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Motherboard, Hdd or something else fried???


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#1 Macha

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Posted 11 September 2009 - 06:57 PM

Hello guys,

This is my 1st post in the forum.

A couple of hours ago, the local Electric Co. was replacing meters on our property and the power surged 2 times in a as many minutes, causing my wonderfully restored and updated computer to no longer indicate visual evidence of booting.

I have all equipment attached to a surge protector with a lifetime guarantee of replacement of faulty parts and equipment attached to it. (up to $75,000) Of course there's the small print limitations... eeeks! I have all my original receipts, equipment and parts on hand if it's worth pursuing the warranty. Naturally, shipping a tower at my expense to collect is not what I'd prefer to do. Piece parts, yes.

Anyway, we tested the monitor on the laptop and is fine!!!! When monitor is disconnected from Desktop a colorful screen appears informing us no monitor or signal is present???

Lights on the back of the system illuminate and on hard shutdown, lights are out.

After turning power on again, fan appears operational... feel air suction on the tower back. All 3 lights on the keyboard flash on once, though they don't cycle as they did before.

Any idea if my motherboard, hdd or something else was fried or could it simply be a burnt battery??? (LOL... wishful thinking there)

Am over here gulping air this is a fixable situation.

Thanks for your expertise,

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#2 pclimer

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Posted 11 September 2009 - 11:45 PM

It could have just messed up the power supply, what brand power supply do you have?

#3 Macha

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Posted 12 September 2009 - 07:06 PM

Hi PC, :flowers:

Thank you so much for responding. I believe it's a Dell? Came factory installed in my Dimension 4400. Manual says it's a: 250 W DC, 534 BTU, 90 to 135 V @ 50/60 Hz; 180 to256 V @ 50/60 Hz and backup battery is a 3-V CR2032 coin cell.

I located this thread which prompted me to pop the battery and replace it with a new one. What do you know... it booted on power up and got the Dell internal set up screen. It says CMOS low battery. Do I need to reset something or just power down and press <DEL> immediately and see if Windows will start? Or does this tell us Power supply is bad?

Any ideas?

Again, thank you ever so much for all your input!!! :thumbsup:

#4 pclimer

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Posted 14 September 2009 - 03:55 PM

You can replace the CMOS battery, it is located somewhere around the bottom of the board.

On this picture its between the black AGP and white PCI card slots.
I'm not sure if yours is in the same location, but it should be in this general area.
Posted Image


The battery itself is about the size of a quarter, and can be bought at walmart in the watch section.
You will have to use the old one from the board to get the correct battery number and what not.


Also, does it let you boot into windows, or is it stuck in the post screen?

#5 Macha

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Posted 15 September 2009 - 09:50 AM

Hi PC,

Thank you again for your response. :thumbsup:

You can replace the CMOS battery, it is located somewhere around the bottom of the board. ... Also, does it let you boot into windows, or is it stuck in the post screen?


I replaced the CMOS battery and on power up, there's a single beep and gray Dell set up screen comes up. Tried setting system defaults and setting boot priority to HD 1st and PCI/AGP card 2nd. Won't save changes yet.

Saving these settings after upgrading RAM, replacing HD, Graphics card and reinstalling Win XP last year about drove me bonkers. :trumpet:

Currently log file lists Pre-Boot errors: CMOS Battery failure and Keyboard not functional. :inlove:

According to the manual's Beep Codes:

"POST Beep Codes

If the monitor cannot display errors or problems, during POST the computer might emit a series of beeps, or beep code, that identifies the problem. The POST beep codes are listed below.

Possible Cause Corrective Action

1 Beep A memory refresh failure occurred. Re-seat the memory modules."



It's very curious as the 2 sticks of RAM show up installed along with new HD & GR. Card. What do I know, will re-seat Bat. & Mem. and cross my fingers!! :flowers:

Edited by Macha, 15 September 2009 - 10:20 AM.


#6 Macha

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 04:19 PM

Eureka... problem solved. :thumbsup:

CMOS was not loading defaults because it was complaining about Date & time setting. Once changed, everything reset and Windows booted up with all my previous settings etc. !!!!!

Thank you ever so much for all your help! :flowers:

Edited by Macha, 17 September 2009 - 04:23 PM.





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