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computer: Immediate shut down after one beep, no boot screen

Posted on 2009-05-14
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Last Modified: 2013-12-11
My computer just decided to die on me today. Well, this has happened before, but all I did before was unplug the power supply and wait a few minutes, and it fixes itself somehow..

not today. Here's the youtube video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slgG7r_o-3Q
(sorry about that expletive)

It's not that visible in the video, but there's a decent amount of dust in there.. is it the dust causing it?

The spec is as follows:
cpu: Core 2 Quad Q6600
motherboard: GIGABYTE EP45 - DS3P
ram: Kingston KVR8002N5 - 1G
HDD: Seagate 320GB SATA II
VGA: ASUS EN9800GTHB - HTDI - 1G
DVD/w : PIONEER 216BK
Sound Card: on board
case: ATX-MIDI

The power supply seems to be "GW 550sel", I think GW stands for Great Wall.

So yeah, any definite ideas? I'm about to try swap the video card from another computer to this one, but yeah..

Also, I unplugged the whole thing, and started vacuuming the dust away, from the fans using a makeshift paper pipe (to get to the small places). It's relatively cleaner now.

I plugged it in, it made it through the boot screen, and booted my ubuntu. A while later though, the screen etc just froze with no response. After a forced shutdown, booting again leads to the same situation as shown in the video..

so could this be a PSU problem?
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Question by:vonjaja
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7 Comments
 

Expert Comment

by:Nirliq
ID: 24386945
I had a similar situation and I tried a new power supply and life continued. If you are getting to one beep It could also be a bad RAM chip.

Try removing a RAM Chip and see how many or what kind of beeps you get.  

Safety note make sure you unplug the pwor supply and let the system drain any residual power.

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Author Comment

by:vonjaja
ID: 24387277
After unplugging the power cord for a while (circa 2 hours), I tried running the computer and it worked ok.. for a while. In the middle of me working on some files (on ubuntu 8.04), it just hung. Same display, no response, mouse/keyboard don't move, UI is stuck etc.

Does this confirm problems with the PSU?
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LVL 69

Expert Comment

by:Callandor
ID: 24388776
>all I did before was unplug the power supply

This is a typical symptom of a borderline power supply - it's time to replace it with a good one.  Do not skimp - if a power supply fails, sometimes it damages things connected to it, like the motherboard, cpu, video card, or hard drives.  Get one that provides plenty of current on the +12v rail and that is 80% efficient or better.  PC Power & Cooling, Seasonic, and Akasa are some recommended brands.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:_
ID: 24391762
Also the dust could still be an issue (heat). Vaccuming helps, but there is probably still dust in the heatsink fins and or fanblades. Try either compressed air to clean it out good, or take it off and brush it out.
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LVL 93

Accepted Solution

by:
nobus earned 500 total points
ID: 24394076
Here my troubleshooting procedure :
clean the system from dust, then  test with the minimum setup - disconnect also all peripherals and network cables :
connect only  motherboard + cpu + 1 ram stick, video card, power supply
verify that the 4-pin cpu Aux power plug is connected
on boot, do you have a display?
if NO it is one of the connected, swap ram, Power supply, video card or monitor - 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

additional tests and things to try :
boot without ram, it should beep; (also, without video card)
try bios default settings,(if possible) or clear the bios by removing AC and bios battery

answers : yes it can be caused by dust, and yes it can be the PSU - only way to test is clean the system, and test with another PSU, or test this one on another system
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Author Closing Comment

by:vonjaja
ID: 31581551
Thanks, ended up going to the computer shop and the guy did just what you did. It turns out that it was the video card, since swapping the power supply worked. I originally thought it was the PSU too, until it proved wrong..

Sure helps having someone else do it for you though!
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 24395970
thanks for the feedback
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