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Re: Need some help with diagnosing potential motherboard problem....

Discussion in 'Motherboards' started by Paul, Sep 29, 2011.

  1. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Instantaneous wrote:
    > Hi Everyone,
    > I'm new to the boards, but I've been reading many many threads and the
    > knowledge shown here is amazing.
    >
    > Maybe someone can help me with this issue:
    >
    > Computer won't get past HP splash screen to boot up. Esc, F1, F9, or
    > F10, F11 nothing works (but there are caveats, read further).
    >
    > This is the model:
    >
    > HP Pavilion p6320y Desktop PC running Win 7
    > http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/...link=ot_we/prodlink/en_us/4120661/loc:0&cc=us
    >
    > This is my motherboard:
    > http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/...tegory&cc=us&dlc=en&lc=en&product=4120661#N66
    >
    > Bought it as a refurb a while ago and am 5 mo out of warranty. D'oh.
    >
    > Troubleshooting steps:
    > (I remove the power cord and drain before changing HW. No mouse
    > connected, only USB keyboard. There is no PS/2 port.)
    >
    > (1) Removed all three 1TB SATA drives. Put them 1 by 1 into an old
    > eMachines running XP Pro. Drive with the OS on it registered many
    > errors by CHKDSK. All were fixed and there a few bad sectors on it
    > (Western Digital Caviar Green). Drive runs fine a secondary drive in
    > the eMachine. Other 2 drives are WD Black drives and are problem free
    > (no issues with CHKDSK).
    >
    > (2) Put only the OS drive back into the HP and powered up. No luck.
    > Still hangs at splash screen. ESC, Fx, nothing works. Hung.
    >
    > (3) Read a bunch of forums.
    >
    > (4) Disconnect the Flash reader at the reader itself (not the MOBO).
    > Reboot. Same issue. Hung. ESC, Fx, nothing works.
    >
    > (5) Disconnect the 2 front USB ports/speaker/mic by pulling cable from
    > MOBO.
    > Reboot. Same issue. Hung. ESC, Fx, nothing works.
    >
    > (6) Disconnect all SATA drives from MOBO. (CD drive and all HDD).
    > Reboot. Now ESC, F1, F9, F11, etc. work. I am now able to get into the
    > BIOS to see what's there (Change boot order, etc). I set the order to
    > boot from CD first, then HDD.
    > The HP diagnostics show that the CPU and Memory are good. It obviously
    > fails at the Hard Drives because none are connected.
    >
    > (7) So then I just reconnect the CD Drive and try to boot from it. (I
    > put in an Ubuntu CD). After restarting the computer, I get the same
    > hang. No ESC, Fx, works. Just hung. Now I'm starting to think this is
    > a SATA issue.
    >
    > (8) Thermal grease on the Northbridge probably not an issue because the
    > heatsink gets fairly hot.
    >
    > (9) Only thing I have not tried is booting from USB. Not sure if it's
    > worth the effort.
    >
    >
    > Any ideas on what my issue might be? I'm thinking motherboard but I
    > defer to your expertise.
    >
    > If I needed to replace it, I don't want to get the same model if it's
    > junk:
    > Manufacturer's motherboard name: Pegatron M2N78-LA
    > HP/Compaq name: Violet6-GL8E
    >
    > Would this one be a compatible replacement?
    > http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130295
    >
    > Thanks!!


    When you were in the BIOS, was there an option to disable full screen logo ?
    That's the first setting I change in a BIOS - disabling full screen logo
    allows any text error messages to show, while it attempts to boot.

    And if SATA booting isn't working, by all means, try a USB test. Even a USB
    memtest would be better than nothing.

    "Download - Auto-installer for USB Key (Win 9x/2k/xp/7) *NEW!*"
    http://www.memtest.org/download/4.20/memtest86 -4.20.usb.installer.zip

    You can progress from there, to a USB Linux Live if need be. (I made one
    the other day, with the built-in USB-Creator, but the software was painful
    to work with. It seemed to work OK, if copying from the physical Ubuntu CD,
    but less so if working from an ISO9660 file.)

