T2385 Croaked!  Help!

By anenigmaticone · 43 replies
Dec 19, 2005
  1. Hello Pros

    I have an emachine T2385. Bought it new 2003. I have never had any problems with it. Recently, when I pressed the power button to turn it on, the power light began blinking rapidly and the cpu began ticking. It's a really fast tick like a stopwatch makes and the LED blinking matches the ticking. I can hear the CPU fan spinning but that's the only thing happening. I removed the cover and disabled the floppy and both cd drives individually, thinking it may be one of them but the ticking continued. It sounds like it's coming from the mob & I'm praying it's not the hard drive. Anyone have any ideas before I take it to the local GeekSquad for a diagnosis?

    My PC's specs are:

    Power Supply: PS, 250 WATT 1670
    Modem: MODEM, V.92 56K 1447
    HDD: HDD, 80 GB 100125
    LAN: LAN, 10/100 Integrated
    CPU Fan Type: Fan, H/SINK:117162CBL01,MPGA,P4P-2.4G,W/ 2296
    ODD1: CDRW, NEXGEN (48X) 2434
    FDD Model: FDD, SFD-321B/LTGNQ
    Video: Video, Integrated
    CPU: CPU, CEL-2.3G/128K/F400,mPGA478,SL6XJ CPEMIN100163
    ODD2: DVD, NEXGEN (16X) FLAT 2510
    Memory: MEM, DDR-RAM 512MB (Max. 2GB) 2155

    Any help is appreciated. :confused:
  2. hewybo

    hewybo TS Maniac Posts: 435


    Better wait for one of the experts around here, but that sounds a lot like a hard drive. You don't say which LED is blinking. Is it the power LED, or the HD LED?
    Also, have you checked your power supply? As I say, I'm not an expert, but I would think that if a PSU was sending uneven voltages, it could do something like this. You don't say if the system boots. Does it? Does it get into the POST at all? All power cables secure? If it doesn't post, I would guess hard drive. Please- wait for a smarter guy. Geek squads, etc., can be expensive, and a smart guy might save you some money. One of 'em will show up soon. Best of luck- hope it's simple. :confused:
  3. anenigmaticone

    anenigmaticone TS Rookie Topic Starter


    Thanks for your reply. I'll try to hang on a bit longer.

    The HD led is what's blinking and it doesn't boot up. It does nothing but tick. I checked all cables and they're secure. I have not checked the power supply (wouldn't know how). Could the ticking come from the mob and the HD be toast? I say that because the noise is coming from the board.

    Thanks again for trying to help me.
  4. hewybo

    hewybo TS Maniac Posts: 435


    As I said, I have limited experience- wish some of the big guns would respond, though some of them might go into a diatribe about e-Machines-
    You say your CPU fan is turning, but that does not rule out the power supply, as the fan will turn at less than full voltage. Your hard drive will not "spin up" without a full 12v. Having said that, and not knowing your system specs, a beginner like me has to stab in the dark. Do you have a friend with a system that might have a spare PSU to try on yours? Trying that first would be the easiest in terms of uninstalling/reinstalling. Also- you might try resetting the CMOS. There are a couple of ways to do this; there may be a jumper on the mobo that you can switch for 10-15 secs, then replace. If you can't find that, or if it's not clearly marked, you can remove the "button" battery for a few minutes (10-15) then replace it. In either case be sure the system is off, unplug the line cord from the wall, and press and hold the on/off switch to drain any residual charge from the system. If you are uncomfortable with these procedures, search this site or google for tutorials.

    If you attempt these, be sure you are grounded; an anti-static wrist strap is best, but you can just grasp a bare metal part of the case while reaching inside.

    In the end, though, if this reset is unsuccessful, you are stuck with finding. or paying for, expert assistance. I wish you good luck; I am also new to this, and this forum has been very helpful to me.

    Where are you, DonNagual??? :eek:
  5. anenigmaticone

    anenigmaticone TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks Again!

    I appreciate your attempts to help a rookie. I'll give your suggestions a try. IF they don't work, or my frustrations get the best of me...... I'll just yield to the GeekSquad.

    Thank you!
  6. hewybo

    hewybo TS Maniac Posts: 435

    one more thing

    I learned that a blown capacitor on the motherboard can also produce that clicking sound, but the processor cannot. As suggested by one of this sites "paladins," roll up a piece of paper, put one end to your ear, then move the other end around inside the case, and isolate the sound. Once you know for certain where the clicking originates, it'll make it easier to diagnose. Just had a thought-DON'T use a stethoscope, etc., you don't wanna be moving a piece of metal around in there. :knock:
    hope this will help. lemme know-
  7. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    hewybo is selling himself short, he has given you good advice!
    Before you do anything ground yourself well, use an antistatic bracelet or always have a hand or arm on the case, then you wont cause an electrostatic shock.

