Fried Motherboard?

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by, Mar 17, 2006.

  1. Guest

    I've got a 4 y.o. Dell Dimension 4550. I tried to upgrade the RAM to
    1gig with a Dell memory card. After installation, I powered up the
    tower, but the system didn't boot. I did smell a slight burning smell.
    No diagnostic lights in the back, just a low hum and the fan running.

    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
    , Mar 17, 2006
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  2. bmoag

    bmoag Guest

    Welcome to the world of proprietary computer parts.
    Dell motherboards and power supplies look like but are not the same as
    standard ATX power supplies and motherboards.
    So you cannot simply try another power supply, the likely culprit, unless
    you have a similar vintage Dell around to cannibalize.
    It may be something as simple as you plugged the memory modules incorrectly,
    but it sounds worse than that.
    Alas you must take your machine to computer repair facility that handles
    Dells. Hopefully you can salvage the hard drive as it would probably be more
    cost effective to buy a new computer if the problem is anything but the
    power supply.
    bmoag, Mar 17, 2006
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  3. Guest

    Actually, I did install the new memory card in backward. When I
    corrected it, it was too late. Would that fry the motherboard?
    , Mar 17, 2006
  4. Brian

    Brian Guest

    How did you install the memory incorrectly? Once the industry started using
    DIMM (which I would guess because you said 1Gb) the memory could not be
    inserted backwards unless you broke the chip or socket, so again how did you
    install it incorrectly? Have you tried stating the system without the new
    module in place? If so does it boot? If not, try it and see if it still
    boots. Does your system support the type of RAM you tried to install (I
    believe the Bus speed is 400 MHz on that system, depending on your processor
    speed)? As far as proprietary components, you can use generic memory in a
    Dell but some work and some don't, go with the better brand names like
    Kingston and Crucial, they have been doing it for a while and usually will
    work in most systems.
    You could also try booting w/o any memory to see if you get a POST error
    (usually 8 beeps), at least that will tell you if your mobo is good...kinda

    If you are not familiar with this kind of thing it might be best to take it
    to someone who is for a look. Not likely that you burned out the power
    supply by adding memory, more likely you had another issue that showed up
    because you opened the case and moved something around....take a good look
    inside and make sure everything is connected that should be and the way it
    should be. Look for burned spots on everything just in case you did burn
    something out

    You could also go down to ground zero and remove all cards and cords except
    the keyboard, mouse, power, CPU and a good memory stick and work up from
    there to determine the cause, plug one thing in at a time until you find the
    culprit..very time consuming but easy to find the faulty component.
    Good luck and keep trying, dont let a little smell keep you from checking
    things out....nothing is too dificult to replace if you have the patience.
    Brian, Mar 18, 2006
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