[SOLVED] I built a sleeper a few years ago, and it never posted. Not once. Help.

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
When I was about 12 I tried building a PC
Obviously this didn't work, so I got refunded for the mobo and I believe I was refunded for the power supply.

So then I waited and I bought this barebone Optiplex 3020. It came with a broken case fan, a working CPU cooler, a motherboard, and it's case. https://www.ebay.com/itm/DELL-OPTIPLEX-3020-MT-NO-CPU-MEMORY-OR-HDD/173448820093?ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649

I want this to work now.
I tried to install my 4770k, ram, hard disk, etc

This did not post. I remember the Orange LED on the motherboard was glowing, I was able to hear the hard drive spinning, and the CPU cooler was spinning, but there was no sign of any signal coming from the monitor. (The monitor said no signal)

The OptiPlex 3020 is not compatible with my CPU without a BIOS update, so I recently bought a Pentium G3260 off Amazon for 13 usd, which I thought was supported I am pretty sure it is.

The orange LED on the motherboard was glowing, but still, I got the same result. No signal.

According to Dell's website, it said that the if the orange LED is glowing, then it means that there is a problem.

I really want this thing to work.
 
Last edited:

jasonf2

Honorable
Oct 11, 2015
293
64
10,890
6
What specific questions do you have? Factory built systems like your optiplex can be particularly messy when trying to add non stock parts. Amber indicator lights per the manual.

Table 14. Power LED Diagnostics
Amber LED State White LED State Description
o o system is OFF
o breathing system is in sleep state
blinking o power supply unit (PSU) failure
steady o PSU is working but failed to fetch code
o steady system is ON
Amber LED
State
Description
2,1 system board failure
2,2 system board, PSU or PSU cabling failure
2,3 system board, memory or CPU failure
2, 4 coin-cell battery failure
2,5 corrupt BIOS
2,6 CPU conguration failure or CPU failure
2,7 memory modules are detected, but a memory failure
3,1 possible peripheral card or system board failure
3,2 possible USB failure
3,3 no memory modules are detected
3,4 possible system board error
3,5 memory modules are detected, but a memory conguration or compatibility error
3,6 possible system board resource and/or hardware failure
3,7 some other failure with messages on screen

So depending on the fail code you could have just about anything wrong.
I would dump bios first and check the error.
It is important to realize that you are trying to use integrated graphics on a factory spec board. You may not just be able to throw any CPU in and get it to work.
 
Reactions: 2plash6

jasonf2

Honorable
Oct 11, 2015
293
64
10,890
6
What specific questions do you have? Factory built systems like your optiplex can be particularly messy when trying to add non stock parts. Amber indicator lights per the manual.

Table 14. Power LED Diagnostics
Amber LED State White LED State Description
o o system is OFF
o breathing system is in sleep state
blinking o power supply unit (PSU) failure
steady o PSU is working but failed to fetch code
o steady system is ON
Amber LED
State
Description
2,1 system board failure
2,2 system board, PSU or PSU cabling failure
2,3 system board, memory or CPU failure
2, 4 coin-cell battery failure
2,5 corrupt BIOS
2,6 CPU conguration failure or CPU failure
2,7 memory modules are detected, but a memory failure
3,1 possible peripheral card or system board failure
3,2 possible USB failure
3,3 no memory modules are detected
3,4 possible system board error
3,5 memory modules are detected, but a memory conguration or compatibility error
3,6 possible system board resource and/or hardware failure
3,7 some other failure with messages on screen

So depending on the fail code you could have just about anything wrong.
I would dump bios first and check the error.
It is important to realize that you are trying to use integrated graphics on a factory spec board. You may not just be able to throw any CPU in and get it to work.
 
Reactions: 2plash6

jasonf2

Honorable
Oct 11, 2015
293
64
10,890
6
Also details are pretty limited here but dell had a nasty habit of using proprietary power supplies. Are you using the original or did you throw a standard ATX in? I am pretty sure that the OptiPlex of that generation had the proprietary 6 pin. Generally you could get a standard psu to bolt in (sometimes with a little cutting necessary) but they would not work as the motherboard would pick it up and not post.
 
Reactions: 2plash6

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
What specific questions do you have? Factory built systems like your optiplex can be particularly messy when trying to add non stock parts. Amber indicator lights per the manual.

Table 14. Power LED Diagnostics
Amber LED State White LED State Description
o o system is OFF
o breathing system is in sleep state
blinking o power supply unit (PSU) failure
steady o PSU is working but failed to fetch code
o steady system is ON
Amber LED
State
Description
2,1 system board failure
2,2 system board, PSU or PSU cabling failure
2,3 system board, memory or CPU failure
2, 4 coin-cell battery failure
2,5 corrupt BIOS
2,6 CPU conguration failure or CPU failure
2,7 memory modules are detected, but a memory failure
3,1 possible peripheral card or system board failure
3,2 possible USB failure
3,3 no memory modules are detected
3,4 possible system board error
3,5 memory modules are detected, but a memory conguration or compatibility error
3,6 possible system board resource and/or hardware failure
3,7 some other failure with messages on screen

So depending on the fail code you could have just about anything wrong.
I would dump bios first and check the error.
It is important to realize that you are trying to use integrated graphics on a factory spec board. You may not just be able to throw any CPU in and get it to work.
Ok. Sorry for the late reply. It was getting late yesterday.

