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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
:angry2:

My computer randomly shuts off.

First it started when I downloaded a game american army, when i played it would all of a sudden shut of, whith kind of a "thump sound" on the speakers. It happened everytime I played the game. this was last week. no other problems

It happened next when I was trying to capture video in Movie maker, both times I tried last. 2-3 days ago

Just now happened when I was playing music "quintecential player" and running a virus scan. Norton 2002.

not sure what can be causing it.

I have a new computer... 6 months tops
I've installed and uninstalled tons of programs and apps mostly from kazaalite.

running spybot and adaware to see if it could be a spyware screw up.

Window updates atleast every 2-3 days when available, Norton up to date etc...

drivers all up to date.

could it be a power surge? though nothing else in the wall ie:light is affected?

seemed to be from graphic intensive programs at first, but this last time makes me question.


ASUS A7N8X-UAY
AMD athlon 2500+
512 DDR RAM
geforce4 ti4200 AGP8X
80Gig WD caviar
onboard sound
xp home
Altec lansing speakers

Please help, i don't want this to fry my harddrive before i can figure out what the problem is.

any suggestions? questions? answers?

j.
 

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I assume you have a surge protector with a high joule rating, so I doubt it's surges.

I also assume that you have at least a 400 Watt power supply for your system. If not, your supply could be too small for when your system needs more power. If your supply is large enough, then it could be having other problems. My gut tells me this is a power supply issue.

Did you build this computer, or is it store-bought?
If it's store-bought, did you add more components to it?
What brand, model, and wattage power supply do you have?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hey thanx, Well i built the computer, the store assembled it, but chose the parts together etc.... what happened was that I bought the cheepest case they had aound $40, then took out that power supply and put it in I believe it is a 350watt power supply (was tying to cut costs, but not quality. I know Bartons are hot, and they said at the store this would be enough.
I will check later today when i get a sec and post all the specs on my power supply.
ever since then no hardware has been added (that was kept) I flirted with a DVD drive and another CDR, but both were gone the same day. my hardware has stayed the same since it rolled off the store other than that.
so you think it could be the power supply. ill pull it out and see what all the details are and post them for you

thanx
j.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
more infor part 2

no i don't have a surge protector with a high joule rating etc...
I know i should but right now can't afford one. though i don't think its a surge since the light plugged into the wall socket as well is not effected.
my power supply is as follows.
SH-ATX365P4
its a P4 power supply 365W but that should be enough for a barton 2500 right? atleast that is what the store told me in Vancouver. I am now in Quebec city (5000km away) otherwise i would bring it back to him.....

thanx for the interest and the info.

j.:bandit:
 

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is it shutting off or restarting?

if the answer is restarting try the folowing to diagnose the problem...

right click my computer and select "properties"

select the advanced tab

press the "startup and recovery" button

in the section called "system failure" their is a checkbox called automatically reboot.

uncheck this box.

If the computer continues to reboot, you have a hardware or power problem, however this is probably not the case. Instead of shutting down now you will see a blue screen of death telling you what the problem is.

btw. the automatically reboot option is the only reason the blue screen of death is no longer in win xp.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
specify/ acknoledge.

No, sorry i wasn't more specific, it doesn't reboot it just dies and then a black screen kind of stares at me. almost laughing at me sometimes it seems.

I have to manually turn the computer on. It didn't go into hybernation or anything. All programs, all data... gone.

its really weird. Ill check the event log, though admit i have no idea where it is. Ill look online to see if i can find where it usually is.

thanx for the tips....

still tryin'

j.:angry2:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Event Log

looked at event log C.P.-->admin tools--> event viewer

Nothing out of the ordinary, though it was my first time looking at it... what is ordinary then? anyway checked out the warnings and the critical scary X's and none of them seem to serious. Even though I have lots, most of them date aug.

I went through the system logs the most, looked at the time I remeber it crashing the most... Last night, nothing was logged. No "event logged stoped" entry.

I assume by your suggestion that you might have had an idea on what this could suggest. Or were you trying to assess the impulsivness of my computers disire to kill itself?

either way, that is the answer to that question. Nothing else I can offer at the moment. sorry.

cheers.
j.:angry2:
 

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The Asus board should've come with a driver and utility CD that includes some sort of Asus probe software. Make sure this is installed, but don't set it to boot up automatically with Windows. Manually start it after you boot up, and pay attention to temperatures and power readings. Especially watch the readings carefully while running graphics-intensice applications.

First, we need to rule out overheating. What temperature are you running at on the probe? If it gets very hot, such as 60C or more, this could be an overheating issure. A cheap case is bad if it doesn't promote good cooling with improved airflow and extra fans, especially if you're using hot stuff such as Athlon and nVidia in it.

