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Help me to determine where is the problem..=)

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September 23, 2004 4:16:23 PM

Hi everyone..
sorry for posting it here, but since i don't know where the problem is, i guess i'll post it here

I built a pc for a friend longtime ago, spec are:
Intel Celeron Tualatin 1.3GHz
2x128 of PC133
Abit BF6, i440BX chipset
GFfx5200
SB Live!

The system has been running rock and solid, but yesterday he called me to ask for help, I take a look at it

The problem is quite "simple", it freezes randomly, sometimes in BIOS menu, sometimes in the Windows loading screen, but most of the time, it won't even go through loading Windows process and it freezes

I've tried:
Reset BIOS
Change CPU
Unplug every IDE drives
Change Video card
Unplug RAM, boot with any one of them

the computer still freezes in about 20secs..and it won't reboot with RESET, I have to turn the computer off and then boot again
Right now I have no idea what's the problem

Could be it a dying PSU? Mobo? Any suggestions?
Thanks in advanced for any input..I'm going to school now, cya later! :lol: 

More about : determine problem

September 23, 2004 4:35:24 PM

i'd guess its the mobo. are u sure you're using 440bx because it really doesn't support that cpu.
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September 23, 2004 7:18:34 PM

Any bulging capacitors?

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September 23, 2004 9:56:42 PM

Try finding a new bios chip for the motherboard. Could be just bios is forgeting what to do midway through it. But I would be much simpilar to get a new motherboard..

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a b à CPUs
September 24, 2004 2:18:04 AM

You're an idiot, the BX perfectly supports the Tualatin even though it wasn't designed to. Thousands of hours of testing have proven it.

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a b à CPUs
September 24, 2004 2:20:15 AM

It's most likely failing capacitors on the motherboard. It could be other things such as power as well. First thing I'd do is check the capacitors for bulging tops (should be flat) or leaking bottoms as suggested.

If you'd like to rule out a damaged RAM module, you can try testing those one at a time.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
September 24, 2004 3:40:10 AM

Heat? Has he ever cleaned out or dusted out the inside of the case? I'd guess heat or bad memory.

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September 24, 2004 12:07:45 PM

Power supply????
September 24, 2004 1:04:32 PM

Thanks for everyone's quick response
but sorry..I'm a newbie to this domaine..how do I identify those bad capacitors? I've take a look at the capacitors, I found out that the top of the most of the capacitors are ..flat as you say? and some of them are kinda having a "pyramide" on it, so i guess that's bulging tops right?

if that's the case, what can I do?
September 24, 2004 1:05:25 PM

440bx supports for Tualatin through Adapter..I used the upgradeware slot-t for this
September 24, 2004 1:07:45 PM

It can't be heat, it's true that there are some dust inside the case, but it's not that "much" to make system too hot

bad memory? could it be? cuz the 2 sticks of 128 works fine ever since i installed for him, could it be dying?
September 24, 2004 1:08:44 PM

It's not power supply, I've switched an Antec 250W, which is working fine for my Duron 1GHz at home, system still freezes
a b à CPUs
September 24, 2004 3:17:56 PM

Yes, if the top looks like a Pyramid is probably because the capacitors had a certain pattern imprinted on the top before they bulged.

Send me the board and I'll fix it for $30. Or find a junk board with the same capacitor values and replace them yourself, it's fairly easy.

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September 25, 2004 2:46:49 AM

ok..thanks for your help
as I said, i'm a newb in this domaine..so can you give me a simple guideline as how to replace it?
if I won't make it, then i'll ask him whether he'll pay to you to fix it, or he wants sth else
Thanks!
a b à CPUs
September 25, 2004 4:04:38 AM

The capacitor has a stripe for polarity, find another with the same capacitance (the big number) and the same or slightly higher voltage rating. There's a stripe on the thing to show which way it goes, put the new one where the old was. Get out a fairly powerful solder iron so you can heat the solder quickly. What I do is melt the solder on one leg so I can tip the capacitor away from the board on that side. Then I heat the other leg and tip it the other way. So I walk it out. I try to keep the hole filled with solder so I don't have to add any. Then I install the new capacitor in the reverse fashion.

If the holes don't have enough solder, I fill them with more before mounting the new one.

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a b à CPUs
September 25, 2004 4:05:53 AM

BTW, capacitors usually fail in small sets (2-6 at a time depending on the layout of the circuit) so check all of them carefully.

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!