Dimension 4400 - 3 long beeps at startup?

Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

Hi all,

My reliable 3 year old Dimension 4400 has developed its first substantial
problem. When powered up it gives a system error of 3 long beeps. I looked
the code up on Dell's website and found out it means the BIOS memory test
failed. It worked perfectly until we had a very brief power outage that
lasted about 2 seconds. The system is on a high quality surge protector, so
I don't think any damage occurred that way. I'm thinking the BIOS became
corrupted or something via improper shutdown due to the outage. Any ideas on
a fix are highly appreciated. The computer has served me well and I want to
get another year or two out of it if possible. Thanks in advance for any
leads.

John
4 answers Last reply
More about dimension 4400 long beeps startup
  1. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    "John H." wrote:
    >
    > Hi all,
    >
    > My reliable 3 year old Dimension 4400 has developed its first substantial
    > problem. When powered up it gives a system error of 3 long beeps. I looked
    > the code up on Dell's website and found out it means the BIOS memory test
    > failed. It worked perfectly until we had a very brief power outage that
    > lasted about 2 seconds. The system is on a high quality surge protector, so
    > I don't think any damage occurred that way. I'm thinking the BIOS became
    > corrupted or something via improper shutdown due to the outage. Any ideas on
    > a fix are highly appreciated. The computer has served me well and I want to
    > get another year or two out of it if possible. Thanks in advance for any
    > leads.

    A surge protector does just that... Protects against surges, i.e., higher
    than normal voltages. It does nothing for "brownouts," where voltage is
    reduced below its normal level, but not entirely eliminated ("blackouts").

    Brownouts are a great way to fry equipment.

    Notan
  2. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    Reflash the BIOS.

    "John H." <jjohns@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:112fpt43k7g8g43@corp.supernews.com...
    > Hi all,
    >
    > My reliable 3 year old Dimension 4400 has developed its first substantial
    > problem. When powered up it gives a system error of 3 long beeps. I looked
    > the code up on Dell's website and found out it means the BIOS memory test
    > failed. It worked perfectly until we had a very brief power outage that
    > lasted about 2 seconds. The system is on a high quality surge protector,
    > so
    > I don't think any damage occurred that way. I'm thinking the BIOS became
    > corrupted or something via improper shutdown due to the outage. Any ideas
    > on
    > a fix are highly appreciated. The computer has served me well and I want
    > to
    > get another year or two out of it if possible. Thanks in advance for any
    > leads.
    >
    > John
    >
    >
  3. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    Open up the chassis, remove the DDR memory modules, clean out the dust bunnies
    thoroughly with compressed air, and reseat the memory modules one at a time,
    attempting to power on the system with each added module. Always unplug the
    computer from the wall current when adding or removing hardware.

    The three beeps are a fatal POST error and the system will not boot, right?
    Then there is no way to reflash a BIOS unless the system is bootable.

    .... Ben Myers

    On Thu, 3 Mar 2005 22:44:19 -0600, "John H." <jjohns@hotmail.com> wrote:

    >Hi all,
    >
    >My reliable 3 year old Dimension 4400 has developed its first substantial
    >problem. When powered up it gives a system error of 3 long beeps. I looked
    >the code up on Dell's website and found out it means the BIOS memory test
    >failed. It worked perfectly until we had a very brief power outage that
    >lasted about 2 seconds. The system is on a high quality surge protector, so
    >I don't think any damage occurred that way. I'm thinking the BIOS became
    >corrupted or something via improper shutdown due to the outage. Any ideas on
    >a fix are highly appreciated. The computer has served me well and I want to
    >get another year or two out of it if possible. Thanks in advance for any
    >leads.
    >
    >John
    >
    >
  4. Archived from groups: alt.sys.pc-clone.dell (More info?)

    Thanks to all of you for the responses. After swapping out the memory
    tonight, it really was a memory test failure and one of the DIMMs went bad,
    so it's not a corrupted BIOS due to power outage as I thought. The Dimension
    4400 is working flawlessly with the remaining good DIMM, so looks like no
    new computer or service call is needed. Thanks again.

    John

    "John H." <jjohns@hotmail.com> wrote in message
    news:112fpt43k7g8g43@corp.supernews.com...
    > Hi all,
    >
    > My reliable 3 year old Dimension 4400 has developed its first substantial
    > problem. When powered up it gives a system error of 3 long beeps.
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