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NO boot, NO video, NO beeps ... is it a BIOS virus?

Posted on 2004-04-15
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-25
Hello from IlkaTec
So here comes the tough one:
The computer M.B. WAS!!!! an ASUS A7V333 with two types of chipsets inside, the one is named VIA KT333 and the other is named VIA VT8233A. I don't really know which one is the BIOS but I think it doesn't, mean much since the damage is done. This is the story:
Story N° 1: The PC was just working fine up until my son told me that it was not functioning anymore. I found out, and thus thought, that the reason was a bended pin on the VGA cable socket touching the ground. I straighten the pin and plugged it back, but nothing happened. The PC was really dead. NO boot, NO video, NO beeps,... nothing. Opening the case I noticed that the RAM voltage supply LED was ON. The PS fan and CPU fan were running. Took all cards off including the VGA card, the RAM and unhooked the Hard disk and CD drive. Turned ON but no differences. I also reset the BIOS but still nothing. After I checked the output voltages of the PS (they seemed to be all OK) I started replacing the RAM and turned ON but nothing. Changed the RAM stick but still nothing. I gave up and ...
STORY N° 2: took out the other perfectly functioning computer. The motherboard in this case is an A-OPEN AX34 equipped with a Pentium III 800 Mhz. with chipsets VIA vt82C694X and a VIA VT82C686A. Took the Hard disk previously mounted on the ASUS and hooked it to this one. Booted up and after the automatic windows configuration to the new hardware, everything seemed to function well until Windows started hanging and an error message showed up. I then turned off the PC and turned back ON but ... once again nothing happened. The same ASUS defects were present.  NO boot, NO video, NO beeps. The fans were running etc.
It would seem that I had to do with a PC killer Hard disk.
What I think may have happened is that some kind of virus, present in that HD would in some way  crash the bios but in such case why would the bios not function even if I reset the bios.
What would I be asking for?
Is there anyway that I can re-Flash the bios (since they can not be removed from the mobo, they in fact, are soldered on Board).
I even tried to put a Floppy with the bios flash update but it seems that even if I hear the Floppy metal protection being removed inside the Floppy drive, the disk is not read as I do not see the floppy drive LED light.
Is there any particular procedure on doing so?
Do you people know of any way to restore at least one of the computers?
Well thanks in advance to whom may take the bother to answer.
Question by:ilkatec
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LVL 69

Expert Comment

ID: 10836285
With WinXP and Win2K, you cannot just take a hard drive from one machine and install it in another.  What you need to do is a repair install to make sure the IDE and video drivers are present.  How to do it: http://www.dougknox.com/xp/tips/xp_repair_install.htm 
LVL 69

Expert Comment

ID: 10836307
For your faulty pc that started this wonderful story, the causes could be:

- inadequate or faulty power supply
- bad connections
- faulty video card
- bad RAM
- bad cpu
- bad motherboard

To troubleshoot this, I recommend stripping down the pc to the bare essentials: install one stick of RAM, the cpu, and the video card, and reset the BIOS after installing the cpu.  Do not include hard disks, other PCI cards, or other peripherals.

Expert Comment

ID: 10836835
well regaurding the via chips those are the chips that make up the motherboard chipset....the VIAtech i think ist he company name niether are your bios.....

2) in this instance with a mobo that has via chipset and move the harddrive to antoerh via chipset board chances are the os will boot fine... it has to do with the ide controler drivers being loaded and when they dont work because they are a diffrent brand then things act funny........

3) i dont think its a virus in your bios

but i do recomend stripping out all in yor computer... except i would remove EVERYTHING

do not have ANY ram in the board no hard drive no floppy no cd roms no cards nothing.......... no your computer will not boot like this but..... you will get a post code (your computer will beep at you like crazy like its about to blow up)  it wont though dont worry.... if you hear the post code then you know you got a working cpu and mobo.... next start puttingin the ram..... boot...post code? good now video card.... boot Post code?     good now floppy drive..... boot..... (at this point with a ram and video card and floppy drive installed you should just hear a single beep showing that you have posted..... if you get that then step though each piece of hardware install it then boot and see if it boots...when you get to the one that stops it form booting you know waht your problem is..............   (im going to guess here you have a bad hard drive)
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Author Comment

ID: 10840906
I guess I was not clear enough but trying to not repeat my self I would place in evidence what I already said in my post.
I have taken everything off The Mother Board was "naked" nothing attached besides the CPU and the power supply cable from the PS. NOTHING happens, NOT even a small tiny little beep NOTHING at all on both computers.
I tried again by placing a known functioning RAM stick but again nothing.
I even tried connecting another PS which I borrowed from a functioning computer but again nothing.
The only thing I didn't tried yet is to replace the CPU with a known functioning one but unfortunately I do not have the availability of another CPU that fits into those sockets, even though I find it pretty strange that the CPU's on both computers went dead but of course "you never know".
LVL 69

Expert Comment

ID: 10842442
There is no way a virus can affect your hardware.  A faulty hard drive with a short might affect your second system.  Did you try putting the original disk back in the second system and boot from it?  Reset the BIOS if it doesn't - there is no reason why the original disk in the second machine should not work, unless you zapped it with static electricity while working in it.

Author Comment

ID: 10848625
First of all I wish to thank you people for your interrest.
I wouldn't exclude the possibility that the Hard Disk has in some way suffered a short circuit caused by the shorted VGA pin and that afterwards the HD could absorb more current than it should thus triggering some kind of over absorption on the MoBo.
Anyway I would like to make the extreme effort to flash the BIOS but don't really know how I could succeed that under these conditions. (there is no BIOS detachable from the MoBo on both computers)
Does someone have a clue on that?        
LVL 69

Accepted Solution

Callandor earned 1000 total points
ID: 10849305
You need to download the right binary from Asus for your specific motherboard, copy it to a bootable floppy along with the flash program that goes with it, and boot the problematic system with this floppy.  When it boots, run the flash program and specify the binary to flash (which you copied to the floppy).  Make sure nothing interrupts the flash process or you will have a paperweight.  When it's done, try booting up again from the floppy to see if the BIOS version corresponds to the binary you just flashed.
LVL 31

Expert Comment

ID: 10849947
The bent pin in the monitor cable connector is actually supposed to be like that. For some reasons this method is chosen for grounding this pin. Looks odd but....

I don't think it has a bearing on this issue, though...

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