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Computer looses Some Power.....

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Old 09-11-2014, 01:53 PM   #1
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My computer will lose only "some" of the power - I know it is getting a power supply because there is a green light on the mother board when I plug it in. The fans do not power and the power switch does not stay green then when I do get it running - I am not sure what triggers it other than checking all the connections of the connectors inside the tower. I removed the battery (CMOS) battery and put it back in after waiting a little while and it seemed to start the fans up and I was able to power it on and off many times. Then it stopped working again - tried the same thing with the battery and nothing..... I took apart the power supply to make sure I had no wires with bad connections, after putting it back together it started up and ran fine. I was able to download all kinds of windows updates that were missing let it sit over night and it would not power up this morning..... again I removed the CMOS battery and it started back up. When this goes into this fit the power switch does not stay green until the fans start working then all is fine. could the CMOS battery be the cause of my issue? When it comes back on I have to reset the time and date - every time.
Please give me any ideas that you can think of.....
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Old 09-11-2014, 01:55 PM   #2
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Operating system for this PC is Windows 7 Pro!
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Old 09-12-2014, 06:40 AM   #3
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Sadly, you told us ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about your computer - except W7 Pro as an afterthought.

Instead of pulling and replacing the same CMOS battery, I recommend you unplug the computer from the wall (which I really hope you have been doing EVERY time!), pull the battery and take it to your local store battery/camera/watch counter and buy a new battery. It should be a CR2032. Most counters will recycle your old battery.

Then when you get home, insure the case interior, vents, heatsinks, and fans are clean of heat trapping dust. Do NOT touch the new battery with your bare fingers as skin oils promote corrosion and attract dust. I put a clean cotton (not synthetics as they generate too much electrostatic potentials) sock over my hand. Then, touch bare metal of the case interior BEFORE reaching in (which again, I really hope you have been doing EVERY time!) to discharge any static in your body, and while observing proper polarity, insert the new battery.

Then, inspect to ensure all cable connection are tight and secure, connect power and boot directly into the BIOS Setup Menu. Set your date and time, verify drives are recognized and in the correct boot order, then "Save" and Exit the BIOS Setup Menu to boot properly.

If still having problems, I would swap in a known good power supply. Then let us know what's happening.

Note these are common heat symptoms too - except for not booting first thing in the morning - but I am ASSUMMING your CPU fan starts to spin as soon as you apply power.
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Old 09-12-2014, 01:30 PM   #4
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I am sorry that I told you nothing.... This is a HP Compaq 8100 Elite computer tower with windows 7 pro operating system.
I HAVE replaced the battery and did not touch it with my hands, I do it the same way as you do - holding it with a cloth and I touch the bare metal first then install. I also have my wrist band on while I am working on this PC.
What I have found since I posted my problem is that if I get it going after I set the time and date (only if I have removed the battery I have to reset these) I can power the pc on and off as many times as I want to BUT.... If I disconnect the power cord from the back of the tower it will not power up. I know it is getting power because the green light on the motherboard is lit but I check all my connections and remove the battery for about ten minutes, reinstall it and it will start back up. I have moved the PC tower all around while it is on to see if it is a loose connection but it stays on and runs great until I power it off and remove the power cord!
Is this the was a power pack could act if it was bad? I seem to have narrowed it down to the power pack but not 100% sure the problem is inside it because I wiggle all the wires going into and coming out of the power unit and it does not flicker or shut down from this.
Can I swap ANY power supply pack from another tower that I know is ok or does it have to be matched up to the serial number of this tower?

NOTE: When this does not come on NONE of the fans are running and the power switch does not stay green! The fans all come on when the PC does start up and are quiet, the switch then lights green also.

Thank you for your help with this.
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Old 09-13-2014, 06:47 AM   #5
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The Mobo LED only indicates the Mobo is receiving power. It does not determine the PC is receiving adequate power to boot.
How old is the unit?
Your PC is a "small form factor" so only the PSU has to be small form also to physically fit.



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Old 09-13-2014, 08:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Your PC is a "small form factor" so only the PSU has to be small form also to physically fit.
To "mount" the supply in the case, this is correct. But you can temporarily connect a standard sized ATX PSU - if VERY careful - to test.
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Old 09-15-2014, 06:35 AM   #7
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I believe the PC is only about 3 years old. When it is running on all the power it is a very good machine so I really do want to try to repair the issue. I will get a PSU that fits and see if it takes care of the issue.

Thanks
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Old 09-19-2014, 06:09 AM   #8
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Wise choice and please post back with results.



