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Do I have a dead motherboard? No beep, no BIOS screen.

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August 16, 2008 11:43:28 PM

This machine ran beautifully for over a year. For several months now, this homebuilt machine would occasionally fail to boot or restart, but it's gotten to where it will successfully POST and boot maybe one out of 20 times. As of tonight, it will not boot no matter how many times I try. There's power - but no beep, no BIOS screen, just PSU fan, CPU Fan and case fan spinning. Pulled the board, and saw no sign of shorting.

Here's the specs:
Processor: AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ Dual-Core - 2.2GHz
Motherboard: Asus M2NBP-VM
2gb RAM (two sticks, 1 Patriot and 1 Crucial, tried together and individually)
320 gb SATA Hard Drive
160 gb IDE Hard Drive
LG DVD-RW IDE optical drive
Primo P4 ATX Mid Tower Case with 500w Power Supply
Added a GeForce 7600 PCI x16 for OS X
Added a Realtek 8139 PCI ethernet card for OS X

I am NOT doing any overclocking.

Thing's I've tried:

-- CMOS Battery (CR2032) was dead, at least my tester showed it just in the red, right below the green, so I thought, "AHA!" and went to get a new battery today. Tested it before installing, it showed a full charge. Did the jumper thing on the motherboard that clears the CMOS cache. Put in new battery - no difference. Dammit!

-- Backside of motherboard shorted against the case? I pulled the motherboard, which was carefully stood-off when I installed it, completely out of the case, laid it on a dry towel, and connected only the 2 power connectors to the board, monitor to the on-board video connector, and one stick of RAM (tried both sticks, one at a time). Attempted to power up to see if I'd get the POST beep - it should POST and show me the BIOS screen even if no drives are connected, right? But nothing. Just the PSU, CPU and case fans come on. No beep, no BIOS screen.

-- Power Supply? Pulled the power supply motherboard connector. Using a paper clip, I jumped the green and black pins to power up the PSU while the connector was unhooked. The PSU fan runs fine. With a digital multimeter, I tested all pins on the 24-pin ATX power connector, plus the 4-pin CPU power connector. All the voltages are correct. the 3.3v, 5.0v, and 12.0v values are all spot-on. I realize that is with no load, but it is something.

-- When the machine was running in XP, the ASUS motherboard monitoring app showed all voltages and temperatures to be normal. I rarely saw the CPU go above 45 Celsius.

-- Seating of RAM, Video Card, Ethernet? Pulled everything and re-seated it. Tried both RAM sticks, one at a time.

-- IDE Issue? Tried every possible permuation of Master/Slave, Primary/Secondary on the IDE chain with my IDE devices, plus every IDE cable I have lying around (which is quite a few). Also tried no IDE at all. No difference.

I'm at my wits' end! I am thinking the board is dead, since the PSU seems to test out, and on the rare occassion when the machine does boot normally, it runs with perfect stability for days and days in either XP or OS X, never had any sudden shutdowns out of nowhere.

Thanks for any help, all you Obi Wans out there.
August 24, 2008 1:59:55 AM

I'm curious what progress you've made, since I'm in a very similar boat.

I'm at work right now, so I can't rattle off my system specs, but they aren't too different from yours besides an Intel dual core, both gigs being Crucial, and both drives being SATA (primary is a single drive, secondary is a striped RAID). Oh, and the MB is a P5n32-E SLI .

Like you, the biggest detail is that the system worked (more or less) perfectly for the past 18 months, other than the occasional burp. I've made no significant hardware changes for months, and other than some drivers, no big changes to software, either (running XP SP2, 32 bit).

The chronology of my pain:

Yesterday morning, system behaved normally. While it was idle (I was walking over to wake it up), I saw a BSoD (my first in months). Started to reboot, and when I came back a few minutes later, saw a dreaded "System drive failure, insert boot disk" or something equally heart-stopping. Figured my C: head crashed, but didn't have time to troubleshoot.

Came back later, flipped on the power, BIOS POSTed, then went blank. I could hear a faint, regular clicking that sounded like it was coming from the HDD, but the dreaded disk failure didn't come up, just nothing (I may not have waited long enough).

After that, every time I cycle the power, I get what you get: fans spin, MB pilot light is on, no POST, no beeps, no video signal, even my keyboard lights stay dark.

I haven't started disassembling the system, yet, especially after reading so many people saying that wiping the CMOS did nothing. First up, I'm not even sure if my problem is my HDD, my MB, both, or neither, and I'd rather not spend the next month replacing everything piecemeal by trial and error.

Sorry if I'm hijacking your thread, but yours is the first I've seen that relates to a previously working system instead of a fresh build.

February 2, 2009 4:44:31 AM

I have two computers that I put together around the same time, one for my dad and one for my daughter. They both started having problems about six months apart and since I couldn't quickly figure it out I put them aside until I had time to work on them.

The symptoms: Each computer had the exact same symptoms. During use they would shut down. The symptoms increased in regularity until one would only stay on 2 to 5 seconds and the other would stay on until you tried to open a program our it just wouldn't boot.

The first would computer would not beep at startup and would not but, after the fan, harddrive and other activity started it would just shut down, no beeps. The other gave me 4 short beeps.

I could not have built two more different computers. One was a foxconn motherboard, the other a gigabyte motherboard. One was linux the other was windows xp.

The only thing that was common between the two pc's was the same Austin ATX power supply.

I switched the power supplies and when I did that the computers traded symptoms.

It makes me mad that is was so easy, I hope others can recognize the symptoms before trashing a mother board because power supplies are cheaper and easier to swap.

On a power supply testing note, I am not even an electronics hack, but I do own a multimeter. I poked my multimeter points into the end of one of the ide cables. red and black, the reading off the power supply that caused my computer to shut down in 3-5 seconds read 17.5 volts and the reading from the one that shut down when I tried to run a program ranged 3-7 volts, I think they were both supposed to read 12.

I only share that because there just isn't enough information out there and we should all share more details.
Good luck,
Grant
Related resources
February 2, 2009 3:27:09 PM

I am having the exact same issues as the OP and Sathar. I have tried everything the OP did as well, but I am thinking I will try replacing the PSU first before going through the hassel of getting a new MB. I am curious how this ends up and hope to see the OP post his results on whatever he ends up doing! :) 
February 11, 2009 2:43:38 PM

Wow, this sounds identical to the problem I had last night. Fans are working, motherboard light is on but no beeps and seemingly no video signal being transmitted. When I try and do a hard power down with the power button on the front, I get no response. It can power the system on, but the only way to turn it off is via the PSU switch on the back of the case.

I am having trouble finding the CMOS jumper (not quite as tech savvy as some) but also have the same ASUS P5N32-E SLI mobo. Any suggestions would be appreciated..
April 22, 2009 1:59:34 AM

jpeck said:
Wow, this sounds identical to the problem I had last night. Fans are working, motherboard light is on but no beeps and seemingly no video signal being transmitted. When I try and do a hard power down with the power button on the front, I get no response. It can power the system on, but the only way to turn it off is via the PSU switch on the back of the case.

I am having trouble finding the CMOS jumper (not quite as tech savvy as some) but also have the same ASUS P5N32-E SLI mobo. Any suggestions would be appreciated..



have you recieved any responses to your problem I am experiencing the same
May 23, 2009 7:27:00 PM

Bump. Same problem here. Home-built system worked beautifully for 18 months, then yesterday while watching a movie on the computer, it suddenly freezes (no blue screen this time, though I had gotten several blue screens earlier the same day - "Driver IRQL not less than or equal", "Page fault in non-paged area", "System_Service_Exception").

