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Bringing a 486 DX66 back to life!

Posted on 1998-08-05
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Last Modified: 2006-11-17
I purchased a barebones pentium computer for my daughter from SurplusAuction, and installed the CD Rom, Hard Drive, memory, and Floppy from her old 486 into it and it is running great.  Now I am trying to put the 486 back together so Grandma and Grandpa can get on the internet.  I have a new Hard Drive, a new 3.5" floppy drive, a new CD Rom, new 16 megs of memory.  I have hooked up everything correctly, I believe, but the sucker won't boot.  I have used a Win 95 startup disk as a boot disk, but the system won't try to boot from the floppy.  The floppy light is on constantly.  I get nothing on the screen.  I think I have the cable connected properly.  If I switch the cable on the floppy, I don't get a light, so I am guessing it is connected correctly. What should I try next.
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Question by:kencam
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deferkra earned 200 total points
ID: 1020333
Actually, having the light on constatly is a very good sign that you DO have the floppy drive in backwards.

Also, you said you have NEW memory?  Better not be EDO...the 486 board won't support it.  Try swapping the memory between the Pentium and 486 and see what happens.

The only other thing that will prevent your PC from showing anything on the screen is the video card is loose.  Make sure it's in there tight.  

To help troubleshooting:  your PC beeps when it's booted to say how it is running.  One beep usually means everything is ok.  More than that and you have trouble.  Check your motherboard manual if the above fixes don't work, and see what the beeps are saying.


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Expert Comment

by:daweid
ID: 1020334
HI, You may check your m/b battery first, than the video card( dead or not), than the CMOS setting to setup default, it might solve the problem.
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Expert Comment

by:deferkra
ID: 1020335
apparently my answer solved his problem.  How would you check a battery like that?  You'd need to take it into an electronics store, or hopefully you have a multimeter handy...
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by:kencam
ID: 1020336
I don't know if the battery is dead or not, I have a new battery to instal, but don't know when I will have the time to set it all up again to test it out.  Thanks for the advice.

Kent
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by:kencam
ID: 1020337
I have listened to the beeps, and there is a long and two shorts, but my manual is silent on the meaning.
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Expert Comment

by:deferkra
ID: 1020338
you appear to have 'net access, you could look up your motherboard maker, or call their support line.
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by:kencam
ID: 1020339
I will give that a try, I guess I assumed that they were such an old company, that they were no longer around.  Thanks for pointing out the obvious!!  *Grin*
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