Dell I/O Front Panel Test

| April 30, 2010

If you are experiencing problems with your Dell computer, you need to first troubleshoot the front I / O panel to confirm the it is good before proceeding to more complex and expensive repairs, such as the power supply or motherboard. The I/O panel contains the switch, a diagnostic LED and sometimes even USB Ports. Perform the following test to confirm the panel is good in a no power situation.

Performing the Dell I/O Front Panel Test

To perform an I/O test on your front panel, remove the cable that runs from the front panel to the motherboard. You can unplug this on the motherboard side for easy access. Next, remove the CMOS battery.

If the system powers on, you have a bad I/O panel and it will need to be replaced. if it still doesn’t power up, you next need to troubleshoot the power supply itself, and then the motherboard last.

You can quickly test a power supply issue by jumping the power supply’s Power OK lead to a ground using a paper clip. The Power Ok lead will be the only green lead on the Power supply. You can also buy power supply testers from your local repair or electronics shop.

Category: Dell


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Dave has been providing free computer repair and tech support advice online since 2002. Join us on our forums and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for weekly tips and other helpful computer articles. Connect with me on: Google+

Comments (8)

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  1. lafcam says:

    but if i remove the i/o panel how can the computer start if the power on switch is on the panel and it was just disconected???

  2. mrsmoke says:

    I have the same question as above. No answer to first question posted four months ago. Is this a regular occurrence on this website? By powering on do you mean the AUX PWR LED on the mobo lighting up?

  3. Martha says:

    I have a Inspiron E1705, Intel Core Duo Dell Computer, I was gone for three weeks, my computer was not turned on during that time. I tried yesterday and this morning, on the light will blink and then go off. I have tried three times, I have unplugged everything, left unplugged for ten minutes. I tried again, with nothing again. My computer will not start up, what is my problem?

    • Dave Dave says:

      Press and hold the power button while it is unplugged for about thirty seconds. If it still will not start, make sure your computer is plugged directly into the wall (not a power strip). If that doesn’t work, you likely have a problem with either the power supply or motherboard and should have it serviced.

  4. khan says:

    i have dell gx280 and it starts normally but in few days it has a problem that it power light is blinking orange and i replace power supply and i do other ways to solve the problem but the problem is same so what can i do to make light apears solid green
    thanks in advance

  5. jr says:

    hey i have a dimension and i have an orange flashing light and there’s nothing that comes on

    • Dave Dave says:

      Sounds like standby more. Try tapping keys on the keyboard or hold in the power button to shut the system down, then power it back up.