    Paul
    Paul, Sep 29, 2011
    #1
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  2. Hi Paul,

    Good advice on disabling the splash screen, I had already done that i
    the BIOS and could see that the 4 memory sticks all came up clean. I'
    going by memory here but I don't recall any errors being logged. I
    just hung at a certain point when the SATA drive(s) were connected.

    I'll try out the USB memtest to see if that works.

    I also need to pull a working power supply from a working machine to se
    if that is the issue.

    Will keep you posted.

    I'm almost ready to pull the trigger on ordering a new motherboard t
    make a project out of this. I've never tried to replace a mobo befor
    and think that it would a fun and frustrating project to tackle
    Instantaneous, Sep 30, 2011
    #2
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  3. Paul

    rb Guest

    Instantaneous;1310942 Wrote:
    > Hi Paul,
    >
    > Good advice on disabling the splash screen, I had already done that i
    > the BIOS and could see that the 4 memory sticks all came up clean. I'
    > going by memory here but I don't recall any errors being logged. I
    > just hung at a certain point when the SATA drive(s) were connected.
    >
    > I'll try out the USB memtest to see if that works.
    >
    > I also need to pull a working power supply from a working machine to se
    > if that is the issue.
    >
    > Will keep you posted.
    >
    > I'm almost ready to pull the trigger on ordering a new motherboard t
    > make a project out of this. I've never tried to replace a mobo befor
    > and think that it would a fun and frustrating project to tackle.


    The MSI 880gm-e41 mainboard you selected is ok, but it lacks USB3 an
    SATA3(6GB) support. So if you intend to keep the new mainboard for 3-
    years, consider a board with at least USB3....such as... Biostar A880GU
    w/USB3 , TA880GU3+ w/ USB3 & SATA3(6GB
    rb, Oct 1, 2011
    #3
  4. I'll keep that in mind when choosing a new board.

    I did try the USB bootable memtest and I was able to successfully boo
    from the USB drive. The memtest completed with no errors reported. S
    I guess that's a good sign that my RAM is good.

    The HP diagnostics reports that the CPU is good.

    So I guess it's down to the motherboard (SATA controller) or the PSU.
    Since I don't have another PSU handy to test it out, I'm just going t
    order a new mainboard and give it a go.

    Newbie Question: Will I need to remove and reapply the thermal greas
    on the CPU's heatsink when I pull the CPU off one board and install o
    the new board
    Instantaneous, Oct 3, 2011
    #4
  5. Paul

    rb Guest

    Instantaneous;1311296 Wrote:
    >
    > Newbie Question: Will I need to remove and reapply the thermal greas
    > on the CPU's heatsink when I pull the CPU off one board and install o
    > the new board


    Yes

    A few tips
    To separate the CPU from heatsink, you may need to use a slight twistin
    motion

    Once separated, clean the old paste off the CPU and heatsink. Rubbin
    alcohol works fine... apply a few drops to the old paste and let it si
    for a minute till the old paste softens, then wipe it clean with
    lint-free cloth(coffee filter works nicely). May need a few treatment
    to remove all the old paste. :

    Reinstalling CPU and Heatsink
    Insert CPU into socket on mainboard
    Put a dot of thermal paste on the center of CPU....dot should be a ta
    smaller than a pea. (Idea is to get a paper-thin layer of paste over a
    much of your CPU as possible.
    Next, press heatsink straight down and with ever so slight twistin
    motion so that the thermal paste spreads evenly in all directions.
    Lock down heatsink/fan...done
    rb, Oct 3, 2011
    #5
  6. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Instantaneous wrote:
    > I'll keep that in mind when choosing a new board.
    >
    > I did try the USB bootable memtest and I was able to successfully boot
    > from the USB drive. The memtest completed with no errors reported. So
    > I guess that's a good sign that my RAM is good.
    >
    > The HP diagnostics reports that the CPU is good.
    >
    > So I guess it's down to the motherboard (SATA controller) or the PSU.
    > Since I don't have another PSU handy to test it out, I'm just going to
    > order a new mainboard and give it a go.
    >
    > Newbie Question: Will I need to remove and reapply the thermal grease
    > on the CPU's heatsink when I pull the CPU off one board and install on
    > the new board?


