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PCI + PCI Express = Unable to boot.

Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-11-09
Experts, I am trying to setup 4 displays desktop, the current video card which is GeForce PX6600TD is giving me two perfect displays.

After adding a brand new PCI video card to the system and turn on the system, the computer refuse to boot to BIOS screen, HDD light will then be lit without blinking, no P.O.S.T beep, just a blank black screen.

This card works on other computer before, and the PCI slot on my computer is in good working condition.
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What motherboard do you use, and what is the PCI video card?
As long as the PCI card is quite recent you shouldn't have any problems.

Have you tried checking the BIOS settings, as I know with AGP and PCI you can change which is the Primary Display adapter that boots?


sounds like the pci card is not seated correctly and is killing the pci bus

reseat it and make sure that the edge connectors or fully inserted into the pci slot

can you try a different pci slot

You also might want to try just booting w/ the PCI card - take the PCI-e card out and just try with the one that's giving your problems.  That'd be my first step (after checking the seating as Ian mentioned)

If your sure you've already installed the card correctly but think it's a software issue then ignore the following comments. This may provide a useful guide to another EE-member...

Please follow the step-by-step installation guide shown below>>

Removing the old VGA driver

It is Recommended that you remove or uninstall the existing display driver before replacing an old video card with the new one.

1) Click on Start, then select Control Panel from the Settings menu.

2) Double-click on the Add or Remove Programs.

3) The window will list the programs currently installed in your system. Select the driver of the old video card and then click on the Change/Remove button. Follow the instructions to remove it.

The steps given above are for Windows XP. The steps may vary depending on your operating system. If you cannot find the current display driver in the "Add or Remove Programs" window, please ignore the above section.

Hardware Installation

1) Shut down the computer; unplug all the cables and electrical cords and remove the cover from the computer chassis.

2) Locate the AGP or PCI Express bus expansion slot on your system motherboard and remove the cover if there is one.


If there is an existing VGA card, remove the old card by loosening the mounting bracket and pulling the card off the slot.

3) Position the new card over the AGP or PCI Express slot. Insert the bus connector in the slot and gently press the bus connector down.

Inserting your card into the wrong type of slot can damage your card, your computer, or both.

Be sure to close the plastic clips at the ends of the dimm slots before installing the video card into the AGP slot. Otherwise, the clips may block the parts on the back of the video card, and will possibly damage the card.

4) If the card has a 4-pin or 6-pin power connector located at the edge of the board, Please use the supplied Power-split cable to connect the system power supply and the 4-pin or 6-pin connector on the video card. Do not use this cable on cards with 2 power connectors. If your PC has an unused power cable you may connect it to the product directly.

For those high-end boards with 2 power connectors, please connect each with a dedicated power cable directly from the ATX power supply.

5) Fasten the mounting bracket to the chassis and put the cover back. Plug the cord into the matched connector of the graphics card according to what kind of monitor you have.

If all goes well, continue by installing the appropriate driver.

The comments made above were taken from the product manual.
Manuals and drivers for the PX6600 TD can be downloaded here>>>


Please state your motherboard manufacturer, BIOS version and chipset, Computer type and speed, and Monitor manufacturer. This will help the Experts in finding a solution!


Also the name of your brand new PCI video card!
Assuming the card is seated correctly, and that your power supply is sufficient to power these two video cards, then there must be a specific configuration we need to find (at the bios/hardware level), to get the system to power on.

(please post the info requested above about your hardware:  the pci-e card, the pci card, and the motherboard, at the bare minimum).

Since we can't get to a bios screen to fiddle with bios settings with both cards in, go ahead and yank the PCI card, before we start working toward a solution.

With the PCI card out, head out online and see if there's a bios update available for your motherboard.  If so, install it, and try your original dual card configuration again.

If the results don't change, remove the PCI card again, then boot into the bios.

Ok, here's where it's going to get tedious.

First, find your Initial Display setting (Init Display or Init First Display...something like that), and change it.  Your choices may be PCI or PCI-e (don't think AGP will be there, since there's probably not an AGP slot on the board.  If the setting isn't your bios at all, then just disregard this suggestion, and go on to the next).  Regarless of what the setting is, just change it to the other option (but not AGP, if that is an option), and lets see if the bios can automatically rearrange itself.  Put your card back in and try again.  What options did you have for Init Display, if any? (just so we'll know...)

If that fails, then we may be looking at some kind of IRQ Storm, caused by the PCI and PCI-e cards fighting for interrupt control.  The next step here is to remove any other PCI cards in the system, and then try the PCI video card in every available PCI slot.  Test the system with each move.

