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New Build Started Up Fine... Until... Need Help.

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January 21, 2011 4:03:11 AM

Hey y'all, first time poster.

This is my third self-build, haven't had a problem until this one.

Working with an ASUS M4A79T Deluxe Mobo, AMD Phenom II 970, 4GB GSKILL DDR3 1600, WD 10k RPM HDD, XION 600W PSU, and an XFX 5870 for a graphics card. In addition, also using an old Creative Labs sound card from a previous build and a random CD/DVD drive from a previous build.

So, first build in a few years, take my time putting everything in nice and neat.

Pressed the power button, everything was fine, POST and everything. First chance I get, I pop in my new W7 disc and install it to the HDD.

Get that all squared away and installed my Mobo drivers, rebooted a few times during that.

Here's where it all goes sideways. Pop in my ATI graphics drivers, get an error message when it attempts to read the exe file off the disk. I think this is just W7 being weird, so I persist and eventually it lets me install the drivers.... or so I thought.

It goes through the motions, then reboots... seemed a bit short to me. Turns out I had a system error, and it gave me the option to start windows up normally, or safe mode. So I load up again normally, drivers are nowhere to be found. Load them up again, without rebooting. The Catalyst Control appears, but says the drivers are not detected. So I load the drivers up -again- from the disk, and reboot manually.

Afterwards, won't boot. I press the power switch, it gets a half second of juice and then nothing. I switched the voltage on my power supply to one I've never used, all the fans start up, and the HDD is working away... but nothing on the screen... just black.

As an aside, threw in my old Nvidia 8800GTS, same deal.

Also tried powering up with each stick of RAM individually, same deal.

Read through the stickied list, didn't find anything that really suited the nature of my problem. Help appreciated! Would hate to see an 800$ investment ruined.

If I -had- to guess completely based on what's happening, I'd say it's the PSU, Mobo, or HDD that's the problem, in that order. Could still be the graphics card, but seems to me it'd improve with a completely different one being thrown in.

Thanks!

More about : build started fine

Anonymous
January 21, 2011 5:39:09 AM

Damn, that sounds complex.

First find out if your computer is running in the first place, you may be running blind, try to get it to boot in safe mode blind, by pressing enter or down then enter as if the option to boot in safe mode is displayed, that could tell you if your computer is running yet blind or it's not running at all.

This happened to me and I navigated blind, till I actually logged in and popped up the windows explorer search and played a random .mp3 song.

It could still be the graphics card as the it may have not recognized the drivers for the 8800GTS and was attempting to use the ATI card.

What about the BIOS, can you access that?

You could also try booting from Ubuntu disks, if you happen to have a spare hard drive, try that, make sure that it's completely empty so that it doesn't attempt to start anything up.

Also try to plug the hard drive into another computer with a spare SATA cable an power, then format it and put it back in the old PC.
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January 21, 2011 11:10:10 AM

'switched the voltage on your psu to one you've never used'?

What? I assume you mean you connected to one of the modular PSUs outputs?

The HDD certainly won't stop you from at least getting a display...

PSU is most likely culprit.
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January 21, 2011 12:46:00 PM

I dunno what it's called to be honest. On the back of my PSU there's an inlaid red switch that reads either 236 or 115. Fans will spin on the 236, but not on 115.
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January 21, 2011 12:49:14 PM

Quote:
Damn, that sounds complex.

First find out if your computer is running in the first place, you may be running blind, try to get it to boot in safe mode blind, by pressing enter or down then enter as if the option to boot in safe mode is displayed, that could tell you if your computer is running yet blind or it's not running at all.

This happened to me and I navigated blind, till I actually logged in and popped up the windows explorer search and played a random .mp3 song.

It could still be the graphics card as the it may have not recognized the drivers for the 8800GTS and was attempting to use the ATI card.

What about the BIOS, can you access that?

You could also try booting from Ubuntu disks, if you happen to have a spare hard drive, try that, make sure that it's completely empty so that it doesn't attempt to start anything up.

Also try to plug the hard drive into another computer with a spare SATA cable an power, then format it and put it back in the old PC.


No BIOS. Also, I don't think I have the confidence to navigate "blind", I dunno how I'd even know if it was working or not. I can't see anything, so... yeah, there's that.

Going to take everything out and put it back together... see if that helps.

Thanks for the input.
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January 21, 2011 12:55:59 PM

Tludt90 said:
I dunno what it's called to be honest. On the back of my PSU there's an inlaid red switch that reads either 236 or 115. Fans will spin on the 236, but not on 115.


