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Question Newly built gaming system, barely powers on?

Jul 7, 2020
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My son and I just finished building up a new gaming system: Intel i9-10900K, ASRock Z490 Extreme4 motherboard (Socket 1200), EVGA GeForce RTX 2080 Super graphics card, 2GB SSD, 850W Power Supply.

The big day came, we turned on power. Many LEDs lit up inside. Pressed the power switch on top of the NZXT 510 case, a white ring around that power button lit up for about half a second, then went dark again. The inside LEDs stayed lit up, but it did nothing further. Never any signal to the monitor, or other signs of life, just the internal LEDs staying on.

Checked all cables, found one (6-pin CPU Power cable) from power supply, not connected to the motherboard. The 4-pin CPU cable next to it on the motherboard, was correctly plugged in. Plugged the 6-pin cable in in, powered up again, same behavior: Internal LEDs came on and stayed, and when I pressed the power switch on the case, white ring lit up for maybe 1/2 second and went out again. Pressed the power button on the case again, nothing, this time the white ring didn't even light up for 1/2 sec.

Only way I can get the ring around the power switch to light up even briefly, is to turn off the main switch on the power supply, turn it back on, and then press the power button on the case again. White circle there lights up briefly and goes out, and won't respond to more button-presses.

Does this ring a bell with any of you experienced system builders? Can anyone say, "Oh, that happened to my system too, here's what turned out to be wrong with mine etc." ?
 

Gerald6049

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Jul 7, 2020
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Oops, sorry, it was an 8-pin CPU power cable, that at first was not plugged in to the motherboard, then I plugged it in, the system still responded as described.

It is in the upper left corner of the picture of the motherboard at the link you specified. The 8-pin and 4-pin connectors on the motherboard are side by side.
 
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Gerald6049

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Oops, sorry, it was an 8-pin CPU power cable, that at first was not plugged in to the motherboard, then I plugged it in, the system still responded as described.

It is in the upper left corner of the picture of the motherboard at the link you specified. The 8-pin and 4-pin connectors on the motherboard are side by side.
Yeah, make sure the 24Pin, and 8 + 4 Pin is connected. and also the 6/8 Pin for the GPU.
If they still not working, try reset the BIOS.

And make sure the power cord for On/Off button case is plugged in correctly to the Front Panel header.
 
The big day came, we turned on power. Many LEDs lit up inside. Pressed the power switch on top of the NZXT 510 case, a white ring around that power button lit up for about half a second, then went dark again. The inside LEDs stayed lit up, but it did nothing further. Never any signal to the monitor, or other signs of life, just the internal LEDs staying on.

Only way I can get the ring around the power switch to light up even briefly, is to turn off the main switch on the power supply, turn it back on, and then press the power button on the case again. White circle there lights up briefly and goes out, and won't respond to more button-presses.
Check the motherboard LED error lights at the bottom right of the board to see if any light up.

How long did you let the system sit after turning it on from the power switch? Let it sit for a bit and see if it turns on, but if it doesn't turn on in around 20 seconds you may need to pull the CPU out to reseat it.
 
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Gerald6049 and Third-Eye, thank you for your help. This is very useful to me, I'm learning hand over fist.

Gerald6049, how do I reset the BIOS? I've seen no life from the USB keyboard and mouse I plugged in, and gotten no signal from the monitor, it remains blank. That was literally the first powerup, we have not loaded Windows 10 64-bit yet.

Third-Eye, I powered the system off with the switch on the power supply. Waited a moment to let it settle, then as my son watched the LED error lights, I switched the power supply on again. No flashes from any of the LED error lights, no steady-on, they all remained off. Then pressed the power button on top of the case. Two of the LED error lights flashed briefly, marked CPU and DRAM. They flashed once and went dark again, with the same on-time (1/2 sec) as the white ring around the case pushbutton. Subsequent presses of the button got us no more flashes from any of the LED error lights.
 
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Gerald6049

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Gerald6049 and Third-Eye, thank you for your help. This is very useful to me, I'm learning hand over fist.

