Internet for Beginners/Hardware problem


Hi Kevin
This is more about hardware, so maybe you won't be able to help.
Dealing with a 2yr old Compaq Presario, WIN7, landline modem.
At the top right corner of the front of the computer, just "around the corner" is a clear oblong plastic button that you push to turn the computer on. When on, it then becomes illuminated from within with a blue light. If for some reason one need to turn the computer off, other than the normal computer driven log off/turn off, one presses the button and holds down it until the blue color disappears.
Recently, on attempting to start the computer, the monitor presented me with a very DOS - like page, white text on a black background, saying in effect that the computer had not been turned off properly. Several choices were presented, eg "Open in normal mode", "Open in Safe mode", etc. I was to select one by moving the highlight, using keyboard arrows, and then, presumably to "Select" that by hitting <Enter>. The "Open in normal mode" was already highlit, so I hit <Enter>. Nothing happened. I tried moving the highlight with the arrows. Nothing . I tried <ContI><Alt><Del>. Nothing. The keyboard was essentially dead. Turned computer off (holding the blue button). Several hours later I tried again. This time, the screen was filled with row upon row of  short blocks of "alpha - symbolics" - I didn't see any numbers. Again, the keyboard was unresponsive. Later, a third time, a single line appeared saying "wrong checksum". Here, <ContI><Alt><Del> worked - but only to give me the alpha-symbolic screen again. Then, on my fourth attempt, the computer simply wouldn't go into the blue button mode at all and the screen remained blank. Instead, rather than the blue color, the button was now illuminated with an "incandescent bulb" color - an orange-ish white - and was emitting a faint "beep - beep - beep" sound. Holding the button could turn it off, but on pressing the button again, although it would flash blue momentarily, it then reverted to the beeping mode. Later that night, on a last attempt, the computer turned on OK! It works pretty well now, but once it did again go to beep mode on starting. I found if I turned it off and kept holding the button for a good 10 seconds, I was able - that time at least - to get it to open on the next try. What is this beeping supposed to be telling me? And why all of a sudden is this happening?

Hardware problem

Hi Dave,

No problem. I can work with hardware related issues also. Why are you turning off the computer by holding down the power button? The proper way to do this is within Windows.

Let's start with the beeps. Listen to it carefully and tell me what the pattern is. If there's any delay, mention it and also if it's short or long beeps.


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I`m familiar with Windows 95/98/2K/XP/7 problems and will try my best to assist you. Feel free to ask any software or hardware related questions.


I started using computers over 10 years ago and have grown to both love and hate it to say the least. I have studied computer programming and graduated with a bachelor's degree in computer science.

Bachelors in computer information science

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