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Final Fantasy Society Forums  >  Community Discussion  >  The Dork Squad

Another one bites the dust...



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0
 05.16.2013 8:24pm
Thread Creator

kirbenvost
Give Life Back To Music



So after a good long while of horrible performance, our PC seems to have gone kaput. It powers on and I can hear the fans and hard drives running, but it never boots up. The monitor gets no signal.  Pretty sure it's not the graphics, it's onboard and we haven't had any other display issues. So is it more likely the processor or the C drive that's gone south? I suppose there's one way to find out, procure another hard drive and get Windows on it.

And also, if we have a functioning laptop, is there an easy way to connect it so we can access our stuff?  Or would I basically have to remove and connect the drives to the laptop with an enclosure or something?




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0
 05.17.2013 2:43am


Southern Comfort
silently judging all of you



If you're not even getting to POST, then it's probably not the hard drive.  Initializing the HDD and booting to Windows doesn't begin until after POST is through.

Quick question: if you leave it sit for a while (2-3 minutes), do the hard drives spin up and sound like they're working?  By that I mean can you hear the static-y noise like the OS is accessing them? (I've always called that noise "grinding peanuts")

If yes: congratulations, your computer still mostly works, and it is indeed a failure of your graphics subsystem.

If no:  start by swapping the PSU for a known good one.  Dying PSU's tend to do things like not signal PWR_OK to the motherboard, and that will keep it from starting.  If that doesn't help, you can do things like reseat memory and CPU, but frankly the prognosis is not good.

Re: HDD:  buying a cheap enclosure is the best option.  Should be cable-compatible with the laptop, but the laptop only has one connection, and a 3.5" HDD out of a desktop isn't going to fit in the 2.5" laptop slot.




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0
 05.17.2013 6:48pm
Thread Creator

kirbenvost
Give Life Back To Music



Thanks for the suggestions.

Yeah, I knew a desktop hard drive wouldn't fit in a laptop, but I was hoping I could somehow connect it without needing to buy an enclosure.

Got it sorted out anyway, we luckily had the old carcass of our last computer still in storage so I put the hard drives in there.  Once I sorted out the boot order it started up just fine.  The onboard sound doesn't seem to be working but hopefully it just needs the correct drivers.  Windows can't seem to find them on the internet, maybe because it's like 10 years old.  Hilariously though, I think this older one has a better processor than the one we replaced it with.  Thinking of getting more memory just to help it along a little.  Apparently we have only 768 MB...

As for the dead one... pretty sure we burnt out the processor.  It looked like it got pretty hot in there and it's probably my fault, I neglected to reapply thermal paste the last time I cleaned it out.  It died a slow, painful death.  Painful mostly to us.  Slowest POS I've ever had to use. lol




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0
 05.19.2013 12:21pm


Som
Genitals are Funny



Very good chance i could be wrong about this but yeah, i read somewhere that any type of CPU will die if it has no thermal paste and cooler on it.




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0
 05.19.2013 5:48pm


Southern Comfort
silently judging all of you



Actually, Intel processors are pretty likely to survive a lack of thermal compound, albeit with horrible throttling - for a while, at least.

I was having a string of BSODs on mine lately, and I couldn't figure them out because every one happened for a different reason.  Turns out, the thermal compound had dried into a powder and quit working.  One quick reapplication, and everything is back to normal.




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0
 05.21.2013 8:26pm
Thread Creator

kirbenvost
Give Life Back To Music



Huh.  That's surprising.  That was probably the cause but I very much doubt that I could revive it by just putting some more on there.

In other news, our laptop died too, I think it had a hang up during an update and messed up the boot sector (or something).  Made a USB boot stick, fixed the errors, finished the updates, and good as new!  I like when it doesn't take hours to figure this shit out.

Also bonus, I put the visual settings on optimization for best performance and it's like 10 times faster now.   Now Firefox doesn't bog down horribly all the time.  For now.




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0
 05.21.2013 11:07pm


Southern Comfort
silently judging all of you



Toms Hardware did a test back in the day between Pentium 3's, Pentium 4's and Athlon XPs, they pulled the heat sink off while the PC was running just to see what would happen.  The P3 locked hard, but was fine after reinstalling the heat sink and rebooting.  The P4 soft locked, but resumed as soon as the heat sink was reinstalled.  The Athlon XP lit on fire.




