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Dell Optiplex Diagnostic Light Codes

Dell Diagnostics

CAUTION: Before you begin any of the procedures in this section, follow the safety instructions located in the Product Information Guide.

When to Use the Dell Diagnostics

If you experience a problem with your computer, perform the checks in this section and run the Dell Diagnostics before you contact Dell for technical assistance.

It is recommended that you print these procedures before you begin.

NOTICE: The Dell Diagnostics works only on Dell™ computers.

Enter system setup (see Entering System Setup), review your computer's configuration information, and ensure that the device you want to test displays in system setup and is active.

Start the Dell Diagnostics from either your hard drive or from the Drivers and Utilities CD (an optional CD also known as the ResourceCD). See Starting the Dell Diagnostics From Your Hard Drive or Starting the Dell Diagnostics From the Drivers and Utilities CD (Optional) for more information.

Starting the Dell Diagnostics From Your Hard Drive

  1. Turn on (or restart) your computer.

     
  2. When the DELL™ logo appears, press <F12> immediately.

     
NOTE: If you see a message stating that no diagnostics utility partition has been found, run the Dell Diagnostics from your optional Drivers and Utilities CD. See Finding Information for more information about the optional Drivers and Utilities CD.

If you wait too long and the operating system logo appears, continue to wait until you see the Microsoft® Windows® desktop. Then shut down your computer and try again.

  1. When the boot device list appears, highlight Boot to Utility Partition and press <Enter>.

     
  2. When the Dell Diagnostics Main Menu appears, select the test you want to run (see Dell Diagnostics Main Menu).

     

Starting the Dell Diagnostics From the Drivers and Utilities CD (Optional)

  1. Insert the Drivers and Utilities CD (optional).

     
  2. Shut down and restart the computer.

     

When the DELL logo appears, press <F12> immediately.

If you wait too long and the Windows logo appears, continue to wait until you see the Windows desktop. Then shut down your computer and try again.

NOTE: The next steps change the boot sequence for one time only. On the next start-up, the computer boots according to the devices specified in system setup.
  1. When the boot device list appears, highlight IDE CD-ROM Device and press <Enter>.

     
  2. Select the IDE CD-ROM Device option from the CD boot menu.

     
  3. Select the Boot from CD-ROM option from the menu that appears.

     
  4. Type 1 to start the Drivers and Utilities CD menu.

     
  5. Type 2 to start the Dell Diagnostics.

     
  6. Select Run the 32 Bit Dell Diagnostics from the numbered list. If multiple versions are listed, select the version appropriate for your computer.

     
  7. When the Dell Diagnostics Main Menu appears, select the test you want to run (see Dell Diagnostics Main Menu).

     

Dell Diagnostics Main Menu

  1. After the Dell Diagnostics loads and the Main Menu screen appears, click the button for the option you want.

     

 

Option

Function 

Express Test Performs a quick test of devices. This test typically takes 10 to 20 minutes and requires no interaction on your part. Run Express Test first to increase the possibility of tracing the problem quickly.
Extended Test Performs a thorough check of devices. This test typically takes an hour or more and requires you to answer questions periodically.
Custom Test Tests a specific device. You can customize the tests you want to run.
Symptom Tree Lists the most common symptoms encountered and allows you to select a test based on the symptom of the problem you are having.
 

  1. If a problem is encountered during a test, a message appears with an error code and a description of the problem. Write down the error code and problem description and follow the instructions on the screen.

     

If you cannot resolve the error condition, contact Dell (see Contacting Dell).

NOTE: The Service Tag for your computer is located at the top of each test screen. If you contact Dell, technical support will ask for your Service Tag. Your computer's Service Tag is listed in the System Info option in system setup. See System Setup for more information.
  1. If you run a test from the Custom Test or Symptom Tree option, click the applicable tab described in the following table for more information.

     

 

Tab

Function 

Results Displays the results of the test and any error conditions encountered.
Errors Displays error conditions encountered, error codes, and the problem description.
Help Describes the test and may indicate requirements for running the test.
Configuration Displays your hardware configuration for the selected device.

The Dell Diagnostics obtains configuration information for all devices from system setup, memory, and various internal tests, and it displays the information in the device list in the left pane of the screen. The device list may not display the names of all the components installed on your computer or all devices attached to your computer.

