Question about Dell Dimension 4600 PC Desktop

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Chipset heatsink not detected

My Dell Dimension 4600 says that the chipset heatsink is not detected, and is halting the system. I've done a bit of research and now know that this is a common problem in 4600s, which makes me a little ticked at Dell because their support team has been less than helpful any time I've had an issue in the past, meaning that this time around I'm going to attempt to solve it myself. I've seen that most people have reported that their problems arose from the chipset heatsink not being attached, or issues with the wiring. When I opened it up to take a look, both components are attached and appear to be in working condition - i.e. they are identical to the diagrams I've found online.

This has happened to me once before - my system was installed in a very dusty area, so there was a ton of dust buildup inside the PC. I vacuumed it out and the problem went away. This seems to be the issue once again, as I did find some dust attached to the chipset heatsink when I opened it up this morning, but even after vacuuming it out, the message still appears.

Any other options, guys? Your help would be greatly appreciated. :]

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  • kseverance May 29, 2009

    Where can I find the BIOS overrides or updates? Is that available through the Dell product site, or is it from outside sites?

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If the PC is still under warranty, request an RMA. If not, you won't get any / much help from them anyway.

Check to see if there is a bios override for system allert messages, also check to see if there is a bios update that pertains to this particular issue, sometimes they do fix thier own mistakes.

Other than that, you may be borked. Componant level repair is not usualy the do it yourself type of task.

If all else fails, you may need to get a new motherboard. This isn't so bad though, a name brand aftermarket motherboard such as an asus board will more than likely be more stable and functional than the lowest bidder bulk buys that dell sells. these componants are usually rejected from the original manufacturer because of faults such as this.

If you do go with a new motherboard, be sure to check, re-check, and then check again that all of your componants are compatable.

(intel sells slimmed down / less effective first and second runs in bulk to dell, and compaq)

Posted on May 29, 2009

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