This was the nastiest freeze I have ever gotten, as neither Ctrl+Alt+Delete nor anything else could get a further response from the system. So I turned off the system using power button (I have to hold for four seconds to turn off), and afterwards it would not reboot. Case LED lights come on and the fans come on, but no POST, nothing gets sent to monitor, and I don't get the usual beep from the MoBo. The fans I'm talking about are the case fans (2x 120 mm both connected straight to the MoBo), PS fan, and graphics card fan .... I can't confirm CPU fan yet, as the aftermarket cooler mostly uses the large Cu heatsink anyway and always keeps system at < 32 C idle, 45 C under 100% load [Prime95 stress]).

Specs:

Intel Core 2 Duo e4500 @ 2.2 Ghz (wasn't running it overclocked during crash)
Gigabyte P35-DS3L S-series Motherboard (LGA 775 MoBo)
450-W PSU
4 x 1-gb Kingston DDR2-667 RAM
XFX Geforce 9800 GT 512 MB Graphics Card (replaced old 7200 card about three months ago)
WD 320 gb HDD (one and only hard drive)
Windows Vista Home Premium (latest service pack + updates)


I had purchased the MoBo brand new (almost two years ago), and was hoping to keep it around for a little longer, until I can upgrade to a Core i7/Socket 1366 system.

But before I order a new board, have any of you who have this same problem found a less-expensive solution? I've heard that resetting the CMOS and tinkering with the PSU haven't exactly helped this particular situation. Any input would be tremendously helpful.

Also, can anyone recommend a good, reliable brand for a new motherboard? Many of the MoBo problems I've read about on forums seem to be with Asus boards, and my current, presumably-dead one is a Gigabyte, so I'd like to avoid those two brands in the future, if possible ... I believe it's cheaper in the long run to get a motherboard that will last a respectable amount of time, rather than a cheap one that is likely to die in several months anyways. Thanks in advance for any helpful advice. =D


June 26, 2009 7:22:30 PM

Please add me to the list. System has worked since March of 06. A couple of weeks ago after a shut down it would not start. The fans would run HARD, the amber light which I associate with the hard drive activity would come on solid, there was no video, the amber light would go out. NO BIOS. I shut down and disconnected everything. I opened the unit. I then hooked everything back up and it started. The problem would come back after a shut down off and on. I noticed that with a good start, the fans immediately slow and quite and the amber light blinks as the system boots and the video comes up for a normal start sequence with XP. I decided to test the battery and found that while less than 3 volts, it was not much less. I changed it anyway. First reboot was successful. Problem returned. I had remembered seeing some white spot in the video, like snow, just prior to these start up problems. So I figured that I had a bad power supply. I replaced that. Good first start. Then problem returns. Like the rest of you I am stumped. That's what's brought me here. So far I've not seen anyone actually solve the problem. Because of the fact the fans all run so hard during a bad start, I am wondering if there is some sort of defective temp sensor that is keeping the system from starting to protect itself. At any rate I'll keep searching and if I find something I'll post back. P.S. I did try to start the system with a bootable usb device, but did not even get to bios.

Nubi
July 7, 2009 5:07:48 PM

Hi folks, all these things could be bad ram. My main box worked perfectly till it started having random shut offs etc. Replaced ram with some spares I had no more issues, sent the bad stick off for replacement; yeah lifetime warranty. Power supply can also go wonky for no reason, again have sparest to test but more than likely it's a bad memory stick. Swap sticks around or remove them all and put one in at a time, good way to test.
July 8, 2009 11:10:24 PM

Swampfoot said:
This machine ran beautifully for over a year. For several months now, this homebuilt machine would occasionally fail to boot or restart, but it's gotten to where it will successfully POST and boot maybe one out of 20 times. ... Thing's I've tried: ...
-- Power Supply? Pulled the power supply motherboard connector. Using a paper clip, I jumped the green and black pins to power up the PSU while the connector was unhooked. With a digital multimeter, ... All the voltages are correct. the 3.3v, 5.0v, and 12.0v values are all spot-on.

What is "spot on" - an answer that should report each voltage to three significant digits.

Measuring a power supply without being connected to the computer means a defective power supply can measure good. Your measurements must occur without making any disconnects.

Go back. Let's establish what is good - step by step. In this case in about 30 seconds.

Measure (and report to three significant digits) voltage on the purple wire where that wire connect to motherboard (push probe inside the nylon connector).

Also measure voltage on the green and gray wires both before and when power switch is pressed. Report those numbers and behavior as switch is pressed.

I expect these numbers to remain constant at zero. However these numbers are also important. Measure voltages on any one of orange, red, and yellow wires as the switch is pressed.

The power supply is only one component of the power 'system'. Once those numbers are posted, then the 'system' will be defined AND you will learn what those wires actually do.

Meter tests far more than the battery tester. For example, if the cell was 2.8 volts, then the battery was still good but ready for replacement maybe in the next 6 months. If the battery was zero (as suggested), then the motherboard may have a serious problem. Better than any battery tester is a multimeter due to so much information imbedded in its three digit number.

Maybe confirm the new battery has proper voltages without removing the battery. Most likely will be good - above 3.0 volts. However you are there with a meter. Confirm that a motherboard problem does not exist.

Once the power supply 'system' is known good, then numerous other suspects can be dealt with. Before anything else can be moved from 'unknown' to 'good', first the entire power supply system must be moved from 'unknown' to 'good'. Currently that entire system is still 'unknown'.
August 1, 2009 9:57:40 AM

:cry:  Gee's! I'm glad I found this topic cause my HP Pavilion A6437C (see specs on HP support.com ) Slimline Desktop E2200 Intel Foxconn NAPA mobo is doing the the very same indentical thing. Have this concern posted on many other computer forum sites & on HP support forums. As usual, HP wants me to send it to them for testing & yeh! they want my hard earned money & they charge too much. The Foxconn mATX board has 12 volts power to all the plug & play devices. The hsf spins up fast for a second then slows down. The frt. power lite comes on blue & the psu lite comes on as well & the fan is spinning. All fans are running & the hdd is spinning. Tried a new bios programmed chip. Tried new cmos batt & jumper pins procedure. It has no usb, monitor,mouse,keybaord or sound. No beeps. The ethernet port on board is lit up. When the system powers up, the keyboard lites at the top lite up for a second then go out. Kinda like the board has a short internally. Tried a new 400 watt psu. Done all the testing. even took the board out. Tried a 4 digit post card but not too familiar with all the codes it sets. Hard to decifer them. :pt1cable:  I'm thinking the mobo is gone or it might be a bios concern. Having a hard time trying to figure out how to make a bootable cd so I can make a bios flash cd. HP has a file that may fix it for system hangs that has a memory card reader. Bought this pc off EBayknowing it had this problem. Real nice pc if I could just get it up & running again. Sure would be nice if all that had this problem would post back with their problem fix, if they got them fixed. Thats why were here isn't it? :) 
a c 156 V Motherboard
August 1, 2009 2:17:58 PM

The following thread was originally designed for problems with new builds. But the troubleshooting techniques will apply to any dead system.
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/page-261145_13_0.ht...

