computer frooze, no post screen

Gigabyte / Ga-81915g pro (rev1.2)
March 31, 2009 at 15:05:20
Specs: Windows XP SP3, pentium4/2g
Well, my computer was on just on the desktop i didn't have any applications running. I went downstairs to make some food, and when i came back upstairs my computer was frozen. so i pressed the restart button and then There was no beep on post, and no video is showing up. i tried taking out the CMOS battery and putting it back in, no luck. I then started to unplug my components (such as the hard drive dvd drive,ect) same thing happened when i restarted. I begin to think it was my video card, so i took it out on plugged my monitor to the motherboard, same thing happened. So after that i started playing with the RAM and putting them in different spots and seeing if it will boot with just once RAM stick, nothing happened. Finally i tried putting in a new CMOS battery, ....well i got no luck with that either. So I'm all out of ideas, if someone could think of something and help me out that would be great. Thanks.

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#1
March 31, 2009 at 18:17:24
ATX mboards are always powered in some places even when the computer is not running as long as live AC is being supplied to the power supply.

Did you unplug the computer or otherwise switch off the AC to the computer at all times while you were fiddling around with components and connections inside the case?
......

No video is usually merely a symptom and there's usually nothing actually wrong with your video adapter or your monitor.
......

Failing power supplies are common and can cause your symptoms.
Check your PS.
They often partially work, fans and hard drives may spin, leds may come on, yet you may get no video and the mboard will not boot all the way.
See response 4 in this:
http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...
.....

A cmos battery that is too weak or dead will NOT cause the computer to not boot!
....

"So after that i started playing with the RAM and putting them in different spots .....it will boot with just once RAM stick"


It is extremely rare for ram to go "BAD" when the same ram was working fine previously, and almost impossible for more than one to go "BAD" at the same time.

Ram that works in another mboard , or any ram you buy or have lying around, may not work properly, or sometimes, not at all - even if it physically fits and is the right overall type (e.g. SDram, DDR, DDR2, etc.; PCxxxx, xxx mhz) for your mboard. In the worst cases of incompatibilty your mboard WILL NOT BOOT all the way with it installed, and the mboard may not even beep - the ram has to be compatible with the mboard's main chipset, or in the case of recent mboards, compatible with the memory controller built into the cpu.

Since you've been fiddling with the ram...

See response 2 in this - make sure the modules are properly seated:
http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...



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#2
April 1, 2009 at 05:15:49
Thanks tubesandwires, after i posted this i went and swapped out my PSU for one that worked.. well.... still no luck, so now I'm wondering if i should clean some stuff up like you said in http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...

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#3
April 1, 2009 at 13:23:36
You didn't answer this:

Did you unplug the computer or otherwise switch off the AC to the computer at all times while you were fiddling around with components and connections inside the case?
.......

Yes, you could, especially regarding re-seating the ram, but...

I searched using your model number - it's still being sold new recently, so it can't be very old.

"A cmos battery that is too weak or dead will NOT cause the computer to not boot!"

Coin shaped cmos batteries typically last about 5 years. It's extremely unlikely it would be too weak or dead. It isn't old enough yet.
.....

Power supplies sometimes damage things other than themselves when they fail - often the mboard. It can happen with any power supply, but the cheaper the power supply, the worse the quality, the more likely that is to happen.Most computer related pieces are better quality now than they were in the past, but there are more bad el-cheapo power supplies now than ever before!

What brand, model, and wattage capacity is the original power supply?
The new power supply?

Your mboard has onboard video, but do you have a PCI-E video card installed?

Your power supply must have at least the minumum capacity required to support a system with the graphics card you are using installed, or the max graphics card you might install in the future.
(Onboard video - video built into the mboard - IS NOT A CARD!)
You can go to the video card maker's web site and look up the specs for the model - often under system requirements - the minimum PS wattage, and, more important, the minimum amperage the PS must supply at 12v is stated. If you don't find that, any card with the same video chipset including any letters after the model number has very similar minimum PS requirements.
If you want to cover any possible video card, a decent quality minimum 600 ot 650 watt power supply will handle any current high end video card, or even a X2 card (two video chipsets on one card) or two cards in two slots.

Don't buy an el-cheapo PS.
See response 3 in this:
http://www.computing.net/answers/ha...
........

If the mboard HAS been damaged, it's very likely nothing else has been damaged, so if you replace the mboard with the same model, or with a newer model that can definately be used with your same cpu and ram, there's a very good chance your system will work fine with all your other pieces.
.....