Gerald6049, how do I reset the BIOS? I've seen no life from the USB keyboard and mouse I plugged in, and gotten no signal from the monitor, it remains blank. That was literally the first powerup, we have not loaded Windows 10 64-bit yet.
Pulled out power source, then pulled out battery CMOS. Wait for 3-5 minutes, then Insert in.


and make sure the power cord from case plugged in correctly to the front panel header.
 
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Gerald6049, thanks, I'll do that. The battery is partly hidden by the Graphics card, so we may do that first. If no luck, then we'll pull the CPU cooler and re-seat the CPU.

Something I'm curious about: This motherboard and CPU can run without a graphics card, right? Wouldn't be a gaming machine, but at least it might run, show the BIOS, and maybe even let me load the operating system. I'm trying to eliminate parts that may or may not be contributing to the problem here.

I might pull the graphics card, remove-pause-replace the clock battery, and power it up from there, to see if it makes any difference. If that shows improvement, then maybe replace the graphics card and try it again.

If then it doesn't run, we might have narrowed it down to the graphics card, motherboard around the graphics card, or power supply that can't put out its rated current to the graphics card.

A reasonable approach?
 
Gerald6049, thanks, I'll do that. The battery is partly hidden by the Graphics card, so we may do that first. If no luck, then we'll pull the CPU cooler and re-seat the CPU.

Something I'm curious about: This motherboard and CPU can run without a graphics card, right? Wouldn't be a gaming machine, but at least it might run, show the BIOS, and maybe even let me load the operating system. I'm trying to eliminate parts that may or may not be contributing to the problem here.

I might pull the graphics card, remove-pause-replace the clock battery, and power it up from there, to see if it makes any difference. If that shows improvement, then maybe replace the graphics card and try it again.

If then it doesn't run, we might have narrowed it down to the graphics card, motherboard around the graphics card, or power supply that can't put out its rated current to the graphics card.

A reasonable approach?
If the bios reset doesn't fix it, take out and reseat the memory modules and take out the GPU to test without it, before reseating the CPU. Make sure the modules are installed in slots A2 and B2.

|CPU Socket| |A1|A2|B1|B2|
 
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Gerald6049

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Something I'm curious about: This motherboard and CPU can run without a graphics card, right? Wouldn't be a gaming machine, but at least it might run, show the BIOS, and maybe even let me load the operating system.
Yeah. you're right.
if they're working without graphic card, then you have find the issue.

But i think that's not the issue since they all brand new. Anyway, it never hurts to try.
 
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Well, tried all of the above. NO change in the system's response.

1.) Lifted out the graphics card, powered on, same system response.
That means, when we turned on the power supply, the pretty LEDs inside the case came on. Pressed the Power pushbutton on top of the case, the CPU and DRAM LEDS flashed briefly, simultaneous with the white ring around the case's Power pushbutton. Let it continue for a few minutes, nothing else happened. Pressed the Power pushbutton on top again to turn off, no change. Pressed the Power pushbutton again (to turn on), no change, even the LEDs didn't flash this time and neither did the white ring around the pushbutton. Pretty LEDs inside stayed on throughout these procedures.

2.) Shut down and powered off the PS. Shorted between two prongs that the manual said would reset the CMOS variables, waited a minute, removed the shorting cable, powered on (still without the graphics card), same system response.

3.) Shut down and powered off. Removed the 2032 CMOS battery for 2 minutes, put it back in, powered back on. Same system response.

4.) Shut down and powered off. Removed and replaced the RAM modules (two 16GB modules). Powered on, same response.

5.) Shut down and powered off the PS. Removed the CPU cooler, wiped off the thermal compound. Re-seated the CPU carefully. Applied more thermal compound, replaced the CPU cooler, checked all cables. Still did not put in the Graphics card. Powered on, same system response.

Hmm, I feel like we're running out of things to test. Sounds like we're down to a possible damaged CPU, possible damaged socket it sits in, slight chance of damaged RAM modules.

