Dell XPS 720 won't boot

My Dell XPS 720 will not boot. Upon startup LED lights 2, 3, and 4 light up and stay on. The XPS 720 will not get past the initial Dell splash screen. It does not appear to POST. F2 key can not make the computer into System Setup. I am using USB keyboard and mouse. XPS has 2 dual video cards, only 1 port works the display. Should all devices be removed to see if the machine will POST properly.
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  1. Yes to disconnecting all optical and hardrives. If the system still hangs at the post screen, start removing ram sticks, testing each one individually. If all the ram sticks display the same hang issue at the post screen, then you may want to start over, since your board is probably a btx format, which is no longer available unless you find one used on ebay. Good luck.
  2. If lights 2,3,4 are lit - A possible USB failure has occurred - Reinstall all USB devices and check all cable connections.
    This is from look for "Diagnostic Lights" section

    You need to find original PS2 keyboard and mouse and use it to boot and fix the issues, I actually seen this on other Dell models.
  3. I tried removing all SATA ROM drives and hard drive, but XPS still would not POST. Though I did not have either a PS2 mouse or keyboard, I did have PS2/USB converters. I plug my USB mouse and keyboard into the converters and I changed out the CR2032 CMOS battery. The machine partially POSTed with the following:

    keyboard failure
    Performing automatic IDE configuration.....
    Drive 0: disk drive
    Drive 1: CD-ROM drive
    Drive 2: CD-ROM drive
    Floppy diskette seek failure
    Time-of-day not set - please run SETUP program
    Invalid configuration information - please run SETUP program
    Alert! System battery voltage is low
    Strike the F1 key to continue, F2 to run the setup utility

    The only CR2032 battery that I had on hand was old (I'll get one from Amazon and install it). When I press both the F1 and F2 keys the computer would not go forward nor would it go into SETUP. Would using straight PS2 mouse and keyboard give better results now that I know it can, indeed, POST (at least partially)? Please advise. Thanks to everyone for their individual inputs.
  4. I forgot to mention that the ROM BIOS is Phoenix version 1.10.A04
  5. Change CMOS battery first, then see. Do your best to locate PS2 keyboard at least. Disconnect all devices except keyboard, mouse and boot hard drive , well and monitor. Mostly it is about external cabling.
  6. One more thing, when you changing battery, prior to removing battery, unplug all cables, press and hold power button for at least 20 seconds, next remember position of the battery, remove it, press and hold power button again, leave motherboard without battery overnight and place battery in the morning - this way you clear CMOS of all errors.
  7. Sorry for the long delay since the last posting. After installing a new CMOS battery and plugging in PS2 mouse and keyboard, the XPS 720 managed to boot. I installed Windows 7 Pro 64 bit and found that all but 3 device drivers were installed: Multimedia, Network wireless, and USB device. I believe that these devices are due to installed PCI cards which I plan to pull out before going to the manufacturer websites. The unknown USB device bothers me because there is no discernable device driver under the Hardware ID. What a BIOS update solve the USB problem?
  8. A bios update probably won't fix a missing driver. You may have to enter the system id number to access drivers on the dell website. It's probably a minor device item. I only had one windows 7 driver fail to load on my asus board, but it was the lan driver, so I had to scramble to find it without the motherboard cd. And some boards have a separate driver for usb.
  9. Ok, the beginning looks promising, I will post links to drivers soon and some other things as well.
  10. First of all, last OS for your XPS was Vista, so I will provide Vista 64 bit drivers.
    Dell Wireless,
    Broadcom 57XX Gigabit Integrated Controller,
    Those above you must have, next, Multimedia and USB device, those 2 could be unknown devices. Question. Did you upgraded your XPS by adding any PCI cards after purchase? If yes, do you know their models, and do you still have installation discs? If no, let proceed to the next section.

    How to Find Unknown Device Drivers.

    Every device connected to your computer uses a driver to connect and communicate with the computer. When a device's driver is not properly installed, the Windows operating system (OS) lists the attached hardware as an unknown device. This means the device is not recognized and cannot communicate properly with the Windows OS. To solve the problem, you need to identify the unknown device and find the proper device drivers. This task is simple and can be completed manually. Windows Update can also automatically locate unknown device drivers in some cases.

    Manually Locate Unknown Device Drivers

    1. Open the “Start” menu and click “Run” to launch the “Run” dialog box. Select “Run” from the “Accessories” folder if you are running Windows Vista or Windows 7.
    2. Type “devmgmt.msc” into the Run dialog box and click “OK” to launch the Windows Device Manager. The device manager provides a listing of devices connected to your computer.
    3. Right-click the “Unknown Device” and select “Properties” to view the properties of the unknown device. Open the “Details” tab in the properties window.
    4. Select the “Device Instance ID” from the drop-down menu in the “Details” tab. Locate the four-character codes after the “VEN” and “DEV” portions of the device's instance path. Copy both identification numbers and close the properties window.
    5. Open your Internet browser and go to the PCI database . Use the site search function to identify the unknown device's manufacturer by typing the four-digit code that followed "VEN" from Step 4 into the "Vendor Search" box. In some cases, the PCI database will provide links to the manufacturer's website. Typing the four-digit number that followed "DEV" from Step 4 into the "Device Search" box will bring up a list of possible device names.
    6. Locate and download the device drivers from the manufacturer's website. Most device manufacturers provide updated drivers for free from the device's website. Install the correct drivers to correct the “Unknown Device” problem.

    Use Windows Update to Locate Unknown Device Drivers

    7. Click the Windows “Start” menu and select “Windows Update” from the menu. Click “Check For Updates” to allow Windows Update to connect to the Internet and search for updated software for your computer.
    8. Click “View Available Updates” to review the updates located for your computer. These will include updates for your OS and drivers for hardware attached to your computer. Locate driver updates for devices on your system.
    9. Click the updates for devices on your system and choose to install the selected updates. In most cases, this will resolve your problem with an “Unknown Device.”

    You can actually run those 2 methods prior to installation of those 2 drivers I mentioned, since Broadcom might have Win7 drivers.

    Report back.

    P.S. Remember, try to keep at least PS2 keyboard, since this is native connection and it doesn't require any USB drivers, only generic Windows driver.

    So far so good.
  11. Before you forwarded your last comments, I did a Windows Update which resolved the wireless Network device driver. At this point, I had the Multimedia and USB device drivers to resolve. I will do as you suggest and report back. I feel the Multimedia device drivers has to do with a Creative Labs sound card model SB0460. I saw that there were allegedly Windows 8 drivers but no real Windows 7 64 bit drivers. I will need to check further with the info you provided to see what the correct device driver is.
  12. Creative drivers for you

    There are some issues reported with your model and Win7, hopefully you would not experience them.
  13. Finally got the Multimedia Audio Controller problem resolved by downloading and tweaking the Windows 8 driver on the Creative Labs website. Also found one of the USB ports were broken causing the USB Unknown Device error in Device Manager. So, at this point all is well and the XPS 720 is fixed and fully operational. Thanks to everyone for their invaluable assistance and recommendations.
  14. Anonymous said:
    Finally got the Multimedia Audio Controller problem resolved by downloading and tweaking the Windows 8 driver on the Creative Labs website. Also found one of the USB ports were broken causing the USB Unknown Device error in Device Manager. So, at this point all is well and the XPS 720 is fixed and fully operational. Thanks to everyone for their invaluable assistance and recommendations.

    If you have the Media Card Reader it is a USB device also. Try disconnecting it if your problems persist. Good Luck :)
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