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First of all, please don't close this question as a duplicate. While it sounds similar to an old question on here, my situation is a bit different.

My Dell Inspiron 530 Desktop has stopped booting. A few weeks ago I replaced my nVidia GeForce 8300GS video card with a GeForce 9600GT. It was such a massive upgrade that I had to get a new, 430W PSU to support it. Up until a few days ago, the system worked great with the new hardware.

But the other day, when I turned it on, the loud fan you can normally hear on boot lasted longer than normal, after which it turned off. A few seconds later it repeated that cycle. A few seconds after that the tower LOOKED like it booted normally, but the monitor is displaying nothing.

I have double checked the connections at the back of the tower. I have opened my case and made sure the video card, RAM, and internal power cables are properly set. I have given the machine a thorough dusting with a can of compressed air. But nothing has changed.

Is it likely my PSU is defective? My new video card? Or does this sound like a heat problem, where I should get a new case fan? My system is not overclocked, BTW. I'm a novice when it comes to hardware, so I'm not sure where to go from here.

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Try putting in the old video card with the new PSU. If it still doesnt boot, you have a PSU problem. –  Simon Sheehan May 12 '12 at 14:00
    
I'm the one who posted the original question to do with the dell 530 you mention, and yes, this is a new issue, unless our real issue is with the PCIe controller rather than the video card .I am currently using onboard video device that dell has so thoughtfully covered up with a little plastic cap, so whether this is some issue with the pci-e port, i don't know. I wouldn't recommend using the old video card, since the 3 spin up then boot cycle is a known issue with it. –  Journeyman Geek May 26 '12 at 1:19

1 Answer 1

Return the computer to the last working state it was in. That means the Old PSU, and the Old Video card. For all you know, you could have blown capacitors on your motherboard (they look like little upright beer cans on the board, and blown ones would have puffed tops... most of the time).

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At any rate, make sure the system still works the way that you had it originally.

Then, as was suggested in the comments, swap out your power supply. If the system works with the new PSU, then you know this is not the issue.

At that point you can bring the new video card into play, provided you have determined that the motherboard AND the PSU are not the problem.

However, if you return the computer to it's original working state (old PSU, old Video card) and it still doesn't boot properly, then it would be time to start checking other things.... just like you did (connections, Ram, etc.) It could be any of them (even though you checked). It could even be the heat sink on the processor, or the way the processor is sitting in the socket... but I doubt it. At least, I doubt it enough NOT to make it the first thing you should check.

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