Athlons and nVidia love to eat power, and I'd be a bit nervous trying to use a 365W power supply for them. Your problem seems to kick in as soon as the graphics card needs to kick in and consume more power, which is why I'm leaning towards a power shortage. I do know that nVidia recommends a minimum of 350W in a system using a GeForce4, which you barely have. The high-power Athlon is another story, though. The Barton 2500+ is a very high-performance processor that should have a minimum of 400W, and would be even better to have around 480W to ensure problems such as these don't happen. Watch the power readings on the Asus probe right before the black screen pops up, and I bet you'll discover a sizable power drop. Are you able to underclock your processor to make it compatible with a small power supply?

How can you afford this system and not be able to afford a decent surge protector for $20 to $30 (US)? One random lightning strike, and you've instantly lost one or two thousand dollars in valuable computer equipment. This is like owning a Porsche and leaving the keys in it when you park it in the street - Sure, it might not get stolen today, but the odds keep going up everyday. Although a surge protector won't help the current issue, it will ensure that the computer doesn't get fried after we've got your system up and running.
;)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Asus Probe

Thanx for the heads up on the prob for asus im looking at it now. I installed it. My power fan and chassis fan are running below threshold however I don't know if I have them in the computer. They seem to indicate 0 or low levels, not familiar yet with how to read all the stats on this probe.

Everything else seems fine for now.

Ill try to make everything spike later an see what comes of it. Does this program keep a log? I assume so.

Ill look around online to see about this chassis and power fan.

As far as having no money. I am so broke. I broke my collar bone 3 months ago after getting layed off from the airlines ( I was a flight attendant), have had no income since, moved 5000km across Canada, and applied to 3 universities for January. MY finances are in rare state. I have nothing. staying at my sisters now until i get a job. I don't have money to take the bus if i don't borrow it. Just to explain, i know it seems week that i can't afford a better power bar, but in a month i am moving another 1000km to go to university and still need to rent a place and pay tuition. Anyway, thats another problem im having, but can't get any tech support on....
mail checks and donations to:
[email protected] lol!

Once again thanx for the help guys, never used a forum before and am really pleased with how helpfull and knowledgeble everybody is...
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Revalation

Well thanx to all your help, i've discovered through the use of the "asus" probe that my CPU threshold is 71'C, im not sure what that is in 'F 150 something. I was playing zoo Tycoon with my niece for about an hour, then it crashed again.

The prob showed that it crashed at 21:40ish just at the time that my CPU hit 71'C.

I raised the threshold by 1'C, to buy myslef moretime before the next "meltdown" is that wrong?

Why does it crash like that? is there no warning, or way to get a warning.

I attached a screenshot of the event, with as much info as i could. What should my next logical step be? should I get a better (bigger) fan, add another fan (have 2) or get a new power source, or an entire new case.

FYI- I have no viruses on my computer, I alternate between AVG and Norton to do scans, always up to date. Let me know if you have any problems getting the screenshot.

Thanx in advance

 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
lets Try this screenshot again...

no didn't work, why can't I insert a BMP.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
FIXXD!!!!!?

Hello again, nobody else has been posting anything and this will be last my post regarding this matter. I have been working all day and night trying to figure this out. Thanx to everyone for your help and input, I have taken everything into consideration, and as a result I have learn a lot from this experience.

I found that the problem started 2 weeks ago when i tried to install a couple new pieces of hardware, I never installed them.... but when i put my case back together, I mixed up the two panels, and put them on upside down. So that the cold air had no real way to enter the case... no draft of sorts.

i acknoledge that I need to get a better case, power supply and surge protection... all of wich will be done by X-mas, but for the moment, I think i am out of emediate danger.

I looked at all possiblities and worked all the way back to air flow and that is where i figured it out.

cheers thanx. hope you don't think im a total moron.... lol

have a good one. see you all around. I Enjoy this forum a lot.

j.:winkgrin:
 

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You're okay - I think all of us have done something along similar lines.

That 71C is an ouch! I'm running at 33C at the moment. Glad you got the case reassembled correctly so that you have airflow. If you've got time, post what temperature you're running at now. It appears as though the problem was overheating.

Glad to hear things seem to be corrected now. If the case is providing good airflow and cooling now that the panels are correct, you probably only need the surge protector. Save money and skip getting a new case and power supply for now. (If you install more devices on the system later on, you may very likely need a 430W power supply at that time.)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Still crashing

Well last night, all was good (heat wise). Today I've had two crashes in a matter of an hour.
same thing i suspect, I've left the probe, but this time it seemed to be happening in the 65'C range, is there a reason for this change?

