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New Contributor I
983 Views

NUC6i3SY wont' boot. Seeking diagnostic advice.

This unit has been working fine for many months running Windows 10.

Today it started a Win 10 update and never recovered.

I left the update running and when I returned the unit was powered off.

Here are the symptoms:

If I press the power button, the blue light comes on and stays steady. The fan runs. But nothing appears on the attached monitor.

Using the keyboard has no effect.

If I press the power button again the unit powers off.

I have changed the monitor and used both NUC standard and mini HDMI video outputs but still nothing ever appears on the monitor.

I have tried holding the power button in for several seconds. If I do that the blue light comes on for 3 seconds and then goes off again.

While experimenting earlier with power on/off, I did see an orange light come on briefly, but this is no longer happening.

I really would appreciate any suggestions for further diagnosis.

Pop.

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Community Manager
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Hello popmorgan,

My apologies for the inconvenience.

I would like to know if there is you have the chance to test a different hard drive with your Intel® NUC. I believe that the update corrupted the operating system partition, and testing a different hard drive will help to rule this possibility.

Regards,

Amy C.

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Super User
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Hi Pop

In order to fix your Windows 10 installation follow the following steps:

1. Prepare USB with Windows 10 (if don't have one already) using Microsoft Media Creation Tool:https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10 Download Windows 10

2. Insert the USB with Windows 10 installation media into USB socket and power on your NUC. The version of the USB shall be similar to the installed one (i.e. HOME or Pro).

3. When you F2,F7,F10 menu appears, press F10 to enter boot menu.

4. Put the cursor on UEFI USB with your Windows installation and press ENTER.

5. Continue according to instruction on monitor. When you will see INSTALL, press on Repair ... in the bottom left corner and follow the instructions.

Leon

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New Contributor I
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Thanks you for your interest.

The 'hard drive' is actually an SSD.

Even if it is corrupted, should I not still be able to access the BIOS? I assume it is not on the SSD?

I have also tried inserting a bootable USB stick in the hope it might boot from that. But no luck.

Just for accuracy, there is also a 'hard disk installed but contains only data.

Pop

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New Contributor I
18 Views

Thank you for those suggestions.

That was my plan. I have a Win 10 boot USB.

But I am getting no BIOS menu on the monitor.

Pop.

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Community Manager
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Trying a different SSD will help to rule out some possibilities of course if that is an option for you. You may also try running the Intel® NUC without the SSD and run a BIOS recovery.

BIOS Recovery Update Instructions for Intel® NUC: https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/000005532.html BIOS Recovery Update Instructions for Intel® NUC

BIOS version 0061: https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/26841/BIOS-Update-SYSKLi35-86A-?product=89186 Download BIOS Update [SYSKLi35.86A]

Regards,

Amy C.

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Super User
18 Views

Hi Pop,

I just realized that you have not any video output. This wasn't clear for me in the first post. You are right, software update (in your case O.S. update) shall not affect your ability to enter BIOS. Actually you shall be able to enter bios and see bios display without SSD installed. You need for this only RAM. So in this situation I'll continue as follows:

1. First check if there is no failure in RAM. Try using just one memory module at a time, swapping it between the upper and lower memory slots.

2. If failure persists, disconnect CMOS battery for 15 minutes or more (yes so long) and reconnect it again. This battery is located on the board upper site. In order to reach this battery connector you have to remove the board from the NUC case. You need to unscrew some screws to be able remove the board.

Leon

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New Contributor I
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Leon and Amy C,

Really do appreciate your joint help. They are excellent suggestions.

It's getting late here in Ireland so it will be tomorrow before I can resume recovery efforts.

I will update the incident when I make some progress tomorrow.

Thank you again

Pop.

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Community Manager
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Keep us posted Pop.

Regards,

Amy C.

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Super User Retired Employee
18 Views

Amy and Leon have the jist of it, but let me reiterate:

  1. Unplug NUC from wall completely. Hold power button for 10 seconds (this flushes power from all caps). Plug back in and power on. See if you can now enter BIOS Setup (or boot).
  2. If Step1 didn't work, you next want to try doing BIOS Recovery. You will need to download the latest available BIOS (in .BIO file form), place it into the root folder of USB flash drive that has been formatted using the FAT32 file system and then initiate the BIOS Recovery process per the instructions here: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/000005532.html?wapkw=bios+recovery Intel NUC BIOS Recovery Update Instructions.
  3. Next is to try a CMOS clear. You can attempt the soft clear operation documented here: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/000005805.html Intel NUC Clearing CMOS. If this doesn't work, then a hard clear will be necessary. As Leon said, disconnect NUC from wall completely and unplug its CR2032 battery for 15 minutes. You have to remove two screws holding board down and then flip board up and out to access the battery's cable.

Hope this helps,

...S

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New Contributor I
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Thanks.

Got it!!

Pop

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New Contributor I
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OK, gave it another hour with these results:

Using Method 1 of the 3 options from Scott:

On just one occasion, with only a monitor connected, the BIOS menu appeared. But without a mouse/kbd, I had to try it again with both of them connected.

I failed to reproduce the one good boot. I tried again with only a monitor connected and still nothing. I repeated this many times without any single other BIOS menu appearing.

