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PC case switch...

Community Veteran
Posts: 14,345
Thanks: 685
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

PC case switch...

Hi
I've recently acquired (thanks to my local freecycle scheme) a rather nice full size ATX case which stands 2 feet tall from the floor. I'd like to make this my new web/file/print server.
I've managed to dremil the motherboard plate as the old mobo was prehistoric. I've made the holes, fitted some mountings and got the board fitted snugly etc. The PSU is also in with no problems.
Now this is the bit I've got a problem with: The old power switch is a click on, click off type. What do I do with that? Can I just hook it up to my mobo and click on click off to start the system or what?
Apart from that one issue, I can finish this system today and have it up and running. Obviously though because the front panel is a swine to remove I'd prefer to only need to put it back on once - with a nice working switch!
Thanks
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
7 REPLIES
alanb
Grafter
Posts: 459
Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: PC case switch...

Beware, are you sure that it is an ATX PSU?
Given that you've had to modify the case to make at ATX board fit, it sounds like you may either have a non-standard case and PSU, or possibly an AT PSU and AT case if it's really ancient. The AT standard preceeded the ATX standard and they are not compatible.
The on/off switching of an ATX PSU is handled by a sense wire that connects to the motherboard. An AT PSU does not have this, it has a hard switch instead, somewhat similar to your description.
It would be worth checking that PSU for part numbers and a label describing it's type and then do a google for specifications first.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,345
Thanks: 685
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: PC case switch...

I binned the old PSU and fitted a normal ATX PSU into the case. The old one was a dinosaur with just 100W output max. Obviously that isn't going to do me any good. It probably is an old AT case or something - I've no idea but it has lots of drive space, the case is big (more air circulation) and there is plenty of space for modifications.
What I'd like to know is can I simply connect the DPDT switch to the mobo's 2 pins and click on, click off to start up?
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
alanb
Grafter
Posts: 459
Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: PC case switch...

Ah, now I see what you want to do. ATX cases use a momentary switch. Bear in mind that if you hold an ATX power switch closed for three or four seconds it usually halts, suspends or reboots the machine. It shouldn't do any harm if you use the old case switch but you'll need to click it on, and then quickly click it off again, to work properly.
The halt, suspend or reboot modes are usually selected in a bios option, so you might have some sort of 'do nothing' option in there (unlikely though to be honest).
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,345
Thanks: 685
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: PC case switch...

Cheers - I'll do that then - it will save me trying to hack up something... although it would be nice just to have a simple push button instead of on/off to start it... I know it'll confuse me at some point..
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
alanb
Grafter
Posts: 459
Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: PC case switch...

You almost certainly will get confused or forget. Many years ago during the transition from the AT to the ATX standards I had something similar and I occasionally forgot to click the switch open, as it happened, my motherboard didn't seem to care if the switch was left closed, it just ignored it, but the machine would not shutdown while the switch was closed.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,574
Thanks: 3
Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: PC case switch...

The switches you are talking about used to switch mains voltage and often not insulated and you would get electrocuted putting your hand inside the case I know I have done it.
A better option is to use the reset switch as the power switch on a modern MB as that is a quick on/off and would work like a normal power button.
Note cases are made for a certain sort of MB and changing it to fit another type is fraught with problems. Old cases for AT computers didn't need lots of cooling and as such the case isnt designed to cool a cpu as really old pc's didnt even have a fan.
So putting a new cpu/MB in you may not be able to get enough air through to cool the cpu or the HD
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,345
Thanks: 685
Fixes: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: PC case switch...

There is a wacking great hole at the back where I had to cut out space with a rotary tool for the mobo connectors. It's a massive great square hole so I should think air will get around. I've also got a few spare fans knocking around so I'll monitor the processor hear once its up and running and see what happens.
Cheers for the advice... I'm on the hunt for a push switch to fit into the old switch position...
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!