Solved Why won't my computer won't start up?

Emachines Desktop / intel pentium proces...
May 21, 2014 at 03:55:16
Specs: Windows XP
On startup, I get the following - IOS ROM checksum error . . . Detecting floppy drive A media . . . Drive A error . . system halt . . . and a high pitched sound

See More: Why wont my computer wont start up?

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✔ Best Answer
May 22, 2014 at 06:20:02
Try unplugging the tower and then opening up the case. You should exercise static discharge precautions to protect the sensitive components. Ground yourself. If you have 3 prong wiring the case to your computer should be grounded, even with the power strip in the off position. Simply touch the case before touching anything inside the case.

Now, I suggest you re-seat everything inside the case EXCEPT the CPU and heatsink/fan. Unplug wiring, one by one so you don't lose track of where they go. remove all add in cards if present and reinsert them fully.

Remove the memory sticks, one by one and snap each of them in and out 4 or 5 times to burnish the contacts.

While you have the case open I suggest you also blow the insides out using canned or compressed air. This will be messy so you may want to move the tower to a better location. Pay close attention to the power supply. Blow it out from both ends.

While you have the case open, examine the capacitors for bulging or leaking. See the link below to know what to look for.

One short beep is normal when starting the computer. Are your beeps long or short? Either way, beeps can be grouped with multiple beeps in a group with a slight pause between then a repeat of the original group.

When booting the computer you may see a message telling your what BIOS brand a version you have. You can use that to determine what the beeps mean. The BIOS chip is also labeled. AWARD and AMI are the most common.

The cables to the external hardware can also corrode so re-seating them is also good. The monitor cable should be fastened using the thumb screws to keep it tightly seated.

Of course you need to eventually replace that CMOS battery.

Once the computer is running, I suggest you download and run in real time a utility called HWMonitor. That program can show you what the temperatures and voltages are at any time. A failing power supply could cause problems. The main voltages are 3.3V, 5V and +12V. All those should run +-5% of those values.

Get HWMonitor from the link below.

http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmo...

You might also check the condition of the memory using Memtest86+. GEt that from the link below.

http://www.memtest.org/

Hope this helps.



#1
May 21, 2014 at 04:22:50
Usually a faulty motherboard. It will have to be replaced.

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#2
May 21, 2014 at 04:35:53
Thank you, Phil. I did more research and stumbled on the possibility it might be the CMOS battery? Could it be that simple? I did not have trouble with keeping correct/current time, which apparently is a clue about a battery. For quite a while I have been having trouble with the computer not booting and after a few days of having the monitor disconnected, it would start and stay on for a few days.

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#3
May 21, 2014 at 05:46:36
The CMOS battery is included to save the changeable settings in the BIOS screens when the power to the motherboard is interrupted. If you keep the computer connected to the AC power the battery shouldn't matter.

So, if you enter the BIOS/ setup screens and can reset the time and date it should hold those settings.

Are you sure the error isn't BIOS ROM checksum error?

There are any number of reasons to see that error.

Post the model of the computer and anything you have tried to correct the error.

Do you use a power strip or any device that totally interrupts the power to the tower, including the On/off switch located on some power supplies?


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#4
May 22, 2014 at 05:51:12
OtheHill- yes, it is BIOS. I had difficulty reading it before. It is an emachines T3103. I first had trouble with it starting; I would get a repeating single beep. The monitor is not the original and I don't remember why I tried something there but I found if I turned the power strip off (because I could not turn off the tower) and disconnected the monitor from the tower for a few days, then turned the power strip on, turned the computer on and then connected the monitor, everything would work for a few days. I do not turn the tower off, allowing hibernation. Then, in the middle of anything, it would freeze up again and I would repeat. The time between freezings seems to have decreased and now I got the checksum error. The power strip is currently off and the monitor is disconnected.

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#5
May 22, 2014 at 06:20:02
✔ Best Answer
Try unplugging the tower and then opening up the case. You should exercise static discharge precautions to protect the sensitive components. Ground yourself. If you have 3 prong wiring the case to your computer should be grounded, even with the power strip in the off position. Simply touch the case before touching anything inside the case.

Now, I suggest you re-seat everything inside the case EXCEPT the CPU and heatsink/fan. Unplug wiring, one by one so you don't lose track of where they go. remove all add in cards if present and reinsert them fully.

Remove the memory sticks, one by one and snap each of them in and out 4 or 5 times to burnish the contacts.

While you have the case open I suggest you also blow the insides out using canned or compressed air. This will be messy so you may want to move the tower to a better location. Pay close attention to the power supply. Blow it out from both ends.

While you have the case open, examine the capacitors for bulging or leaking. See the link below to know what to look for.

One short beep is normal when starting the computer. Are your beeps long or short? Either way, beeps can be grouped with multiple beeps in a group with a slight pause between then a repeat of the original group.

When booting the computer you may see a message telling your what BIOS brand a version you have. You can use that to determine what the beeps mean. The BIOS chip is also labeled. AWARD and AMI are the most common.

The cables to the external hardware can also corrode so re-seating them is also good. The monitor cable should be fastened using the thumb screws to keep it tightly seated.

Of course you need to eventually replace that CMOS battery.

Once the computer is running, I suggest you download and run in real time a utility called HWMonitor. That program can show you what the temperatures and voltages are at any time. A failing power supply could cause problems. The main voltages are 3.3V, 5V and +12V. All those should run +-5% of those values.

Get HWMonitor from the link below.

http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmo...

You might also check the condition of the memory using Memtest86+. GEt that from the link below.

http://www.memtest.org/

Hope this helps.


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#6
May 22, 2014 at 12:22:01
Thank you so much for all this awesome information. I will work on it next week and post the results.
pam

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