I've spent the last two days scouring the support site and these discussion boards without much luck. My 1.5 year old 530s freezes right at the Dell BIOS screen. There's no error message, no error beeps, and the power light indicates that everything is ok. I cannot hit F2 or F12 to change Setup or Boot Menu, so I'm stuck there too. I can power it on and off and that's about the only thing I can do.
I've followed the online support wizard, and for some reason, after I tell it that I'm not getting any error messages, it starts telling me to start twiddling with Vista, when I'm still stuck at the system boot screen.
I'm running BIOS 1.0.5, if that helps. It's been running flawlessly before this event, and I'm have not made any hardware changes and the only software changes I've made in the last 2 months is that I bought "Plants vs. Zombies" (great game!)
Any insights, clues, ideas, (heck, even well-wishes and commiseration) is appreciated!
Can you restart with the Vista dvd in the drive? Maybe you'll be able to boot to the disk. Start pressing F2 or F12 before the first screen to see if you can get into the bios to check everything. Did you check the Diagnostic Lights, if any on your model? Make sure the keyboard is connected OK and switch usb ports on the rear of the tower. This is tough one. You have my sympathy!
PS You probably already found this trouble guide, which is very generic for your model: troubleshooting
I haven't tried to boot with the emergency disk, but I will give it a whirl. I've tried the F2 / F12 key thing and no such luck. There's no diagnostic lights at all, so no help there. Thanks for the quick response - I appreciate it. I'll report back when I have try it with the disk it. <fingers crossed>.
Well - some good news. My system started booting again. Of course, anything that mysteriously starts to work again could mysteriously stop again. The first thing I did was update the BIOS - I was on 1.0.5, so I was waaay behind. After the update, the system has been stable. I'm hoping that was the problem, or at least if not, I'll get a bit more indication / diagnostic data if the system starts to lock up again. I did also verify that the BIOS is set to boot off the DVD after the hard drive, so I do have the emergency disk boot option also, if need be.
I started having the same problem today. Inspiron Desktop 530S Freezes at the BIOS Start. No POST. Power light is on (blue) and not blinking. F2/F12/F8 have no effect. No error messages displayed, just DELL (BIOS?) screen with the F2/F12 message and an Intel logo.
Well, after many MANY tries, I did get my system to boot so that I could upgrade the BIOS, and it has been stable since. I'd try botting it several times, wait about an hour and try again, if you don't have any luck. I'd also try booting off the DVD drive, just so you could get to the point that you could upgrade the BIOS. Already have the latest BIOS? I'm stumped then.
The exact thing started happening to me yesterday on my Inspiron 530. It freezes at the very first screen and doesn't respond to any key presses. I've tried moving my keyboard into different USB plugs with no luck. I've tried booting from the DVD with no luck. I can't get it to even go into the BIOS, so I seem to be just out of luck. I've tried different combinations of my RAM sticks in case one was bad and causing it to freeze, but no change. I removed and reinserted the CMOS battery to try to reset things, but still nothing. It's not a hard drive issue, because I unhooked the hard drives, which should still enable me to get to the BIOS, but nothing. I'm pretty stuck here. The good news is that I think the drives are fine, and I'll be able to retrieve my data, but I'm afraid that by process of elimination, I may have a motheboard issue. The original poster was lucky enough for it just to resolve itself. Does anyone have any other tips that may allow me to attempt to upgrade my BIOS? (1.0.3 on the Inspiron 530 purchased in September 2007)
Try to unplug the all USB devices and the power cord from the computer for about a minute. Then just plug in the power cord and turn on the computer without any USB devices.
Disconnect the hard drive data and power cable.
Then what happens.
If it posts with error hook drive power only.
If it freezes again try new hard drive.
If it doesnt freeze then buy a new drive and try to install os on that drive and revcover data from the old drive with a drive wire.
DriveWire is the ideal solution for transferring the data from a desktop or notebook PC to a new hard drive in a few easy steps. It makes what can otherwise be a daunting and tricky process, painless and easy. DriveWire is bundled with Apricorn's "Upgrade Suite" which features the award winning "EZ Gig II" cloning software for Windows and "Shirt Pocket's SuperDuper!" for Mac. When used together, DriveWire makes it easy to transfer your OS, data, applications, documents, address books, e-mail, settings and preferences - from the old drive to a new drive, in few easy steps. Start by attaching the new 2.5" or 3.5" hard drive to the appropriate connector on DriveWire's cable head. Then connect the AC power adapter and the USB cable. Now, boot up your computer using the "Upgrade Suite" bootable CD and make and exact clone of the old drive onto a new drive. After the transfer is completed, install the new hard drive into the desktop or notebook, and the computer will boot up just like normal. DriveWire includes Apricorn's Upgrade Suite with EZ Gig II Cloning & Upgrade software for Windows and Shirt Pocket's SuperDuper! for Mac, a hybrid adapter that connects to any 2.5", 3.5" IDE/PATA or SATA Hard Drive, USB 2.0 cable (USB 1.1 compatible) and high quality UL Listed power adapter. This unique adapter provides a SATA connector for the new style drives as well as 44 pin connector for a 2.5" Notebook IDE/PATA Hard Drive and 40 pin connector for a standard 3.5" IDE/PATA Hard Drive, allowing you to connect a hard drive to any desktop or notebook computer with a USB 2.0 port. This is the perfect solution for anyone needing immediate or temporary access to a Hard Drive. You won't need to buy a different enclosure for every Hard Drive or worry about whether or not you have enough power through your USB ports run the device. Because DriveWire is guaranteed to safely provide all the power you need and it is compatible with all of today's 2.5, 3.5 IDE/PATA or SATA Hard Drives. WManufacturer Part# : ADW-USB-KITDell Part# : A1287050
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I was meaning to post a follow-up but then got sidetracked. I had already connected the hard drives and the DVD drive to ensure it wasn't a bad drive. I took out the CMOS battery again and held down the power button (while the computer was unplugged) for 30 seconds or so before reinserting the battery. I'm not sure if this accomplished anything, because at the same time, I unplugged all USB devices except for the keyboard and finally got it to go past the first screen and go into the BIOS. I powered down again, reconnected the drives and the mouse, went through setup in the BIOS, and got it to boot. Then I upgraded the BIOS (from 1.0.3 to 1.0.18), and things have been fine now for a couple of days.
The irony was that all this happened while I was in the midst of setting up an HP MediaSmart (with Windows Home Server) as a file server/automatic backup machine, and I'd not yet done the backup of my dell. But all is backed up now, and hopefully things will remain working.
I as well get the Dell Screen when I boot up the pc. It takes like 12 or more minutes to eventually load windows. (Vista) Is there something that can be done to speed this process up? This just started happening this morning. Last night when I shut down the pc, it was running normally. Thanks!
Try booting your computer only with monitor & power cords plugged in. Sometimes a USB port/Device may cause such issues.
try reseating memory, or turning on only with 1 memory or clear the CMOS settings using the RTCRT jumper on the m/b.
I appreciate the suggestions, but if you read through the thread, I've resolved my problems over a week ago. PLease read the thread and offer help to those in need.
Suffering the same problems here - all was fine on Saturday shut down no problems. Started up Sunday evening, nothing simply the DELL screen and no way into BIOS.
Unplugged all hd/dvd drives etc and USB ports - leaving only the screen plugged in. Still nothing.
Why can't DELL make a machine that actually shows the POST taking place - would give me more idea as to what the problem is.
The only advice I can offer is that I eventually got my system to boot, and I IMMEDIATELY upgraded the BIOS. I've had no problems since. I'd try a few times each hour over the course of a day. Good luck.