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Failure to Boot

 
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Mintyx



Joined: 10 Nov 2009
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:29 pm    Post subject: Failure to Boot Reply with quote

Hi.
Returning home after a hard day I found my PC curiously off - it's usually on most of the time. After a brief spell of puzzlement I turned the machine on to find it wouldn't work. The fans span, the HDD made noises but nothing came on the screen.
On further investigation in the bowels of the machine I found the CPU was lazily attempting to spin but just giving some sort of half hearted mockery of a spin before giving up. Cutting all power to the machine did nothing and it would just do the same thing.
I then removed a RAM stick and lo and behold the machine came on. Still puzzled I inserted the stick back in and turned it on. It wouldn't work so I removed a different stick. Each time, no matter which RAM stick I removed the machine would come on. Placing them all back in caused the CPU fan to continue it's sloth like performance.
So, I proceeded to get the PC up and running with only 3 sticks. It loaded to the inevitable "Something bad happened and I didn't shut down properly" screen and upon choosing either "start normally" or "use last settings that worked" the pc blue screened and dumped me back to the boot up screen. After the 6th or 7th attempt it finally loaded albeit hesitantly and here I am.

Any thoughts?
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SoftStag



Joined: 05 Feb 2006
Posts: 2049
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mintyx, welcome to the forums.

It sounds like there is some kind of hardware fault here. The most likely culprits are RAM, PSU or motherboard. Alternatively, there could just be something a little loose inside.

First thing to check is that everything is seated correctly in it's sockets - components and cables. Try just using 2 sticks of RAM, try all sticks in all combinations. If you have access to another PSU, try this.

You mention that you go a BSOD - can you give us the error that this has?
_________________
"Microsoft programs are generally bug-free. If you visit the Microsoft hotline, you'll literally have to wait weeks if not months until someone calls in with a bug in one of our programs. 99.99% of calls turn out to be user mistakes. I know not a single less irrelevant reason for an update than bugfixes. The reasons for updates are to present more new features."
-- Bill Gates, on code stability, from Focus Magazine
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Mintyx



Joined: 10 Nov 2009
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The BSOD have stopped now and the PC is working normally (I never had chance to look at the BSOD) just with three (out of four) sticks of RAM. Note whichever stick I remove fixes the problem. Could it be a mobo problem in that case? My first thought was the PSU but everything seems to be firing up properly - all HDDs, all fans (except the CPU fan), USB connections and so on.
I'm going to try resetting the Bios to default settings to see if that helps then try it with four sticks of RAM again.
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SoftStag



Joined: 05 Feb 2006
Posts: 2049
Location: UK

PostPosted: Wed Nov 11, 2009 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It could be one of those things you never get to the bottom of! My money would be on the PSU, although I have no idea what PSU you have! Generally, the more stressed a PSU is, the more likely you are to get voltages outside the required range. This can lead to components in the PC to misbehave, potentially giving the problems you had.

Another thing that could have caused it is fluctuations in the mains voltage leading to the PSU not being able to output the correct voltages.

See how you get on and let us know.
_________________
"Microsoft programs are generally bug-free. If you visit the Microsoft hotline, you'll literally have to wait weeks if not months until someone calls in with a bug in one of our programs. 99.99% of calls turn out to be user mistakes. I know not a single less irrelevant reason for an update than bugfixes. The reasons for updates are to present more new features."
-- Bill Gates, on code stability, from Focus Magazine
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