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Laptop Beeping on startup

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Laptop Beeping on startup

  • Hi,

    I have an alienware M14x and it when you power it up it just sits there beeping with a black screen. I've had this thing for around a month so can't quite believe it has stopped working already. Any idea what has gone wrong?

  • Remove the battery from the M14x. Plug the AC adapter in. Try to power it on. What happens?

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  • Exactly the same as before. Now I've had a bit more time to do some research, apparantly the number of beeps is significant. It keeps beeping 7 times which I'm led to believe is a CPU failure?

    Edit: Sorry, forgot to thank you for your reply :)

  • 7 beeps may not mean the CPU or mobo is dead. I mean it could but lets hope it's not.

    Try this. Pull the battery and unplug the system. Flip it over and remove the memory from it. Then put in just one stick. Put it back together and see if it will boot.


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  • I think I'm just going to have to return it to Dell, I don't quite feel comfortable taking it apart myself. What are Dell's position on refunds? I don't think a high-end laptop lasting less than a month is in any way acceptable. Especially when I have important University exams in January!

  • Check out this site and follow their advice.

    Is it seven beeps in a row or a combination of beeps?

    Laptop Codes?

    Beep CodePossible Problem

    One :Possible motherboard failure – BIOS ROM checksum failure
    Two :No RAM detected
    NOTE: If you installed or replaced the memory module, ensure that the memory module is seated properly.
    Three :Possible motherboard failure – Chipset error
    Four :RAM read/write failure
    Five :Real Time Clock failure
    Six :Video card or chip failure
    Seven :Processor failure
    Eight :Display failure


    Dell Beep Code Meanings

    1-1-2 Processor Register Failure
    1-1-3 NVRam
    1-1-4 ROM Bios checksum failure
    1-2-1 Programmable Interval Timer
    1-2-2 DMA Initialization Failure
    1-2-3 Direct Memory Access Page Register Read/Write Failure
    1-3-1 - 2-4-4 Memory/RAM Not Properly Identified or Used
    3-1-1 Slave DMA Registration Failure
    3-1-2 Master DMA Registration Failure
    3-1-3 Master Interrupt Mask Registration Failure
    3-1-4 Slave Interrupt Mask Registration Failure
    3-2-2 Interrupted Vector Loading Failure
    3-2-4 Keyboard Controller (Input) Test Failure
    3-3-1 NVRam Insufficient Power
    3-3-2 Improperly configured NVRam
    3-3-4 Video Memory(RAM) Test Failure
    3-4-1 Screen Output Initialization Failure
    3-4-2 Screen Retrace Failure
    3-4-3 Failure Finding Video Read Only Memory
    4-2-1 Lack of Time Tick
    4-2-2 Shutdown Failure
    4-2-3 Failure in Gate A20
    4-2-4 Unexpected Interruption in Protect Mode
    4-3-1 Memory Address Failure above 0FFFFH
    4-3-4 Non Functioning Time Of Day Clock
    4-4-1 Serial And/Or Parallel Port Test Failure
    4-4-4 Cache Test Failure


    As far as returns go, I believe if you have had the computer for 30 days you are most likely stuck with it. They may offer a relacement but I would stay far away from that offer as they are usually refurbished returned computers. Have Dell send out a tech to evaluate the computer.

  • Thanks for your reply! To me it sounds like 7 continuous beeps, but this might help:

  • Your video wont play for the following reason:

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    An unlisted video is a different type of private video. Unlisted means that only people who know the link to the video can view it (such as friends or family to whom you send the link). An unlisted video will not appear in any of YouTube's public spaces (such as search results, your channel, or the Browse page). An unlisted video is different to a private video in these ways:

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  • Good old youtube, I'll change the privacy settings now. Try this link:

  • Now it is playing. Took a long time to load.

    Seen beeps, bad CPU?

    Might be a disconnected cable or CPU / mobo. Just my opinion.

    Call Dell and have a tech come out or have them walk you through the process of opening it up and having a look-see.

  • Is there much chance of a tech coming out at this time of year? Or shall I just wait unti January?

  • Sooner you call the sooner they come out. At least schedule the appointment.

    You are sure there are no discs in any drive, all external devices are disconnected, no stuck keys anywhere on the laptop, pluged into wall socket with battery removed, and toes crossed when turning on the computer?

  • Just checked everything again (how I wish it were easier to remove the battery) and still behaving the same. Is this the right number to call? 0844 338 1000

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  • Phoned support twice and after someone answers all I can hear is people talking in the background. I can just tell this going to be fun!

    Edit: 3rd time is the charm, tech guy is coming out on the 28th to replace the motherboard. Must say one of the best experiences I've had with customer support!