Here's an interesting problem. I just put together another PC, and it works. Wonderfully. With one exception.
When I turn it on it does it's DOS thing with the white text. It says "Initialising plug and play cards", then "PNP Init completed". Then it sticks. The white underscore is still flashing, and I can enter BIOS from that point but it refuses to boot further.
Here's the interesting bit. If I press reset at this point, it boots normally and all is well. Any subsequent restarts are normal. Just from a cold start.
So, I tried disabling the quick startup system test in BIOS, so it counts through the RAM and takes a while (512MB). However, once it hits 540MB (?) it goes back to zero without hesitation and starts counting over again. It's like an endless loop. Pressing escape to exit this test results in a normal startup.
Is it a problem with the RAM, graphics card or motherboard?
Thanks for any help - it will be greatly appreciated!
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I had a similar problem before, I had an OLD (Very OLD) hard drive in my computer, the computer was posting faster then the hard drive could initialise. When I removed that hard drive all was fine. So probably you have some device that is taking a long time to init. See if you can find what device is causing your problem and remove it.
That looks like it, but surely once the graphics card has initialised, it should continue booting up?
I am worried about the RAM doing that - does it means it's a bad RAM module?
Thanks for the quick response!
How many times have you let the RAM count? I've seen systems that count the RAM 3 times.
I don't see the freez being caused by the video card. The vid card is the first thing to init, It wouldn't even POST if that was the problem. Look to something slower in you computer, Like a HD or a CD drive or a ZIP drive. Open it up and listen see if you can hear something spining up near the end of the post. Your computer could also be running low on power (power supply) and maybe can init everything at once. ( not sure if that could really happen just a thought.)
It may help if I gave you a complete breakdown of everything that's in this system.
- AMD Athlon XP2200+ 1.8GHz
- Asus A7V8X-X KT400 motherboard
- 512MB PC2700 DDR RAM
- MSI GeForce4 MX440 AGP8X 64MB graphics card
- IBM Deskstar 80GB 7200rpm ATA133 hard drive
- LiteOn 16X DVD-ROM
- LiteOn 52x CD-RW drive
- Sony floppy drive
- Generic PCI modem
It's all running on a 350W PSU.
I didn't let it count the RAM three times - I will try that. I think it's the graphics card because it "freezes" after initialising the card.
Any other ideas for a cure? Isn't there some way I can tell BIOS to wait for a few seconds or something?
I don't see anything in the list that should be causing this problem. I would rip everything out but the esecials. SO keep the vid card, hd and try and boot. you don't need to remove things (unless it's a card "modem") just unplug them. then add one device at a time and see when it starts to fail.
Originally Posted by rlegault
Well, joking aside, you only need to have the Video Card, RAM, CPU, and keyboard plugged in to get past the POST. A Hard Drive is not nessicary."A beginning is the time for taking the most delicate care that the balances are correct."
- Frank Herbert, Dune
My dual-CPU system refused to cold boot a while back. Problem seems to have fixed itself. I would boot and nothing would POST but all the fans and gizmos came on. After letting it sit on like this for a few minutes I'd hit the reboot and it would boot normally. Maybe because it's the summer that it isn't doing this anymore, I'm not sure.
Originally Posted by rallynavvie
That is why it worked, everything was good in its life"A beginning is the time for taking the most delicate care that the balances are correct."
- Frank Herbert, Dune
Originally Posted by Solarjetman
Back to the topic...It sounds like a bad stick of RAM or the DIMM slot is bad,try another slot and clean the RAM contacts.You might also clean the videocard contacts and use a can of comp. air to clean all the AGP and PCI slots.
Try an easy one first before you reboot.
Folllow the directions for your motherboard to reset your system BIOS (in some cases its remove battery, jumper, replace battery, move jumper, etc)
You would be surprised.......
I had a machine that would refuse to boot. It always scans the network card before trying to boot from the hard drive, and one day it just started locking up while pinging the network.
One bios reset later and it works fine.......
My old AMD K6-2 system used to count it's ram three times!
I nailed the problem - by replacing the MSI card with a spare ELSA card. It's a GeForce 2 MX400, and the boot problems disappeared. Put the MSI card back in, it misbehaves again.
So, it's a faulty graphics card. Back it goes, for a new one.
The new PC is ticking along just perfectly now.
Thanks for all the suggestions. Nice to know I can get help when I need it most.
Take it easy,