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Old 01-06-2005, 03:40 AM   #1 (permalink)
Junior Techie
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 45
Default Computer won't boot properly

Hi all.. bit of a strange problem here so please bear with me...

I have a custom built desktop which I've been using without any problems for about 2 months. A few days back, the signal to the monitor failed. My first thought was that the gfx card had become unseated but I then noticed that the system wasn't booting properly.

It appears to turns on okay when I press the power button and there seems to be some HDD and CD activity for a brief second, then nothing. I don't hear the usual single short beep confirming that the system is loading properly. My first thought was to try and boot from a recovery disk but with the exception of the floppy drive light coming on for a brief second on startup - there's no activity there. (It always worked okay before). I also tried clearing the CMOS by shorting the appropriate jumpers on the mobo (and removing the cmos battery) but that has made no difference.

More worryingly, I've now noticed that shortly after startup (say 30 seconds later) the system powers itself down. I hear the fans in the PSU spring into life, then they seem to get progressively slower until it gets to a point where the system shuts itself down.

I haven't yet tried swapping the PSU out with another as I don't have a spare to hand. The last thing I did before the system started having problems was to plug a USB stick into the front USB port. In hindsight, I didn't earth it first (I usually touch the metal connector on the side of the case quickly to release any built up static) so I thought I may have caused damage to the south bridge but I can't see any physical on the mobo anywhere. In any event, the front USB port looks to be grounded properly with the case anyway. I've also swapped the memory out with other memory known to be working and there's no difference.

So in short, I'm stuck with a system that doesn't boot. Neither will it boot from either a CD or floppy, and which shuts itself down after 30 seconds regardless. I get no display on the
monitor so I'm kind of limited with what I can do.

If anyone knows what could have possibly caused this problem I'd be really grateful for any pointers. I'm kind of lost on this one and without the usual spares to hand (gave my brother my 2nd pc for xmas! great timing) I'm hesitant to splash money on replacement parts unless there's a chance they could make the system work.

I guess as with any hardware related problems that the PC spec would help:

Intel P4 550 3.4Ghz (socket 775)
Gigabyte GA-8GPNXP Duo Mobo (PCI-e)
Asus Extreme AX 800XT (obviously PCI-e also)
1gb RAM (2x512)
XP Pro SP2
480W Thermaltake Xaser Silent Purepower PSU
Sony DRU510a DVD/RW

If any other info would be useful, please let me know

Thanks in advance for any help

jasedog is offline  
Old 01-06-2005, 04:40 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 14,559

take out all hardware except the essential, and if it works, try putting back the hardware one by one testing as you go

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Old 01-06-2005, 05:14 AM   #3 (permalink)
Chillin Techie
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 11,861

it look like you need a new power supply. I fix a friend's computer with the same symptoms. it was a bad PSU
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Old 01-06-2005, 06:31 AM   #4 (permalink)
Junior Techie
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 45

Thanks both, I'll look into those suggestions
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Old 01-11-2005, 06:47 AM   #5 (permalink)
Junior Techie
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 45

Thanks again for the suggestions. For the record, after trying Apokalipse's suggestion I still had the same problem with only the core (essential) components. I replaced each one in turn only to find it was the mobo that was causing the prob.

Anyway, cheers again.
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Old 01-11-2005, 10:33 AM   #6 (permalink)
Junior Techie
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 69

Yup I had the same exact problem with an MSI board but this was right after install. I wish i knew exactly what part of the MB failed because it seems to be a big issue with MBs these days all failing in the same manner.

MB - Abit IS7-E2G; CPU - P4 3.0e Prescott now at 3.5 with Cooler Master HYPER 6; Ram - 1024 Xerox pc3700 pushed to the max
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