Is my CPU dead?
April 16, 2005 4:38 PM   Subscribe

While in the middle of doing my taxes the other day, my monitor went to displaying a weird character over and over over the entire screen. The computer wouldn't respond at all, so I shut it off manually via the power switch on the back. Since then, whenever I've attempted to start it up, the fans come on, the hard drive clicks a couple times, as usual, and then nothing. The fans keep whirring but there's no beep, no usual startup process, and nothing ever gets displayed to the monitor.

Now, I'm actually quite sure the video card is dead. The damned cooling fan fell off it. What I'm wondering is CPU dead as well and is the motherboard okay? I would think the computer would at least try to boot up, even without a working video card. I feel kinda silly asking because I used to know my way around this kind of stuff but have become rusty over the past few years. I just want to know the CPU is actually kaput before buying another one or if there's perhaps something I've missed. I realise this might be kinda vague, so if any more details are required, let me know.

The CPU is (was?) an AMD Athlon XP 2700+. The motherboard is a Chaintech Apogee 7VJL Deluxe. The video card was a nVIDIA GeForce 4 Ti 4400.
posted by DyRE to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)
Try pulling out the video card and seeing if you get a beep when powering on.

The video card may have fried itself, but that probably didn't damage any other hardware. However, a bad device can prevent anything else from working.
posted by nmiell at 4:45 PM on April 16, 2005

Best answer: Most computers expect a functioning video card to boot. I'd try replacing that first. If your CPU cooling didn't fail, it's probably OK. CPUs are remarkably durable when kept cool enough.
posted by zsazsa at 5:04 PM on April 16, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks, nmiell and zsazsa! Turns out it was just the dead video card "stalling" the boot up process. Now I'm off to get a new one (as this old 3dfx Voodoo Banshee I had lying around probably isn't a wise choice for continuing usage, heheh).
posted by DyRE at 5:28 PM on April 16, 2005

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