What causes a laptop to turn on but not boot to anything (bios or operating system)?

simplytechnical

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My coworker has a Gateway NV59 Laptop that he dropped last week. When we try turning it on the lights in the front and volume light in the back indicate its on. The radiator fan spins for a few seconds then stops while the lights stay on. There is nothing on the screen indicating that the bios or the operating system is even attempting to boot. The hard drive doesn't spin either. Simply after the radiator spins for a few seconds it is as quiet as a rock with lights on. I've tried plugging a monitor into the vga port but it sends no signal. I'm tempted to replace the motherboard with a new one that I saw online for $149 on ebay, but could it be something other than the motherboard? Is it possible I will be wasting the companies money on getting a new motherboard?
 

dalethepcman

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Possible causes of no post at this stage are damaged Motherboard, RAM, CPU, Power Connector. The fall could have cracked the silicon die of any chip in the system.

By process of Elimination, you should be able to count out the RAM really easy, just pop that ram into another laptop and see if it boots. The other parts are a little more tricky and costly, and even after you get the system to post, you still might have a damaged HDD, cracked LCD inverter etc.. etc.. etc...

My $0.02
 

dalethepcman

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If you can take the laptop apart, check that the RAM and all add-in cards are connected properly (remove and re-seat) then remove the battery and try to power on the system.

If that fails remove all hardware not essential to post (everything except CPU, heat-sink, ram) and try again.

If you are unable to get video to register via the internal screen or external screen, then I wouldn't bother purchasing replacement parts. The cost of replacement laptops vs cost of parts + labor is about the same.

I recommend getting accidental damage protection on the next one. :)
 

chriss000

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Feebay is a useful place for buying old cheap parts, but not laptop motherboards. You could spend money, time and effort only to have an argument with the vendor over who's fault it is if it doesnt work. I would replace the laptop with a 200 dollar desktop. They dont get damaged very easily. ;#{
 

simplytechnical

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I took the laptop completely apart leaving the suggested items attached and even went as far to try it without the memory or the monitor leaving only the vga peripheral I had attached. I'm still not getting anything at all on the monitor. Its a nice i5 system that I hate to see go. If the new board for $149 would do the trick, I wouldn't hesitate getting it and putting it in myself. I just wanted to know if anything other than the board could be causing this issue to occur (i.e. the processor). I never had a motherboard act like this before so I'm pretty wary about the hole situation.
 

dalethepcman

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Jul 1, 2010
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Possible causes of no post at this stage are damaged Motherboard, RAM, CPU, Power Connector. The fall could have cracked the silicon die of any chip in the system.

By process of Elimination, you should be able to count out the RAM really easy, just pop that ram into another laptop and see if it boots. The other parts are a little more tricky and costly, and even after you get the system to post, you still might have a damaged HDD, cracked LCD inverter etc.. etc.. etc...

My $0.02
 
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