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Thread: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

  1. #1
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    Exclamation I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    Well I must have done something to the thing because now I don't seem to even have bios.

    When I bought this machine I paid $50 for it; and, after the person who sold it to me tore out the door I discovered it was full of cockroaches. Cockroaches! (No kidding! Chock-full of them). So, until recently I hadn't 'thoroughly' cleaned it but the other day I took the whole thing apart (labeled everything - where it came from), cleaned everything up with denatured alcohol and put it back together but adding more stuff from the other units I have sitting around (3 expansion cards, an additional disk and two disc drives).

    Today, I got to remembering how, when I tried to install Linux on that machine before I had all kind of problems and it would not complete the install (I had tried like 5 different distos at that time). It then sat for months, until now. I also remembered what someone said to me recently regarding those install problems and that he had said they were running across a lot of HP machines where there was some problem between the system clock and the clock in Linux.

    I got to looking over the specs for my mobo again on HP's site . . .

    http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/d...roduct=1843604

    . . . and I saw that there is instructions at the bottom of that page on clearing cmos using a jumper on the mobo. I put 2 and 2 together (so I thought) and followed the procedure (for both clearing cmos and password - 2 separate jumpers).

    When I turn the machine on it get no output to the display at all and all it does is the fans run like a bat out of hell. When I try to use the power button to shut down it does not respond. I have had to remove the power cord from the back of the machine to power off.

    HP Pavilion a1253w Media Center, or so it started. Everything is stock except for adding a hard drive, replacing the disc drive with two different ones, and replacing the modem card plus two other expansion cards. Here is a link to the system specifications on HP's web site and further system info follows that.

    http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/d...roduct=1843604


    System Details:

    Model: HP Pavilion a1253w Media Center (changes have been made, though that's where it started).
    CPU: an AMD 64 3400+ (circa 2002? 2005? - part of the original machine)
    RAM: 2 x 256 MB pc 3200 ddr sdram 400 MHz 184 pin
    Mobo: an old Amberine board (4 slots for RAM - up to 4 GB but I'll have 2 - 2.5 GB)(onboard sound and graphics)
    Expansion Slots: ATA (ATA?) and one pcie
    Drive Types: all ide (2 X disk drives - one WD 80 GB is primary and one Maxtor 100 GB is slave. 2 X disc drives both ide).
    Other: Because it's an old media center machine it has the 5? in 1 card reader and a thing with a few extra usb ports and other stuff (out the front of the machine). I'd like to keep those. (I'd attach a pic but I'm not seeing how to do that with this bb). To see the "other thing" - http://i.ebayimg.com/10/!CE!mJVQEWk~$(KGrHqF,!lsEz+4J5i0DBNQdftvG!Q~~_35.J PG

    The expansion cards themselves:

    1 x Modem = Gateway GVC SF-1156IV/ R9A (Gateway p/n: 6001260) @ http://pjcomputers.net/gatewaygvcsf-...epcimodem.aspx

    1 x Audio card = Ensoniq Audio PCI 9740 (chipset es1370; Assembly NO: 01 rev. e) (can't find a link for details)

    1 x Wireless NIC = Motorola Wireless PCI Adapter WPC810G (upc: 6 12572 09533 1) @ http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=WPC810G


    If anyone has any ideas I'd love to hear them. I need to be cautions though since this thing is really all I've got for this.

    Thanks in advance for any help.


    Jake
    “ The best method for accelerating a computer is the one that boosts it by 9.8 m/s2. ”
    - Anonymous

  2. #2
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    Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    You probably won't believe it, but I had exactly the same motherboard in an HP unit -- that just up and "died" one day.

    I replaced everything but the CPU, and it would not boot up no matter what I did.

    This was a while back (year or more ago) but even then, it was impossible to find a 939 chipset board (I think that's what is was) to replace this one and keep all the parts.

