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 Post subject: Computer Randomly restarting.. Big topic,few answers online
PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 10:12 pm 
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Recently I have been getting this problem that my computer will randomly restart ( Today it has done so about 15 times) First my computer is a year old, a little more. I have an a7n8x deluxe motherboard, xp 2100 cpu, thermolake cooling, 4 case fans, 12 gig western digital hard drive, 80 gig segate barracuda hard drive (7200 rpm), 2x 256 sticks of GEIL ddr 400 ram, Geforce 4 ti 4200 video card 64 ddr ram, 350 watt power supply, lite on burner 48x24x48, and dvd rom drive. Up till now the computer has been great. Before my computer has been restarting it was my ram that went bad, i kept getting BSODs pertaining to memory dumping onto the hard disk. So i got PNY ddr 333 ram and i am currently using that now. Around that time is when my computer was randomly restarting, i do not think its the new ram because it had restarted before that a few times / rarely, but now instead of BSODs, it restarts. I dont think its the ram because i put the old chips in and it restarted randomly, before BSOD. I also have reformatted my computer to make sure that wasnt the issue, but it resarted randomly when i was reformatting!!! So then i checked to see if there wasnt enough power getting to all the hardware, so i disconnected a cd-rom drive and that somewhat worked, but still the computer randomly restarted. So then i turned off the on critcal error -> restart check box in the my computer properties. That didnt work either. So now, im stuck. I have no idea why my computer is doing this, it never has before. I used to also keep my computer on 24 / 7 because i used it to host my websites. But thats about it. Some words of wisdom would be apprecieated :) . Thx - Rohin Kasudia

Also, i have windows Xp pro --- could it be that?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 10:52 pm 
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do u have any Temp or PSU monitoring software installed?


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 11:40 pm 
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Hmm could be possibly blaster worm? Did you patch your copy of XP to the fullest?

Also, check your temps. Report back to us how hot the CPU/Case is.

Plus what brand of PSU is it you have? cHeapo?

Anyways, gointo the BIOS and check the voltages. Are they fluctuating alot? like your 5volt line at 4.75? or something of the lines of it.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 12:36 am 
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I dont have psu / monitoring software installed, i might have it on my asus cd rom, i could check it out. I never installed it before and i had no problems. The cpu is like 100 roughly degrees fareignheight. The PSU manufacturer is some TURBOLINK, ehhh, cheapo? I hadnt had anyproblems with it till like a week ago. Also, i cant technically update my version of windows " " . That hasnt given me problems though, plus i just reformatted the other night.

The voltage thing, well i dunno truly what your asking me to do. I never messed with the voltage setting, im kinda scared to do so. If you tell me what to do then ill do it, i trust you know what your talking about.

I just did a virus scan (trend micro) and it came up negative on viruses. I doubt its. Usually you get that rpc restart error, but i shut that off from the service menu in control panel.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 12:50 am 
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i was mentioning the software because sometimes it will reboot your system if it over heats or if the PSU spikes or drops too much. but since u have a generic PSU, this may be the culprit, but u would have to have some way to monitor it to see if that is the problem. but if u have a generic PSU, i would get a new 1 anyways.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 12:51 am 
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Actually i figuered out that voltage stuff, i just looking at the bios and i figuered this is what you wanted to know.

MB TEMP = 36 C / 96 F
CPU TEMP = 54 C / 129 F
VCORE volt = 1.63 volts
+3V voltage = 3.24 - 3.26 volts
+5V Voltage = 4.86 volts
+12V Voltage = 12.44 volts
Cpu Fan speed 4166 RPMS


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 12:53 am 
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What power supply should i get then, im not a big fan of spending money on my computer a lot par se, i just spent 70 bucks to get more ram because the old one went bunk. If i have to get a new powersupply then i guess i might have to :(

Note: Should i stick with a 350 watt PSU / go higher? I figuere for what i go the 350 watt should do it, not sure however...


