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What is the cause of the 3 long post beeps?

Posted on 2008-06-23
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
I have a gateway 509ge. When I booted up 3 long beeps sounded off. My video didn't come on. I searched the internet for an answer and found that the 3 long beeps usually means Base memory read/write test error. So I removed all the ram modules from my computer and powered on. I have still have the 3 long beeps. I tried loading them in one at a time, making no difference. Am I missing anything? Could it be something else?
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Question by:danbnotme
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David-Howard earned 400 total points
ID: 21849377
Usually indicates a RAM fault.
You can read about this code and other BIOS beep codes here.
http://www.computerhope.com/beep.htm
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by:slam69
slam69 earned 400 total points
ID: 21849394
try booting in vga mode, get to it in teh same place as where safe mode is laucnhed from, it could be that your video card has gone so this should test it, might also be worth testing a different card if you have one
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by:jcimarron
jcimarron earned 400 total points
ID: 21849524
danbnotme--Gateway says you have an Intel BIOS.  Here are beep codes for Intel BIOS
http://www.intel.com/support/motherboards/desktop/sb/cs-010249.htm
However, another reference says it is an AMI Bios.
http://www.pcguide.com/ts/x/sys/beep/amiB3-c.html
Diagnosis is the same for 3 beeps.
If no success, Gateway suggests calling their Tech Support
http://support.gateway.com/s/MOTHERBD/INTEL/m00060/beepcode.shtml
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by:BillDL
BillDL earned 400 total points
ID: 21849630
Here's your PC's specifications:

http://support.gateway.com/s/PC/R/5041/5041nv.shtml

http://support.gateway.com/s/PC/R/5041/5041sp3.shtml

That motherboard's Beep Codes:
http://support.gateway.com/s/MOTHERBD/Intel2/102007/102007faq38.shtml

3 = Memory Error, as you say.

How much RAM is fitted, in what sizes, and how many sticks do you have? - actually you only need to answer two of those points and we'll work out the rest ;-)

http://support.gateway.com/s/MOTHERBD/Intel2/102007/102007faq40.shtml

http://support.gateway.com/s/MOTHERBD/Intel2/102007/102007mvr8.shtml

Note the system bus frequency of 800 MHz needed for DDR400.  Could it be that your CMOS Battery is flat and that it isn't retaining settings relating to this?
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LVL 93

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by:nobus
nobus earned 400 total points
ID: 21853261
>>   So I removed all the ram modules from my computer and powered on   <<   you need at least 1 ram stick in there ! test with 1 ata the time first
here is what i always suggest :
i suggest testing with the minimum setup - disconnect also all peripherals and network cables :
motherboard + cpu + 1 ram stick, video card, power supply
on boot, do you have a display?
if NO it is one of the connected, swap ram, Power supply, video card - leaving only motherboard and cpu
if Yes, add devices till the problem shows

you can also check the motherboard for bad capacitors as shown here :   www.badcaps.net
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