That switch is designed to set the input voltage for the power supply. It can change by country. So check out this link, and see what your country's voltage should be. Setting it incorrectly can damage the hardware.
http://pcsupport.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=p...
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January 21, 2011 1:00:08 PM

aford10 said:
That switch is designed to set the input voltage for the power supply. It can change by country. So check out this link, and see what your country's voltage should be. Setting it incorrectly can damage the hardware.
http://pcsupport.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=p...


Yeah, I've always had it at the proper voltage. Just flicked it around to see if made a difference.

Taking everything out and re-installing it. Seeing if that helps.

Anyways, based on my symptoms do you think it could be an inadequate power supply? XION isn't the most notable brand, and it's several years old.
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January 21, 2011 1:02:03 PM

Connect only the CPU/HSF, PSU, and power switch. Everything else can be unplugged. Try to start up. Do you get signs of life, and a beep code?

If yes, put in your RAM. Still got signs and a beep code?

If yes, connect the video card.

Keep going until it fails to POST, or you get everything connected and running.
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January 21, 2011 1:20:34 PM

aford10 said:
Connect only the CPU/HSF, PSU, and power switch. Everything else can be unplugged. Try to start up. Do you get signs of life, and a beep code?

If yes, put in your RAM. Still got signs and a beep code?

If yes, connect the video card.

Keep going until it fails to POST, or you get everything connected and running.


Got a repeating loop of 1 long 2 short. Threw the RAM in and no beep code.

It won't start from my Case Power Switch though. I have to press the manual power switch on the ASUS mobo.
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January 21, 2011 1:35:20 PM

Try 1 RAM chip at a time. If it won't boot with one of the chips, try that chip in another slot. Try to narrow down if it's an issue with the RAM, or the slot.

What happens when you try to use the case power switch? Look at the motherboard manual, and make sure you have it on the correct pins.
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January 21, 2011 1:44:01 PM

aford10 said:
Try 1 RAM chip at a time. If it won't boot with one of the chips, try that chip in another slot. Try to narrow down if it's an issue with the RAM, or the slot.

What happens when you try to use the case power switch? Look at the motherboard manual, and make sure you have it on the correct pins.


Threw in the graphics card and plugged in my monitor, same thing. No codes, and black screen.

The case power switch works fine now, everything's plugged in correctly. Dunno what the deal with that was.

Will take the graphics card out and try the RAM. Also, is it possible that the graphics card isn't seated correctly? Or would it code?

I had some trouble fitting my mobo in against the back plate it came in, so it's a very tight squeeze with my PCI-e ports, figured the card might not be seated correctly. But it was working fine before.

Also, what about the HDD? Should I throw that in as well?
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January 21, 2011 1:53:18 PM

Took the graphics card out, tried each stick of RAM. It's back to not powering up again, it flicks on for a second and then dies.

Does the same thing now with no RAM in, flicks on and dies.
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January 21, 2011 1:53:25 PM

No, leave the hard drive unplugged for now. It's not needed until after the system is POSTing, and trying to boot.

Yes, be sure that the video card is seated all the way! You may need to take pressure off the motherboard, by loosening the motherboard screws a tad, and tightening the bracket screw on the video card.

If you don't have the PCIe connector plugged in, it should throw a code. But if it's not picking up a video card in the PCIe slot, then it'll likely just sit there quiet and dark.
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January 21, 2011 1:56:00 PM

Ok, remove the motherboard from the case. This is a pain, but it's necessary at this point.

Place the motherboard on a piece of cardboard next to the case. Do the same as above. Connect just the CPU/HSF, PSU, and power switch. If it doesn't shut down right away, as it is now, then it may be a short. Continue adding hardware, and see if you can get it to power up all the way, with the board outside the case.
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January 21, 2011 1:57:49 PM

aford10 said:
Ok, remove the motherboard from the case. This is a pain, but it's necessary at this point.

Place the motherboard on a piece of cardboard next to the case. Do the same as above. Connect just the CPU/HSF, PSU, and power switch. If it doesn't shut down right away, as it is now, then it may be a short. Continue adding hardware, and see if you can get it to power up all the way, with the board outside the case.


Will do! Planned on taking it out anyways, was such a pain to get in with the backplate that I figured I'd just re-do it sans back plate.
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January 21, 2011 2:18:02 PM

Alright. Removed the motherboard and tried to power it up on a piece of cardboard. It won't turn over to so speak, on 115v, but will on 230v. I'm in the US by the way, I live in a fairly old house, but the wiring has never given me trouble in the past.

So, does this point to the PSU or the Mobo being the problem. I would assume the PSU, if so, then can replace it no problem, just a quick trip to Best Buy/Computer shop.

