So I have a 790 SFF that's been sitting unused for a couple months, since I switched over to a 790 minitower. Anyway, at startup I get a solid blue power button, as well as a solid 1 and 3 amber numbers. Dells support documents say that means this:
" Memory modules are detected, but a memory configuration or compatibility error has occurred."
But I know the RAM works fine, and even when I swapped out RAM from my 790 minitower, which was what came in the SFF originally, I still get the same problem. So even the very same RAM I used in the SFF when it was my main system won't work. And I'm now running that same RAM again in my minitower, and typing this post with it. Also, I tried this with both an i5 2400 and an i3 2100. Same result.
The system doesn't post at all. Just sits there powered on with the lights mentioned above.
So what can I do? It doesn't like any RAM at all.
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There's 2 methods to try with the RAM. Remove the RAM down to one stick. Power up and see what it does. If the error doesn't repeat, insert one stick, power up, and so on. If you know all of your RAM is working, this could eliminate a bad DIMM slot. Of course, power off and unplug anytime working on the inside of a PC. Use power button to drain power from it when unplugged.
The second method: With all 4 sticks of RAM, or however many you have, just one at a time in slot 1. Do this if the error, blue light and 1 & 3, just keeps repeating. What if it's slot 1? Try one known working stick in all the slots. Furthermore, with 2 sticks of RAM, try slots 1 & 3 and then 2 & 4.
You said the RAM works in your 790 MT. If the above troubleshooting steps don't work, it's likely a bad MB. As proven in this forum, the 790 is pretty flexible in terms of RAM as compared to some other units.
My first thought is there's a problem on the motherboard. Check for anything shorting traces on the circuit board or memory sockets (like christmas tinsel, etc.)
Most likely the mainboard died.
I just tried with no RAM at all and got the no RAM indicator, which is a solid blue power button, and solid amber 1. So it can see when RAM is or isn't there, but can't use it. It's the exact proper spec the system needs.
Replace the size 2032 CMOS battery if it hasn't been done within the last 5 yrs. A low battery can cause all sorts of bizarre problems. It can often be one of the first things to rule out when problems occur.
What are you talking about? It's $5 Canadian for 5x batteries with free shipping.
Are you okay? Because I think you're seeing things.
Ha ha ha, but, here in the U.S., it shows $10.99 shipping.
Something I haven't repeated for a while is Sony batteries look like a good deal, but they don't last 5 yrs. They lasted me around 2. Energizer and Duracell do better.
I guess it's obviously more expensive for Americans. I'm in Canada though.
Also, I confirmed they were the same type of battery that was in my SFF, so I already bought them, and there are 5. But I will take your advice for next time and buy Duracell or Energizer.