PC failing to start

  paulpba 08:58 10 Jan 06
Locked

I have a Packard Bell PC that has stopped running. When you press the power button nothing happens, only a feint click from the power supply. I was told that the power supply might have failed but I bought a new one and it was the same.
I did discover that if you removed the temperature sensor lead from the PSU to the PC then when I pressed the power button, the PSU came on and the CPU fan started to run. Nothing else though. As soon as I reconnected the lead - nothing. I also tried a different fan from an old PC but that didn't seem to make any difference.
Can anyone help please??

  Diemmess 09:37 10 Jan 06

There may be a motherboard failure of some sort, but you can try a fundamental test since you are happy to open the case.

Remove the power supply from the HD, the Floppy drive, and any CD device you have.
Make sure the video card (if it is separate) is properly home and secure.

Now switch on. (check the CPU fan and PSU fans are running.
If you are lucky, the monitor should show something leading up to the point where it cannot load Windows "for a variety of no disk type reasons."
If you get this far, the fault lies with one of the disconnected devices, and you can try re-connecting them one at a time starting with the HD.

  Gongoozler 09:39 10 Jan 06

When a computer completely fails to start, the only option is to eliminate as many possible causes as possible. Unplug everything from the motherboard that isn't essential to the booting process. Start with the memory sticks. If it doesn't respond, then try the drives (hard drives, cd/dvd and floppy drives). If that doesn't produce a reaction, then remove everything else except the processor with its heatsink, PSU, case speaker and power switch. If you don't get an error beep, then the problem can only be in one of the few remaining parts.

  paulpba 09:54 10 Jan 06

Thanks for the advice - will try tonight. Doesn't sound too promising though.

  paulpba 08:35 11 Jan 06

Well, I tried disconecting everything as advised and still nothing. So I took the bold step of getting another Motherboard from PCWorld (Foxconn 865) and tranferred everything over.
The good news is that it boots up ok and Windows XP starts. Sometimes, (when it doesn't lock up)it goes through and a message comes up saying that I need to activate the windows software with Microsoft. It then leads through to trying to connect to the internet which it then fails to do. At various points along the way, the whole thing locks up and I have to re-book. I tried it again this morning and it only got as far as the log-on page.

  paulpba 08:40 11 Jan 06

Forgot to say - fan is running on CPU but it is a bit noisy - it's only a year old though and not particularly heavily used.

  Gongoozler 11:45 11 Jan 06

Hi paulpba. Fans do sometimes get noisy surprisinly quickly. Fortunately they aren't expensive. You can get a new one for about £5 click here

When you replace a motherboard, especially one with a different chipset, you will generally have to reinstall Windows because the previous installation has the wrong drivers for the new chipset . You will then need to reactivate Windows.

  paulpba 08:59 12 Jan 06

Thanks for the advice. I have (foolishly) not made a re-boot disk and did not get one with the PC (from PC World). A also do not have the Windows XP disk and looking on the PB forum that seems normal. I don't really want to have to go and buy it. Therefore, I'm a bit stuck.

Tried the PC again last night but still the same.

Any ideas, or is it time to go shopping?

Thanks guys.

  Diemmess 09:35 12 Jan 06

You have already spent on a new mobo and PSU, so you either waste that and buy a new box, or buy your own copy of XP.

From what you have said, the computer is not that old and presumably is worth resurrecting.
To me the only option now would be to buy my own copy of XP and be proof against a similar mishap in future.
.......Unless you are feeling flush and would like a a snazzy new one, which takes us full circle!

  Gongoozler 09:44 12 Jan 06

Windows XP Home edition OEM is only £58.74 inc VAT provided you buy it with a non-peripheral component click here

  paulpba 10:50 12 Jan 06

Thanks guys - The only slight worry that i have is that I buy windows XP (digging myself in deeper) and then it still doesn't work.

I did manage to get a refund for the PSU from PC World though which was a result. Not sure I'll be so successful with the motherboard!!

Thanks.

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