Core i7 failure

Well, there's a first time for everything.  Actually had a CPU go bad on me.  Thought it was mobo for quite some time, didn't even consider CPU failure as an option.  Thank the Lord I had the spare lab box with another Core i7.  Little upgrade I guess...i7-920 to -950.  However, the CPU has a code that indicates 2008 manufacture, so might be out of warranty.

I'll be calling Intel tomorrow, so praying it'll be covered.  If cheap to replace!

For anyone interested, the symptoms of the failed CPU are just this: System will no longer post, or show any video.  For all appearances it looks like a dead motherboard, or perhaps dead PSU.

update: Ah, was purchased in July 2009, so should be okay.

Constructive update:

Decided to post my troubleshooting process just in case someone isn't sure:
  1. System BSOD'd.
  2. I noted the BSOD error and codes via photograph, just in case they would help.  No drivers were mentioned in the BSOD, so chances are it's hardware.
  3. Once the memory dump completed (12GB of RAM takes a bit to dump), I reset the computer using the reset button.
  4. The PC would no longer boot - no video; monitors went into powersave, but still indicated they were connected.
  5. Immediately guessed motherboard was the issue, proceeded to colour my investigation with that assumption.
  6. Disconnected power and removed the SAS card, tried booting again.  Same symptoms.
  7. Disconnected power and removed all PCI cards (NIC, GPU, SAS), tried booting again.  Same symptoms.
  8. Got frustrated.
  9. Disconnected power and removed all RAM sticks, SATA cables, changed out GPU for a known good GPU, tried booting again.  Same symptoms.
  10. Disconnected power and removed motherboard/CPU/HSF from case, attached to another power supply from another system (PSU known good), tried booting again. Same symptoms.
  11. Srsly.  What.
  12. ...
  13. Ok, maybe CPU is bad.  Hahaha, silly notion.
  14. Took 'spare' CPU from lab server and swapped it out, installed Intel OEM cooler for ease of use, tried booting using the known good PSU.  System boots.
  15. So a different CPU on the same motherboard allows me to boot.  Therefore, the CPU is preventing the computer from booting (POSTing).
  16. Contact Intel for warranty replacement.  (which was handled like a consummate professional should - you go Intel)
  17. It arrives the next day.  Send bad one back to complete warranty.
  18. Put replacement 920 into lab server because the 950 is prettier in my PC anyways.


  1. I had this happen a few years ago as well. Same symptoms, and I never would have guessed it was the CPU until I replaced the mainboard and the problem was still there :)

  2. Haha, yeah, wow...I was floored when I came to that realization.

    In related news, Intel's support chat guy was awesome. They have two options for warranty, once you get done with the preliminaries. One, you send it back and they send you a replacement. Since I don't have any CPU shipping stuff (and I'm particular about that kind of thing) I opted for option 2: They send me a replacement CPU with shipping label and I send it back.

    Very pleased with Intel's warranty, will continue my habit of purchasing Intel CPUs in future.


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