Most of these problems sound like power problems created by the use of cheap generic power supplies. Replacing one with another is not necessarily going to help. None of these systems require a lot of power, but they do need good PSU's: Corsair (my first choice), Seasonic, PC P&C, Antec Earthwatts (stay away from the Basiq line, they cut too many corners to hit their price point). There are a few other really good brands, but those come to mind.

Aidoneus, you are jumping to delusions. :)  You do not even know for sure that your problem is caused by your Gigabyte motherboard. Granted, it might be. But right now, you do not know.

I have standardized on Gigabyte motherboards. I have 4 systems (2 highly overclocked) running on them, and so far, they have been very reliable.
August 1, 2009 4:45:26 PM

:)  I might if I may add one more statement then i'll shut up. When using my psu tester the -5 volt led does not lite up but the rest of them do. Is this a normal thing? This is a great site for suppor. Keep it up. :bounce: 
August 1, 2009 11:36:50 PM

compdude61 said:
:)  I might if I may add one more statement then i'll shut up. When using my psu tester the -5 volt led does not lite up but the rest of them do. Is this a normal thing?

-5V is normal. Other voltages could be completely defective. That tester reports only "it could be" answers. Did you read this since it applies to your tester: Measuring a power supply without being connected to the computer means a defective power supply can measure good. IOW tester reported nothing useful. Either you have "it could be" (which is what you had when you started). You know exactly what you knew before using the tester – it might be good or might be defective. "It is definitively this" answer is the only useful one. Numbers are required. How to do that was posted previously.

After a long list of 'changes' (none justified by any collected facts), a solution is no closer. For example, how many items do you now know are 'definitively good'? None.

Step one - learn what is wrong. Most of that is done without disconnecting even one wire and requires numbers. Step two - replace something only because something in step one identified the suspect. Currently you did not do the necessary work in step one. That means numbers.

You are thinking a motherboard might be bad. I (who even designed computers at the chip level) am thinking a majority of parts are still suspects - that you have no reasons to conclude due to insufficient facts and information. So that I can provide even one useful answer, you must provide those requested numbers. Otherwise, just keep wildly replacing parts until something works.

Did you know about the power supply controller? CPU is a slave to it. Critical. And completely unknown until you provide those 3 digit numbers. Just one of many devices defined ‘definitively’ by a few numbers. You have no idea, yet, how much information is in those few numbers.
August 2, 2009 1:50:10 PM

westom said:
-5V is normal. Other voltages could be completely defective. That tester reports only "it could be" answers. Did you read this since it applies to your tester: Measuring a power supply without being connected to the computer means a defective power supply can measure good. IOW tester reported nothing useful. Either you have "it could be" (which is what you had when you started). You know exactly what you knew before using the tester – it might be good or might be defective. "It is definitively this" answer is the only useful one. Numbers are required. How to do that was posted previously.

After a long list of 'changes' (none justified by any collected facts), a solution is no closer. For example, how many items do you now know are 'definitively good'? None.

Step one - learn what is wrong. Most of that is done without disconnecting even one wire and requires numbers. Step two - replace something only because something in step one identified the suspect. Currently you did not do the necessary work in step one. That means numbers.

You are thinking a motherboard might be bad. I (who even designed computers at the chip level) am thinking a majority of parts are still suspects - that you have no reasons to conclude due to insufficient facts and information. So that I can provide even one useful answer, you must provide those requested numbers. Otherwise, just keep wildly replacing parts until something works.

Did you know about the power supply controller? CPU is a slave to it. Critical. And completely unknown until you provide those 3 digit numbers. Just one of many devices defined ‘definitively’ by a few numbers. You have no idea, yet, how much information is in those few numbers.

Thanks Westom! I'll have to study your reply more carefully to understand the number thing. If you were talking about using a psu tester with digital readout. Mine simply has lites only. Now! I do have a four digit pci testing card That goes into the pci slot or can go into the ISA slot but it will not respond to the ISA slot for some reason. I do believe the psu is working fine cause I installed a new 400 watt in it's place but had no affect. A larger wattage but should make no differance. I went through all the testing like your testing procedure said to & have come to a conclusion that the mobo may be the culprit. I really like this site cause it has many helpful tips that most sites don't have. Keep up the good work. I'll keep digging. Thanks again! David
August 2, 2009 2:48:25 PM

compdude61 said:
Thanks Westom! I'll have to study your reply more carefully to understand the number thing. If you were talking about using a psu tester with digital readout. Mine simply has lites only.

A power supply tester with numbers is a multimeter. That tester with lights reports nothing useful and costs almost as much as the meter. Meters are sold mostly where hammers are sold – Lowes. K-mart.

Nothing requires study. Collect numbers and post them. Then learn what those numbers report - later.

Your IO bus tester is a useful and powerful tool. But long before going there, first collect those multimeter numbers. Just doing this stuff in that order means learning far more than you originally expected.

A defective power supply can boot a computer. A perfectly good supply can be defective in an otherwise good system. More examples of why swapping parts discovers little that is useful. Swapping parts (shotgunning) easily leads to erroneous conclusions for reasons too complex to discuss here. Get those numbers with multimeter because every answer will then not result in "I feel it might be". Those numbers mean your first definitive answer.

Don’t even look anywhere else. Don’t even ask why. Just get those numbers.
August 3, 2009 10:39:31 AM

:)  Well Westom! As I would have expected, the psu readings were all w/in specs. You can't rely on some of those psu testing help sites to be accurate on their help topics guides. One site was kinda off on guiding me in the right direction. But I got it down pac. I think i'll try the bios reflash procedure after I figure out how to make a bootable cd on my working machine & pop it into my HP. Still having problems with that. As I had mentioed earlier HP did have a update reflash SP4111 for my model mobo stalling with a memory card reader. That's my last testing then if it doesn't help then i'm getting a mobo. I'm exhausted on all the testing i've done. I plan on learning how to repair pcb's & replacing componants on the boards also. I know something about soldering pcb's. Want to learn more about how to test the capacitors to see if their bad since their the most common componant that go bad. All mine look good. Thanks for your guidance & helpful tips. David :) 
August 3, 2009 2:02:18 PM

1833251,17,436244 As I would have expected, the psu readings were all w/in specs. [/quotemsg said:

I asked for numbers from a specific procedure that required specific actions. Provide the numbers - not subjective answers. You don't appreciate what those numbers are saying. Again my reply says nothing useful. It will only be as useful as the facts you provide. You provide no facts - just a subjective declaration.

For example, what is the number when the system is off. What does the number do as the power switch is pressed. What specs did you use for those response times. And did you fully load the system? With what tasks multitasking to each peripheral? Of course, everything is fully connected - ignoring what some other web sites recommend.

