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New Motherboard, Processor, Heat Sink, RAM stick. Freezing at POST

By Dataslycer ยท 34 replies
Jun 25, 2006
  1. I recently replaced new componets above to try to fix a failure to boot problem. After installing all of the above and replacing the old parts not mentioned (CD Drive, Floppy, NIC, HD), I run into a trouble with two symptoms.

    1. When it reboots, the the power light turns on,the keyboard lights flashes, and the CD Rom flashes a few times at increment but it will not boot past that so I can't even get into BIOS. The monitor remains inactive

    2. It gets into the boot phase listed above except you can hear the PC Speaker beeps once and the monitor turns on to display only the processor before freezing, my keyboard only responding to 1-5 keyboard strokes before it stops.

    3. It boots fine but a minute or so, my keyboard fails to respond to commands.

    I also checked the new hardware and see if they were inserted properly (had a wrist strap during installation and checking) and nothing seems wrong. At the moment I'm at my wits end of figuring what's wrong. I am open to suggestion what troubleshooting method should I try next. Thanks in advance.

    (currently stripping HD, CD Drive, and Floppy and trying to boot)

    Listed components:
    Motherboard: A-Bit SG-80 series Socket 775 533 Mhz FSB
    Processor: Intel Celeron D 351 3.2 Ghz 256 k Cache 533 Mhz FSB
    Heat Sink:Thermaltake 775
    Memory stick: 2 IPSG 256 MB PC32000 Dual DDR

    PS: Reminder, is POST operates before you see anything on the screen or is when it displays many of your basic hardware components or when the screen displays the hardware on screen? My memory of computer hardware faded a bit.
  2. Tedster

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

  3. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,994

    I am not entirely clear on what you are trying to do. is the problem you cant boot from the widows CD adn fromat and install windows? or is the problem you have changed all this hardware and think your going to boot into windows from a hard drive with the OS allready installed?
  4. Dataslycer

    Dataslycer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    The problem is that it has a tendency to not boot up at all or when it does, there are times whe the keyboard suddenly responding.

    ex. When it successfully boots up and I go to BIOS, it will stop responding after 1 minute.

    In certain areas where it freezes, I noticed when the computer "freezes" I can still see the cursor blinking but the system suddenly stopped responding to my input and stops the boot sequence.

    In BIOS, I observe the time and when it freezes up, sometimes the time sudden switches toa random number before going back to normal. When it does freeze the timer stops.

    Note: I discovers that it successfully boots each time I wait for a few seconds but I face the "freeze" problem. If I try to restart it earlier than that, it will not boot up. It is starting to make me think the heat sink is not enough but I'll let you decide.
  5. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    when you do a major hardware change like that, you need to format your harddrive and re-install the operating system (as well as other programs, files, etc.)

    you can try tp perform a repair install to avoid a full format/reinstall, but this doesn't always work and may lead to stabilty problems.
  6. Dataslycer

    Dataslycer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    It's not the Operating System that I'm having trouble with, it's getting the computer to run past 1 minute without locking up. Sorry if I seemed unclear. If there is anything that you have questions about in the scenarion, feel free to ask and I will provide as much detail as I can. Thank you in advance.
  7. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,994

    What is the Powersupply? Brand, its wattage, and how much is it delivering on the +12V rail. if you have access to other ram you might try it.
  8. wolfram

    wolfram TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,967   +9

    Yes, check the power supply.

    Also, did you install properly the heatsink? Because Prescott`s tend to overheat a LOT.
  9. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    sounds like an operating system issue to me.

    did you format your hard drive and perform a clean install of windows? or at the very least perform a repair install to overwrite system files?

    although it does work on rare occasions, 90% of the time you cannot just switch a hard drive when you swap a motherboard and other hardware. you have to reinstall windows so that it installs based on your new hardware configuration.

    this is a likely cause of your system instability problem and should not rule it out.
  10. whtddusy516

    whtddusy516 TS Enthusiast Posts: 113

    It sounds like a heat issue to me, (ill repeat what someone else said) check your heatsink to make sure its installed correctly, and check the thermal paste. Make sure you have a nice air flow in your case also
  11. Tedster

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

    if you swapped the motherboard you MUST re-install windows. Windows is specificlly installed to the system it is on. When you swap motherboards windows see it as being installed on a new computer which violates the license if being used on more than one computer. You have to reinstall and re-register the windows to the new system. Call M$ for new key.
  12. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Well, i would think its a driver or some other issue in the os, given the fact that its not a complete fresh install. I agree with the people here that said its not a good idea to go the way you are going. Even though some people do this i certainly wouldnt. Not only do new issues crop up but you are also taking on the old issues that your os has as well.
    For one thing, the hard drive that one starts with on a new motherboard (mobo) install should be "factory fresh". And the only way to do that is to "zero write" the hard drive. This prevents virus and other malware that affects the master boot record (mbr) in your hard drive from "spilling" over into your new install and causing nothing but problems. Or, in some cases, the mbr was just simply altered in some other manner. I do the following:
    Set bios to boot from floppy.
    Use win98se boot disk to get to dos.
    Then use the hard drive diagnostic program on a floppy drive. Inside that program, which you can get in advance from your hard drive mfgrs website, you will find a program that "writes zeroes" to the hard drive. This puts not only the mbr in perfect shape but the entire hard drive is put back into factory fresh condition, minus any physical wear and tear of course.
    Then, when you install windows you have a heck of a lot less problems and lo and behold windows installs just fine.