My computer, since i have been moitoring this probe, has been running around 50'C-62'C. I remember looking around in the bios a few weeks back and it was at 38'C though im not sure if that was off of a first boot. Likely not, my computer is almost always on.

Right now I ripped the side panel off to let some air in. Right away that gives me a drop.

Im now at 47'C CPU
28'C motherboard
CPU fan 3708
Power fan 0
chassis fan 0
+12v----------- 12.416
+5v------------- 4.784
+3.3v------------3.296
Vcore------------1.664

the time it took me to write this my CPU temp climbed up to 60'C and still rising. the only difference is that i have an extra program running... A united devices program (use idle computer computer power for scientific reserche.) I shut it off and lost 4 degrees in about 1-2min. Only started using that program yesterday.
other than that I am running Norton 2002, Zone Alarm, Local Area connect, internet connection, and asus Probe.

Back to 51'C havn't left at all this is all in 10 min since ive started typing.

Now I see that i have 3 fans in my Case, only one of which get detected by the probe. All of which physically turn when i look at them.

However the CPU fan has a world of dust. A half inch in some places. I am going to clean it out, it can only help to remove the dust.

Do i risk distroying the fan by doing this? should i take it off and clean it (don't know how) or maybe stick the vaccum to it and pull the dust of it (sounds wrong).

What are my options from here boys?

j:bandit:

ps With the case open and only the probe, internet explorer, and internet connection (the rest I have just dissabled, im running at 40'C. That is where i would like to be. but don't have the option to leave the case open or my virus protection and firewall off.
 

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This is a bad heat issue.

Definitely clean the CPU fan and heatsink! With the system unpowered and unplugged, remove the fan assembly and heatsink. There should be a couple latches on the top. Unlatch these and carefully remove the fan and heatsink. A vacuum has the potential to damage things since the dust particles can cause static electricity as they speed across components. Canned air, which is cheap at Wal-Mart type stores and office products retailers, would be best to blow the dust away from the processor and motherboard. The removed fan assembly could be vacuumed, though. Wiping the fan assembly with a clean, damp rag would be okay as well. Use the canned air to blow all the dust out of the case. ( I suppose you could physically blow the dust out, but don't spit in the case. Use quick puffs.) A clean, damp rag can be used to wipe the inside part of the case, as long as you don't touch and of the actual computer hardware with it.

After the dust is gone, reattach the fan assembly and heatsink. Make mental notes before you remove it so that you can put it back on correctly. Make sure the CPU fan is plugged into it's power pins on the motherboard.

Make sure all fans are plugged into power, and that the rear fans are blowing air out of the case. Any front fans should be blowing air into the case, and the power supply fan should be blowing air out of the case.

We need to get your CPU temperature down to a sustained 40C or less.

Is your computer right next to one of the heating ducts in your house? If so, get it far away from there!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Clean Yes... Cool no

Well I cleaned my Fan and heatsink out. I never took them out, but rather used a nice paintbrush, and a hand held air pump and blasted out the little kittens that were hiding in the fan.

So much dust! what from? Anyway, made a huge difference, not overheating anymore, though still have not tested my computer to the max. What gave me problems on a day to day basis before seem to be better now.

I am crusing at about 51'C and could see that rise to 60'C with increase activity. Right now I am running a pretty intensive program on my computer from Universal Devices, its using my free computer space to conduct Cancer research and part of the reason why im at 51'C. However yesterday those computations would have sailed me past 71'C and a meltdown.

So we are doing better

I know that AMD runs hot, but what is hot? Is 50-60 too hot?

I forgot to mention i also have my side of the case open, that seems to give me 5'C cooler, so....

There are no other heat sources around.... Maybe I should put my hardrive outside... It is snowing here today lol!

Is maybe a better case with better fans the way to go? COuld this be the simptoms of a bigger problem.

could a reformat help? Im doing that anyway if i ever find this @#$%% LG GCE-8520B driver!

heres hoping...

j.
:bandit:
 

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Asus probe software

Mental_Myopia said:
The Asus board should've come with a driver and utility CD that includes some sort of Asus probe software. Make sure this is installed, but don't set it to boot up automatically with Windows. Manually start it after you boot up, and pay attention to temperatures and power readings. Especially watch the readings carefully while running graphics-intensice applications.
;)
:confused: When you said, "Make sure this is installed, but don't set it to boot up automatically with Windows." -- is that your personal preference or is there a risk of having the program automatically start with Windows and running in the background. :confused:

:winkgrin: I installed the program (which iBuyPower.com didn't think to do) and set it to update the sensor every second. I like the program, although I would like to have been able to turned on a icon with the temperature the items I select. I also put the shortcut in my STARTUP folder, so I automatically starts with Windows. Is there any problem with them? :confused:
 
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