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Windows 7: Computer doesn't POST occasionally

06 Dec 2012   #1
Deception

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Computer doesn't get passed Motherboard Screen occasionally

Occasionally when I boot up my computer, it doesn't get past the MOBO screen and POST, after I press the reset button once, it usually works. I don't think I have had to press it twice. But like I said, this doesn't happen often. USUALLY it happens when I turn on my computer after it is shutdown for an hour or two (or overnight).

I don't know what is causing it to hold up but it's quite aggravating.

If anyone has anything to say/suggest let me know.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
07 Dec 2012   #2
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

I'm not sure I understand. Could you clarify?

POST is the Power On Self Test. It happens first. The system will normally beep once if POST is successful.

Then the BIOS or UEFI loads and runs it's routine. (which do you normally have?)

Then the operating system is started ("Starting Windows").

Where in this process does it freeze?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Dec 2012   #3
Deception

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Okay let me clarify, guess I didn't know the terms. It POSTs everytime regardless. It gets stuck on the Motherboard Screen if it does.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

07 Dec 2012   #4
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

OK. When the the system freezes during the BIOS routine it normally points to hardware. Some component of the system is failing to a point that the BIOS quits.

The components that can fail at that level are all of them: power supply, motherboard, CPU, RAM, Graphics, connected internal drives, connected external devices.

Your first step should be to check every connection, and re-seat all devices.
  • Then, check the 3v battery on the motherboard.
  • If you have been overclocking or have recently made any changes to the BIOS settings you should perform a ClearCMOS (CLRTC).
  • Then you want to simplify the system and do a no boot diagnostic:

The Test (power off, power cord unplugged):
  • Disconnect everything externally connected except the mouse and keyboard (printers, USB devices, etc). If you are not using a wired mouse and keyboard see if you can borrow one. The wireless device is just another component you have to deal with.
  • Disconnect the power and data cables from all the drives inside the computer (Hard drives, DVD/CD drives, etc).
  • Remove all the cards installed in the expansion slots (PCI/PCI-e) 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 start 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.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Dec 2012   #5
Deception

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TVeblen View Post
OK. When the the system freezes during the BIOS routine it normally points to hardware. Some component of the system is failing to a point that the BIOS quits.

The components that can fail at that level are all of them: power supply, motherboard, CPU, RAM, Graphics, connected internal drives, connected external devices.

Your first step should be to check every connection, and re-seat all devices.
  • Then, check the 3v battery on the motherboard.
  • If you have been overclocking or have recently made any changes to the BIOS settings you should perform a ClearCMOS (CLRTC).
  • Then you want to simplify the system and do a no boot diagnostic:

The Test (power off, power cord unplugged):
  • Disconnect everything externally connected except the mouse and keyboard (printers, USB devices, etc). If you are not using a wired mouse and keyboard see if you can borrow one. The wireless device is just another component you have to deal with.
  • Disconnect the power and data cables from all the drives inside the computer (Hard drives, DVD/CD drives, etc).
  • Remove all the cards installed in the expansion slots (PCI/PCI-e) 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 start 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.
The problem with this test is that it my issue rarely happens. I did check my 3v battery and it is fine, 3.18volts still. << this reset my bios

EDIT: Sorry about the slow response, i'm in college and it's finals week here so i've been busy with studying, but yes I did read your response and have been thinking about it. I just feel like this won't really do much because of the fact that my issue is so random/rare.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Dec 2012   #6
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Then I suggest trying to limp along until finals are over. When you are off on winter break you could use that time to try and track down the hardware fault.

We will still be here.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2012   #7
Deception

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TVeblen View Post
Then I suggest trying to limp along until finals are over. When you are off on winter break you could use that time to try and track down the hardware fault.

We will still be here.
Why would a hardware fault be so random though? That's what I don't understand. I feel like if it was hardware then why wouldn't it happen everytime... and all of this hard is <6months old except for my PSU
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2012   #8
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Why would a hardware fault be so random though?
Because hardware can fault without failing. If the problem device actually failed the PC would not work. Total failure is easier to diagnose than partial failure and faults.
At the BIOS level all the machine is doing is waking up and counting it's components. It queries the component, the component responds, it checks the component against the list it keeps, and moves on to the other components.
If the component does not communicated as expected the system will retry a few times before it moves on. Sometimes it will get hung up at this point, sometimes it will resolve the conflict. Sometimes the component doesn't communicated on the first try, but does on the second or third.

and all of this hard is <6months old
There are 2 points in the life of hardware that it is MOST likely to fail: when it is very new, and when it is very old.

except for my PSU
And that is the component that is most often the prime suspect in randomly occurring faults like yours. "Dirty" power at startup is a very common cause of hardware faulting the BIOS check.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2012   #9
Deception

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TVeblen View Post
Why would a hardware fault be so random though?
Because hardware can fault without failing. If the problem device actually failed the PC would not work. Total failure is easier to diagnose than partial failure and faults.
At the BIOS level all the machine is doing is waking up and counting it's components. It queries the component, the component responds, it checks the component against the list it keeps, and moves on to the other components.
If the component does not communicated as expected the system will retry a few times before it moves on. Sometimes it will get hung up at this point, sometimes it will resolve the conflict. Sometimes the component doesn't communicated on the first try, but does on the second or third.

and all of this hard is <6months old
There are 2 points in the life of hardware that it is MOST likely to fail: when it is very new, and when it is very old.

except for my PSU
And that is the component that is most often the prime suspect in randomly occurring faults like yours. "Dirty" power at startup is a very common cause of hardware faulting the BIOS check.
Do you think I should go about checking the PSU first before trying to determine if it is another component within my computer? (Only reason asking this is because, yes mine is old/potentially not enough Power for my build)

Edit: Just something else to note: I do get Memory Management Bluescreens when I put too much stress on my computer while gaming/streaming. (RAM or motherboard slots are not bad, memtested multiple times). I think this is from my RAM not getting enough Power. This doesn't happen often, only when i'm doing A LOT
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Dec 2012   #10
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Absolutely! Do you have a friend who will let you borrow a newer, larger PS to put in your PC temporarily to test?

And you are correct too about poor power and RAM issues.

On the other hand, considering that is a really nice system you have there, it's sort of a crime to be powering that with anything other than a nice new PS. Just sayin'
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Computer doesn't POST occasionally




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