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New build restarts after 1 second unless I clear the CMOS first

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February 19, 2013 4:49:33 PM

Hello, I recently built a new gaming computer using a mix of old and new parts and am having a difficult time getting it to work properly. Here is a description of my problem:

If I power the system on, the lights and fans turn on for about 1 second and then shut off for about 3-5 seconds, doing this over and over again until I unplug the power supply (I have let it restart itself like this for over an hour). HOWEVER, If I remove the CMOS battery and put it back in, then the computer will only do this "restarting ritual" once or twice and from then on it successfully powers up and boots into Windows.

Once booted into Windows I am able to play any game or run any benchmark with great performance and NO ISSUES WHATSOEVER for the entire day. What really confuses me, is that when I power the system down for the night, the restarting issue returns the next morning and will only boot after I have once again cleared the CMOS by removing the battery and putting it back in.

Things to note:

1. I have used 3 different kits of DDR3 ram from 3 different manufacturers, in various slots.

2. I have tried manually setting the ram timings in the BIOS to 9-9-9-24 @ 1.5V which is the memory spec for my ram, for some reason the BIOS automatically put them at 8-8-8-20. The ram is DDR3-1600 but my cpu only supports 1333 so that's what it's running at.

3. I have tried removing the video card and HDD.

4. I don't think this is a PSU or heat issue because like I said before, once booted up the system performs fine. I have run Heaven maxed out several times consecutively, Prime95, played Crysis for hours maxed out, and have not had any throttling or restarts of my system. Also, my power supply was in a previous build about 6 months ago and worked fine then.

5. I have flashed my BIOS to the latest version.



Here are my SPECS:

New items:

Intel Pentium G2020 @ 2.9GHz
AsRock B75m-dgs motherboard (micro atx, socket 1155)
Crucial 2 x 4GB DDR3-1600
XFX Radeon 7870 2GB

Old items:
Rosewill 600w power supply
Seagate 2.5" 5400rpm 500GB laptop drive
Raidmax mid tower case



I am certain that this is a motherboard issue, but I can't figure out if its merely a problem with a BIOS setting or is actually my board being defective.
a b B Homebuilt system
February 19, 2013 10:12:08 PM

Try a new board battery for $3. Most are the round cr2032 "button battery". Also look for an "xmp" setting in the bios for your ram. Enable it. Did you do a fresh installation of windows or use your old one when you changed out the motherboard?
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February 20, 2013 1:48:02 AM

I'll see about getting a new CMOS battery but I would be surprised if it were that because the motherboard is brand new. Also I don't think my windows installation would affect anything because the restarting issue occurs before the computer even has a chance to POST. I'm thinking my ram might not work with my motherboard since its not on the compatibility list but I know those are mostly BS.
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February 20, 2013 1:51:54 AM

FLanighan said:
I'm thinking my ram might not work with my motherboard since its not on the compatibility list but I know those are mostly BS.



I've not found this to be quite an accurate statement. While there are some unsupported RAM sticks that wont show up on compatibility lists, I've run into problems when trying to use "incompatible" RAM
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February 20, 2013 1:52:01 AM

Also,

Consider how many items you see get RMA'd (legitimately) because they were DOA.

CMOS batteries aren't exempt from this either. I would have thought CMOS battery before you mentioned unsupported RAM
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February 20, 2013 11:15:20 AM

usmarine1979 said:
I've not found this to be quite an accurate statement. While there are some unsupported RAM sticks that wont show up on compatibility lists, I've run into problems when trying to use "incompatible" RAM


Would unsupported ram allow my computer to boot right after a CMOS clear but not during a cold boot? I'm typing this from the computer right now, and am having to leave it on 24/7, if I turn it off for even 1 hour then it requires another CMOS clear to boot.

What's strange is that I can do a complete power off and as long as I turn it on within ~5 minutes it powers on normally, but longer than that and power on = CMOS clear required.

What makes me reluctant to get a new battery is I've googled the problem and seen several other people with similar issues get their CMOS batteries replaced and it didn't help. I'll still probably try it but I'm living at college atm and not close to any stores which sell them.
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February 20, 2013 11:37:57 AM

To me it sounds like the battery does not have enough juice to make it past the 5 minute mark you described and therefore you're losing all of your BIOS settings. The CMOS battery going bad could play a part in your problem which might be compounded by in compatible RAM although it is a bit confusing. It seems as though you may have to separate problems such as a bad CMOS batter and in compatible RAM and wild bored maybe able to overcome 1 or the other both compounded could be causing this problem. I understand it's not always easy to get the store but it is certainly where I would start and will probably be the least expensive of your testing options.

