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Motherboard does not start, yet, USB ports function after surge

Last response: in Motherboards
January 22, 2013 5:24:47 AM


I've come across a unique problem:

On Sunday morning, we had a series of power fluctuations due to high winds knocking transformers offline.

Well, as soon as those started hitting, I reached over and turned off the PSU to try to protect the motherboard I have. However, when I turned the PSU back on. I discovered that the motherboard would not restart, yet the USB ports were working as I had a USB powered light hooked to the front (non-integrated) and the USB ports on the back of the computer (integrated).

I replaced the PSU with a backup I had sitting around, hoping that maybe the PSU has been partially fried. However, that proved to not be the problem because the motherboard still had the same symptoms. Attempting a CMOS reset, also was no good

Then, I removed pretty much all the optional components (DVD-RW, a 2 GB stick, nVidia based video card) and, still no reaction from the motherboard, save for the USB ports.

I left it unplugged overnight on Sunday-Monday, and, that did not help, either. Finally, I physocally removed the motherboard from the case and examined every one of those transistors to the best of my ability and none were damaged.

Here's the specs for the computer:

Motherboard: MSI model g31tm-p21
4 GB of DDR2 800 MhZ
Original integrated Audio
nVidia eVGA 640 (2gb)
Socket 775 Pentium D 3.00 GhZ with HT
AMI Bios (V 4.7)

Anyone have any ideas on what to look for?
January 22, 2013 6:10:05 AM

Might as well put this in the solved file already. I decided to take JSC's breadboard advice and the motherboard booted right up...It even groused in POST that the CMOS was reset :D 

Sorry about the trouble, though.