Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 6:23 am

This is odd set of events so it's hard for to determine what is wrong. I was playing Half Life 2 and it's really the first game I've played on it that could really push the limits. It's older game so I had everything on highest setting.

When a new level went to load and the time it should of completed loading I got a screen that I was unable to read because it turned off really quick but it may have been the "your computer does not have enough power" screen. This was a low resolution screen. It rebooted successfully by itself, there was nothing in the event log and I wish I had spent more time to see if there was other logs.

It happened again, this time it would not reboot.

I unplugged everything, pulled the ram, switched the ram, tried one stick, tried reseating cables and cards etc. I decided to get a new PSU because if this mobo or CPU is cooked I'm going to need one anyway, the one in it is about 3 or 4 years old and I'm not going to put it into a new computer. After installing the new PSU it booted and I thought the problem was solved.

Was playing the same game again yesterday and the same thing happened. I can't get it to boot.

At this point the only thing connected to it is the RAM and the CPU. When you turn it on the CPU fan will spin for 10 about seconds. There is little LED panel for codes and it gets to 32(cpu PEI initialization). The CPU fan will stop spinning , sometimes it jerks a little like it's trying to spin. It will run for a few seconds at least according to the activity of the system fans , right before it shuts off I can see the little light on the main bios switch to the backup briefly. It will power off and try to boot gain with same sequence.

One thing that may happened is I corrupted both BIOS's. I think the scenario that might of happened is the PSU was bad and this gsme put the final nail in coffin and the BIOS got corrupted at the same time. With the bad PSU it can no longer boot because of the bad PSU. With the new PSU installed if I had it switched to main BIOS which is corrupted it would have automagically copied the backup. Since I had manually on the backup I'm now working with one BIOS which again got corrupted possibly because the new PSU is still underpowered. It's the only thing that makes sense since the new PSU allowed me too boot.

In any event I ordered a BIOS chip, it was only $15 so it's worth a shot but I have to get it soldered on. It can fit on top of pencil eraser and has 8 legs that need to be soldered to the board. It's not something I have the tools, experience or skill to do. If anyone in the area has an interest in a case of beer let me know.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite


Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: D-frost On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 8:09 am

Richard,
If this is an 'old' mother board: There probably is a switch, or a jumper(to remove), that will default the mother(system) board back to factory settings. I would try this before trying to replace the chip. Second, I would try to reload the BIOS from the web. If you try to replace the chip with 'Radio Shack' tools, you may do more damage. Just my $.02, good luck.
Cheers
D-frost
 
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Rob R. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 8:16 am

Removing the CMOS battery should also reset everything.
Rob R.
 
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: waldo lemieux On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 12:29 pm

Smitty's been on recently with some repair tips. The last one he seemed to have an overheat problem so he added ventilation :shock:
waldo lemieux
 
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: davidmcbeth3 On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 12:54 pm

Try a safe mode boot up? Or boot up to bios ?

Just asking
davidmcbeth3
 
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 2:12 pm

D-frost wrote:Richard,
If this is an 'old' mother board: There probably is a switch, or a jumper(to remove), that will default the mother(system) board back to factory settings.


This has a dual BIOS, there is two chips. It will automagically copy the backup to the main chip if it gets corrupted. There is also a switch to manually switch between them. There is also another button to manually induce copying the backup.

From reading my understanding is one way to corrupt the bios is overvoltage, there is factory turbo mode supported by the Intel chip I have for overclocking and in both cases it was on.

I think what happened here is when the main bios got corrupted the PSU failed at the same time. I can't even get it to turn the power light on now so I'm fairly confident the old PSU is in fact toast. When I installed the new PSU what I failed to realize is the BIOS was manually switched to the backup so it was never copied to the main BIOS chip. I must of corrupted the second BIOS. It's the only conclusion I can draw that makes sense since I was able to boot with new PSU without any issue.

I would try to reload the BIOS from the web.


Once a computer gets to this state it can't be reloaded AFAIK, you need functioning BIOS to reflash the BIOS. That is why there is two chips, If I had it switched to main BIOS when I installed the PSU it would have copied the good backup over the corrupted copy and I'd be back to two functioning copies.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 2:18 pm

Rob R. wrote:Removing the CMOS battery should also reset everything.


There is actually a button on mine for this, that didn't work. I unplugged everything including taking out the battery and letting it sit overnight and still no go.

As I said I think the problem here is I've corrupted the backup. On most MOBO's there is no manual switch so what I think happened is not possible on most of them.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: davidmcbeth3 On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 2:36 pm

Have ya popped out the HD ? To check it and copy important files?
davidmcbeth3
 
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 2:50 pm

This has nothing to do with the HD's, I won't be popping them out. I may be popping in a new motherboard if I can't fix this one.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 2:54 pm

D-frost wrote:Richard,
If you try to replace the chip with 'Radio Shack' tools, you may do more damage. Just my $.02, good luck.


I'm not going to do this myself, the radio shack tools as long as they are made for small electronics will work fine in the right hands.

It's the one with the red dot, in my case i have two sitting side by side. For some perspective the battery holder to the right has battery a little smaller than a quarter.

Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: davidmcbeth3 On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 4:57 pm

Neat vid ... I have not soldered stuff on a motherboard in years ... I used to use solder paste that I modified slightly.

Of course, this guy did not have the wifey yelling "you going to ruin that thing!" ...
davidmcbeth3
 
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: D-frost On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:16 pm

Richard,
If you find someone local to solder with a low heat pencil iron, I would suggest the following: cut the leads at the chip. Stand the 8 leads straight up. Piggy back the new chip over the leads, and solder leg to leg. Stay away from the runs on the mother board. They are cheap crap, and it doesn't take much to ruin.
P.S.: If you have a good nose, and the mother board smells burnt(as in electrical), throw it away.
Cheers
D-frost
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Chubby
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Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Black_And_Blue On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:31 pm

your computer has headcrabs from ravenholm, the only solution is to smash it with a crow bar ;-)
Black_And_Blue
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Alaska 140

Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Richard S. On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 7:04 pm

Black_And_Blue wrote:your computer has headcrabs from ravenholm, the only solution is to smash it with a crow bar ;-)


If this chip fails to fix the issue I prefer the stump and axe method myself. The bright side is I'll have newer mobo and CPU, was already looking on Newegg. :) I'd buy the same one to avoid the hassle of reinstalling OS but I can only find used ones in the $170 range, I could have new one shipped from overseas for about $1k. Think it was about $200 when I bought it.
Richard S.
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Van Wert VA1200
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/Anthracite

Re: Bricked my computer, anybody do solder work in NEPA?

PostBy: Horace On: Sat Feb 27, 2016 9:38 pm

Richard S. wrote:If this chip fails to fix the issue I prefer the stump and axe method myself. The bright side is I'll have newer mobo and CPU, was already looking on Newegg. :) I'd buy the same one to avoid the hassle of reinstalling OS but I can only find used ones in the $170 range, I could have new one shipped from overseas for about $1k. Think it was about $200 when I bought it.


Why do you have to reinstall the OS? I switched comps a couple years ago where the ONLY thing that I kept was the hard drives. Both Linux and Win 7 booted right up. It may have farted around for an extra few seconds while it found everything, but everything worked.
Horace
 
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