System locks after 15 seconds no matter what I boot from... HELP!

Posted on 2003-03-28
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-26
Hi! Just built a new system. Here are some specs:

Intel Celeron 1.8 GHz
Soyo P4VDA board
Western Digital 80 GB HDD
nVidia GeForce 3 Ti200
Soundblaster Live MP3+
512MB PNY PC2100 DDR Memory
350W PSU
WinXP Pro

If I left out anything, please let me know!  Now, on to my issue.

Whenever I try to boot the system, after about 15 seconds it hard locks. The media type has no bearing on this problem at all... floppy, CDROM, HDD... it's all the same. It does NOT display this symptom in BIOS. My inital thought was, naturally, heat. I've got one of those spiffy Thermaltake heatsink/coolers that runs at 6000 RPM. I checked my temp in BIOS, and the CPU sits steady at 50C with the ambient temp steady at 34C. I've tried pulling the board out of the system and getting everything back together to make sure it wasn't something with the case, but I get the same problem. The motherboard and processor were purchased new. All other components were pulled from a working system. So far, no one has been able to offer any help at all. I've been trying to solve this for 2 weeks. Someone *HAS* to know what's going on! All advice will be greatly appreciated, and if anyone needs more info, please do not hesitate to ask. Thanks!
Question by:Erik78
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Expert Comment

ID: 8229425
That I find weird.

Since all the other stuff except MB and CPU were taken from a working PC, I would recommend you try the processor on another PC and then the Motherboard. It could be that some other part of your motherboard is frying, such as the Nortbridge (the one with a big heatsink or a fan, not to be confused with the processor). I would say the best solution would be to try the motherboard on another PC.

Does it always freeze after 15 seconds (Not counting BIOS)? Try to see when exactly it freezes, such as on accessing media, etc...
LVL 40

Assisted Solution

by:Kyle Abrahams
Kyle Abrahams earned 225 total points
ID: 8229492
Try normal troubleshooting, rip one piece out at a time and reboot till it boots normally.

It could be a conflict AFTER bios is posted, or when it's trying to load your drivers.  Do you get this problem if you boot from a floppy/cd rom?

Author Comment

ID: 8229698
A little more info: I also checked the temp of the Northbridge chipset, and it's about 35C, so no troubles there. No part of the system "feels" hot. It seems to lock at *around* the same place with each type of media. It seems to be more of a time thing than an access issue. If I try to boot off of the XP CDROM, I get to the "Setup is inspecting..." screen. A floppy makes it to the "This driver is provided by Oak..." section.  The HDD doesn't even make it it the XP splash screen usually, although *ONCE* it made it to a stop error. As far as basic troubleshooting, I've only got memory, processor and video hooked up. I can't strip it down any further and expect it to post, can I? Correct me if I'm wrong!
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Expert Comment

ID: 8231541
What still worries me is the Motherboard. Try to replace it with another one, or put it in another working PC.

Expert Comment

ID: 8231555
This is from the Soyo tech support. Hope it might help:


My system intermittently locks up, very unstable


1. check the CPU temp. the CPU might be overheating.
2. check the CPU FAN if it is defective or see if the CPU fan is in contact with the CPU.
3. add heat paste on the CPU. (applicable only for K7 M/B)
4. do not overclock your CPU
5. check the specification of the memory module, maybe the M/B do not support it.
6. go to BIOS setup and load fail safe settings
7. check website for latest bios update
8. check website for FAQ's regarding instability issue
9. change the memory module or CPU

LVL 40

Accepted Solution

Kyle Abrahams earned 225 total points
ID: 8232536
Try taking out the memory and video, see if the mobo beeps.  If it doesn't then you know it the mobo for sure.  Then try without the ram and see if it beeps, then put the mobo back in.

Expert Comment

ID: 8233243
another thing to check would be the PSU..

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