Sorry for the possible run on sentences I'm typing this from my phone.
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February 20, 2013 12:50:56 PM

I had a similar issue where my computer would not boot and I had to go through a whole journey just to get it on. Once it was on as long as I didn't fully power it down it worked great. Turns out one of my RAM was faulty. Try turning it on with only one of the RAM chips in. If it still doesn't work try using only the other one. Do a couple of cold boots with each chip. If the issue only happens with one of them then replace it. I ran my computer for 5 months like that only to find it a simple faulty RAM.
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February 20, 2013 4:05:46 PM

hiddenmonk430 said:
I had a similar issue where my computer would not boot and I had to go through a whole journey just to get it on. Once it was on as long as I didn't fully power it down it worked great. Turns out one of my RAM was faulty. Try turning it on with only one of the RAM chips in. If it still doesn't work try using only the other one. Do a couple of cold boots with each chip. If the issue only happens with one of them then replace it. I ran my computer for 5 months like that only to find it a simple faulty RAM.



I doubt its the ram being "faulty", I've tested it with Corsair dominator 2 x 4GB DDR3, Crucial 2 x 1GB DDR3, and Crucial 2 x 4GB DDR3 and all give me the same problem with POST. I've also tried running one in each slot, nothing changes. All 3 of those ram kits aren't on the compatibility list, though.

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February 24, 2013 10:21:13 PM

OKAY this is starting to drive me insane... I went out and bought a new CMOS battery but nothing changes when I put it in. Still the same old problem. I have done everything I can think of, breadboarding, removing video card, HDD, 1 stick of ram, etc. The damn thing WILL NOT POST unless the cmos is cleared.

Initially after swapping the battery I got it booted up and then turned it off for about 40 minutes. I turned it back on again and it worked so I thought the problem was solved... but then I left it off for about 3 hours after that and now when I try to turn it on all it does turn on and off every few seconds (with screen completely blank).

I've been building computers for about 5 years now but am absolutely stumped on this one. Obviously its the motherboard, but WHY is my issue only with getting it to POST on a cold boot? Right now the computer is 100% usable assuming I want to crawl under my desk, open up the case, and clear CMOS every time I turn it on.
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February 24, 2013 10:58:06 PM

Bear w/ me Flanighan, but I am curious,

When you try to boot w/o removing the battery, do you get your motherboard splash screen or no post at all?

I'm curious I seem to remember an issue w/ certain (Mostly Asus, not ASRock) and PSU combinations having a very similar/exact effect.

The other thought that comes to mind, is that for some reason your mobo might be trying to improperly set the voltage/timings automatically on your RAM on initial start up, and clearing the cmos may be what brings it back to proper voltage.

I know you've tried several different RAM sticks, but if I remember you said none of them were on the compatibility list, right? Could you get your hands on one stick that would be to test that theory?

If not the RAM, I'd consider looking that the PSU next. I can't remember what the specifics were back then between the PSU/MB combos causing this issue, but I'll see what I can dig up for you.
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February 24, 2013 11:03:11 PM

Flan, what version of bios did you update to?
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February 24, 2013 11:20:06 PM

If I try to power on the system without removing battery, nothing shows up on screen. Completely black. The lights and fans turn for about .75 seconds and then turn off for 3-4 seconds, repeating over and over again until power is cut. If I remove the battery, the system powers up normally and I am able to boot into Windows. I've tried manually setting the ram voltage to 1.5v and timings to the rated spec of 9-9-9-24 but that doesn't help.

I think it might be somewhat related to date/time settings but that's pretty much a random guess. I don't know how the PSU could be at fault, I agree that restarting afer .75 seconds sounds like a PSU thing but it seems strange how a CMOS reset would affect that.

Google led me to another forum where a person was having this issue (with an ASUS board) and replaced every single component including cpu and psu in addition to a replacement mobo of the same model and nothing changed for him. The only way he got it fixed was by buying a completely different brand of motherboard.

I'm not sure if I should RMA my board or not, it was only $55 and I would have to pay to ship it across the U.S. and wait weeks to get a replacement... I might as well go to Microcenter and buy a Gigabyte board or something. Still makes me angry that I might have to pay $50-60 twice to get a $50-60 board when I could have bought a $120 board and have it work the first time... I intended this computer to be a cheap easy build for my dorm so I wouldn't be *completely* deprived of high end gaming in college (because I don't want to bring my primary setup).
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February 24, 2013 11:20:59 PM

usmarine1979 said:
Flan, what version of bios did you update to?


The latest version for my motherboard, which is 1.20 (released in Dec. 2012).
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