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PC Switches on but won't boot

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Padmund, Feb 5, 2007.

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  1. Padmund

    Padmund Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Messages:
    35
    HI Folks,

    I am pulling my hair out ! And hopefully someone can help.

    Recently whilst restarting my PC it would not load up whatsoever, and then on the odd occassion when I would try it would turn on fine, but then again when I reboot .. it won't boot again.

    I thought it was a Hard Disk problem as before I was getting the error about a bad sector or system disk error, so I formatted the HD and did a clean install, and this seemed to work fine for a while, but now it has happened again, and it will not boot up no matter how many times I try.

    I went out and bout a new Hard Drive today thinking that would fix it.. but no :(

    Its 2 years old, spec below. Bascially I turn on the computer, and the power " flash " will appear on screen, and the fan starts.. and thats it.. it won't check the CD or floppy drives, I can hear power going to the Hard Drive but thats it. Nothing else happens.

    The fan stays on, rather than powering itself low again like normal when the PC is turned on ( hope that makes sense ! )

    Now I am starting to think it could be my motherboard ? But I have no idea ?

    I have also tried taking the fan off and back on, and also moving the RAM incase it became loose but all without any success. And nope.. cant get into BIOS either :( and there are no beep or on screen error messages.

    Im really hoping someone can help me as it's SOOOO fustrating :(

    Many thanks

    Paddy

    Computer Spec:

    Your computer uses a Phoenix-Award BIOS
    CPU AMD Athlon™ 64 processor 3400+
    Memory 512 MB DDR RAM - PC3200
    Motherboard ECS 760-M Rev:1.1A motherboard
    Hard Drive 200 GB Maxtor® Maxtor 6B200P0
    CD / DVD Drive Lite-On DVDRW SHOW-1633S
    Floppy Drive Integrated 7 in 1 card reader
    Floppy Drive Floppy disk drive
    Sound Card Realtek AC'97 audio
    Video / Graphics Card SIS Mirage™2 integrated graphics
    Speakers Advent SP-120N
    Modem SmartLink 56K V.92 PCI modem
    Network Card Realtek 8139 / 810x (Onboard)
    Disassembly Jupiter chassis
    Ports Advent T9002 ports information
    Mouse Advent PS/2 mouse
     
  2. jackdw

    jackdw

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2005
    Messages:
    1,729
    I've been having a few boot-up issues with my PC. Custom build. It will just long beep followed by two short beeps and do nothing.
    Same symptoms as yours in that everything powers up but thats all it does do.

    I fix it by removing the battery for an hour or so, give that a go.
     
  3. telegramsam

    telegramsam

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Messages:
    1,085
    Time for an out of case build.

    Take everything out of the case.. Set the MOBO down on a non conductive surface. Connect one stick of (hopefully) known good RAM, video card (unless you have onboard), mouse, printer, connect a monitor.

    Jump the switch connectors to turn it on. IF the core components are good, you should get a post beep and display up to where it looks for an OS.

    If you get nothing here, then one of these components is no good. This is a good way to tell if your hard drive is the problem, or a bad connection, etc.

    Try it and see if you get a display, and then you can move to the next step.
     
  4. telegramsam

    telegramsam

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Messages:
    1,085
    AHHH
    Duh

    NOT a printer--a KEYBOARD. Sorry!!

    :eek:
     
  5. kilowatt1

    kilowatt1

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2001
    Messages:
    2,578
    :eek: Sounds like the power supply could be on the way out. Another thing could be swollen capacitors on the mobo.
     
  6. thechanmane

    thechanmane

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    43
    Your problems are most likely being caused by a faulty power supply or motherboard, just as kilowatt suggested. If you have a spare or extra power supply that has worked in the past, give it try and see if you can get your computer to POST. Follow the steps suggested by telegramsam and only connect the essentials (1 RAM, video, 1 HDD, monitor, mouse and keyboard), you don't necessarily have to do this outside the case this time. Obviously, if it posts or does anything different, the problem is most likely your power supply. If nothing new happens or if it completely fails to POST, you most likely have a faulty motherboard that will need to be replaced (assuming you RAM and video are known to be good :)). Reply back and give us an update, we should be able to give you a solution fairly soon!
     
  7. telegramsam

    telegramsam

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Messages:
    1,085
    And make sure it's KEYBOARD, not printer...:D :D
     
  8. Padmund

    Padmund Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Messages:
    35
    You wont believe this... after me taking EVERYTHING apart and pulling even more hair being lost... I simply unplug my printer.. and hey presto it worked !!

    I then had to take time to format my new HD and set it up .. as my old Hard Drive is erm ... no longer usable..... ** looks guilty ***

    My printer has the memory card reader in it and from what I gather it is this that causes the problems, as I know if i have my external HD connected to the PC it wont boot either. So usually i just connected it when booted, which I dont mind !

    I feel soooo sillY !
     
  9. thechanmane

    thechanmane

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    43
    That's good that everything seems to have worked out. If you don't like the hassle of unplugging and replugging devices during startup, you can modify your boot preferences in the BIOS to ignore USB devices. This would prevent the BIOS from looking at those devices as boot sources and allow you to boot without the inconvenience of unplugging devices. Just a thought, but if your interested, reply back, and any one of us could give you more information about the process. Once again, I'm glad it's all working again for you. That's just a reminder of why it's so important to test only the essential components and then work up, slowing adding more components as things continue to work.
     
  10. Padmund

    Padmund Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2005
    Messages:
    35
    Thanks mate :)

    So theoretically could I use a external USB drive to boot if it was formatted and had ex installed or had the boot files on it ? or is that silly ?

    Paddy
     
  11. telegramsam

    telegramsam

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2006
    Messages:
    1,085
    You could, but do you really want to go down that road? I'd suggest just formatting your disc and installing the OS on it. Your computer might have been trying to boot from that USB memory card..??

    If you run into a USB problem, you're going to end up doing this again.

    Good job finding and fixing the problem though! Glad it worked out for you.
     
  12. thechanmane

    thechanmane

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2007
    Messages:
    43
    telegramsam is correct about just using your internal hard disk. It sounds like a fun idea to boot from a USB, and it can be an excellent technique when used for recovering an unbootable computer, but it is a very unrewarding task to try and run an operating system from a USB device. Your transfer rates will gradually decline over time, and you will drastically decrease the overall lifetime of your devices (especially if you use flash memory). You can always try it if you want, you don't have much to lose (especially if you have a spare USB memory device) and it can be a useful technique to use at times. As with most things on a computer, the more you know and have experimented with, the better!
     
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