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 Post subject: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 11:15 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:04 am
Posts: 71
Location: Fairview, TN
I have a Windows 7 PC with a Pentium D @3.4 GHz., 4 GB of RAM, and 2 TB of hard disk space, plus a 600-watt power supply that's about 3 years old. The video card is an Nvidia GeForce GT240, with a Samsung 24-inch LED monitor using HDMI cables.

For the past few months, I have had intermittent instances where the computer will spontaneously shut off altogether or reboot. More recently, I have had a number of instances where the PC will simply freeze up for a minute or so and then continue right on as if nothing had happened--even if I'm defragging the hard drives (2 of them@1 TB each)!

I already have a Core 2 Duo @3 GHz. to replace the Pentium D, and I'm getting ready to replace the PSU with a larger one, most likely in the 750-watt range. Oh, and my motherboard is a Biostar G31-M7 TE socket 775, which will accommodate up to a Core 2 Quad CPU. Would replacing the CPU and the PSU solve the kinds of problems I've been having, or do I need to do something else? (I'm currently on government disability, and getting ready to go on Medicare, so my means are limited, to say the least!) Thanks in advance for any comments or suggestions!


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 3:19 pm 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
Posts: 5540
You don't need a larger PSU. You can go down to 500W if you need to. But my first gut feeling about the problem does think it's the PSU.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 3:41 pm 
Coppermine
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Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 4:40 pm
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I agree. My first inclination was the PSU could be failing...but the stalling isn't usually a symptom. Did you recently uninstall any programs, even mundane or benign ones, that you felt weren't necessary? It's possible that could cause the stalling. Also, are you getting a BSOD when the computer reboots? If so, you'll want to investigate the BSOD code as it may lead you to the culprit.

Since you are on limited funds, you need to be judicious when updating/upgrading/fixing computer problems. Before you start buying parts and swapping them out in hopes of resolving the issue, consider looking at buying some older, refurbished computers from a vendor like newegg or microcenter. I found a refurbished tower at my local microcenter (core 2 duo 3.0 GHz) for $140ish including taxes. At least it comes with a 30 day warranty.

Hope this helps.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Tue May 13, 2014 4:53 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:04 am
Posts: 71
Location: Fairview, TN
btdog wrote:
I agree. My first inclination was the PSU could be failing...but the stalling isn't usually a symptom. Did you recently uninstall any programs, even mundane or benign ones, that you felt weren't necessary? It's possible that could cause the stalling. Also, are you getting a BSOD when the computer reboots? If so, you'll want to investigate the BSOD code as it may lead you to the culprit.

Since you are on limited funds, you need to be judicious when updating/upgrading/fixing computer problems. Before you start buying parts and swapping them out in hopes of resolving the issue, consider looking at buying some older, refurbished computers from a vendor like newegg or microcenter. I found a refurbished tower at my local microcenter (core 2 duo 3.0 GHz) for $140ish including taxes. At least it comes with a 30 day warranty.

Hope this helps.


No, I'm not getting a BSOD at all. It just stops right in the middle of any given program's execution--even Control Panel! I've already checked both of my hard drives, and the SMART indicators show both of them as being in excellent shape. Thanks for the advice!


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 3:31 am 
[Team Member]
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When the pc stalls does the fan in the psu stop, does the fan in the cpu cooler stop or speed up? It should speed up, if it does the thermal compound may have dried out. Make sure there are no dirt bunnies in the cpu cooler blocking air flow from the fan.

When was the last time you remounted the cpu cooler and applied new thermal compound. This sounds like an old rig, so the compound may have dried up and is acting as an insulator....causing the pc to stall until the cpu cools back down. CPUs have a throttling feature built in to protect it from damage.

Nasty


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 4:29 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:04 am
Posts: 71
Location: Fairview, TN
Nastyman wrote:
When the pc stalls does the fan in the psu stop, does the fan in the cpu cooler stop or speed up? It should speed up, if it does the thermal compound may have dried out. Make sure there are no dirt bunnies in the cpu cooler blocking air flow from the fan.

When was the last time you remounted the cpu cooler and applied new thermal compound. This sounds like an old rig, so the compound may have dried up and is acting as an insulator....causing the pc to stall until the cpu cools back down. CPUs have a throttling feature built in to protect it from damage.

Nasty


The fan neither stops nor speeds up, even though I have SpeedFan installed. I have never remounted the CPU cooler as you describe. However, I have been planning to upgrade the CPU from a Pentium D to a Core 2 Duo, so now I have all the more reason to do so. Thanks for the suggestion!


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 5:37 am 
Team Member
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Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 12:09 pm
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Do you know what kind of PSU you currently have running? I had a 2004 Compaq that did random shutdowns after about 8 years. People told me the PSU was finally giving out. But you have a 3 year old PSU so I'm wondering about the quality of it.

And don't rush off to buy parts, considering your financial status.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 6:56 am 
Thunderbird
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GlamRockCowboy wrote:
.... I have been planning to upgrade the CPU from a Pentium D to a Core 2 Duo....

IF your MB supports the new CPU. There aren't that many chipsets that do and the Core 2 Duos were limited to the first generations typically if it came with a PenD. Further, if this is a major box maker's PC that will almost always severely limit your choices.

If it does support it the Core 2 Duo will be a big improvement. The PenD was a terrible CPU. The Core 2 Duo was a major kudo.

Still stop thinking about this UNTIL you solve the problem.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2014 8:51 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:04 am
Posts: 71
Location: Fairview, TN
FascistNation wrote:
GlamRockCowboy wrote:
.... I have been planning to upgrade the CPU from a Pentium D to a Core 2 Duo....

IF your MB supports the new CPU. There aren't that many chipsets that do and the Core 2 Duos were limited to the first generations typically if it came with a PenD. Further, if this is a major box maker's PC that will almost always severely limit your choices.

If it does support it the Core 2 Duo will be a big improvement. The PenD was a terrible CPU. The Core 2 Duo was a major kudo.

Still stop thinking about this UNTIL you solve the problem.


Biostar has a CPU support list for this motherboard, and I picked the CPU I 'm gonna swap out from that list. Since I don't yet have a replacement PSU, I'll try swapping out the CPU first. Meantime, I'll be looking for a new PSU.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2014 11:47 am 
Thunderbird
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
Excellent! Be sure to update the BIOS first if needed.

Though spending money on a broken system until you have it fixed makes no sense to me. What if it is something else and you can't get it economically fixed? Now you are stuck with a "new" CPU too.


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 Post subject: Re: Computer freeze-ups and reboots
PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2014 12:02 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2009 10:04 am
Posts: 71
Location: Fairview, TN
FascistNation wrote:
Excellent! Be sure to update the BIOS first if needed.

Though spending money on a broken system until you have it fixed makes no sense to me. What if it is something else and you can't get it economically fixed? Now you are stuck with a "new" CPU too.


I already have the CPU in hand! It is one of three I bought online several years ago as a precaution. The BIOS is as up-to-date as it's liable to get, given the vintage of the motherboard. I WILL double-check, though, just to be sure.


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