e260 v1 boots to blue ring only

We were given a Sansa e260 v1 player and have used it for several months.  This morning when booting, got the blue ring lighting up, but the screen remains black.  Turned the unit off by popping the battery, replaced the battery, moved the hold slider to orange, held the record button while plugging into the USB cord in an attempt to enter recovery mode (with My Computer window open)  Got 3 rapid tones, the blue ring lit, but never got the 16MB format icon in My Computer.  Suggestions?   Thanks!

The v1 e200 series has a few unique characteristics, a PortalPlayer processor with recovery mode, and memory mounted in a removable module.

It sounds like your device is not booting.  No worries, if you are patient and willing to work with linux there is a handy tutorial on how to use e200tool to recover the base platform on your e200.

Before we venture forth, there may be a far simpler problem: the memory module.  The latest version of the e200 used a different processor, and soldered in place memory devices.  The e200 was designed for servicing in the field, with a removable metal back plate and battery module.  Reminds me of the days of the big console TVs, with replaceable vacuum tubes you could pick up at the local grocery store.

Before attempting a full recovery, try removing the back plate (don’t lose the screws!) with a Philips #00 screwdriver, one of the little guys used for tightening eyeglass hinges.  Underneath, you will see tha battery module, and above it, a large black rectangular area.  To the side is a grey foam block.  This normally holds the board pressed against the main circuit board.  Give it a gentle press downward, and see if the module clicks into position.  This often solves the problem.  The firmware, or operating system for the processor, is stored in that memory module.  If it isn’t making contact, you’ll get a blue ring, and nothing else.

If this doesn’t work, there is a handy web page with cool pictures of the process here. Note that it’s from back in 2008, several years ago.  The e200 has to be, arguably the toughest machine built of the Sansa line.  It’s also repairable.  For the process, the hardest part is starting with a linux platform, but this is simpler than you may think- all you need is a “live CD” that you can temporarily boot from using your PC.  You’ll be working in linux for the repair, running from the CD (yes, it is also possible to use flash memory, you can boot from USB or a built in SD card if desired).  Afterwards, simply remoce the CD and restart Windows.

Bob  :smileyvery-happy: