PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

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PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby ogohier » Wed Jan 21, 2015 10:56 am

Hello everyone!

I have had this PC config for 2 years now and since 1 week i have this issue :

The PC won't boot, it freeze during POST before i can access to the BIOS, with an underscore symbol in the upper left corner of the screen. No beep are heard. BUT randomly, approximately 1 out of 30 times, i can boot again and then it works perfectly (i can run games and do everything i want) until i restart....

Here is my config:

Main Board: MSI Z77A-G45 socket 1155 Chipset Z77
Bios Version: E77xxx V2.4 (not sure because i can't acces to the BIOS)
Video Card: 1 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660Ti MSI 2 GB
PSU: ANTEC HCG 520W
CPU: Intel i5 3570K 3.4Ghz
Memory: 2x4096 MB G.Skill DIMM DDR3
SSD/ HDD: SSD OCZ Agility 3 - 120 Go + HDD Seagate Barracuda SATA 3.0 - 2 To
CPU COOLER: Cooler Master Hyper TX3
OC: Yes
Operating System: Windows 7 64bit ultimate

I don't know if the POST pass or not, or maybe it does and it is a BIOS issue, or if it is Board issue like a dead chipset or bended pins...

To save some time i will list steps i have tried:

1. Tried without the video card

2. Tried resetting the bios by removing the CMOS battery.

3. Tried booting with just one memory stick in Dimm slot 1

5. Tried booting with different keyboards and with no keyboard.

6. Tried without disks

7. I have no beep. I have tested if the beeps work trying to boot with no memory, and i had 3 beeps.

Thinking that maybe a bios update would solve all my problems, but can't boot into bios to update it, get the underscore symbol right after startup.

I'm open to any and all suggestions and i am out of ideas. What is weird is that sometimes it boots and it works perfectly until i restart.

Additional info: The CPU phase lights are lit all the way to 4 during the beginning of startup, and then just one when it freezes. No beep.

Thank You!!
Olivier
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby Karlsweldt » Wed Jan 21, 2015 4:24 pm

Welcome to Motherboards.org.
Nice that you list the system specs.. helps in diagnosis!
One prime cause for failure to start may be the BIOS battery. It is only a backup for when no power enters the PSU to provide the +5 volt stand-by power for USB and BIOS/CMOS needs. But it also keeps the real-time clock working. If that is not active due to a dead battery, the motherboard may not show signs of life. Typical life is about 2~3 years, depending on use. Cheap fix if the cause.
But also look over all the capacitors on the motherboard. If any show signs of domed tops, excess leaning or leakage, they are bad. More info on the "bad caps" syndrome at http://www.badcaps.net/ The PSU can also suffer from "bad caps".
Extreme caution is advised if opening a PSU that has not been off power for less than 1/2 hour. Dangerous voltages are present inside, on the large capacitors and finned heat sinks. Test around with a volt meter set to 250 volts, from case ground to heat sinks and large capacitors. Below 25 volts, considered safe.
Forget about a BIOS update, if it was working properly. That may only compound problems. Get it back working first.
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby ogohier » Thu Jan 22, 2015 12:59 am

thank you for the answer!
I don't think that the battery is in cause given that the board shows some signs of life.
But i will take a look to thoses caps!! looks like the symptoms suggest ther might be some bad caps.
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby ogohier » Thu Jan 22, 2015 5:44 am

Thank you for the answer!
I don't think it is a battery issue given that the board shows some signs of life.
But i will take a look a thoses caps!!
Maybe some bended pin too?
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby evasive » Sat Jan 24, 2015 2:31 am

A dead/flat CMOS battery will allow the system to power on and basically nothing after that. No beep, nothing on the screen. Exactly what you are seeing. Replace the CR2032 3V lithium coin cell CMOS battery, they are less than 1 US$ so it would be a cheap, quick easy fix if it is that.

Been there, done that, costed me several hours the first time I got caught by this. Now if I have a system with these systems it is the first thing I do, 99% of the time that's it.
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby ogohier » Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:45 am

Ok you'r right i'll do that. Since it's really cheap indeed.
I'll let you know! Thanks for the advice.

Ps: I checked the caps and i didn't see anything. I didn't try anythingelse thought, since i was not home for a couple of days.
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby ogohier » Tue Jan 27, 2015 12:48 am

Hmm actually i tested the battery with a multimeter and it says 3V (3.128 exactly).
So i think it's not dead....
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby Karlsweldt » Tue Jan 27, 2015 4:18 pm

The keyboard LED lights are a simple diagnostics indicator. On powering on, they will flash once. Then about 5 seconds or so, will flash again.. maybe twice. That is a sign the POST process is going well. If no second flash sequence, the POST process has detected a critical fault, and halts.
Try resetting the BIOS to default. Pull the power from the PSU, attempt a few starts to drain reserve. Then remove the battery and use the jumper provided, likely marked CLRCMS or similar. Should be a 3-pin jumper, most common. Pins 1 and 2 are 'normal', pins 2 and 3 are 'reset'. Leave for about 15 seconds, to ensure the BIOS pages revert to default. Then reverse the process, and try a power up. If good, go into each BIOS page and set according to how the system is built.
The only proper way to test one of those coin cells is with a low load on it.. less than 10 ma. One of those 3 volt LED lamps makes a good tester!! The longer leg is positive. Bright glow, great. Dim, replace the battery.
Typical CR2032 specs if interested... http://cr2032.co/datasheets/sanyo-cr2032-datasheet.pdf
Other causes for a system to come to life include the CPU and/or GPU fan, or a case fan if monitored. Check that the CPU fan is on its proper header, and spins free. Use a toothpick to nudge the blades. If they jiggle to a stop, all is good. If they coast to a dead stop, the bearing lube is dry, and the fan may not spin properly. Time to relube the bearing or replace the fan. Same for any small DC "brushless" fan.
Maybe resetting all device cards, the CPU and memory plus power connections, may restore life.
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby evasive » Wed Jan 28, 2015 7:19 am

ogohier wrote:Hmm actually i tested the battery with a multimeter and it says 3V (3.128 exactly).
So i think it's not dead....

That is out of circuit, in-circuit can tell you differently.

You are checking all the video connectors after a boot? Including the on-board one, even if the video card is in there?

Can you check the power cable going to your video card for proper fitting?
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Re: PC won't Boot - no POST? - no beep

Postby ogohier » Sun Feb 01, 2015 4:29 am

Hi! Thank you again for your suggestions.

I have tried a new battery, still the same thing...

I have completely removed the mobo from the case, plugged the minimum (power, power switch, 1 memory stick, keyboard, screen) and still the same thing...

I checked the cpu fan, the cables, seems fine to me...

However i have nothing on the keyboard when powering on, not even one single flash.

So it can be either the psu, the modo or the cpu right?
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