If you want to rule out whether the ram has been damaged, which is extremely unlikely unless you installed it BACKWARDS in the ram slot when you were fiddling with the ram, which can also fry the mboard as well (you would have noticed a definite stink immediately after you attempted to boot the computer, some of the ram module contacts are damaged, the ram slot it was in is damaged - if you clean the melted plastic out of the damaged ram slot the mboard MIGHT boot after that)

Make sure you have a speaker or speakers or the equivalent connected to the mboard so you can hear mboard beeps (see your mboard manual if you need to).
Remove the AC power to the case/power supply.
Remove all the ram.
Restore AC power.
Try to boot.
If nothing else is wrong, you will get no video but you will hear a pattern of beeps that indicate no ram is installed, or a ram problem.
E.g. for an Award bios or a bios based on one, that's often a beep of about a half second, silence for a half second, a beep of about a half second, silence for a half second, continuously.


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#4
April 1, 2009 at 14:31:47
thanks again tubesandwires, sorry i couldn't answer everything i was going to be late for school. Anyways, yes i always unplug the AC before i fiddle with anything inside my computer. I was using a casegears, 680W PSU. Yes, i was using a PCI-E video card. I never put the ram in backwards, and i do have my motherboard speaker connected. I did try what you told me about booting it with no ram installed, and i still didn't get a beep.

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#5
April 1, 2009 at 15:37:53
What does happen when you attempt to boot into Windows? Do you see any screens before the splash screen? Any beeps? Any fan noise or drive lights?

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#6
April 1, 2009 at 19:20:23
Hey othehill. Well i start up my computer and the fans start running and the hard drive led is showing activity. So it seems like everything is ok, but there is no beep and i don't see the splash screen at all. My monitor just stays blank.

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#7
April 1, 2009 at 22:41:00
Sounds like a damaged mboard. You should get one beep early in the boot when the ram is installed, and you should get a beep pattern when no ram is installed.

"I was using a casegears, 680W PSU"

I'd never heard of casegears before. I looked on the web and they're rather cheap in price for whatever capacity - that's suspicious to me, but I couldn't find obvious evidence that are are known to fail more often.


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#8
April 2, 2009 at 02:23:51
Well try to look for new Power Supply just to make sure. If you think the mother board is fried get a new one as well. But are the LED blinking? And are the Fans functioning well?

Want A Weekly Update on Latest System Security Problem http://www.systemsecurityinstitute.org


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#9
April 2, 2009 at 04:54:48
Removing the RAM and attempting to boot should produce an audible error code. That would tend to indicate the board is OK. The power supply would be the first suspected hardware.

In response #2 you state you tried a known working PSU. What was the wattage rating of that PSU?


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#10
April 2, 2009 at 14:15:10
well, what power supply do you recommend? All the fans light up, and everything seems to be working like it should, all the leds go on like normal when you boot it up, like the hard drive led and dvd drive leds, all the fans are spinning. The wattage of the other PSU i putt on it was 480 watts, and i didn't have my graphics card in. My monitor was plugged into the on board slot.

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#11
April 2, 2009 at 14:41:30
Have you tried clearing the CMOS by removing the battery or preferably using the jumper marked clrcmos? You may have disabled the integrated graphics and clearing the CMOs will enable it. If you get video on the monitor then immediately enter the BIOS screens and reset the values as needed. Date, time, boot order, etc.

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#12
April 2, 2009 at 14:45:51
Failing PSs often partially work, fans and hard drives may spin, leds may come on, yet you may get no video and the mboard will not boot all the way.

Your mboard probably requires you plug in an extra power connection from the PS to the mboard other than the main 24 "pin" one - did you plug that in??

When you have the video card installed it may also require you plug in an additional connector from the PS to the card - do you plug that in??

480 watts is definately more than enough to handle your system when the video card is not installed.

Try that PS hooked up to whatever it worked fine with before - if it still works there's no reason to buy another PS - your mboard is probably damaged.
.........

Did you by any chance move the clear cmos jumper on the mboard??
If you did, if it is still in the clear cmos position your mboard will probably NOT work normally - the jumper must be in the normal position.


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#13
April 2, 2009 at 14:46:28
It sounds like the mobo is dead.

Your fans and drives are okay because electrical power is still being routed throughout your case and motherboard, and they usually are not affected by the brain death of a mobo.