Your help is only as good as the facts you provide. It said to give me numbers and responses to each color wire. No numbers means the best one can do is provide junk science assistance.
August 9, 2009 4:10:47 PM

:)  Hey Westom! I believe I have found my problem & it's not with the psu. It's a problem with the bios configurations. I've been doing some research on this matter & i'm thinking the person who owned this before might have tried to reflash the bios & it locked up on him. I did some Googling & the new bios updates from other viewers who flashed it to their similar desktops but another model with the same Foxconn NAPA GL8E had the same problem as mine. They had to take the computer to the shop & have them reconfigure the bios. to get it up & running again. Now I believe I could perform it if I could only figure out how to use BartPe software & create a bootable cd & burn it using my LightScribe DVD/RW drive on working computer then pop it into my HP machine. The reason I think it might work cause when I turn on my HP machine & all power goes to all my hardware the DVD/RW drives starts flashing rapidly so I know thats how the bios is configurated in the bios ofthe HP machine. I'm not too familiar with how to create the bootable cd in the BartPe software but i'm trying to lean. It states it can also be done in a MsDos environment. Man! :pt1cable:  thats way over my head on how to do it. Have you performed this prodedure before? Thanks for any comments on this matter. David
August 9, 2009 5:12:38 PM

compdude61 said:
I've been doing some research on this matter & i'm thinking the person who owned this before might have tried to reflash the bios & it locked up on him. I did some Googling & the new bios updates from other viewers who flashed it to their similar desktops but another model with the same Foxconn NAPA GL8E had the same problem as mine.


The problem with your research is that 20 different problems can create the same symptom. If 'A can create Z', then only 'A creates Z'? No. B, C, D, E ... also can create your Z symptoms.

If the BIOS did not flash properly, that computer cannot work - will not do what you posted. Either the BIOS loaded, or the old BIOS remains, or computer does nothing. Configuring BIOS is different from loading a BIOS. Configuring is changing setting (numbers and flags) in the CMOS - not loading a BIOS program.

Meanwhile, nothing posted says the power system is working. Your symptoms are also created by bad power. Evidence says BIOS is properly loaded and that the power system will not let BIOS execute. If the BIOS does not execute - an example of 'K can create Z'.

DOS is simply Windows where you type in the words on a command line rather than click an icon to enter those same words.

You even have a four digit pci testing card. That board will work immediately - but only if the power supply system first creates a signal that says, "Execute". Your board implies hardware is not creating that signal. So BIOS would never execute. You are making conclusions from flashing lights that can flash even when the motherboard computer does not work.

After so much labor, what is on a list of 'known good' items? Nothing. You have not yet accomplished anything. Until you post those power supply numbers and other requested facts, then nothing useful can arrive in reply. You are spending time reading wild speculation from people who did not even design this stuff. I did. You get no useful response from me because the facts - especially numbers - I need to be helpful are not provided.

Never move on to more suspects until the first one is vetted. Is it 'definitively good' or 'definitively bad'? Nobody knows. Everything is still 'undefined'. Nothing has been accomplished. That is how accomplishment is measured. Instead you are seeking solutions from people posting hearsay. 30 seconds to get power supply numbers means we can move on to the next suspect - even make that four digit pci testing card useful. But that means doing the first things requested - stop seeking answers from witch doctors and hearsay.

You still have nothing that says even the power supply system is working - other than some speculation. Until those numbers are provided, the power supply system remains 'undefined' - and nothing is accomplished. Doing all that research only discovers ghosts if the power system is undefined.

You must post those numbers to make step one towards a solution. Otherwise just keep replacing parts until something works. That is your only other alternative.
August 9, 2009 10:31:04 PM

:)  Gretttings Westom! Hers my reading from the psu- the 24 pin rd/pk-5.17-r-5.17-y-12.24-purple-4.99-5.0r-5.0--5.0 both lg. orange wires- 3.35- blue-11.97 grn.-4.53. Now with it powering up-lg.orange-3.28-3.35-lg. rd/pk-5.03-5.16-grn-0.21-0.03-lg-rd-5.17-5.11-yel-11.83-12.25-blue-8.64-12.23. Cpu 4 pin yellow-12.24. Molex 4 pin-yellow-12.24-rd-5.17-floppy 4 pin-yellow-12.24-rd-5.16. 4 pin Cpu fan while powering up- yellow-11.24-12.12,24-rd-12.10-12.24-blue-3.48-2.48. The cpu fan brings up my attention cause the fan spins up fast when powered up then slows down to a crawl. Need any other readings let me know. Sorry for all the garbled up mess of #'s. I was going to copy & paste a pdf file from a site I downloaded from about the atx psu specs for testing the voltages but would not let me paste it here. :sweat:  Thanks for all your support. David
August 10, 2009 12:16:45 AM

If I understand what was posted. References to -r or lg. are confusing. Therefore means I somewhat doubt some of what I have read.

A) When power is off:
Green wire: Is that +4.53 volts (not -4.53)? 4.53 volts would be normal.
Gray wire: - not listed AND a critically important signal.
Purple wire: a stable 4.99 or 5.00 volts. But I don't understand what all those other following numbers mean.

Blue wire: is that -11.97 or + 11.97 volts. Either way, that is defective.
Orange wire: -3.35 or 3.35 volts. Again, defective.
-r: Is that red? 5.17 volts. Again defective.
-y: Is that yellow? 12.24 volts. Again defective.

Each is defective because there must be no voltage as ordered by the green wire.

B) Moving on to "with it powering up-". First should be listed are the green, gray, and purple wires.
Green: Is that 0.21? I don't know what 0.03 is. However those numbers would be OK.
Purple wire not listed.
Gray wire not listed.

lg.orange: Do you mean orange? Is that 3.28 within a second? 3.28 volts is marginal when considering other voltages. But within spec and sufficient to permit booting.
rd/pk: Is that red? 5.03 or 5.16 volts is good.
yel: Yellow wire at 11.83 or 12.25 is good.
blue: Not asked for and not relevant.

By guessing (only a preliminary conclusion) - those voltages are stable. However the critical gray wire voltages are not provided. Power off voltages on red, orange, and yellow make no sense; imply a problem and a reason for weird computer operation. Are those numbers correct or did I simply read what was posted wrong?

The gray, orange, yellow, and red wire voltages should change in response to the power switch and be stable within a second. With meter delays, stability could take less than two seconds. But the red, orange, and yellow wires must be stable faster than the gray wire. I am guessing that is what you saw and need confirmation.

What you are looking at: Purple wire is power to the controller electronics so that it can monitor the power switch and remember how the switch was last pressed. Green wire is the power supply controller ordering the power supply to power on. Those 0. 2 and less voltage numbers mean the supply should power on AND that a sufficient safety margin exists - that other hardware parts in that circuit are working properly. Just a sampling of so much more information embedded in those numbers.

You report voltages on the red, orange, and yellow wires when none should exist. Are you reporting correctly or is hardware defective?

Voltages on other connectors are irrelevant. Fan defaults to full on. Then fan controller hardware takes over to throttle back that fan. Fan reports little other than its and its controller is working. Not relevant to your problem.

Posting those ATX specs and *.pdfs provides nothing useful. Other facts necessary to 'massage' those numbers are not found there. For example, what number does the spec give for yellow wire? 11.4 volts? A reading of 11.7 or less means a defective power supply (especially later when the system is truly drawing a load and the supply can be fully confirmed). Also relevant are relations between those numbers. But for now, we are only concerned about those numbers during boot.

These numbers only discuss whether the system should boot. Other numbers taken with the system fully loaded will determine if the system is fully OK. Irrelevant for now. Before definitively answers that boot question, first, 1) what are the numbers on the red, orange, purple, and yellow wires when the system is powered off? And 2) what are the gray wire numbers? Only then do we move on to the next step.

BTW, you motherboard should have some type of speaker or sound (beeping) device? Does it? Another important diagnostic tool only if your board has some beeping device. Does the board beep or can you identify a small round 'beeping' device?

Finally, this is an HP? Which model number so that HP information specific to your machine can be obtained from the HP web site?

