Sorry I wasn't clear enough in my explanation of the problem, let me update things since I posted. When I got the unit my wife said that there was no power and the fan stopped. Later I found out that the fan went into hyper drive then the unit died. I found several posts relating to this same problem. I replaced the power supply and it cured most of the problems. Now it comes on and runs but won't boot up and the "D" diagnostic lite on the back is yellow , the other 3 are green. The message on the screen is" no boot device can be found." This is where I am now, any further help would be greatly appreciated...Lee
install a boot device?
Check the bios and see if the HDD is recognized and that the IDE/Sata setting is correct for your configuration. Test it in another pc.
You can replace it but check with Dell to see if there are any size restrictions for a new drive.
boot off the Win xp/vista/7 disk and test the drive oir format and reinstall the OS.
OK....quick update....hooked up the monitor temporarily to see any messages or if they have changed. I made sure all the cards and drives were installed correctly and then put the windows disk in the "C" drive, turned it on and now everything is fine, all 4 lites are green and it's booting up. Thanks to all the previous posters that helped steer me to the root of the problem. Without this forum it definitely would have cost me a lot more to repair. Also , I have seen a lot of posters bashing Dell products, this unit is over 6 years old and it's the first problem we have ever had with it, I also have a lap top that is about the same age and no problems with that either. I have to say ...I don't have any room to complain about Dell....Lee
Spoke too soon.....all the diagnostic lites are now green as I said and the boot process does begin but it halts and comes up with the same message....No boot device found....and then everything comes to a halt....I've checked all the cables and connections and they seem to be OK...tried again and the same thing happens.. Take it easy on me ...the last time I worked on computers they were the size of my living room...but I do need some help..thanks....Lee
Step one: boot into BIOS and check for your drive settings. Make sure the drive is recognized.
1.)if not, and nothing but the PSU has changed then change cables. Use another power cable, feel the drive while powered (Careful, just like working on the VAC systems) make sure it is getting power. Change the SATA/PATA cable if you can.
It could also be a dead drive. If you can try it in another system. You said your PSU blew up, that can damage a lot of components, and the HDD is an easy target.
2.)if the drive is seen in BIOS, then let us know. I assume it won't be.
Thank you...you are right....HDD not present....SATA drive not present.....cable seems to be ok.(not hot or melted anywhere) connections are solid, I don't have a spare to change out, I was leaning toward the hard drive before your response, I guess after I check to make sure the cable is good , I'll have to replace it.
There should be two cables on the sata drive, one is data and goes to the motherboard, the other is power and comes from the power supply. There may be a 4pin to sata power adapter on one of the molex (molex is what the atapi/Ide drives used)
Hey guys, thanks for the tips.....it's still not recognizing the hard drive even after I swapped it out with a new one. Can someone tell me the number designation on the pws plug that attaches to the drive, I just want to make sure I didn't make a rookie mistake and connected the wrong one. Also it keeps asking me to run a diagnostic disk , so I called dell for one and they say it doesn't exist ? Is this right ?....Lee
Alright so you have PATA drives is that correct? You can only plug them in one way.
With the new hard drive, it comes unformatted so it won't detect the drive as a bootable drive until you install windows.
Check BIOS to make sure it is installed. Let me know if you dont see it. If you dont, you may have further damage done to your system.
*also if your drive is PATA, make sure the drive jumpers are set to CS (cable select) or primary master. Check the drive instruction manual on how to do that or look closely at the pin configuration on the back of the HDD. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZUX9X8t23Y
Well..I'm still at it....I've checked the bios and it still is not recognizing the new sata drive. Also my drive does not have adjustable jumper pins like the other drives. mine does have a jumper block on the plug end as it should have except instead of 4 sets of 2 pins each..I have 4 sets of single pins with no jumper at all and a warning that it's for factory use only. No matter what I try ..I get the same result, no recognition of the drive.