Using Method 2:

If the power button is held in for nearly 3 seconds, the unit powers down again. The blue power light lasts just about 2/3 seconds. Nothing on the monitor.

Using Method 3A

Same as for 2 above, holding the power button for 3 secs causes power down again after 3 secs.

Method 3B

That's definitely for tomorrow!!!

Pop

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Super User Retired Employee
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If you hold down the power button and it powers off again, it usually means that you held it down for 4 seconds. You need to hold it down for only 3 seconds.

If, on the other hand, you hold down the power button for 3 seconds and the NUC sits there for some amount of time and then powers down, something more drastic is wrong. In this case, the first thing I would check is to see whether there is an issue with the DRAM. Watch the power LED to see if it flashes immediately after you power on (see here for more information: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/intel-nuc-boards/000005854.html?wapkw... Intel NUC Blink Codes and Beep Codes). If there doesn't appear to be a DRAM issue, I would move on to the CMOS clear (Method 3B)...

Hope this helps,

...S

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New Contributor I
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It makes no sense!! I hate these types of problems.

I moved on to Method 3B and removed the battery for an hour.

I rebuilt the unit and the results were unchanged

Press power button and it appears to start fine - blue light on but nothing on the monitor.

Hold the power button down for 3 seconds, release it and the results the same. (yes, hold it for 4 seconds and it powers off again)

THEN

On a random three out of about 40 attempts, the BIOS menu appeared. I had installed a .bio file on a memory stick and on the first occasion tried F4. Nothing.

When the menu appeared again later, I pressed F7 and still nothing. Blue power light just remains on.

About an hour later the menu appeared for a third time and I pressed ESC to resume normal operations.

Up came Windows and completed its upgrade and the unit is now working flawlessly. Back on the internet, browsing and doing emails. Great.

BUT!!

What to do now? Will I try a restart? Try shutdown.? Should I try update the BIOS? (never updated since purchase in July last year)

Something in the BOOT/BIOS area is flaky!! Battery?

Still under warranty but major hassle to return it.

Pop

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Super User Retired Employee
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My personal opinion: You should be checking for updated BIOS releases on a regular basis (perhaps once a month). If a newer BIOS is available, install it immediately!

I am a retired software engineer. I worked in the field for 35 years; the last 21 years of that with Intel. Most of my time there was spent working on software applications and BIOS features for Intel Desktop Boards and (later) the Intel NUC and Compute Stick products (give or take time spent developing Intel Management Engine firmware and designing Management ASICs). Bottom line, I know what I am talking about (well, within my fields of expertise). I do not accept all this prattle about only updating your BIOS if you know an issue is affecting your PC's operation. BIOS issues can manifest in very subtle and often non-intuitive ways. Looking at BIOS release notes - which are, unfortunately, written by software engineers for software engineers and often by software engineers whose first language is not english - the average person is not going to recognize whether or not a particular BIOS update contains fixes that (might) apply to them. Developing, validating and releasing a BIOS update costs Intel a good chunk of money; they are not going to do so if it isn't absolutely necessary. Bottom line, I believe that you should always assume that every update applies to you and you should always install it. While it is true that the odd person has found that a newer BIOS exhibits a new or different issue, this is a very rare occurrence and is something that Intel works hard to avoid it occurring.

...S

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New Contributor I
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OK, I hear you!! With that experience, you are the man.

I was brought up to believe "if it ain't broke, . . . . .".

Guess I'll have to face up to a restart/reboot. Have also downloaded a bunch of new drivers.

Not looking forward to it!!

Pop

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Super User
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Since the F7 and F4 method didn't work in your case I'll advice you to recover your bios using "bios security jumper removed" method. Recover your bios is advised since your existing bios is an old version bios. How to execute such recovery is described in the same link Scott already has given: https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/000005532.html?wapkw=bios+recovery BIOS Recovery Update Instructions for Intel® NUC

Regards

Leon

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New Contributor I
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Finally some success.

After several attempts at using the "F4 Method", it actually worked and updated the BIOS

The unit appears now to be functioning correctly.

I am still very uncomfortable with the whole process.

At one point I plugged in a headset and heard 3 beeps when I powered on.

I could not repeat this but 3 beeps points to memory.

There's just a single 4GB DDR4 installed.

I am aware that the issue of memory was mentioned earlier in the thread but I had no way to test a single unit.

I fear I have not heard the end of of this problem!!

Thank you both (lw1948 & N Scott P) again for your interest and attention.

Pop.

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Super User Retired Employee
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Oh, don't get me wrong, I normally stick to the "If it ain't broke..." credo. My point here is that you might not know that you are broke (or that your broke is actually fixed).

...S

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Super User
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It is not my intention to argue with you or with Scott in this discussion. I'm also retires software engineer. My experience is not from PC field rather Real Time computers used in Avionics systems. Still in my long experience once a problem is discovered, it is not fixed by him self. The problem is hidden and probably will occur again. To fix an intermitted failure is always difficult. You can wait till occur again or try to find it. For example try to perform some memory test with http://www.memtest86.com/download.htm MemTest86 - Download now! . You can also test your NUC with Intel utility: https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/19792/Intel-Processor-Diagnostic-Tool Download Intel® Processor Diagnostic Tool

Regards

Leon

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