OK. With missing information provided and corrections to what was posted, we may have achieved one step towards a solution. Sentences 1) and 2) first must be answered.

August 10, 2009 11:47:51 AM

:cry:  Hey Westom! i'm deeply sorry for those goofups. Maybe this will explain alot better. I spent an hour last night testing it correctly. The model is a HP A6437C Foxconn NAPA GL8E mATX with a Intel E2200 dual core cpu & a Asus HSF.Yes it does have a onboard speaker but it does not beep at all. Nothing coming out of speakers either. This board does not have a on board lite like some do to tell you the board is powering up. The keyboard lites nums,caps & scroll when machine powers up come on for a split second then go out. The HSF spins up rapidly when powers up then slows down to a crawl like iI mentioned earlier in my post. If I unplug the 4pin cpu power plug on the board, the fan spins up fast & stays fast like something is dragging it down. Plug it back in & it slows down again.

20 pin readings by pin numbers with psu on not powered up Powered up readings with button pressed
1--0.00 11- 0.00
2--0.00 12-0.01 1. +3.28 to +3.35
3- com 13-com 2. +3.10 to +3.35
4- 0.02 14-+4.53 4. +4.90 to +5.17
6-0.02 16-com 8. +0.06 to +5.07
7-0.00 17-com 9. +4.99 to +4.99
8-0.00 18-blank 10. +11.83 to +12.25
9- +4.99 19-0.02 11. +3.33 to +3.35
10- 0.00 20-0.02 14. power off 4.53 to power on 0.05 to 0.03
19. +4.59 to +5.17
Now powered up on statis 20. +4.28 to +5.16
1. +3.35 11. +3.35
2. 3.35 12. -12.21
3. -com 13. com
4. +5.16 14. 0.03
5. com 15. com
6. +5.16 16. com
7. com 17. com
8. +5.07 18. blank
9. +4.98 19. +5.16
10. +12.23 20. +5.16

The Molex,floppy,cpu 4 pin readings are good.
You know, I mentioed earlier that I had tested it with a new psu 400 watt & it stiil would not boot. ( had the same pins) as my existing 250 watt psu.
The monitor goes into power save mode & the monitor lite power button just flashes on & off. Let me know if this helped. While I wait for a response back,I am going to install a exter floppy drive & see if the floppy port on the board will have power & read the floppy drive.

I really hope this explains it more better for you
I really do appreciate your concern & support indeed. David
During this process I am learning more about spacing my paragraphs correctly.
Hope it's not that bad.
August 10, 2009 12:06:45 PM

Missing powered readingswith button pressed.
1. +3.28 to +3.35
2. +3.10 to +3.35
4. +4.90 to +5.17
8. +0.06 to+5.07
9. +4.99 to+4.99
10. +11.83 to+12.25
11. +3.33 to +3.35
14. power off +4.53 to power on 0.05 to0.03
19. +4.59 to +5.17
20. +4.28 to +5.16

Dont know why they missed that when I submitted it.
August 10, 2009 11:35:56 PM

Grantt said:
I have two computers that I put together around the same time, one for my dad and one for my daughter. They both started having problems about six months apart and since I couldn't quickly figure it out I put them aside until I had time to work on them.

The symptoms: Each computer had the exact same symptoms. During use they would shut down. The symptoms increased in regularity until one would only stay on 2 to 5 seconds and the other would stay on until you tried to open a program our it just wouldn't boot.

The first would computer would not beep at startup and would not but, after the fan, harddrive and other activity started it would just shut down, no beeps. The other gave me 4 short beeps.

I could not have built two more different computers. One was a foxconn motherboard, the other a gigabyte motherboard. One was linux the other was windows xp.

The only thing that was common between the two pc's was the same Austin ATX power supply.

I switched the power supplies and when I did that the computers traded symptoms.

It makes me mad that is was so easy, I hope others can recognize the symptoms before trashing a mother board because power supplies are cheaper and easier to swap.

On a power supply testing note, I am not even an electronics hack, but I do own a multimeter. I poked my multimeter points into the end of one of the ide cables. red and black, the reading off the power supply that caused my computer to shut down in 3-5 seconds read 17.5 volts and the reading from the one that shut down when I tried to run a program ranged 3-7 volts, I think they were both supposed to read 12.

I only share that because there just isn't enough information out there and we should all share more details.
Good luck,
Grant



Hey what are your system specs? I just now found out that my CPU is a 125W and my board supports only 95W. I believe that my MB has possibly fried.
August 10, 2009 11:59:02 PM

It depends on who you were asking. If you were referring to me, I have a HP A6437C slimline desktop with a Foxconn mATX NAPA GL8E,Intel E2200 Pentium Dual Core 2.20 Ghz/IM/800/06. Mobo product #KJ400AA17 March 2008 Ser# MXU8120M9H. This board is very hard to find brand new. I guess Westom got burn't out on me. I may just for the heck of it purchase the same psu for my system & pop it in & see what happens. I have a lot of psu's lying around my computer room, but none with that same specs & wattage.
August 11, 2009 3:07:35 AM

compdude61 said:
I spent an hour last night testing it correctly. The model is a HP A6437C Foxconn NAPA GL8E mATX with a Intel E2200 dual core cpu & a Asus HSF.Yes it does have a onboard speaker but it does not beep at all. Nothing coming out of speakers either. This board does not have a on board lite like some do to tell you the board is powering up. The keyboard lites nums,caps & scroll when machine powers up come on for a split second then go out. The HSF spins up rapidly when powers up then slows down to a crawl like iI mentioned earlier in my post. .


Adding pin numbers means you consulting someone else and therefore have made concluions from information not requested. That causes confusion. Adding to what I asked for only confused issues. Forget everything you provided to learn from what is provided below. Forget everything except what you saw on any one red, orange, yellow, green, gray and purple wire. And what you answered concerning the speaker. Now appreciate the massive - so much - information that came only from those requested voltages.

The power supply controller is ordering the CPU to execute. So finally we have accomplished only one thing. We know the power supply system is 100% (definitively) good. Only now can we move on to other suspects - and never look back.

What you saw from those numbers: when the power switch was pressed, green wire ordered the power supply to power on. The power supply sees all critical voltages obtain minimum values. Then we confirmed those value are sufficiently above what is required. Power supply tells the controller (via gray wire) to let the CPU start working. Entire power supply system is 100% good.

According to those numbers, your system is not consumed any significant power.

Next, CPU only looks at a very few system functions. It reads a first instruction from the BIOS to start setting up other functions. IOW you could remove all disk drives, sound cards, network cards, keyboard, mouse, etc and the CPU does not care.

The CPU starts by viewing only a few items, putting letters on the video (using the most primitive video functions), and announcing problems with speaker beeps. One of the first things checked is memory. If memory is not seen, then CPU beeps the speaker. Simply remove only memory boards. If CPU executes and if speaker is working, the CPU beeps that speaker using almost zero hardware. But CPU does not execute; it does not even beep the speaker.

( BTW: speaker – not the soundcard speaker. Soundcard is just as irrelevant as the mouse and disk drives. A tiny speaker on the motherboard that only beeps.)

No letters on the video. No speaker beeps. Now the numbers of suspects has been reduced from so many hundreds to maybe only 20. (Not even on the list of many hundreds suspects is disk drive, keyboard, etc - discussed later). Very few functions are necessary for a CPU to execute and beep the speaker. So now we have limited failure to maybe twenty suspects; and all are on the motherboard.