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0
 05.22.2013 2:20am
Thread Creator

kirbenvost
Give Life Back To Music



Holy shit.  That's...scary.  I'm pretty sure we weren't running an Athlon...but...damn.




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0
 05.22.2013 6:48am
 (Edited on 05.22.2013 at 6:54am)

Southern Comfort
silently judging all of you



I'm running an Athlon X2 at the moment, so it's something AMD probably fixed over the years.

e: this was back in 2001, so probably a second gen Athlon, not an Athlon XP.




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0
 05.22.2013 11:03am


Arckanghel
Pirate.



Southern Comfort said:

Toms Hardware did a test back in the day between Pentium 3's, Pentium 4's and Athlon XPs, they pulled the heat sink off while the PC was running just to see what would happen.  The P3 locked hard, but was fine after reinstalling the heat sink and rebooting.  The P4 soft locked, but resumed as soon as the heat sink was reinstalled.  The Athlon XP lit on fire.

I remember this very well. I was working for a parts supplier and manufacturer at the time and we used to get back quite a few fried Athlons due to people trying to overclock, cool them in exotic fashion or not pulling the sticker off the bottom of their new heatsink. It was also the days when Athlons had the processor cores exposed and people used to crack chunks out of them regularly when putting the heatsinks on.




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0
 05.22.2013 11:52pm


Southern Comfort
silently judging all of you



Cracked many an Athlon core myself.  But then, I also overclocked a Duron 600 to 1100 mHz, and ran it that way for years, so there's that.




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0
 05.28.2013 9:59pm
Thread Creator

kirbenvost
Give Life Back To Music



Tales of success were premature. I went to install the DVD burner and thought I'd add in front USB & audio at the same time. You know, get them all done at once so I don't have to muck around in there anymore.

There was something weird, there were jumpers on the front audio connector on the motherboard. Don't know what they were for, can't remember where they're supposed to go, but I still have them.

Anyway, so now it won't start. Press the power button, nothing happens at all. No sound, no fans spinning, no beeps, NOTHING. It's plugged in and there's a light on the back of the power supply so I know it's got power, but nothing else. I've checked all the connections and everything seems to be fine. I can't figure it out. My theories are that the power switch doesn't work, the power supply isn't outputting, or the motherboard is fried. I really hope it's not the latter.

Any ideas? I started by disconnecting everything I had connected but that didn't seem to help. I have a feeling it has to do with those jumpers but if it's a front audio connector I don't see why connecting front audio should cause a problem like this.




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0
 05.29.2013 12:39am


Southern Comfort
silently judging all of you



Replace the jumpers, look up a motherboard manual if you must.  Then unplug the power switch and bridge the two pins with something metal, see if it boots.  If that fails, unplug the power supply from everything, and bridge the green wire on the ATX20V connector (the big one that plugs into the motherboard) to a black one, see if the fan in the PSU spins up.




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0
 05.29.2013 8:17pm
Thread Creator

kirbenvost
Give Life Back To Music



Dang, too bad I didn't see your response last night... I did figure out where to put those jumpers but now I can't find one of them. And I also determined it wasn't the power supply or power switch because I substituted other ones in and it still wouldn't turn on.  So I basically surmised it must be the motherboard. :(

Bizarrely, or perhaps like you said it would, I tried the other board I couldn't get to start originally and now it works again.  Who knows how long it will stay working, but at least I have time to get the imperitave stuff onto my USB backup drive so we can use it on the laptop.

Thanks for your help thus far, though.




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0
 06.01.2013 8:26am


Arckanghel
Pirate.



Southern Comfort said:

Cracked many an Athlon core myself.  But then, I also overclocked a Duron 600 to 1100 mHz, and ran it that way for years, so there's that.

It definitely wasn't hard to do at all. I worried every damn time I touched one even though I was skilled at dealing with them.

On topic, SoCo has, as is quite usual, beat me to the regular and constructive tech support replies.




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