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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I turned on computer and walked out of the room for a minute, and heard what I thought was a backup warning sound from a truck. No, it was my motherboard freaking out. I quickly restarted without paying much attention to the beep patterns...and now learn that the beeps convey messages. I have been discussing this on Craigslist computer forum, and someone posted what the sounds meant, and I suppose it was power supply because of the steady short beeps. Someone else said, NO, because I was able to view the screen, it wasn't power supply. (OH, I have tried using keyboard directly to usb and through the KVM, with no difference.)

Anyway, I got through the ABIT ID screen and into the copyright basic info dos looking screen, where normally you'd hit F1 or delete or otherwise try to get into setup or Safe mode. But nothing happens, no key I hit makes me go farther. (I have not tried Escape key, and will try that in a moment.)
Oh, I am on KVM, so can easily go between machines.

So far, I have checked the RAM to make sure they were snug, have rebooted and restarted numerous times. unplugged the computer. Removed the CMOS battery for a short time and unplugged, then reinstalled and plugged it in. Nothing helps get beyond this coma state.

I did do a search on the forum to see if there were other MB problems.

Ok, here was the message on that dos screen:
Memory testing ok, with correct number of gigs represented
CMOS Checksum error, defaults loaded.
Recheck CMOS setup.

Now that the battery has been out for awhile, will now try restarting and repowering the computer.

The power supply for this is an Antec Tru430 w
I have never swapped out a power supply before, though have an old PII or ?? in the closet. I have never done those tests before that I have seen posted on this forum...and can't get into the computer anyway.

I have had no recent hardware installs, and had not cracked the case of this computer within a few months of this meltdown.

Sometimes the computer takes a few pushes of the button to actually catch and get going, like a car that takes several turns of the starter motor to fire up.

Of course, I am on my other computer, and can easily KVM over to the broken one.

I notice there is a new ABIT-AV8 for sale on Ebay. Although it's a pain, would swapping out this identical motherboard be easy, just a hardware replacement and not too much "reload everything" adventure.

Thanks Carol...
 

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Remove all cards except video, remove printers cameras and the like, Attach just mouse keyboard and monitor then start the computer when you see the abit screen tap the delete key and see if it will enter bios.

The idea here is to eliminate everything possible just to see if it can get into bios. post back with results.

If you can get into bios note the temps and voltages and post them here for us to evaluate then add just the boot drive and see if it will boot to windows
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
yes, I took off two pieces of hardware, a PCI usb card and a USB/firewire card that was connected via a thick cable ending in two flat plugs on the MB.
I am now at the CMOS set up page,

you said "If you can get into bios note the temps and voltages and post them here for us to evaluate then add just the boot drive and see if it will boot to windows "

I have never done this before so will have to look at settings. But this is a big improvement.

Oh, on the KVM switch, a kewl Iogear DVI two port unit, I always get the message that it is not connected to a USB 2 port, when that is what the two cards ARE. This may be related problem. Hmmm.

Will check back, now have to get dinner for Mom, and double check to see if the KVM is still working both kb and mouse on the broken computer. Back in 20 minutes. Hooray...something has changed anyway! Oh, and someone geek on CL said to try removing all pci cards, and I thought, what's to remove, a USB card. THANKS A MILLION SO FAR...progress!!
Carol
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am now UP AND ON THE COMPUTER! Though things are a bit messy.

I was in Setup and changed date to today's, then I selected the default setting. Since I had unplugged the USB card, I was a little short on working usb for keyboard and mouse, so could not get mouse working to log on. But then reinstalled the usb 2 pci card and hooked up the usb connection to the KVM switch, so am got in and am now writing to you via the broken (now operating) computer. I have still not hooked up the Firewire/USB card, so who knows what the real cause of this crash was.

I did read something about a CMOS jumper option in all my research on this (about the time I was taking the battery out, many hours ago), but now probably don't need it.

So, though I am up now, what is the best way to proceed? Should I do more isolation tests between those two pci cards (the other with fire wire and usb)? I sort of tore everything off so now have to see what I unplugged. Most usb/printer/mouse/keyboard connections now go through the KVM switch, so want to make sure that is secure. the mouse and KB are currently going through that switch.

I never did find the temperature settings in the Setup area, cause once I selected to do the default settings, I was out and moving along into Windows.

WHEW! Will see what else you recommend to smooth out this problem. I was really ready to spring for a $75 powersource and maybe a $100 to replace the MB with exact ABit-AV8.

Thanks so much for your help! This is a great forum.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hey, Doby...
see you are on the forum right now. Thanks for your advice, which worked! The computer is working, though who knows if it's all optimal. At least I can work with it and will fool with it later! I had spent hours on the problem before I got your suggestion.
 

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CJ,

I am so glad to here that! The temps and voltages in bios should be under Uguru utility or PC health I am not sure on that exact model Abit board.

After we evaluate those readings and see if everthing is OK just add on part at a time till you find the offending one.

Sorry got busy on another thread and some mod work last night and was not able to respond
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Assume these ways to check temps are in the Setup area?

I basically got the computer up and running, and at first I reconnected the PCI usb card and ran the KVM switch through it.

It was running slow yesterday, very slow, so did some of the Crap Cleaner, Reg cleaner programs, which helped some. Then I did a Belarc report and noticed that only two sticks of Ram were active. Wow, no wonder it was sluggish. Got back in there and the end clips of two of the ram sticks were not fully clicked. So kept at it until I got them secure. Then Belarc showed the full 3 gigs. What a difference.

Of course, I couldn't run a Belarc report when I couldn't get into the computer... so not sure if the RAM ajar situation was part of the initial problem. When I was checking the ram to solve the problem, I might have actually loosened the clips. So now when the machine is running slow, I'll check Belarc and see if there are ram seating problems.

Will buy a new battery tomorrow probably just to be safe. And might eventually buy two 1 gig strips of Ram to max out the computer (knowing that the video card's own ram is part of the 4 gig max).

Thanks for your help. Will report back on those temps.

Carol
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
While inside computer, thinking of maybe upgrading the video card. I have a NVIDIA GeForce 6200 256 meg

What can I go up to? Suggestion for what to get.

Oh, I have a 24" Viewsonic 1080p HD, but not blu ray player (nor software to play it) yet. ON computer #2 I have an Nvidia 512meg, and didn't read until I installed it that it is really works well to a 22" size. Things one doesn't even consider at first....

Thanks, Carol

See the Uguru can also? be a hardware device that slips into the CD drive area, with readouts of everything. That's neat. I don't do any gaming on this machine, but had this simple game called Mono (like paint splats) and was not thrilled with the resolution. Banding...
 

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I don't know if I would upgrade the vide card on that old a machine, it takes a agp card correct? If you really want to though you should see what power supply is in it and tell us because you have to watch power depending on what card we recommend to make sure the psu is big enough to carry the demand.

What operating system are you running? Windows XP 32 bit or vista 32 bit really only uses about 3.5 gig or so anything else would be a waste.

Its possible the ram not being inserted correctly caused this whole mess
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
yes, it is an agp card. I have a Antec 430 watt power supply. I believe that the ram of the video card does not add on to the 4 gig limit of WinXP, which is what I have. So if I got a 512 card, getting more actual Ram wouldn't do a lot of good, if any. However, remember the days when 512 total ram was considered hot stuff? And a 32 ram video card. Whoooee!

It could be that the loose ram was the problem in the beginning, but disconnecting the PCI cards was what got me going, and I had checked the ram when trying to fix this, and probably did not get them fully seated then. Who knows? Good thing now is that I know not to settle for "almost" seated. :pray:
 
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