Help! My pc just packed up

  cherria 10:48 20 Dec 2003

I'm looking for some diagnostic help.

For some time, the on/off switch on my desktop PC had been a bit dodgy, it would take many presses before the PC eventually came to life.

This morning though, it powered up but seemed to be dead. No output to the screen.

It looks like it it trying to access the disk but gets no further. Not even a BIOS screen.

Any thoughts on how I should proceed with diagnosing the problem.

Its pretty much a machine I built myself, an AMD Athlon Thunderbird 1.4GHz on a Gigabyte GA7DX motherboard and an All-in-wonder 128 graphics card.

Any thoughts welcome

  Jester2K II 11:53 20 Dec 2003

"it powered up but seemed to be dead. No output to the screen." How many beeps at the POST srtage (ie black and white screen when you normally get one short beep)?

What colour is the montuior light (ornage or green?)

Culd be the PSU. Can you swap with a mates to test?

  Gongoozler 12:07 20 Dec 2003

cherria, if the computer is showing any sign of life, then the power supply and switch are probably working ok, but you can check the 5V and 12V supplies on one of the spare drive connectors. The next thing to try is resetting the BIOS using the reset jumper on the motherboard. After that, you can check that all the pci cards, memory and cables are properly plugged in. The next thing to try is to disconnect everything from the motherboard except the processor with its heatsink, a minimum of memory, the graphics card, the case speaker, the power supply and the power switch. If your motherboard still doesn't boot, unscrew it from the case and rest it on a sheet of insulating material such a sheet of card. The only possible causes of the problem now are the few remaining components. Faulty memory usually causes a BIOS beep signal, so if you know the power supply is good, the fault has to be in the motherboard, processor or graphics card. Removing the graphics card should also give an error beep, then you can only find if it is the processor or motherboard by substitution.

  cherria 12:30 20 Dec 2003

Ok, I hate these intermittent problems.

Its back on line but the PSU fan sounded aweful when I started it up.

When it was 'dead' there were no beeps on power on, just a power and HDD led lit and the screen was in a no-signal state.

It's all looking a bit 'new PSU' ish unless anybody anybody thinks there is something more terminal wrong.

  Jester2K II 12:40 20 Dec 2003

PSU - borrow a mates first.

  Gongoozler 12:47 20 Dec 2003

If the power supply has shown signs of failure, then I don't think it is worth risking the rest of the computer with it. I was quite impressed with this 450W supply from EBuyer for under £20 click here

  wee eddie 21:06 20 Dec 2003

From what you say, the VDU stayed blank, rather than exhibiting a sign saying "No Signal" or similar.

This may sound mad but: Frequently all machines like to be cosseted!

1. If you have a machine that blows air. Unplug your PC > take the case off > blow out all the dust > pay particular attention to all the fans and the Power Supply > a jet of air works wonders.

2. Remove and re-seat all the memory chips and cards > Remember to earth yourself first > Remember to touch the cards by their edges only.

3. Re-plug and turn on > visually check that all fans are running > If all looks well > turn off and return the cover.

This often achieves the required result. Why I have no idea but it's called TLC!

  SketcH 21:11 20 Dec 2003

This happened to me.

I upgraded from a 300w PSU to a 400w after the expansion of a new GeforceFX graphics card that was sucking the bejesus out of my old PSU, that left no power for any of the other components.

Its a cheap upgrade, that I would advise you make before the pulling out of any more hair.

Good luck.

  cherria 13:37 16 Feb 2004

That was it. I upgraded the PSU and all now seems to be working fine again. The PC got much quieter at the same time (Double bonus!)

thanks to all

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