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Dell Dimension 4700 Blinking orange, no power

By LilSmokie45
May 28, 2008
  1. I have a Dell dimension 4700 . I recently acquired it from work. Not necessarily in the best condition. I cleaned it up and tried to power on and all it does is blink orange/amber,it will not power on . It has started since I've had it though and i cleaned it up and it ran great, but i only got it to start one time.Its running WinXP Pro,with a Pentium 4. So what i know is that the mobo is getting power because the green light is on. I have checked the 4-pin aux cord that powers the processor. I know the power supply is set to the correct voltage. All cables seem to be connected properly. I have run out of ideas. Any Suggestions would be much appreciated!
     
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Even though you have a green light. The power supply could be bad. The green light says that the +5 volts is being produced. There are several volages the come from a computers power supply, not just one or two
     
  3. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    I hope you did not clean up the case with compressed air or a vacuum cleaner. They generate a lot of static electricity that can destroy a motherboard in a fraction of a second.
    Otherwise, it is likely that the hard drive has gone bad. The 4700 is just about old enough to have worn out its hard drive. I hope you received the install disk from work then you bought the computer from them.
    Most 4700's arrived with a floppy drive. Try booting to a borrowed floppy disk of Windows 98, Windows ME, or MS Dos. If that works, it is an indication your hard drive is too sick to live.
    The good news is that the 4700 has always been a good and reliable computer that should give you years of live with a little maintenance and tune-up.
    That model used either a Western Digital, Samsung, or Maxtor hard drive... and all of them failed early, as that was the early days of the change-over to the larger faster drives.
    As Tmagic650 suggests it could also be the power supply. That power supply is a very reliable one, but any power supply can fail at any time. Best test is to temporarily replace it with a known good one from another machine to see if there is a change.
    It could also be a CPU fan failure, or it could be that when you cleaned it up, you left a cable or a socket loose... or damaged. When the cables have been inside a hot case for a long time, they become hard and brittle... so any movement can break a precious connection.
    So the first thing you do is go back to it with a strong light and a lot of time, so you can inspect for loose wires near the power switch, cables that are disconnected from the hard drive or elsewhere, and so on. Use some denatured alcohol
    The drive is old enough to give you trouble anyway, so it may be time to buy a nice Seagate EIDE or PATA drive with a five year warranty for $40 to $80, depending on size. Use that to test the rest of the system. If you get an OEM drive, you will need to download the setup from the Seagate or whatever manufacturer site.
    If you do not have the restore discs, you are in deep doodoo. You can buy a new set from Dell, and they will send you Service Pack 2... for about $36 including shipping.
    You want to first change the ownership of the computer from work to you, on the Dell website, before you order the startup/recovery discs.
    If you already have the disc set, it may be Service Pack 1. That means they will not work well on drives larger than 130 GB... you will have to create dual partitions that are no larger than 130 GB.
    Another problem on the 4700 is that the optical drives wear out. YOu may not be able to use an install disk until you replace the CD-RW drive... at a cost of about $25 online, or $35 in town..
    Good luck. Let us know what happened.
     
  4. LilSmokie45

    LilSmokie45 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you guys for the quick reply. When i got this computer from work it already had this problem. Thats why it was givin to me, for free!. I'm am currently in school to get my associates degree in Computer Info. Services, so i have good knowledge about computers. I did clean it with compressed air , but i highly doubt it did any damage. The one time i actually got it to power on it ran superb other than a small video issue, but that isn't a big concern for me. As for your suggestion on getting a new EIDE HDD , I have no available EIDE connectors left. The HDD that is currently in the machine is SATA. This PC is really not that important to me just thought it would be a simple fix and it has just turned into a headache. I will try to replace the power supply and thats about as far as i will go, if the problem still persists then i'm just going to strip out the parts i want and start building a new one from scratch.Please let me know if anyone else has any suggestions before i tear it to pieces. Thank you Tmagic and raybay, will try to keep you updated with what im doin.
     
  5. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Unless the hard drive is shorted out I really doubt that it is the cause of your trouble. It may need a format and clean install of the OS, but you can take care of that later. Power supplies are cheaper these days. I have fixed a few of these Dell 4700's and I don't think it has a proprietary power supply
     
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Don't replace the power supply until you test the hard drive. It is usually NOT the power supply, but rather the hard drive or CPU fan or video graphics card..
    Good news. SATA drives are as inexpensive as PATA drives.. or cheaper. That power supply is very rugged.

    You can buy a power supply tester for $9.95 to $25 depending on how fancy and the complexity... 20 pins vs 24 pins, etc... and test the power supply. That tester will make you money enough to pay for it... and allow you to help others.
     
  7. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    It usually IS the power supply or the motherboard itself... Raybay thinks he knows it all, but we other techs know better
     
  8. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    The proof will be in the pudding. That is one our most heavily supported system... hundreds of them... exceeded only by the Dell Dimension 8400. Lets see what actual workups show, Montana
     
  9. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    The Dell 4700 power supplies were missing -5 and -3 volts. The - 3 or +3 volts provide the PSEN signal. Raybay, you sound like more of a paper pusher than a tech these days. You and I both know that statistics can be made to show any trend you want to show. True data or not
     
  10. LilSmokie45

    LilSmokie45 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Alright guys the fight is over! My problem has been solved and it looks like raybay was wrong! I went to a place nearby and purchased a new power supply , got home and installed it, and it fired right up! The system would not even power on at all or go through POST so i ruled out the hard drive i went for the power supply first , glad i did, it runs great now.Thank you both for the advise though.But more thanks to Tmagic!
     
  11. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 7,241   +9

    Thanks for lettine us know. It is always fun to read about somebody getting their system to work. Watch out for that hard drive. It remains four or five years old.
    It doesn't make no never mind to me that I was wrong... but that you worked at it go get it right.
    Congratulations.
     
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