    Ended up replacing it with a new AMD board that I got for $50.
    Ubuntu 16.10 Mate, Mint 18 Mate; MS Win 8.1, MS Win10 Pro.
    Will not respond to PM requests for support -- use the forums.

  3. #3
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    Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    The first thing I would do is remove all the updates you did and then see if you at least get a screen. If you don't get a screen then, you may have to make sure you set the jumper back to where it was before you moved it to clear the BIOS. If so, very carefully follow the instructions once more for clearing your BIOS (though I doubt this will help). Try booting again. If it still fails, I believe you may have killed your BIOS.

    To post a picture to a thread just click on the paper clip icon on the top menu line of the message box.

    If you are able to get it to boot, try adding just 1 thing at a time and rebooting until you find the one that hangs things up.

  4. #4
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    Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    Did you remember to hold down f12 when you switched on? Just checking. No offence meant. Those instructions do not mention removing the on-board battery before moving the pins. My motherboard user guide says to remove the battery. Perhaps this battery has discharged over so long a time.

    Regards.
    It is a machine. It is more stupid than we are. It will not stop us from doing stupid things.
    Ubuntu user #33,200. Linux user #530,530


  5. #5
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    Arrow Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    Sorry for the delay. I'm self employed and have to deal with phone calls whenever they come in. What follows is what I wrote but was trying to take a few pics to attach.

    By the way, that cable in the one pic is plugged in. I unplugged it for the pic and then plugged it back in.

    I'm gonna try a couple the things that were suggested (to do with the F? key)
    ------------------------------------------------------


    Quote Originally Posted by wep940 View Post
    The first thing I would do is remove all the updates you did and then see if you at least get a screen. If you don't get a screen then, you may have to make sure you set the jumper back to where it was before you moved it to clear the BIOS. If so, very carefully follow the instructions once more for clearing your BIOS (though I doubt this will help). Try booting again. If it still fails, I believe you may have killed your BIOS.

    To post a picture to a thread just click on the paper clip icon on the top menu line of the message box.

    If you are able to get it to boot, try adding just 1 thing at a time and rebooting until you find the one that hangs things up.

    Do you think expansion cards could do something like that?

    I should maybe give more details (this may be important).

    Both those hared drives are nothing but unallocated space. I had dd'ed them before taking everything apart, cleaning and reassembling the other night. I have run live cd's in it in that state though. Well in a similar state.

    There are two hard drives in it. The one that came with the machine is the Maxor 100 GB. When I ran live cd's (Ubuntu 10.04, Knoppix, Live Boot CD, and Parted Magic) it only had that drive in it; and, of course it's jumper was set as Master.

    After reassembling the other night I added the WD 80 GB drive but I also switched the order so that the WD drive is set as the master and the Maxtor is set as the slave.

    Then there's the three expansion cards. To begin with it had one, stock, modem card. That was removed and replaced with a different one and a wireless NIC and a sound card were added.

    In the meantime, since my first post in this thread, I discovered there was one wire coming from the power supply I believe that I had neglected to plug in. It still had it's little masking tape label on it and I plugged it in where it goes. There's only one plug shaped like it on the board so there's no way to mistake that. Powered up again, no change. Have to pull the power cord to get it to shut off.

    Well, I shouldn't say "no change" I heard what sounded to me like the hard drive or drives, not 'spinning' down because of the way I have to pull the plug to power off like that - but it sounded like a drive when it's power is cut off. It had been spinning.

    So all that and no change.

    One thing, I do recall something just like this while working on this machine before. At that time I hadn't realized I didn't have the RAM in the board and powered up. It did the same thing. I inserted the RAM (back then/ that time) and everything worked fine. I've been over and over it and every single plug and jumper and everything (including the rectangular white plug for the mobo's power) is where it should be. I don't really want to wreck something by not powering off safely - over and over.

    There is also that there are 4 slots for RAM. Two of those slots are paired next to one another and are colored blue. The other two are next to them, also paired, and are colored black. I wonder if the RAM has to go in the black ones when there is only two sticks? They are in the blue ones now.


