TomJones75
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

Okay, here's my thoughts...

I had a Dell XPS400 come into the shop with the "keyboard failure press F1 to continue" error. I entered the BIOS and turned off the USB boot and it seemed to work fine (I had the impression the computer was trying to boot from the keyboard or mouse). I was able to enter into any of the accounts after XP loaded. The customer picked up the computer and took it home only to be able to boot to the logon screen but the keyboard and mouse still failed to respond (no keyboard failure press F1 after the boot, just no response from HID input). I tried to install a PCI USB card with no success, and I also tried the Dell fix with the jumper pins to no avail. That only added the floppy drive error.

I honestly think this is a mobo failure. All headaches may be resolved by installing a new motherboard. But even the least expensive BTX mobo's range in price from $21 to $500+ so it's your call. Given the amount of Dell computers I repair I would say buy a new computer and NOT A DELL.

I recently had a Dell employee come in and say that people should buy Dell's from Dell, which tells me that Dell sends substandard machines to brick and mortar stores like Best Buy, Staples, and Comp USA. I hope that is not the case, but I'd be remiss to feel otherwise.

Either way... Dell, wake up! build better machines, give us back the PS/2 connection, even if most keyboard/mouse combo's are USB, when they fail (and you know they do) the PS/2 is almost always reliable.

At this point I am going to tell the customer his options... Buy a new motherboard, or buy a new computer and pull the data off the XPS400. This adds to the long list of Dell's I have to work on. Not always with this problem, but I work on more Dell's, and Gateway's than hp, or Sony, or Toshiba.

Best of luck folks! From now on Dell gets no help from me selling their machines.

walshtravels
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

I have a question.  Since the computer boots up and since the mouse and keyboard only work when connected to a USB extender (which is connected to one of the USB connections on the computer) and since the other USB ports are not operational, are you saying that there has been a motherboard failure that's limited to just all but one of the USB connections?  Is short,  do we have a failure of some USB connections that can only be corrected by a new motherboard?  I ask these questions because I am hoping that there is some other solution to USB ports becoming invisible.

TomJones75
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

I think it could be multiple faults, maybe it is a software, hardware, or firmware issue. When I last worked on the XPS400 none of the USB ports recognized the keyboard or mouse. After installing a PCI usb card, none of those were recognized (probably because the computer never got to the OS to recognize the card). Add to that, even Dell's techs don't have a solution, so I think that the mobo replacement could solve the issue. I suppose the only way to eliminate the USB failure and other hardware would be to try and install a fresh copy of XP on the machine, but I don't know how that would be done given that the computer only goes as far as the bios post then freezes from the keyboard error.

At the shop I also use PC Doctor (I know not a great program, but not my choice either I'm bound by protocol) and PC Doctor has a USB fob used in conjunction with the CD. When the fob is inserted, the lights illuminate so there is at least power at the USB ports, but data won't transfer.

At this point I am fed up with this problem, especially since Dell can not offer a decent solution. Keyboard and mouse can be ruled out as the fault, there is power to the ports but no data transfer so power at the USB ports can also be eliminated. Also, when using USB mouse/keyboard, any other computer will still boot to the OS and keyboard and mouse can be plugged in after startup. With all of this, I think the bios recognizes the ports but blocks data transfer which could be anywhere between the ports and the processor.

Has anyone pulled their mobo and closely inspected it for cracks or flaws? I'm not going that far because for me, the more time I spend trying to fix one machine, takes time from fixing others than can be fixed.

8 Krypton

Re: Keyboard failure

Isn't anyone listening?? I gave you the common fix for the problem in my previous post. But all I see is ranting and no indication that anyone even tried my suggestion.

 

And when that suggestion doesn't work, either a repair/reinstall or a reformat/reinstall of XP will.  And when all else fails, a new motherboard.

 

Guess I'm wasting my time in this thread.

 

Ron

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

TomJones75
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

Isn't anyone listening?? I gave you the common fix for the problem in my previous post. But all I see is ranting and no indication that anyone even tried my suggestion.

 

And when that suggestion doesn't work, either a repair/reinstall or a reformat/reinstall of XP will.  And when all else fails, a new motherboard.

 

Guess I'm wasting my time in this thread.

 

Ron

 

That common fix doesn't work. Pulling the CMOS battery only results in the floppy error (I don't care that it's because the BIOS is reset, it still adds to the headache that is Dell), but still leaves the keyboard/mouse non-functional. 

The ranting and raving is because whoever designed a computer without PS/2 connection is only hurting Dell and making USB failures that much harder to deal with. I know as well as anyone that all computer brands have bad systems, bad designs, ad nauseum... But it just seems to me that more and more Dell's have been showing up for repair.

Highlighted
walshtravels
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

So the general consensus is that: (1) pulling the battery and (2) changing the jumper will not work.  What about uninstalling and re-installing the USB drivers?  Is there a logical reason that shouldn't be tried?  Is there any reason why one USB port should still work and the others not work? Does the fact that one works and the others don't suggest a hardware problem?  Or not?  Are the only options (1) reinstall XP or (2) install a new motherboard?

TomJones75
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

So the general consensus is that: (1) pulling the battery and (2) changing the jumper will not work.  What about uninstalling and re-installing the USB drivers?  Is there a logical reason that shouldn't be tried?  Is there any reason why one USB port should still work and the others not work? Does the fact that one works and the others don't suggest a hardware problem?  Or not?  Are the only options (1) reinstall XP or (2) install a new motherboard?

That would be a fine idea if anyone could get past the "keyboard error press F1 to continue" screen, but with the keyboard being non-functional there is no way to proceed.

In my case none of the USB ports recognize the keyboard

It seems that restoring the computer might work, but that's only if the media boots on startup instead of the same error. If the error is still produced then the drive would have to be formatted on another PC then restored. I would imagine the same would go for installing a fresh copy of XP.

8 Krypton

Re: Keyboard failure

You've totally missed the point. You can't just pull the battery and put it right back. You have to leave the system unplugged and without the battery for at least SEVERAL HOURS or OVERNIGHT.

 

And if it's an old  battery (> ~2 yrs old) replace it with a new one, too.

 

BTW: No recent PC, Dell or otherwise, comes with PS/2 (or serial) ports any more. Old technology, gone the way of the doodoo bird.

 

Ron

 

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

0 Kudos
8 Krypton

Re: Keyboard failure

TomJones75,

Well, I guess you didn't listen to my warning about using stars to replace bad words. Your last post was deleted from this thread.

 

And I've been around this forum long enough to know that my suggestion about leaving the PC unplugged and without the battery for several hours or overnight has a fairly high rate of success in fixing the USB problem that's the topic of this thread. But if you choose not to listen, then it's entirely your own decision.

 

I'm outta here...

Ron

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I am not a Dell employee

TomJones75
6 Indium

Re: Keyboard failure

TomJones75,

Well, I guess you didn't listen to my warning about using stars to replace bad words. Your last post was deleted from this thread.

 

And I've been around this forum long enough to know that my suggestion about leaving the PC unplugged and without the battery for several hours or overnight has a fairly high rate of success in fixing the USB problem that's the topic of this thread. But if you choose not to listen, then it's entirely your own decision.

 

I'm outta here...

Ron

 

And again I will say this, I DID NOT use asterisks to mask any words, the community site does that. Plus the use of the correct spelling of an extinct bird is neither offensive, harrassment, or unlawful. Bottom line is Dell is opposed to any negative statements about their poor products. I see it everyday.