Why does my computer not work?

Updated: 08/03/2018 by Computer Hope

There are hundreds of different reasons a computer may not work. Before trying to fix a non-working computer, you must first identify what part of the computer is causing it not to work. Below are the steps to help fix your computer with links to related pages that will help fix a specific type of computer problem. Although some of these steps may seem too basic it is important you review all of these sections to help correctly identify the problem.

Is the computer getting power?

When looking at the front of the computer do you see any lights? Are the fans moving and blowing air from the computer? If there are no lights, moving fans, or it appears the computer is not turning on it has a power related problem. See the steps below for all power related troubleshooting steps.

Is anything seen on the screen?

If there are power lights on the computer, fans are moving, or it appears the computer is turning on but does not show anything on the screen you may have a display problem.

The computer is getting an error message

If you're getting any error messages, write down the error and search for that error message. Computer Hope and millions of other Internet sites have documents relating to error messages with the steps that can be followed to fix those error messages.

The computer keyboard or mouse are not working

If the computer seems to be working fine but the keyboard or mouse are not working you'll be unable to do anything with the computer with no input device.

The computer was working fine but now is acting strange

If the computer is acting strange, frozen, or encountering errors and can boot, reboot the computer. Often rebooting the computer can solve many computer issues.

Tip: If you cannot restart the computer because it is frozen or the keyboard and mouse are not working, your only option is to press and hold down the power button for a few seconds until the computer turns off. Once the computer is off, you can turn the computer back on to restart the computer.

Tip: If your computer has a blue screen or has another error screen, try the Ctrl+Alt+Del method of rebooting.