If that fails to yield a bootable system, yank the PCI card again, and head back into the bios.  Find your PCI IRQ controls, and take them off of 'auto'.  If you see something in there along the lines of Interrupt Disable or Interrupt Disable Bit, set it to ON...if that function is available in the bios, that's probably the answer (although, I think this function may only be in Windows).  If that isn't there, you'll need to manually 'fiddle' with the IRQ settings for the cards, and hopefully stumble upon a working combination.  This is going to be tedious, if you have to result to this method for a solution...sorry in advance.

PCI and PCI-e work exactly the same way, as far as the bios is concerned...heck, if you had the soldering skills, you could drop PCI-e slot in place of a PCI slot, and it would work normally.  Yes, the two technologies and their buses are that identical (and before anyone flames me, go read the spec!)  =)  

The odds that these two cards are fighting for the same resources and locking your system are very high.  The lack of beep codes disturbs me a little bit, as this indicates that either the system is simply not accessing the bios (freezing instantly with the application of power, which indicates a short is occuring, and, if so, your two card solution is not going to work at all), or that one of the cards is actually initializing and then freezing in a loop as the other card tries to initialize using the same IRQ auto-config settings.  I'm hoping a bios update will allow this to work, or moving the PCI card may allow configuration to occur, or that you can find a manual IRQ combination that will work.

Microsoft talks alot about the problem of IRQ conflicts with PCI and PCI-e cards trying to perform the same function, but unfortunately, that only addresses issues within the Windows Platform, not at the hardware level.  

I didn't find much from Intel on this topic (Intel was the specification leader for PCI-e), nor do I see many folks trying this specific video card combination (most users who try to use dual video cards upgrade their systems to multi-PCI-e slot boards, instead of trying to use the painfully slow 33mhz PCI bus).

Good luck and I hope that helped a little :)



Please note that I've doen all the basics like reseating the card, removing the RAM, making sure the slots and contacts are clean, etc.

The cards are:

GeForce PX6600TD (PCI Express).
ATI Radeon 9250 (PCI).


The mainboard is Gigabyte GA-K8NF-9.

Please download all the latest drivers for your mainboard here>>>

Here's a possible solutions I found at the same site>>

Nothing appears on the screen?
Please check these items:
1. The power cord is securely connected the monitor, the adaptor, and the wall outlet.
2. Check the signal cable connection between the monitor and the computer.
3. Adjust the brightness and contrast controls.
4. The monitor might be in power saving mode. Also, to make sure if the resolution is proper, you can select the desired resolution through the menu "Display properties/Settings“.

OK, I've come across the actuall link for the GA-K8NF-9 MB

You may have already browsed the link but, again this might come in use for another EEmember, who coincidentally have the same mobo. Here's the link>>>


You'll find all the motherboards updates including drivers, FAQ,s, Manual, etc!

After you've updated the BIOS, Chipset etc, we can at least rule-out that issue and move onto providing another possible solution!



Please, some experts please read the question carefully, I stated that it cannot even get past the BIOS screen (BIOS screen didn't even load), how can I adjust Display Properties if that's the case?

All drivers on my system are the latest, latest service packs, updates, etc. I don't even think this has anything to do with Windows yet, as the problems starts right from the moment I press the Power button.

Once again, there's nothing wrong with the card, and also there also nothing wrong with the PCI slot, both are working fine.

I've installed my Firewire card into the same PCI slot and it works like a charm, I've brought the PCI card to work and installed it, it is used to display the screen I am typing this message right now.

I've never heard of anyone having problems running PCI video card in a system with PCI Express card present, but may I am the first one, hopefully based on the information I've given to the experts, you would be able to help me rosolve the problems.

If you have a DVI or Tv-out cable, send it from your PCI-e to your Tv and see if your system shows up on the Tv.
Try the same with the PCI card if applicable! If it show's, you can then edit nvidia's settings!

one step that does not seem to be addressed is: does the system POST with the PCI Express card removed & the PCI card installed?

I have seen some issues with MSI & Biostar motherboards not POSTing when a PCI video card is installed.

I would like to know if you got standard POST error beeps when you powered your system on with out RAM. Some motherboards have issues with POST error beeps not being produced.
have you loaded "optimized defaults" in the BIOS with just PCI Express installed then shutoff, install PCI video then power on?

hope this might spark something or lead you in the right direction.



nep1, I do have TV out cable, but how is anything going to show up (nVia settings ???) at all when it won't even boot past BIOS screen, as I have mentioned twice.

mei_senior_tech, no the system does not boot, this is in the same manner as having both PCI express and PCI installed. PCI alone also cause the system not to boot.

Could someone please explain "INIT Display First" option that's in the BIOS settings? I don't know if this has anything to do with my problem.  I've set it to PCI and it didn't make any difference, the other option is PEG (I assume it means PCI Express G......something....).