    The only thing i would add about resetting the bios is that usually you have to unplug the main power cord to the pc and any other power going to the motherboard, then take out the coin battery. Then you will find a set of 3 pins right close to the battery, there will be a jumper on the first 2 pins. Move that jumper to the 2nd and 3rd pin for a few minutes then move the jumper back to the first 2 pins, put the battery back in, put power cord back on and try to boot up. That takes care of most motherboards but some, like some Pc chips and some ECS motherboard require you apply power with the jumper on pins 2 and 3. And i dont even recognize your motherboard, i have never heard of Imperial, i thought i had heard of all of them by now.
    Do you have a manual for it? If so check out the bios reset procedure. If not, follow what i said above but dont apply power until you have moved the jumper back to its original place.
    I can help you more but i am very unsure of the sound you are talking about as the sound of ticking is usually a bad hard drive. It sure sounds like that to me but you seem to think its something else and that has me concerned.
    Put your fingers on the hard drive and see if you can "feel" the ticking.
    We need to know for sure where the ticking is coming from.
    While doing all this make sure you have ALL connections on real tight, the ide cables, the cpu fan connection to the motherboard, etc, etc.
    If that fails, unhook the hard drive completely and boot up and go into the bios and set it to boot from your floppy drive. Then put a win98 boot disk in your floppy and see if your pc will boot to dos.

    It is possible that your power supply is bad, they will still try to boot when they are bad so it is possible. But again, need more input on that ticking you are talking about. Its only 250 watt and likely a very inexpensive one, to put it kindly. However, there is still that concern with the ticking noise we have to isolate first!

    You can unscrew the hard drive from the case and have it in your hand so that you can isolate this ticking sound, or let the hard drive rest on the case, just make sure you put a piece of cardboard under it so it doesnt short out!
    If all this fails, then its best to take the motherboard out of its case and take all pci cards, usb items, anything you absolutely dont have to have to boot and set the motherboard on some cardboard, hook up power supply, video, keyboard, mouse and see if it will boot up. If it will then hook up the hard drive.
    If the date changes in your bios that will mean that you have done a good bios reset.
    First we need to definitely isolate that ticking noise and then we can go from there but a bios reset never hurt.
  8. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Sorry, but i hate to hear anyone mention the geek squad.
    You dont need to pay them, you can do it with a bit of help and patience.
  9. Kathleen

    Kathleen TS Rookie

    Just read your post, I'm having the same problem. I replaced the power supply but it's still blinking, etc. I'm going to try nork's suggestion in reply #7 but I was wondering how you finally worked out the problem.

    Thanks in advance for sharing.
  10. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    anenigmaticone should have let us know the results as i was only at the beginning of my diagnosis. He needed to do what i told him and then, if there were no firm results, we would have gone further.
    I gave him instructions that would let us know if there was a hard drive problem, motherboard problem, or power supply. I really needed further info from him to accurately judge and assess the situation.
    So, Kathleen, if you follow the same instructions i can help you out.
    I would like to know the make, model and wattage of your power supply.
    As for E-machines, they are now owned by Gateway and the quality is good.
    Before that they were fine machines for what they were, and that was a low-cost, budget machine with little or no frills. But that doesnt mean they were not good machines as actually they were no worse than HP, Compaq and others!
    Only Dell, Alienware and a few others actually make good pc's and i dont like any Dell pc that uses proprietary parts like mobos and power supplies, so i am not too fond of Dell. Seems to me that i have heard that Dell has stopped doing this but i am not sure on that point.
  11. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Kathleen, i forgot to mention why i wanted to know about your power supply.
    The reason is that some older power supplies are better than some newer ones. I wanted to make sure you have a decent power supply as its slightly possible the power supply you installed isnt good enough for your machine, although its likely ok. A cheap one will be good for a year or so and a good one for about 5 yrs or so. I have been running my 7 yr old enermax power supply almost 24/7 for 7 years!
  12. bohnemeyer

    bohnemeyer TS Rookie

    I have the same problem and a new PS didn't fix it. Any ideas?
  13. AMDIsTheBest010