I assume you have connected the power connector near the CPU. Failure is probably in a tiny area of motherboard near CPU and adjacent large support chips - also called the Northbridge and Southbridge.

A failure that is visible almost never exists. But it is all you have left to inspect without far more advanced equipment. Inspect for stray metal fragments or anything that might short the motherboard in a region around the CPU and those large support chips. Carefully remove the motherboard looking for something (such as a metal standoff) that might have broken through a green coated solder trace. Maybe inspect for a cracked trace or some other mechanical defect in that area.

All but the rarest defect are not visible. We have reduced the defect area only to components in a small area of the motherboard. If the defect is not visual, you have no alternative but to replace the motherboard.

If I was to bet on a suspect (if I was a Roulette player), I would bet on a total failure of the CPU power supply - a function powered by the four (or six) pin connector near the CPU. That failure means a motherboard replacement.

You made analysis far more difficult by discussing things such as the keyboard lights. Keyboard, disk drives, etc all separate computers. Those computers do nothing to impede the main (motherboard) computer. Their actions mean nothing because the meter reported the only important fact.

The fact that the speaker did not beep means the CPU (or an adjacent function) is not operating.

Now, for that pci status board. Hopefully you always disconnected the AC power cord before installing or removing that board. Go back to what you saw on the purple wire. It was always 5 volts both before and after power switch was pressed. If you installed or removed anything when that purple wire had power, then you might have causes hardware damage. That caution even applies to the PCI status board. Always disconnect power cord before installing or removing any computer part or peripheral card. Another thing learned from those multimeter voltages.

Assuming the PCI status board is working, it would have posted some numbers as soon as the CPU starting executing. No numbers? Either that board was defective or it confirms what the speaker reported - CPU was never executing even after told to do so by the power supply controller.

Maybe search the internet for others whose HP Pavilion a6437c was disassembled in the computer junk yard - get that used motherboard.

Appreciate how much information was only in those six voltages (and why all that other information only made learning even more difficult). It took almost forever to get useful numbers. Excessively complicated by reading what others posted, listing pin numbers (which only confused everything), providing other useless voltages, discussing fan and describing keyboard and disk drive lights.

Also notice a fast analysis by disconnecting nothing until the very end (and then only the memory boards).

August 11, 2009 10:39:00 AM

:(  Sorry Westom if I didn't satisfy you 100% in getting the numbers the way you requested. But at least we accomplished something that far. I suspected the psu was ok in the first place since I installed the new one in its place & even went as far as installing the one in the HP in another one of my pc's & it worked as well in it. But the good thing is you taught me how to test one. Why do some boards have a little light on the boards & some don't. I think they all should have one onboard. For the pci card, or any other device plugging them into the board, I always power down the system & then unplug the psu & then puch the power button to draw all voltage from it. I watched the dvom while hooked to one of the pins with voltage & you could see the voltage slowly decreasing little by little. Thats why they say, never touch any portion of the board till it becomes stable.

You are a great teacher & should be a moderator. For the removing hardware one by one & removing the board for inspection, I did all that in the beginning. I pulled the board & put it on of my wifes cutting boards which by the way she didn't like it. Used my Radio Shack magnifying long arm device with lite that clamps to the desk & searched the whole board over for things you spoke of & the board was completely clean. If you noticed on the HP support site about my system, it is a pretty new system. Only been out since June 08. Thats for the mobo though.

I assumed the memory chips were ok & didn't have the funds to just go out & purchase one chip to see if that was the culprit. No other system in my room to use in them to test. Its hard to believe both chips would go bad together. You don't see it happen much, but it does from time to time. I even took an eraser & cleaned the contacts even though they looked clean.

The pci card when I turn on the system it starts flashing numbers rapidly where you can not read them. I forget what they call that, but I believe it is a normal thing at first. It has a 4 digit readout display. When resetting it again it displays a FF in the first window & cannot remember what displays in the second two windows but had numbers. I figured when I purchased it, I assumed it would have an instruction book to guide me but I had to go to the Awards site to get the list of numbers to see if any were in there. If you are a expert with one of these things it would be great if you could give me some guidance on recogniziing the numbers that displayed. I can reinstall it later & write down all the number & letters it displyed & get back to you later if you like.

You had already said if I heard you correctly the board was toast. I forgot to mention earlier, I did purchase a Celeron cpu that matched my specs & it did not help it a bit. Even went as far as inspecting the cpu pins on the board for any that would be out of place & they all looked in place. That magnifying glass comes in handy.

I'll close for now & hope to hear from you again later. Have a great day! David
August 11, 2009 4:21:35 PM

> Why do some boards have a little light on the boards & some don't. I think they all
> should have one onboard. For the pci card, or any other device plugging them into
> the board, I always power down the system & then unplug the psu & then puch
> the power button to draw all voltage from it.

That light is typically reporting purple wire voltage exists; that the supply is still connected to AC and putting power on the board. However another type of light is for hot popping. Software makes changes and then turns on a light to says, "it is safe to remove that board while powered." Hot popping requires a special designed motherboard. Never saw one. But hot popping is a design found in military electronics. You have probably never seen a board designed for hot popping.

That PCI status board is displaying numbers output by the CPU as it executes the BIOS. Those numbers will be unique to the motherboard manufacturer. The card is simply a device to display those manufacturer numbers. When something in the BIOS locks, the displayed number is the function that has failed. But in your case, it appears the CPU is not even executing any BIOS - therefore no numbers to display OR garbage from a bus that is only wildly flaying - doing nothing constructive. With all bus bits at one, and a random spike on the clock line, the PCI status disply would show a number from the last clock line spike - FF.

The failure location includes CPU and motherboard circuits. CPUs are so robust as to almost never fail. A 'bet' made eariler, one failure point is a power supply dedicated only to and adjacent to the CPU. This supply, for example, must go from less than one amp to tens of amps - in only microseconds. A challenge. This supply is also additional protection for the CPU. Rarely is a CPU damaged. If an Intel CPU, you could remove the heatsink and it still would not be harmed. CPUs are that robust - rarely fail.
August 12, 2009 12:45:00 AM

Very well put Westom. You must have a degree in some sort of course from college.You explain things in such detail that sometimes it hard to decifer. My hats off to you. OH!! I don't wear a hat. Gives me a headache. Thanks for the crash course on the psu. Have to get rested up for work tommorrow cause I have alot of diesel's to fix. That much I do know about. Have a great evening. David.
August 12, 2009 9:09:30 AM

:hello:  Greetings Nancy0725 & welcome to the board. Some of these boards have the jumper switch & not a pin is located on the back I/O board between the ps/2 port & the optical port. Others have it under the second graphics card but you have to remove it to gain access to it. Is yours a water cooled board? You can Google a question about your board & get some answers about anything about your board. ;) 
August 13, 2009 4:34:42 AM

For anybody still looking for why the motherboard doesn't give any beeps, let me share with you this little tidbit I found in my motherboard documentation:

After you plug in the main power connector, there is another one you may have missed.

The second connector will either be an 8-pin or a 4-pin. This is the auxiliary power connector found next to the CPU and you do not need an 8-pin plug there unless you are using a high end CPU, or if the system will be overclocked.

Failure to plug any 4- or 8-pin connector will result in the system not giving out any sort of display or POST signals.

Once I plugged in the 4-pin connector, I got my beeps. Check your motherboard manual for the pin-out to see if this is what you might be missing.