No mei_senior_tech, I didn't get any beep codes as previously mentioned. I haven't revert the BIOS settings back to default, then turn off, then install PCi, and power on like you said, I will try that tonight.
From your motherboard manual:

Init Display First
This feature allows you to select the first initiation of the monitor display from which card when you
install a PCI card and a PCI Express VGA card on the motherboard.
PEG Set Init display first to PCI Express VGA card. (Default value)
PCI slot Set Init display first to PCI.


Init Display First becomes the default video card used by the bios (or at the very least, the first place the bios will look for a video card).  If none is detected in the Init Display First location, the bios will switch to the next choice on the list.  I'd hoped by switching the display to PCI primary, we'd get IRQs assigned their first, and maybe solve whatever config issue is plaguing the system....however:

If you have Init Display first set to PCI, and the system won't boot with only the PCI card installed, I'd have to say you've found the source of your issue...either the system is not compatible with this PCI card or you need to alter an IRQ setting to free up the IRQ being used by the diplay controller. Here's a picture..please note the display IRQ noted for PCI slot 1, make similar notes if Display is called out on PCI 2 or 3...try the card in a pci slot with no reference to he display IRQ...and don't be afraid to take over the PCI controls manually.  Set em where you need em to get this thang booting (experiment).

It may also be that this card simply isnt compatible...do they make a PCI-e x1 video card? That would probably be FAR more likely to work in this system.



Due to the case, and the nature of the motherboard, the only available PCI slot to use is the middle one. There are 3 x PCI slots available, the first one cannot be used because PCI Express card usually come with heatsink and fan, therefore taking up the space of PCI slot next to it. I wonder why Gigabyte bother putting PCI slot there, careless !!!

The third PCI slot is located way too low, the bottom beveled edge of the case blocks the monitor cable connector by half of it's size, render this slot useless.

Leaving me with no choice but to use the middle (2nd) PCI slot.


TechInsider, I've reset CMOS, set back to default the BIOS settings, and tried both PCI and PEG as values for Init Display First, none produced any positive results.

Frequenzy of the PCI slots on my motherboard is 33, not sure about my card.
The PCI-e card will be at 100mhz, most likely.  That's normal.

I'm really beginning to believe that your system can't handle this PCI card, because even with the PCI-E card removed, and the bios set to Init Display First:  PCI, we're still getting a no POST result, with no beep codes (indicating a short of some kind...if it were just the card not getting recognized, we'd get 2 or 3 short beeps and one long beep, indicating display device failure).

Do we have another card, perhaps a PCI-based Nvidia card, we can try in the system? I realize this may mean to trip to the store.... =/



TechInsider, I really like the way you think  =)

I'll get another PCI card and try it within the next few days.


TechInsider, I've tried other PCI video cards, in which it works fine on my computer. But those cards are one-notch PCI, in case you don't know what I mean by 'notch', look at these links (or tell me the proper name for it):

(Let me know if the images are not there anymore, note that these may not be pics of video cards, but they have the PCi interface I am talking about).
1 notch PCI card:

2 notches PCI card:

The 2-Notches video card will not work in my system, where as the 1-Noth video card will work in my system, boot up, install, and working right on the first boot. Unlike the 2-Nothes video card that has all the problems I described earlier.

What differences are there between these two types of cards? Maybe I can adjust my motherboard to be compatible with the 2-Nothes video card, but I don't know if it will sacrifice any performance, poses risks or something else in my system.
Ah, the old why's the notch different in PCI cards question...here's the best explaination I've found:

32-bit 5V: Connectors with the notch farthest from the backplate
32-bit 3.3V: Connectors with the notch closest to the backplate
32-bit Universal PCI: Connectors with notches in both the 5V and 3.3V positions

So, with that said, you motherboard is PCI Spec 2.3 compliant.

This means...

Revision 2.3 is an evolutionary change to the PCI Local Bus Specification. Revision 2.3 makes a significant step in migrating the PCI bus from the original 5.0 volt signaling to a 3.3 volt signaling bus. Revision 2.3 supports the 5V and 3.3V keyed system board connectors (as did revision 2.2) but revision 2.3 supports only the 3.3V and Universal keyed add-in cards. The 5V keyed add-in card is not supported in revision 2.3. PCI 66, PCI-X, Mini PCI, and Low Profile PCI support only 3.3 volt signaling on 3.3V keyed system board connectors and 3.3V and Universal keyed add-in cards.

Ok, so the translation:

5V cards don't work in your slots...the odds are that your old card was PCI-2.0 or 2.2 compliant, and ran at 5 volts.  The new card is PCI-2.3 compliant and runs at 3.3 volts.

And that's my best guess as to what's going on :)

I hope that clears it up a little...I know this stuff an can a little techno-geek-speaky, on a deep dive like this. :)


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