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 2:29 am 
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The problem could quite possibly be your CPU temperature tho, 54C is pretty damn high for just sitting in BIOS. Mine's running at 40C/104F, it's an AMD Thunderbird 1.4GHz (1 of the hottest chips out there), and im running Folding @ Home. This is looking like your most likely problem. Is your computer extremely dusty inside, or have any of your fans stopped working?

http://pcpowerandcooling.com - u can go there for a new PSU, altho that isnt looking like the problem now, but you cant really expect generic PSUs to last a very long time, sometimes u get lucky tho.

a good 350 watt should be good for what you have, altho, more never hurts.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 6:42 am 
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Highly likely (as mentioned above) that your culprit is heat. 54C at idle is on the high side of stable. Check in your BIOS what the maximum is set at before it reboots, and I bet you're hitting that temp in this summer weather.

I really advise removing your heatsink, cleaning it and your CPU, applying some thermal compount (AS5 preferred), and reattaching. Also, check the specs of your heatsink to make sure it's rated for your CPU speed.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 9:24 am 
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If i invested in water cooling, you thin that would solve my problems? Also maybe putting a ram heatsink on my DDR 333 stick? I mean ithought my cpu temp was NOrmal but i guess not.

Also, what kinda water cooling system should i get? Compusa or online?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 9:48 am 
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Forgot to add, my computer isnt really that dusty inside, i could try cleaning the cpu fan. Im kinda scared to take it off though and put more thermal compound on...


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 9:58 am 
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Water cooling is a needless expense to solve this problem. Three reasons off the top of my head to consider water cooling are:

1) Heavy overclocking
2) Cut down on PC noise
3) Fun factor, try something new

Done properly, it would definitely (note that it is spelled correctly) solve your CPU heating problem, but the cost doesn't make it a sensible option if that's you're goal. As well, adding heatsinks to your RAM is not a bad thing, but it isn't going to help your CPU temps.

rkasudia wrote:
Im kinda scared to take it off though and put more thermal compound on...


Do have any techy friendly friends? If so, have them help and/or guide you through it. If my suspicions are correct, cleaning and reapplying paste and/or replacing your heatsink with a better one are really the only options here. It's also less involved than water cooling as you've considered. Finally, it would serve as a good learning experience. :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 10:28 am 
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Hmm alright, ill take that approach then. Getting a better cooling fan. Could you give me some tips though before i do take it off and what not. I figuere i can do it because ive done just about everything else fixing computers and what not.

Also, when i unscrew the headsink, does it just pop off the cpu? And when i put new compound , how do i take off the old stuff?


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 4:46 pm 
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Okay, let me throw a few links your way. First off, my current favorite HSF is the CNPS7000-CU (by Zalman). You must make sure it is compatible with your motherboard, however, as it is large. According to below, it should be as long as your power supply doesn't interfere. Upon Googling, it appears others w/ your mobo have installed it w/ no trouble:

Compatibility Chart

As for removing your heatsink, I like to clean the CPU with 91% isopropyl alcohol and q-tips. I basically scrub and buff until the q-tips remain white. Then, once dry, apply a small amount of arctic silver 5 or similar thermal paste. Instructions can be read here (a small, thin layer is key):

AS5 Installation Instructions

Now, attach the new heatsink/fan combo. In this case, hopefully you've gone w/ the Zalman. Here's a nice little animated cartoon instructional video clip:

HSF Installation Instructions

And FINALLY, go here to get the CNPS7000-CU:

Buy Zalman CNPS7000-CU


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 11:49 pm 
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I think this might be a better reason why my computer keeps restarting. I think my video card is bad.... I did fail to mention previously that the cooling on my 4200 (the fan) has not been working. I have been using the system with with that video card for about 6 months. When i put my old tnt 2 in the computer, it doesnt restart, but it sometimes hangs after a while. Like a couple hours, which is a lot longer than when i had the 4200. So now im with the dilema of not whether my cpu cooling is busted but rather why is / potentially why is my video card messing up my system...

Any thoughts???


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 11:53 pm 
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if the cooling on your video card isnt working, it's very likely that could be overheating, causing it to mess up, but even if that is the problem, i would still look into better cooling for your CPU.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 11:53 pm 
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My thought is to get that CPU temp under control so you're not idling at 54C.

As for the video card, it could be a culprit, though you're still getting system instability after switching (computer hanging).


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2004 12:41 am 
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rkasudia wrote:
I have been using the system with [the 4200 with problimatic fan] video card for about 6 months.

With the same spuratic problem, or 6 months pretty normal until recenly?

rkasudia wrote:
When i put my old tnt 2 in the computer, it doesnt restart, but it sometimes hangs after a while.

There's a huge chance that you're bringing to light two trouble spots. By pulling the 4200, you obviously rule that one out, but the hang of the TNT could be a totally different problem brought on by the "new" card. Does the BIOS list the AGP voltage?

Which also brings up the video card. Isn't the TNT2 card a 3.3v card? I have no idea how it's running in a 1.5v slot but... The 4200 is probably 3.0, but I'm just a bit confused, so I'll drop it on my end. Read this over and double/triple check your video card and if it's supposed to be in that motherboard. I'm not looking up the info now...I've got lots to write!
http://www.neoseeker.com/Hardware/faqs/kb/10,63.html


Quote:
So now im with the dilema of not whether my cpu cooling is busted but rather...why is my video card messing up my system...

That baby's not off the hook yet. Again, maybe you have several probablamtic items here. Hey, it happens. (Example - What if: the cpu is hot. The 4200 is hot. Them together get's it really hot because they're close together. Adding in the TNT2 card is a bit cooler so it doesn't effect the system as quickly) Not that it IS tin this case, but you can't rule it out so quickly.

(FYI: 54ºC=129.2ºF) The T-bird's were hot, so you are going to have to live being a bit hot. Normally I believe these were comfortable in the 40ºC range (104-120ºF) with normal idles at 34ºC.

I really don't think it's the CPU at this current point in the description of the problem. I, However, don't think it's the card(s) either...well, not directly. So where does that leave us? Hahaha...not very far IMO:D Read on...

Wiseoracle was thinking the same thing I was, then I look over your post with your voltages and you know what stands out? vCore. That's what your cpu lives on. The correct voltage you should see here at default is 1.75v. Anything lower than default will give you instablity...If your BIOS is already set with the vCore setting at "Default", see if you can modify it (like "by user"). Go up a notch and reboot into the bios to see what it now reads. Get it as close to 1.75 as you can, and a little over won't hurt. For some reason, your Power Supply isn't supplying enough juice. The other legs look close, but I'd consider a new one because that lead is also the one with the highest AMPERE rating...meaning it may be heading south.

You also mentioned dust and failing fans. Man, it's just time to shut down and do a house cleaning in that thing tomarrow. It's Sunday, what else ya got to do? Here's your mission:
  • Look at Arctic Silver's website and how to apply the goo. Write it down if you have too
  • Go to the local PC store and get some Arctic silver or Coolermaster paste
  • Purchase some cans of air. They aren't gag gifts...they really sell air (man, why didn't I get in on that one!)
  • If you have fans that don't work, buy some of those too.
  • While you're there, price out Power supplies. If you're on a budget, another 350W unit would be fine.
  • Come home and shut down you PC. It's hard...I know
  • take the HS/F off. Take the CPU out of the socket. Clean all the goo off both surfaces
  • blow everything out of that case. Not the hardware, just the tumbleweeds, rabbits, and other rodents
  • put everything back, install the gear, install the cpu, apply the paste according to Arctic Silver's website, simply get it all back together.
  • Take a look and see if it runs again or not.


Hey, if all you do is replace the fans, the paste, and clean the thing out you're only out about $20. Needed done anyway before we could move on. Even if tweaking the voltage fixes it, then you should still get that pig a wash:D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2004 6:51 am 
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Somehow, I totally skimmed over the vcore stat. Good catch. Only thing I'll add to Chumly's post is that you may want to clean and replace the HSF/AS5 before bumpining up the vcore. The higher the voltage, the higher the temps. Tbirds can handle quite a bit of heat, but you're likely looking at high 50s at the proper vcore sitting idle.

Again, good catch Chumly.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2004 9:55 am 
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I'm the 1 with a T-Bird, he has an XP 2100 ... his should be nowhere near that temp at idle, mine doesnt even go anywhere near that temp under full load.


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