I don't really claim to be a hardcore nerd, nor a particularly "gifted" nerd (as in being more skilled in nerd-related feats than other nerds), but every now and then I enjoy building a new computer. I can thank John Deng for instructing me and helping me build my first computer back in high school, and I feel pretty confident making hardware upgrades/swaps on my own. I am not intimidated by choosing between a "OZC GameXStream OZC600GXSSLI ATX12V 600W Power supply" versus a "Rosewill RP600V2-S-SL 600W SLI Ready-ATX12V V2.01 Power supply".
So, it was finally time for me to rebuild my computer, as my previous one was approaching 5 years old in some areas (processor, most significantly). I purchased for my new build:
* AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ Windsor 3.0Ghz processor
* 2GB (2 x 1GB) of Corsair 240-pin DDR2 800 SDRAM
* Sapphire Radeon X1950GT 512MB video card
* Samsung 500GB 7200RPM 16MB cache hard drive
* a new case (Cooler Master RC-690)
* the Rosewill power supply referenced earlier
* ASUS M2N-SLI Deluxe AM2 NVIDIA nForce 570 motherboard
I received all of these parts from Newegg.com right before heading out of town for Caleb and Laura's wedding so I wasn't able to put it all together until returning to Greenville this week. I began building the system as usual and soon ran into a problem: my power supply seemed to be not working. I tested my motherboard with my old power supply to make sure it wasn't a MB issue. Frustrated, I RMAed my power supply to Newegg and purchased a new one at Best Buy. However, when I tried my new power supply out I still wasn't getting any juice to my motherboard.
Next, I did what any would-be nerd would have done: I googled it. After searching the internet for some time I was left feeling somewhat frustrated and at a loss for what to do - "could both my power supplies have been busted?" I wondered.
Eventually, I discovered that everything ran perfectly outside of my case (i.e. when my motherboard was touching no part of the metal case). This is more or less what my computer looked like at this point. Yes, my motherboard is sitting on top of a piece of cardboard. I figured the problem at this point was some kind of electrical issue between my motherboard and case, since both power supplies had been verified to work properly when my motherboard was not touching my case.
Last night, I had a sudden burst of inspiration while I was lying in bed trying to go to sleep: what if my my case screws used for mounting the motherboard were causing some kind of short! This afternoon I tested my theory, and sure enough the issue was two minor mounting screws I had screwed into holes on my case which did not line up with corresponding screw holes on my motherboard - thus these two brass mounting screws were directly touching the motherboard itself, causing the power circuit to short or something (I'm not an Electrical Engineer, so I don't really know). I removed the offending screws, mounted my board, made my wish, and flipped the power switch - success! The motherboard light came on!
And thus ends my saga - my new computer is now fully functional and residing within its case as it should, and I write this blog entry from it :)
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