Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

Dell Desktop PC with XP won't start anymore after "resting" for 1 & 1/2 years..


  • Please log in to reply
10 replies to this topic

#1 siro

siro

  • Members
  • 6 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:09:16 PM

Posted 02 October 2017 - 05:16 PM

I think the OS is XP Home with SP3.  Once Microsoft support for XP ended, I used it just for old games, and it worked fine, but now when I turn it on, all I get on the monitor is

RV370 P/N 113-A62801-106 BIOS

This is a computer that I bought from Dell, but it's been so long that I can't find the disks that came with it.

 

What I have tried:

Replaced the internal battery, but nothing changed; and although I was getting in over my head, I burned XP_rec_con.iso to a CD and tried to start with it in the drive, but got the same result as before.  Most likely BIOS is not set up to boot first from the CD drive.  Additionally, although I have tried two different keyboards--one, the one I am using to write this, I am unable to type anything that will show up on the screen. I have plugged the keyboards into two different USB ports, one on the front and one on the back of the computer.

 

My question is: Whether the message I am getting on the monitor indicates what may be wrong and how serious that might be. Is it likely that even a visit to a PC repair shop would be useless?  (I realize that there may be no definitive answer to that question and will just give up if necessary.)  I would just like to be able to play the last Myst game and a couple of other old ones that won't run in compatible mode on my present Dell Inspiron 660s desktop running Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit). 



BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 JohnC_21

JohnC_21

  • Members
  • 23,199 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:12:16 AM

Posted 02 October 2017 - 05:23 PM

After you replaced the battery did you reset your BIOS to default? Is the hard drive detected in BIOS? Tapping F12 at boot will give you the option to do System Diagnostics and also select your boot device.

 

Do a powercycle. Remove the power cord and hold the power button down for 30 seconds. Replace the power cord and reboot.


Edited by JohnC_21, 02 October 2017 - 05:23 PM.


#3 siro

siro
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 6 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:09:16 PM

Posted 02 October 2017 - 10:21 PM

Thank you, John C.

Unfortunately, when turning the computer on, I just can't get to the BIOS in order to reset it to default.  Was there something I should have done at the time of replacing the battery that would have reset the BIOS? Battery replacing is something I had never done before.

 

I followed your directions to keep tapping F12 at boot, but all that came up was the same old "RV370 P/N 113-A62801-106 BIOS" that I've been getting since this problem began.  Powercycling also had no results.  Since the command prompt comes up right under that, but I am unable to type any command into the prompt, I'm wondering if there is something wrong that has caused a disconnect between the keyboard and the rest of the computer.  I don't think it can be that I jiggled something when changing the battery, because, again, things have been like this since I tried to use the computer a few days ago, that is, since before I opened the case.  Groan.



#4 joseibarra

joseibarra

  • Members
  • 1,153 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Downstairs
  • Local time:12:16 AM

Posted 03 October 2017 - 02:28 AM

What is the Dell Service Tag number?

 

When you power up the system does it beep?

 

Usually one short beep is a good sign, no beeps is a bad sign, other beeps are failure codes so if you hear a series of beeps attempt to describe them...  one short two long, 3 long one short, etc.

 

Performing a Google search on RV370 P/N 113-A62801-106 BIOS reveals some result in the Dell Community where other folks found that careful reseating (remove and replace) of motherboard components like CPU, RAM, one at a time unplugging and replugging any cables that will come off without much resistance...

 

I would reseat the CPU and RAM and see how things look - any beeps now?  You could even power up with no RAM installed and that should definitely give you some beep codes if the CPU is functioning.

 

Before doing any of that handling of internal components you need to unplug the system from the power source then touch a bare metal part of the chassis with your hand to discharge any static electricity you might be carrying around.  Then carefully and one at a time (so you don't get mixed up) remove and replace things.

 

Here is one such topic from the Dell Community:

 

http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/desktop/f/3514/t/18700337

 

You may find other results by Googling your message RV370 P/N 113-A62801-106 BIOS


Edited by joseibarra, 03 October 2017 - 02:30 AM.

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates.


#5 siro

siro
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 6 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:09:16 PM

Posted 04 October 2017 - 12:08 AM

Thank you, Jose.  No, I don't hear any beeps. I'll be careful about the static electricity.  Guess I'll start trying what you said. A long time ago, I bought new RAM for one of our computers and after some sweating, managed to remove things and seat others to get good results, so I suppose I can manage that, but I have never fooled around with a CPU, not even sure if I would recognize it in this computer, so I think I'll start with the RAM.  Following the link you gave, I found that apparently at least 2 people had success when they discovered a faulty memory card.

 

It worked!  I don't know how to thank you enough, Jose.  I was able to get into the BIOS and SETUP to set the time, etc., and get to the desktop, where all my old icons were still in evidence. 

Right now, I have only one memory card in place, in DIMM 2.  Looks like the one that was in DIMM 1 was probably bad.  When I tried to boot with only that one in place, I got 6 beeps, which started with a long one, but I couldn't make out if any of the rest were long. I guess that is irrelevant, now that I have found some bad RAM.

 

The card now in DIMM 2 is 512MB in size.  I don't know how much I can do with only that much RAM, so tomorrow I will try replacing the remaining 2 memory cards. When I bought new RAM long ago, I somehow got the idea that there always had to be 2 cards in one pair of slots, like partners, but since the computer started with only 1 card, I guess I was wrong. Is it only that the two cards in one pair of slots have to be of the same kind or size?

 

I also got a message about installing the PCI memory controller (I may have those letters wrong, but have already turned the PC off for the night) and will have to briefly connect to the Internet to get the driver, or whatever is needed. 

 

I have one more question I hope you can help with.  Just above "Strike F1 to continue or F2 for SETUP," there was the message:

"Alert! Previous fan failure."  Should I assume that I need to get a new fan, or does the word previous somehow hint that now it may be all right? If I have to install a new fan, that is going to be tricky, as I know nothing about them, except that I seem to recall reading that there may be more than one in a PC.  Do you have any advice for me? Are fans sort of generic, or would I have to order one from Dell? I am a self-taught old lady who, besides dealing with memory cards, only has the experience of removing DVD/CD and floppy drives and installing new ones. I love computers; but whenever anything goes wrong, I have to search on line and learn as I go along, so I much appreciate the help I get.  Ought to sleep very soundly tonight!



#6 joseibarra

joseibarra

  • Members
  • 1,153 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Downstairs
  • Local time:12:16 AM

Posted 04 October 2017 - 04:32 AM

Now you are an expert RAM reseater.

 

If on the system you can find the Dell sticker and report the Service Tag number you/we will be able to zero in on more specifics about your system (my very first question).

 

Interpreting the beep codes depends on the Dell model which we don't know.

 

Dell Beep Codes

 

Maybe you don't have to mess with the processor now.

 

Sometimes there might just be a marginal connection with your RAM cards and removing and inserting them a few times might clean up any oxidation on the contacts or some folks report using a pencil eraser on the gold plated DIMM connector will clean them up (could be a wives tale).

 

Your previous fan failure message...

 

Those messages are not coming from Windows - they are coming from the motherboard BIOS and errors and events like that are stored onboard until you fix the problem.

 

A fan could be bad by not working at all or a loose connection where you might unplug and replug the wires a few times to be sure the connection is good.

 

You might also pick up a can of compressed air from the electronics section of a big box store to blow out dust from the system fans and slots.

 

Turning again to Google and the Dell community I read that you may be able to clear those events if the fan is still working:

 

Previous fan failure error is generated from the log in the BIOS screen once your processor fan failed, and will come up every time until the log is cleared - as you are finding out.  A state-side tech was kind enough to help me through it.

When starting up, press F2 and scroll down to the next to the last line - System event log.  Press Enter.  Read it (take notes), clear it, and exit.  Everything should work on the next boot.

 

Depending on your Service Tag you might find some Dell diagnostics you can run on your system to pinpoint RAM or fan failures.

 

Start with this link:

 

http://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/19?c=us&l=en&s=dhs

 

 

[attachment=198523:Untitled.jpg]


Edited by joseibarra, 04 October 2017 - 05:08 AM.

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates.


#7 siro

siro
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 6 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:09:16 PM

Posted 04 October 2017 - 07:36 PM

Expert RAM reseater, lol! Well, I hope to add to that, but I'm happy so long as my computer is working again.

Sorry for not getting the service tag.   I was under the mistaken impression that it was only for getting Dell to repair a computer.  Here it is, belatedly (due to a crisis that required a plumber's visit this morning and sort of spoiled the day): GS3QT91   Now that I know there may be advice at Dell specific to my computer, I'll check the tag out tomorrow and will also follow your suggestions to check what is going on with the fan. 

The PC is Dell XPS400 Media Edition.

I also appreciate the quote about how to clear events that may remain stored in the log even after a problem is resolved. It is good of you to answer me so quickly every time, and I am really grateful.  It's just that these last few days, "life," in various manifestations, has unexpectedly been taking up a lot of time. 



#8 joseibarra

joseibarra

  • Members
  • 1,153 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Downstairs
  • Local time:12:16 AM

Posted 05 October 2017 - 01:42 AM

Good - Dell says your system shipped with two 512MB DIMM memory modules for a total of 1GB RAM:

 

[attachment=198565:Untitled.jpg]

 

The service manual says your system will support up to 4GB RAM:

 

[attachment=198565:Untitled.jpg]

 

If your system only works with one module installed and won't boot at all with both installed it could be that one module is afflicted.

 

If it was me I would make a mark on the suspicious one and then swap them in and out - does the system work with just the suspicious module installed?

 

Reseat them in the slots a few times, clean the contacts on the memory module, blow out the slots with compresses air and hope that the problem is just a poor connection.

 

I ran XP for a very long time with 512MB with no problems and at the time I thought it was adequate.

 

If you want to replace or expand your system memory I would visit this site and see what their System Scanner has to say:

 

http://www.crucial.com/


The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates.


#9 siro

siro
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 6 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:09:16 PM

Posted 05 October 2017 - 03:27 PM

With the module in DIMM1 removed and the module that was next to it replaced in DIMM2,  the computer boots and appears to be working all right, so this morning I went a bit further and replaced the remaining two modules, and everything still seems fine.  For my further enlightenment, when I have time I plan to check out that Dell service tag online and also clean the contacts on the modules and blow out any dust to see if that original bad one will begin to perform again.  The more RAM, the better, right?

 

This morning, after having the CDs for Myst V, End of Ages for years without being able to use them, I am enjoying playing the game.  It's all thanks to you!

 

Later, if I can get online with the XP,  I may get the system scanned at crucial.com, but I suspect that with the old types of games that I favor, my present RAM may well be enough.  For any newer games that will run on Windows 7, or, eventually,  10, I will use my main personal computer, having just kept the old XP to avoid compatibility problems.  But just in case, I will keep the crucial.com link in my bookmarks.



#10 joseibarra

joseibarra

  • Members
  • 1,153 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Downstairs
  • Local time:12:16 AM

Posted 06 October 2017 - 02:02 AM

More RAM is generally good up to the point that your system and OS can use.

 

Your Dell is limited to 4GB and 32-bit Operating Systems can't use more than 4GB.

 

If things are running smoothly now let's put a wrap on this topic for now!


The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates.


#11 siro

siro
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 6 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:09:16 PM

Posted 07 October 2017 - 06:26 PM

Yup, everything is fine.  Thanks for the info re the amount of RAM my system can use;  I knew nothing about such things.  Bye for now.  You've been a great help!






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users