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Help-desktop-troubleshooting

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April 20, 2012 6:17:25 PM

I built this computer about 5.5 years ago (specs in sig. except video card is now ATI5670HD) Windows home 32 2Gb.

Last night while browsing the web the computer just froze and I hit the reset button, It booted and right after the desktop was displayed I got a blue screen with stop 0x0000008e, the next time I booted i got the same results except the stop code was 0x000008c. It then would not boot at all (display said no signal). I turned it off and waited 5 minutes, cleaned it's filter and removed the side panel. I then rebooted and it started, but before the blue screen I hit "start, logoff" and did not get the blue screen but an error message briefly flashed on the screen that some avast file was corrupt.

Now I thought I new what had happened, I had gotten a corrupt anti virus update, simple enough, restart in safe mode and uninstall avast.

I now restart in safe mode, safe mode is taking a long time to start. After 20 minutes the computer puts out one long beep that does not stop, after about 30 second I hit reset, the hard drive flashes once, no beeps, no video, dead, repeated tries it does not get better.

I disconnected the floppy and DVD, removed the modem, tried one memory stick at a time, and had the same problem. With the two memory sticks removed the computer beeps on start-up, but with the video card removed it would not beep.

I had a spare brand new motherboard and I installed it, and every thing is the same except I get no beeps when there is no memory installed.

I have a spare power supply that I was going to try tonight.

I measured The PS voltages at 12.09 and 4.96V. Disconnected the SATA cables from the drives with both motherboards
and still no video or beeps.

Thanks for reading my long post, and for any suggestions for getting my system back working as replacement at this time is not an option, I was layed off 3yrs ago.

cleaned CPU and cooler and added new AS5. Did not test outside of case I will try that later tonight with the original motherboard and other power supply.
Also CD ejects when the eject button is pushed, no lights on keyboard, light under mouse is on.
I'm still wondering why I did not get any beep codes with the first motherboard with the video card removed but I did with the RAM removed, And no beeps at all with the new motherboard?

Now i am confused, I put the original motherboard back in (the one that beeped when I removed the memory), no post. I removed one memory stick and it booted! I went in and reset all the BIOS values, rebooted and it still worked. Rebooted and let it go through disk check ( still have some FAT32), no problem.

I then foolishly tried to recreate the problem, I put the memory stick back in and of course no boot, no beeps. I then took the memory stick back out and rebooted,
no boot, no beeps, back to square one.

I guess the next thing to do is swap the power supply.
Swapped power supply, no change.

Well CPU's don't get better, RAM doesn't get better so I think that I have a good CPU and at least 1 good stick of RAM. My brand new motherboard that I bought 5 years ago but never tested I think is bad because it will not give beep codes with the RAM removed. And I believe that the original motherboard is dying, dead, or just intermittent.

Off to look for socket 775 motherboards DDR2-800 with a IDE cd drive that can be overclocked well.

Any other suggestions?

More about : desktop troubleshooting

April 20, 2012 6:19:53 PM

System specs: E6600 3.4 GHZ, ASUS P5W DH Deluxe, 2GB Gskill F2-6400-CL4D, HD5670, 2X 250GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.10, WD 6400AAKS, Xclio Greatpower 550wATX, Sycthe Infinity, Samsung 18X DVD R/W, Lian Li PC-61 USB
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April 21, 2012 1:55:23 AM

Work systematically through our standard checklist and troubleshooting thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261145-31-read-postin...
I mean work through, not just read over it. We spent a lot of time on this. It should find most of the problems.

If not, continue.

The following is an expansion of my troubleshooting tips in the breadboarding link in the "Cannot boot" thread.

I have tested the following beep patterns on Gigabyte, eVGA, and ECS motherboards. Other BIOS' may be different, but they all use a single short beep for a successful POST.

Breadboard - that will help isolate any kind of case problem you might have.
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/262730-31-breadboardi...
If the system POST's here, you have a case shorting problem.

Breadboard with just motherboard, CPU & HSF, case speaker, and PSU.

Make sure you plug the CPU power cable in. The system will not boot without it.

I always breadboard a new build. It takes only a few minutes, and you know you are putting good parts in the case once you are finished.

You can turn on the PC by momentarily shorting the two pins that the case power switch goes to. You should hear a series of long, single beeps indicating memory problems. Silence indicates a problem with (in most likely order) the PSU, motherboard, or CPU. Remember, at this time, you do not have a graphics card installed so the load on your PSU will be reduced.

