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Warning! CPU has been changed

Andy Spragg

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I have just moved house and transplanted my PC. When I hooked it all back together again, at first there was no signal to the monitor. I fiddled with some cableage, rebooted and tried again. Second time, all seemed briefly to be OK again, but machine had only just started to boot when up popped the following message:

Warning! CPU has been changed. Please re-enter CPU settings in the CMOS setup and remember to save before quit!

with choices to continue or go into setup. So obviously I ignored the message and continued :lol: Machine booted normally except that it had lost time and date. I put that right and on the three or four boots since, I have always still had the boot time message but the correct time and date have been retained.

Second time, I went into the CMOS setup to see if I could spot what setting it was that had somehow been changed, but I couldn't see anything amiss.

In the sense that the PC appears to be booting normally, if I ignore the message ... no worries. But obviously I'd like to know what went wrong and how to put it right. I'd appreciate any advice from wiser folk than me. TIA, Andy

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sounds like the cmos backup battery needs to be changed ...

it looks like a shiny new quarter in a holder on the motherboard .

make note of which way the cell is inserted (one side is solid) there should be a small spring tab holding it in place ... depress this and the cell will pop out .

you may have a "slip-in" vertical holder ... it will be easy enough to figure out .

take the cell and yourself to the nearest drugstore (or elsewhere) and purchase a new one .

install the new cell , reset what you need to in bios , save it and keep going .

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But obviously I'd like to know what went wrong and how to put it right. I'd appreciate any advice from wiser folk than me. TIA, Andy
Something in the move altered an item - I would go with the CMOS battery first , reset time again , check startup services , then see ,,,,,,,

May be nothing serious (do all updates etc and check System for drivers) - Also do a M/$oft check for updates -

From memory XP unit , so the battery needs a change by now , and maybe a good dusting after the shake up -

TaKe it esy -

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Hi folks, thank you for all three replies. I been busy unpacking and sorting stuffs out for the last couple of days ...

Computer was unplugged for two days. Never normally switched off for more than 24 hours. Seems most likely to be the battery then - either it got temporarily dislodged, or is running low (seems implausible that it should coincide with moving house though). Had a feeling it might be battery-related, ISTR I have been here or somewhere like it before.

I don't understand what basis the machine has for asserting that the settings have changed. I see in the BIOS there is an option to reset to defaults, either failsafe or optimized. Is it comparing to one of those default value sets?

I have no idea what the settings were before, so if they have changed, I have no idea which ones or what from, so I can't set them back again. But machine is obviously OK if I just change nothing at boot time. It will just keep prompting me that the CMOS settings have changed. Can I ask two specific questions please:

- If I go into CMOS settings, change nothing, and Save and Exit, will that make the boot-time message go away even though I haven't changed anything?

- if I change the battery, will machine lose all CMOS settings so I will have to reset to a default state?

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Hi Andy! Long time no see! :lol: A System Restore will put your system back to a prior date. If its only been going on a few days? "CPU has been changed" is something I've never seen yet.... so I would get another post & see what they think also... cheers

EDIT I have two working pc's from 2003, never changed the cmos backup battery --- yet!

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Hi Andy -

You can check if there are restore points still there (as from yardbird) but when they shut down for a couple of days and get transported anything can happen -

If you still have a manual (or can Google one) it will show default settings -

Please re-enter CPU settings in the CMOS setup and remember to save before quit!

This line seems to mean check , or at least enter BIOS settings > back to default and Save > Exit -

Thanks -

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yeppers ... if you get the same message every time you re-start the machine (especially if it has been down for a couple of hours) ... the lithium backup battery is pretty flat .

this will not change no matter how many times you reset and "save" the bios settings .

the backup battery is like "life support" for a person ... it keeps the cmos (where the bios/info/settings are kept) from going brain-dead when the main power is removed .

this is akin to what happens in digital clocks when the power is removed .

the "modern" bios (just about every type within the last 15 years or so) has a "fail-safe" batch of settings that will automatically be loaded in order to get the machine running so that you can do something with it .

this is a lot better than years ago when if the bios got pooched you had to pull the bios chip and pop in a new one .

the chances of the backup battery getting dislodged in shipping are pretty small ... indeed , if the comp got rock-n-rolled enough to do this , you would not have to be concerned about replacing the battery , you would be sweeping up the pieces and looking for a new machine .

face it , they ship computers thousands of miles across the big pond , bounce them around on trucks (etc) before you set them up at home ... surely if the battery was going to shake loose it would have done so .

there is another difference between "now and then" ... some backup batteries , at one time , were rechargeable NiCd types ... thank god they got away from using them ! i have replaced many of them after repairing the damage to the main/motherboard in different types of electronic gear (not just comps) ... they leaked and had a limited life span .

the modern lithium coin cell is leaps and bounds ahead of the old stuff ... cheaper too ... about 2.50 USD in a hicksville drug store .

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