My computer's power on button's no longer working so my friend rewired it to use the restart button as a power on button. I don't know what happened but suddenly when I try to turn the computer on, it will work or make a sound that it was powered on for a second and then suddenly shuts down. Then I did some troubleshooting and find out that the only way to turn it on is to plug or attach the wire inside that connects the start button to the pin and then remove it just after it powers on or else it will just suddenly shut down.

I'm sorry if this is confusing but I think it's a little bit understandable and I'm not really good with computer language. Please help me. I'm tired of attaching that blue and white wire to the pins (I think that's the word) every time I have to use my computer. TIA.

  • If what you describe is accurate, you either need a new case or a new motherboard, this is in no way normal. Also per common parlance, the CPU is a tiny chip inside the case, so I recommend the word "box" or "system", or even just "PC" when referring to the PC case. – Frank Thomas Mar 17 '15 at 20:26
  • My vote is the motherboard or power supply. The only reason the case itself would need replacing is if the button itself is broken, which I find unlikely. If the motherboard's power latch (whatever circuitry shorts the two relevant wires to the PS) is broken, you'll need a new MB; otherwise I'd say it's the power supply. – Russell Uhl Mar 17 '15 at 20:31
  • 1
    You need to start replacing parts. – Ramhound Mar 17 '15 at 20:48

Older computers used to use a latching switch (similar to the typical light switch) for power and a momentary switch for the reset button. The latching switch was part of the power loop and broke the power connection (at least, this is close enough to the truth to not matter here).

New computers use momentary switches for both power and reset (which is why your friend could swap the switches and have them function the same). Momentary switches close a "signal loop" (not a technical term) that suggests to the motherboard that you want to shut it off. The motherboard detects the signal and then handles that by communicating with the OS. Pressing and holding for 4 seconds will force a shutdown without sending a terminate signal to the OS.

If you are experiencing the long-press behavior, your button may be sticking. You can try cleaning the switch to ensure there is no gunk preventing the button from springing back after you press it. If you need to replace it, google "ATX Power Switch Case 2-Wire"

Note that any momentary switch will work and if you have a soldering iron, you can get one from Radio Shack (etc.) and attach the old power switch leads with jumper to the new switch.

I have an old case with the older style power switch, but I have been using the reset button as the power-on button for newer motherboards for many years.

In fact for these newer two lead ATX, ANY switch will work: light switch, doorbell etc. You could hook up a light switch to the leads from the jumper and then flip it on/off rapidly or on/wait 4 seconds/off to force shutdown.



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