Parameters Allows you to customize the test by changing the test settings.
 

  1. When the tests are completed, if you are running the Dell Diagnostics from the Drivers and Utilities CD, remove the CD.

     
  2. Close the test screen to return to the Main Menu screen. To exit the Dell Diagnostics and restart the computer, close the Main Menu screen.

     

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System Lights

Your power button light and hard-drive light may indicate a computer problem.

 

Power Light

Problem Description

Suggested Resolution

Solid green Power is on, and the computer is operating normally. On the desktop computer, a solid green light indicates a network connection. No corrective action is required.
Blinking green The computer is in a power-saving mode (Microsoft® Windows® XP). Press the power button, move the mouse, or press a key on the keyboard to wake the computer.
Blinks green several times and then turns off A configuration error exists. Check the diagnostic lights to see if the specific problem is identified (see Diagnostic Lights).
Solid yellow The Dell Diagnostics is running a test, or a device on the system board may be faulty or incorrectly installed. If the Dell Diagnostics is running, allow the testing to complete.

If the computer does not boot, contact Dell for technical assistance (see Contacting Dell).

Blinking yellow A power supply or system board failure has occurred. See Power Problems.
Solid green and a beep code during POST A problem was detected while the BIOS was executing. See Beep Codes for instructions on diagnosing the beep code. Also, check the diagnostic lights to see if the specific problem is identified (see Diagnostic Lights).
Solid green power light and no beep code and no video during POST The monitor or the graphics card may be faulty or incorrectly installed. Check the diagnostic lights to see if the specific problem is identified (see Diagnostic Lights).

See Video and Monitor Problems.

Solid green power light and no beep code but the computer locks up during POST An integrated system board device may be faulty. Check the diagnostic lights to see if the specific problem is identified (see Diagnostic Lights). If the problem is not identified, contact Dell for technical assistance (see Contacting Dell).
 

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Diagnostic Lights

CAUTION: Before you begin any of the procedures in this section, follow the safety instructions located in the Product Information Guide.

To help you troubleshoot a problem, your computer has four lights labeled "1," "2," "3," and "4" on the front or back panel. The lights can be off or green. When the computer starts normally, the patterns or codes on the lights change as the boot process completes.

If the POST portion of system boot completes successfully, all four lights display solid green. If the computer malfunctions during the POST process, the pattern displayed on the LEDs may help identify where in the process the computer halted.

NOTE: The orientation of the diagnostic lights may vary dependent upon the computer type. The diagnostic lights can appear either vertical or horizontal.

 

Light Pattern

Problem Description

Suggested Resolution

 

 

The computer is in a normal "off" condition, or a possible pre-BIOS failure has occurred.

The diagnostic lights are not lit after the computer successfully boots to the operating system.

Plug the computer into a working electrical outlet and press the power button.
 

 

A possible BIOS failure has occurred; the computer is in the recovery mode. Run the BIOS Recovery utility, wait for recovery completion, and then restart the computer.
 

 

A possible processor failure has occurred. Reinstall the processor and restart the computer.
 

 

Memory modules are detected, but a memory failure has occurred.
bulletIf you have one memory module installed, reinstall it and restart the computer. (see Memory for instructions on how to remove and install memory modules.)
bulletIf you have two or more memory modules installed, remove the modules, reinstall one module, and then restart the computer. If the computer starts normally, reinstall an additional module. Continue until you have identified a faulty module or reinstalled all modules without error.
bulletIf available, install properly working memory of the same type into your computer.
bulletIf the problem persists, contact Dell (see Contacting Dell).
 

 

A possible graphics card failure has occurred.
bulletIf the computer has a graphics card, remove the card, reinstall it, and then restart the computer.
bulletIf the problem still exists, install a graphics card that you know works and restart the computer.
bulletIf the problem persists or the computer has integrated graphics, contact Dell (see Contacting Dell).
 

 

A possible floppy or hard drive failure has occurred. Reseat all power and data cables and restart the computer.
 

 

A possible USB failure has occurred. Reinstall all USB devices, check cable connections, and then restart the computer.
 

 

No memory modules are detected.
bulletIf you have one memory module installed, reinstall it and restart the computer. (see Memory for instructions on how to remove and install memory modules.)
bulletIf you have two or more memory modules installed, remove the modules, reinstall one module, and then restart the computer. If the computer starts normally, reinstall an additional module. Continue until you have identified a faulty module or reinstalled all modules without error.
bulletIf available, install properly working memory of the same type into your computer.
bulletIf the problem persists, contact Dell (see Contacting Dell).
 

