eMachines t2862 Suddenly Won't Start

Potterjazz
Potterjazz used Ask the Experts™
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I have an eMachines desktop model t2862 that has been working well for several years. Suddenly this morning it wouldn't start at all. I swapped out the power supply with one I know is ok, but that didn't work. I tried swapping out the power switch (I had one fail on me on another comp and thought this might be it). No dice. There is a light on the motherboard that is on when there is power to the machine, and so far as I know, nothing noteworthy happened to the computer yesterday, but I'm at a loss what might cause it to fail so badly that the fans don't turn on, even, let alone beeps, POST, video signal, etc. Could this be caused by a mobo battery fail? Any thoughts would be appreciated as I've run out of ideas.
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Commented:
First, reseat all of the connection to EVERYTHING, IDE cables(or sata) all the power connection etc.
If you still get nothing, remove any pci cards, and disconnect everything aside from your processor, ram and video card. If you still do not have power, it's either your motherboard or processor.

Author

Commented:
I'll do as you suggest. I bought a new powersupply after testing the old one and discovering it was bad. But something may have happened overnight (power surge, for example) that could have damaged both the powersupply and components on the mobo. Thanks. Will get back to you shortly after doing as you suggested.

Author

Commented:
Dear Nezoic,
       I unplugged/removed except for processor and RAM (there was no video card) and it still won't turn on. I will give you credit for the solution to this one, but please help with a further issue. I happen to have the identical motherboard, processor and RAM sitting among some hardware I've stripped from machines I upgraded in the last couple of years. If I swap this alternative MOBO into the box with the bad mobo/processor, can I expect to just do a repair installation of windows XP using the installation disc (the version that doesn't require a ground up reinstallation, i.e., that preserves all the existing programs), and if so, is there anything I need to be sure to do to facilitate this process? I know that the OS takes information about the hardware when it is installed and won't automatically work when it 'finds itself' part of a different system. Thanks in advance for any help on that you can offer.
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Danny ChildIT Manager
Commented:
you shouldn't need to do a repair install if the mobo is identical, it should just boot normally.  Assuming this is an XP system (by its age), the Windows Activation is triggered by changed devices "voting" for new activation, which is then triggered when a defined vote level is reached.  I don't think a mobo swap will do it.

More info here:
http://www.aumha.org/win5/a/wpa.php
and see the points on backing up the wpa files!

I'd swap in the known good psu and mobo, and keep the old cpu and ram to start with.  Then use these latter two if it still doesn't boot.  

I don't see why else you'd want to do a Repair install.  The system should boot to a POST screen even without a hard disk attached, so we should get to this point before taking any more dramatic steps.  

Author

Commented:
The mobo (or processor) *was* the culprit (along with the bad p.s.). It booted up fine after I swapped in the identical mobo. Will report back soon about whether I had to do anything to get the OS to come up (I'm not where the machine normally lives and don't have a monitor, keyboard, etc., free here). Thanks for your help. I'll distributed points mostly to the hardware advice I got initially, but also to DanCh99 if his advice re: the OS coming back ok is correct.

Author

Commented:
Solution was also *very prompt*.

Author

Commented:
The OS came up as DanCh99 said it would, although all the devices had to be found again and installed, along with PCI, IDE and other motherboard-specific drivers. The culprit was the motherboard, and since the powersupply went simultaneously, it is likely the latter damaged the former on its way out (first time I've seen that, but I can imagine how it could happen with a failing p.s.). Thanks again for the prompt, accurate help.
Danny ChildIT Manager

Commented:
there can sometimes be some chipset variants on mobos that seem to be identical, but glad it's fixed.  A driver refresh does no harm in any case.

Failed PSUs can sometimes take out mobos too. Or, both can be killed by a power spike.

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