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Dimension E521 no starting, solid amber light, no diagnostic lights

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Hi, apologies if this exact query has been answered before, but just wanted to check.  I have an E521 which doesn't  start up running on Vista.  An amber light at the front of the pc remains solid (no blinking) and there are no diagnostic lights that come up.  The fan seems to be working and the hard drive vibrates a little.  Does that mean i need to change the power supply or should i try some alternative diagnostics first before buying a power supply?  Thanks

Verified Answer
  • thelocogringo

    The Athlon 64 X2 6000+ will work just fine in your E521.  Just be sure to purchase a 89W version of the processor. 

    ADA6000IAA6CZ (ADA6000CZBOX) 6000+, 89W, 3.0Ghz, 2x1MB Cache, Windsor        

    Prior to installing the processor, check that you have the latest BIOS version 1.1.11 installed, with BIOS version 1.1.4 support for AMD was added.

    The following is a list of more Dimension e521 compatible processors:

    AMD Sempron 3400+, 1.8G, 256K, 62 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64 3200+, 2.0G, 512K, 62 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64 3500+, 2.2G, 512K, 62 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64 3800+, 2.5G, 512K, 62 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 3800+, 2.0G, 512KB x2, Dual Core, 65 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 3600+, 1.9G, 1MBX2, Dual Core, 65Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 3800+, 2.0G, 512K, 89 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4000+, 2.1G, 1MX2, Dual Core, 65Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4200+, 2.2G, 512KB x2, Dual Core, 65 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4200+, 2.2G, 512K, 89 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4400+, 2.3G, 1MX2, Dual Core, 65Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4600+, 2.4G, 512K, 89 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4600+, 2.4G, 512KB x2, Dual Core, 65 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 4800+, 2.5G, 1MX2, Dual Core, 65Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 5000+, 2.6G, 512K, 89 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 5200+, 2.6G, 1MBx2, Dual Core, 89 Watt

    AMD Athlon 64X2 5600+, 2.8G, 1MX2, Dual Core, 89 Watt

    Note: The Windsors were replaced by the Brisbanes and for the most part they do not work in E521.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

All Replies
  •  makay123

    The following is Dell's solution for a solid amber power light:

    Remove and then reinstall the memory modules.

    Remove and then reinstall any cards.

    Remove and then reinstall the graphics card, if applicable.

    Ensure that all power cables are securely connected to the system board

    The e521 Diagnostic Codes and Troubleshooter is  HERE.

    If the above does not make a difference and if you are comfortable working around computers, you could try the following:

    Note: The only 100% method of testing a PSU, is to install a know working power supply.

    Unplug the cord from the power supply, hold the power button in for about 15/20 seconds, open the case, unplug the 24-pin power connector from the motherboard and jump the Green wire to one of the Black wires, reconnect the power cord and power the system, if power supply's fan and the hard drive run, then the PSU should be good.

    Note: Do not remove any wires from the plug, use a small piece of wire or a paper clip as a jumper.

    Power supply checks out and the system still does not work, again remove the power cord, hold the power button in for several seconds to discharge the residue power, reconnect the 24-pin connector to the motherboard.

    Remove all the PCI cards, the video card [if applicable], memory, all peripherals, disconnect the data and power cables to all the drives, check that the front panel cable is connected to motherboard, with nothing else connected to the system, reconnect the power cable and power the system on.

    If you do not get any beep codes and/or there is no change in the diagnostic lights, it would appear that the motherboard and/ or the processor has died.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • Thanks, when Dell say remove and reinstall cards/memory modules am i right in thinking they're saying take the module out and put it back into its slot again?  There is no additional software or harder to 'install" right?  I shall try these recommendations out over the wkend, thank you.

  •  makay123

    Yes, that is what Dell means.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
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  • Thanks.  No difference when i remove and re-install the cards.  However, when i jump the power supply green and black cables and then switch the power on, the fan does not work.   When i do not jump the cables and just try to switch the pc on without changing any settings, the fan does work.

    I am guessing its the power supply?  I believ the existing psu is 305W ATX 24 pin.  I've found what looks like a compatible replacement but its 450W (http://www.amazon.co.uk/450W-Gold-Silent-Power-Supply/dp/B000O38OPG/ref=sr_1_fkmr3_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1283099729&sr=8-1-fkmr3).  Will that be a problem?  thanks again.

  • makay123

    Sorry, cannot say if the CIT 450W Gold 12Cm Silent Atx Power Supply is compatible with the e521, as Amazon does not list details of the power connectors, but the wattage is fine.

    The e521 does not use Dell proprietary power supplies, you can install most standard ATX power supplies with either a 24-pin or 20+4-pin main motherboard power connector.

    As the E521 has an open back panel, a power supply with or without the on/off switch can be installed. You should be able to buy a compatible power supply from either a local or online computer store.

    Note: You will need a power supply, with four SATA power connectors.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • Thanks.  How about http://www.amazon.co.uk/Enhance-Supply-format-Active-selecting/dp/B000BI7ZQS/ref=tag_tdp_sv_edpp_i

    350W ATX POWER SUPPLY FOR PC 1 x 20 pin ATX Connector 4 x 4-pin P4 Connector 4 x Molex IDE Connector 1 x Floppy Connector Dimensions 150mm x 140mm x 85mm

    I guess i cant take the Sata cables from the existing psu and re-use them?  Presume the psu has to have 4 sata cables coming out of it.  thanks

     

  • makay123

    The 350w power supply, is NOT compatible, it has only a 20-pin main motherboard power connector [ the e521 requires either a 24-pin, or 20+4-pin connector]

    You are right, the SATA cables cannot be transfered.

    Usually a power supply will two SATA power connectors on each cable.

    A power supply with four SATA power connectors, similar to the 550w PSU, HERE is needed.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • Perfect, thanks for all your help.

  • makay123

    Happy to have helped.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
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  • I am having the same problem, new motherboard, thought my old one went out but it was the power supply, new power supply but it will just give the amber/orange light, thought it was the RAM like you said so i tried all new ram one at a time, and still nothing, so then I changed the processor, actually downgraded from an Athon 64x2 to a Sempron, and still nothing. what else could it be?

  • thelocogringo

    What is the sequence of the four 1-2-3-4 diagnostic lights located on the front panel?

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
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  • there are none just spinning fans and what not, light stays amber. i figure its the board because my old one boots fine.

  • thelocogringo

    Are there any 'Beeps'?

    First check that all the power and data cables are properly connected, including the cables to the front panel.

    If you are comfortable working around computers, you could try the following:

    Note: The only 100% method of testing a PSU, is to install a known working power supply.

    Unplug the cord from the power supply, hold the power button in for about 15/20 seconds, open the case, unplug the 24-pin power connector from the motherboard and jump the Green wire to one of the Black wires, reconnect the power cord and power the system on, if power supply, case fans and the hard drive run, then the PSU may be good.

    Note: Do not remove any wires from the plug, use a small piece of wire or a paper clip as a jumper.

    Power supply checks out and the system still does not work, again remove the power cord, hold the power button in for several seconds to discharge the residue power, reconnect the 24-pin connector to the motherboard.

    Remove all the PCI cards, the video card [if applicable], memory, all peripherals, disconnect the data and power cables to all the drives, check that the front panel cable is connected to motherboard, with nothing else connected to the system, reconnect the power cable and power the system on.

    If there is no difference in the diagnostic lights, 'Beep' codes and/or the LED indication of the power button, it would appear that the motherboard has died and/or maybe the processor, the only method, I know of checking a processor, is to install it a compatible working PC, or use a known working processor.
       
    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell

  • Bev, i have already tried all of this, there were no beeps, no light just the amber light solid, it is a burn board as everything else hooked to a same model board worked, so if the light is solid, its a burnt board. the bad thing is it was a brand new board that was burn and a board 11 years old is still working  better that it.

  • thelocogringo

    That's a bummer when that happens.

    Bev.

     

    If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
    Forum Member since 2001
    I am not employed by Dell