    AMDIsTheBest010 TS Rookie Posts: 398

    if your system will not boot up and there is noise coming from the power supply then its very likely that your PS is shot if the noise is coming from the HD then its likely that your HD has failed and if that is the case u will prolly need the replace the HD. But havwe an expert look at the computer first you'll thank yourself the headache and frustration
  14. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    anenigmaticone hasnt come and let us know what is going on with his\her machine. Should have done so by now or at least kept in touch.
    bohnemeyer, you should make your own post. Tell us all about your machine, all that you know about it, what os you are running, any extra cards installed, mobo information if you have it, etc, etc. That info can make a great deal of difference when doing diagnostics. Dont forget, we cant even see your machine! Also, we need to know what software you are using as well, even this can make a difference with the diagnosis! As an example, I have seen itunes cause so many problems in so many computers that i basically will have nothing to do with itunes and i tell all my customers the same. There is one good example.
    AMDIsTheBest010, no disrespect intended toward you, but before you can really make a proper diagnosis, you need to know whats in bohnemeyer's machine.
    This is a nice place but some rules need to be made and followed, lol.
    I hope you people take it the right way, what i am saying.
  15. bohnemeyer

    bohnemeyer TS Rookie

    One more comment and then I'll start a new post.

    All drives unplugged; only MB and 4 pin aux power on MB are plugged in. PS has just been replaced and still ticks at 1 per sec (60 cycle).

    no screen, no p.o.s.t.

    I understand your comments nork, I'm a tech myself...just stumped on this one.
  16. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Have you re-set the power supply? Either use a power supply tester or unlpug pc from wall and push the on\off button in for a minute.
    Often thats all thats needed.
    And can you test your ram in another pc to make sure its good?
    Also, using mobo mfgrs instructions, reset the bios. These instructions, as you know, do vary, although its usually removing the battery and moving the jumper over for a minute, as you also know, lol.
    Sorry, gotta go with first things first, the easy stuff, before going forward, as you also know. lol again.
    Triple check all connections as well.
  17. bohnemeyer

    bohnemeyer TS Rookie

    Thx for the help folks. It turned out to be a shorted capacitor on the MB.

    HDD is ok so will go with a new MB.

    thx again1
  18. mousey81

    mousey81 TS Rookie

    hi everyone,

    ive been following this post with interest as having a similar problem with a friends machine.

    replacing the motherboard fixed the problem, only for it to happen again after about 10 reboots of the pc.

    the machine is an E-machines 390 with celeron 2.3 socket 478. replacement mobo is a gigabyte 8s661fxm, machine has 512mb of pc 2100 ram.

    any suggestions - have got a new mobo but dont wanna risk it - was thinking it could be a power supply issue as it is 5 years old, but have been having a few HDD errors before the orignal mobo blew so could possibly be related to that??

  19. vpoindext

    vpoindext TS Rookie

    hey i know this thread has been awhile ago...but i was wondering if someone could tell me where the Power switch, hdd led and power led go on the mother board of the t2385. i dont have the manual and i pulled off the wires and don't remember where they went.. thanks in advance
  20. cptjack

    cptjack TS Rookie

    has anyone found the cause of the problem anenigmaticone has, i have the same.

    vpoindext - if you have the mbem2095impl board. look to the bottom right. the pins are marked. they are all next to each other.
  21. anenigmaticone

    anenigmaticone TS Rookie Topic Starter

    My aplogies friends. Please excuse my ignorance by not following up. I ended up w/ the GeekSquad. They told me it was the board & charged me 8 arms & 12 legs just for diagnostics. Then wanted a more ridiculous price to replace it. I hunted down a barebones system from a link on this page & got back up and running in no time using these FANTASTIC threads. I can't believe how easy it was! Thanks for all of your help! And again, accept my apologies for no follow up! These threads save me routinely! You all are great!
  22. Sandstoneco

    Sandstoneco TS Rookie

    Same eMachines problem, different day

    Hi all, as with everyone else, I know this has drug on for quite awhile, but.....
    My father-in-law brought his eMachine T series because it wouldn't boot. I plugged it in and without even turning it on, the PS fan was running, and the hard drive light was solid amber, but nothing was coming on. I was unable to power down the box from the button. If I unplugged it, the PS fan would stop (of course), but when I plugged back in, was in the same original state as before (PS on, hd light amber, no activity). BTW, I could get the cd drive to work. I don't know if there was power to the motherboard though, because the CPU fan would not start. There are 2 hd's in the box....the original 40G Western Digital, and an additional 160G Maxtor set as slave. BTW - The CPU is a Intel® Celeron® 2.50GHz Processor, 128KB L2 cache & 400MHz FS). Intel chipset 845GV. Now I'm going to sound stupid here, but I'm blonde, and I didn't know what the set the voltage on the PS to. It was set at 115V and I left it there, not wanting to blow the machine up by switching it to 230V. The wonderful User guide said to make sure you had it set to the correct voltage, but not what that voltage was (BTW eMachines support site is awful, and so are there "chat" techs).

    As I used to do tech support, I knew to try the trick to hold in the power button for 8-10 seconds, which should of shut the system down. But, instead, it started the flickering and ticking. I was calling this a "panic" mode, and had to unplug the box to stop it. When I'd plug the box back in, would be back to the original mode (solid amber hd light, PS fan running, CD drive available, but not action from the mother board). I have both the eMachines recovery disks, and a Windows XP home disk, so tried to boot from the CD drive. It wouldn't boot with either. I disconnected the hd's and tried just one, then the other, then just the cd-rom--set different Master-Slave-Master configs. Tried a different IDE cable from the motherboard to hds. At different points I was finally able to power down the hd from the button (even though I don't think the hd was spinning - either of them). I would be able to open the cd drive then, put in the boot disks, and it would spin up, but wouldn't boot the system. The keyboard lights would light up when I turned it on, so there is some power coming from the motherboard.

    I went through this 100 times, with different drive setups. Sometimes I could power down the hd light by the button. I could get it to go into panic mode. Sometimes panic mode would stop on its own. Sometimes I had to unplug it.

    I did pull the CMOS battery, tried another one I had. All same result. Reset the CMOS with the jumper cables.....same result. It will not boot up. No POST beeps, no nothing.

    The resistors on the motherboard all look fine. There was nothing phyically popping out at me that was wrong. I just figured that because the CPU fan would not start, there was no power getting to the motherboard. Now, I just wonder whether it is the incorrect voltage setting (although they've had this box for 2-3 years, and its always been set this way (there was a piece of tape covering it making it impossible to slide the setting to the 230V state.

    First thing I'll do, is change that voltage and see if the CPU fan starts. After reading all of these posts, I will try and boot it up with only the CPU, a DIMM and nothing else (is that right?). I get a green light on my monitor when the power is going to the system, but no video. I didn't see a video card, and am pretty sure its part of the board. I was (and am) going to check the hard drives by attaching them to my working desktop. Anything I'm missing? Anything else I can try. I hate to tell them I couldn't fix it.

    Thanks, and sorry for the terribly long post.
  23. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Sounds to me like you have done a pretty good job of troubleshooting so far.
    First off, its 115 volts so tape it there (good idea).
    It sounds to me like the power supply is shot. That can explain the light on on the motherboard and the keyboard lights going on. The reason is that there are various rails (lines) that carry various voltages on power supplies, doing various jobs and one line can be bad and the rest still good, looking like full power is going to the motherboard when in fact its not at all. So i bet its the power supply, almost like a classic example.
    That is, provided that it isnt something small that has been overlooked but my bet is that you have attended to the little things, like taking out the ram, cleaning the gold contacts with a pencil rubber, taking all pci and agp cards out, doing the same with pencil rubber, checking the other connections, etc.
    If you are still having problems try and borrow a power supply from someone as i do believe that the one you have is bad. Especially if its the power supply that came with the pc when new. They are always cheap, generic units and after a year they have oulived their usefulness and they start to deteriorate in ability, eventually failing.
    You can buy a good power supply at, say, newegg for not a lot of money, around $40. There are likely threads here you can search for that will give you some examples. If not, it can be done here, i have done it a dozen times. I know, last time, Newegg had some fortron power supplies that are good for the bucks invested, and others as well.
    Make sure its the right power supply. I am guessing that you only need a standard P4 power supply, and not one that has sata connections and\or pci-e connections, since this pc is a few years old?
  24. Sandstoneco

    Sandstoneco TS Rookie

    Thanks for the reply

    Thanks Nork. Keep it at 115V? Ok. It still doesn't make a lot of sense to me that it would be the power supply, but your explanation is convincing.

    I will go back through and clean all of those connections. There was a lot of dust and gunk in there.

    thanks again.
  25. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    You're welcome. I know that when there seems to be power to the mobo then we all tend to think we should look elsewhere for the problem.
    But we have to realize there are different rails (lines), 12v+, 12v-, 3.3v + and - and so on. Each of these rails must be within specs and if one goes out then its trouble.
    I have a very good tutorial on power supplies, maybe i should post it, but if you want it just pm or email me and i will see you get it.
    But cheap,generic power supplies are very common and commonly cause the type of probs you have there. I cant say for sure its the source but it sure seems like it from over here, without actually being able to see the pc and do any testing.
    Another thing, you can buy a cheap power supply tester at most pc stores for around $10 or less. A better buy these days is the upgraded tester, its more money but it will also test the newer power supplies with 24 pins as opposed to the 20 pin unit you have there (likely). Of course they charge more but they also do more too, so its your choice. I advise go for the better unit.
    But again, you can simply just borrow a known good power supply and try it in the unit in question.
    Also check the top of the mobo for any loose screws sitting on top and check to make sure all screws are tightened down.
    Let us know what the end result is!
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add your comment to this article

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...