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Dell XPS Lights are on but nobody's home

Tags:
  • Dell Studio Xps
  • Light
  • Laptops
Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
September 4, 2010 7:49:11 PM

Hello,
I have a Dell XPS 1730. I went to turn it on one day. drives buzz, lights turn on, but screen remains black - no response at all. Then I tried it again another day and it came on. So I reset to factory defaults, when that was done, it did restart and it did not come back on again. Any clues, suggestions, HELP

More about : dell xps lights home

September 5, 2010 3:23:59 AM

Well, list all specs here...

Are you sure inside the case is free from dust?
We need more info here...
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September 5, 2010 8:21:39 AM

Time for systematic troubleshooting.

Work through our standard checklist and troubleshooting thread:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261145-31-read-postin...
I mean work through, not just read over it.

Breadboard - that will help isolate any kind of case problem you might have.
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/262730-31-breadboardi...

Breadboard with just motherboard, CPU & HSF, case speaker, and PSU.

You can turn on the PC by momentarily shorting the two pins that the case power switch goes to.

You should hear a series of long, single beeps indicating memory problems. Silence indicates a problem with (in most likely order) the PSU, motherboard, or CPU. Remember, at this time, you do not have a graphics card installed so the load on your PSU will be reduced.

If no beeps:
At this point, you can sort of check the PSU. Try to borrow a known good PSU. If you cannot do that, use a DMM to measure the voltages. Measure between the colored wires and either chassis ground or the black wires. Yellow wires should be 12 volts. Red wires: +5 volts, orange wires: +3.3 volts, blue wire : -12 volts, violet wire: 5 volts always on. Tolerances are +/- 5% except for the -12 volts which is +/- 10%.

The gray wire is really important. It should go from 0 to +5 volts when you turn the PSU on with the case switch. CPU needs this signal to boot.

You can turn on the PSU by completely disconnecting the PSU and using a paperclip or jumper wire to short the green wire to one of the neighboring black wires.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FWXgQSokF4&feature=yout...

This checks the PSU under no load conditions, so it is not completely reliable. But if it can not pass this, it is dead. Then repeat the checks with the PSU plugged into the computer to put a load on the PSU.

If the system beeps:
If it looks like the PSU is good, install a memory stick. Boot. Beep pattern should change to one long and several short beeps indicating a missing graphics card. Silence or long single beeps indicate a problem with the memory.

Insert the video card and connect any necessary PCIe power connectors. Boot. At this point, the system should POST successfully (a single short beep). Notice that you do not need keyboard, mouse, monitor, or drives to successfully POST.

Now start connecting the rest of the devices starting with the monitor, then keyboard and mouse, then the rest of the devices, testing after each step. It's possible that you can pass the POST with a defective video card. The POST routines can only check the video interface. It cannot check the internal parts of the video card.
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Related resources
September 5, 2010 2:10:30 PM

XPS 1730 is a laptop, no breadboarding going to happen there.
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September 5, 2010 3:53:15 PM

This topic has been moved from the section Graphics & Displays to section Laptops & Notebooks by Mousemonkey
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