Hope this helps :) 
August 13, 2009 10:26:56 AM

:(  Thanks for that tidbit phantomwrite as you would put it. Mine has the 4 pin & that's what I checked since its part of the board power source.

I wish I could have been as lucky as you in my testing my board. I would be so happy if someone had the same problem with theirs & fixed it & would share their story with me. Thanks again! :)  David

Hey! moderators if your listening, I have a question for you. I'm looking for a post link for audio & video problems. Has to do with dvd movies from BB store & WMP or any video playing software playing choppy video & skipping sound problems. Like to add a post for it. Thanks for your help! David :) 
August 15, 2009 12:14:40 AM

Many posts above have already covered the symptoms and mine match them exactly, so no point in giving all the juicy details (if you are absolutely itching to know, my system specs are listed here, and I have an ATI X1300 in the PCI-E slot, 2x512MB of ram: identical sticks that have been there since the beginning).

I was just wondering if anyone has replaced the mother board yet and had good results, or if the problem persisted? I know some have changed power supplies with no improvement. I also know Westom would love for me to post lots and lots of numbers so he/she could post 19 paragraphs about how important they are, but a multimeter is going to cost me $99 while a new mother board is around $88, so I'd rather avoid that (although I would totally trust Westom to provide me with some interesting information if I did so... no offence intended Westom, but your posts are epic in length!).

I'll keep an eye on this thread and if I decide to take the plunge and buy a new motherboard, I'll certainly let you all know my results.
August 15, 2009 12:37:23 AM

:)  Hey! Areo_b! You said your system was the same? Not quite. Yours is an Athlon but if your having the same concern then you'll probably wind up having a bad mobo if you did the same testing. Man you don't want to get Westom started cause you may have to start a new post. I'm suprised this one hasn't been locked being so long.

I hated bumping Swampfoot off & I appoligize for that. He must have fixed his problem. I've already got my eye on the same Foxconn mobo for mine on EBay. I will be definately posting back when I get it installed & hope it gets it up & running. Can't be anything else that I can think of. Give us more detail on your problem. Might be something else nonrelated to mine or Swampfoot's.

Have a great weekend! :wahoo:  David
August 15, 2009 5:16:29 AM

aero_b said:
I also know Westom would love for me to post lots and lots of numbers so he/she could post 19 paragraphs about how important they are, but a multimeter is going to cost me $99 while a new mother board is around $88

50 posts to get you to use a meter. 30 seconds and two paragraphs to have a useful answer immediately after posting only six numbers.

A meter is less than $18. A fact easily learned when you do not entertain fear. Without the meter, then your problem is same as all other computer failures. It could be anything. You have three choices. 1) Get numbers using a meter. Then have an immediate answer. 2) Just keep replacing parts until something works. Or 3) just argue.

If you fear learning, then option 2 - spend wildly on new parts - is advised.

Once those six numbers were posted, compdude61 had an immediate answer. If you fear to learn, then replace parts using wild speculation. You might get lucky.
August 20, 2009 12:02:03 AM

Okay i have read this tread (and a few others) but i have so far not found anything similar to the problem i got.

When i push the power button the fans start spinning, so does the hdds and the fan on the gfx but there isn't comming the usual beep meaning everything is okay, instead there comes nothing. the display stays in powersave-mode, also if i restart or re plug it. the keyboards numlock light doesn't get lit even if i replug it or press the numlock button.

i have tried taking all the hardware out to test them one by one, still it doesn't work. i also tried to clear CMOS and take out the battery, still no change. then i tested the beeper by trying first without any hardware at all, and it beeped saying it couldn't find any memory, then i tried with the memory mounted and no gfx, and here is the interresting thing, the beeper should say it can't find the gfx but it doesn't. When i then try with everything installed it still doesn't say it can find the gfx nor does it say it isn't there?!

I read all of the posts here and from what i can understand from westom, then the cpu is the one testing and posting POST beeps so it can't be the power supply controller failing. what could be wrong??

btw i tried to use another monitor and it stayed in powersave-mode aswell...
i also tried 2 other keyboards, 1 usb and the other ps/2 they didn't work either. the mouse on the other hand did glow blue as it's supposed to do (it's a razer lachesis).

if you need specs or anything then write...

it would be really, really nice if someone could help me out on this one..
August 20, 2009 12:53:21 AM

twAst said:
I read all of the posts here and from what i can understand from westom, then the cpu is the one testing and posting POST beeps so it can't be the power supply controller failing. what could be wrong??


You did shotgunning. You wildly disconnected or replaced parts. You tried to fix it rather than first learn what is wrong first get numbers and facts. You may have even made the problem exponentially more complex by doing things such as the cmos fixing or video card swapping.

You must disconnect or replace nothing. Then take voltage measurements. Your symptoms are classic of a defective power supply 'system' - and a few other things. Shotgunning says we replace all ten other things. Diagnostic procedure says we see what is wrong – then only replace one suspect. You made a useful reply difficult. Why? Your replies will only be as useful as the facts you provide. You provided no numbers. Just speculation from “I moved this and that happened”. You tried to do with eyes what cannot be seen. You speculated even about the power supply being good. A completely defective supply can even boot a computer. And can do what you have seen. Why do you know the supply is good? Speculation. You did not first get numbers.

Put everything back exactly as you started. Take the requested measurements of six critical wire before, and when the power switch is pressed. And then (which you cannot yet do) with the system under maximum load.

Solutions only happen when you break a problem down into parts - then analyze each part - one at a time. Until you have numbers that say the power 'system' is good, then you have no idea - no matter what beeps come from a speaker. Until the power ‘system’ is proven, everything else that is good can act strange or defective. The only answer is one that is definitive. No definitive answers are possible until you have moved the power supply system from ‘still undefined’ to ‘definitively good’ (or ‘definitively bad’). Notice the real world is not binary. Notice more than two possible conditions.

Numbers from those six wires are so chock full of information that the last five posts would be too short to explain it. Want to know where to look next? Post those numbers as explained previously.

Your symptoms imply the power supply is good AND that the power supply is defective, and that other parts of the supply system are good, and that other parts are bad. All possible without specific facts – especially numbers.

BTW, get rid of the battery tester. Had you tested the battery with a meter, then numbers could have said so much more. 'Red area' tells us nothing usefu. Battery could have been perfecty fine for now - and for the next six months. But we will never know. Your tester was subjective - did not provide numbers that could have said whether the battery contributed to the problem.
August 20, 2009 12:54:46 AM

I was successful in fixing my computer. It now runs way better than the few weeks before the crash... my problem was the motherboard. I replaced it and kept everything else and it now works perfectly.

What follows doesn't belong here, but the information was somewhat hard to find so I'm reposting it here for good measure:

For those of you who have HPs with WinXP recovery disks, please note: HP keeps track of your hardware in a file on the recovery partition and you will get an error message ending with "Code Purple" when you try to recover Windows after replacing the motherboard. Code Purple prevents you from using the recovery disks on computers other than the one they were created from, so you need to stop the recovery process from checking your hardware configuration file.

Solution:

1. Recover Windows as usual (you will lose all data... hope you had a backup!)
2. Get to the file c:hp\bin\ConfigCheck\cfgchk.bak and rename it (or rename the run.py in the same folder)
3. Restart the computer and continue Windows setup.