The CPU and DRAM error LEDS on the motherboard, flashed briefly at every initial poweron, as noted above. Does this mean that the CPU was at least working to the point where it could flash those two LEDS, i.e. the CPU wasn't completely dead? Or is flashing those LEDS, a function carried out by the motherboard itself, independent of any CPU action? Might I have a completely dead CPU/Socket set?
 
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The CPU and DRAM error LEDS on the motherboard, flashed briefly at every initial poweron, as noted above. Does this mean that the CPU was at least working to the point where it could flash those two LEDS, i.e. the CPU wasn't completely dead? Or is flashing those LEDS, a function carried out by the motherboard itself, independent of any CPU action? Might I have a completely dead CPU/Socket set?
It's possible a CPU pin is bent out of position. Another possibility could be something is causing a short circuit, like a extra motherboard mounting stand-off is touching the bottom or an exposed wire touching the motherboard. The motherboard could be faulty in some way or the PSU could be faulty. The CPU is the least likely to be faulty part, but that doesn't rule it out.

I would check thoroughly the CPU socket for bent pins and fix any you find. If that isn't the problem, I would RMA the motherboard from where you bought it for a replacement or if they won't take it back, RMA with the manufacturer. You might want to also RMA the PSU for a replacement first, just to be sure that you don't possibly damage a replacement motherboard, but it's probably not necessary.
 

Gerald6049

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Jun 9, 2020
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Well, tried all of the above. NO change in the system's response.

1.) Lifted out the graphics card, powered on, same system response.
That means, when we turned on the power supply, the pretty LEDs inside the case came on. Pressed the Power pushbutton on top of the case, the CPU and DRAM LEDS flashed briefly, simultaneous with the white ring around the case's Power pushbutton. Let it continue for a few minutes, nothing else happened. Pressed the Power pushbutton on top again to turn off, no change. Pressed the Power pushbutton again (to turn on), no change, even the LEDs didn't flash this time and neither did the white ring around the pushbutton. Pretty LEDs inside stayed on throughout these procedures.

2.) Shut down and powered off the PS. Shorted between two prongs that the manual said would reset the CMOS variables, waited a minute, removed the shorting cable, powered on (still without the graphics card), same system response.

3.) Shut down and powered off. Removed the 2032 CMOS battery for 2 minutes, put it back in, powered back on. Same system response.

4.) Shut down and powered off. Removed and replaced the RAM modules (two 16GB modules). Powered on, same response.

5.) Shut down and powered off the PS. Removed the CPU cooler, wiped off the thermal compound. Re-seated the CPU carefully. Applied more thermal compound, replaced the CPU cooler, checked all cables. Still did not put in the Graphics card. Powered on, same system response.

Hmm, I feel like we're running out of things to test. Sounds like we're down to a possible damaged CPU, possible damaged socket it sits in, slight chance of damaged RAM modules.

The CPU and DRAM error LEDS on the motherboard, flashed briefly at every initial poweron, as noted above. Does this mean that the CPU was at least working to the point where it could flash those two LEDS, i.e. the CPU wasn't completely dead? Or is flashing those LEDS, a function carried out by the motherboard itself, independent of any CPU action? Might I have a completely dead CPU/Socket set?
Like @Third-Eye said, RMA will be a good step. Instead wasting your time to indentify the issue. But make sure is there a CPU pin bent or not. Bent pins will not approved for RMA.
 
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Hmm, was afraid of that, though I figured some RMA'ing would be in my future.

Coupla more questions:
1.) Is this Intel i9-10900K CPU, static sensitive? I've seen Youtube videos where people are flipping one around almost like a poker chip.
2.) Static aside, the CPU looks almost indestructible. It has no pins. Nothing but a zillion tiny pads (actually 1,200 I guess), flat on the bottom surface. To break something on it, would take a hammer and chisel almost. Is my impression accurate?
3.) How possible is it to bend or break a pin on the socket it goes in? I'm having difficulty even seeing pins on the socket. There seem to be tiny leaned-over fingers, but they are so tiny that even with a magnifying glass they are almost impossible to see. Are those socket pins supposed to lean slightly closer to the socket surface when a CPU is placed on top and clamped down? How often does somebody bend one of those? Hard to tell if a pin is bent if you can barely see the damned thing.
 

