CMOS Boot Errors Inconsistent

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by Jess Fertudei, Sep 26, 2004.

  1. I am still running that ECS K7S5A v3.1 with a Duron 1.3 and 2 128M SDRAM
    sticks AT 100/100

    The board has always run pretty fair w/ the exception of the time I tried to
    run DDR which was a dismal failure (some of these boards are just like
    that). The only recent changes were to round IDE cables in preparation for a
    new drive that I still have in the box and that went well after struggling
    to get one to seat correctly. That was a month ago, maybe (interupted and no
    time to finish) and it has run fine since... till today:

    I went to do a cold reboot from the XP partition to the 98 partition,
    shutting it down completely first. When I powered back up it just sat there
    flickering the CD drives back and forth and with the HD light on *almost*
    steady. It sat there for a loooooong time and would not even give me the
    first beep when it finds the video card before POSTing. It showed no POST or
    CMOS screens and reported no Checksum or other errors... the monitor power
    switch light even sat there just blinking as if receiving no signal. I tried
    to start it over and over and over again and got nowhere. I tried turning
    off the Power Supply and back on and nothing happened. I then unplugged and
    replugged the power supply and it did boot... but it still sat there for
    much longer than normal flickering back and forth between CD drives. I then
    shut it down and tried to boot normally and it would not. Then did the PS
    deal again and it did. Tried again and it didn't boot normally nor by
    unplugging PS, then unplugged PS again and it did. AAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaargh!

    I then tried doing the reboot from the *Restart* button in Windows XP and it
    did boot, but it sat there flickering CD drives for a very exaggerated
    amount of time again first. It would, however do a 'restart' even if slow. I
    even booted back and forth between 98 and XP fine other than this lag
    before starting POST. When I did a cold boot, though, it would not and then
    after going again it even did a cold one again... at which point I'm just
    going to leave it up without shutdown for now.


    I'm suspecting the unplug may be a red herring???

    Is my CMOS going tits up? Processor? IDE Controller? None of the above?

    I considered resetting the CMOS, but just checked through it once first and
    all seemed to be in order there (all drives present Auto 32Bit RAM timings
    and such correct), so I didn't for fear of not pushing my luck by rebooting
    too many more times until I have other directions to go here, too.

    From the OS side, though I fail to see any relevancy, I got another one of
    those 'lost communication' with printer errors the other day, that I
    understand may be Windows buggering USB, a message that Paint Shop Pro did
    something illegal when I closed it that I think was because I forgot I had
    PSPHelp open. And I got a Driver IRQL Not Less or Equal message on an
    earlier reboot that referred to nVidia Capture Card driver when I don't have
    Capture and the subsequent blue screen and memory dump. But I don't think
    these are related as they are all after the thing tries to boot which this
    one never gets to the first beep when it struggles.



    Any ideas on what's going on here? I'd hate to buy another board right now
    as cash is tight, but I need my machine running well, too.
    Jess Fertudei, Sep 26, 2004
    #1
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  2. Jess Fertudei

    Thor Guest


    > From the OS side, though I fail to see any relevancy, I got another one of
    > those 'lost communication' with printer errors the other day, that I
    > understand may be Windows buggering USB, a message that Paint Shop Pro did
    > something illegal when I closed it that I think was because I forgot I had
    > PSPHelp open. And I got a Driver IRQL Not Less or Equal message on an
    > earlier reboot that referred to nVidia Capture Card driver when I don't
    > have
    > Capture and the subsequent blue screen and memory dump. But I don't think
    > these are related as they are all after the thing tries to boot which this
    > one never gets to the first beep when it struggles.
    >
    >
    >
    > Any ideas on what's going on here? I'd hate to buy another board right
    > now
    > as cash is tight, but I need my machine running well, too.


