Big problems; computers not working at all now

By Macewindu
Nov 22, 2006
  1. So here's the story. I bought the following PC from TigerDirect for myself:
    - eMachines C3060 AMD Sempron 3000+ / 512MB DDR / 160GB HDD / DVD±RW Dual-Layer / CD-ROM / Flash Media Reader / NVIDIA GeForce 4 MX Video / 10/100Mbps LAN / Windows XP Home / Refurbished Desktop PC.
    I upgraded to 1 GB of RAM, upgraded the power supply to an Antec SmartPower 500W, and installed this video card: XFX GeForce 6600 / 256MB DDR / AGP 8X / Dual DVI / TV Out / Video Card.

    I bought the following PC for my brother at Newegg:
    - ABS Awesome V2 30 Athlon 64 3200+ 512MB DDR 160GB NVIDIA GeForce 6150 Windows XP Home - Retail.
    I upgraded it to 2GB of RAM and installed this video card: XFX PVT42EUDE3 Geforce 6800XT 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card - Retail

    My computer would work perfectly, except for random hardlocks whenever I played World of Warcraft. One day it hardlocked, and when I restarted it, it would freeze on the big "e" logo (emachines). To this day, that is all it does now.

    My brother's computer worked perfectly at his house for months. He brought it over this week (visiting for Thanksgiving), and it worked fine for awhile, until it started to get a sort of BSOD. Something about dumping physical memory or something. Now for some reason it will show the bios screen (manufacturer advertisement, similar to the big "e" on my computer), and then freeze on a black screen.

    We have the PC's hooked up via KVM switch with my dad's older Gateway running Windows 2000. They are also hooked up on the same hub. Could this have anything to do with it? Could my dad's computer be infecting ours?

    My problem is I have no idea where to start. I don't know why my brother's computer worked just fine until he brought it over here. Any help would be GREATLY appreciated. I feel like I've thrown over 2 grand down the toilet.
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    If the machine hangs at the POST screen, then there is no infection of any kind.
    You are having hardware issues most likely.

    Can you get into the BIOS setup?

    Reset the BIOS to factory defaults. (Read The Friendly Manual about clearing the CMOS memory).
    Try removing the extra RAM you added.
  3. Macewindu

    Macewindu TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you very much for the swift reply. I really appreciate it.

    I reset the CMOS on both systems by removing the battery for half an hour and reinstalling it. On my brother's computer, it lets you get into the BIOS settings and set it to defaults. After doing so, it produces the same results. :(

    On my computer, it won't even let you get into the BIOS settings. It says press F2 for setup and neither that nor DEL works. It just stays frozen on the "e".

    As for the RAM, his initial half-gig of RAM is at his house, which is inaccessible right now, and I gave mine away because I initially upgraded to 2GB of ram (have since given one of those sticks away).
  4. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    OK. The computers have different issues most likely..

    The black screen probably means that there is some problem booting into Windows. Maybe the hard drive, its contents or the bootloader are corrupt.
    Test the RAM and the hard drive on that computer. You should still be able to boot from a floppy or a CD.

    As for your own machine.. Hard locking at the BIOS indicates some serious issue. Have you overclocked your machine? Could the processor be overheating? The RAM may be bad.. Well, actually, any piece of hardware may be bad there :)
    Try running a barebones system with nothing else but the processor and RAM connected. The integrated video should be working now after you reset the BIOS.
  5. Macewindu

    Macewindu TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks again for the reply. It's wierd; I brought both computers to my friends house, and mine worked perfectly last night. My brother's computer still didn't work. I tried my computer again today, and the monitor doesn't even recognize its connected to a computer. Really frustrating.

    At an earlier date, I did try taking out the video card. It started working fine but then started freezing on the "e" again. I'm hoping to at least get my computer running long enough to save all my work onto a DVD, but as for now, it's being a punk.

    Both of these computers were retail, so neither came with a copy of windows, or even a restoration disc. Companies seem to have forgotten about restoration discs these days. So is my next step to try to reinstall windows?
  6. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Well, you can't reinstall Windows if you can't get past the BIOS screen!

    Ask the retailer for a Windows CD. They have to give you one or provide some other kind of support.
  7. Macewindu

    Macewindu TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I just went out and bought Windows, but when I start up my brother's computer with the disc inside, the same thing keeps happening. I went into the BIOS and changed the priority to start from the CD Rom but to no avail. I remember doing just that before when I've had problems with other computers.

    As for my computer, for some reason it has decided to start working. I haven't shut it down since then, in fear of it not working again.
  8. Macewindu

    Macewindu TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Do you think its a good idea to try the ram from my computer in my brother's computer?
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