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Dimension 3100 won't boot off hard drive


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#1
ecclesia

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I'm working on a Dell Dimension 3100 that won't boot properly. On startup it gets to post and then just sits with a blinking cursor. Initially it had this issue with Windows XP and I booted live Ubuntu off of a USB stick. That booted fine and so I installed Ubuntu normally. After restart it ends up with the same blinking cursor. I tested the drive and it works fine. Even so, I replaced it with a known working drive and had the same issue.

Checked the pram battery and that's fine as well.

I've looked over the board for busted caps and can't find any.

Thoughts as to where I might go from here?
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#2
phillpower2

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:welcome: ecclesia

Couple of questions if I may;
Is the stock 230W PSU still being used.
Is there an add on video card fitted or is the MBs onboard video chip being used.
How many sticks of Ram are there.
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#3
ecclesia

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Thanks for the welcome!

It's still using the stock power supply. I do have other known working supplies I could toss in if that might be the issue. The onboard video is in use. Also, there's only one 512mb stick of ram. I could swap that out and give it a shot. Do you think that either of these could be the problem?
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#4
phillpower2

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You are welcome ecclesia :thumbsup:

Can I ask what is presently installed on the HDD.
Do you have an OS disk and if so is it a full retail, Dell OEM, a system restore disk made specifically for the computer or a burned copy.

Do this less time consuming check first please, the computer will not boot up obviously and what we are doing is checking to see if there is any change in the behavior of the computer such as error beeps for example;

The following check requires the computer case to be opened so take the following safety precautions 1st, disconnect the power cord from the wall socket and take anti static precautions before touching anything inside, you can do this by touching a bare metal part of the case.

Remove the memory stick, blow out the memory slots the best that you can, reassemble the computer without the Ram fitted, turn on the power. make a note of what happens, power down the computer, repeat the above safety steps and insert the Ram in the memory slot that is the nearest to the CPU, reassemble and then power up the computer and let us know the outcome.
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