I got an old Dell T3400 from an closing office a few days ago without a HDD. So I grabbed a 160GB hard disk from my old Laptop and installed Windows 10 on it. It works very well without any issues. But it only boots into Windows if I open and close the BIOS one time at boot. If I just power it on, nothing happens after POST message, so I have to power it off, turn it back on, press F2 to get into the BIOS, press Escape and Exit the BIOS to get into Windows.

I'm running BIOS version A14 (newest version, but it didn't work with the original A08 aswell). I already tried resetting the BIOS and re-inserting the CMOS battery.

  • Have you tried replacing the CMOS battery? It should NOT be a problem to have a dead CMOS battery if the computer is plugged in but computers are finicky sometimes. – Damon Mar 21 '18 at 7:27
  • @Damon tried that, didn't change anything. Any other ideas? – Joni4Games May 7 '18 at 21:28
  • Without a drive, will it fully post and try to boot or do you have the same issue? if it fully post's and tries to boot it should give an error saying it cannot find a proper boot drive, or systems disk or something. – Damon May 7 '18 at 23:08
  • Essentially, start eliminating components down to PS, Mem, CPU, with minimum components to output video to see if you can get it to exibit a "normal" boot pattern. NO USB, Keyboard, Mouse, Extra drives, PCIe cards, etc. Then add components back in one-by-one booting multiple times between each addition to see what component causes a change. – Damon May 7 '18 at 23:10

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