    I always apply fresh thermal compound.

    In some cases, the material present may be reusable. If it
    gets scratched up, or if it's the "phase change" kind which is
    as hard as a rock when cold, you're probably better just
    cleaning it off. Some can be removed with solvents, but some
    requires "scraping and scrubbing".

    (These are proper solvents. But I just use isopropyl alcohol, which
    isn't the right solvent, but does wet the cleaning cloth enough to aid
    in cleaning - i.e. smears the stuff around.)

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100010

    You want a thin layer of paste. You want maximal surface area of contact.
    If the stuff is scratched or if there are hard ridges that
    prevent the heatsink from properly seating, then the CPU is going
    to get hot.

    There are actually a fairly large number of thermal interface
    materials, and some aren't used that often. Which is why it's
    kinda hard to cover every possibility.

    I've been using the same tube of thermal paste for years now,
    and never seem to use it all up. So if you pick up a tube, it
    could last a while. I think that's why some of the cheapskate
    companies, have come out with smaller applicators - so you'll
    run out faster :)

    So yes, pick up a tube of something, so you're ready for anything.

    Paul
    Paul, Oct 4, 2011
    #6
  7. Thanks rb and Paul! Appreciate your tips on the thermal past
    removal/application. I used your info as well as info gleaned from man
    youtube videos and was able to successfully get the old processo
    installed on the new board.

    I ended up buying this one:
    ASUS M4A88T-M/USB3
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131660

    Doesn't have SATA6 which is just fine with me. I'm not a performanc
    user anyways, just need it for bookkeeping, internet, email, an
    photo/video storage.

    For others out there that are replacing their faulty M2N78-LA Pegatro
    boards from HP, you'll need to use the front panel pin diagram from th
    manual to determine which pins from the HP case's front connector t
    connect to the power and gnd pins on your new mobo:
    http://www.scribd.com/doc/45660126/M2N78-LA-ASUS-Pegatron-Manual-Rev-3

    Since the pin layouts on my original HP board and the new ASUS boar
    don't match, I have not connected the power led or HDD led wires. I'l
    have to get a couple new connectors to do this.

    For now, the power is up and working and the computer boots up with th
    new board. My original HDD's OS is unrecoverable so I'm doing a backu
    of data from that drive and will reinstall a fresh copy of Win 7 x64.

    So far so good! Thanks to all the help of the folks on the forum
    Instantaneous, Oct 7, 2011
    #7
  8. Paul

    rb Guest

    Instantaneous;1311784 Wrote:
    > Thanks rb and Paul! Appreciate your tips on the thermal past
    > removal/application. I used your info as well as info gleaned from man
    > youtube videos and was able to successfully get the old processo
    > installed on the new board.
    >
    > I ended up buying this one:
    > ASUS M4A88T-M/USB3
    >
    > Doesn't have SATA6 which is just fine with me. I'm not a performanc
    > user anyways, just need it for bookkeeping, internet, email, an
    > photo/video storage.
    > ...
    > For now, the power is up and working and the computer boots up with th
    > new board. My original HDD's OS is unrecoverable so I'm doing a backu
    > of data from that drive and will reinstall a fresh copy of Win 7 x64.
    >
    > So far so good! Thanks to all the help of the folks on the forum!


    Nice board!

    Oh and your welcome! :
    rb, Oct 7, 2011
    #8
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