Gerald6049

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Jun 9, 2020
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1.) Is this Intel i9-10900K CPU, static sensitive? I've seen Youtube videos where people are flipping one around almost like a poker chip.
Static issue is rarely happens. As long as your finger is clean and not wet when install the CPU it will be fine.

2.) Static aside, the CPU looks almost indestructible. It has no pins. Nothing but a zillion tiny pads (actually 1,200 I guess), flat on the bottom surface. To break something on it, would take a hammer and chisel almost. Is my impression accurate?
Intel CPU doesn't have pins, only flat bottom. Ignore them, if they are looks fine, clean and shiny.

3.) How possible is it to bend or break a pin on the socket it goes in? I'm having difficulty even seeing pins on the socket. There seem to be tiny leaned-over fingers, but they are so tiny that even with a magnifying glass they are almost impossible to see. Are those socket pins supposed to lean slightly closer to the socket surface when a CPU is placed on top and clamped down? How often does somebody bend one of those? Hard to tell if a pin is bent if you can barely see the damned thing.
Wrong placement when put the CPU into the socket, and when you lock the CPU socket, the CPU will press the pin and make it bent,

Here is the example CPU ins bent
 
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Damn, Gerald, where do you get such fantastic photos???

Is that an actual FGA 1200 that mounts an i9-10900K? Or a different socket that simply has similar or identical pins? Either way is good, but I'm wondering if my socket has a juncture between two fields of pins, as your shows.

After all the work he did building his computer, Son is not going to like tearing it apart again, but he's learning what it's like to build a high-performance system. We start tomorrow morning.

First thing is to measure all power supply voltages, when I first turn on the power supply, and then when I press the power-on pushbutton at the top of the case for its traditional 1/2 sec of runtime before the LED trouble lights go off. About the only thing that would cause an 850W power supply to shut down that fast (if it's shutting down) is a direct short or a major overcurrent condition. Maybe I can isolate which voltage is getting shorted, if that's even what's happening. But I would guess I would have seen smoke if that was happening.

Second thing is to check all cables, make sure each cable is in the correct socket at each end, pushed fully in, and that we haven't left any cables out. Not easy since that monster cooler is in the way of many of them, the case and its fans are in the way of most of the rest, and the Power Supply is in the basement. I pretty much did that once already, but can't call it 100% certain.

If they're correct, we might disassemble most of it and lay the motherboard on the anti-static bench with the Power Supply on one side and the case with its power switches etc. on the other, wire it all together, and see if it runs, breadboard style. That might tell us whether something on the motherboard is touching metal in the case, as well as exposing a lot of handy test points.

If no difference, then I'll demount the cooler and check the socket for bent/broken pins as your magnificent picture shows.
 

Gerald6049

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Damn, Gerald, where do you get such fantastic photos???

Is that an actual FGA 1200 that mounts an i9-10900K? Or a different socket that simply has similar or identical pins? Either way is good, but I'm wondering if my socket has a juncture between two fields of pins, as your shows.
The pict is from google source. It's not socket 1200, but the pins is similar for all intel CPU.

If they're correct, we might disassemble most of it and lay the motherboard on the anti-static bench with the Power Supply on one side and the case with its power switches etc. on the other, wire it all together, and see if it runs, breadboard style. That might tell us whether something on the motherboard is touching metal in the case, as well as exposing a lot of handy test points.
Yeah, will be easier for you to check and swapped the component. Then I will wait for next update.
 
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Well, using an analog meter with a needle ($10 Radio Shack special, I don't have a scope), we found that the 12V, 5V, and 3.3V, spring up with correct polarity when we turn on the power pushbutton on top of the case, and immediately drop back down to zero in half a second or less. I'm guessing -12V does it too, but no handy way to measure that one.

Couple possible reasons that could be happening.

(a) A direct short from power to ground somewhere, resulting in an overcurrent condition that the Power Supply detects and automatically shuts down. Maybe if any one of the voltages shows and overcurrent, the Power Supply cuts them all off for safety's sake.

