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Thread: Nothing on screen

  1. #1
    Only african to own a PC! Cider's Avatar
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    Nothing on screen

    Hi all

    I installed a sound card for a mate of mine in his pc and for some reason nothing registers on ANY screen that i use. I played with the on board and external graphics card.

    I left 1 stick of ram in, CPU and external graphics card [ I took out the sound card and the other add ons ] Still no response from monitor. Monitor light just flashes.

    Ram seems to be good.

    Any suggestions ?
    The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    Try uninstalling the soundcard drivers...............sometimes they don't play nice with the graphics ones.



    EDIT: That means you will probably have to try booting from a floppy, the Windows CD or a "Live CD". Otherwise slave the HDD to another machine. In fact you might try booting from it?

    Incidentally, does the machine seem to boot apart from the display? can you get into setup? (BIOS)

    Sometimes hitting the warm boot button a few times will coax the screen into life.

    Also are you getting any BIOS beeps?
    Last edited by nihil; June 22nd, 2007 at 12:32 AM.
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
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  3. #3
    Only african to own a PC! Cider's Avatar
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    No bios beeps whatsoever. The machine boots, just nothing on the screen. So I cant exactly get into BIOS.
    The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.
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  4. #4
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    Right! that isn't conclusive but I would expect two beeps for a video or RAM problem.

    You might try turning it on and off a few times; that sometimes works.

    After that try rapidly hitting the F2 key as it is booting. Then reboot & do the same with the Delete key. It may let you into BIOS.

    I would be inclined to try an old Win98 or ME boot disk. You should be able to tell from the noise and the flickering lights if it booted with it.

    I assume that you have tried different video cables?

    As you are not getting as far as Windows it is beginning to sound like a processor or motherboard problem. It would not have loaded conflicting drivers until you got to Windows.

    EDIT:

    Try removing the CMOS battery and clearing the BIOS? I would remove the independent graphics card for this test, as the BIOS should reset to use the onboard chipset.
    Last edited by nihil; June 22nd, 2007 at 02:16 AM.
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

  5. #5
    Disgruntled Postal Worker fourdc's Avatar
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    Do you get hard drive activity lights? Trying to rule out a PS problem. Do you have a volt meter? If so you could check voltages with it powered up and connected. ATX power supplies can't be checked without a load.
    ddddc

    "Somehow saying I told you so just doesn't cover it" Will Smith in I, Robot

  6. #6
    Only african to own a PC! Cider's Avatar
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    I do not have a volt meter but i will play with the CMOS battery.
    The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.
    Albert Einstein

  7. #7
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    With that kind of problems:

    always first check the cheapest and most evident parts. Like cables, connectors, etc... is everything sitting on the right place, didn't hit anything by accident.

    Next strip of your pc to the minimum, meaning only motherboard, cpu, and ram and video (onboard or card). See if everything is seated well.

    A possible problem could indeed be your powersupply, do the fans spin up?

  8. #8
    Only african to own a PC! Cider's Avatar
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    Ok: My other mate took a look at this PC and came up with three options.

    1) The sound card that was installed bombed the PC. - I must put the HDD into my pc, find where the sound card drivers that I installed and delete it completely.
    2) The drivers for the graphics card [both on board and external are gone and I must reinstall them] - Is this possible by putting the HDD into my pc and installing the drivers that way?
    3) The mobo has gone - however the CPU fan is still going and imo I don't think so.

    Are any of these ideas viable?

    Thanks.
    The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.
    Albert Einstein

  9. #9
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    1) not the issue. If this were the case you would be able to see the BIOS. The driver isn't loaded then.
    2) Same as 1
    3) Possible. Did you unplug the powercord when you installed the soundcard? Most PCs these days aren't exactly off when you shut them down.

    Remove everything, HDs, floppy drive etc. Leave only the cpu, memory and the graphics card. If there's still no picture either the PSU or the mainboard is fried.

    Edit: Oh. I just remembered something. Is the led on the floppy drive burning constantly? If so, you've connected the floppy flatcable the wrong way around (pin1 on the wrong side). Classic..
    Last edited by SirDice; June 23rd, 2007 at 12:48 PM.
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  10. #10
    Super Moderator: GMT Zone nihil's Avatar
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    Hmmm,

    1. Remove the CMOS battery and leave the box for 24 hours unplugged from the mains supply. That will reset the BIOS. There might even be a jumper switch on the MoBo to reset the BIOS?

    If that doesn't work:

    2. Obtain the latest BIOS version and reflash it EVEN IF IT IS THE SAME VERSION. That will deal with any question of BIOS corruption that resetting could not correct. Obviously you would need to be able to boot from the floppy drive to do this. The flashing software will load its own drivers.

    If that doesn't work then the MoBo is stiffed.

    Edit: Oh. I just remembered something. Is the led on the floppy drive burning constantly? If so, you've connected the floppy flatcable the wrong way around (pin1 on the wrong side). Classic..
    Nice one SirDice! the boot/post would get as far as checking the floppy then get confused and stall!!!.............but.............

    1. There should be a little white cursor blinking in the top left of the screen.
    2. The Screen power light should be green or solid rather than orange or blinking ("no signal" status).
    3. Why remove the cable to install a sound card? it is at the other end of the MoBo?

    The only way I can explain the current situation is:

    1. The BIOS is corrupted.
    2. The MoBo was damaged when the card was installed.

    BUT..................

    I must put the HDD into my pc, find where the sound card drivers that I installed and delete it completely.
    Which suggests that the thing must have booted after the insertion of the sound card?

    Clear the BIOS and replace the CMOS battery as a start?
    If you cannot do someone any good: don't do them any harm....
    As long as you did this to one of these, the least of my little ones............you did it unto Me.
    What profiteth a man if he gains the entire World at the expense of his immortal soul?

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