No display on Solaris 150

Sun microsystems / Sun blade 150
March 8, 2010 at 02:14:12
Specs: Solaris 8
Hi,

I have couple of Sun Blade 150 servers. Once I powered on, im getting Single Beep sound but no display. I have done some basic troubleshooting with RAM, Display cables and other power cables. FYI, Display card is inbuilt. Any suggestion regarding this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Karthik


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#1
March 8, 2010 at 07:03:38
"...im getting Single Beep sound but no display."
No display at all, or you do have a display at first, then no display once the operating system starts to load ?

Are the power and hard disk activity leds lighting up?
Is the hard disk activity led blinking while booting, as it normally should while loading the operating system?

Apparently these either came with a crt (tube) monitor, or an LCD monitor.
Are you using the monitor it came with ?
If so, if it's an LCD display, the backlight may be burnt out.
Have you tried connecting a different monitor?


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#2
March 8, 2010 at 23:28:08
Thanks for your quick response.
No display at all.
There is no LED for harddisk, but I feel that it is working.
I have checked with both CRT and LCD monitors. No use. But we didnt get the monitor along with the servers. I have tried with SUN monitor and also other monitor. we have 8 more sun blade 150 servers which is working fine with all type of monitors(CRT and LCD(hp)). Any other suggestions please.....

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#3
March 9, 2010 at 11:07:42
No video at all is usually merely a symptom, and there's actually nothing wrong with the video adapter or the monitor - something else is wrong.

"FYI, Display card is inbuilt"
The term CARD is frequently mis-used. A CARD is plugged into a mboard slot and can be removed. In this case, it's a video or graphics or display adapter, but if it's built into the mboard and cannot be removed, IT'S NOT A CARD !!

Any monitor that works with the other working sun blade 150 servers should work with the two sun blade 150 servers that you're having problems with.

A single beep while booting can be either the same as what you normally hear on the other working sun blade 150 servers , indicating the mboard POST has completed successfuly, or it can sound different and indicate an error - lower or higher tone, and/or shorter or longer in duration. Does the beep sound the same as on the working sun blade 150 servers ??

The most common reasons for no video are

- there is a problem with the reliability of the connection of the ram in it's slot(s)

A common thing that can happen with ram, even ram that worked fine previously, is the ram has, or has developed, a poor connection in it's slot(s).
This usually happens a long time after the ram was installed, but it can happen with new ram, or after moving the computer case from one place to another, and I've had even new modules that needed to have their contacts cleaned.

See response 2 in this - try cleaning the contacts on the ram modules, and making sure the modules are properly seated:
http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...

In this case, you can consult the Service manual, or the ram installation document, for the sun blade 150 series - see below

- somone installed ram that is NOT compatible with using it in the mboard. E.g. this sun blade 150 series can use 512mb SDram modules, but it's probable only ones that have 16 chips, 8 chips on each side, NOT 8 chips on one side, will be compatible.
In this case, since you have other working sun blade 150 servers, any ram that works in the working ones will be compatible with using it in the ones with no video.

- the power supply is failing.
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...

If it is failing, you can usually replace it with any decent standard sized standard ATX PS with the same capacity or greater.

Standard (PS/2) power supply size - 86mm high, 150mm wide, 140mm deep, or 3 3/8" h x 5 7/8" w x 5 1/2" d , or very close to that, though the depth can be more or less for some PSs.

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

NOTE that it appears these sun blade 150 servers use mostly if not all standard PC computer parts.
The power supply is probably a standard wired standard sized ATX (or AT?) power supply. If it is, the main power connector from the PS, which probably has a one piece 20 position connector if it's ATX, with 19 or 20 of the positions having one or more wires, the wire colors being the same at each position as for a standard ATX power supply.

In any case, any power supply from one of your working sun blade 150 servers should work fine in the ones that have no video.

- there are loose connections inside the computer case.
Unplug the case/power supply, or switch off the AC power to it otherwise.
Power off your monitor.
Open up the case. Check all the connections of the wiring to make sure they are all the way onto their pins and into their sockets, especially the main connector from the power supply. The wires close to the mboard going into the main power connector/socket should be more or less perpendicular to the mboard surface rather than at an angle. Make sure all cards in slots are all the way down in their slots.
......

