OT: dead box

Lowell Gilbert freebsd-questions-local at be-well.ilk.org
Sun Mar 21 13:08:53 UTC 2010

Frank Shute <frank at shute.org.uk> writes:

> When I hit the power button I get nothing. None of the fans spin up
> and there's no sign of life.

Well, that's not a *good* sign... ;-)

> I'm beginning to think that I might be in for a new motherboard anyway :(

I think you can safely conclude it isn't an OS problem, at any rate.

Don't try a new motherboard yet, though.  

If the system is critical and you're really desperate to get it back up
ASAP, I'd go with a whole brand-new system.  That's to protect against
the possibility that the motherboard isn't the source of the problem,
in which case you could waste time fixing the wrong thing, and possibly
even damage a new motherboard before you recognize the real problem.

If you can afford a little more time to isolate the trouble, try
disconnecting the power to the motherboard to make sure the power supply
starts up (I think someone else suggested this earlier, albeit for a
slightly more likely set of symptoms).  If not, and if you have a
multimeter, make sure that there's voltage across the switch, and that
there isn't when the switch closes.

> Why do these things strike when you least need them? Damn Murphy and
> his stinking law!

Murphy never said anything about *when* things go wrong...

Sorry if I've gone overboard in following your jocular tone.  I realize
that you might be feeling desperate by now, particularly if the machine
really is critical.

Lowell Gilbert, embedded/networking software engineer, Boston area

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