Possible causes: Could be a cable put in wrong, or a motherboard mounting standoff touching a power bus etc. on the bottom of the motherboard as you mentioned above. Or a defective power supply. Or a defective filter cap on the motherboard, PSU or other assembly, that fails shorted instead of failing open (I ran into a few of those while doing power supplies for Carefusion back in the day).

Any other possibilities?

All I've got so far. Ah'll be bock. Might take the motherboard out of the case next and breadboard it as mentioned earlier. Probably not as easy as it sounds, things never are.
 
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Got another question.

Our system has no mechanical hard disks. It has only one 2TB, M2, nVME solid-state disk, which we put in the M2_1 slot on the motherboard. The intention is that that 2TB SSD will hold the operating system and all the disk-bound data (obviously, since there is no mechanical HDD).

Next to that M2_1 connector slot, is five PCIE slots, two big ones and three little. They are all empty since we temporarily removed the Graphics card, which will eventually go in the PCIE1 slot. Near the opposite edge from the PCIE connectors, are four small connectors marked SATA_0, SATA_1, SATA_2, and SATA_3. Our 850W power supply has four 6-pin outputs marked IDE/SATA, and four cables that appear to go from those to the SATA connectors on the motherboard.

Since I believe we have no SATA or IDE disks, we did not use the cables from the power supply IDE/SATA outputs, to the SATA connectors. All four motherboard SATA connectors, have never had a cable plugged into them, during all this testing.

Was that a no-no? Should we plug in one (or all four) cables from the power supply IDE/SATA to the four SATA connectors on the motherboard? Whether we're using any SATA devices or not?

I hate being stupid, though one would expect I'm getting used to it.

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Well, I told a little lie. I do NOT have any cables that can go from the 6-pin power supply connector, to the small SATA connector on the motherboard.

I have cables with a small SATA connector on either end, that won't plug into the power supply which only has Molex connectors.

I have cables with 6-pin Molex connectors, but those cables have no small SATA connectors. They have larger flat connectors of a type I've never seen before.

Are those small SATA connectors on the motherboard, to be plugged directly into a SATA device such as a mechanical HDD? And the mechanical HDD has a separate power connection that DOES go to the power supply's 6-pin Molex connector?

It's starting to look to me like you CAN'T plug anything into those four small SATA connectors on this motherboard, unless you're using a SATA device. Correct?
 
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Well, using an analog meter with a needle ($10 Radio Shack special, I don't have a scope), we found that the 12V, 5V, and 3.3V, spring up with correct polarity when we turn on the power pushbutton on top of the case, and immediately drop back down to zero in half a second or less. I'm guessing -12V does it too, but no handy way to measure that one.

Couple possible reasons that could be happening.

(a) A direct short from power to ground somewhere, resulting in an overcurrent condition that the Power Supply detects and automatically shuts down. Maybe if any one of the voltages shows and overcurrent, the Power Supply cuts them all off for safety's sake.

Possible causes: Could be a cable put in wrong, or a motherboard mounting standoff touching a power bus etc. on the bottom of the motherboard as you mentioned above. Or a defective power supply. Or a defective filter cap on the motherboard, PSU or other assembly, that fails shorted instead of failing open (I ran into a few of those while doing power supplies for Carefusion back in the day).

Any other possibilities?

All I've got so far. Ah'll be bock. Might take the motherboard out of the case next and breadboard it as mentioned earlier. Probably not as easy as it sounds, things never are.
You have a possible short circuit somewhere. If you have already taken the motherboard out to bread box it and it still doesn't work, then the last possibilities are either the motherboard itself has a defect or you are using the wrong cable for CPU power or there is a problem with the PSU.

Check your wires again to make certain you are not plugging a 6+2 pin PCIE cable into the motherboard 8 pin socket. It should only be a 4+4 or solid 8 pin that says CPU and also recheck the GPU power cable to make sure it's 6+2 pin.

I would RMA the Motherboard and the PSU just to be certain one or the other isn't at fault if it's not an incorrect power cable plugged in the wrong socket.
 
