Dell Inspiron 2500 XP2

  greybeard 16:42 23 Mar 08
Locked

I've been given the above laptop, which may be a doorstop or repairable. What I've tried so far is listed below, and I'd be grateful to receive any other ideas.

With the ac power supply connected, switching on lights the "power on"and "battery status"leds, but not the hdd led, and no boot up screen appears.
(Initially the battery was low but has now recharged.)
No combination of F keys produces any response.
On switching off, there is a single bleep, and the hdd light momentarily flicks on then off.

The hdd is ok(checked in 2nd machine)and likewise the memory sticks. I've also tried the hdd via a usb/sata connector with no luck.
I'm waiting to collect a recovery disk etc that came with the laptop originally, to see if I can boot up from that.
As an experiment, I tried a cd in the cdrom and that spins up, but I'm not sure about a floppy in the fdd.
I've now stripped the m/c down to locate the cmos battery which is next on my list of "usual suspects", but so far I've not located it, and started another thread/request for any info on it's location.

John

  greybeard 17:15 23 Mar 08

..... but I'd still welcome any alternative thoughts on basic diagnostics of the "dead screen/no boot up" variety.
John

  greybeard 17:43 23 Mar 08

I've measured the cmos battery in cct at 3.3 volts, so it may be ok.
If I want to try resetting the bios, do I disconnect the battery(I'm capable of the micro soldering necessary)or might it be better to find a jumper, if it exists ?
If located the bios chip, but no obvious jumper pins. There are a couple of tinned pads, unmarked in the same area as the chip, but that's hardly sufficient evidence.
John

  greybeard 17:49 23 Mar 08

"I've located" the chip.
If I reset the bios, am I going to need a bios password ?
The previous owner would never have gone into the bios, being computer illiterate, so it would have been factory set I presume.

John

  greybeard 11:42 25 Mar 08

Well, if I only talk to myself here, at least I can agree with all the answers :(

I've now tried to rum memtest86+ via a floppy and a cd, but in both cases each drive starts briefly, but doesn't continue to run.

So now I shall go and do some gardening until any brave soul cares to offer and/or discuss a way forward.

John

  brundle 11:50 25 Mar 08

Everything you've described sounds like a dead motherboard or processor - power is getting to where it should and that's all. I would carefully consider if it is worth the effort to diagnose if it were me. I'm not convinced that a problem with the BIOS would prevent it booting entirely either.

  greybeard 13:06 25 Mar 08

<Everything you've described sounds like a dead motherboard or processor - power is getting to where it should and that's all.
I would carefully consider if it is worth the effort to diagnose if it were me......>

Agreed, but I suppose I just enjoy the challenge and the possibility of increasing my knowledge.
As I have the time to do it, it's deffinitly worth it for me.

<I'm not convinced that a problem with the BIOS would prevent it booting entirely either....>

Yes, the fact that nothing happens at all rather than a first screen, suggests something more fundamental, some data/supply line perhaps gone open cct.
I don't know if your familiar with memtest, but it's a standalone program that should run on its own, but I don't know if that's before or after the bios setup.
john

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 15:34 25 Mar 08

Reset the BIOS to default settings.

Removing battery should not require a password to be put in when CMOS battery refitted.

Try just on mains with no laptop battery fitted.

Have you tried connecting a second monitor?

  greybeard 16:14 25 Mar 08

Hi Fruit Bat.
Thanks for the heads up on the battery/pwd.
I'll go and try the mains sans battery in a mo.
I've tried just plugging in another monitor to the laptop, but do I need any key toggle to switch to an external one, or is the signal on the monitor socket already ?

Regards
John

  greybeard 16:28 25 Mar 08

No result from pulling the laptop battery and booting up from mains.
I've plugged in another monitor and tried again but nothing on screen.
Is removing the cmos battery for 10 mins(?) my next move ?

John

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 21:00 25 Mar 08

Is removing the cmos battery for 10 mins(?) my next move ?

Yes

do I need any key toggle to switch to an external one

Yes, Fn + usually one of the F keys should have a square (montor) sign on it.

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