    On the other hand, you could even be working with a power supply issue. Newer motherboards and cpu's require more power these days and its a strain on generic power supplies (ps). So, if you dont mind, give us the make and model of your ps. Total watts means very little, its the amperage on the rails that really matters, so give us that info, its on the side of the ps. Some cheap ps's say they have 650 watts when the truth is its more like 300. But more importantly, good ps's have internal safeguards that protect your other pc parts when things go bad and cheap ones dont have these safeguards and take down your pc parts when the power supply goes bad!

  13. Dataslycer

    Dataslycer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Well I seriously don't think it's the OS because even when I unplug the Hard Drive and go to the BIOS configuration, it locks up when setting boot priority or any other area of the BIOS.

    I'm not sure of the PS build but here is what I got from looking:

    Model HP- 2037F3
    AC Input 50-60V
    DC Input- 5v 22A
    Maximum output 200W (hmm didn't realize the output was so slow. Then again I installed a new MoBo replacing a rather old machine.).

    What happens if the PS doesn't supply enough power?
  14. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,994

    You could have saved alot of time and trouble if you had told us it was a dell to start with. older dell machines with 200 Watt power supplies ARE NOT compaitable with standard ATX boards, which you have now installed. even if it were compaitable that system isnt going to run on a 200 watt power supply.

    if the PSU is at least compaitable with your board then you get just what you have happening or nothing happens at ll, ie; no boot perod, not even a sign of life. in your case using a non compaitable PSU you are experiencing the best cae scenario. becasue the other scenario means you just fired your mobo and components.

    Get a standard ATX Power supply, Like antec 430 or 480 true power series.
  15. Dataslycer

    Dataslycer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    Oh blast it, I never swapped PSU before (and I needed a bit of help swapping the MoBo and processor since it was my first time). I might have my instructor to help me with with this one though I'm going to go try your suggestion. Thanks.

    The rookie.
  16. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,994

    That old 200 watt Dell PSU probably didnt even have a 4 pin 12V connector that your motherboard requires. ( the connection is usually just left of the CPU socket.) hopefully you have not damaged the board with repeated attempts to boot without that connected.
  17. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    the power supply may look intimidating because it has so many wires coming out of it, but it is pretty-much fool proof.

    each connector only matches what it is supposed to plug into. remember the shape puzzles when you were a little kid? think of it like that... just match up the shapes and you'll be hooked up in no time. :)

    just remember to neaten up the wires after it's all hooked up to allow proper air flow in your case. (tie the wires together or route them around/behind things. don't just leave them all dangling)
  18. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Its a wonder you didnt burn everything up. If you are using an older Dell unit, its, like has been said, not wired the same as a standard atx power supply.
    So you need to scrap that ps and get a new power supply, which can be bought new or used anywhere. Bring your mobo manual to any shop and they will fix you up.
    But dont buy a cheap, generic power supply (ps). Get a decent ps. If you want a list of good and bad power supplies, i can supply that for you.
    A good unit can be had for around $30 at newegg.com. They have some Fortron and Antec and Enermax models from $25 to $50.
    A good quality 350 watt power supply will do the job for a standard pc.
  19. Dataslycer

    Dataslycer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31


    I did get a new power supply and hooked it up and got the same problem. My instructor told me that I may have had added too much thermal paste between the heat sink and the processor. Would this be a possible problem?
  20. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Just a very thin layer of thermal paste on the raised metal part of the cpu is all you need. I use a part of a playing card to do the job.
    If you have used more than that then you should clean it off and start over.

    However, you still havent dealt with the "Dell" issue. I dont know if you understand. With older Dell parts you have to have a "Dell" supplied motherboard to go with your Dell power supply. You cant use just any power supply and you cant just use any motherboard.
    Seems to me you need to get rid of that Dell branded power supply and get yourself a standard atx power supply as listed below.
  21. Tedster

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

    older DELL systems use proprietary parts you must use DELL parts.
  22. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Yes. In post #12 i believe i pointed to the power supply.
    In post #13 you, Dataslycer, pointed out you are working with a 250 watt older Dell power supply.
    In post #14 and a few other posts after that you were advised that you cant use an old Dell power supply on a newer system for a number of reasons.
    I sure hope you havent ruined your motherboard and other parts.
    You need to stop right now and get a standard atx power supply, take out the Dell and throw it away or at least put a large notice on it.
    With the proper power supply you may get up and running, if not, well, you may have ruined your motherboard.
    You need to address the Dell power supply issue.
  23. Dataslycer

    Dataslycer TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 31

    The power supply issue has been taken care of since I already have replaced it with an new Antex 350 watt Power supply (for a good price as well).

    They had also allowed me to exchange the product I purchased as well. Now I got the MoBo, Processor, and Memory fixed in.

    Now the hardest part for me is sticking the front side power wires into the motherboard; I do mean wires since one of my previous instructor had removed the black casing that grouped them together so I'm having a bit of a tough time getting the Power LED, HD LED, etc. in the right place.

    I'll let you know if anything else comes up on this. Thanks.
  24. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    As long as you are dealing with a standard power supply and a standard motherboard, all non-Dell (nothing against Dell), just making sure all is standard, then you can simply use trial and error.
    First, to find the pins that connect to the on\off switch on your case, you take a screwdriver and touch it against any 2 pins on that bunch of pins. Its usually 2 pins on the end, one on each side, but sometimes it varies. The nice thing is that you wont do any harm in experimenting.
    So hold a flat screwdriver on any 2 pins til you get the pc to start up. Those are for your power on\off. Then you can connect one thing at a time to test and see if its connected right. Eventually you can get it all right. Sometimes its only a matter of reversing a set of connectors.

    The easier way would be to find out the motherboards mfgr and go to their website to get the motherboard manual!
    It seems you have an HP? I dont know, just guessing, but you printed this:
    Model HP- 2037F3 Maybe not a Dell after all? Maybe use google to find out.
  25. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

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