Considering that this Mobo was bought when AM2+ didn't exist, and this is an AM3 mobo, might be some compatibility issues I'm guessing?
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January 21, 2011 2:35:48 PM

If you're in the US, you should see the 230 on that red switch.

Tludt90 said:
Considering that this Mobo was bought when AM2+ didn't exist, and this is an AM3 mobo, might be some compatibility issues I'm guessing?

Do you mean you got the PSU before AM2+ existed?

If you've got those minimum parts connected, and aren't getting anything, then yes, I would try a different PSU.
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January 21, 2011 2:41:17 PM

aford10 said:
If you're in the US, you should see the 230 on that red switch.


Do you mean you got the PSU before AM2+ existed?

If you've got those minimum parts connected, and aren't getting anything, then yes, I would try a different PSU.


Yes, I got PSU for my previous regular AM2 mobo, before AM2+ came out I think. Might be wrong, but just trying to indicate it's relatively old.

Will be out of town until tomorrow afternoon. Will swing by and pick one up, 700-800w likely. Might just get an 800w Corsair or something if I can find it, a good name brand and would be good if I ever decide to go Xfire.

Thank you so much for your insight, advice, and help! I am really impressed.

Will report back when that's done with success/failure.

Also, I'm pretty sure my outlets are 115-120v, always thought 230v was overseas.

Any suggestions on what else it could possibly be? Defective mobo perhaps? CPU? At least you've managed to lower the variables with your advice!

Thanks again.
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January 21, 2011 3:18:32 PM

Yes, the 230v are mainly European (I believe) nations. Yes, if you're in the US, they should be 115v, and I think I misspoke earlier. You should see the 115 on the red switch.

Yep, Corsair would be a good one. Just remember, that quality is more important than the wattage stated on the box. They don't always perform like they claim. And you don't want a time bomb.
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January 21, 2011 3:32:57 PM

aford10 said:
Yes, the 230v are mainly European (I believe) nations. Yes, if you're in the US, they should be 115v, and I think I misspoke earlier. You should see the 115 on the red switch.

Yep, Corsair would be a good one. Just remember, that quality is more important than the wattage stated on the box. They don't always perform like they claim. And you don't want a time bomb.


Right right, which is why my mind jumped to Corsair. Was looking at one when I was piecing together this build, but it put me over budget. Will just have to get one, was eyeing the modular ones and if they have them at my local Best Buy/Computer parts store, would save me the hassle of waiting for Newegg, as good as they may be.

But like I said, other than the PSU... does the motherboard stick out as the next possible culprit if this doesn't work?
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January 21, 2011 3:40:17 PM

Yep, motherboard would be my next thought.

Good luck. Let me know how it turns out.
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January 21, 2011 3:43:40 PM

aford10 said:
Yep, motherboard would be my next thought.

Good luck. Let me know how it turns out.


Will do, and thanks so much for your help.
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January 22, 2011 8:32:38 PM

aford10 said:
Yep, motherboard would be my next thought.

Good luck. Let me know how it turns out.


Alright, snagged a Thermaltake 850w PSU. Popped everything in, booted right up just fine. Now contending with another issue however.

Every time I try and install the ATI drivers, it only installs the multiple-Monitor management system. Still says ATI driver is undetected. Furthermore, when I do dxdiag. It literally says -nothing- for the display tab. So... I assume either I'm contending with defective drivers, or a defective video card.

Downloading new drivers off the XFX site to see if they're the issue.

If not, I'll have to send the graphics card back.
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January 22, 2011 9:24:47 PM

New drivers fixed the problem. Okay, now on to download programs and games! Yipee, everything's workin' just fine now.
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January 23, 2011 12:48:18 AM

Sounds good. Thanks for the update!
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Anonymous
January 24, 2011 12:47:28 PM

Tludt90 said:
New drivers fixed the problem. Okay, now on to download programs and games! Yipee, everything's workin' just fine now.


You download pirated games?- just wanna do a survey, cause I think that I'm the only one on earth that actually buys PC games.
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January 24, 2011 1:02:36 PM

Switching PSU's input voltage select switch to 220V for experimenting is not advised....!
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January 24, 2011 1:04:48 PM

Quote:
You download pirated games?- just wanna do a survey, cause I think that I'm the only one on earth that actually buys PC games.


Not all downloaded games are pirated.
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Anonymous
January 24, 2011 1:25:25 PM

Oh, so like steam and stuff?
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January 24, 2011 1:27:18 PM

It's possible. We try to give people the benefit of the doubt.
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!