How to diagnose PC with black screen?

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

PC #1
Computer switches on, but screen remains black, no
messages, no beeps. Tried the hard disk on another
machine and it worked. Tried the network card on
another machine and it worked. Tried 32MB DIMM
memory module on another machine and it appears
to be dead. Has AMD 500 MHz CPU and GigaByte main
board.

Is it possible for a RAM memory module to be erased
or is it likely destroyed due to an electrical
problem?

Did not try the flash BIOS chip or PCI graphics card
on another machine, so I don't know if they have been
erased or destroyed. Any ideas?


PC #2
Very similar symptoms to PC #1. Computer worked fine
last time I used it. Now, when I switch it on, it
switches itself off (some sort of short?). When I
switch it on again, it stays on, but the screen
remains black, no messages, no beeps. Has on-board
ATI graphics chip, ASUS main board and Pentium 2
166 MHz CPU. Any ideas?
6 answers Last reply
More about diagnose black screen
  1. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

    In the first PC, do you get beeps if you take out the ram completely ? (of
    course you won't get any video, but it should beep).

    Pull every card and device out that you can, then reseat video card and see
    what happens.. (I only say put video card back in so you can see if you get
    a POST).

    Also, try clearing the cmos on both machines..


    Regards,
    Chris
  2. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

    In article <f1f8c384.0407270143.25ea7e49@posting.google.com>,
    nospamaccepted@yahoo.com says...
    > PC #1
    > Computer switches on, but screen remains black, no
    > messages, no beeps. Tried the hard disk on another
    > machine and it worked. Tried the network card on
    > another machine and it worked. Tried 32MB DIMM
    > memory module on another machine and it appears
    > to be dead. Has AMD 500 MHz CPU and GigaByte main
    > board.
    >
    > Is it possible for a RAM memory module to be erased
    > or is it likely destroyed due to an electrical
    > problem?
    >
    > Did not try the flash BIOS chip or PCI graphics card
    > on another machine, so I don't know if they have been
    > erased or destroyed. Any ideas?
    >
    >
    > PC #2
    > Very similar symptoms to PC #1. Computer worked fine
    > last time I used it. Now, when I switch it on, it
    > switches itself off (some sort of short?). When I
    > switch it on again, it stays on, but the screen
    > remains black, no messages, no beeps. Has on-board
    > ATI graphics chip, ASUS main board and Pentium 2
    > 166 MHz CPU. Any ideas?
    >


    some sort of hardware failure.

    could be chip, power supply, motherboard, memory, graphics card.

    happy hunting.
  3. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

    Procedure is quite simple, straight forward, involves tools
    that are inexpensive and commonly sold in major stores, AND is
    not about hunting.

    Start by confirming the power supply system this is PSU,
    motherboard controller, and power switch. Does not matter if
    machine turns on, then off. Reason for that failure is also
    found in this simple procedure: "Computer doesnt start at all"
    in alt.comp.hardware on 10 Jan 2004 at
    http://tinyurl.com/2t69q or

    "I think my power supply is dead" in alt.comp.hardware on 5
    Feb 2004 at http://tinyurl.com/yvbw9

    Until you have verified this part, then all other testing
    and speculation is simply time wasting.


    Little Ghost wrote:
    > PC #1
    > Computer switches on, but screen remains black, no
    > messages, no beeps. Tried the hard disk on another
    > machine and it worked. Tried the network card on
    > another machine and it worked. Tried 32MB DIMM
    > memory module on another machine and it appears
    > to be dead. Has AMD 500 MHz CPU and GigaByte main
    > board.
    >
    > Is it possible for a RAM memory module to be erased
    > or is it likely destroyed due to an electrical
    > problem?
    >
    > Did not try the flash BIOS chip or PCI graphics card
    > on another machine, so I don't know if they have been
    > erased or destroyed. Any ideas?
    >
    > PC #2
    > Very similar symptoms to PC #1. Computer worked fine
    > last time I used it. Now, when I switch it on, it
    > switches itself off (some sort of short?). When I
    > switch it on again, it stays on, but the screen
    > remains black, no messages, no beeps. Has on-board
    > ATI graphics chip, ASUS main board and Pentium 2
    > 166 MHz CPU. Any ideas?
  4. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

    Try re-installing the chip it may not be seated correcly


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  5. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

    w_tom wrote:
    >
    > Little Ghost wrote:
    > >
    > > Computer switches on, but screen remains black, no
    > > messages, no beeps. Tried the hard disk on another
    > > machine and it worked. Tried the network card on
    > > another machine and it worked. Tried 32MB DIMM
    > > memory module on another machine and it appears
    > > to be dead. Has AMD 500 MHz CPU and GigaByte main
    > > board.

    > Procedure is quite simple, straight forward, involves tools
    > that are inexpensive and commonly sold in major stores, AND is
    > not about hunting.
    >
    <snipped>

    Thanks for all responses!
    Ok, I didn't know about using a multimeter. I agree that it
    makes sense to test with one. I also did not know about
    removing the plug from the wall.

    The situation so far is this (before latest information):

    The computer boots from diskette and keyboard responds,
    but screen is black. No beeps, no messages. If monitor
    is disconnected, message appears on screen advising to
    check connection. When I connect the monitor I can hear
    that there is a connection being made. I tried two
    different PCI graphics cards, but screen remained black.

    Removing RAM memory causes beeps.
    I reset the motherboard via jumper as per instructions
    in GigaByte manual. I also removed the battery and put
    it back. I will get a multimeter ASAP;in the meantime,
    are these symptoms recognizable to anyone?
  6. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs,alt.comp.periphs.mainboard,alt.comp.hardware (More info?)

    >The situation so far is this (before latest information):

    >The computer boots from diskette and keyboard responds,
    >but screen is black. No beeps, no messages. If monitor
    >is disconnected, message appears on screen advising to
    >check connection. When I connect the monitor I can hear
    >that there is a connection being made. I tried two
    >different PCI graphics cards, but screen remained black.

    The board doesn't have AGP or onboard video ? (I have not seen a board that
    doesn't offer one of the two since socket7)
    If the board has AGP and you are using PCI, it's very likely it's defaulting
    to AGP as primary display, hence you get nothing.

    I had the exact problem you describe on an old PII board.. PCI card and no
    video.. turned out there was onboard video, just no header (plug) attached
    to the board for it.. pulled the cmos battery, left it a while and
    replaced.. finally it decided to use the PCI card as the default.. (though
    once I got a POST, I had to enter bios and change primary display to PCI, or
    else loading default settings brought the problem back).

    One other machine I also has this problem with.. this one didn't have AGP or
    onboard as it was an old Pentium 1 (socket7) board.. I pulled the battery
    and put it back after a while.. nothing.. tried clearing with the jumper..
    nothing.. out of interest I removed the clear cmos jumper entirely.. (so it
    was neither on reset nor normal) and to my surprise it worked.. however
    when I replaced the jumper the problem returned... in the end I put a new
    cmos battery in it, put the jumper to the normal position again.. and it's
    worked fine ever since ! (if anyone can explain this, please do!!)

    Regards,
    Chris
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