barcode scanner for java Before and During the Video Test: The Beep Codes in Software

Encoder QR Code in Software Before and During the Video Test: The Beep Codes

Before and During the Video Test: The Beep Codes
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The computer tests the most basic parts of the computer first, up to and including the video card In early PCs, you d hear a series of beeps called beep codes if anything went wrong By using beep codes before and during the video test, the computer could communicate with you (If a POST error occurs before the video is available, obviously the error must manifest itself as beeps because nothing can display on the screen) The meaning of the beep code you d hear varied among different BIOS manufacturers You could find the beep codes for a specific motherboard in its motherboard manual Most modern PCs have only a single beep code, which is for bad or missing video one long beep followed by three short beeps Check the \SHAREWARE\SOUNDS folder on the CD-ROM that accompanies this book for a recording of an Award BIOS reporting a failed video test
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You ll find lots of online documentation about beep codes, but it s usually badly outdated!
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You ll hear three other beep sequences on most PCs (although they re not officially beep codes) At the end of a successful POST, the PC will produce one or two short beeps, simply to inform you that all is well Most systems make a rather strange noise when the RAM is missing or very seriously damaged Unlike traditional beep codes, this code repeats until you shut off the system I ve included a recording of one of the more common variations on the CD-ROM in the \SHAREWARE\SOUNDS folder Finally, your speaker might make beeps for reasons that aren t POST or boot related One of the more common is a series of short beeps after the system s been running for a while That s a CPU alarm telling you the CPU is approaching its high heat limit
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Some newer motherboards can also talk to you if there is a problem during POST To use this feature, all that is normally required is to plug a pair of speakers or headphones into the onboard sound card
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After the video has tested okay, any POST errors will display on the screen as a text error If you get a text error, the problem is usually, but not always, self-explanatory (Figure 529) Text errors are far more useful than beep codes because you can simply read the screen to determine the bad device
POST Cards
Beep codes, numeric codes, and text error codes, although helpful, can Figure 529 sometimes be misleading Worse than that, an inoperative device can sometimes disrupt the POST, forcing the machine into an endless loop This causes the PC to act dead no beeps and nothing on the screen In this case, you need a device, called a POST card , to monitor the POST and identify which piece of hardware is causing the trouble POST cards are simple cards that snap into an expansion slot on your system A small, two-character light-emitting diode (LED) readout on the card indicates what device the POST is currently testing (Figure 530) The documentation that comes with the POST card tells you what the codes mean BIOS makers also provide this information on their Web sites Manufacturers make POST cards for all types of desktop PCs POST cards work with any BIOS, but you need to know the type of BIOS you have in order to interpret the readout properly I usually only pull out a POST card when the usual POST errors fail to appear When a computer provides a beep or text error code that doesn t make sense, or if your machine keeps locking up, some device has stalled the POST Because the POST card will tell you which device is being tested, the frozen system will stay at that point in the POST, and the error will stay on the POST card s readout Many companies sell POST cards today, with prices ranging from the affordable to the outrageous Spend the absolute least amount of money you can The more expensive cards add bells and whistles that you do not need, such as diagnostic software and voltmeters
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