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BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

I recently bought a second hand BCM400 off of ebay. I expected it would just be good for spare parts - primarily to have a PSU and some of the modules, in case they go wrong on our production setup.

The unit was full of dust and muck, and initially it wouldn't boot to anything, purely just powering up. I gave it a really thorough clean out, and to my delight everything came to light. I was able to repeatedly fire up the unit, and boot into the OS 3.6 2.2c install I found operating on there (they hadn't changed the default ee_admin account, so that was a winner too for preserving licenses).

Suddenly yesterday, when I was working through the configuration in the Unified Manager (if that is what it's called?), it suddenly froze up. I had to power off, and on reboot I got no VGA out signal, and these 6 green LEDs just keep flashing on the front. This is from LED 3 to 8, looking at the block of LEDs on the front. I've read about the swollen capacitor issue on the mobo - these seem to be fine and are the blue ones, not the green and gold ones I've read about being trouble.

It's possible the HDD has gone wrong - I've removed this and connected to a IDE to USB convertor, and it's spinning up but not appearing under Windows. I used this same convertor previously to (thankfully) make an image state backup with Acronis True Image on my PC a couple of days back.

If it is the HDD, would this really stop the system from POSTing and showing the Nortel splash screen when the BIOS initialises? I'm under no dillusion that the BCM400 is essentially an IBM compatible PC running NT4 embedded with various interface add-ons, and I would have thought that it POSTed even if a HDD is absent, but perhaps I am naively wrong - am happy to be corrected! Otherwise, could the power / IDE daughterboard be a possible problem, as well as the motherboard itself?

I routing around for an old IDE HDD I can try testing with......

Any input massively valued smile Many thanks

RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

Sounds like the hard drive has bitten the dust. You should be able to read from the hard drive with a Windows PC unless it's a goner. If you connected a keyboard and mouse to the BCM, can you get into setup by pressing F2? As I recall the Nortel splash screen should appear even if the hard drive has gone bad.

Brian Cox
Georgia Telephone

RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

Hi Brian.

Thanks for your reply. Even drives I know to be good are not working with my IDE to USB adapter, so unhelpfully it looks like that might have had it too....

An interesting thing I have noticed though - even with the BCM400 firing up in terms of powering on, the hard drive is not spinning up. It is spinning up when plugged into another power source.

That's what I thought about the splash screen - and I'm getting nothing. No output at all via the VGA. When I first received the unit, this was also the case - but the clean-out of the unit resolved this. It would seem only for a few days though sad Even if the HDD is dead, I also would expect to see the POST / F2 splash screen, and I don't - there is just nothing. I note it used to do the PC style beep when booting up, and it doesn't any longer either.

So do you reckon the motherboard has had it? I could source another cheap BCM400 off of ebay and see if I could combine some parts - am I right in thinking a motherboard replacement shouldn't mess with the licenses in place? Is it just if I replace the media card (or whatever it is called in the PCI slot) that I might have issues with licensing and firmware, etc?

Many thanks,


RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

I'm suspecting a bad power supply if the hard drive doesn't spin up in the BCM. If the power supply is good, a base tray with the motherboard can be had pretty cheap these days. Licensing is tied to the MSC plugged into the PCI slot as it has the embedded system ID.

Brian Cox
Georgia Telephone

RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

Generally speaking, the BCM 400 can run without a hard drive but all IP functions won't work. You mentioned that the software version is 3.6 which will be Windows NT.

As for the hard disk not spinning, I've come across this issue before when hooking the disk onto a USB to IDE/SATA adapter. This is usually because the Power unit for the IDE drive isn't powerfull enough to spin the disk and you will be best to have it connected into the BCM and run it from there.

As exmogger has stated, connect up a serial port at 9600 baud with a null modem adapter and see if any output is present as well as hooking up a mouse, keyboard and monitor onto the ports behind the grey plastic on the front after removing two screws.

Yes, the BCM 200/400 and 1000 models were really just desktop computers and therefore treat fault finding in the same manner. If you have another hard disk with e.g. Windows on it, then see if that boots up OK.

Firebird Scrambler

Nortel & Avaya Meridian 1 / Succession & BCM / Norstar Programmer

Website =

RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

Hi guys - sorry for the very delayed reply on here. Our production BCM400 decided to go to the wall - thankfully, we still just about have support with BT, and they came in and fixed. This has made me more resolute to get things sorted, so we have redundancy. I've also taken an image state backup successfully now of the HDD in our production system.

I'll reply more in detail in due course - basically, I managed to get another cheap BCM400 unit off ebay, which seems to work and the VGA out, etc, is all good. Tomorrow, I plan to combine parts to rebuild - the base tray looks all good on this unit, no dodgy capacitors or anything. In fact, it looks like it has a newer production date associated, so that can only be a good thing smile

I'll keep you posted - thanks to all for your input smile

RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

Hi all.

I replaced the Base Tray, and all was good.

Hard drive was fine - as mentioned it was powering up fine with my external power adapter, but not appearing under Windows when trying to view on another system. I concluded that the USB to IDE adapter was a bit intermittent, and switched to an older (but more reliable) adapter and all was good.

I have other questions, but shall open a new post as this particular issue is all fixed - I'm confident it was a troublesome motherboard smile

Many thanks to you all.

RE: BCM400 won't POST and 6 green LEDs stay flashing (LED 3 - 8 on front)- no VGA output

Thanks for the update.


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