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Frequently Asked Questions for Tech Support

Frequently Asked Questions for Tech Support


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Having a burning question? Chances are someone might have asked the same question before. Here is a collection of frequently asked questions to our tech support through e-mail and phone calls. Of course, if you don't see your question answered here, contact technical support.
  1. My power supply is dead.
  2. My bare-bone system doesn't seem to boot.
  3. My ATX case will not shut off using the power button.
  4. My translucent case won't post or boot
  5. My new hard drive is not being properly auto-detected
  6. During boot up, my system continuously beeps.
  7. The activity light on my floppy drive stays on
  8. My Pentium III 600B is being detected as a Pentium III 450
  9. My PCChips motherboard will not boot
  10. How do I reset the LED on my case to 350?
  11. The Power Button on my ATX case does not turn off my computer.
  12. How to make a bootable floppy to Format my new hard drive?
  13. With a K6-2/400, I got "Windows Protection" errors in Windows 95.
  14. I can't get my new AT computer I assembled to power up.
  15. Windows does not detect a new modem I installed.
  16. The 13GB hard drive I ordered turns out to be a 8GB.
  17. The 32MB memory I ordered turns out to be a 8MB.
  18. The new system I received does not boot at all.
    The power supply in my new ATX case does not seem to work. After I plugged the power supply and turned on the switch, the fan did not turn. I did not detect any voltage coming out of the power supply, either. Is this a defected power supply?

    ATX power supplies require a working motherboard with a working CPU, memory, and video card to function properly. ATX power supplies are turned on only through motherboards. In other words, it needs to be connected to a working computer before the fan inside the power supply starting to run and the voltage from the connectors can be measured. That's how ATX is designed.

    If the power supply is connected to a motherboard, make sure that the processor, memory and video card are properly inserted. Then check the voltage selection switch on the back of the power supply. Make sure it is set at 115V for the Northern America market.

    If the system still does not power up, see if the new power supply in question would work in another working computer or see if another working power supply would power up the new system you are building.

    If the power supply is confirmed defective, file an online RMA request and ship back only the power supply but not the entire case for exchange.

    After installing the hardware, my bare-bone system does not seem to boot

    The PCChips bare-bone system utilizes shared memory for the onboard VGA video adapter. According to your manual, make sure you have the RAM module seated properly in Bank 1. Also, the motherboard for the system is shipped with the CMOS Jumper set to CLEAR from the manufacturer. Make sure you set the CMOS Jumper to NORMAL for proper operation.

    My ATX case will not shut off using the power button

    The ATX case and power supply receive a signal from the motherboard to shut down and are not directly connected to the power button (unlike the older AT styled cases). The motherboard "waits" for a signal from the operating system to insure proper shut down. If it is necessary to shut down the system with the power button, just press and hold it for approximately 5-10 seconds.

    My translucent case won't post or boot

    Check to insure that the voltage selector on the power supply is set to 115V. Occasionally but rarely, the manufacturers leave the power selector to 220V instead.

    My new Western Digital drive is not being properly auto-detected

    Check the jumper setting on the back of the hard drive. Western Digital ships the drive with the Jumper set to SINGLE DRIVE as default. There is no need to change the setting to MASTER. Even in a MASTER-SLAVE environment, the drive will automatically set itself to MASTER with this setting left to default. The drive should properly auto-detect.

    During boot up, my system continuously beeps

    The system board has two distinctive beep codes. A continuous, non-stop beep with intervals indicates a memory (RAM) problem. A one-time beep with 3 quick beeps indicates a video problem. Check these components accordingly.

    After installing my new floppy drive, the activity light stays on continuously

    Check to insure the floppy cable is connected properly. The end with a twisted cable must be connected to DRIVE A instead of the motherboard. The RED STRIP on the cable must face towards Pin 1 of the floppy drive connector, which is often close to the power connector. In some situations, the cable may be keyed, allowing it to connect only one way. However, a keyed cable may not guarantee a proper connection. You may have to manipulate the floppy connector to allow proper connection of the keyed cable.

    My Pentium III 600B is being detected as a Pentium III 450

    Pentium III processors are multiplier locked. For example, the Pentium III 600B is locked at 4.5x with the 133MHz BUS. If your motherboard does not support the 133MHz BUS then it will run at 100MHz causing the processor to run at 450MHz. Some motherboards state that the BUS will run at 133MHz, but this is not supported by the manufacturer and may interfere with the AGP and PCI BUS speeds causing problems. Unless your motherboard supports the 133MHz BUS and processors from the manufacturer, your supported speed will only be 100MHz.

    My PCChips motherboard will not boot

    The PCChips motherboard utilizes shared memory for the onboard VGA video adapter. . According to your manual, make sure you have the RAM module seated properly in Bank 1. Also, the motherboard for the system is shipped with the CMOS Jumper set to CLEAR from the manufacturer. Make sure you set the CMOS Jumper to NORMAL for proper operation.

    The LED on my new case is stuck on 178. How do I reset it to match 350MHz of my processor?

    To set the LED to the proper MHz speed reading, simply hold in the reset button on the face plate of the case until it reads ?50? In some cases you will have to set the jumpers on the back of the LED to read, "350." The LED is really for decoration purpose only. We do not like using them. Newer cases tend not have them any more.

    When I try to use the Power Button on my ATX case to turn off my computer it will not turn off.

    ATX and AT form factor have a few big differences, One is the physical design of the motherboard and the other is the power handling of the two different factors. AT uses "hard" power and 115 volts running through the motherboard at all times. The ATX uses "soft" power and only has 15 volts of continuous power running through the motherboard. In Order to get the power to shut off your ATX computer you must hold in the power button for 3 to 5 seconds. To get around this, you can go into the system BIOS and change the Power-Button feature to Instant Off rather than 4 seconds.

    Please tell me how to make a bootable floppy with the correct files to Fdisk and Format this new hard drive?

    In order to create a bootable floppy you must first format a floppy diskette with system files. Then copy the following files to the diskette. Fdisk.exe, Format.com, Mscdex.exe, and Himem.sys. After you have copied these files to the diskette label it, “Bootable floppy diskette? You have now all the files needed to prep a hard drive for installation of an operating system.

    I recently purchased a new motherboard, memory and K6-2/400 from Directron.com. When I tried to boot up into Windows95 I got, "Windows Protection" errors. Is there something wrong with the new parts I have purchased?

    A patch is needed to run Windows 95 with an AMD K6-2/350 and above. The patch can be found at http://www.microsoft.com or http://www.amd.com. The patch should take care of the problem.

    I Just received my new AT motherboard and AT case. After I installed the new motherboard and the rest of my parts in my case, I was not able to get the computer to power up. What could cause this?

    If the system is not posting, check to be sure the video card is properly seated and well in the PCI or AGP expansion slot. Also check to make sure that the motherboard is not grounding out on a motherboard mount or the case chassis. Makes sure that the AT Power connecter are plugged into where the black cables are in the middle on the AT power connector.

    When I try to install a new modem in Windows, it does not detect the modem.

    Most modems will install to COM1-4, depending on the modem. If you have a modem that requires COM1 or COM2, you must disable that COM port then try to detect the modem.

    The 13GB hard drive I ordered turns out to be a 8GB.

    Check out the model number on the hard drive. If it is consistent with what was ordered and corresponding model number on manufacturer's web site, you most likely have received the right hard drive. It's very rare that we ship a wrong sized hard drive. If we did, you can return it for an exchange or refund.

    This problem often occurs because of older operating systems and motherboard BIOS. Some operating systems and BIOS are limited to certain sizes of hard drives. For instance, DOS can only recognize up to 2GB. The BIOS limitation depends on the brand, model, and BIOS version of the motherboard. Check the motherboard manual and/or manufacturer's web site to see if it is possible to download the latest BIOS upgrade.

    The 32MB memory I received turns out to be 8MB.

    This is often caused by compatibility issues between your computer motherboard and the new memory module. Some older computers allow only certain maximum memory capacity. Adding another 32MB memory may have exceeded that limit. Some proprietary computers may not take standard memory at all.

    We suggest you do a few tests. First determine how much memory your computer reads before inserting the new module. Then, remove all the memory modules and insert only the new one to see how much memory the computer registers. You may change the slot the new memory is inserted to see if it makes any difference.

    The new system I received does not boot at all.

    70% of all problems with a system are due to cables and connections. Cable connections inside a system could often become loose during transportation. Please open the system cover, and do a visual checking to ensure all cables are properly connected. Pay special attention to IDE cables, floppy cables, power cables, and all the other cables that are connected to the motherboard.


More Questions/Problems?

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