Hi all: longtime reader/first time poster.
I have a Dell Optiplex 5040 SFF with a SSD drive running windows 10 Pro. It's on HDMI to a TV that doesn't show me anything for the first 30 seconds as it tries to find the "type" of device" After owning it for 7 days, I plugged it into a DP monitor to go into the bios so I could boot from USB. Here's what happened
a) I noticed it says "Invalid Format" in yellow text then boots to windows, no problem even to hit F2 to go into Bios
b) I restarted and tried f2 but then it sticks on invalid format and won't boot to windows nor will it go into the bios.
c) booting from USB isn't recognized.
d) so I opened it up and changed the sata cables out, thinking then I could get to the bios: nope just invalid format.
Any options or Ideas would be appreciated.
Sadly the reselling company (allegedly a Windows Refurbished) responded saying that since I opened it up my warranty is void.
Solved! Go to Solution.
Re: grab a small video card and try?
Only if you already have one. Test with what you have around. Depends on what type of monitor inputs you have, try different cables, adapters. I use Dell adapter, but a basic adapter would work as well.
If you are connecting to a 4K TV using HDMI cable, check your TV settings to see if you can change HDMI to enhanced mode and try both HDMI2 or HDMI3.
Try clear CMOs by reseating battery:
Thanks for the suggestion, but I just tried that too. Youtube told me to hold the power down for 30 seconds, still no luck and didn't reset?
However for #4, yes very carefully!
Sadly still can't get into bios
Re: I plugged it into a DP monitor to go into the bios so I could boot from USB.
is the usb prepared using Microsoft installation media tool?
did you try press F12 after power on to get to boot list?
it sounds like you want to enter bios to change boot priority to make usb boot #1.
if F2 stops working, another way is to enter bios via Windows 10
Thanks for the tips.
Just tried it your way and it would freeze on "Invalid Format" so tried it again but instead of Uefi option I tried to boot to DVD as well as another time as boot to USB. Each time freezes on "Invalid Format."
However if I restart it and let it go with the original refurbisher supplied Win10 it will give me "Invalid Format" and then boot to windows: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FNIWLV7uyX8&feature=youtu.be
Problem is if I don't have that extract drive in on that sata port, and the dvd hooked up too: I am outta luck. Frankly I want to boot from my M.2 running dual boot linux and Win10, replace the SSD with 1.5tb I have surplus and let it fly.
If you are having a hard time reinstall Windows 10 in this pc now due to bug preventing you to boot from installation dvd or usb, try install Win 10 on your own ssd in another pc, then remove refurbisher’s sata ssd in 5040 and transplant your own ssd that has newly installed os into 5040. This way you try force 5040 to adjust to new clean os. It seems the refurbisher’s ssd has some system file corrupted although not mortal to boot up.
a) I freed up another SSD installed and tried booting the Dell with it as a blank drive: "invalid format" won't boot can't even get to bios
b) Install windows on another machine to the SSD and try again: "invalid format" won't boot can't even get to bios
c) tried moving the new SSD to different sata ports, each time: "invalid format" won't boot can't even get to bios
d) put the SSD from the refurbisher back in on different sata port: "invalid format" won't boot can't even get to bios
So put the SSD from the refurbisher back original sata port: "invalid format" then goes in to Win10 pro off refurbishers SSD
Thanks anyway, it's almost like the bios is locked this drive and refuses to boot. And yes I tried booting with no drives connect to sata/m.2/etc and still get "invalid format" won't boot can't even get to bios even after clearing the CMOS battery. Even tried booting without the battery in.
I am stumped!
That is frustrating. Unfortunately this motherboard appears to have no CMOs reset jumper. You might want to try removing CMOs battery for 24 hr to give yourself and the poor pc a break. Replace with brand new CMOs battery when you are back ready to start wrestle w it again.
Well I tried another battery by my blood sugar tester., just now: no luck.
However I noticed the speaker wire (4 wire set) wasn't connected, I connected it and guess what, now just locks at: invalid format. Powered off, removed power, pulled connector to speaker and back to "Invalid format, wait into windows."
Trying your 24 hour wait now.
You are focusing on the wrong directions. The error message is caused by video signal.
When you boot normally with the vendor drive, your monitor doesn't accept the initial resolution signal, hence you will get the error "invalid format" or blank screen. Until it POST and loaded windows, the resolution was changed by windows driver and you could then see the display.
When tapping on F2 or F12 to go to BIOS or to select boot option, the screen was there waiting for your next command but it was masked by the display error. Giving you false believe that your PC wasn't working. If you hit the power button at that point, your PC would power off because it was paused by you and didn't get to BIOS.
People tend to use VGA for troubleshooting, including enterprise system. But your Optiplex has no VGA port so you will need to get a setup whereas you can see the Dell logo display before proceeding with any changes.