This is unlikely, but certainly possible....

Since these are relatively old computers, it's possible that they had electrolytic capacitors installed on them that were not properly made, and those tend to fail eventually.

Examine the mboard to see if you have bad capacitors, and/or other findable signs of mboard damage .

This was the original bad capacitor problem - has some example pictures.
History of why the exploding capacitors and which mboard makers were affected:
http://members.datafast.net.au/~dft...

What to look for, mboard symptoms, example pictures:
http://www.badcaps.net/pages.php?vid=5
Home page that site
- what the problem is caused by
- he says there are STILL bad capacitors on more recent mboards.
http://www.badcaps.net/

Pictures of blown capacitors, other components, power supplies, Athlon cpu's, etc.:
http://www.halfdone.com/Personal/Jo...
........................................................

References.

Sun Blade 150 Workstation - main support page
http://www.sun.com/desktop/workstat...

Sun System Handbook
Sun Blade[tm] 150 Workstation
http://sunsolve.sun.com/handbook_pu...

Information areas - only the blue links work

Related Documentation - manuals:
http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/coll/s...
Includes ram installation info.

In that list....
Sun Blade 150 Service Manual
http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/81...
Lots of info in that, including pictures, diagrams.
.....

Sun Blade 150 - Full Components List
Diagrams near the end
http://sunsolve.sun.com/handbook_pu...

Part number 370-4872 - Mitac 250 Watt Power Supply

Sun Blade[tm] 150 Workstation: Hardware Specifications
http://sunsolve.sun.com/handbook_pu...

Graphics - supported cards link is no longer valid
.....

4 ram slots - 128mb to 512mb SDram modules in each slot - 2gb total maximum .

Third party parts available:
http://www.anysystem.com/sunblade15...


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Related Solutions

#4
March 15, 2010 at 05:09:11
Thanks for your quick and detailed reply and interest.

I have checked the "Beep Sound" with working server and faulty server. Both are same.

Power supply also taken from a same unit for both working and faulty servers. No display again.

To ensure with RAM faulty, I have taken RAM from faulty server and replaced in working server. its success. So, can I come to the conclusion that RAM is good ?

I have taken an external display card (working condition) from sun blade 1500 server and fixed with faulty server. No display. But I fixed the same display card to the working condition server (sun blade 150). Its working.

Still, I havnt ended my troubleshooting. I will keep on trying to make it working. Expecting your further suggesions please....


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#5
March 15, 2010 at 11:57:32
"I have checked the "Beep Sound" with working server and faulty server. Both are same."
"Power supply also taken from a same unit for both working and faulty servers. No display again."
"I have taken an external display card (working condition) from sun blade 1500 server and fixed with faulty server. No display. But I fixed the same display card to the working condition server (sun blade 150). Its working.

OK

"To ensure with RAM faulty, I have taken RAM from faulty server and replaced in working server. its success. So, can I come to the conclusion that RAM is good ?"

It appears that all the configurations of this server series use the same mboard. If the mboard is the same, yes, you can conclude there's nothing wrong with the ram that was on the servers that produce no video.
However, did you try re-seating the ram on the servers that produce no video ??

Did you inspect the mboards on the servers that produce no video to see if they have failing or failed capacitors or other signs of damage ?

Use good lighting and a magnifying device to examine the ram slots. If you see any slot that has damaged or missing contacts, and/or evidence of the plastic having melted, and/or black carbon deposits, someone booted the computer when a ram module was installed backwards in that slot. That ram slot and it's circuits can never work again, however, sometimes you can still get the mboard working again by cleaning up all the carbon and severing or removing any thing that bridges the contacts, and installing good ram in at least one other ram slot - not all the other ram slots may still work.

Sometimes, in theory, computers with defective drives or damaged data cables could produce no display, even though the mboard produced it's normal sounding one beep that indicates the bios successfully completed the POST.
Try removing both the power connections to the drives, and the data cable connections to the drives at the mboard end.

Similarly, also try removing all cards in mboard slots, if it has them. .



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