Major Problem - Can't Get PC to Power On

ok so last night i pushed the cat off the desk (front of desk), and it hit something that turned off the computer. now it doesnt turn on...sort of!

what it does do:
HDD led comes on on case
ALL fans start up (PS, MB, CPU, Video, 4 case)
HDD's start spinning
1 of 2 dvd drives turn on (the other is dead now i guess)
lights on MB on

but system does not go to POST, the power light on front case does NOT come on but the HDD light does? and that is as far as it goes! no beeps, or screens on monitor, nothing

Checked all cables and connections inside and out of the case, all secure, so the only thing i can think of is somehow the cat hit either the case or power buttons and either shorted out something or static fried something (from outside the case?)

so what is fried and needs to be replaced MB or CPU...i'm leaning to MB since the system wont go to post and no beeps, and no power led on front of case (but fans are working and HDD's are spinning), but it could also be CPU, but im not sure how CPUm could have been damaged from a bump to computer, otr how a static charge from the outside could have fried it!

anyway basic system specs, since you all will ask anyway...
athlon xp 3500 64
biostar sli motherboard(forgot numbers, they only make 1 or 2 anyway)
2gb corsair mem (ddr400)
2 sata wd hdd's
geforce 7800 gt
SB xfi plat
xp pro

thanks for help,
Dan Williams


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Political User
Re: Major Problem

danw, to be honest at this stage if you have no idea what is the issue i would do this.

1) open your case (take out the cmos battery from the mobo and leave it out for a FULL minute, then put it back in, this will reset the bios).
2) Disconnect all componants apart from the cpu and take out all but one memory chip. Thats the H/D, CD, DVD etc.. disconnected.
3) turn it on again, with just the monitor mouse and k/b attached (don't plug in anything else).

Does it turn on? if it does add each componant in turn, until you either a) find the culprit or b) don't find it and all is ok (possibly something was disconnected)

If it does not turn on switch out the memory stick for another and keep on doing this till you have used all the sticks, if you do this and it still does not come on you have at least narrowed it down to three componants, the CPU, Memory (although this is unlikely if you have more than one for them to be all fried) or the mobo.

If you have any Hard switches on your mobo make sure they are all set to the default option.

Let me know how this goes.

The next option will be to unseat the cpu and clean the thermal paste, make sure no pins are black/brown and/or bent, then reseat it again, also make sure the cpu fan is still working, also make sure your psu fan is working.

Hope this helps.
Re: Major Problem

all the fans work, say all components work and ram, and narrow it to the MB or CPU, what is likely, i will check the cpu when i get off work tonight, assuming it is ok visually, what are the chances the mb is bad, even though the lights on the mb work and and components have power from mb...


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Who knows it's like asking how likely it is to rain tomorrow.

Go home and follow what i have written down in the order i wrote it, if you do, the likelyhood is the system will work, but if it is a hardware malfunction you'll be able to figure it out.

If the mobo's light is working the chance it is the mobo is less, but the motherboard has hundreds if not thousands of circuits and any one of them could have been shorted, even if the light is still on, for instance the AGP/pci-e port could be shorted, but the rest of the mobo would still work, but the motherboard as a whole would still effectively be dead.

So unless you have a volt meter or some such thing and know how to use it, it's pretty hard to pinpoint, people with experience can usually tell. But its a learned thing. (i'm not one of those people by the way haha).

No doubt madmatt is, so i hereby volunteer his services this weekend, just tell him where you live and he'll be around haha.
ok tried the battery and all but basic components, so...

with just the cpu, ram, video, KB and mouse: lights on MB and fans (all) only no front lights or monitor...

so either CPU is dead or MB data transfer is dead but not MB power distribution.

so if the cpu was dead would the MB power up, but no POST, and if the MB is bad would it still supply power to the components? if the MB is powering up but no leds on the case are on, then wouldnt it be the MB...

if i had another similar system i would just swap out cpu, see if it wporks but i dont so i need to make a guess based on data, and input from the community to see if I need to replace the CPU or MB and what is the best guess...


and the cat story is not a cover up!!!!!!!!!!!!!! its karma, push the cat and i get punished!...
why would it be the power supply it provides enough power for all the fans, 1 optical drive and both HDD's, it is a quality PS, i dont see it being the is down to the cpu or mb...IMO...

Hipster Doofus

Good grief Charlie Brown
Did you do what Lancer suggested? What does the monitor do while all this is going on?

If the case was knocked, even lightly, it is very possble that something, mabe the video card has come lose. Reseat it by taking it out & putting it back.

I once had a program, win fax 10, that when installing made my modem disappear, I had to take the modem out, reseat it & it appeared again. All from installing a damn program. :mad:


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no if the cpu is dead the mobo will likely not turn on at all.

One think it could be in the case plugs, the pwr,reset,speaker etc... section unplug them all and reseat them again. Also do you have another v/card? at least make sure your one is seated correctly, also make sure that the monitor has no bent pins.

It could possibly be your psu but i also doubt it.

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