TechSpot

ARRRRRRRRRGH -- MSI K7N2 Blank Screen.....

By mtbikermike
Mar 20, 2005
  1. Hi all --
    I've been working on building a pc for weeks & am now losing ground. Before I throw the whole thing out the window, thought I'd ask around:
    Parts right now:

    MSI K7N2 Delta mobo
    Athlon XP 2000+ cpu
    512 MB SDRAM
    ATI Radeon 9600 pro video
    Creative Sound Blaster Audigy2 ZS sound
    Samsung SC-148C 48x CD-ROM
    Imation floppy drive
    Seagate 160 GB and 80 GB ultra ATA/100 hard drives
    Samsung syncmaster 997 DF monitor

    There's no OS installed; trying to install new (full) version of Win xp SP2.

    I wasn't able to boot from floppy or CD -- usually got error saying:
    "File aspiec.sys caused an unexpected error (32768) at line 5964 in d:\xpsprtm\base\boot\setup\setup.c"
    -- if I got past this I would get "file pci.sys is corrupted."

    So I took a shot in the dark & formatted -- successfully -- the 80 GB hard drive. Tried to boot up again and got the same error pci.sys is corrupted. This included when I had the windows xp CD-rom in the drive. :suspiciou

    Sooooooooo, got REALLY bold and took a look @ the bios setup -- set it to boot first from CD-ROM. I figured that if I could boot directly from the Win XP CD then I might be able to deal with the errors.

    Now when I turn it on I get no display whatsoever -- the cd-rom light blinks regularly several times, then stops; the "working" light on top of the case stays on steadily, and the monitor shows nothing. Actually, the power light blinks, meaning that it is not getting any signal at all.

    Things I have tried:
    -- booting & holding down "delete" -- which is how I got into bios setup. No change.
    -- unplug & replug monitor feed from computer. no change
    -- reset cmos jumper per instruction manual -- from 1-2 to 2-3 -- for several minutes, then change back -- no change.
    -- remove cmos battery for several hours and reinstall -- no change.

    I am positive that the only thing I changed was the boot order -- from floppy to CD-ROM, and now I've gone from a couple of errors to something that is effectively dead. :dead: At this point I figure my only realistic option is to get a new mobo -- but is there something that i haven't tried?

    mtbikermike
    olympia, WA
     
  2. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    That could be a multitude of things, but random errors like that tend to be most often memory.

    I suggest you download and install this to a floppy:

    http://www.memtest86.com/


    ... and run that on the machine in question. IF that comes back clean, let us know. If it comes back with errors you will need to look for some new ram.
     
  3. vegasgmc

    vegasgmc TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,377

    I agree with bad memory. There are also issues with Radeon 9600 series cards and nForce motherboards.
     
  4. mtbikermike

    mtbikermike TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for help both of you -- I love how people work together in forums like this.

    I tried the disk/memory test and it came back with ......... nothing. Pretty clear to me that NO drives are being recognized. I've tried bootable floppies, the memory test floppy, bootable CD-ROM, in all permutations of drives being plugged in & not plugged in........... all with no results.

    I will say that before I had this problem and was only dealing with the "aspiec-file-causing-error" and/or pci.sys corrupted issues, I saw many posts saying that these could be a memory issue. The memory is brand new single 512 MB stick (you probably know that this board doesn't need pairs).

    Question: Is a memory problem consistent with the fact that machine would boot up before & get me to the "insert system disk" command, and the fact that I was able to format one (of two) hard drives? At that point it was recognizing *all* drives during boot -- I watched it list floppy, CD-ROM & both floppies. All I did (--->as far as I know<----) was change the boot order so it would go to CD-ROM first.

    Is it possible that beforehand it was getting a CD-ROM driver from the floppy and THEN going to CD-ROM (I used a CD-ROM to format the hard drive, so it was definitely working then), but now, since it's looking @ CD-ROM first it doesn't have driver and it's somehow getting "stuck" there rather than moving on to hard drive or floppy for boot/drivers? :confused:

    I forgot to mention something before that may or may not be crucial -- it's a refurbished mobo......... my other computer requires pairs of memory, so I can't test the stick there ------- ?? mobo or memory ??......... there's no smilie for how I'm feeling right now!

    I can't ditch the whole project -- over $1,000 into it & way past return dates. Maybe take memory stick to local computer store & see if they can test it?

    Mike
     
  5. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    MSI K7N2 motherboards use DDR PC3200 memory. You have the wrong memory. You stated you're using SDRAM. I'd start there.
     
  6. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    What Video Cards work well with MSI K7N2 NFORCE motherboards? I'm having big time problems with getting a video card to work with my system. See my other thread or reply here.
     
  7. Merc14

    Merc14 TS Rookie Posts: 171

    First, look at the manual and verify that your RAM is in the correct slot to support single DIMM operations.
    Second, verify the master and slave jumper settings on your HDDs. Better yet, just hook up one HDD for now, set as master and work with that till you achieve stability.
    Third, verify that the FDD light is not on continuously,(if it is flip the drive end of the cable around).
    Fourth, Check each and every connection on the MoBo and ensure it is secure. Do you have the 4 pin power connected as well as the 20 pin power?
     
  8. RealBlackStuff

    RealBlackStuff TS Rookie Posts: 6,503

    You should start at the base: disconnect the PC from the mains, take the small round battery out (careful not to break anything), put the reset-BIOS jumper on for 10 seconds or so, then put the battery back in, reconnect to the mains and start it up.
    Bet it'll boot.
     
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