old desktop / pci problems

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware, Devices and Accessories' started by pokefloote, May 6, 2012.

May 6, 2012
  1. pokefloote
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    Member pokefloote GBAtemp Addict

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    Alright, I have this old Dell desktop PC that I'm trying to get ready as a general internet browsing machine, nothing fancy (not that it could play high end games anyway).

    It only has two USB 1 ports in the back, and two in the front. I need to install 2.0 ports so I bought a 2.0 hub for the pci slots it has.

    It won't even boot up when they are installed, but if I remove them it boots just fine. The fans turn on, but nothing happens on the screen and the keyboard just lights up for a second then turns off.

    I've exchanged the video cards, and swapped some pci stuff before, and those all worked. I even tried the new usb 2.0 hub in a different desktop and it worked fine.

    If it matters, it's a

    Dell Dimension 4400
    RAM: 1GB
    Processor: Intel Pentium 4 CPU 1.70GHz
    32bit windows 7 professional

    The PC handles windows 7 extremely well, and I can play old games like Oblivion and Halo 1 + 2, the only thing it really needs are these USB ports for file transfers between my USB HDD. -.-

    Is there anything I could try?
     
  2. Luigi2012SM64DS

    Banned Luigi2012SM64DS G-old member

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    are you sure the card is compatible? (am i saying it right?)
     
  3. pokefloote
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    Member pokefloote GBAtemp Addict

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    Well, it's just a standard pci usb hub... It works on a Dell desktop that is way older than this one but was built the same way.
     
  4. FAST6191

    Reporter FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip
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    Most modern PCI cards do not have anything resembling options and especially not for something as simple as a USB card so moving on before I start recalling ISA cards and rocking in the corner.

    That it does not even make it to POST is troubling (I assume it does have an internal speaker and will beep at you if it senses something wrong). That it is a Dell means you will probably have a locked down BIOS. Sometimes Dell released options to get into the big boy options mode after warranty was up or a BIOS update that basically allowed go nuts but by all means give it a go. There might be an option somewhere to default to PCI for graphics as opposed to AGP and even locked down ones should allow this (I know it is not graphics but give it a go). Absolute crazy mode-hardware BIOS reset if you can,

    Also if for some reason you do have an old modem or anything else of the PCI persuasion yank it. This one does not have onboard graphics by the looks of things so no need to head down that path.

    P.S. even that vintage might well have at least some USB 2.0 ports- I have seen said vendor machines drop down into 1.1/legacy mode for reasons unknown and naturally being locked down BIOS you can not get out of it (this is especially annoying on laptops) but sometimes you can.

    Edit- you appear to have an onboard diagnostics option which is not often seen.
    http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dim4400/codes.htm#1101572

    What do they say?
     
  5. pokefloote
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    Member pokefloote GBAtemp Addict

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    There is an option for that, I switched and nothing seems to have changed.

    I think it's safe to say these are 1.1 ports, based on what others have said about this machine.

    Wow, the lights don't even show up at all with the port installed. Otherwise, the lights are all green without the hub installed.

    I might just have to find a different desktop, or maybe try another usb hub somewhere along the line.
     
  6. Originality

    Member Originality Chibi-neko

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    I've got a feeling about this. What is your power supply rated at, and what brand (if any) has it got?
     
  7. pokefloote
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    Member pokefloote GBAtemp Addict

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    I have no idea. I'm at a loss when it comes to hardware. xD
    I'll just post some numbers that I see on it...

    Max output: 210W
    Peak Surge max output: 418W
    Doesn't look like it's branded.
    This is just what came stock with the PC, and I haven't changed much besides installing a (slightly) better graphics card (still very bad though)
    And I've tried installing the usb ports with and without the modifications
     
  8. FAST6191

    Reporter FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip
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    I had wondered that as well but I figured if games worked even the old AGP stuff had lower idle power.

    Unless of course we are going right down into it fun and games and the rails are actually split. I guess it is an easy enough test though.
     
  9. marcus134

    Member marcus134 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    have you tried a different slot in the dell?
     
  10. pokefloote
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    Member pokefloote GBAtemp Addict

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    Yep, tried all of them... I guess it's just incompatible hardware, or something is wrong with the usb hub itself.
     
  11. Sicklyboy

    Global Moderator Sicklyboy Resident Mechanical Keyboard Addict

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    Being a USB card, are you possibly not seeing a 4-pin Molex power connector you need to provide power to on the rear end of the card, inside the case?
     
  12. marcus134

    Member marcus134 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    either a bios problem, pci bus problem (defective mobo), or some random incompatibility that happened between your comp and that controller.
     

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