If no beeps:

Check for line power at the PSU input. Extension cords, power strips, and power cords do fail.

If you have power and no beeps, suspect components in likely order are PSU, motherboard, and CPU.

Running fans and drives and motherboard LED's do not necessarily indicate a good PSU. In the absence of a single short beep, they also do not indicate that the system is booting.

At this point, you can sort of check the PSU. Try to borrow a known good PSU of around 550 - 600 watts. That will power just about any system with a single GPU. If you cannot do that, use a DMM to measure the voltages. Measure between the colored wires and either chassis ground or the black wires. Yellow wires should be 12 volts. Red wires: +5 volts, orange wires: +3.3 volts, blue wire : -12 volts, violet wire: 5 volts always on. Tolerances are +/- 5% except for the -12 volts which is +/- 10%.

The green wire will alway have 5 volts on it. When you press the power switch, the voltage should drop to 0 volts.

The gray wire is really important. It should go from 0 to +5 volts when you turn the PSU on with the case switch. CPU needs this signal to boot.

You can turn on the PSU by completely disconnecting the PSU and using a paperclip or jumper wire to short the green wire to one of the neighboring black wires.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FWXgQSokF4&feature=yout...

A way that might be easier is to use the main power plug. Working from the back of the plug where the wires come out, use a bare paperclip to short between the green wire and one of the neighboring black wires. That will do the same thing with an installed PSU. It is also an easy way to bypass a questionable case power switch.

This checks the PSU under no load conditions, so it is not completely reliable. But if it can not pass this, it is dead. Then repeat the checks with the PSU plugged into the computer to put a load on the PSU.

If the system beeps:
If it looks like the PSU is good, install a memory stick. Boot. Beep pattern should change to one long and several short beeps indicating a missing graphics card. If you get this with motherboard graphics, your motherboard is bad.

Silence, long single beeps, or series of short beeps indicate a problem with the memory. If you get short beeps verify that the memory is in the appropriate motherboard slots.

Insert the video card and connect any necessary PCIe power connectors. Boot. At this point, the system should POST successfully (a single short beep). Notice that you do not need keyboard, mouse, monitor, or drives to successfully POST.
At this point, if the system doesn't work, it's either the video card or an inadequate PSU. Or rarely - the motherboard's PCIe interface.

Now start connecting the rest of the devices starting with the monitor, then keyboard and mouse, then the rest of the devices, testing after each step. It's possible that you can pass the POST with a defective video card. The POST routines can only check the video interface. It cannot check the internal parts of the video card. In this case, you will POST successfully (single short beep). But your monitor will display a "missing signal" message.

In that case, the first thing you do is to test the monitor and data cable with another system to make sure it works. If the monitor works, the video card is bad. If you have motherboard graphics, again, the motherboard is bad.


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April 21, 2012 7:27:58 AM

1) I breadboarded the system with motherboard#1, cpu, heat sink, heatsink fan, case speaker and power supply only, no video card.
Power subbly voltages 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V Beeps - one long, two short repeating.CPU fan running.

2) Memory stick#1 in memory slot A1, motherboard#1, cpu, heat sink, heatsink fan, case speaker and power supply only, no video card.
Power subbly voltages 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V Beeps - none.

3) Memory stick#2 in memory slot A1, motherboard#1, cpu, heat sink, heatsink fan, case speaker and power supply only, no video card.
Power subbly voltages 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V Beeps - none.

4) Memory stick#1 in memory slot A2, motherboard#1, cpu, heat sink, heatsink fan, case speaker and power supply only, no video card.
Power subbly voltages 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V Beeps - none.

5) Memory stick#2 in memory slot A2, motherboard#1, cpu, heat sink, heatsink fan, case speaker and power supply only, no video card.
Power subbly voltages 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V Beeps - none.

6) I breadboarded the system with motherboard#2, cpu, heat sink, heatsink fan, case speaker and power supply only, no video card.
Power subbly voltages 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V Beeps - none.

7) Power subbly voltages with video card installed 3.36, 5.12, 12.14V


Does ths mean that motherboard#2 is bad and that both memory sticks are bad or that I might have 2 bad motherboards?

I find it odd that 2 nights ago when I removed one memory stick that I had the system up and running for over an hour
before I replaced the stick and now can not get it to work again by removing that stick.
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