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Question Dell Optiplex 360 won't POST

Nov 12, 2019
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Hi there, I recently recommissioned a Dell OptiPlex 360 that was sitting around for years in my pop's apartment.

I figured it would be a good project to learn Linux on and boy was I happy when I was able to breath some new life into old hardware!

It worked fine for web browsing for 3 days straight, quick with an SSD and Linux Lite, no problems whatsoever.

I go to switch it on this morning and the on light stays amber (it's normally green) the CPU fan goes to MAX and there is no display output.

It seems that the MoBo has died. But why? It was working fine when I shut it down, no crashes, nothing.

I am working off the assumption that the PSU is fine because it is supplying power. The voltage or amperage could be wrong but I'm never gonna know that am I.

I've ordered a replacement MoBo from eBay fpr £10 but I am worried if I use that and if the MoBo has been fried by another component (most likely the PSU) it will fry that, too.

A new PSU would be another £10 (which I know isn't much) but it's still double the cost on something that is worth nothing and if I do that I might as well jump on eBay and buy another OptiPlex for £40.

So I'd like to pool some other users' experience of MoBo's dying and if a MoBo could be fried by a PSU and if a PSU is supplying power could it still be frying components without me realising.

I should say that the DVD drive still works and there is an amber light on the MoBo and the ethernet port light also works.


EDIT: I forgot, I should say what I've tried. So far pulling the CMOS battery, pulling the RAM, reseated the CPU, that's all I can think of.
 
Nov 12, 2019
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I've searched up the symptoms for a dead cmos battery and they don't fit, so no.

Edit: Just rummaged through a box of old parts and found a packet with 1 CR2032 in it. It's probably at least a half decade old, but I tried it in the MoBo and still no banana!

So either the current battery that was working perfectly has died suddenly (unlikely) and the new but old in age terms battery is a dud (also unlikely) or the problem is NOT CMOS battery related!

So that leaves me thinking, MoBo or PSU.

The PSU works in the sense that it turns on, but of course I can't tell what voltage, amps and watts it is delivering to the system.

Therefore if the PSU has fried the old MoBo, dare I risk trying it with the replacement MoBo!?

All test have been carried out bread boarded, btw.

This system was working running Linux Lite for 3 days straight before not turning on properly this morning, BTW.
 
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Nov 12, 2019
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I started up the system this morning and it POST'ed just fine:??:
In the SAME breadbaorded configuration in which it didn't post yesterday.

It just started up absolutely fine and I'm posting this message on it as we speak.

Yesterday I switched out the BIOS battery and it didn't make an iota of difference.

Today, with the old BIOS battery in, it started and ran fine.

Just in case, I swapped the new battery in as when it started this morning on the POST screen it did say that the battery voltage was low (but still started up on it just fine).

But that can't have been the cause of it not starting at all.

So now I've got a spare MoBo arriving which I may or may not need.

If it's not the MoBo, it must be a faulty power supply.

Any input would certainly be appreciated!
 
Nov 12, 2019
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Guys, it's doing it, AGAIN.

Shut down perfectly last night.

Go to start it up this morning and amber light, fan gradually ramps to maximum. This behaviour is with a new CMOS battery installed.

This is my only PC at the moment, I am typing this from my phone.

ANY ideas!?

Edit: I've just power cycled it 6x and now it has POST'ed correctly and I am typing this update from it.

WHAT is the problem!?
 
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Nov 12, 2019
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Right, I was using it for YouTube which it was running fine, but then it froze up and I couldn't recover it, so I switched it off.

And sure enough when I went to switch it back on, the fan slowly ramped up to max, the power light went amber instead of green and there was no display output.

WHAT the crap is going on.
 

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