Optiplex 960 Mini Tower - LED 2,3,4

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Optiplex 960 Mini Tower - LED 2,3,4

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Hi all,

I have a Dell Optiplex 960 Mini Tower, which was working fine. I had not used it for a week or so and then when I powered it ON after a week, it displayed the DELL Logo and then reboots, once it reboots LED 2,3,4 are AMBER blinking or static.

I checked optiplex documentation and troubleshooting tips, it says 2,3,4 corrupted BIOS. I then searched (googling) and some posts referred to a BIOS RTCRST Jumper on the Motherboard.

I have located the RTCRST Jumper Pins but it has no rubber jumper on it to pull out or to change to a different pin setting, all it has is TWO PINS without a jumper.

Any Ideas or suggestions will be really helpful as this is the only system I have and I can't afford a new one as good as this :-)

Will be most grateful for your assistance - Thanks

Thank You for reading !!
Sam 

All Replies
  • Hi Sam,

    Please try the below mentioned steps to fix this issue:

    Load the BIOS defaults. (Press the F2 key on  the Dell logo screen to enter the BIOS setup. Load BIOS defaults, save and exit)

    To clear the current CMOS settings, follow the steps given below:

    1. Turn off the computer and disconnect the power cable from the electrical outlet 

    2. Remove the computer cover

    3. Reset the current CMOS settings:

    a)  Locate the password (PSWD) and CMOS (RTC_RST) jumpers on the system board. (The jumper locations on the mini-tower computers are shown in            the image above.)

     b)  Remove the jumper plug from its pins

     c)  Place the password jumper plug on the RTC_RST pins and wait approximately 5 seconds

     d) Remove the jumper plug from the RTC_RST pins and place it back on the password pins

    Close the computer cover. 

    Connect your computer and devices to electrical outlets and turn them on.

    Please reply with the results.

    Thanks and Regards
    Satya P
    #iworkfordell
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region US Customers; UK Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here.

    If a post answers your question, please click the green "
    Yes" button.

  • Hi Satya,

    Thank you for your prompt and detailed reply, I have performed the following :

    My computer won't show dell logo neither an option to get into bios, it did earlier like when I first powered it on after a week or so and it let me in BIOS but after 10 or 20 seconds, it rebooted to amber lights.

    Ever since then it won't even show the dell logo, heres what i have done :

    a) Powered off the computer, case open and then removed the blue passwd jumper and placed it on RTCRST PINS.

    b) Waited 10 seconds, removed jumper and placed it back on PaSSWD pins

    c) Plugged everything back and powered on, NOTHING on Screen and LED 1 & 2 STATIC / BLINKING AMBER now.

    Any ideas ? will be grateful if you could get this box running :-) !! Thanks so much

  • Hi Sam,

    The 1&2 diagnostic LEDs indicate a possible system board failure. Sorry about that.

    Disconnect all internal and external peripherals, and restart the computer. If the computer boots, add the peripheral cards back one by one until you find the faulty one.

    Re-seat the memory modules. Try to start the system with each memory stick and swap the memory sticks in different. slots.

    I'm afraid the system board will have to be replaced if the above given steps does not resolve the issue.

    Thanks and Regards
    Satya P
    #iworkfordell
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region US Customers; UK Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here.

    If a post answers your question, please click the green "
    Yes" button.

  • Hi Satya,

    Sorry in replying late, got caught up by life :-)

    Now I am back, first thing I did was to test my desktop again after performing the steps you mentioned (re-seating the memory modules), I have no other cards installed in this machine (built-in graphics, network card, sound card - all built-in).

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This is what I did few months ago :

    a) Powered off the computer, case open and then removed the blue passwd jumper and placed it on RTCRST PINS.

    b) Waited 10 seconds, removed jumper and placed it back on PaSSWD pins

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    So, after almost giving up on it, I plugged the machine back to power and switched it ON, to my surprise it got past the dell logo and said no boot-device. I said OK, I plugged in a SATA HDD which was previously used with this and had windows 7 installed on it, it booted into windows fine (I am amazed). Now ONE THING ONLY is bugging me and that is :

    When ever it boots, it displays "AHCI BIOS NOT INSTALLED"

    Please note, that this Windows 7 on SATA was installed with RAID / AHCI ON option in the bios.

    I then downloaded the latest bios from dell support for optiplex 960, put it on a bootable dos usb and upgraded the bios, it did it successfully.

    My initial testing so far have revealed the following :

    a) It always displays "AHCI BIOS NOT INSTALLED"

    b) It was HANGING / STUCK in the beginning but then I plugged in the good Windows 7 SATA DISK and left it powered ON for several hours and it was fine.

    c) Upgraded the BIOS to latest version but still the message is being displayed.

    Any ideas as to what shall I do ?

    what is wrong with this machine :-) It's crazy as I left it powered off after performing the last activity mentioned above and in my previous post then this one and now it works !!!

    Will be most grateful for your assistance on resolving this and do you think this is still a reliable desktop ?

    Your help is Much appreciated !!!

    Many Thanks

    SAM

  • Hi Sam,

    Good to hear from you. I'm glad to know that the initial issue was fixed. Regarding the 'AHCI BIOS message', there are few things that we could try including ignoring the message as one of our community members suggested as it does not indicate any problem: http://dell.to/WUB2SM

    This could also happen if the hard drives are not set to AHCI mode in BIOS. Try these changes and see if that fixes the issue. I personally use a Optiplex 755 at work and have no issues with it what so ever. This indeed is a reliable desktop.

    Please reply if you have any further questions.

    Thanks and Regards
    Satya P
    #iworkfordell
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose your region US Customers; UK Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here.

    If a post answers your question, please click the green "
    Yes" button.

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