The strengths of computer gaming are found at the extremes. It does two things very well: It enables hardcore users to get the best possible performance out of high-end games, and it allows small developers to deliver individualistic and quirky projects direct to users.
You wouldn’t rock a puffy jacket in the summer, would you? Of course not! You’d overheat. So why do you let a six inch layer of dust get your graphics card get all hot and bothered? Cleaning out the grime can cool your PC down, but digging out a can of compressed air and cracking open your PC can take some work. For those time-deprived folks who also want a sparkly-clean PC, MSI’s rolling out products with “Dust Removal Technology.”
My PC has an Intel 2.4GHz Core 2 Quad Q6600, an EVGA 750i FTW motherboard, and two sticks of GSkill DDR2 with timings of 5-5-5-15 2T at 1,066MHz. Two weeks ago, I started getting random lockups and blue screens. After a lot of work, it turns out to be the RAM, which is producing errors in Memtest. However, in testing it I have found that I am getting errors in unlinked mode, at 800MHz, undervolting, overvolting, and moving the RAM around. The only time I don’t get errors is when I run just one stick of RAM. Is this actually a RAM problem or do I have a bigger issue?
Read the Doctor's answer for Tyler after the jump.
I recently had a number of issues with my PC. It seemed that my keyboard was sluggish, if not unresponsive. I also experienced some unusually slow hard drive response times now and then, and there have been times when my computer wouldn’t even boot (the BIOS doesn’t even recognize that my RAID 0 stripe is set up when I reboot). However, if I shut down the PC for a few minutes and then reboot, everything works fine.
I decided to give the insides a thorough dusting, and I discovered there was quite a large dust bunny lodged in my south-bridge chip fan, most likely preventing it from spinning. Since I’ve removed that dust bunny, I haven’t noticed any of the previously described issues with my computer. Could my problems really have been caused by the south-bridge fan not spinning? Could an overheated south-bridge chip cause issues like that, and eventually cripple a computer? I want to believe the answer is yes, but am I getting my hopes up? The system is an EVGA 680i LT board with a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo, 4GB of RAM, and 64-bit Windows 7.
Read the Doctor's answer for McKenna after the jump.
I have a roughly year-old refurbished computer, and for the past few months the fan has been rather loud, and more recently the computer has been shutting down on its own, especially when I’m playing games, or even when I’m just on AIM or surfing the Internet.
I believe the computer might be overheating from dust caught in the fans, but I’m not entirely sure. If that is the case, how do you recommend I clean the computer? I’m quite comfortable working on the computer, but unfortunately I have very little experience working on the insides of my machine, so I have some fears about actually opening up my PC and accidentally breaking something or damaging it. Any advice, Doc?