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Cleaned and Remounted Heatsink, now pc won't boot

Posted on 2004-08-09
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Last Modified: 2010-04-25
I'm running XP Pro on an Athlon processor (not an XP processor; an older model). The pc started rebooting all by itself, sometimes after running for a while, sometimes not even getting past the startup screen. Since I thought it might be a heating/cooling problem, I removed the hsf, cleaned it, remounted it (using thermal compound), and now it won't start at all. The fan starts up, the light on the dvd drive comes on, the hdd light comes on (sometimes), but no display on the monitor, no beeps, and the hdd light goes back off after a little bit. I tried reseating the RAM, no fix. I can't imagine that it's my hdd, since it was working fine before I replaced the hsf. Everything appears to be plugged in correctly; the fan is mounted in the right orientation (it's a socket a, and the ridge is aligned with the raised part of the socket). I'm at a loss as to what to do next.

In case it matters, it used to be that when I'd turn off the pc with the power button, unplug and replug the power cable, the fan would start up for a few seconds and then stop until I actually hit the power button again. Now, following the exact same steps, once I replug the power cable the whole thing comes on. Is it a power supply problem? It's a three-year old Compaq 5106cl, 250w power supply.
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Question by:jedenc
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by:Callandor
ID: 11753628
Sounds like a power supply problem - it should boot as soon as you turn on the power, and not require a second press nor taking the power cable out and plugging it back in.
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rid earned 500 total points
ID: 11754610
Disconnect all drives (power and data), remove all cards except video, unhook all peripherals and see if you can get  POST screen. If "No", remove vid card and listen for beeps (a beep code complaining about no vid card present) or remove RAM and have continuous beeping. If no beeps, and you know system speaker is OK, you may have a faulty CPU - IF it's not the power supply.
/RID
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Expert Comment

by:eccs19
ID: 11756171
If you happened to pull out the processor, perhaps it's not re-seated correctly.  If you did pull it out, perhaps try pulling it out again, have a quick look at it (see if any pins bent) and put it back in.  Did you perhaps use to much compound?  You should only put on a thin layer. Too much can be just as bad as no compound.  Did you plug the CPU fan back into the correct plug?  (CPU vs Chasis fan)  Perhaps a BIOS reset may help if all else fails. (doubt it in this case, but stranger things have happened.)
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Author Comment

by:jedenc
ID: 11765721
Thanks for the suggestions. I disconnected all the drives, nothing on the monitor, no beeps. I also removed both my RAM modules, and I got no beeping then either. So, I'm going with the next suggestion, and am purchasing a new PSU to try out.  
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Expert Comment

by:dann47
ID: 11767874
Did you use anti static wrist band or ground yourself before working on the system?? if not good chance everything you touched went boom.  Power supply would be a long shot in my eyes as there is some power source there.  Is the power connection seated on motherboard correctly??  

I had the same problem on a system i was repairing, turned out to be the power connection on the floppy drive, weird but these easily overlooked things can be the real problem
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Author Comment

by:jedenc
ID: 11784743
Well, I tried everything and it didn't work still. I took it in to a shop, and the verdict was that either the mobo fried the chip or vice versa, but either way the whole thing is kaput. Thanks for the input, everyone. Rid was closest, so points to you.
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Author Comment

by:jedenc
ID: 11784762
Oh, p.s. to dann47: I did indeed ground myself and wear a static wristband, so although the system did go boom, I don't think it was esd. Thanks though.
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