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Old 01-26-2010, 02:48 PM   #1
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Default Did I fry my motherboard?

I believe I fried my board, but if anyone has suggestions for alternative possibilities I'd love to hear them.

Basically I've got these two USB ports on the front of my case toward the bottom that I use from time to time to plug in a camera or cell phone or whatever. The metal divider between the two fell off a couple days ago, and I had been using those ports sparingly here and there. A USB plug could slide in and be connected, but if it got bumped or anything I'd heard the usual connect/disconnect noise in Windows 7 indicating that it lost the USB link temporarily.

Anyway, yesterday I went to plug something into that and may have somehow touched the USB plug against more than one edge of the metal on those USB slots. I was restarting the computer at the time but when this happened it just abruptly shut down altogether. I tried to turn it back on but to no avail.

The CPU and case fans all turn on and the LED on the motherboard stays solid green. The DVD drive made this clicking noise like it wanted to spin but couldn't, so I removed the DVD and that stopped. Now that DVD drive's green light just stays on solid. The video card fan would not spin. No POST.

I didn't initially realize the vid card fan wasn't spinning so I got a new PSU and tossed it in, but to no avail. Then I realized the vid card fan wasn't on and thought that might have fried, but that's less than a year old as well. I took a video card from my 2nd machine and threw it in there - no luck (that vid card wouldn't power on either). So I took my vid card and put it in the 2nd machine and it works fine and boots right up.

So now I'm left with:

1) vid cards from PC1 and PC2 don't work in PC1
2) vid cards from PC1 and PC2 work fine on PC2

Did I fry the motherboard somehow? Is it possible to short out the board to the point that its power subsystem doesn't work anymore, and more specifically the PCI-E port?

I know PSU and RAM can cause problems getting the computer to POST, however neither should cause the video card to be seemingly dead. In those instances I would expect the video card and its fan to power on normally even though the computer still wouldn't POST due to the PSU or RAM.

Any ideas?

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Old 01-26-2010, 06:09 PM   #2
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Default Re: Did I fry my motherboard?

No, when you "fry" a motherboard the LED light doesn't even come on. Often on newer computers if something isn't inserted properly it just won't start instead of going "BEEP BEEP BEEP" like an old computer.

Try clearing all the static. Turn off the backswitch of your power source, unplug it, leave it alone for a little bit. Probably around 5 minutes, then try again.

Oddly enough, a lot of computers develop problems in no relations to the thing you messed up.

IE: Jammed a USB port, now your power source doesn't provide enough power to spin all the fans, etc.

I also learned that if a screw falls on a mother board, is loose or too tight the computer won't turn on. Make sure your board doesn't fall under any of this, too. I had my screw too tight to where the USB connectors are on the motherboard and every time I turned it on, it would say "USB FAILED, COMPUTER TURNING OFF TO PREVENT FURTHER DAMAGE." Released the screw a little and bam.

I hope I can help you in the future. Please feel free to contact me at anytime for IT-related questions.
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Old 01-26-2010, 08:36 PM   #3
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Default Re: Did I fry my motherboard?

Did you clear the CMOS? Pull out the battery on the MB and leave it out for 2 minutes or so. Pop it back in and see if you can boot up.
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