Thank you for sending me this table. I believe the power button is beeping two times, and then beeping three times.
I think this means that I will have to replace some of the components.

OptiPlex's are cool how they can diagnose their own issues.

But is there a way I can detect which component(s) is broken?
 

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
Also details are pretty limited here but dell had a nasty habit of using proprietary power supplies. Are you using the original or did you throw a standard ATX in? I am pretty sure that the OptiPlex of that generation had the proprietary 6 pin. Generally you could get a standard psu to bolt in (sometimes with a little cutting necessary) but they would not work as the motherboard would pick it up and not post.
I am using the original one that was included. Even though I have another one. I believe I also have an OptiPlex 780 PSU.
 

jasonf2

Honorable
Oct 11, 2015
293
64
10,890
6
If you are getting a "2,3 system board, memory or CPU failure" that is about as ambiguous as it gets. The fact that you are using a cpu that is unknown, a board that is unknown and RAM that is unknown makes troubleshooting a parts switch game. As far as errors they get more specific, but you need a monitor up and working to get them.

My advice is free and you get what you pay for. Factory built units are almost impossible to beat price wise on a part for part comparison when new. This is because Dell (or whatever brand you are purchasing) is able to customize their parts on a level of scale to reduce price. So what this means is that while ASUS builds a mother board that has to be able to support potentially hundreds of RAM, CPU and graphics card combinations the factory builder builds to maybe 1-5. Asus's bios updates will be for future hardware support, but the factory builder update is only going to be for support purposes. You might get lucky if they continue the board model for future upgrades, but you might not. Because of this tight integration they take out every part that they don't need and often put cheap components in behind the scenes. That is the pricing magic.
While cheap new, the factory builds are a nightmare to upgrade or repair because of this. Because everything is custom you have to go back to the OEM to do anything. That is why that machine was scavenged and sold the way it was in the first place.

I know you don't want to hear this but honestly I would cut my losses with this machine. Rather than approaching it from a factory build get a cheap case, motherboard and power supply. You already have a cpu and hard drive that will work.
 
Reactions: 2plash6

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
You already have a cpu and hard drive that will work.
I was thinking of doing this lately. I was thinking of building a system with an MSI motherboard and 32gb of DDr3 memory.

But I have two problems with this.

  1. It would be cheaper to build a newer system.
  2. This system wouldn't be future proof. It would have an old i7 quad core, and DDr3 memory is very expensive, and DDr4 is much cheaper, and is also like three times faster.
 

jasonf2

Honorable
Oct 11, 2015
293
64
10,890
6
I was thinking of doing this lately. I was thinking of building a system with an MSI motherboard and 32gb of DDr3 memory.

But I have two problems with this.

  1. It would be cheaper to build a newer system.
  2. This system wouldn't be future proof. It would have an old i7 quad core, and DDr3 memory is very expensive, and DDr4 is much cheaper, and is also like three times faster.
I know how that goes but getting this machine operational on dell parts vs off the shelf has a pretty good chance of being in the same price range. And then you are still left with the same issues noted.
 
Reactions: 2plash6

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
I know how that goes but getting this machine operational on dell parts vs off the shelf has a pretty good chance of being in the same price range. And then you are still left with the same issues noted.
Ok. But I don't know if my 4770k is functional.

How do I get it tested?
 

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
I know how that goes but getting this machine operational on dell parts vs off the shelf has a pretty good chance of being in the same price range. And then you are still left with the same issues noted.
One last question, is there any place where I can sell my RAM and my 4770k hard drive,, and possibly sell the other parts? It would be too much of a hassle and too much of a risk to try to attempt to build a working PC using these parts.
The least I can do would be to sell them, because any modern Ryzen 3 or i3 system would outperform this i7, so it's probably not worth using it.

I wasted too much money on this build that doesn't function. is there any way I can sell them make back the money I wasted?
 

COLGeek

Cybernaut
Moderator
One last question, is there any place where I can sell my RAM and my 4770k hard drive,, and possibly sell the other parts? It would be too much of a hassle and too much of a risk to try to attempt to build a working PC using these parts.
The least I can do would be to sell them, because any modern Ryzen 3 or i3 system would outperform this i7, so it's probably not worth using it.

I wasted too much money on this build that doesn't function. is there any way I can sell them make back the money I wasted?
Craigslist. eBay. There is a Classifieds section here (see rules for posting first).

 
Reactions: 2plash6

2plash6

Prominent
BANNED
Jul 23, 2019
265
32
720
4
Craigslist. eBay. There is a Classifieds section here (see rules for posting first).

Ok. Thanks.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY