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Computer Turns on and then Off Almost Immediately

Last response: in CPUs
July 11, 2012 4:14:24 AM


My computer is turning on for less than a second or two and then turning off immediately. I've taken a number a number of diagnostic actions (POST card, new PSU, reseating everything except CPU), read a ton of articles, and all of point me in the direction of a failed CPU/motherboard, but I'd appreciate your advice before I blow money on an overhaul.

Things had been working fine for a number of years (built the system from scratch in March of 2007), until I went to boot my computer after having it hibernation mode. I’ve had a few strange things happened coming out of hibernation mode the previous month, such as the ethernet connection not registering properly, but this time, when I went to turn on the computer, it acted like it was booting up for 2-3 seconds, then turned off. Frustrated, I went away on travel for a few weeks, then came back and the computer turned on. When I turned it on that time, I received an error message stating that “Overclocking Failed,” which is strange because I’ve never overclocked this computer. Anyway the thing booted up, worked for a few days, then failed again, and it hasn’t turned on since a few weeks ago. I had not made any hardware or software changes in the previous months that might have led to this.

One note on the overclocking issue, this worried me because I’d say 3-4 years ago (the computer is 5 years old), my stock CPU fan failed. I don’t think any permanent damage was done though; I bought a more advanced heatsink/fan, and it’s been running cool ever since with no issues.

Full Story/Steps Taken to Diagnose & Remedy
When I open my case up, the motherboard light is illuminated, and upon pressing the power button, all the fans (case, CPU) and hard drives spin up for a second (literally) and then shut down. Nothing appears on the monitor. After reading a number of forums, I decided to pick up a new PSU, and the same issue occurs with a new PSU installed. I’ve checked the motherboard extensively for shorts, reset the CMOS using the button on the motherboard, booted with only essential hardware (i.e. RAM), booted with different configurations of RAM, hardware, etc, and the same thing happens every time. With no variation

Frustrated, I picked up a cheap POST card, which wasn’t extremely helpful, since it only powers up so briefly (1-2 seconds). The messages I received go from 00 to FF to d3 (at which point the system conks), which according to the manual are “code copying to specific areas is done. Passing control to INT 19h boot loader next” to “Int 19 Boot Attempt – flasah ROM programming was successful. Next restarting the system BIOS” to “starting memory sizing next.” This seems unhelpful to me, but maybe you’ll disagree. Also, there’s no beep code in this scenario (speaker works fine – beeped loud and clear when I forgot to plug in my GPU power).

Any thoughts? Do motherboards/CPUs tend to fry after 5 years of almost continuous use and/or going in and out of hibernation? I’d love to not redo my system, but it’s kind of looking like that might be my only solution. If I did have to replace the CPU and motherboard, would you suggest upgrading the other components listed below as well? Looking to conserve as many resources as possible…



CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.4G 775
Motherboard: MSI P6N SLI-FI NF650
RAM set 1: 2 @ Kingston KVR667DN5/1G Clock Cycle Time (tCK) CL=5 3ns (min.) / 8ns (max.) 1.8V 1.225 W RAM set 2: 2 @ Kingston KVR667D2N5/1G R
CPU cooler ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 92mm Fluid Dynamic CPU Cooler
Video Card: EVGA 320-P2-N811-AR 8800GTS
Power Supply: originally (PSU SEASONIC|S12-430) currently PSU ANTEC| 900W HCG-900 RTL
Hard Drives: 320G|ST 7K 16M SATA2 ST3320620AS and Western Digital Caviar Blue WD3200AAJS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s
DVD 1: LG 22X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model GH22LS30 LightScribe Support – OEM
DVD 2: LG|GDR-8164BK
Sound Card: HT | OMEGA STRIKER 7.1 Channels PCI Interface Sound Card
Windows 7

a b à CPUs
July 11, 2012 4:18:07 AM

Symptoms point to a power supply failed rather than a cpu/motherboard failure.
July 11, 2012 4:22:08 AM

Please read the whole post. I've already replaced the PSU and I'm still having the same problem.
a b à CPUs
July 11, 2012 4:23:56 AM

Sorry. I must have glanced over that.

I'm stumped because it still doesn't sound like a cpu or motherboard failure. Maybe someone else will have some useful insight.