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PC won't POST

Invoker
Level 7
Hi,
Yesterday my computer has started freezing randomly. Naturally I went into BIOS and restored everything to default. The RAM memory had been "overclocked" to 3200 MHz (that's actually the advertised frequency, but it requires XMG profile). Anyway, the freezes persisted.

I tried updating my drivers via Safe Mode but apparently they were all up to date.

After some more googling, I decided to try to reset the CMOS. The MoBo has a button for this, so I didn't have to unplug a battery or anything. This is where things went really bad. While I was pressing that button, the computer restarted randomly and I panicked and turned off my PSU. When I turned it back on, and tried to turn on my computer, it wouldn't POST. The standard beep sound the MoBo makes ~10 seconds after I press the power button was not there either. The monitor was displaying the 'No Input' message. Thinking I corrupted the BIOS somehow, I did a BIOS Flashback, with everything but the PSU disconnected from the MB: I downloaded the latest BIOS file, renamed it to M8H, copied it to a flash drive (in FAT32 format), plugged it in the required USB port, pressed the button. When the blue lights went out, and (presumably) the BIOS flashback has been completed successfully, I connected the CPU and the two RAM modules. No results. PC still doesn't POST. Could it be the case that both my memory modules broke at the same time all of a sudden?

The red Q-codes displayed on the small screen on the motherboard usually are: 9 (for a couple of seconds), 13 (for a couple of seconds), CC (for around a minute), and then 55 (stuck here forever).

Obviously I tried all memory slots, with both modules as well as a single module. Nothing worked.

Specs:
Motherboard: Asus Maximus Hero VIII
CPU: i7-6700k
RAM: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 GB DDR4 3200 MHz
GPU: Asus 1080GTX STRIX A8G
PSU: BeQuiet 1000 W Dark Pro 11

If I try to turn on the PC with no RAM at all it beeps like crazy.

Can any of you guys please advise? Is there anything else I can try before I go to a PC service? I'm kind of reluctant to go to a repait shop since they'll probably charge me crazy amounts thinking I can afford it, if I have this PC.

Thank you.
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11 REPLIES 11

Shenny
Level 11
It's just a wild guess but could this be a problem with your CPU?

"55" is a code for "Memory Not Installed" according to my manual (for Maximus VIII Ranger but I suppose that the codes are all the same for the whole generation of mobos). However, if I am not wrong, the memory controller is integrated into the CPU so if it is malfunctioning, perhaps it may lead to the same error code.

This is also partially confirmed by the fact that your PC was freezing even with the default BIOS settings; PC freezes generally remind me of issues with overclocking. Have you overclocked too much before the problems started?

Last year I had a very bad experience when both my PSU and CPU went dead. After the PSU was replaced, my old mobo still refused to start with beeps like it was a memory problem but ultimately it turned out that the CPU was no longer in the game.

So if you have the chance to test with a spare memory kit or CPU to eliminate the most likely causes, do it.

NemesisChild
Level 12
The PC should not try to restart when clearing the CMOS. Are you sure you pressed CMOS button and not the Start button?

55 code is a memory issue, like Shenny said, it could be CPU IMC or memory related.
You may in fact have corrupted the bios. For now, have you tried posting with everything disconnected from the PC?
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MeanMachine
Level 13
You may have a failing RAM module with Qcode55 so need to check all modules. Try switching modules around and into different RAM slots.
As you have cleared CMOS try using the MemOK button on the MB.
You should run a Memtest86 check on all modules to be sure.
If all this fails then it could be bent pins in the MB socket or a failing IMC in the CPU.
We owe our existence to the scum of the earth, Cyanobacteria

My System Specs:

MB:ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Hero/WiFi GPU:EVGA GTX 1080 sc PSU:Corsair AX-1200i
CPU:
AMD R7 2700X Cooler: Corsair Hydro H115i Case: Corsair Carbide 780t

Memory:G.Skill TridentZ F4-3200C14D-16GTZR SSD:Samsung 500GB 960 EVO M.2


[/HR]

Hi, thank you all for the responses. I've now taken my computer to a repair store.

@Shenny: Sorry for your experience last year. I'm really hoping my CPU is not a goner... I'll know soon enough I guess. My assumption was that the freezes were caused by one of the RAM modules not being fully plugged, or something like that.

I don't have any spare RAM modules and my flatmates are all using laptops. No CPU to test either.. perhaps taking my computer to a repair store wasn't that bad after all.

I did overclock the CPU slightly in the past, but not too ambitiously. I also didn't do it manually, I used the EZ Tuner. And it's been restored to the base frequency for a few months now anyway.

@NemesisChild: I'm sure I pressed the reset button. The smallest and righmost one. You are right, it should not have caused restarts, I don't know what happened.

If I have indeed corrupted the BIOS, shouln't the flashback with everything but the PSU disconnected from the MoBo have fixed it?

@MeanMachine: I did try all slots with both modules.. all the combinations before I've given up. The MemOK button only caused endless resets but the PC still wouldn't POST.

Anyway, I'll update here when I hear back, if anyone cares.

Invoker wrote:
@NemesisChild: I'm sure I pressed the reset button. The smallest and righmost one. You are right, it should not have caused restarts, I don't know what happened.