 

Memory modules are detected, but a memory configuration or compatibility error exists.
bulletEnsure that no special memory module/memory connector placement requirements exist (see Memory).
bulletVerify that the memory modules that you are installing are compatible with your computer (see Memory).
bulletIf the problem persists, contact Dell (see Contacting Dell).
 

 

A failure has occurred.

This pattern also displays when you enter system setup (see Entering System Setup) and may not indicate a problem.

bulletEnsure that the cables are properly connected to the system board from the hard drive, CD drive, and DVD drive.
bulletCheck the computer message that appears on your monitor screen.
bulletIf the problem persists, contact Dell (see Contacting Dell).
 

 

After POST is complete, all four diagnostic lights turn green briefly before turning off to indicate normal operating condition. None.
 

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Beep Codes

Your computer might emit a series of beeps during start-up if the monitor cannot display errors or problems. This series of beeps, called a beep code, identifies a problem. One possible beep code (code 1-3-1) consists of one beep, a burst of three beeps, and then one beep. This beep code tells you that the computer encountered a memory problem.

If your computer beeps during start-up:

  1. Write down the beep code on the Diagnostics Checklist.

     
  2. Run the Dell Diagnostics to identify a more serious cause (see Dell Diagnostics).

     
  3. Contact Dell for technical assistance (see Contacting Dell).

     

 

Code

Cause

1-1-2 Microprocessor register failure
1-1-3 NVRAM read/write failure
1-1-4 ROM BIOS checksum failure
1-2-1 Programmable interval timer failure
1-2-2 DMA initialization failure
1-2-3 DMA page register read/write failure
1-3 Video Memory test failure
1-3-1 through 2-4-4 Memory not being properly identified or used
3-1-1 Slave DMA register failure
3-1-2 Master DMA register failure
3-1-3 Master interrupt mask register failure
3-1-4 Slave interrupt mask register failure
3-2-2 Interrupt vector loading failure
3-2-4 Keyboard Controller test failure
3-3-1 NVRAM power loss
3-3-2 Invalid NVRAM configuration
3-3-4 Video Memory test failure
3-4-1 Screen initialization failure
3-4-2 Screen retrace failure
3-4-3 Search for video ROM failure
4-2-1 No timer tick
4-2-2 Shutdown failure
4-2-3 Gate A20 failure
4-2-4 Unexpected interrupt in protected mode
4-3-1 Memory failure above address 0FFFFh
4-3-3 Timer-chip counter 2 failure
4-3-4 Time-of-day clock stopped
4-4-1 Serial or parallel port test failure
4-4-2 Failure to decompress code to shadowed memory
4-4-3 Math-coprocessor test failure
4-4-4 Cache test failure
 

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Error Messages

 

Light Problem Resolution
Green Operating normally  
Blinking Green

The computer is in the suspended state (Microsoft® Windows® 2000 and Windows XP).

Press the power button, move the mouse, or press a key on the keyboard to wake the computer.

Blinks green several times and then turns off

 

A configuration error exists. Check "Diagnostic Lights"

 

 
Solid yellow

The Dell Diagnostics is running a

test, or a device on the system board

may be faulty or incorrectly installed.

 

Check "Diagnostic Lights" on page 23 to see if

the specific problem is identified

 

Blinking yellow

A power supply or system board failure has occurred.

 

Check "Diagnostic Lights" on page 23 to see if the specific problem is identified

 

Solid green and a beep code during POST

 

A problem was detected while the BIOS was executing.

 

See "Beep Codes" on page 26 for instructions on diagnosing the beep code. Also, check "Diagnostic Lights" on page 23 to see if the specific problem is identified

 

Solid green power light, no beep code and no video during POST

 

The monitor or the graphics card may be faulty or incorrectly installed

 

Check "Diagnostic Lights" on page 23 to see if the specific problem is identified.

 

Solid green power light and no beep code but the computer locks up during POST

 

An integrated system board device may be faulty.

 

Check "Diagnostic Lights" on page 23 to see if the specific problem is identified.

 

Primary Computer Service, Inc.
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Revised: 02/10/14