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Old 09-19-2014, 01:13 PM   #9
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I replaced the PSU with the same part number and made sure it was a new one and not refurbished - replaced the unit and when I turned the PC on the fans came on (as they should) and the PC stayed on. I did some online downloads, did a restart and shut down from the start button to be sure it would power back on after being logged off and each time (about 8 times) the PC did start each time and runs great when running.

I wanted to be sure the issue was 100% fixed so I powered it off from the start button and when it was completely turned off I unplugged the power cord from the back then plugged it right back in (never moving the PC) and hit the power button and NOTHING!

This is the same issue that I was having before I replaced the CPU!

I am really confused at this point what unplugging and plugging the power source back in would change. I have even replaced the power cord with a new cord to be sure it was not with the power cord.

Any idea what I would be dealing with?
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Old 09-19-2014, 01:56 PM   #10
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why did you unplug the power cord?

did you switch the power supply off before doing so? if not you could have caused a surge.
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Old 09-19-2014, 02:14 PM   #11
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To see if the issue was repaired! When I unplug the power source and bring the PC downstairs it does not work... That is when I discovered that there was an issue with the power source.
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Old 09-19-2014, 02:16 PM   #12
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I can move the tower all over the place while plugged in trying to get it to stop - like a loose wire would but it stays running with no hiccups at all. Unplug it and plug it back in and it does not power back up!
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Old 09-19-2014, 02:26 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dipgmc View Post
To see if the issue was repaired! When I unplug the power source and bring the PC downstairs it does not work... That is when I discovered that there was an issue with the power source.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dipgmc View Post
I can move the tower all over the place while plugged in trying to get it to stop - like a loose wire would but it stays running with no hiccups at all. Unplug it and plug it back in and it does not power back up!
yes but you didn't answer my question are you switching the power supply off at the back before removing the cord?

if you are not you could be creating a surge which is causing damage
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Old 09-20-2014, 07:19 AM   #14
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Does this PSU even have a master power switch?

There is NO industry standard requiring PSUs have a master power switch on the back. Many don't - especially budget, generic, off-brand supplies, and many older name-brand supplies too.

But there IS the ATX Form Factor Standard that requires +5Vsb Standby voltages be applied across multiple points on the motherboard whenever the PSU is plugged into the wall - even when the computer is turned off (and IF optionally equipped, that master switch is set to on). If no switch, the +5Vsb is present so unplugging is the only way to remove it. And removing that +5V MUST be done BEFORE messing with RAM or near other sensitive devices inside the computer (not forgetting, I hope, to touch bare metal of the case interior before reaching in to discharge static in your body - also essential to prevent ESD destruction).

I would be more worried about a surge when "connecting" the cord rather than disconnecting. In any case, unless your hand is really shaky, or the cord's or PSU's connector is damaged, a surge here is unlikely - especially since the PSU should be in a off state at this point - with no signal (yet) from the motherboard to power up.

Quote:
I can move the tower all over the place while plugged in trying to get it to stop
I would caution against doing this. PC hard drives are not meant to be moved about during operation. A minor slip or knock could result in the drive's R/W heads crashing into the platters, cutting Grand Canyon size (microscopically speaking) gouges through your data and critical system files.

Instead, open the side panel, touch bare metal of the interior to discharge static, then carefully wiggle wires and connectors.

Quote:
I wanted to be sure the issue was 100% fixed so I powered it off from the start button and when it was completely turned off I unplugged the power cord from the back then plugged it right back in (never moving the PC) and hit the power button and NOTHING!

This is the same issue that I was having before I replaced the CPU!

I am really confused at this point what unplugging and plugging the power source back in would change.
Most BIOS Setup Menus provide options to set how the front panel power button works. Make sure that did not change to something odd - like requiring you to press and hold for 4 seconds.

The new CMOS battery "should" maintain the changes to the BIOS defaults in the CMOS memory module when the computer is off and unplugged - IF the battery and the circuit are working properly. You said you replaced the CMOS battery - I am assuming with a brand new battery. Since that did not fix this, and since you have tried more than one PSU, I suspect, and am afraid your motherboard is failing. :(
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Old 09-22-2014, 02:16 PM   #15
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After reading your reply - thinking it is the motherboard I decided to see if I was missing anything that I had not shared with you.... I have proven (to myself) that if I run it with the CMOS battery (new battery) in then I can turn it off the right way (start then shut down) or restart from the start button and it restarts every time UNTIL I unplug the power cord - plug it back in and it will not start. I have discovered that after I plug it in when it is not starting if I remove the CMOS battery it will start up! So I went further and found that if I power it down without the battery in and unplug the power cord... then plug the power cord back in - it starts right up with the switch in the front as it is supposed to! Once I put the battery back in, do the same steps - it will not start back up after the power cord has been removed until I remove the battery!

