Computer won't boot up (don't see the BIOS)

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CMax

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Joined
Feb 10, 2009
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2
Hello everybody, cheers for a nice tech support site!
This is my first posting, certainly not the last one. Hope I can help with my own experience if I can.

I'm having a "little" problem. When I turn the computer on, I can hear the power supply run but the hard drive doesn't seem to launch. I don't even see the BIOS coming on the screen. So it stays there. Like if it was spinning on its own wheels.

I remember having this in another PC, I changed the power supply and everything worked fine. Now in this PC, I have tried the following:

1. changed power supply from the original Antec 300W to a MIOS 500W. It worked, but then it stalled. Every time I swaped the PSU the PC would boot, but now it's not working anymore, with either PSU.

2. I took out a RAM memory stick which I thought was causing conflict (it was un-branded. The two others are Kingstons).

3. I removed all the extra PCI card I've been adding recently: FaxModem card, firewire card, and even the second HDD.

4. I have even tried to re-install XP on my main HDD, nothing. I have connected another HDD, which is empty, as a master drive to make a fresh installation of XP. The CD wouldn't even launch, but I could hear the cd drive working though.

5. I have checked under the CPU socket, all pins are fine, nothing is bent.

what else... think that's it. I don't know what else to try.... I'm hoping this is not mobo related, if it is then the computer is fried, I'm an amateur, not an expert and I don't think I can fiddle around with the mobo.

Here is my system:
CPU: AMD Athlon XP 1800+ 1.54GHz
Chipset VIA KT 400 Triton
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-7VAX socket A (462)
RAM: Kingston 1Gb+512Mb. I had a third stick, no brand, 256Mb.
Graphics by Nvidia 5200 I think (sometimes it gives me the BSOD: nv4_disp

I bought this PC exactly 6 years ago (I know I know).

A year ago I changed the heatsink fan. I also REMOVED the small chipset fan cause it was noisy as hell. Never replaced it but the PC has been fine for over a year...

Don't know what else to give you as info.
Thanks for the help. I know I can do this myself!

CMax
 
Joined
Aug 11, 2002
Messages
1,824
I would try replacing the video card.

A system that old probably has an AGP slot for video. Maybe a friend has an old video card lying around you could try.

Make sure the pins on the video cable are ok too.
 

CMax

Thread Starter
Joined
Feb 10, 2009
Messages
2
Hi JS, thanks for the suggestion... Yes, the video card is on a AGP slot
and it's been acting up lately (like the BSOD I mentioned, although not very frequently so I just let it be). I'll try to get another one.

When you say the video cable, you mean the the monitor cable?

Cheers!
 
Joined
Mar 12, 2002
Messages
5,520
Howdy folks...

CMax...

A year ago I changed the heatsink fan. I also REMOVED the small chipset fan cause it was noisy as hell. Never replaced it but the PC has been fine for over a year...
I'd say the mother board is pretty much toast, there's a reason that fan was put there, it was for keeping the chipset from getting too hot, and now it has been gone for over a year, even if the pc has ran fine for over a year I'd say the damage is done...
 

crjdriver

Moderator
Joined
Jan 2, 2001
Messages
45,193
With that old of a system, I would give the board a very close inspection with a bright light. Look for any leaking, bulging, or discolored capacitors. That board was built during the worst of the bad cap problem. Here is what bad caps look like.
 

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crjdriver

Moderator
Joined
Jan 2, 2001
Messages
45,193
BTW it is generally not a good idea to remove a fan the board maker installed. They put it there for a reason; it needs the extra cooling.
 
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