BIOS,MOBO prob.? or???????????

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MN_N8VTech

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:confused: Im working on a dell,running winxp,p4 processor,512 ram. Its giving errors ive personally never seen before.First it was saying disc read error,operating system not found,and once or twice came up with keyboard failure. Also said failed post and to contact dell. (not under warranty)I tried a different harddrive and it got as far as the progress bar before loading xp,but then froze,and after a few went back to "hit ctrl alt,del" to restart etc.Could this be a problem with the BIOS? and is that replaceable in a dell? or more serious than that?mobo maybe?(ive never replaced BIOS before,so forgive my ignorance)
 

crjdriver

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Have you run a memory tester yet? You may have a problem with the bios, however I would bet that you will find the problem running doc memory. It runs from a floppy that the program makes for you; so there is no need for an os to be installed. Doc memory's site was down; here is a link for memtest86.
 

MN_N8VTech

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Thank you and i will try that.What is "doc" memory? ive never heard of that,is it known as something else?
 

crjdriver

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Doc memory is a memory tester; their site was down so I gave you a link to another memory tester program.
 

MN_N8VTech

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:eek: I havent been on here for awhile,but I downloaded the memtest program,although it wouldnt run at bootup,do I need to do something special to it? The only detailed directions were for linux.
This computer isnt detecting the hardrive at all,It does detect the floppy,and a boot disk works.Also,I was mistaken,it has 256K RAM,1 stick.
What ive tried so far is,a new IDE cable for the harddrive,a different hardrive(then it got to the progress meter,but still didnt boot) changing jumper settings,clearing cmos.
Please help.
 

crjdriver

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Did you create the boot floppy with the program? You run or execute the file you downloaded; it makes the bootable floppy with the memory tester program on it for you. Restart with the disk in the drive and test the memory.
 

MN_N8VTech

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I guess I did that wrong then CRJ,i didnt do it like you said,ill try that in the morning,got the program,but i didnt know i had to run it to make the floppy bootable.And yes Derrick,256k of RAM.
Now to explain the next step/problem Ive run into today. Im beginning to believe they have a few problems,I think the harddrive is bad along with something else and ill tell you why.
Today I put in a harddrive that has windows 98 on it,and that detected all the hardware and booted fine.
After that I removed that drive and put in my own drive with WINXP Pro,with that it booted to the point of the boot menu(start windows normally,safe mode,etc,etc)I tried all options and it wouldnt finish booting with any. All it did was go to where it said,choose f1 to continue or f2 to enter setup,then after hitting f1 it went back to the boot menu.
After installing each HD I entered setup and made sure it found them,which is another question....I could put the HD setting on auto but not detect(it tells me it has a detect setting,but its not available to choose)
And finally(I think) at boot up it beeps twice,it has phoenix BIOS which im not too familiar with,but I checked beep codes,and none explain 2 beeps.
Ill have to wait till morning again to run that memtest properly,but in the meantime does anything here stand out as obvious? or can i tell you guys anything else to help solve it? (im at work for the night,but ill keep checking back here through the night,so i can respond right away)
Thanks
 
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I have to agree with crjdriver. Sounds like bad ram.

Do the memtest86 test - bet it comes up with errors - pointless doing anything else till u check that. Maybe try another stick of ram if u can find one.

And its 256 Megs not K of ram btw ;)

abbyk
 

MN_N8VTech

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oh :)
i knew that :)
thanks,ill run that test,so RAM being bad could cause this?why would some HD's work and not others?
 

crjdriver

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While you are at it, download the hd mgf's utility for checking the drive. It will give the drive a complete check.
 

MN_N8VTech

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I have the memtest running now,it seems like itll be awhile,but one thing I see that doesnt seem right is that the L1 cache is only 8mb.Is that normal? Ill post back with results of the test.
 

MN_N8VTech

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How long do you let the memtest run? its been running for like 5-6 hours now but nothing seems to change,and if thats good enough what do i look for?
 
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