I'd start with the memory, make sure it's seated firmly. If it's not onboard video do the same for the vid card. After that start running memory diagnostics etc.
I'll check to see if they are seated properly. It does have a video card.
Here's a list
of HP beep codes.
The only one I could see that's close to what you're describing doesn't sound good.
Knowing what kind of BIOS might be helpful, though I'm going to go ahead and guess it's an Award BIOS, because that's the only type that has a 'continuous beeping' option.
Thanks for finding that HP link. I had looked at it before and didn't notice the listing you found. CPU overheating sounds bad - but is it possible if the machine has been sitting there cold?
I'd suggest putting in one stick of memory in bank 0 (first bank) and powering it on.
Based on success/fail, try the other memory stick.
Sounds like memory problems.
If it boots, run Memtest86+
on it. You can either download a bootable CD, or just boot with a Kubuntu install DVD (which has it on it). Both are free; the Kubuntu will let you run the OS from CD so you can disconnect the HDD if you wanted to.
Thanks for the tip on the memory in bank 0. I didn't know if memory had to be paired.
It would be great if the problem was memory - he could just replace it.
Also, glad to know about Kubuntu having memtest and the ability to run without the HDD.
Thanks everyone. When he gets here, I'll check in here again and report on our progress.