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URGENT!!! Cannot turn on my computer!!!

By i4tunecookiei ยท 32 replies
Mar 29, 2006
  1. This is very URGENT! Please, I'm a student and I have some very important papers in my computer that I have to turn in. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR TIME AND PATIENCE.

    It has been a problem that I've been delaying to deal with. Often times I cannot turn on my computer after a shutdown, but after I wait a while, I can usually get it to start up. Sometimes my computer would take me to the BIOS settings and point out to me that my CPU Frequency is not set correctly and that it's overheating. I have tried looking for what the correct frequency is but I never got to really find out about it. This morning when I tried to turn on my computer, it wouldn't turn on. It goes sorta like this:

    POWER ON - FANS SPIN, working properly - AND THEN YOU HEAR CLICK CLICK (the clicking sound you hear when you restart your computer), AND THE COMPUTER SEEMS TO BE RESTARTING AGAIN AND AGAIN, ALL THIS TIME THE MONITOR WOULD NOT TURN ON. I dunno what the problem is. Some people say it's bad ram, so I tried taking out my ram sticks, and i tried unplugging my harddrives and cd drives, it's not those, i think it is the CPU itself that is failing to start.

    I've searched several forums, but I cannot locate anyone with the same problems as me, but I find some dicussions about "jumpers" and "clock speed" that look sort of like mine but it's not completely similar. i dunno what they are, i'm jus giving you clues. My friend put together this computer for me, but i don't think he has set the BIOS settings correctly to match my hardware, so I have been experiencing problems like this quite often. I can leave my computer on and it wouldn't go to a blue screen, but if i try to download something and i leave it on overnight, next morning i find it blue saying something about NTFS.sys....but that's not the problem right now, again, i'm jus giving u clues...please tell me if there's anything i can do to the cpu or anything to get it to turn back on, i have a very important paper that i need to turn in to my class. THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR HELP AND PATIENCE. i'm crying for help..really.

  2. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Hello and welcome to Techspot.

    Turn off your computer and unplug it from the mains.

    Open your case and take out the cmos battery, it`s around the size of a dime and will be quite shiny. Leave it out for a few minutes and then replace it.

    This will clear your cmos and set your bios to the default settings.

    Reconnect your computer to the mains, leaving the case open for now.

    See if you can boot your computer.

    Regards Howard :wave: :wave:
  3. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Unfortunately Ricky it sounds like a HDD failure.
    Can you boot into the BIOS menu? Press the DEL key as soon as you power up.
    If you can, then set BIOS to fail safe defaults, save and exit. Try to boot normal.

    You must have the RAM installed (at least one stick)before you can boot into BIOS and the HDD connected before you can boot normally . But leave anything else unconnected for now (DVD or CD , and peripheral cards,, sound, TV etc.)

    It may just be a power supply failure but try this first.

    Let us know what happens.

    Edit: Howard beats me again. :blush:
  4. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    thank you guys

    howard_hopkinso: i took out the battery for a few minutes and it still won't turn on, the same thing happens, it sounds like it's clicking and restarting constantly, and the CD-ROM lights keep on blinking like how they are whenever you turn on the computer.

    kirock: i don't think it's the harddrive, because i have another harddrive and i tried to put that in and plug that in instead of my original one, but it still doesn't work. computer won't turn on. i can't get into the BIOS because the monitor LED light is red(off) i guess the monitor is just not getting the signal to turn on!

    THANK YOU GUYS! i'm still trying!
  5. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Sounds like a dead psu/bad mobo/bad cpu to me.

    Maybe you should to contact the friend who built the computer for you.

    Regards Howard :)
  6. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    well i lost contact wid my friend since he moved to another country
    wats a psu, wats a mobo
    is there anything i can try?
  7. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Psu=Power supply unit.


    You need to either diagnose which hardware is bad yourself, or take the computer to a pc repair shop.

    Regards Howard :)
  8. Peddant

    Peddant TS Rookie Posts: 1,446

  9. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Howard is correct, it can be the PSU/mobo/CPU, but if it is a bad PSU then you're just doing more damage to your system by turning it on. I'd stop trying to fix for now until you can swap in another PSU so you're sure it's not at fault and you're not killing your HDD and mobo/CPU circuits.

    Take care for now.
  10. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    how do i know if my power supply is bad, it works ok, supplies power i think

    my powersupply says "Power Man, Model No: FSP300-60BT(12V) AC INPUT: 115/230V-10/5A,60/50Hz...." need more info?

    uhhh i used to have this program in my computer that tells me the specs
    but now i can't turn it on
    so i'll read specs off the motherboard and the cards themselves...

    i have an ASUS AS99127F chip on my motherboard..
    i dunno where the cpu is but i kno it's intel pentium 1.6 or 1.7 ghz
    i dun think u need to kno wat kind of video cards i have and all that...
    my HDD is 200GB maxtor 7200rpm
    i have a dvd player and a cd-rw
    i see a fan on my power supply, on top and a big one on my motherboard

    tell me where to look if u need more info

    and tell me how i can diagnose wat hardware is failing me

    yes, i'm taking my harddrive to my neighbor's, who'll be home soon, i have another harddrive that i used to use in this compuer, i'm putting it in to test out the results of all this testing
  11. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Please note. This is not a critisism, but if you don`t know where your cpu is, I don`t advise you to start trying to diagnose your problem.

    This is a major hardware failure of some description, and if you don`t know much about the insides of computers, you can end up doing more harm than good.

    As kirock said. You shouldn`t even be trying to turn your computer on at the moment, as this might cause further damage.

    Either get someone who knows about computer hardware to have a look at it, or take it to a pc repair shop.

    I still think it`s either a bad psu/bad mobo/bad cpu.

    Regards Howard :)
  12. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    OK, it is hard to diagnose the PSU, unless you have a voltmeter, even then unless it's underload the voltages can look ok. Why the PSU is important is this provides all the power to the computer and has 3 main rail voltages, 3.3V, 5V and 12V. The 12V output (rail) powers all the fans and motors (HDD, DVD, CD), if this is low (like 10Volts or even 11volts) your HDD won't spin to the correct speed then the tracking mechanism won't be able to read the HDD. It will continue to "hunt", making the clicking sounds you described! A failing HDD can make those clicking sounds over and over again too.

    This is why I said HDD failure, but as you describe your problem more it very well may be the PSU and specifically the 12V rail.

    Sometimes by disconnecting all other loads, like DVD, CD and second HDD you can get a dieing PSU to run ok long enough to boot and recover data. Try that.
    Do you see any fans come on when yoo power up?
  13. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    sorry, i'm not an expert in computers, but i want to try

    i tried unplugging the power from the cd's and errything, leaving only the harddrive, but the same thing occurs. Yes, fans DO go on. all of them.
  14. sugarfiend

    sugarfiend TS Rookie

    I have a similar problem - I tried installing a new video card and the computer wouldn't turn on. The fans spun but the hard drive didn't spin up. I then found out that the vid card wasn't plugged all the way in, so I turned the computer off (the button didn't work so I had to use the switch in the back), pushed it in, and tried the on/off button. Nothing happened. I tried using my old video card but that didn't work either. The ethernet light blinks though, when the computer is plugged in. So far I've discovered that the fans will spin up only when there is NO video card in it.

    So far I've heard that either my power supply has gone weird (dunno since the fans do work in certain situations..) or that my motherboard's bad. I know I have a nice motherboard, even if I don't know exactly what it is (my friend built it for me). I mentioned to the tech guy that it's got a red slot for the video card and he went, "Oooh.." So yeah, I would prefer not to replace the motherboard, but I honestly don't know what's wrong with it...
  15. gmcerlan

    gmcerlan TS Rookie

    I am also facing the same problem except nothing is turning on no matter what I do. My new mobo that I ordered from newegg arrived today and after hooking back up, nothing still happened. I thought it was the PSU, but I tried two different ones with no success. Nothing would even turn on. The only thing that lights up was the power LED on the mobo itself, but as far as the fans or the HDD, NOTHING. So I have knocked out the possibility of it being a mobo or PSU problem. I read above that it could be a CPU issue. How would the CPU affect the startup of the computer? If it was the CPU, shouldn't the heatsink or any fan atleast try to turn on? I have an above average understanding of computers and have tried everything the PREVIOUS posts have suggested. I'm totally lost and open to any suggestions. Thanks.

