Problems with boot up

  bigclimber 16:22 14 Aug 2006

Hey, I know there may be a similar thread amongst the wealth of info here but I have searched and not seen anything so a bit of adice would be great.

My PC has decided not to boot up. It starts up but gives no normal noises (single beep etc.) though it sounds like the hard drive is loading, the fans are on etc but no display on the monitor. The motherboard displays FF and nothing else i.e not going through a normal start up routine. I thought it may be the power unit so swapped cases but has made no difference. Could it be the motherboard or CPU?

However, when I put my hard drive this time into my parents PC (as I normally do when I's around home) my last sector on the hard drive is missing. It is not the one with the operating system (XP) loaded onto it, just a random one I keep photo's in - so could a dodgy sector prevent start-up?

Conversely, when I put my parents hard drive into my computer I do not get a beep but a display with the hard drive failing to boot and attempts (but fails) to boot in Safe mode.

I'm confused, this is a bit beyond my computer knowledge! Anyone help please,


  Graham. 16:51 14 Aug 2006

Can we assume you are fitting your hard drive as slave in your parents PC?

And when you put their hard drive in yours it is as master? (If so, it is unlikely to boot).

  bigclimber 16:55 14 Aug 2006

Sorry - yeah, my hard drive is fitted as a slave to my parents and as I say normally shows all the sectors as additional drives but now misses the last one off. All others work fine.

Re. their hard drive into mine...yeah I did put it as the master - I was told it should still work but use basic drivers - I'm assuming not then - is it because of drive incompatability?

Thanks for your post so far...

  bigclimber 17:38 14 Aug 2006

I've also swapped the RAM with my parents computer and it works fine - in fact I am currently using my parents graphics card and RAM at the moment...I hope this eliminates them!

What is next do we reakon...?

  Graham. 17:39 14 Aug 2006

Unless they're identical machines, they will have different BIOS, boot sectors, etc.

As for your hard drive, the missing sector (partition) shouldn't be a problem in itself, but may be part of the larger picture.

Assuming the drive has failed, I would extract and save any valuable data whilst it is responding.

  Graham. 17:41 14 Aug 2006

Which PC are you on now?

  bigclimber 17:47 14 Aug 2006

Ah, I see what your saying about the BIOS and boot sectors - didn't realise that. Nope - they are not identical PC's, for starters mine runs Athlon and the 'rents has a Pentium chip in it!

I think I best start taking some stuff off my hard drive like you say before it completely fails...though the main problem with that is My Documents were in my own user area and now I cannot access them on this machine...

...this machine being my parents - with their hard drive, CPU and motherboard but my RAM and graphics card...


  bigclimber 17:48 14 Aug 2006

PS...mine is sitting to one side in a rather sorry state at the moment (minus RAM and a graphics card :-(

  Graham. 17:51 14 Aug 2006

Of course, it could have a touch of the Nadgers
click here :-)

  bigclimber 18:45 14 Aug 2006

I hope not - though I'm not sure which is more complex...this problem or the Nadgers...mind you the Nadgers is more funny!

I wondered if there was a way of telling if the motherboard was gone?

  Graham. 19:32 14 Aug 2006

If you know the motherboard details, try their website. I have a feeling that FF means 'functioning fine'. When you switch on, the display should keep changing as it POSTs.

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