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I have a Gateway GT5220 I'm troubleshooting. It is, in fact, the machine I just gave my father for his birthday a couple months ago. (Prior to that, it was my home PC. My home PC is now the MacBook on which I'm writing this.)

Before going any further, I suspect that the answer will be, "It's worse than that, it's dead, Jim, it's dead, Jim, it's dead, Jim." At least, mobo and/or CPU.

The initial symptoms were as follows:

  • Turn on power
  • All fans fire up (thus making it so I can't hear if the hard drive is spinning or not, nor are my hands sensitive enough anymore to feel it)
  • No LEDs remained lit on the front panel. (Initially, the hard drive indicator flashed briefly.)
  • No beep, no video, no nothing.

Following some advice I found here, I tried to "drain the stored power." After following those steps, the new symptoms were:

  • Turn on power
  • All fans fire up
  • The front panel LEDs remained lit!
  • After about 20, maybe 30 seconds, we had video! Sort of. We got to the Gateway splash/POST screen, which appeared thoroughly corrupted. How corrupted? Well, I imagine it's what a POST screen would look like after reading the wrong passage out of the Necronomicon:

Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn.

It stayed there. I gave it at least 5, maybe 6 minutes, and it didn't move. So I shut her down, started her up again, and now (this is where we currently stand, symptomatically) we have this:

  • Turn on power
  • All fans fire up
  • The front panel LEDs remain lit
  • No video, no beep, no nothing.

I'm a software guy; haven't done real hardware troubleshooting in years. My gut tells me that the mobo and/or CPU is fried, and unfortunately my gut didn't get to be as big as it is being wrong all the time. :( In addition to the link above, I have read all of the following (trying to save you some LMGTFY trouble):

My questions:

  1. Are there any conditions other than mobo/CPU that could cause symptoms like these?
  2. Is it worth my time to try the next hardware troubleshooting step?
    (IE, remove all non-critical hardware from the machine, try to boot, systematically replace one by one until we find the failing component)
  3. Which mobos will fit in the Gateway GT5220 case (with rear ports correctly aligned)?
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I don't have a solution, but i do admire the problem (or rather the screen shot :) +1 – Molly7244 Dec 14 '09 at 3:40
Thank you. :) All I had with me when I was visiting him was my iPhone; this photo is (believe it or not) unretouched. :) – John Rudy Dec 14 '09 at 4:04

A shot in the dark, but have you tried dropping in a discrete video card and seeing what happens?

It could be fried, but it could also be that the video card (onboard) is shot. I've resurrected more than one integrated-video-card motherboard (especially AMD ones, for some reason) with a video card for $40 from Tiger or Newegg.

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Already has one, but thanks. :) (And I tried booting from both that and the onboard.) – John Rudy Dec 16 '09 at 22:53

Well your issue is either Blown Capacitors on the motherboard, video card or a bad power supply. Look the board over carefully to see any damage. Power supply failure can cause the exact issue that you are dealing with and they are very inexpensive to replace. If you want to test the power supply you will either require access to a psu tester or have good working knowledge of the uses of a multi meter. that or bring it to a local shop to have them check it out.

If it is blown capacitors on the motherboard a new pc is in order, if there are blown caps (or a locked fan) on the video card attempt replacement with a temporary card to see if the system regains its stability.

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Thank you. I've eliminated video as a cause, but not PSU, and certainly not mobo. I'll check on those ... – John Rudy Jan 4 '10 at 17:40

This is Nvidia's famous chip problem. New board or repair the motherboard. I have repaired many motherboards with this chip problem, from HP and Gateway and others.

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