Step 2 isn't too obvious to perform. I installed a linux distribution that had ntfs-3g included, then mounted the WinXP partition in linux and renamed the file through there. You should be able to do the same with a bootable linux distribution such as Knoppix (I think you can run Knoppix off the CD and get to the file, but I haven't tried).

Hope this helps.
August 20, 2009 1:45:05 AM

Great areo_b.
I'm waiting for my board to arrive. Should be here tommorrow or Friday. Going on vacation starting Saturday & will have pleanty of time to install it & see if it will launch. Maybe i'll get lucky & just power it up without having to reformat my hdd.
I've been told it should boot right up being the same mobo.

It's the twin mobo that my system has in it except the hdd is only a 300gb & not a 500gb like mine. It came out of a A6600F HP desktop. It is only 6 months old. I sure hope it goes all well.

Thinking of sending the bad mobo to a shop to see whats up with it & have it fixed for a spare or sell it.

Glad to hear you got yours up & going. Enjoy!

Maybe you can say the same about mine soon.
August 21, 2009 11:37:05 AM

Got my board in yesterday & plugging it in tonight. Was told by other forum members being the exact same board, it should boot right up if the board is functional.

Wish me luck! David
August 23, 2009 3:07:49 PM

Well darn!!! I took the motherboard out of the package & Yo & Behold by inspecting it before I installed it I found some cpu pins damaged.

He did say he had to wiggle the cpu around to get it to boot to Vista. Got me to wondering.

I've learned my lesson.

That really tees me off!

I will get my refund I hope.
August 27, 2009 3:34:23 PM

I gave up guys! Ordered another computer same model through HP products link for $269.00. Not too bad for a new computer & having a full 1 year warranty.
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
August 28, 2009 4:29:43 PM

I've had the same problem with my computer as everyone else. The one anomaly that I have is the optical drives cycle. Also the power and reboot buttons don't work. My system has not suffered any BSODs but has been freezing lately. My system uses quality components - Corsair, EVGA, AMD Phenom x3, Thermaltake, Gigabyte MB, etc. Since all these systems are different but suffer from a very similar problem I think the common denominator will most likely be bad BIOS/CMOS chip. The manufacturers pretty much buy from the same suppliers and there my have been a bad run of chips. One other note that supports my theory my motherboard has a dual BIOS and the system with not POST or access the BIOS. My motherboard is is a Gigabyte GA MA770 UD3 rev. 1. The board was purchase 3 months ago but it is an old version of this motherboard. They released a Rev. 2 an I suspect the chips on the board have been improved.
August 30, 2009 3:50:02 PM

I had the same problem more than 5 times. In three cases, all the components were new. In one case, It happened right after the RAM was replaced but the cpu still wouldn't boot after the old RAM was inserted. In the 5th case, the cpu just failed to boot - no boot, no beep, nothing on screen - after 2 months of use. In the other cases, i found that there
was some short between the motherboard and the case. (I disconnected everything from the motherboard except the processor, power supply,a stick of RAM, and the video cable and tested it out of the case.)

In all five cases, the system worked after the motherboard was replaced with the same model of motherboard. Now, the mobos were still under warranty so I sent the first 3 of them back for replacement but the Seller didn't find any defect and said the mobos were good. And true enough, when I tested them again they worked!Now I tested the other 2 mobos that I have already wrapped for replacement and they were already working. I think the problem was that the processor fan assembly was stressing the motherboard mechanically too much causing some components in the mobo to be disconnected. In the RAM replacement case, you see, you would push into the motherboard when inserting the stick of ram. So a solution here is to remove everything from your motherboard, maybe wrap it in a non-static bag if you still have one, then set it aside for a day or 2. Then test again. Of course, even if the machine works, you'll have doubts about its stability. That's why I'll still have my motherboard replaced if the seller would obligue.
September 8, 2009 11:00:24 AM

:) 
Thanks Areo_b for that valuable info.
Except mine has Vista on it.
I just got through last night purchasing a set of Vista recovery 5 cd set & I also found the same Foxconn NAPA GL8E board for my HP Pavilion A6437C machine.
Talked to HP chat the other night & they told me I would have to do the tattoo procedure.
Said I would get the ol' Code Purple message if I just pop the board in & hit the power button.
Thay also told me I would have to use the recovery cd's to get me back up & running again.
Why can't they just make things more simple these day's.
I don't have the income to just take my machine over to a computer shop & have them perform it.
Maybe you could help me get this prodedure done.
I'll be getting the board & cd's in a few days or by the end of the week. Sooner I hope.
HP told me to send the system to them once I got the board installed & they would take the hassel out of it all.
YEH RIGHT!!
I know how much they would take me for.
Would be more sutable to just go out & purchase another machine & be done with it.
I would but I want to learn more about this stuff.
I enjoy tinkering around with these machines.
Helps pass time away.
Help would be greatful!
David
September 16, 2009 4:18:57 AM

Silences444 said:
I am having the exact same issues as the OP and Sathar. I have tried everything the OP did as well, but I am thinking I will try replacing the PSU first before going through the hassel of getting a new MB. I am curious how this ends up and hope to see the OP post his results on whatever he ends up doing! :) 

I'm also having a problem like Op and Sathar. Home build working for 3 years with Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe with two Corsair 1GB sticks. I would get to BIOS post and then it would sit at a black screen for about 20 to 30 minutes, then finally show Windows loading screen, then usually work fine (occasionally freezing).
I ran diagnostics on RAM and HDD....all came back okay. I then tried experimenting.
I tried each 1 GB stick separately and they both worked perfectly. However, the problem would happen again if I put both sticks in together.
I was using SATA hdd's. I installed WinXP 2 times and still had the same problem. I installed WinXP on an IDE hdd, with SATA as secondary drive and everything works fine, even using both sticks of RAM.
September 16, 2009 4:22:10 AM

I'm also having a problem like Op and Sathar. Home build working for 3 years with Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe with two Corsair 1GB sticks. I would get to BIOS post and then it would sit at a black screen for about 20 to 30 minutes, then finally show Windows loading screen, then usually work fine (occasionally freezing).
I ran diagnostics on RAM and HDD....all came back okay. I then tried experimenting.
I tried each 1 GB stick separately and this eliminated the issues. However, the problem would happen again if I put both sticks in together.
I was using SATA hdd's. I installed WinXP 3 times and still had the same problem. I installed WinXP on an IDE hdd, with SATA as secondary drive and everything works fine, even using both sticks of RAM.
September 18, 2009 12:56:35 AM

To Swampfoot:

I have very similar symptoms. I have read through all of the posts and I'm going to order a new PS. I figure on ordering a quality one b/c I can always use it in my next box if it comes to that.

Back to my symptoms: Random power on problems. If I would shut down, I would have to unplug the the PS before the power button would power the box on. This started about 1 year after the box build and went on for a few months until this point. Now the fans and lights come on but the board will not POST or even bring up the BIOS. No video at all. MB just goes BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP constantly at the same beat (one per half second) and never stops. Its a Gigabyte board with nVidia chipset. I do not know the model---trying to find it on the board.

I will repost and say wether or not the PS fixed it.
September 18, 2009 1:16:15 AM

:(  Well amoebaman It looks as though for starters the mobo may be ok.
You might want to reset the bios if you know how to do that.
Then try a new PSU then post back.
Oh! You might want to give us your machine specs & if it has a PCI graphics card, list that as well.
Do you pay alot of high graphics games on it?
Thats where the graphics card comes in to play.
David :) 
!