    Also, is there a way to test the CPU?
  16. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    always make sure when you service the pc internals you unplug it from the mains (wall outlet) and ground yourself (touch the edge of teh case) or risk shorting something

    sugarfiend: if you didnt do as above, most likely iether your mobo's shot or your vid card, or both. pull out your vid card and test it on another machine that is the only way to tell if it still works. take a wif and smell if anything has burnt off in your system

    i4tunecookiei: if you realy want to test the psu if its the problem, then go get yourself a new good quality one from the shops that is the same connections as the existing, with same or better wattage rating.. do you see a led light on your mobo somwhere? do you see any signs of physical damage (scorch marks etc) on your mobo and if anything smells wierd particularly like burnt smell or something?

    gmcerlan:unfortunatly there is no risk free or easy way of testing the cpu, its just swaping/putting it with another compatible mobo etc. If you know how to remove the CPU safely and also have some thermal grease on you, then you can pull it out and inspect the pins if they're damaged or not.

    I suggest if you havn't tried already, to reseat and double check everythings ok, and check that the power switch/reset switch/leds is connected to the right pins on your mobo, and make sure that all cables from the psu are pluged into their designated spots (drives, mobo rail, 4 pin extra, vid card etc..)

    and please, some pc specs would be nice....
  17. Tedster

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

    I highly suggest reading up on the basics of computers before even attempting to do anything. You can really screw things up, especially if you don't know what a CPU is.
  18. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    yes i do see the light on my motherboard
    i have a power supply, i'm going to try it, but it seems pretty difficult to replace. all the wires and all that....k let me try i'll get back to you.
  19. sugarfiend

    sugarfiend TS Rookie

    I sure did unplug the computer before I put the vid card in, and I ground myself on anything or everything if there's even a slight chance of me zapping something. (I even do it while folding my laundry so I don't get a huge zap, LOL.)

    I've tried both the old and new video cards, and none of them work. The computer fans only turn on when there's no video card installed at all (my old one was a 32MB Nvidia and the new one is a 64MB Nvidia GE MX400, and I only know because I just got it on ebay, LOL).

    My friend who built the computer is convinced that I'm just not putting the video card in all the way, or something's crooked. He seems confident that the entire motherboard doesn't need replacing...maybe just the video card slot at worst. It's an MSI motherboard (AMD Athlon sounds familiar) and I don't know the other stats for it. I don't smell anything funky, although I admittedly have a bad sense of smell, LOL. I still can't decide whether hard drives are starting up because the fans are so loud when it boots up. My friend says that they are, and that the computer isn't making the typical booting up sounds because there's no video card in it. When I switch it off (while there's no vid card installed and the fans are running) I do hear an electronic click from inside the computer that sounds like something other than the fans is powering down.

    I'm having someone from the tech dept look at the computer next Monday. Technically they aren't allowed to fix hardware problems, but I'd just like to know what's wrong so I don't have to pay $70 for some repair place to do a diagnostic test. The tech guy I talked to, my friend who built my computer, and my cousin all doubt that it's really the motherboard. My ex-bf thinks differently, but he's always been paranoid, LOL. We'll see, I suppose...

  20. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Ok my turn again.

    Sugarfiend: Buy a new PSU, your's is dead. If you can borrow one from a friend, do it to prove me right first.

    gmcerlan: You haven't convinced me it's not a PSU issue yet. What kind of PSU did you replace it with? Need some specs on your stuff. Mobo make/model/video card PSU wattage. A crappy PSU replaced with a crappy PSU is not getting you anywhere. One thing to check is the mobo mounting. So often ppl over look this and inadvertently ground the mobo. This is effectively shorting the PSU to ground. :dead: Check that it is clear of the case and the mounting screws are not causing it to short to the case.

    i4tunecookiei: Are you still alive there buddy? Haven't electricuted yourself yet right? Did you get that PSU installed yet? My money is still on the PSU for your #1 problem. If not, then the prob is in this order:
    2) HDD failure, most likely in the reading head, thus the clicking and hunting noises.
    3) a defective mobo (this could cause any type of sympton).
    4) CPU failure which is causing the PSU to be pulled to ground and thus bringing us back to 1.

    Have a good day, must get back to work now. I'll check in again when I get home.

