Question PCIe slots suddenly stopped working

Feb 23, 2019
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I have a older HP desktop running a Pentium dual core e5200 which has two PCIe slots. It came with a wireless card attached to slot one, four years ago I added a USB 3 card in the other slot. Things worked well until last week when I added a external HD to one of the USB 3 slots (I use 5 USB devices through the card and have been for years, went down to 4 for a while). After installing the external HD the USB 3 card started to act getting I/O errors. I decided to upgrade my USB 3 card and removed it and was able to use my new external HD with no problems through the factory USB 2 slots that were available. Today I installed my new USB card and when I tried to install the drivers it said card not found... I pulled it out and tried to clean out the dust again as best I could and reinstalled it, and again the system was not recognizing my card. Nothing showed up in device manager.

I removed the card turned back on my computer and found that now my wireless card in the other PCIe slot is not working.

I have tried reinstalling the PCIe device controller to no effect.

in checking events I did get a event of device was not migrated but the events showed it loading on the next event.

I have had zero success getting any help on this it is a little frustrating as these problems are real sudden. I have had ZERO trouble with the hardware before this.
 

compprob237

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May 17, 2009
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Hm, do you have another computer you can test the USB 3 cards and wireless card in? If they do work in another computer then you have it isolated to the CPU+Motherboard+Case(I'll explain)+PSU.

Most diagnostics on computers usually boil down to: swap for a known good component or take suspicious component and install in a working computer (depends on the behavior though). So, most of my suggestions are going to basically be this.

I ordered these tests (top -> down) in order of easiest to most invasive to avoid the extra work.

For a bent computer case we're going to do a bit of a shot in the dark. I did have a customer who's case frame was tweaked just enough to make the expansion cards have issues. The easiest first attempt would be to remove the slot bracket from the USB card, install it in the slot, connect the hard drive, re-check the card is straight and seated, and then fire the system up. If it still has issues then it's likely not the cards especially if they work in another computer. You could also remove the motherboard and do this but that's more surgery than necessary for this test.

Next up is the PSU. Sometimes you have issues if there's a problem with the PSU, the cables, or the connection. Double-check the power cables are fully seated in the motherboard. If they are then try hooking up a known-good PSU. The PSU from that test system would be perfect for this so long as it can handle the load.

Before moving to the heart of the system I'd suggest attempting a reinstall of the operating system. This could solve the issue and at this point what could it hurt?

Motherboard+CPU are a bit more difficult to just "swap for a known-good" so the best thing I can suggest is that if you get to this point report back here before ruling one of these has failed. Well, unless you have, have access to, or are willing to buy (used on ebay?) another LGA775 CPU. If that's the case then you just install the known-good CPU in the current motherboard and see if the behavior persists. Clears up? Bad CPU. Persists? Bad motherboard.

I've had this happen before and it was a problem with the CPU. Thankfully it was within Intel's warranty time frame but your CPU is clearly beyond that (2 year) warranty. My issue was a single PCIe x4 slot just up and disappeared from the system. Swapping the CPU around between different systems saw this very same behavior obviously with the slots changing if the motherboard was different.

I've heard of this happening and it was a bad motherboard. Swapping in a known-good CPU had the behavior persist and upon inspection found a few issues with circuit components (I wont dive into details).

So, give these a try and let us know how things go.
 
Feb 23, 2019
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Thank you for the rapid response. Moments after posting my wireless card suddenly started working . It magically stopped working over night though which makes me want to scream or throw something.

I do not have another desktop to swap out cards with. One thing I have noticed is the USB 3 card seems to have zero power problems as it power light is on and GREEN.

I am a little worried the inside of my case was really dusty, i cleaned it out before installing the new card but am concerned the clean out process could have effected my motherboard.

I have tried twice to use a vacuum on the pci slots to make sure they are clean.

AT this point what really worries me is the interment aspect of the wireless card. it came installed and I have had zero problems until now. I also am disgusted with the new windows software involved with plug and play. It frustrates me as the device manager section lists zero errors and does not recognize there is something plugged in that is not working.

Going forward it makes no sense to try and fix a motherboard, cpu problem sense my system is so old over 7 years plus. Cheaper easier to just buy a new unit in the long run. I will still attempt to fix but I guess I better search and find my usb wireless card I haven't had out in over four years. It is impractical to hook up with Ethernet cable.

My next check is to remove the card that isn't working from my PCIe 2 slot and see if that allows my wireless in PCIe1 slot to magically start working again. It did seem to "stop" when I plugged in my new card though why I don't know as both slots have been in use for a long time. And I seem to remember the card was not installed when the wireless started working again but I did try and install it again and the wireless did not immediately stop so... Still further checking properties on my PCIe driver I found a slot for turning off the power with in activity that was checked so just encase I unchecked the box.

Trying to get a complete SFC scan done currently
 

compprob237

Distinguished
May 17, 2009
352
35
18,890
28
Thank you for the rapid response. Moments after posting my wireless card suddenly started working . It magically stopped working over night though which makes me want to scream or throw something.

I do not have another desktop to swap out cards with. One thing I have noticed is the USB 3 card seems to have zero power problems as it power light is on and GREEN.

I am a little worried the inside of my case was really dusty, i cleaned it out before installing the new card but am concerned the clean out process could have effected my motherboard.

I have tried twice to use a vacuum on the pci slots to make sure they are clean.

AT this point what really worries me is the interment aspect of the wireless card. it came installed and I have had zero problems until now. I also am disgusted with the new windows software involved with plug and play. It frustrates me as the device manager section lists zero errors and does not recognize there is something plugged in that is not working.

Going forward it makes no sense to try and fix a motherboard, cpu problem sense my system is so old over 7 years plus. Cheaper easier to just buy a new unit in the long run. I will still attempt to fix but I guess I better search and find my usb wireless card I haven't had out in over four years. It is impractical to hook up with Ethernet cable.

My next check is to remove the card that isn't working from my PCIe 2 slot and see if that allows my wireless in PCIe1 slot to magically start working again. It did seem to "stop" when I plugged in my new card though why I don't know as both slots have been in use for a long time. And I seem to remember the card was not installed when the wireless started working again but I did try and install it again and the wireless did not immediately stop so... Still further checking properties on my PCIe driver I found a slot for turning off the power with in activity that was checked so just encase I unchecked the box.

Trying to get a complete SFC scan done currently
You don't even have a friend/relative willing to let you try your components in their system?

The dust may be the source of the problem. Do you have any can of air or air jets you can use to blast into the PCIe slot? It may take a good bit of blowing power to work it out of the slot.
The first set of pins closest to the mounting bracket on the card is where it gets its power from the PCIe slot. If there's dust blocking the pins in the data section of the slot then the card will not be detected by the motherboard. It will still receive power but your motherboard will think there's nothing in that slot. It isn't Window's fault for that.
 

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