DOS/DOS error message

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QUESTION: Greetings.  I have an IBM 5150 PC (yes, the original IBM PC) probably from 1981. I am pretty positive it has DOS version 3.1 installed on it.   It has largely been packed away for the last 15 years or more.  It did boot up as recently as 18 months ago and was largely working fine.   Today, I turned it on and it refuses to boot. You never get to a C prompt.  The ONLY message displayed on the screen is "40FF 201" which comes up about 20 seconds after powering on. That message just stays on the monitor and you can't do anything.  No amount of keyboard commands has any effect.  I suspect it is some indication of a hardware failure.  I did search a bunch of websites this evening trying to come up with an answer on this message but came up dry.  I did try to boot from a DOS floppy disk (it does briefly look at the A drive when it comes on) but with the same results.   Anyway, was just wondering if you have any indication of what this error message might be.   Thanks in advance

ANSWER: I suspect its a bios thing maybe the battery. It most likely lost its charge.
Those were the old type that were rechargeable. the PC would have to left plugged in
for some time to recharge.Try getting to the bios. The delete key
held down during boot up.i may be wrong but try it anyway. Its a long time
since i worked on one of those.
Dave

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I took your advice last night and had no luck.  Tried all different combinations of function keys also.  Must have tried it 20 times.  So I left the computer plugged in overnight, turned it on and presto! - it booted up just fine. Who knows.  Maybe it does have some sort of rechargeable battery however when I booted it 18 months ago it hadn't been started in 5 years at least and it started up immediately.   Anyway, thanks for your help

Answer
Maybe it does have some sort of rechargeable battery however when I booted it 18 months ago it hadn't been started in 5 years at least and it started up immediately. WHO KNOWS?
I knew. It does have a rechargeable battery. It soldered in. you most likely
would not be able to get a new one not available. It also cant be replaced
with the newer type round ni cad. so it just needs to be left plugged in
to work right.
Dave

DOS

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David Cohen

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I can answer most questions on repairs,upgrades,dos,audio,video,on older systems,and modern computers,How to find and intsall files and programs including sound,midi,and wave formats.expert advice on older windows systems such as 3.1 and how to debug them.please give as much information on system as possible and type of trouble.

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