot something as you blow it out and re-seat all your connections (power, memory, PCI cards, cables). Might be worth clearing the CMOS while you are at it.

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longgone

Update so far,,,,opened it up, did not see anything but made sure all the cables were in tight. Blew it out, vacuumed it out (cpu heatsink really dirty) wiped down everything I could get to without dis-assembly, it might come to that later. Turned it on with nothing attached except pwr cord, the result was one long "beep" at regular spacing, the "beep" lasts approx. 2-3 seconds, space between is about that also. Shut it off, hooked up everything to it and tried it in the system. Turned it on and got a regular one PC band, rapid fire beeps continuing into at the end one long continous beep. There were actually 2 different series of beeps but it settled on the one that became one. Clicked on the reset button, it did that sequence and then all was quiet, no beeps, nothing. During this entire process the machine never once got far enough along in the boot sequence to bring up the Monitor from its standby (???) mode. All the internal fans are running (2 on the pwr supply, one on the CPU, one on the north bridge chip, one on the ram heat sinks, one on case back, one slot fan, and the fans attached to the two hard drives (one fan each)), and there you have it so far.

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Ed_P
Turned it on with nothing attached except pwr cord, the result was one long "beep" at regular spacing, the "beep" lasts approx. 2-3 seconds, space between is about that also.
You need at least the keyboard. Possibly the monitor too. Everything else is optional.

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longgone

EdP,,,I did that after the first time I powered it up and got the evenly spaced beeps, I put it back on line into the system and that is when I got the one PC band. I have a list of the bios beep codes here but the link that b2cm gave me is quick and from what it says it rougly could be ram so I will remove and then reseat and see what happens. Hope that cures it, if not then I'll just come back for more info ....... :)

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longgone

Some more info on this .. problem ..Dug out a trouble shooting guide and followed all it had to say. It has a segment called initial test which I used and it has the minimum of items in the machine ... one stick of ram, vide card (if no onboard video), CMOS jumper to normal, then energize the machine and the cpu fan should spin, should get the one beep and the monitor should come on. Well the only thing that happened was the cpu fan came on, no beep, no monitor. This test is done without having anything hooked up except what I listed. The next step is to remove all the plug in cards, ram, ide cables, floppy cables and in the end the only things connected to the mainboard are the cpu/cpu heatsink/fan and the main pwr supply cord. From that you turn it on and the cpu fan should spin, mine does that. Went back an connected all that was disconnected, turned it on, no beep/beeps no monitor, but all the fans work great B) ;) ... anyone got a suggestion, that I can try (well get a spare pwr supply tomorrow Nathan).

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b2cm

Yes, try another power supply unit. (To rule out ps issues.)Try clearing the CMOS (set the short to CLEAR for at least 5 seconds, and return to NORMAL) and restarting with only the keyboard, video card and a memory stick.Check the monitor signal and power connections. Test the monitor on another computer. Change the memory stick. (To rule out bad memory.) Try it out on the other banks. (To rule out bad memory slot.)Change the video card with a PCI card on first expansion slot. (To rule out display controller issues.)

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Ed_P

And if all those things fail you can always remove a PCI card, insert a large metal ring half way into the open slot in the case then fill the case with cement and use it as a boat anchor. ;) :lol:

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longgone

b2cm/EdPb2cm,,,cleared the CMOS, did the single ram stick test (using the currently installed ram) and also with a spare stick, currently have two sticks PC2700/DDR333 in it (spare stick was PC2100/DDR266, using monitore with my second machine as I make this post,, :D :) ,, don't have a spare PCI video card laying around for that test. When I cleared the CMOS only thing in the machine was the ram, video card and cpu, did not have keyboard hooked up but after I did all I said in last post I still have no "boot" beep nor video display. I hope the pwr supply is the cause of this because I have several spares laying around of them.EdP,,,,, :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: ;) :lol:

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greengeek
:lol: Did you clean any dirt and dust from between the motherboard and the case? Also make sure the motherboard isn't touching the case anywhere it shouldn't be.

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b2cm
Also make sure the motherboard isn't touching the case anywhere it shouldn't be.
Best done by moving the mainboard out of the casing, hooking it to the power supply and starting it up (a ball pen tip to ground the power on pins) with just the keyboard, video card and memory.

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Ed_P
a ball pen tip to ground the power on pins
Bent paper clips work too. :lol:

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b2cm

So, Dale? Curious about the status of your motherboard.

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longgone

b2cm .......Wellllllll ...... don't give up on me .... I have not yet installed the spare/reserve pwr supply .... it is a 450w unit. You might sa y I am not to enthralled about pulling everything out of the case to bench test it, but I know if I must then I shall. I did send an e-mail to the mfgr to see if they still have them or if they have a like replacement. This board is about 2-3 years old so I am not really holding my breath. I hope they have something as this board has two "dip" switches on it, one for the frequency multipler set and the other for the FSB set ... but I have not yet received a reply. Probably sometime during this week I will do what has to be done.

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b2cm

We are here with you. :D Just keep us updated.If the power supply swap doesn't fix the problem, try other processor/FSB settings. Maybe underclocking your processor (using those dip switches) to 100 MHz (instead of 133).Joy's suggestion regarding a possible ground is also worth looking into.

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longgone

b2cm.....Thanks ... I need the moral support ... I would think though that if there were some sort of a ground like that it would short out and I should have gotten one of three things, smoke (bad), sparks (worse) or an explosion (mainboard is junk). The explosion being a capacitor, did that once already on a SOYO board, do not want instant replay.

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longgone

Welllll.... :) &$%#@#$*&% <_< Today was the day,,, did everything that has been suggested ... total disassembly ... except for hard drives and DVD Rom and CDRW and FD. Down to the bare case, cleaned it up all nice n purrty ( :lol: ). Did not notice any apparent grounds between mainboard and case. Placed board back in case, hooked up the pwr switch, put in one stick of ram and the video card, along with the keyboard and mouse .... BTW cleared the CMOS and also put in spare power supply. Time for the power to be applied, have power, cpu fan spins as well as the north bridge fan .... but ... no beep ,,, no video ..... dead silence all around (except for me) .. now, what is the next step ... I do have a spare mainboard (brand new really) ASUS, can use all the same components that are on this board ,,, DDR266/333/400 ,,, etc etc .... any suggestions/advice on maybe a way to narrow it down to either the processor or main board .... ????

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Ed_P
any suggestions/advice
You remember my comment about the large ring? :) <_< You could try replacing the processor. BUT if the board is bad it could blow the new processor.Is the board still under warantee? If so get an RMA and return it. Same for the processor.

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nlinecomputers

Yeah, It's starting to sound like a boat anchor to me too....

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longgone

EcP ........I am not that lucky ... at best guess this entire uint is at the minimum 2 years old, possibily older ... but no more than 3 since the pwr supply I took out has a quality check stamp on it that say 2002 ......

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longgone
:blink: :w00t: ;) EdP/inlinecomputers ........You is all right, just full of well wishes and good humor. I like that , how about I get my other board and rebuild this thing and see what I come up with there. The only real difference other than the Mfgr (I did check Solteks' site and I can get a smiliiar board just a lot newer version, different chipset though) is that the Soltek board is only a AGP2X/4X slot and the ASUS is a 8X slot, I will have to see if it can work with the 4X card that is on the Soltek board. Other than those two differences all else is the same except one more item the ASUS has the LAN connection onboard whereas Soltek I used a PCI slot.So ... I ask for some advice here, saying I do change out the board (it is a Socket A), am I going to have fits, get ulcers, and less hair attempting to get all the hardware to be accepted and the BIOS to work right.... ?????

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