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28 Nov 2011  
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

When a new build will not start we do a test to determine what component is causing the problem.

Basic diagnostic procedure is to uninstall the entire build and start over. (Some people do this with the motherboard out of the case by placing it on an anti-static surface. This eliminates the possibility that there is a short circuit between the motherboard and the case through the connection posts. A post in the wrong location or a sloppy job will do this).

The Test

(power off, power cord unplugged):
  • Disconnect everything externally connected except the mouse and keyboard (printers, USB devices). If you are not using a wired mouse and keyboard see if you can borrow one.
  • Disconnect the power and data cables from all the drives inside the computer (Hard drives, DVD/CD drives).
  • Remove all the cards installed in the PCI slots including the video card. (be careful handling them and place them on a non conductive surface while testing).
  • Remove all the RAM sticks (same rules as above).
Now connect the power cord and turn the PC on.
  • The motherboard should start beeping. You should get a beep code that tells you there is no memory. This is good, it means the processor is functioning and the motherboard is good so far.
  • Now add one stick of memory in Slot A1 and power on. More beeping: "no video card" beep code. This is good.
  • Then add the video card and connect it to the monitor. You should get no beeping and you should see the BIOS screens, ending with the message that there is no boot device.
  • If you get no video then switch the one memory stick installed for another one and test.
  • If you do get video then start adding components back, one at a time, until the system fails to boot. The last component you added is then the problem component.
Let us know what you find.

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