Xps 400 power supply issue

Hello,
My mom just asked me to clean out her computer (XPS 400) with dust-off because she claims it was 'getting really hot and smelled like something was burning' and she believed there was a lot of dust in it. I told her that, not being an expert at that stuff, it could be 'dangerous,' but she wanted me to do it anyways so I humored her. I followed (at least what I believe to be) proper technique regarding this stuff (turned the computer off etc). When I took off the side panel, the power supply unit was indeed blazing hot. I let everything cool down for a while, and then proceed to blow all the dust out of the computer. I made sure the dust-off never came out as liquid.

When I went and reconnected the computer, it did not turn on, and instead the power button blinked orange. A quick internet search revealed this to be an issue with the power supply. I'm thinking I must have messed it up - do you all think blowing the dust-off from the back of the power supply out the back panel of the computer could have messed it up (a whole ton of dust did come out). I'm thinking that must have been it. Was that something I should not have done? What specifically might have messed it up?

My question is - how might I be able to fix this/is the only way to do so to buy a new Power Supply - also, if so, how difficult is the install.
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  1. Sounds like you only accelerated the inevitable. That is a pretty old computer. I cannot recall that model specifically, but some of the older Dell computers required a special power supply. A Google search did not reveal anything definitive.

    This video is as good as any about explaining the power supply install.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LtSHYEgAeMo

    In all honesty, I think mom needs a new machine. Any inexpensive off the rack model will do. Even a low end current model will be light years ahead of the Dell. You might even check the Dell, HP, etc. refurb sites for a good deal.

    You can donate the old machine to the Goodwill Electronics Recycling program, or maybe sell on Craigslist to someone who wants it for parts.

    In either case, if the old hard drive has data on it that you need to retrieve, you can remove it. It will likely be an older model IDE drive, and most newer computers will not have such a connection. If it is IDE, an adapter like this will do the job for little cost. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812186054
  2. XPS 400 uses can use a standard ATX power supply.
    I like the Antec EA series, the cables aren't all sleeved, makes management in a Dell case easier.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371034
    Install is not too difficult , you will need to swing the heatsink away to get to some of the cable's, so need to be prepared to clean and reapply TIM ( a good idea considering the machines age )

    Using the forum search box would find you this info.
  3. delluser1 said:
    XPS 400 uses can use a standard ATX power supply.
    I like the Antec EA series, the cables aren't all sleeved, makes management in a Dell case easier.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371034
    Install is not too difficult , you will need to swing the heatsink away to get to some of the cable's, so need to be prepared to clean and reapply TIM ( a good idea considering the machines age )

    Using the forum search box would find you this info.



    Hi :)

    This guy hardly knows what hes doing....do you really think using an acronym Llike TIM is very bright ?

    To the original poster, take it to a local PC SHOP and get them to test it there, as it may or may not be that power supply stopping it starting.

    All the best Brett :)
  4. Brett928S2 said:

    This guy hardly knows what hes doing....do you really think using an acronym Llike TIM is very bright ?

    I love all noobs, and give them all the benefit of the doubt ;)
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