Problems with old computer build

So I was not really sure what category to put this in because there could be a number of things going on but I chose the one that was was the most obvious.
So I had an old network file server (just a computer that was running xp mapped as a network drive) that someone built for us in the past that we used to have our music on. We stopped using it a while ago because we got a new network setup and I was too lazy to reconfigure it. I am now trying to get the old file server working again as a functioning backup computer. I put the mobo with everything on it in a new case and a CD drive that I got from another computer (which uses an IDE connection). I also threw in a 36gb hard drive that I planned to put the OS on (probably ubuntu), and I used the original power supply which is I think like a 240 watt or something (something small). Anyways, when I turn on the computer, it takes like 4 seconds before it starts spinning up. And when it does, here are the things that are going on: I get no video signal, there are 2 LEDS on the mobo that are staying on (green and orange/yellow), there is no change in CPU fan speed, I dont hear any post beep, I am not able to open the CD drive, and an USB that i put in the back does not receive any power (there is no light on the USB). I have tried 2 different power supplies, the original one, and a 330 watt DELL psu. I get the same results from both ones. Let me know what you think the problem could be. Is my PSU too small (probably not due to the old parts), is the computer just completely dead, am I missing a connection? let me know what you think could be the problem.

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  1. dead motherboard? cmos battery dead?
  2. need to figure out what the orange lite is for.
  3. rgd1101 said:
    dead motherboard? cmos battery dead?

    Well a dead motherboard doesn't seem like it would make sense because I did not do anything to it. All I did was move it to another case. (maybe I shorted it on accident? i dont know)

    And correct me if im wrong, but a dead CMOS battery would only make my BIOS forget its settings and stay at default after every restart.

    My thoughts are that too small of a power supply could be the issue, but I am also doubtful towards that because all of the parts are old and do not require as much power as higher end hardware would need (I have a 250wwatt-ish PSU in there right now, seems like more than enough for the components I have in there)

    Let me know what you think.
  4. popatim said:
    need to figure out what the orange lite is for.

    The problem with that is that I dont have instructions or any drivers for any of the hardware because it was built by someone else for us (im guessing he used some of his spare parts, otherwise he would have had some kind of documentation to give us). Anyways, I know that the green light is just like it is on any other motherboard and merely shows that it is running and always stays on when connected to power (at least thats what I believe is the purpose).

    Let me know what you think and if I am wrong on anything I say
  5. On the motherbd there always a manufacturer and model number. it might be difficult to find but its there. From there you can usually find the manual online and then findout what the orange light is for.

    The cd drie not opening has me concerned. With the power off, disconnect the ide cable and then power the unit on and see if it opens. It should. If it doesnt then you have a power supply issue or a dead cd drive.
  6. Ok, no beeps in POST?? I would look for 3 beeps in your case. Check once again mate. And check if ram is inserted properly.
    Post results again. Yeah, do what popatim said once. And it doesn't have any OS on it does it- probably why USB did not work - needs drivers.
    Usually if the fan does not spin, I would check the RAM(Is your buzzer working /inserted properly- coz this happened to me once).
  7. Ok, one more thing and DO THIS first before what I said:

    1. Open Case and remove the RAM
    2. Check if Buzzer is inserted
    3. Power on and just see if the CPU fans run and if you get a 1 short beep continously.
    If you get this, next insert the RAM and do the same(if you get 2 to 4 short beeps, mobo is dead).
  8. I figured out what was wrong. The power supply I was using did not have a plug for the 4 x 4 ATX_CPU (that's what it is labeled as on the Mobo) socket. I don't know what that plug does, but it will not work without it for some reason. What is also weird is that my newer computer build does not have that plug/I guess does not need it. If anyone knows what it is and why some have it and some don't, I would be curious to know.
    Thanks for your help.
  9. Having or not having it is purely mobo dependent. Newer comp increasing have it. It is weird that yours didn't. Mine is a asrock Z77 pro3 and mine has it.
    The reason for it presence it fully to power the mobo to utilize all its comps.
    Otherwise, you would run the mobo and cpu at less than the voltage demanded and mostly , spoil everything you have(INCLUDING YOU CPU).
    Your motherboard is your load(resistance) and it demands more current. So more Voltage is needs(Each rail of atx pin is 12v)
    You can see the great operation voltage difference in mobos and CPU(CPU is mostly 5V).
    But that is why. If it is not present no big deal. Means you can run without the extra 4x12 v.
    It is never wrong to be curious.
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