    If that board is 3-5 years old, check the electrolytic (can-shaped)
    capacitors for bulging tops/bottoms or any leakage of brown fluid.
    Unexplained instability or inability to boot the machine with a board of
    that particular vintage, and I always look at the caps as a possible issue,
    because boards with the faulty caps were so common.
    Thor, Sep 26, 2004
    #2
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  3. "Thor" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >
    >
    > > From the OS side, though I fail to see any relevancy, I got another one

    of
    > > those 'lost communication' with printer errors the other day, that I
    > > understand may be Windows buggering USB, a message that Paint Shop Pro

    did
    > > something illegal when I closed it that I think was because I forgot I

    had
    > > PSPHelp open. And I got a Driver IRQL Not Less or Equal message on an
    > > earlier reboot that referred to nVidia Capture Card driver when I don't
    > > have
    > > Capture and the subsequent blue screen and memory dump. But I don't

    think
    > > these are related as they are all after the thing tries to boot which

    this
    > > one never gets to the first beep when it struggles.
    > >
    > >
    > >
    > > Any ideas on what's going on here? I'd hate to buy another board right
    > > now
    > > as cash is tight, but I need my machine running well, too.

    >
    > If that board is 3-5 years old, check the electrolytic (can-shaped)
    > capacitors for bulging tops/bottoms or any leakage of brown fluid.
    > Unexplained instability or inability to boot the machine with a board of
    > that particular vintage, and I always look at the caps as a possible

    issue,
    > because boards with the faulty caps were so common.
    >


    Thanks, Thor... I have to go out for an hour or three and will look at that
    when I get home. This would be borderline for that time frame as the BIOS
    date is March 25, 2002.
    Jess Fertudei, Sep 26, 2004
    #3
  4. "Jess Fertudei" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >
    > "Thor" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > >
    > >
    > > > From the OS side, though I fail to see any relevancy, I got another

    one
    > of
    > > > those 'lost communication' with printer errors the other day, that I
    > > > understand may be Windows buggering USB, a message that Paint Shop Pro

    > did
    > > > something illegal when I closed it that I think was because I forgot I

    > had
    > > > PSPHelp open. And I got a Driver IRQL Not Less or Equal message on an
    > > > earlier reboot that referred to nVidia Capture Card driver when I

    don't
    > > > have
    > > > Capture and the subsequent blue screen and memory dump. But I don't

    > think
    > > > these are related as they are all after the thing tries to boot which

    > this
    > > > one never gets to the first beep when it struggles.
    > > >
    > > >
    > > >
    > > > Any ideas on what's going on here? I'd hate to buy another board

    right
    > > > now
    > > > as cash is tight, but I need my machine running well, too.

    > >
    > > If that board is 3-5 years old, check the electrolytic (can-shaped)
    > > capacitors for bulging tops/bottoms or any leakage of brown fluid.
    > > Unexplained instability or inability to boot the machine with a board of
    > > that particular vintage, and I always look at the caps as a possible

    > issue,
    > > because boards with the faulty caps were so common.
    > >

    >
    > Thanks, Thor... I have to go out for an hour or three and will look at

    that
    > when I get home. This would be borderline for that time frame as the BIOS
    > date is March 25, 2002.
    >
    >
    >


    Well... I see one next to the power connector that may or may not be an
    issue... if it is a bulge at the top it's very very slight to the naked and
    fuzzy eye. I need to get a new magnifying glass as the one I have here seems
    to make them all look distorted and I need to give in to the mid-life trip
    to the eye doctor concept one of these days, too, I guess, if ya know what I
    mean.

    But I don't see anything jumping right off the board at me. It has been
    suggested that it's the power supply... what are your thoughts on that? If I
    soft reboot from the 'restart' button in either XP or 98SE it reboots every
    time, but takes forever to get past this flashing all the drives stuff...
    sometimes several minutes. If I do a cold boot it is very erratic as to
    length before starting POST or if it will start at all.
    Jess Fertudei, Sep 27, 2004
    #4
  5. Jess Fertudei

    Thor Guest


    >
    > Well... I see one next to the power connector that may or may not be an
    > issue... if it is a bulge at the top it's very very slight to the naked
    > and
    > fuzzy eye. I need to get a new magnifying glass as the one I have here
    > seems
    > to make them all look distorted and I need to give in to the mid-life trip
    > to the eye doctor concept one of these days, too, I guess, if ya know what
    > I
    > mean.


    The failed caps can range from just a slight bulge to a very obvious bulge
    and leaking. But if you can only detect a very very slight bulge and the
    rest look fine, then chances are that it's just a production anomaly.

    >
    > But I don't see anything jumping right off the board at me. It has been
    > suggested that it's the power supply... what are your thoughts on that? If
    > I


    power supply is a possibility. They can cause all manner of strange
    problems.
    Thor, Sep 27, 2004
    #5
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