    Quote Originally Posted by grahammechanical View Post
    Did you remember to hold down f12 when you switched on? Just checking. No offence meant. Those instructions do not mention removing the on-board battery before moving the pins. My motherboard user guide says to remove the battery. Perhaps this battery has discharged over so long a time.

    Regards.
    It said F1 on that page at the link (the one with the system specs on HP's site). Is it supposed to be F12 though? They could be wrong. Wouldn't surprise me. I also know I've used the esc key before to enter the boot menu.

    I did try pressing F1 just immediately after hitting the power button, but maybe I'm supposed to depress it before touching the power button and then hit the button with the F key depressed?

    I thought it mentioned in that link that I'd have to reset some settings in the bios after I cleared things like that. I had been wondering what to expect. This, is what I got.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    “ The best method for accelerating a computer is the one that boosts it by 9.8 m/s2. ”
    - Anonymous

  6. #6
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    Arrow Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    GLORY GLORY GLORY HALLELUJAH!!!

    I don't know why. I just -have-no-idea-at-all . . . But after it sat and while I was taking those pictures and answering the phone - after all that I plugged the cord back in and it fired right up! It was weird because I never touched the power button. Merely applying juice to it from plugging in the cord and raaaorrr there it went! I'm in the bios setup and the clock is running. Just need to . . . well I need to have a smoke before anything, but then I'll configure the bios and see how well it shuts down using the power button.

    I'll let you guys know how it turns out.

    Hang on . . .


    “ The best method for accelerating a computer is the one that boosts it by 9.8 m/s2. ”
    - Anonymous

  7. #7
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    Arrow Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    Well I'm not sure I know how to set a couple of these settings - since the hardware has changed. It's obviously recognizing all the major stuff (both hard drives, both disc drives, the cpu, the onboard audio and video, etc). I'm not sure if I should have "Plug and Play OS" enabled though. Isn't that only for Microsoft? I'll be running Linux. And I need to find and config the expansion card if I can.


    My cpu fan was revving for some reason. My first assumption is I washed whatever grease or lube out of it when I cleaned with denatured alc. I had to "save and exit" and shut down for right now. I think, if it is the lack of lube thing, that I don't burn it out. I wonder how I can check the fans and replace any needed lube if it's needed?

    I gotta go outside and have a smoke. Back in a few.

    Thanks guys.
    “ The best method for accelerating a computer is the one that boosts it by 9.8 m/s2. ”
    - Anonymous

  8. #8
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    Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    I'm really sorry about your bug box, but you need a reality check.

    Just to put all this into perspective, a guy at my company just put together a 6-core AMD box with 16G RAM for USD$800.

    Keep in mind that when I put my home box together, it cost over $3500. The box we put together at work was extremely minimal, without a keyboard, mouse or monitor even. Even so, for the type of benchmark that we were building the thing for it roasts my i7 alive.

    It amazes me that people will go through weeks of effort to resurrect something that has less CPU power than the average modern cell phone.

    If you're familiar with Linux and hardware and know what's going on, and you're bored and just want to see if you can make it go, then that's one thing. If you actually expect it to perform a useful task after you get it done then it's an entirely different scenario.

    It's actually cheaper to go get new hardware if you consider your time to be worth minimum wage. That way you're pretty sure your hardware works and the only unknown is the software.
    Help stamp out MBR partition tables. Use GPT instead!

  9. #9
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    Arrow Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    Quote Originally Posted by 1clue View Post
    I'm really sorry about your bug box, but you need a reality check.

    Just to put all this into perspective, a guy at my company just put together a 6-core AMD box with 16G RAM for USD$800.

    Keep in mind that when I put my home box together, it cost over $3500. The box we put together at work was extremely minimal, without a keyboard, mouse or monitor even. Even so, for the type of benchmark that we were building the thing for it roasts my i7 alive.

