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Will A fried HDD cause system be "dead"

By RipVanWinkle
Oct 18, 2005
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  1. Will A fried HDD with power plugged in cause a system to not POST?

    This is my first post. Ive been building repairing...whatever for 8 years. Im A+ certified (not that it means that much), and currently do tech support as my day job in a school district.

    I had a...power surge I guess? I awoke saturday morning to a dead PC. This is bad for anyone. I do music production, and while clients data was backed up...mine was not. My heart sank into my underpants...along with some other things.

    And my system is dead. And by dead I dont mean it wont boot properly, I mean I might see the CPU fan rotate 1/8 of a turn...if Im lucky...no beeps, nothing (except one time I got 2 quick beeps)

    So anyway...I decided to start troubleshooting. I smelled burn. I replaced the Power Supply...still no go.

    I took out the processor, and it was definently burnt. A little brown around the core of the processor...DOH!

    Long story short, I now have a new POWER SUPPLY, MOBO and CPU. So I install these. I also, just for assurance, installed a known good VIDEO. I also connect my DVD CDRW FLOPPY and HDD.

    I am excited at this point..."If this thing starts, I will shout for joy to the heavens, cry aloud, and champagne will fall from the skies"

    I press the power button...NOTHING...I begin to cry tears of saddness. Going through and narrowing things down...I came to a discovery.

    If I unplug the power to the HDD, The thing turns on. MOBO LED turns on, FANS spin, but no display (I hope because of the HDD not being there). My heart sinks further down, with the assurance that the HDD is also gone

    SOOO....all this to say...

    Will a Toasted HDD (shorted..whatever) cause a system to not power at all?
  2. Crimsonite

    Crimsonite TS Rookie

    I've also been building/repairing desktop and notebook PC's for 6 years now, and I've never seen a problem like that. I've came across several PC's with dead HDD's but the system would still turn on just no HDD indicator light. On some systems it would give a loud beep and then it would tell you "No hard disk present".

    At least now you know what caused the problem. But I was wondering how would a HDD burn out? Overheat or PSU overload?
  3. AtK SpAdE

    AtK SpAdE TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,846

    Never seen anything like this either. My guess, the surge has done something to the motor, and now whenever power is supplied, the Mobo shorts.

    Just a guess though



    Sean
  4. blaacksheep

    blaacksheep TS Rookie Posts: 80

    The HDD is probably bad and the motor control circuit is loading down the power supply enough that it shuts down to protect itself. If you disconnect the HDD power cable AND the 40/80 wire IDE cable, your comp should fire up and get you to the setup screen. (That is assuming your RAM is good.) If not, try disconnecting all IDE devices and give it another go. Once it starts up you can connect each device in turn to see which drives are bad.

    ~jim
  5. RipVanWinkle

    RipVanWinkle TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you all...Spade and Blaacksheep were right. I was finally able to get the system to post without the HDD.

    I have never seen this happen though. Many people I work with assumed this could happen, but had never seen it first hand...I guess its one of those once in a blue moon things.
  6. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 9,431

    You can get a "dead" system even from misplaced master/slave jumpers..
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