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dead CMOS battery

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just plugged in after 5 years of inactivty and am told I have a CMOS error . does that mean my CMOS battery is dead ?
I can still get to the Windows XP OS with the F1 or F2 or "load optimal settings" choices and the lost settings allows me to get through without the user password but I am wondering what the consequences of operating with a dead battery are.

p.s. I know very little about PCs and have never before been in that "set up" screen with all the different boot options
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    Tech Staff

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Himartski, Posted Image

t I am wondering what the consequences of operating with a dead battery are.

The system will not keep correct time, BIOS setting may fluctuate, get verious error messages, computer may not start at all,

Here is a short article on changing the CMOS battery.

Couple of notes.

Taking anti static measure. It is sufficient to discharge static from your body by briefly touching an unpainted part of the computer case.

Skip the writing down and saving settings.

If you battery is held in place by a little clip, it is fairly weak metal, Do not bend it very far back, just enough so you can remove and replace the battery.

After installing the battery and starting the computer, you will get an error message, this is normal.
Restart the computer and enter the set up, (BIOS)

Set the time, date, (language and region if present)
Go to the exit screen.

Find and highlight, Load Default, or, Load Optimized Defaults, Press enter.

Save setting and exit.
Your computer will restart and hopefully load the OS.


Edited by iammykyl, 04 January 2012 - 11:52 PM.

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    Grumpy Ol' MSgt (Ret.)

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A most important critical step not mentioned above, unplug the computer from the wall before reaching in to remove the battery!

And don't touch the new battery with your bare fingers as skin oils promote corrosion and attract dust.

Running with the incorrect date and time (when off by months and years - as would be with a dead battery or CMOS reset) has been known cause problems with the OS and other programs. Since these batteries are just a couple dollars and available at just about any battery/watch/camera counter, go ahead and replace it. Take the old one with you as most counters recycle.
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