First self build - need help!

June 6, 2009 at 20:59:55
Specs: WXP Home, AMD Phenom II X3 720 w/ 4gb Corsair DDR3-1333
I put together my first self-build and was expecting to see something about the BIOS on the screen but when it boots I see nothing.

Here’s a list of the hardware I have:

Case – CoolerMaster CM 590 ATX
MoBo – Gigabyte GA-MA790XT-UD4P
Processor – AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black
Memory – Corsair DDR3-1333 2gb x 2
HDD – Hitachi 3.5” 500gb SATA
DVD burner – Samsung 22x SATA
Video card – HIS HD4850 512mb PCIE2
Power supply – CoolerMaster 600w
Monitor – Acer 20” LCD (I know, it’s an Acer…but it was on sale and I was already over budget)

Here are the facts as I know them to be:
1. System is getting power – system fans are turning.
2. Processor fan is turning
3. Video card fan is turning
4. I can hear the hard drive spin up
5. DVD is getting power – door opens and closes
6. Monitor works with my laptop, although it doesn’t look great.
7. I attached corded keyboard and corded mouse I had laying around.
8. Tried hooking monitor up with DVI connector and VGA adaptor. Also tried both connections on video card. If I move from one monitor connection to the other the monitor briefly says “no signal”.
9. Mobo has a SATA bracket that goes in one of the card slots. I disconnected power and the SATA cables from the mobo to rule that out.
10. Mobo has 4 slots for memory, 2 blue and 2 white. I’ve tried moving the sticks around since I’m not sure if they have to be in a certain position or if one of the slots might not be functioning correctly.
11. I’ve tried connecting the HDD and DVD to different SATA ports, thinking maybe one of the SATA ports isn’t working correctly.

From the start, the only part that I’m a little unsure about is the memory. It isn’t listed as having been tested with this mobo but the saleslady said she was sure it would work.

One question: The main power harness from the power supply has 2 fittings on the end – 1 with 8 pins and 1 with 24. I’m assuming both of those need to be plugged in.

The only thing I can think of that I did that they said not to do was to unseat the processor fan. When I first put it on top of the processor I didn’t realize the cord for the fan wouldn’t reach. I took it off and turned it 180 degrees so it would reach. Maybe I don't have enough "goo" between the fan and processor now?

Any assistance is greatly appreciated. I don't think I'm that far from having a great mean work machine!! :)

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June 6, 2009 at 21:49:59

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June 7, 2009 at 04:50:47
Try putting a stick of memory in each white slot. Not the blue slot. Are the memory stick identical? Any beeps when you start it?

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June 13, 2009 at 07:04:02
Thanks for the great article. As a result of pulling everything out of the machine and bench testing, I found that I had not plugged in the 4 pin power connection for the CPU. I also hadn't plugged in the power connector to the video card (this is my first video card that required a power connection).

The components are in the machine and I'm able to access the BIOS. I've set the boot sequence to CD first and hard drive second. I'm getting the following message:

Boot from CD/DVD
Disk boot failure, insert system disk and press enter

I've unhooked the hard drive so the only thing connected is the CD/DVD drive. I've changed SATA cables on the DVD drive. I know the DVD drive is getting power because I can open the drawer. I've inserted my WXP CD but when I hit enter it comes back with the same message. I've tried my WXP CD from another machine and same result. Is the next step to pull the CD drive out of my old machine and try it in this one?

One other possibility would be to pull the "C" drive out of the working machine and install it into the new machine. Would that work?

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Related Solutions

June 13, 2009 at 08:45:24
Boot disk failure message is normal when the computer can't find a boot able disk. Your hard drive has no OS installed so it is not going to be boot able. That leaves the CD drive and your WinXP CD.

When you first boot the computer do you see screens identifying the various hardware? Or maybe just a logo for the the motherboard brand? If the logo then tap del key and enter the BIOS. Find the entry for logos and disable all. While in the BIOS verify that the SATA & IDE ports you are using are enabled.

After saving any changes watch the POST screens to verify all your hardware is properly identified. Drives should be identified by both model and full capacity.

If the CD drive is showing in the POST screens then watch for a message to hit any key to boot from the CD. If you don't see that message then there may be something wrong with your CD.

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