Question Help, Blank Screen Dell Dimension 5100

GBertolet

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Apr 17, 2015
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I was gifted a 2005 Dell Dimension 5100, 2.8 ghz, 160 gb hard drive, 4 gb ram. I don't know if it is a 32 or a 64 bit, as I have conflicting info. Originally Win XP, I am now running Win 7 32 bit. Worked great for 3 years, but upon last startup, I have a blank screen. Monitor works, as when I push monitor's menu bottom, monitor status light turns green, and verbage briefly comes up on screen, then changes back to amber. Computer powers up, fans run, power light is lit on mother board, and I can feel hard drive spinning. I replaced the video card already, still no go. Can anyone help me with what I can do next to isolate the problem? This is a secondary computer for me, and due to it's age, there is a monetary limit on how much I can justify spending. This will be more of a learning project. If I ultimately need parts, I will need help on selecting the correct ones for this computer. Thanks in advance.
 

GBertolet

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Apr 17, 2015
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I have another question. I read on some of the other posts involving no boot up, that there might be a reset button on the Dell. Is there one on the Dell Dimension 5100? If so where? I have an older Gateway, that when the computer comes on, and won't boot, there is a recessed button on the front, above the power switch, that you need a key or a pen to depress. Once depressed the computer comes to life.
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
No display after a video card swap, as long as the video card you used will work in that system normally, could be RAM, could be motherboard. There is no onboard video in that system? Did you try that if there is without an add-on video card?
 

GBertolet

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Apr 17, 2015
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I assume that the inboard video is a covered plug on the back of the motherboard. If so I tried it and no difference. I tried it with the video card still installed. does this matter? I removed the 4 memory cards (1G), one at a time, no difference. Trouble elsewhere?
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
I assume that the inboard video is a covered plug on the back of the motherboard. If so I tried it and no difference. I tried it with the video card still installed. does this matter? I removed the 4 memory cards (1G), one at a time, no difference. Trouble elsewhere?
Yes it matters, you need to remove the video card to use the onboard video to test things.
 

GBertolet

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Apr 17, 2015
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Removed video card, and retested onboard video. Still no joy. What can I do next? I don't have spares to swap out, to test hard drive and mother board with. Is there a reset or reboot pin or button motherboard?
 

hang-the-9

Titan
Moderator
Removed video card, and retested onboard video. Still no joy. What can I do next? I don't have spares to swap out, to test hard drive and mother board with. Is there a reset or reboot pin or button motherboard?
If you unplug the system and remove the CMOS silver flat battery for about 10 seconds that should clear the BIOS and may help. Also try with one RAM stick at a time or different RAM.
 

GBertolet

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Apr 17, 2015
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It was the motherboard. I bought an inexpensive replacement 3.0ghz board, from a parted out computer on ebay. A slight upgrade from the 2.8ghz original board. In swapping out the heatsink over the old CPU, I noticed all the heat grease was gone. I suspect the old CPU was cooked. The new board had one memory stick of DDR2, 533 and 4200 U, CL4 included. My original memory, was 4 sticks labeled as DDR2, 333 ,and 3200 U. I just put all the original ,memory back in. Would buying 3 more of the upgraded memory sticks make much of a difference in speed?
 

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