486 error

Posted on 2005-04-25
Last Modified: 2013-12-06
The following is what comes up on my screen when I turn the computer on;
        Phoenix Blos(TM) A486 version 1.01E
        Copyright (c) 1985-1993 Phoenix Technologies Ltd
        All Rights Reserved
        Reference ID 20
        Shutdown Failure
        Invalid configuration information - Please run setup program
        Press the F1 key to continue, F2 to run setup utility
 When I press F1 or F2, nothing happens. When I press "Control Alternate Delete " the following comes up on my screen;
        Memory Parity Interrupted at F000 : DCAC
        Type (S)hut off NMI, (R)eboot, Other keys to continue
When I try the above, I get the following screen:
        Memory Parity Interrupted at F000 : D9FF
        Type (S)hut off NMI, (R)eboot, Other keys to continue

this is an old school PC but I would like to get it up and running again...
does anyone know what these errors mean and how to get back to the OS

Question by:dtooth71
    LVL 13

    Accepted Solution

    You have a fairly serious hardware problem, and it is "hitting" you before the OS even loads, so it's a pure hardware problem and has nothing to do with your software or operating system.

    The most likely cause is bad memory.  Memtest86 should work on that system, download it on another machine and make an Memtest86 boot floppy, boot from it and it will test your memory.  You MUST have ZERO errors or the system will not work reliably.

    You are right, it is a very old system, a 486, probably from about 1994.  It's not worth putting any money into.  Also, although I don't think it's your problem here, the CMOS battery is likely to be shot.
    LVL 20

    Expert Comment


    You need to find and install new CMOS battery.
    To me  it's pretty much clear from the error line:
    "Invalid configuration information - Please run setup program"
    that computer CMOS data is invalid and BIOS ( B-asic I-nput O-utput S-system) has to be reset each time you start PC
    due to failed CMOS battery.
    Simply put your computer is unable to handle hardware since hardware data ( hard-disk parameters : cylinders,heads and tracks which describe disk capacity, amount and type of installed RAM memory , number and type of disks attached to disk controllers etc.) are missing or invalid
    CMOS battery might be hard-to-find part particularly on such old system as your 486 PC is. It is usually coin-like battery but on older system it may be rectangular flat 3,2 volts battery  with wires solderred to the motherboard.
    Even if you manage to find one , numerous other problems may arise from 2K bug and the way old BIOS-es manage system time.

     good luck

    Author Comment

    will check out and post back
    LVL 23

    Expert Comment

    by:Mohammed Hamada
    I hope Dtooth71 will be back safe ;)
    Check the PSU in case you didnt success solving it.
    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    One or more of the SIMM memory sticks may be bad.  486DX computers need them in pairs, while 4865SX computers can use just one or two.  Try removing one or more sticks of memory (leave pairs if DX machine) and see if that fixes the memory parity error.

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