    It amazes me that people will go through weeks of effort to resurrect something that has less CPU power than the average modern cell phone.

    If you're familiar with Linux and hardware and know what's going on, and you're bored and just want to see if you can make it go, then that's one thing. If you actually expect it to perform a useful task after you get it done then it's an entirely different scenario.

    It's actually cheaper to go get new hardware if you consider your time to be worth minimum wage. That way you're pretty sure your hardware works and the only unknown is the software.

    Well I just don't have $800 1clue. I wish I did. Except for the base computer, which I paid $50 for almost a year ago, I got all the other stuff free from donations to the cause. It's the best I can do right now. I'm self employed; and, because I'm just getting started (started like a month ago) it's not bringing in the kind of money yet that I hope to see. It is picking up though, slowly but surely. I just got off the phone 20 min ago with another $15/ hr project. I'm sure it won't be long I can have that $800 box (probably even better). I just don't want to sit on my thumb in the mean time. There's still stuff I can do now with what I have. After all, I do it in my spare time.

    Thanks for all your help man. I'm really new to all this and am just learning as I go. Sometimes I need the help.
    “ The best method for accelerating a computer is the one that boosts it by 9.8 m/s2. ”
    - Anonymous

  10. #10
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    Question Re: I killied it. I think I destroyed my computer.

    Quote Originally Posted by ClientAlive View Post
    ...System Details:

    Model: HP Pavilion a1253w Media Center (changes have been made, though that's where it started).
    CPU: an AMD 64 3400+ (circa 2002? 2005? - part of the original machine)
    RAM: 2 x 256 MB pc 3200 ddr sdram 400 MHz 184 pin
    Mobo: an old Amberine board (4 slots for RAM - up to 4 GB but I'll have 2 - 2.5 GB)(onboard sound and graphics)
    Expansion Slots: ATA (ATA?) and one pcie
    Drive Types: all ide (2 X disk drives - one WD 80 GB is primary and one Maxtor 100 GB is slave. 2 X disc drives both ide)....

    The expansion cards themselves:

    1 x Modem = Gateway GVC SF-1156IV/ R9A (Gateway p/n: 6001260) @ http://pjcomputers.net/gatewaygvcsf-...epcimodem.aspx

    1 x Audio card = Ensoniq Audio PCI 9740 (chipset es1370; Assembly NO: 01 rev. e) (can't find a link for details)

    1 x Wireless NIC = Motorola Wireless PCI Adapter WPC810G (upc: 6 12572 09533 1) @ http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=WPC810G....
    Being a Socket 939, your system appears to be two generations older than my current LinUX box, an Everex® TC2502 upgraded with a Gigabyte® MA78GM-S2HP (AMD® 780G chipset and planar Radeon HD 3200 GPU), Athlon 64 X2 5600+ MPU (Socket AM2, two 2.9 GHzCPU cores), 500W Athena® PSU, and Creative Laboratories® SB0350 PCI audio card.

    From a JPEG in the POP listing at Epinions.com, the Asus® A8AE-LE is a Micro-ATX board with three PCI 1.0 slots (rather than the IBM 5170xxx-compatible, alias ATA, slots used prior to PCI), and an 8x AGP slot (as PCI-Express was in development at your system's time of manufacture). (My current Windows box is also an Asus® product, three generations younger than the A8AE-LE: A CM1630-06, which shipped stock with an M4A76-VM-family mobo (AMD® 760G chipset and planar Radeon HD 3000 GPU; one PCI-Express x1, one x16, and two PCI 2.0 expansion slots), Athlon II X2 220 (Socket AM3,two 2.8 GHz CPU cores), and probably a 350W top-fan ATX PSU.)
    Gigabyte® GA-MA78GM-S2HP (AMD® Athlon 64® X2 5600+ MPU, RS780G NB, SB710 SB)
    Audio: ASUS® XONARESSENCESTX/A (PCIe, C-Media® CMI-8788 via PCIe-PCI bridge)

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