You were right to try all those configuration changes and if in all cases the system appears dead, can't even cough (beep), then one or more critical motherboard logic circuits are gone


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#14
April 2, 2009 at 15:25:15
yes, i have tried clearing the cmos, using the jumper, and i did plug in the 24 pin to the motherboard,and i took the cmos jumper out before i booted it again, i was just trying to boot it again, and i can hear two little clicks..... I'm wondering if that means anything.

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#15
April 3, 2009 at 01:51:20
Well try buying the same brand we don't want to fry up the motherboard if it's alright. Next try to see the othe component by installing them to another mother board that is working properly.

Want A Weekly Update on Latest System Security Problem http://www.systemsecurityinstitute.org


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#16
April 3, 2009 at 02:07:36
Well just try to find out the problem by brute force.

Want A Weekly Update on Latest System Security Problem http://www.systemsecurityinstitute.org


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#17
April 3, 2009 at 14:37:43
well, i do have to say that everything on this computer is pretty old, I'm using ata hard drives, lol and i can't find a good motherboard anymore that will support them, i have tested out my PSU on another computer and it wokred fine, so as of right now i'm thinking of just building a whole new pc

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#18
April 5, 2009 at 11:08:26
All IDE, EIDE, and SATA drives are ATA drives - SATA is shorthand for Serial ATA.
ATA is shorthand for AT Attachment.
The AT comes from IBM AT computer models, that supported Intel 286 cpus, that were the first ones to have IDE controller support built into their mboard bios. Before that, there were only MFM and RLL hard drives, and you usually had to have a MFM or RLL drive controller board in a slot, and connect a MFM or RLL hard drive to the board - very few mboards had built in RLL or MFM drive controllers.

After SATA controllers and SATA drives came out, some have called and are calling the IDE ATA PATA - for Parallel ATA, since all drives previous to SATA transfer the data in a parallel way, rather than the serial way SATA drives use.

The UDMA 33 or 66 or 100 or 133 for EIDE drives, or for SATA drives, 150 or 300, speed is the maximum BURST data transfer rate - the drive DOES NOT run at that speed all the time, and can only run at that max speed for short periods of time, directly dependant on the size of the memory cache built into the drive's pc board on the drive itself. If a drive continues to be accessed for one session, once the contents of the drive's memory cache have been exhausted, at most a couple of minutes, the data transfer rate slows down to a much slower sustained data transfer rate - e.g. the fastest I've seen for new drives is about 60mb/sec.

You DO see a difference with drives with a faster UDMA rating while booting and while loading Windows and while doing things with files small enough that they don't exhaust the memory cache capacity on the drive, but if you do something such as transfer huge files from one place to another, the max data transfer any drive can acheive once the contents of the drive's memory cache have been used up is the sustained data transfer rate rating.

If your EIDE (PATA) drives are working fine there's no reason you can't use them on a newer mboard until they're no longer usable. If they're capable of UDMA 133 (IDE drives 80gb and smaller are usually capable of UDMA100 or less) you're not going to notice much difference most of the time between the performance of them and SATA drives, especially if the SATA controllers are in IDE compatibilty mode in the mboard bios which limits them to max UDMA 133 burst speeds anyway.

New mboard models usually have only one Primary IDE controller and only one IDE header on the mboard, so you can only connect up to two IDE drives to the mboard directly. .
If you have more than two IDE drives,
- If an IDE hard drive has Windows installed on it and you want to boot from that drive, I recommend you connect it to the mboard IDE header . If you also have one or more IDE optical drives, I recommend you connect one to the mboard IDE header.
- the best most reliable solution is to connect one or more IDE drives to a PCI EIDE (PATA) controller card, which supports up to 4 more EIDE drives and can be bought for $30 or less, and comes with one or two 80 wire IDE data cables . However, make sure the card chipset supports ATAPI if you want to be able to connect an optical drive too it - most do.
- or - you can get individual IDE to SATA adapters, available for $15 each and up, that plug into the IDE drive that allow it to be connected to the mboard's SATA header by using a SATA data cable between the adapter and the SATA header - the mboard bios then recognizes the drive as a SATA drive with a max 150mb/sec data transfer rate rating - but there is currently only one choice of the chipset used and some report problems with using those for an EIDE drive - read the customer reviews for the model before you buy it, such as on the newegg or tigerdirect web sites.
- or - you can get a PCI-E drive controller card that supports both EIDE and SATA drives that has a single IDE header on it and you connect up to two IDE drives to that, but many report problems with using an IDE drive with those - read the customer reviews for the model before you buy it, such as on the newegg or tigerdirect web sites.



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