I do not know if he and you are right, but my PC starts right after i release the CMOS button (the only case it would not start if i turn it off, unplug the power cord, clear CMOS, plug the power cord and press the CMOS button again). Someone please try to turn off the PC and clear CMOS by pressing the red button. I assume your PC would behave just like mine.

Regarding the BIOS: our MoBo(s) has a removable BIOS chip (W25Q128FV), so IMO its not bad idea to buy an SPI-Programmer. If you got one, you can do with your BIOS whatever you want: make backups, flash older/newer/beta versions, upgrade/downgrade Intel ME, update OROM modules etc. If you screw something up, there is no reason to worry about it. Just my advice (CH341A would be enough from aliexpress for about 5€)

Anyway, I'll update here when I hear back, if anyone cares.


Yes, i am interested.
Intel Core i7 6700K, ASUS Maximus VIII Hero, ASUS GTX 980 Strix, Kingston 2x8GB HX426C15FBK2/16, Corsair MP510 960GB, Toshiba X300 4TB, XFX Pro 750W, Windows 10 Pro

Alright, so I've got my diagnosis from the repair store - my CPU is apparently a goner, and all the other components (and BIOS) are just fine. They tested each component independently using their own setup. They also told me that my PSU sparks when the power cable is plugged into it - I've never had that happen to me so I don't know about that one, but then again, I always have the PSU turned off when I plug the power cable, and then I turn it on.

Anyway, it looks like I'll have to buy a new CPU. Since I bought the OEM version, Intel doesn't offer a manufacturer's warranty. And I can't seem to find any mention whatsoever of a warranty anywhere in my e-mails (I bought the processor from amazon like the moron I am).

Thank you all again for the help and replies.

@KotTHECat: Thank you for the suggestion. Is a SPI-Programmer difficult to work with? Like do you have to know some obscure programming language to do stuff with it? Like you said, it seems like a nice thing to have if you want complete control over your BIOS. As for the CMOS button, I don't know what the normal behaviour is supposed to be, but in any case, I'm pretty sure the flashback worked since the guys at the repair store were able to POST using their CPU and my MoBo + RAM.

Invoker wrote:
@KotTHECat: Thank you for the suggestion. Is a SPI-Programmer difficult to work with? Like do you have to know some obscure programming language to do stuff with it?


No-no, thats really ez! You just need to have basic/advanced (Windows) knowledge about installing drivers and programs. But if you want to modify your BIOS, there is something more, of course 🙂
Anyway, if you decide to buy a programmer, i also would suggest you to buy a second BIOS (or SPI) chip. Its cheap as well. The name of it i mentioned above.
In this case you do not need two computers; you can flash and modify your BIOS while running system on the original one and vise versa.
Hope you could understand me as my english is poor...

Btw., https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0ChYNwunUE
Intel Core i7 6700K, ASUS Maximus VIII Hero, ASUS GTX 980 Strix, Kingston 2x8GB HX426C15FBK2/16, Corsair MP510 960GB, Toshiba X300 4TB, XFX Pro 750W, Windows 10 Pro

Invoker wrote:
Alright, so I've got my diagnosis from the repair store - my CPU is apparently a goner, and all the other components (and BIOS) are just fine. They tested each component independently using their own setup. They also told me that my PSU sparks when the power cable is plugged into it - I've never had that happen to me so I don't know about that one, but then again, I always have the PSU turned off when I plug the power cable, and then I turn it on.

Anyway, it looks like I'll have to buy a new CPU. Since I bought the OEM version, Intel doesn't offer a manufacturer's warranty. And I can't seem to find any mention whatsoever of a warranty anywhere in my e-mails (I bought the processor from amazon like the moron I am).

Thank you all again for the help and replies.

@KotTHECat: Thank you for the suggestion. Is a SPI-Programmer difficult to work with? Like do you have to know some obscure programming language to do stuff with it? Like you said, it seems like a nice thing to have if you want complete control over your BIOS. As for the CMOS button, I don't know what the normal behaviour is supposed to be, but in any case, I'm pretty sure the flashback worked since the guys at the repair store were able to POST using their CPU and my MoBo + RAM.


You should try your CPU on another motherboard if possible. I'll bet that your CPU is okay. You mentioned some issues with your PSU. Try another PSU and you wil find out the problem is your PSU and not your CPU. I've been building computers for 15+ years and no CPU ever failed. Chances your CPU is dead is 1 to a million. When we talk about the CPU socket it's a whole new game. Bent pins are very common for people who don't have the knowledge.

emsir wrote:
You should try your CPU on another motherboard if possible. I'll bet that your CPU is okay. You mentioned some issues with your PSU. Try another PSU and you wil find out the problem is your PSU and not your CPU. I've been building computers for 15+ years and no CPU ever failed. Chances your CPU is dead is 1 to a million. When we talk about the CPU socket it's a whole new game. Bent pins are very common for people who don't have the knowledge.


I would challenge the claim that the chance to end with a dead CPU is "1 to a million". It is a rare case but not that much. As I mentioned in a previous post, this is exactly what happened to me last year. In my case, the PSU died and when replaced with a respectable Corsair RM 850x. they found that the only way to make my old system post again was by replacing the CPU.

However, I agree that there is a notable difference compared to Invoker's case like the fact that my old PSU was a goner and it had probably hit the CPU (but not the mobo or any other component!) when dying. Also, most of the components were already more than 5 years old although this is not necessarily a reason for them to start failing.