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Posted on 2009-04-08
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Hello,

I have a HP Pavillion laptop here with Windows Vista installed. When you hit the power button to fire up the laptop everything seems to kick on but nothing appears on the screen. The processor light lights up for a few seconds but then stays off. Sometimes is takes 3-4 times of powering off and on to finally get it to turn on properly. What do you think?
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Question by:NickCat11
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by:mikey1h
ID: 24102246
There are several issues that could cause this.  Lets start with how old is the system, what are the specs, and can you hear the hard drive spinning when you start it up?   Also, if you have a Desktop monitor avail, try connecting it to the port on the back of the laptop before powering it on and see if you have video there
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Author Comment

by:NickCat11
ID: 24102324
The laptop is 2 years old. When I power on the fans come on and that hinders me from hearing anything else really. No video when plugged into an external monitor when the laptop doesnt boot. 2 gigs of ram and a amd dual core processor...
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mikey1h earned 672 total points
ID: 24102405
Has it been dropped recently?    if you dont even get the bios (boot up) sccreen,   it sounds like the motherboard went out.    I see this at least 4-5 times a week in the repair shop I work for, and unfortunately, it is usuallly cheaper to just buy a new laptop than a motherboard and find someone to replace it for you....that is no easy task.  (we charge $250 labor)     You CAN save you data however, by purchasing a ide/sata to USB adapter and plugging your old hard drive into the new computer and just copying the info you need
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by:andoss
andoss earned 664 total points
ID: 24103065
If it's working intermittently as you say then i'd suggest looking at some connections on the mainboard.
ie. first thing to check is that the RAM is seated properly, next check HDD is seated, CPU etc. One could be getting a slightly bad connection that is causing the laptop to not boot correctly.
I'd also suggest taking out one of the RAM sticks and trying to boot then trying the same ram stick in a different DIMM slot, then try the second RAM stick in the same fashion. This just narrows down whether its the RAM which has an issue or the DIMM slots on the board.

This is assuming that once the laptop boots up it works fine without errors until you turn it off again?
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by:mikey1h
ID: 24103171
this was my reason for asking if it was dropped, RAM usually doesn't just drop out of the socket by itself.....   and even if the HDD was not seated properly, it would still boot to the BIOS, just not recognize it.    as far as the CPU, I agree with andoss that it COULD be mis-seated, but with the way laptops are built and the heatsink bolted down over it, again, is very rare for that to have just  "jiggled" loose.   There is one other possibility that I can think of, especially if you use it heavily....     the power regulator board that handles charging and passing the voltage to the motherboard could be either going bad or have a loose solder point.    I know this was a case in older think pads where it was too close to the heatsink that it caused the solder joints to heat up and basically unsolder themselves.      if all other checks don't cure the problem, we could look into that, as it is fairly simple to get to and replace and MUCH less costly than a new laptop or MB
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by:NickCat11
ID: 24103811
I will give those things a shot as soon as I get back to the office tomorrow and let you know. Thanks!
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by:nobus
nobus earned 664 total points
ID: 24104856
you can try to remove all devices you can  :Ram, disk, and cd drives
on boot , it should beep; if not : bad mobo or cpu
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Author Comment

by:NickCat11
ID: 24106382
I removed all devices and on boot got no beeps at all. Just the fans running. Is it safe to say it's the board? Also when I put everything back in properly and booted the problem still remained. Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:mikey1h
ID: 24106462
Yeah, I would say it is the mainboard.    If the fans are running, it is not the power supply I mentioned earlier.      Retail Motherboards run between $174 and $650 depending on your computer.  Would def look into just replacing the whole laptop.   If you need to save data on the old harddrive, and need assistance, I can help with that as well
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by:nobus
ID: 24107522
yes, it looks like it is the cpu or the board, with the board as high favorite
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