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IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!!

Strung it out on a breadboard (actually a large, flattened antistatic bag, I'm old school), reconnected the needed cables, powered up the power supply, pressed the pushbutton (case was sitting within a short cable-length of the mboard), and it came on and stayed on! Hit F10, it booted into the BIOS screen. My son connected the external DVD drive and put the Windows 10 disk in, and it put up the Windows logo, started asking him for the serial number etc. etc.

It couldn't do all that if there were any majorly broken parts. I didn't see a sign that it recognized the 2TB M2 nVME SSD, but maybe we didn't ask it the right way or something. And we still have to put the graphics card back in, and get it back into the case and find out what's up with that. But....

IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!!

@Gerald6049 and @Third-Eye, thank you for your great help, both of you. Couldn't have done it without you.
 
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Gerald6049

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IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!!

Strung it out on a breadboard (actually a large, flattened antistatic bag, I'm old school), reconnected the needed cables, powered up the power supply, pressed the pushbutton (case was sitting within a short cable-length of the mboard), and it came on and stayed on! Hit F10, it booted into the BIOS screen. My son connected the external DVD drive and put the Windows 10 disk in, and it put up the Windows logo, started asking him for the serial number etc. etc.

It couldn't do all that if there were any majorly broken parts. I didn't see a sign that it recognized the 2TB M2 nVME SSD, but maybe we didn't ask it the right way or something. And we still have to put the graphics card back in, and get it back into the case and find out what's up with that. But....

IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!! IT'S ALIVE!!!

@Gerald6049 and @Third-Eye, thank you for your great help, both of you. Couldn't have done it without you.
Good for you. So are the systems is working fine now ? Since they are can boot into BIOS.

And by the way, what kind of M2 SSD do you have ? Make sure to refer the support list for the NVME compability.
https://www.asrock.com/MB/Intel/Z490 Extreme4/index.asp#Storage
 
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The 2TB SSD is a Western Digital Black SN750 NVMe. Hmm, I didn't see that on the compatibility list (which I didn't know existed). Does that mean it definitely won't work on this motherboard? Or that it MAYBE won't work?

Bought the SSD here:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07M9VXSXG/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER&psc=1

The Amazon ad title says it's a WDS200T3X0C. One with that number does exist on the Compatibility list. The List gives it a suffix of -00SJG0 , which the Amazon ad didn't mention. Wonder what difference, if any, it makes?

Maybe the BIOS screen just wants a gentle prod in the right direction, to know where to look?

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ON EDIT:
Unscrewed a little metal shield next to the M2 slot where we had installed the SSD, and found another M2 slot. Son recalled that his older brother, who had built up a gaming system a month ago or so, had removed such a shield before installing his SSD. So we moved our SSD component over to the newly-discovered slot, powered up, and it immediately tried to boot from an external device. That says to me that it suddenly found a new device in a bootable position. And the only change had been moving the SSD to its new home.

So we plugged the external DVD drive in to USB, put the Windows 10 DVD in it, power cycled, and sho 'nuff. It asked us if we'd like to load the OS into this nice big disk it just found. Said yes, did the rest of the paperwork, and now it's doing a very good imitation of loading an operating system into a disk. And we just backed off to let it play with itself for a few hours.



 
Last edited:
Jul 7, 2020
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It loaded Windows 10, asked for internet, we hooked up the cable, it circle-jerked with Microsoft or whoever for a while, asked us to sign over our first-born child, finally acted like a Windows machine.

Powered down, installed the Nvidia 2080 Super card. It came up, worked, and hijacked the Display port from the motherboard, leaving us staring at a blank screen. Move the Display cable over, and it looked great. This was also the first time it booted directly into Windows without a DVD in the drive. Looks like the SSD finally figured out what it was there for.

Powered down, moved the motherboard back into the case, minimal installation (2 screws), just in case it shorted again. It didn't, and display looked great. Powered down and put the rest of the mboard mounting screws in, powered up and it ran fine.

Son is now putting the power supply in the basement and routing cables. We just might be getting close.
 

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