POST beeping

By DarrylJ ยท 8 replies
Dec 5, 2004
  1. I have an older computer -- ASUS board, AMD 600 -- that has recently developed an interesting feature. When we boot it up, it seems to run through every POST code beep error in the book. And yet, beeping aside, everything seems to work fine once it has finished beeping at us.

    The only things I have noticed is that the main hard disk has started to develope bad sectors. Not a lot. There were none, there may be four or five now.

    The BIOS settings are fine; the clock shows the correct time and date.

    Does anyone have an idea of what all the beeping might indicate? I just know that the whole system is going to come to a crashing halt if left uncorrected, but it's not a system that gets used enough to justify the cost of a new system.

    Thanks for any ideas you can offer.
  2. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    First you will need to find out what type of bios you are using I.E Award/IBM/Phoenix etc.

    Then listen very carefully to the sequence of beeps and make a note.

    Once you know these two pieces of imformation you may want to take a look at the beep code list in this thread

    I hope this helps.

    Regards Howard [​IMG]
  3. DarrylJ

    DarrylJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    It is an AMI BIOS. (Sorry, I wrote Award the first time. [slaps head])

    But the sequence of beeps is so long and varied that it would take me a month to get it all sorted out. I was just wondering if this sort of "every beep code possible" would indicate a specific error: like a major motherboard component. Or perhaps something as simple as a bad stick of RAM might cause the BIOS to report all the possible errors.

    Certainly, if I do manage to separate the various sequences into separate errors, it will tell me that everything is wrong. The fact the computer -- so far -- works perfectly tells me that everything is not wrong. Something is not right; but it can't be everything wrong, or surely the computer wouldn't work without reporting any errors once it got past the POST.

    I can understand it if no one has run into this problem before. I've seen my share of computers that report one error during POST; but I've never encountered one that report so many of them (and still worked).

  4. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,094

    You can definitely receive more than one error. A failing power supply could cause errors in many different components. I have had multiple errors on a TH-7.
    Anyway given the age of your equipment it is possible some parts of the system could be just wearing out.
    Can you try swapping a power supply ?
    Do you know the bios is the latest or last?
  5. DarrylJ

    DarrylJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The suggestion of the PS unit starting to go makes a certain amount of sense. I didn't post this info originally, but for a while there, the computer was turning itself on and off again (usually in the middle of the night when I was trying to sleep.)

    When I went in to my local shop to see about a new PS unit (since I couldn't think of anything else that would cause the computer to be turning on and off randomly), the techie suggested that it might be something else and that I should just turn off the main power at the power bar to prevent the computer from "acting up".

    The computer itself is about four or five years old -- as you could probably guess by the AMD 600 CPU. It was almost state of the art back then. But it gets very little use -- being only used for some email and a bit of web browsing by my wife.

    I may just bite the bullet and try out a new PS and see what that does, though. Can't hurt.

  6. Liquidlen

    Liquidlen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,094

    You will have to decide on how much you spend on buying parts . There are new machines in the $350.00 range .
    However, I also thought it might be a good idea to pull your Ram , any cards and even the cpu ,heatsink, and give them a good cleaning, including the Mb .Dust and oxidation could be an issue , and an inexpensive fix.
    Let us know how it works out.
  7. DarrylJ

    DarrylJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Pulling out the cards was the first thing I tried. Used a soft white eraser on all the contacts to clean them off, cleaned out all the fans and heatsinks, even left a couple of cards out when I reassembled to see if it made any difference -- only video card installed. Still beeps.

    There's only one stick of RAM, so cleaning the contacts was about all I could do with that.

    I put the NIC and the soundcard back in. No better and no worse.

    The computer has now stopped doing all the various beep combinations and is now doing it's best "ambulance" beep BEEP beep BEEP routine. Something has obviously changed. The beeping is now continuous, even after Windows starts up and I open an application. It used to just be during the POST process and stopped once Windows started up.

  8. DarrylJ

    DarrylJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    For those who like the loose ends all tied up.

    My local store had a techie in it who wasn't busy, so we walked through a whole sequence of diagnostics. New PS. New RAM, new video.

    Turned out to be a defective voltage regulator on the mb. He's in the process of checking to see what they've got in stock in the way of old mb's that I can use the cpu with.

    Thanks for everyone's thoughts,
  9. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Glad you`ve got to the bottom of the problem, and thanks for letting us know.

    Regards and good luck Howard [​IMG]
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