Motherboard fried?

Emachines / W3115
August 13, 2010 at 14:37:55
Specs: Windows XP
Somebody trashed this tower, and I recovered it before it was buried somewhere in a landfill. It's still a nice looking tower with a clean looking interior. I was hoping to wipe it and install Fedora or Ubuntu on it and use it as my secondary computer.

However, when I tried booting it up, everything seemed to be functioning correctly, but I got no display and the hard drive didn't sound like it was spinning. I tried removing the RAM to see if the motherboard would beep, but it doesn't. I tried placing one of my PCIEx16 slot graphics cards to run the display from that, and still nothing. The activity LED blinks a couple times when it starts, and when I eject the DVD-ROM and push the tray back in, the LED on the DVD-ROM and activity LED below the power button begins to blink as it tries to read discs.

Upon visual inspection of the board, it doesn't appear to have any leaks or burns or any other debilitating marks or abrasions.

It might all point to a dead PSU? I'm thinking about swapping my PSU with this secondary's to see if it would work but I don't want to risk something bad happening (although I probably already fried my graphics card by running it off the possibly damaged PSU)

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August 13, 2010 at 15:38:00
I doubt that you fried your card. If anything, it probably didn't get any power at all. Try swapping out the psu if you have a spare. Even if the hdd is no good, it will still post.

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August 13, 2010 at 18:22:31
Does it have onboard video? Use it. Disconnect both the power & data cables from all the drives (floppy, CD/DVD & HDD) & remove all cards. This will lighten the load on the PSU. Remove all RAM except one stick. While the power cord is unplugged, reset the BIOS using the ClearCMOS jumper...if you don't know which jumper it is, remove the coin battery for a few seconds. Disconnect all external devices except for the monitor & keyboard (preferrably PS/2 rather than USB). Do not connect a mouse. Now try to boot up. If you still don't get a display, the problem is either the CPU, motherboard or PSU.

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August 13, 2010 at 23:07:35
"Try swapping out the psu if you have a spare."

The old PSU was a 250W, I think. I swapped it with my 450W and had the same result.

"Does it have onboard video? Use it."

That was the first thing I tried. No display. I swapped the graphics card. Same result. And it wasn't fried when tied with the old PSU, thankfully.

"Disconnect both the power & data cables ... Disconnect all external devices ... Now try to boot up."

I stripped this baby down to the bone, to the point where it was only the PSU, the mobo, the CPU, and the CMOS battery. I only did this to try and get a beep or two for not having any RAM. From there, I decided to at least try and slowly attach devices back on, from the RAM to the hard drives to the DVD-ROMs. Nothing. I'm about to give up and strip it for parts, it has a 120GB hard drive I can use for backups (although IDE, ugh)

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