When I said I moved the PC tower around... I did it gently as I didn't want to make things worse I was just looking for a loose wire.

Do you still think it is the motherboard where I can run it the way it should without the CMOS battery in?
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Old 09-23-2014, 12:05 AM   #16
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you cant run the mobo without a cmos battery. you can pick news ones up for a couple dollars or a couple of pounds.

There is a test to see if your motherboard is damaged but its not 100% but its a good indication.

If your motherboard has a speaker i.e it beeps when you turn the system on. Remove all of the RAM and power it up, if you dont hear a series of beeps to say there isn't any RAM installed then thats a good idication your motherboard is damaged.
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Old 09-23-2014, 07:17 AM   #17
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I have already replaced the cmos battery with a new one and this PC will run without the battery in. I can power it up, set the time & date and run the PC as I normally do. The other thing that I think is kind of strange is: I had to install a new port for the internet connection (CAT5) because the one that is original stopped working (this is why it is upstairs so I could replace it - this is when I discovered that when the PC is unplugged it does not restart... I brought it back downstairs after it was repaired and when I plugged it in hit the power button there was nothing!) the strange thing is that the light that normally means you are connected to the internet (green light) is always on with nothing plugged into the port! I have checked other PC's to verify that when there is nothing plugged in this port there is no light on.

So between the PC running with no cmos battery and the green light always on I am really baffled..... I will remove the RAM and see if it beeps then advise you on what happens.
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Old 09-23-2014, 07:29 AM   #18
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running the pc without the cmos battery will make any changes the BIOS has get lost as all it does is remember the info. Its not a good idea to do so because if the time and date get lost then things can get screwed.

The light for the internet can stay green if you have the ports set to always be on (check internet connections in windows) when there is a cable connected, It could also be that your internet adapter (motherboard) is defective if it is green when no cable connected.
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Old 09-23-2014, 07:52 AM   #19
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You can run a motherboard without a battery inserted but for the reasons noted, it is not a good idea.

Without the battery, the data (user changes to the BIOS defaults) saved in the CMOS memory module is lost and the BIOS is simply reset. And you can boot a motherboard when the BIOS is reset.

That said, this is NOT a good solution. If the CMOS information is constantly being reset, that means the system date and time is constantly being reset too. That can wreck havoc on critical operating system files and user files like Word documents and more.

Since you already replaced the battery, and I assume you then set date and time in the BIOS Setup Menu, then hit Save and Exit, this sounds like your motherboard is failing. While very rare, it is possible your new battery is bad too and you might try another just be sure, since they are no expensive.

I agree with checking for beeps, but I see no reason to risk ESD damage by removing your RAM. Just reboot. If your system has a system speaker, it will produce one short beep to indicate a successful POST (power on self test). If you get more than one beep, something else is wrong. If you never get beeps, it probably means your motherboard does not have an integrated speaker, your case does not have a system speaker, or if the case does it may be not connected to the system speaker pins on the motherboard's "case front panel header".

So, when all is good, did you get a single beep when booting?

Also, since you now mention Ethernet ports, a faulty Ethernet port or cable connector can short out an entire network! Note those RJ-45 cable connectors are flimsy, and not robust at all. They can only take so many trip-overs and yanks before damage occurs. Consider replacing your cables, changing router ports, and if necessary, adding a new Ethernet connection to the computer.

FTR, I gave up buying factory made Ethernet cables a long time ago. The fancy colors and molded connectors look pretty, but looks don't make good mechanical connections - essential for good electrical connections. So I bought my own bulk cable, connectors and crimper, then wired my house and made all my own cables (to the proper length).

I also wasted money on two cheap crimpers. Learn from my mistake and "invest" in a quality crimper from the start. It takes some practice and good light to make a cable, but worth it. Having a decent cable tester is essential for anyone who troubleshoot Ethernet networks.
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Old 09-23-2014, 08:15 AM   #20
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I also have my own cable which is 10 meters long and crimped it myself (I always use a hardwired connection) it cost me £5 which is about $8.19 a current exchange rate and it has never let me down and is far superior in my opinion to any cable you would buy from a store that would charge a lot for it.
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