  21. sugarfiend

    sugarfiend TS Rookie

    Thanks for your input, but I just had a question - how can the PSU be dead if the fans turn on...sometimes? Is it a power allocation problem? There's a small red switch next to the outlet plug that says 115 and 230 - my friend said that I want 115 but I did try it with 230 and it didn't work with the video card in it anyway...
  22. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    thank u for the concern, yes i'm well alive
    i had another power supply so i tried putting that in, but the connectors don't match my motherboard, so i went to get another one. this one has most of the things that connect to my stuff and motherboard, but it's missing one. i might as well ask here before i get another one, there is a 20 dot place (10 dots on each row, 2 rows) that i'm supposed to connect to the power supply on my motherboard, but i don't have that on my new power supply. should i go get another one (the person assured me that this would work, i showed him my old power supply and he said this would work...>:[ ), or is there something i don't know.
  23. gmcerlan

    gmcerlan TS Rookie

    My current specs are as follows:

    Super-Flower 520W Triple-Fan Silent ATX P4 Power Supply TT-520SS
    AMD Athlon 64 3400+ Clawhammer
    ASUS K8N Socket 754 NVIDIA nForce3 250 ATX AMD Motherboard
    ARCTIC COOLING 90mm Cooling Fan/Heatsink
    VGA|PNY 6600GT 128M R
    CORSAIR ValueSelect 1GB 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400
    FAN COOLINGFAN MASSCOOL (I have 2 of these)
    Seagate Barracuda 7200.8 ST3250823AS 250GB 7200 RPM Serial ATA150
    Mad Dog Dvd Player Driver
    Mad Dog CD Burner Drive
    Windows XP Profesional sp2

    I have tried the following:
    Brand New Antec SmartPower 2.0 SP-350 350W PSU
    Brand New AMD Sempron 2800+
    Brand New Heatsink
    Brand New ASUS K8N Socket 754 NVIDIA nForce3 250 ATX AMD Motherboard (though I believe it was Dead on Arrival)

    Originally, I had a 'SOLTEK SL-K8AN2E-GR Socket 754 NVIDIA nForce3 250Gb ATX AMD' and when the computer would not start, I thought it was the mobo so I got a 'ASUS K8N Socket 754 NVIDIA nForce3 250 ATX AMD Motherboard'. I received it yesterday and after I hooked everything up, NOTHING! Computer nor any fans would start up (thought the power LED on mobo did turn on). Before I concluded that my new mobo was DOA, I tried putting in the new components above. Same thing. Computer would not turn on.

    I called up Newegg and they issued me a refund so now I need to get a new mobo for a 754 socket type processor. ANY SUGGESTIONS? I am looking at the following:

    ASUS K8N Socket 754 NVIDIA nForce3 250 ATX AMD Motherboard

    BIOSTAR TForce6100 Socket 754 NVIDIA GeForce 6100 Micro ATX AMD

    I was also thinking about replacing the PSU with this one:
    Thermaltake TR2 W0070 430W Power Supply

    Any suggestions or comments would be extremely helpful. I am going to wait till tomorrow before placing any orders. Oh and I do play games like Doom 3, Rome Total War, and Call of Duty 2.
  24. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    sugarfiend: That's because the motors (HDD, CD/DVD) and fans run on 12Volts and the rest of the actual electronics run on 5 and 3.3Volts. So PSU have 3 main output "rails" for those voltages, and 2 others but we don't need to discuss those. The thing is each of these rails are driven by sperate circuits in the PSU, so any one of them or all can fail. You have a problem with the 5Volt rail specifically. You have no power to any of your electronics. Sympton: dead computer with fans running. Recommendation: Replace PSU with at least a 450W unit. Look for 22Amps minimum on the 12V rail. (these specs are the label on the side of the PSU).

    i4tunecookiei: Very glad to hear that and hope you like my humour. Ok the mobo connector you're referring to is the standard ATX form 20 pin connector. Any common ATX PSU WILL have a 20pin motherboard(mobo) connector. Some higher end PSU will have a 24 pin mobo conn. to match higher end mobos, but these usually have a detachable 4pin connector. Take a look at the links below. Does your new PSU look like these?

    gmcerlan: This is your pathetic PSU and you don't think there's a problem here? :haha: I blew up my 450W SmartPower within the first week after building my present rig!!! My Specs are in my signature (click on my name) and are very much the same as yours.

    This is what I replaced it with:
    I bought the 450W ModStream and wish I bought the 520W because I'm going SLI soon.
    Recommendation: All of you very very most likely, to best of my ability to troubleshoot like this, need to buy a new PSU.

    Let me know how it goes folks.
    Cheers, and take care.
  25. i4tunecookiei

    i4tunecookiei TS Rookie Topic Starter

    yes, i've installed my power supply. i figured out how to do it. but IT STILL DOESN'T WORK!!!

    we're down to the MOBO then..possibly the CPU. according to you experts.

    perhaps i should get a new motherboard. but i don't smell anything odd, and i don't see anything broken on the motherboard. can a motherboard go bad like that? my computer isn't old at all. i'd say, less than a year?
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